National | IMPERIAL ANNALS

Chronology of key events in the life of Emperor Showa

Kyodo

April 29, 1901 — The eldest son of Crown Prince Yoshihito (Emperor Taisho) is born. The son is named Hirohito (Prince Michi).
March 6, 1903 — Princess Nagako (Empress Nagako) is born.
July 30, 1912 — Emperor Meiji dies at 59. Crown Prince Yoshihito becomes the Emperor and Prince Hirohito becomes the Crown Prince.
Nov. 25, 1921 — Crown Prince Hirohito becomes prince regent.
Dec. 27, 1923 — Prince Regent Hirohito’s car comes under fire from a would-be assassin in what is known as the Toranomon Incident).
Jan. 26, 1924 — Prince Regent Hirohito and Princess Nagako are married.
Dec. 25, 1926 — Emperor Taisho dies at age 47. Crown Prince Hirohito becomes Emperor, and his reign is known as the Showa Era.
Jan. 8, 1932 — Emperor Showa’s procession is attacked by a would-be assassin throwing a hand grenade in what came to be known as the Sakuradamon Incident.
Dec. 23, 1933 — Crown Prince Akihito (Prince Tsugu) is born.
July 7, 1937 — The Sino-Japanese War begins.
Sept. 1, 1939 — World War II begins.
Dec. 8, 1941 — Japan declares war on the U.S. and U.K.
Aug. 6, 1945 — The U.S. drops an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
Aug. 8 — The Soviet Union declares war on Japan.
Aug. 9 — An atomic bomb is dropped on Nagasaki.
Aug. 15 — In a radio address, Emperor Showa tells the nation of Japan’s surrender and the end of World War II.
Jan. 1, 1946 — Emperor Showa denies his own divinity in a New Year’s rescript.
June 17, 1946 — Prosecutors at the international military tribunal for the Far East say they will not prosecute Emperor Showa.
May 3, 1947 — Japan’s new Constitution comes into force.
Sept. 8, 1951 — Japan signs the San Francisco peace treaty and the Japan-U.S. security pact.
Nov. 10, 1952 — Prince Akihito is formally installed as the Crown Prince.
April 10, 1959 — Crown Prince Akihito marries Michiko Shoda, the first commoner to marry an heir to the Chrysanthemum Throne.
Sept. 19, 1988 — Emperor Showa vomits blood, receives a blood transfusion.
Jan. 7, 1989 — Emperor Showa dies of duodenal cancer, ending his 62-year-long reign.