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  • 15 B.C. The Romans conquer the Helvetii and other resident alpine tribes.
  • 455 A.D. Barbarian invasions begin.
  • 742-814 Charlemagne incorporates much of what is now Switzerland into his enormous empire.
  • 1291 Three cantons form the Perpetual Alliance, the germ of today's Swiss Confederation.
  • 1439 The confederation breaks free of the Holy Roman Empire.
  • 1516 The confederates (Eidgenossen) proclaim their neutrality.
  • 1798 The French Revolution brings an invasion of radical forces and ideas, and the old confederation collapses.
  • 1803 Napoleon Bonaparte establishes a new 19-canton confederation, with relatively enlightened social policies.
  • 1814-15 The Congress of Vienna guarantees the national boundaries and neutrality of Switzerland.
  • 1848 The Swiss adopt a federal constitution, still in force today; Bern is recognized as the capital.
  • 1914 Switzerland declares its neutrality at the outbreak of World War I.
  • 1918 Swiss workers stage the only general strike the country has ever known.
  • 1920 Switzerland joins the League of Nations, offering space for a headquarters at Geneva.
  • 1939 Fearing an invasion by Nazi Germany, the country orders a total mobilization of its air and ground forces.
  • 1939-45 Remaining neutral, despite its laundering of Nazi gold, Switzerland becomes a haven for escaping prisoners of war and avoids direct conflicts.
  • 1948 Switzerland introduces broad-based social reforms, including the funding of old-age pensions.
  • 1986 The Swiss electorate votes against membership in the United Nations.
  • 1992 By a close vote, the Swiss reject ties to an economically integrated Europe.
  • 1996-97 Critics around the world attack Switzerland's role as a World War II banker for the Nazi war effort.
  • 1998 Three Swiss banks agree to a $1.25-billion fund to be distributed among Holocaust victims.
  • 2000 Swiss voters agree to closer E.U. link.
  • 2002 Swiss abandon isolation to join the U.N.
  • 2004 Switzerland called a "terror way station" for Al Qaeda suspects who used the country as a base.
  • 2007 Swiss celebrates 50th anniversary of voting rights for women.
  • 2010 Women take control of executive branch of the government.3 Switzerland's Art & Architecture

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.