IN PURSUIT OF HONOR
Cash strapped towns and cities are scrambling to find ways to save and keep services going. For Highland Park Michigan, the solution is both dangerous and sad:
As the sun dips below the rooftops each evening, parts of this Detroit enclave turn to pitch black, the only illumination coming from a few streetlights at the end of the block or from glowing yellow yard globes.
It wasn't always this way. But when the debt-ridden community could no longer afford its monthly electric bill, elected officials not only turned off 1,000 streetlights. They had them ripped out - bulbs, poles and all. Now nightfall cloaks most neighborhoods in inky darkness.
"How can you darken any city?" asked Victoria Dowdell, standing in the halo of a light in her front yard. "I think that was a disgrace. She said the decision endangers everyone, especially people who have to walk around at night or catch the bus.
Highland Park's decision is one of the nation's most extreme austerity measures, even among the scores of communities that can no longer afford to provide basic services.
The dawn of a new year is usually a time of hope and ambition, of dreams for the future and thoughts of a better life. But it is a long time since many of us looked forward to the new year with such anxiety, even dread.
In Britain, many economists believe that by the end of 2012 could well slipped into a second devastating recession. The Coalition remains delicately poised; it would take only one or two resignations to provoke a wider schism and a general election.
But the real dangers lie overseas. In the Middle East, the excitement of the Arab Spring has long since curdled into sectarian tension and fears of Islamic fundamentalism. And with so many of the world’s oil supplies concentrated in the Persian Gulf, American families will be keeping an anxious eye on events in the Arab world.
The Battle of Cable Street: Mosley's fascists tried to march through the Jewish East End, a scene that could be repeated
Wall Street Crash 1929: Scenes outside the New York Stock Exchange on the day the stock market crashed may once again become a reality
Meanwhile, as the eurozone slides towards disaster, the prospects for Europe have rarely been bleaker. Already the European elite have installed compliant technocratic governments in Greece and Italy, and with the markets now putting pressure on France, few observers can be optimistic that the Continent can avoid a total meltdown.
As commentators often remark, if Europe fails….America follows. The world picture has not been grimmer since the dark days of the mid-Seventies, when the OPEC oil shock, the rise of stagflation and the surge of nationalist terrorism cast a heavy shadow over the Western world.
For the most chilling parallel, though, we should look back exactly 80 years, to the cold wintry days when 1931 gave way to 1932.
The ultimate warning from history: If our political leaders fail to provide adequate direction the results, as demonstrated 80 years ago, could be catastrophic
Then as now, few people saw much to mourn in the passing of the old year. It was in 1931 that the Great Depression really took hold in Europe, bringing governments to their knees and plunging tens of millions of people out of work.
Then as now, the crisis had taken years to gather momentum. After the Wall Street Crash in 1929 — just as after the banking crisis of 2008 — some observers even thought that the worst was over.
But in the summer of 1931, a wave of banking panics swept across central Europe. As the German and Austrian financial houses tottered, Britain’s Labour government came under fierce market pressure to slash spending and cut benefits.
Bitterly divided, the Labour leader Ramsay MacDonald decided to resign from office — only to return immediately as the leader of an all-party Coalition known as the National Government, dominated by Stanley Baldwin’s Conservatives.
Like today’s Coalition, the National Government was an uneasy marriage. Sunk in self-pity and spending much of his time flirting with aristocratic hostesses, MacDonald cut a miserable and semi-detached figure. By comparison, even Nick Clegg looks a model of strong, decisive leadership.
As for the Tory leader Stanley Baldwin, he had more in common with David Cameron than we might think. A laid-back Old Harrovian, tolerant, liberal-minded and ostentatiously relaxed, Baldwin spent as much time as possible on holiday in the South of France, preferring to enjoy the Mediterranean sunshine rather than get his hands dirty with the nuts and bolts of policy.
Meanwhile, far from offering a strong and coherent Opposition, the rump Labour Party seemed doomed to irrelevance. At least its leader, the pacifist Arthur Henderson, could claim to be a man of the people, having hauled himself up by his bootstraps from his early days as a Newcastle metal worker.
Not even his greatest admirers could possibly say the same of today’s adenoidal, stammering Opposition leader, the toothless Ed Miliband.
The end of Democracy: The dire situation in 1932 led to many threats to the democratic system we so value, including the assassination of the French President Paul Doumer
With the politicians apparently impotent in the face of the economic blizzard, many people were losing faith in parliamentary democracy. Their despair was hardly surprising: in some industrial towns of the North, Wales and Scotland, unemployment in 1932 reached a staggering 70 per cent.
With thousands more being plunged out of work every week, even the National Government estimated that one in four people were making do on a mere subsistence diet. Scurvy, rickets and tuberculosis were rife; in the slag heaps of Wigan, George Orwell saw ‘several hundred women’ scrabbling ‘in the mud for hours’, searching for tiny chips of coal so they could heat their homes.
Feeling betrayed by mainstream politicians, many sought more extreme alternatives. Then as now, Britain was rocked by marches and demonstrations. In October 1932, a National Hunger March in Hyde Park saw bloody clashes between protesters and mounted policemen, with 75 people being badly injured.
Toothless: Ed Miliband can hardly claim to be a man of the people like the pacifist Arthur Henderson
And while Left-wing intellectuals were drawn to the supposedly utopian promise of the Soviet leader Josef Stalin — who turned out to be a brutal tyrant — thousands of ordinary people flocked to the banners of the British Union of Fascists, founded in the autumn of 1932 by the former Labour maverick Sir Oswald Mosley.
Never before or since has the far Right commanded greater British support — a worrying reminder of the potential for economic frustration to turn into demagogic resentment.
But the most compelling parallels between 1932 and 2012 lie overseas, where the economic and political situation was, if anything, even darker.
Eighty years ago, the world was struggling to come to terms with an entirely new financial landscape. In August 1931, the system by which currencies were pegged to the value of gold had fallen apart, with market pressure forcing Britain to pull the pound off the gold standard.
Almost overnight, the system that was supposed to ensure global economic stability was gone. And as international efforts to coordinate a response collapsed, so nations across the world fell back on self-interested economic protectionism.
In August 1932, the British colonies and dominions met in the Canadian capital, Ottawa, and agreed a policy of Imperial Preference, putting high tariffs on goods from outside the Empire. International free trade was now a thing of the past; in this frightening new world, it was every man for himself.
Today’s situation, of course, is even more frightening. Our equivalent of the gold standard — the misguided folly of the euro — is poised on the brink of disaster, yet the European elite refuse to let poorer Mediterranean nations like Greece and Portugal leave the eurozone, devalue their new currencies and start again.
Should the eurozone collapse, as seems perfectly likely given Greece’s soaring debts, Spain’s record unemployment, Italy’s non-existent growth and the growing market pressure on France’s ailing economy, then the consequences would be much worse than when Britain left the gold standard.
The shockwaves across Europe — which could come as early as next spring — would see banks tottering, businesses crashing and millions thrown out of work. For British firms that trade with Europe, as well as holiday companies, airports, travel firms and the City of London itself, the meltdown of the eurozone would be a catastrophe.
If the eurozone crisis intensifies, then it is no idle fantasy to imagine that Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy and their Brussels allies will demand an even greater centralisation of powers
Vladimir Putin looks almost cuddly in comparison to the rule of dictatorial Stalin in 1932
And as the experience of 80 years ago suggests, the political and social ramifications would be too terrible to contemplate. For in many ways, the 12 months between the end of 1931 and the beginning of 1933 were the tipping point between democracy and tyranny, the moment when the world plunged from an uneasy peace towards hatred and bloodshed.
In the East, new powers were already on the rise. At the end of 1931, Imperial Japan had already launched a staggeringly brutal invasion of China, the Japanese armies pouring into the disputed province of Manchuria in search of raw materials.
Today the boot is on the other foot, with China ploughing billions into its defence programme and establishing de facto economic colonies across Africa, bringing copper, cobalt and zinc back to the mother country.
Indeed, future historians may well look back and see the first years of the 2010s as the moment when the Chinese Empire began to strengthen its global grip.
In the Soviet Union in 1932, meanwhile, Stalin’s reign of terror was intensifying. With dissent crushed by the all-powerful Communist Party, his state-sponsored collectivisation of the Ukrainian farms saw a staggering 6 million die in one of the worst famines in history.
By these standards, the autocratic Vladimir Putin looks almost cuddly.
Barack Obama cuts a similarly impotent, indecisive and isolationist figure. The difference is that in 1932, one of the greatest statesmen of the century, the Democratic politician Franklin D. Roosevelt, was waiting in the wings
And yet we should not forget that Putin himself described the fall of the Soviet empire as one of the greatest catastrophes of the century — and that half of all Russian teenagers recently told a survey that Stalin was a wise and strong leader.
By comparison, Europe’s democratic leaders look woolly and vacillating, just as they did back in 1932. Indeed, for the democratic West, this was a truly terrible year.
Democracy itself seemed to be under siege. In France, President Paul Doumer was murdered by an assassin. In Portugal, the authoritarian, ultra-Catholic dictator Antonio Salazar launched a reign of terror that would last into the Seventies. And in Italy, the Fascist leader Benito Mussolini strengthened his grip, consolidating Italian power in the looted colonies of Albania and Libya.
Eighty years on, we have no room for complacency. Although the far Right remains no more than a thuggish and eccentric minority, the elected prime ministers of Greece and Italy have already been booted out to make way for EU-approved technocrats for whom nobody has ever voted.
In the new Europe, the will of the people seems to play second fiddle to the demands of Paris and Berlin. And if the eurozone crisis intensifies, then it is no idle fantasy to imagine that Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy and their Brussels allies will demand an even greater centralisation of powers, provoking nationalist outrage on the streets of Europe’s capitals.
Sadly, there seems little point in looking across the Atlantic for inspiration. In 1932, President Herbert Hoover, beleaguered by rising unemployment and tumbling ratings, flailed and floundered towards election defeat.
Today, Barack Obama cuts a similarly impotent, indecisive and isolationist figure. The difference is that in 1932, one of the greatest statesmen of the century, the Democratic politician Franklin D. Roosevelt, was waiting in the wings.
Today, American voters looking for alternatives are confronted only with a bizarre gaggle of has-beens, inadequates and weirdos, otherwise known as the Republican presidential field. And to anybody who cares about the future of the Western world, the prospect of President Newt Gingrich is frankly spine-chilling.
In Italy, the Fascist leader Benito Mussolini, pictured with Hitler, strengthened his grip, consolidating Italian power in the looted colonies of Albania and Libya
Above all, though, the eyes of the world back in 1932 were fixed on Germany. As the Weimar Republic staggered towards oblivion, an obscure Austrian painter was setting his sights on supreme power.
With rising unemployment eating away at the bonds of democratic civility, the National Socialist Party was within touching distance of government.
And in the last days of 1932, after the technocrats and generals had failed to restore order, President Paul von Hindenburg began to contemplate the unthinkable — the prospect of Adolf Hitler as Chancellor of Germany.
We all know what happened next. Indeed, by the end of 1932 the world was about to slide towards a new dark age, an age of barbarism and bloodshed on a scale that history had never known.
Eighty years on, it would be easy to sit back and reassure ourselves that the worst could never happen again. But that, of course, was what people told each other in 1932, too.
The lesson of history is that tough times often reward the desperate and dangerous, from angry demagogues to anarchists and nationalists, from seething mobs to expansionist empires.
Our world is poised on the edge of perhaps the most important 12 months for more than half a century. If our leaders provide the right leadership, then we may, perhaps, muddle through towards slow growth and gradual recovery.
But if the European elite continue to inflict needless hardship on their people; if the markets continue to erode faith in the euro; and if Western politicians waste their time in petty bickering, then we could easily slip further towards discontent and disaster.
The experience of 1932 provides a desperately valuable lesson. As a result of the decisions taken in those 12 short months, millions of people later lost their lives.
Today, on the brink of a new year that could well prove the most frightening in living memory, we can only pray that our history takes a very different path.
The seismic events which have seen the near-destruction of the investment banking sector and the collapse of insurance giant AIG are on the scale of the Great Crash of 1929.
That was such a disaster because it created conditions for the emergence of fascism in continental Europe and then World War II.
Although it is hard to predict the consequences, we should expect ramifications of equal significance — including the re-emergence of violent Far Right parties across the globe.
Some experts were talking this week as if the financial crisis was nearly over. They
But they will be felt very soon and very brutally. The British economy is in the same position as the Texan coast earlier this month as Hurricane Ike approached — apparently calm, with life going on as normal, but an almighty storm is raging just
We can expect a sharp increase in personal bankruptcies. Yet the numbers will not peak until this time next year at the earliest.
Hundreds of thousands of people will lose their jobs, with many forced to sell their houses. Property prices will slump.
There will be extreme human suffering, panic and despair. Many careers will be
The orthodoxy from the British Government, the Confederation of British Industry and elsewhere that there will be a mild slowdown ending late next year is nonsense.
This crisis is vicious, dynamic and only just beginning.
Even those of us lucky enough not to lose our jobs and our homes will have friends and relatives who do.
Let us examine, first, the fate of City bankers from firms such as Lehman Brothers — all summarily dismissed when their firm went under this week.
They will receive no severance payment and almost no chance ever again of benefiting from the six-figure salaries and massive bonuses they have taken for
That means they cannot service the huge mortgages they have taken out on hugely expensive houses. So this weekend they have become forced sellers — which means that thousands of new For Sale signs will be going up in London and the South-East
Personal bankruptcy:Traders and investment bankers face an uncertain future
If these unemployed investment bankers had the misfortune to buy anywhere near the top of the market, they now face the prospect of personal bankruptcy.
This is because they will find that their houses are worth much less than they paid for
With so many vendors on the market obliged to sell at any price, it can be assumed that any London house will fetch 25 per cent less this weekend than it would have done this time last week.
Many of the younger bankers — those in their 20s and 30s with young families — now face utter disaster.
Of course, there is scant public sympathy for these former ‘masters of the universe’ who enjoyed good times.
But we already know that Thursday’s merger of Lloyds Bank and HBOS (supposing it
There will be bloodletting on every High Street where there is both an HBOS and Lloyds outlet — one branch will undoubtedly be closed.
But that body-blow is just the start. Over the coming months, the financial typhoon will mercilessly spread outwards and wreak devastation on the economy.
Banks will foreclose on thousands of small businesses.Massive corporate failures are inevitable.
These disasters will then rebound on the financial sector, as company bankruptcies
Unemployment — already rising fast and up 80,000 over the summer — is set to surge ahead and will increase well above the two million predicted by economists.
This will produce a vicious spiral. Every worker out of a job means less tax receipts and higher welfare payments.
In last March’s Budget (a work of fiction when it was published), Alistair Darling forecast borrowing this year of £43 billion. Even at the time, this figure was shockingly large.
It meant that only Egypt, Pakistan and Hungary among significant world economies had more profligate government spending than Britain.
Why would a handful of wealthy central banking families want to impoverish the US and render its citizens penniless? Our conclusion is simple: World government is on the way and the American culture is still resistant to the kind of hyper-regulatory corporatism that is necessary to support this kind of governance.
America (the West, generally) has apparently been under attack by an organized cabal of inter-generational banking families and corporate, business and military enablers for at least 200 years now, and perhaps 300 years. In the past 50 years, the pace has accelerated.
One by one, the UN, IMF, World Bank, BIS, ICC (international court), WHO and countless other globalist organizations have been put in place. The mainstream media treats this evolution as inevitable. It cannot be. Each evolution must be planned, funded and promoted. When it comes to politics of this sort, there are no coincidences, as FDR once observed.
We have taken to calling what has evolved “directed history” – in which events including wars are planned to ensure maximum destruction of the culture as it is in order to further militarize, globalize (and impoverish) what remains.
Because America was a “great exception” – founded as a republic with a culture that was relentlessly entrepreneurial and agricultural – America has been under sustained attack to ensure that its culture is Europeanized and recreated as what we call “regulatory democracy.”
Regulatory democracy is one word for what has evolved. Corporatism is another. Fascism (of a sort) would be a third. No matter what word is used, the current Western model for nation states relies heavily on unelected bureaucrats, intelligence agencies and a military industrial complex that basically reports to the aforementioned elites and is not affected by voting or other democratic elements.
The modern nation state is funded by central banks, also seemingly controlled by these elite families, and the ultimate goal is formal global governance. Some question why a formal international government is necessary. The answer is that the elites like to work within a “lawful” environment of their own creation. The more that reality corresponds to their notions and plans, the easier it is to continually consolidate power.
Nothing else – no other sociopolitical model – seems to explain what has happened to America and Europe. The EU is a disaster and the euro has proven to be a currency that has brought ruin on the Southern crescent of that artificial entity. The one-size-fits all central banking policies of the union continue to collapse jobs and economies – something we’ve been forecasting for several years now.
European elites are on record as anticipating the disaster and welcoming it because it will allow for the creation a closer “political union.” But in the Internet era, people are not so easily manipulated as they were in the 20th Century. The pushback to elite plans is extreme. The fate of the EU is by no means pre-determined. Events could easily spin out of control.
In the US, the great merger between Canada, Mexico and America has been all-but-abandoned – for the time being. However, one of the primary figures behind that putative merger is Texas governor Rick Perry who spent much time and political energy in the early 2000s trying create a “North American Union.” In our view it is no accident that he was once a front-runner for the presidency.
The Rick Perry story is certainly illustrative of how the elites work. Perry actively supported a superhighway of some 20 lanes plus railroad tracks that was (and is) planned to bisect the US, running from Mexico to Canada. It would effectively turn the country into two separate halves, both of which would be economic backwaters, as trade and prosperity flowed between Canada and Mexico.
Perry also supported a kind of international health-care in which the US would subsidize medical treatments for Mexicans. He tried to portray this as a rare opportunity to address flaws in the health care system that a bi-national program would counteract. But in reality, it was more internationalism.
Perry was and is a globalist; he is likely a candidate of the elites and it is perhaps no coincidence that he is suddenly a leading GOP choice to run for president. Perry’s globalist sympathies were so evident in Texas that he had to write a book renouncing them.
In his book, from what we can tell, he basically repurposes most if not all of libertarian presidential candidate Ron Paul’s message of small government and reliance on the private sector. Perry’s statements were so extreme, however, that he has made himself a target on both sides of the aisle.
Perry is just one more unmoored and unprincipled politician, willing to undermine his country and its hundreds of millions for personal gain. (Some have compared him to a used car salesman and claimed in another, less corrupt era he would never have achieved his current position.) He has become a millionaire several times over during his political career, and no doubt millions more await him if he does by some chance become president.
Meanwhile, the larger American economy continues to suffer. Critics in the mainstream media will have plenty of explanations for how their country came to be in the shape that it is in. But from our humble perspective, there can only be one explanation; it’s part of a larger plan, at least to some degree. Here’s some more from the article, above:
The poverty rate for all Americans rose in 2010 for the third consecutive year, matching the 15.1% figure in 1993 and pushing many more young adults to double up or return to their parents’ home to avoid joining the ranks of the poor. Taken together, the annual income and poverty snapshot released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau underscored how the recession is casting a long shadow well after its official end in June 2009 …
The total number of Americans who fell below the official poverty line last year rose from 43.6 million in 2009. Of the 2.6-million increase, about two-thirds of the people said they did not work even one week last year. Those with jobs were much less likely to be poor, but the recession and weak recovery have wiped out income gains of prior years for a broad spectrum of workers and their families.
Inflation-adjusted median household income — the middle of the populace — fell 2.3% to $49,445 last year from a year ago and 7% from 2000. “It’s a lost decade for the middle class,” said Sheldon Danziger, a poverty expert at the University of Michigan. The number of poor children younger than 18 reached its highest level since 1962, said William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution.
This is an unmitigated disaster, and it is hitting young people the hardest. Overall, the number of 25- to 34-year-old men and women who were living with their parents last spring totaled 5.9 million, the article tells us, and this is a 25.5% increase since the recession began in 2007.
Of course, we note the words that are used in the article to describe the current conflagration, specifically the “R” word, recession. This is no recession, from what we can tell. Nor has there been a “weak recovery.”
With 50 million or so Americans relying on food stamps and unemployment realistically hovering at least in the 20 percent area (we think its closer to 30 percent), one can use any words one wants to – even “banana” – but a depression is a depression.
The elites, of course, fear depression. While it is important to remove prosperity from people’s lives in order to make them malleable, too much hardship can cause social chaos and the kind of pushback that puts “civilized” institutions at risk. During the Great Depression, the elites were most worried about armed insurrection in America and Europe, especially because there were so many young men with military experience as a result of World War One.
But depression is the logical outcome of the economic system now in place throughout the West. Driven by central bank fiat money divorced from underlying value, powered by taxes, visible and invisible, that take up to 50 percent of the average person’s income, and rigorously controlled by a blizzard of incomprehensible and destructive regulations, the system in place now is Babylonian in its devious intricacy and seemingly beyond redemption.
Add in five or six regional wars in the Middle East and Africa (with more doubtless coming) and the general militarization of the population and the larger model of corporatism, and the results become clear. The economy of the West has been so distorted that price signals are simply not available. No one knows what to invest in because government subsidies, regulation and fiat money have made it impossible to tell a healthy enterprise from a fraudulent one.
There is an easy way out of the depression that is gradually lengthening over the West like a malevolent shadow. Return to free and unregulated markets, disband central banks and let money freely compete and circulate, especially gold and silver.
Stop distorting the economy with endless government fixes, phony wars and the saddlingof the larger culture with the inevitable failing prescriptions of “wise men.” These are simple solutions. They have worked in the past and sooner or later they will work again. The elites, as powerful as they are, cannot forever hold back the logic of the larger market.
It is, in fact, inevitable in our view. In this era of the Internet Reformation, it is likely impossible for the elites to fully complete their globalist campaign. Too much is known about what’s planned and as a result, the great families are turning more and more (ineffectively) to repression, wiretapping and violence to achieve their ends.
Conclusion: This is evidence of the weakness of their position and we have seen no evidence that their situation can much improve either in the long or short term. In the 21st Century we would tend to believe that people may not prove so malleable as the elite has hoped. The Internet Reformation proceeds apace, bringing to the West more and more that is unexpected and hard to control. Directed history is harder and harder to implement. “Things fall apart,” novelist Chinua Achebe once observed. Not just in Africa.
Laughing in the face of the Great Depression: Stunning LIFE magazine photos offer glimpse into decades past
magazine LIFE takes on a new form as a coffee table book is released this week to celebrate the publication's 75th anniversary.
The book shows some of the magazine's most famous photographs and includes an entire reprinting of the inaugural issue from November 1936, giving a glimpse back into life during the Great Depression.
The magazine was the brainchild of publisher Henry Luce who had previously founded Time in 1920 and Fortune in 1930.
Having fun in their down time: Workers enjoying a drink in the shanty town that was built to help the construction of the Fort Peck Dam in Montana
Lively: Life editor Henry Luce preferred to publish the photos showing their fun moments over their working woes
Sign of the times: The signs shown behind the drinking woman highlight the discrimination faced by Native Americans in 1936, an the country's support of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Mr Luce dedicated his new creation to highlighting the value in photojournalism, placing a heavy emphasis on the images of a story as opposed to the text.
The first issue covered the construction of the Fort Peck Dam in Montana, which was slated to be the largest dam ever built at the time.
The cover: Life magazine was dedicated to showcasing photojournalism, and the inaugural cover was particularly ground breaking because it was shot by a female photographer
Men at work: The Fort Peck Dam was a Works Progress Administration project, aimed to increase employment during the Great Depression
Mr Luce assigned the story to Margaret Bourke-White, the magazine's first female photographer, making her cover shot even more ground-breaking.
Showing his predilection towards the tawdry, Mr Luce preferred the photos shot inside the saloons where the workers went after a long day's labour as opposed to the more industrial images of the efforts of the Works Progress Administration, created in 1935 during the Great Depression to help the unemployed.
World news: This 1934 photo shows Adolf Hitler when he was coming to power in Germany five years before the outbreak of the war in Europe
Laughs and screams: The magazine showed the lighter side of life as well, like this photo of children at a puppet show in France dated 1963
Caught: Prisoners at Buchenwald, a German Nazi concentration camp, were pictured at the end of World War II
Tragic: A U.S. Marine is shown holding a near-dead infant that he found abandoned under a rock while investigating a cave in Japan during WWII
'It just shows the power of the editors because Bourke-White was a a great photojournalist. ... She went out there and got the whole story, brought it back to New York, Luce looked at it — and he wanted half the story,' said Bob Sullivan, the current managing editor of Life Books.
'The editors, I'm sure at Luce's instruction, only ran the sexy stuff,' he told NPR.
The photos span all topics, but some of the most lasting images are the ones of war.
World War II broke out just five years after the magazine first appeared, and it dedicated quite a staff to the war effort from the get-go.
Civil disobedience: Indian leader Mohandas Gandhi shown with a spinning wheel in the foreground, known as a symbol of the country's independence
Hollywood: Stars like Marilyn Monroe always caught the public's interest
The moment: A young kitchen staffer was shown trying to comfort Senator Robert Kennedy after he was shot in a hotel ballroom in 1968
Photographers were sent to the front lines, but kept mind of the magazine's name, paying attention to the daily lives of people across Europe.
In order to span all parts of the American consciousness, the magazine deemed itself a general interest photojournalism magazine, with articles covering Hollywood stars like Marilyn Monroe, baseball players like Mickey Mantle, and jazz legends like Louis Armstrong.
In January 1971, the magazine switched from a weekly to a monthly publication and finally closed its doors to regular circulation in 2000. Now there are occasional special thematic editions.
Legend: Baseball player Mickey Mantle throwing a helmet during a bad game
A different war: Life photographers were also sent to Vietnam and some of their photos from the front lines are the most disturbing
Creative genius: Artist Pablo Picasso pictured as he painted with light
let us go back to the 1940's America and relieve those heady days before WWII. A time similar to our present times.
United States - officially United States of America, republic (2000 pop. 281,421,906), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. It consists of 50 states and a federal district. The conterminous (excluding Alaska and Hawaii) United States stretches across central North America from Read More...
United States - officially United States of America, republic (2000 pop. 281,421,906), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. It consists of 50 states and a federal district. The conterminous (excluding Alaska and Hawaii) United States stretches across central North America from the Atlantic Ocean on the east to the Pacific Ocean on the west, and from Canada on the north to Mexico and the Gulf of Mexico on the south. The state of Alaska is located in extreme NW North America between the Arctic and Pacific oceans and is bordered by Canada on the east. The state of Hawaii, an island chain, is situated in the E central Pacific Ocean c.2,100 mi (3,400 km) SW of San Francisco. Washington, D.C., is the capital of the United States, and New York is its largest city.
The outlying territories and areas of the United States include: in the Caribbean Basin, Puerto Rico (a commonwealth associated with the United States) and the Virgin Islands of the United States (purchased from Denmark in 1917); in the Pacific Ocean, Guam (ceded by Spain after the Spanish-American War), the Northern Mariana Islands (a commonwealth associated with the United States), American Samoa, Wake Island, and several other islands. The United States also has compacts of free association with the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Republic of Palau, and the Federated States of Micronesia.
The conterminous United States may be divided into several regions: the New England states ( Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut), the Middle Atlantic states ( New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia), the Southeastern states ( North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Kentucky), the states of the Midwest ( Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, and Missouri), the Great Plains states ( North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas), the Mountain states ( Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah), the Southwestern states ( Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona), and the states of the Far West ( Washington, Oregon, California, and Nevada).
Alaska is the largest state in area (656,424 sq mi/1,700,578 sq km), and Rhode Island is the smallest (1,545 sq mi/4,003 sq km). California has the largest population (2000 pop. 33,871,648), while Wyoming has the fewest people (2000 pop. 493,782). In the late 20th cent., Nevada, Arizona, Florida, Colorado, Utah, Georgia, and Texas experienced the fastest rates of population growth, while California, Texas, Florida, Georgia, Arizona, and North Carolina gained the greatest number of residents. West Virginia, North Dakota, and the District of Columbia experienced population decreases over the same period. The largest U.S. cities are New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and Philadelphia. Among the other major cities are Boston, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Richmond, Virginia Beach, Charlotte, Atlanta, Jacksonville, Tampa, Miami, Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Detroit, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Saint Louis, Nashville, Memphis, New Orleans, Kansas City, Oklahoma City, Dallas– Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio, El Paso, Albuquerque, Denver, Salt Lake City, Phoenix, Tucson, Las Vegas, Seattle, Portland, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Fresno, Long Beach, San Diego, and Honolulu.
The conterminous United States may be divided into seven broad physiographic divisions: from east to west, the Atlantic–Gulf Coastal Plain; the Appalachian Highlands; the Interior Plains; the Interior Highlands; the Rocky Mountain System; the Intermontane Region; and the Pacific Mountain System. An eighth division, the Laurentian Uplands, a part of the Canadian Shield, dips into the United States from Canada in the Great Lakes region. It is an area of little local relief, with an irregular drainage system and many lakes, as well as some of the oldest exposed rocks in the United States.
The terrain of the N United States was formed by the great continental ice sheets that covered N North America during the late Cenozoic Era. The southern edge of the ice sheet is roughly traced by a line of terminal moraines extending west from E Long Island and then along the course of the Ohio and Missouri rivers to the Rocky Mts.; land north of this line is covered by glacial material. Alaska and the mountains of NW United States had extensive mountain glaciers and were heavily eroded. Large glacial lakes (see Lake Bonneville under Bonneville Salt Flats; Lahontan, Lake) occupied sections of the Basin and Range province; the Great Salt Lake and the other lakes of this region are remnants of the glacial lakes.
The East and the Gulf Coast
The Atlantic–Gulf Coastal Plain extends along the east and southeast coasts of the United States from E Long Island to the Rio Grande; Cape Cod and the islands off SE Massachusetts are also part of this region. Although narrow in the north, the Atlantic Coastal Plain widens in the south, merging with the Gulf Coastal Plain in Florida. The Atlantic and Gulf coasts are essentially coastlines of submergence, with numerous estuaries, embayments, islands, sandspits, and barrier beaches backed by lagoons. The northeast coast has many fine natural harbors, such as those of New York Bay and Chesapeake Bay, but south of the great capes of the North Carolina coast (Fear, Lookout, and Hatteras) there are few large bays. A principal feature of the lagoon-lined Gulf Coast is the great delta of the Mississippi River.
The Atlantic Coastal Plain rises in the west to the rolling Piedmont (the falls along which were an early source of waterpower), a hilly transitional zone leading to the Appalachian Mountains. These ancient mountains, a once towering system now worn low by erosion, extend southwest from SE Canada to the Gulf Coastal Plain in Alabama. In E New England, the Appalachians extend in a few places to the Atlantic Ocean, contributing to a rocky, irregular coastline. The Appalachians and the Adirondack Mountains of New York (which are geologically related to the Canadian Shield) include all the chief highlands of E United States; Mt. Mitchell (6,684 ft/2,037 m high), in the Black Mts. of North Carolina, is the highest point of E North America.
The Plains and Highlands of the Interior
Extending more than 1,000 mi (1,610 km) from the Appalachians to the Rocky Mts. and lying between Canada (into which they extend) in the north and the Gulf Coastal Plain in the south are the undulating Interior Plains. Once covered by a great inland sea, the Interior Plains are underlain by sedimentary rock. Almost all of the region is drained by one of the world's greatest river systems—the Mississippi-Missouri. The Interior Plains may be divided into two sections: the fertile central lowlands, the agricultural heartland of the United States; and the Great Plains, a treeless plateau that gently rises from the central lowlands to the foothills of the Rocky Mts. The Black Hills of South Dakota form the region's only upland area.
The Interior Highlands are located just W of the Mississippi River between the Interior Plains and the Gulf Coastal Plain. This region consists of the rolling Ozark Plateau (see Ozarks) to the north and the Ouachita Mountains, which are similar in structure to the ridge and valley section of the Appalachians, to the east.
The Western Mountains and Great Basin
West of the Great Plains are the lofty Rocky Mountains. This geologically young and complex system extends into NW United States from Canada and runs S into New Mexico. There are numerous high peaks in the Rockies; the highest is Mt. Elbert (14,433 ft/4,399 m). The Rocky Mts. are divided into four sections—the Northern Rockies, the Middle Rockies, the Wyoming (Great Divide) Basin, and the Southern Rockies. Along the crest of the Rockies is the Continental Divide, separating Atlantic-bound drainage from that heading for the Pacific Ocean.
Between the Rocky Mts. and the ranges to the west is the Intermontane Region, an arid expanse of plateaus, basins, and ranges. The Columbia Plateau, in the north of the region, was formed by volcanic lava and is drained by the Columbia River and its tributary the Snake River, both of which have cut deep canyons into the plateau. The enormous Colorado Plateau, an area of sedimentary rock, is drained by the Colorado River and its tributaries; there the Colorado River has entrenched itself to form the Grand Canyon, one of the world's most impressive scenic wonders. West of the plateaus is the Basin and Range province, an area of extensive semidesert.
The lowest point in North America, in Death Valley (282 ft/86 m below sea level), is there. The largest basin in the region is the Great Basin, an area of interior drainage (the Humboldt River is the largest stream) and of numerous salt lakes, including the Great Salt Lake. Between the Intermontane Region and the Pacific Ocean is the Pacific Mountain System, a series of ranges generally paralleling the coast, formed by faulting and volcanism. The Cascade Range, with its numerous volcanic peaks extends S from SW Canada into N California, and from there is continued south by the Sierra Nevada, a great fault block. Mt. Whitney (14,495 ft/4,418 m), in the Sierra Nevada, is the highest peak in the conterminous United States.
The Pacific Coast, Alaska, and Hawaii
West of the Cascades and the Sierra Nevada and separated from them by a structural trough are the Coast Ranges, which extend along the length of the U.S. Pacific coast. The Central Valley in California, the Willamette Valley in Oregon, and the Puget
The forties are pretty well defined by World War II. US isolationism was shattered by the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor. As President Franklin D. Roosevelt guided the country on the homefront, Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower commanded the troops in Europe. Gen. Douglas MacArthur and Adm. Chester Nimitz led them in the Pacific. The successful use of an antibiotic, penicillin, by 1941 revolutionized medicine. Developed first to help the military personnel survive war wounds, it also helped increase survival rates for surgery. The first eye bank was established at New York Hospital in 1944. Unemployment almost disappeared, as most men were drafted and sent off to war. The government reclassified 55% of their jobs, allowing women and blacks to fill them. First, single women were actively recruited to the workforce. In 1943, with virtually all the single women employed, married women were allowed to work. Japanese immigrants and their descendants, suspected of loyalty to their homelands, were sent to internment camps.
There were scrap drives for steel, tin, paper and rubber. These were a source of supplies and gave people a means of supporting the war effort. Automobile production ceased in 1942, and rationing of food supplies began in 1943. Victory gardens were re-instituted and supplied 40% of the vegetables consumed on the home front. In April, 1945, FDR died, and President Harry Truman celebrated V-E Day on May 8, 1945. Japan surrendered only after two atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The United States emerged from World War II as a world superpower, challenged only by the USSR. While the USSR subjugated the defeated countries, the US implemented the Marshall Plan, helping war-torn countries to rebuild and rejoin the world economy. Disputes over ideology and control led to the Cold War. Communism was treated as a contagious disease, and anyone who had contact with it was under suspicion. Alger Hiss, a former hero of the New Deal, was indicted as a traitor and the House Un-American Activities Committee began its infamous hearings.
Returning GI's created the baby boom, which is still having repercussions on American society today. Although there were rumors, it was only after the war ended that Americans learned the extent of the Holocaust. Realization of the power of prejudice helped lead to Civil Rights reforms over the next three decades. The Servicemen's Readjustment Act, commonly known as the GI Bill of Rights, entitled returning soldiers to a college education. In 1949, three times as many college degrees were conferred as in 1940. College became available to the capable rather than the privileged few.
Television made its debut at the 1939 World Fair, but the war interrupted further development. In 1947, commercial television with 13 stations became available to the public. Computers were developed during the early forties. The digital computer, named ENIAC, weighing 30 tons and standing two stories high, was completed in 1945.
At the beginning of the Thirties the American 1930s cars had also foot boards, sunshades on the windscreen of the car, separate drum formed headlights and also rear lights attached to the car by connecting rods. American cars appeared with rounded edges, headlights build within the chassis of the car, but also the driving comfort improved. The radiator grille and shell were titled back slightly, which made the 1930s automobiles looking like more speedier. Affordable security glass was used as windscreens. Low pressure inner tube tires and also windscreen wipers appeared on the American cars during the Thirties mostly as safety measures.
These images, by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information, are some of the only color photographs taken of the effects of the Depression on America’s rural and small towns. The color digital photographs, scans of color transparencies, show the places of Depression Era America – the industry, the homes, the landmarks and the landscapes of a country emerging from the Great Depression and into World War II. All the caption information is taken from the original photographers and, where noted, was added to by the Library of Congress staff.
A cross roads store, bar, "juke joint," and gas station in the cotton plantation area, Melrose, Louisiana, June 1940. [Library note: Photograph shows sign on left building: Frenchies Beer Garden; above porch: Frenchies Bar.] (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Bean field under cultivation, Seabrook Farm, Bridgeton, N.J. June, 1942? (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C) #
View from the Skyline Drive, Virginia, ca. 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C) #
A woman painting a view of the Shenandoah Valley from the Skyline Drive, near an entrance to the Appalachian Trail, Virginia, ca. 1940.(Photo by Jack Delano, color slide Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
A mountain farm along the Skyline Drive in Virginia, ca. 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Cornshocks in mountain farm along the Skyline Drive in Virginia, ca. 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Mountain farm along Skyline Drive, Virginia, ca. 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Burning the autumn leaves in Norwich, Connecticut, November 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
A view of the old sea town, Stonington, Connecticut, November 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Potato farm in Aroostook County, Maine, after the potatoes had been harvested, October 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
A starch factory along the Aroostook River, Caribou, Aroostook County, Maine, October 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Factory buildings in Lowell, Massachusetts, December 1940 or January 1941. [Library note: Photo shows buildings later converted to a residential unit complex known as the Massachusetts Mills at the confluence of the Merrimack and Concord rivers, in Lowell, MA.] (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Brockton, Massachusetts, second-hand plumbing store, December 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Railroad cars and factory buildings in Lawrence, Massachusetts, January?, 1941. [Library note: Identified as Ayer Mill clock tower, Lawrence, Massachusetts. Previously identified as Lowell.] (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Douglas Shoe Factory, Spark St., Brockton, Massachusetts, ca. December 1940. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Train and several sets of railroad tracks in the snow, Massachusetts, December 1940 or January 1941. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Industrial town in Massachusetts, possibly New Bedford, ca. January 1941. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Landscape on the Jackson farm, vicinity of White Plains, Georgia, June 1941. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Christiansted, Saint Croix, Virgin Islands. Catholic [i.e. Anglican] Church, December 1941. [Library note: Photo shows St. John's Anglican Church, 27 King St.] (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Christiansted, St. Croix? Virgin Islands, December 1941. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
On the coast of Puerto Rico?, December? 1941. (Photo by Jack Delano, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Apartment houses near the cathedral in old part of the city, San Juan, December 1941. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Llano de San Juan, New Mexico, Catholic Church, July or October 1940. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Farmland in the vicinity of Mt. Sneffels, Ouray County, Colorado, October 1940. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Ouray, Colorado, October 1940. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Looking down the valley toward Ouray from the Camp Bird Mine, Ouray County, Colorado, October 1940. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Home of a fruit tree rancher, Delta County, Colorado, October 1940. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Flour mill, Caldwell, Idaho, July 1941. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
On main street of Cascade, Idaho, July 1941. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Milk and butter fat receiving depot and creamery, Caldwell, Idaho, July 1941. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Cherry orchards, farmlands and irrigation ditch at Emmett, Idaho, July 1941. (Photo by Russell Lee, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Wheat farm, Walla Walla, Washington, July 1941. (Photo by Russell Lee, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Shasta dam under construction, California, June 1942. (Photo by Russell Lee, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Lincoln, Nebraska, 1942. (Photo by John Vachon, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Church near Junction City, Kansas, 1942 or 1943. (Photo by John Vachon, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Road out of Romney, West Virginia, 1942 or 1943. (Photo by John Vachon, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Wisdom, Montana, April 1942. (Photo by John Vachon, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Cabin in southern U.S., ca. 1940. (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Copper mining and sulfuric acid plant, Copperhill, Tennessee, September 1939. (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
A train bringing copper ore out of the mine, Ducktown, Tennessee. Fumes from smelting copper for sulfuric acid have destroyed all vegetation and eroded the land, September 1939. (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Planting corn along a river in northeastern Tennessee, May 1940. (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Natchez, Mississippi, August 1940. [Library note: Photograph shows store or cafe with soft drink signs: Coca-Cola, Orange-Crush, Royal Crown, Double Cola, and Dr. Pepper.] (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Field of Burley tobacco on farm of Russell Spears, drying and curing barn in the background, vicinity of Lexington, Kentucky, September 1940. (Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Row houses, corner of N and Union Streets S.W., Washington, D.C., between 1941-1942. (Photo by Louise Rosskam, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Field with tree stumps, between 1941 and 1942. (Photographer unknown, color slide, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
General store, near Questa, Taos County, New Mexico, Spring 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Cerros, near Costilla, New Mexico, Spring 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Placita, New Mexico, on the Rio Pueblo, Spring 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Romeroville, near Chacon, Mora Co., New Mexico, Spring 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Plaza of Costilla, near the Colorado line, New Mexico, Spring 1943. [Photo shows the plaza of Costilla, New Mexico, on the east side of Route 522.] (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Chapel, Vadito, near Penasco, New Mexico, Spring 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
A farm, Bethel, Vermont, June 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Church along the Delaware River, New York, July 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
White Mountains National Forest, New Hampshire, June 1943. (Photo by John Collier, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
General view of a classification yard at C & NW RR's Proviso yard, Chicago, Illinois, December 1942. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
The giant 10 million bushel grain elevator of the Santa Fe R.R., Kansas, March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
General view of the city and the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad, Amarillo, Texas. Santa Fe R.R. trip, March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Grain elevators along the route of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad, Amarillo, Texas. MArch 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Farm land in Texas panhandle near Amarillo, Texas. Santa Fe R.R. trip, March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Amarillo, Texas, general view, Santa Fe R.R. trip, March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Santa Fe R.R. yard, Gallup, New Mexico, March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Passing a section house along the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe railroad, Encino vicinity, New Mexico. March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Indian houses and farms on the Laguna Indian reservation, Laguna, New Mexico. In the background is Mount Taylor. The Santa Fe R.R. crosses the reservation, March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Santa Fe R.R. line leaving Cadiz, California. This town is a junction point with a branch going to Phoenix, Arizona. March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency,Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Mojave Desert country, crossed by the Santa Fe R.R., Cadiz, California. March 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Illinois Central R.R., freight cars at the South Water Street freight terminal, Chicago, Illinois The C & O and Nickel Plate Railroads lease part of this terminal from the I.C.R.R. April 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Freight Depot of the U.S. Army consolidating station, Chicago, Illinois. April 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Loading a freighter with coal at one of the three coal docks owned by the Pennsylvania Railroad, Sandusky, Ohio. May 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Pennsylvania R.R. ore docks, unloading ore from a lake freighter by means of "Hulett" unloaders, Cleveland, Ohio. May 1943. (Photo by Jack Delano, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Partly finished open hearth furnaces and stacks for a steel mill under construction which will soon be producing vitally needed steel, Columbia Steel Co., Geneva, Utah, November 1942. (Photo by Andreas Feininger, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Old lead mines here have been reopened, Creede, Colorado. Creede for many years was "a ghost town," but has resumed the activities that made it an important lead producing center years ago, and is now producing much vitally needed metal for the war effort, December 1942. (Photo by Andreas Feininger, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Street scene, with building of the Southington News, Southington, Connecticut, May 1942. (Photo by Fenno Jacobs, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Street corner, Dillon, Montana. Dillon is the trading center for a prosperous cattle and sheep country. August 1942. (Photo by Russell Lee, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
First snow of the season in the foothills of the Little Belt Mountains, Lewis and Clark National Forest, Meagher County, Montana. August 1942. (Photo by Russell Lee, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Development at the site of the mill for the Mouat Chromite mine, Stillwater County, Montana. August 1942. (Photo by Russell Lee, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Looking north on Woodward Ave., from the Maccabee[s] Building with the Fisher Building at the far left, and the Wardell Hotel at the middle right, Detroit, Michigan. July 1942. (Photo by Arthur Siegel, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Hanna furnaces of the Great Lakes Steel Corporation, stock pile of coal and iron ore, Detroit, Michigan. November 1942. (Photo by Arthur Siegel, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Nearly exhausted sulphur vat from which railroad cars are loaded, Freeport Sulphur Co., Hoskins Mound, Texas. May 1943. (Photo by John Vachon, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
U.S. Supreme Court building, Washington, D.C. ca. 1943. (Photographer unknown, color transparency, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.) #
Meanwhile Back In Turbulent Europe
First pictures of the Japanese occupation of
Four Italian soldiers taking aim in Ethiopia in 1935, during the Second Italo-Abyssinian War. Italian forces under Mussolini invaded and annexed Ethiopia, folding it into a colony named Italian East Africa along with Eritrea. (LOC) #
Italian troops raise the Italian flag over Macalle, Ethiopia in 1935. Emperor Haile Selassie's appeals the the League of Nations for help went unanswered, and Italy was largely given a free hand to do as it pleased in East Africa. (LOC) #
Solemnly promising the nation his utmost effort to keep the country neutral, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt is shown as he addressed the nation by radio from the White House in Washington, Sept. 3, 1939. In the years leading up to the war, the U.S. Congress passed several Neutrality Acts, pledging to stay (officially) out of the conflict. (AP Photo) #
Riette Kahn is shown at the wheel of an ambulance donated by the American movie industry to the Spanish government in Los Angeles, California, on Sept. 18, 1937. The Hollywood Caravan to Spain will first tour the U.S. to raise funds to "help the defenders of Spanish democracy" in the Spanish Civil War. (AP Photo) #
Two American Nazis in uniform stand in the doorway of their New York City office, on April 1, 1932, when the headquarters opened. "NSDAP" stands for Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, or, in English, National Socialist German Workers' Party, normally shortened to just "Nazi Party". (AP Photo) #
About to be engulfed in a gigantic dust cloud is a peaceful little ranch in Boise City, Oklahoma where the topsoil is being dried and blown away during the years of the Dust Bowl in central North America. Severe drought, poor farming techniques and devastating storms rendered millions of acres of farmland useless. This photo was taken on April 15, 1935. (AP Photo) #
Florence Thompson with three of her children in a photograph known as "Migrant Mother." This famous image is one of a series of photographs that photographer Dorothea Lange made of Florence Thompson and her children in early 1936 in Nipomo, California. More on the photo here. (LOC/Dorothea Lange) #
The zeppelin Hindenburg floats past the Empire State Building over Manhattan on Aug. 8, 1936. The German airship was en route to Lakehurst, New Jersey, from Germany. The Hindenburg would later explode in a spectacular fireball above Lakehurst on May 6, 1937. (AP Photo) #
England's biggest demonstration of its readiness to go through a gas attack was staged, March 16, 1938, when 2,000 volunteers in Birmingham donned gas masks and went through an elaborate drill. These three firemen were fully equipped, from rubber boots to masks, for the mock gas "invasion". (AP Photo) #
Adolf Hitler of Germany and Benito Mussolini of Italy greet each other as they meet at the airfield in Venice, Italy, on June 14, 1934. Mussolini and his fascists put on a show for Hitler, but on the details of their subsequent conversations there was little news. (AP Photo) #
Four Nazi troops sing in front of the Berlin branch of the Woolworth Co. store during the movement to boycott Jewish presence in Germany, in March, 1933. The Hitlerites believe the founder of the Woolworth Co. was Jewish. (AP Photo) #
The Nazi booth at a radio exhibition which started in Berlin on August 19, 1932. The booth is designed as propaganda of the Nazi gramophone plate industry which produces only records of the national socialist movement. (AP Photo) #
Thousands of young men flocked to hang upon the words of their leader, Reichsfuhrer Adolf Hitler, as he addressed the convention of the National Socialist Party in Nuremberg, Germany on Sept. 11, 1935. (AP Photo) #
Adolf Hitler is shown being cheered as he rides through the streets of Munich, Germany, November 9, 1933, during the celebration of the 10th anniversary of the National Socialist movement. (AP Photo) #
Hitler youth honor an unknown soldier by forming a swastika symbol on Aug. 27, 1933 in Germany. (AP Photo) #
Thousand of Germans participate in the Great National Socialistic meeting in Berlin, Germany, on July 9, 1932. (AP Photo) #
A group of German girls line up to learn musical culture under auspices of the Nazi Youth Movement, in Berlin, Germany on Feb. 24, 1936. (AP Photo) #
Hitler's Nazi party convention, underway in Nuremberg, Germany, on Sept. 10, 1935. (AP Photo) #
America's Jesse Owens, center, salutes during the presentation of his gold medal for the long jump on August 11, 1936, after defeating Nazi Germany's Lutz Long, right, during the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin. Naoto Tajima of Japan, left, placed third. Owens triumphed in the track and field competition by winning four gold medals in the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes, long jump and 400-meter relay. He was the first athlete to win four gold medals at a single Olympic Games. (AP Photo) #
British Premier Sir Neville Chamberlain, on his return from talks with Hitler in Germany, at Heston airfield, London, England, on September 24, 1938. Chamberlain brought with him a terms of the plan later to be called the Munich Agreement, which, in an act of appeasment, allowed Germany to annex Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland. (AP Photo/Pringle) #
Members of the Nazi Youth participate in burning books, Buecherverbrennung, in Salzburg, Austria, on April 30, 1938. The public burning of books that were condemned as un-German, or Jewish-Marxist was a common activity in Nazi Germany. (AP Photo) #
Mass gymnastics were the feature of the "Day of Community" at Nuremberg, Germany on September 8, 1938 and Adolf Hitler watched the huge demonstrations given on the Zeppelin Field. (AP Photo) #
Windows of shops owned by Jews which were broken during a coordinated anti-Jewish demonstration in Berlin, known as Kristallnacht, on Nov. 10, 1938. Nazi authorities turned a blind eye as SA stormtroopers and civilians destroyed storefronts with hammers, leaving the streets covered in pieces of smashed windows. Ninety-one Jews were killed, and 30,000 Jewish men were taken to concentration camps. (AP Photo) #
View of one of the large halls of the Rheinmetall-borsig Armament factories at Duesseldorf, Germany, on August 13, 1939, where gun barrels are the main output. Before the start of the war, German factories were cranking out pieces of military machinery measured in the hundreds per year. Soon it climbed into the tens of thousands. In 1944 alone, over 25,000 fighter planes were built. (AP Photo) #
While newly-annexed Austria awaited the arrival of Adolf Hitler, preparations were underway. Streets were decorated and street names were changed. A workman in Vienna City square carries a new name plate for the square, renaming it "Adolf Hitler Place" on March 14, 1938. (AP Photo) #
Before And After The Periods Of War
View of an undamaged Polish city from the cockpit of a German medium bomber aircraft, likely a Heinkel He 111 P, in 1939. (Library of Congress)
|In 1939, the Polish army still maintained many cavalry squadrons, which had served them well as recently as the Polish-Soviet War in 1921. A myth emerged about the Polish cavalry leading desperate charges against the tanks of the invading Nazis, pitting horsemen against armored vehicles. While cavalry units did encounter armored divisions on occasion, their targets were ground infantry, and their charges were often effective. Nazi and Soviet propaganda helped fuel the myth of the noble-yet-backward Polish cavalry. This photo is of a Polish cavalry squadron on maneuvers somewhere in Poland, on April 29, 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|Associated Press correspondent Alvin Steinkopf broadcasting from the Free City of Danzig -- at the time, a semi-autonomous city-state tied to Poland. Steinkopf was relating the tense situation in Danzig back to America, on July 11, 1939. Germany had been demanding the incorporation of Danzing into the Third Reich for months, and appeared to be preparing military action. (AP Photo) #|
|Soviet premier Josef Stalin (second from right), smiles while Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov (seated), signs the non-aggression pact with German Reich Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop (third from right), in Moscow, on August 23, 1939. The man at left is Soviet Deputy Defense Minister and Chief of the General Staff, Marshal Boris Shaposhnikov. The nonaggression pact included a secret protocol dividing eastern Europe into spheres of influence in the event of a conflict. The pact now guaranteed that Hitler's troops would face no resistance from the Soviets if they invaded Poland, bringing the war one step closer to reality. (AP Photo/File) #|
|Two days after Germany signed the non-aggression pact with the USSR, Great Britain entered into a military alliance with Poland, on August 25, 1939. This photo shows the scene one week later, on September 1, 1939, one of the first military operations of Germany's invasion of Poland, and the beginning of World War II. Here, the German battleship Schleswig-Holstein is bombing a Polish military transit depot at Westerplatte in the Free City of Danzig. Simultaneously, the German Air Force (Luftwaffe), and ground troops (Heer) were attacking several other Polish targets. (AP Photo) #|
|German soldiers comb the Westerplatte after it was surrendered to German units from the Schleswig-Holstein landing crew, on September 7, 1939. Fewer than 200 Polish soldiers defended the small peninsula, holding off the Germans for seven days. (AP Photo) #|
Aerial view of bombs exploding during a German bombing run over Poland in September of 1939 (LOC) #
|Two tanks of the SS-Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler Division cross the Bzura River during the German invasion of Poland in September of 1939. The Battle of Bzura, the largest of the entire campaign, lasted more than a week, ending with the German forces capturing most of western Poland. (LOC/Klaus Weill) #|
|Soldiers of the SS-Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler Division, resting in a ditch alongside a road on the way to Pabianice, during the invasion of Poland in 1939. (LOC/Klaus Weill) #|
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A ten-year-old Polish girl named Kazimiera Mika mourns over her sister's body. She was killed by German machine-gun fire while picking potatoes in a field outside Warsaw, Poland, in September of 1939. (AP Photo/Julien Bryan) #
German advance guards and scouts are shown in a Polish town that has been under fire during the Nazi invasion of Poland, September 1939. (AP Photo) #
German infantry cautiously advance on the outskirts of Warsaw, Poland on September 16, 1939. (AP Photo) #
Several civilian prisoners of war, with arms raised, walk along a road during the German invasion of Poland in September of 1939. (LOC) #
Britain's King George VI broadcasts to the British nation on the first evening of the war, on September 3, 1939, in London. (AP Photo) #
|A conflict which would end with the dropping of two nuclear bombs began with a proclamation read aloud by a town crier. Acting Town Crier and Saltbearer of the City of London, W.T. Boston, reads the war proclamation from the steps of the Royal Exchange, in London, on September 4, 1939. (AP Photo/Putnam) #|
|A crowd reads newspaper headlines, "Bombs Rain On Warsaw" as they stand outside the U.S. State Department building where diplomats held a conference on war conditions in Europe, on September 1, 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|On September 17, 1939, the Royal Navy aircraft carrier HMS Courageous was hit by torpedoes from the German submarine U-29, and sank within 20 minutes. The Courageous, on an anti-submarine patrol off the coast of Ireland, was stalked for hours by U-29, which launched three torpedoes when it saw an opening. Two of the torpedoes struck the ship on the port side, sinking it with the loss of 518 of its 1,259 crew members. (AP Photo) #|
|The scene of devastation seen on Ordynacka Street in Warsaw, Poland on March 6, 1940. The carcass of a dead horse lies in the street among enormous piles of debris. While Warsaw was under nearly constant bombardment during the invasion, on one day alone, September 25, 1939, about 1,150 bombing sorties were flown by German aircraft against Warsaw, dropping over 550 tons of high explosive and incendiary bombs on the city. (AP Photo) #|
German troops marching into the city of Bromberg (the German name for the Polish city of Bydgoszcz) found several hundred German nationals dead from Polish sniper fire. The snipers were equipped with arms by the retreating Polish forces. Bodies are shown on a forest road, September 8, 1939. (AP Photo) #
|A damaged Polish armored train carrying tanks captured by the 14th SS-Leibstandard Adolf Hitler Division, near Blonie, during the invasion of Poland in September of 1939. (LOC/Klaus Weill) #|
|German soldiers, taken prisoner by the Polish army during the Nazi invasion, are shown while they were held captive in Warsaw, on October 2, 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|A young Polish boy returns to what was his home and squats among the ruins during a pause in the German air raids on Warsaw, Poland, in September of 1939. German attacks lasted until Warsaw surrendered on September 28. One week later, the last of the Polish forces capitulated near Lublin, giving full control of Poland to Germany and the Soviet Union. (AP Photo/Julien Bryan) #|
|Adolf Hitler salutes parading troops of the German Wehrmacht in Warsaw, Poland, on October 5, 1939 after the German invasion. Behind Hitler are, from left to right: Colonel General Walther von Brauchitsch, Lieutenant General Friedrich von Cochenhausen, Colonel General Gerd von Rundstedt, and Colonel General Wilhelm Keitel. (AP Photo) #|
|Earlier in 1939, Imperial Japanese army and naval units continued to attack and push forward into China and Mongolia. Here Japanese soldiers advance inland over the beach after landing at Swatow (Shantou), one of the remaining South China coast ports still under Chinese control at that time, on July 10, 1939. After a short engagement with the Chinese defenders the Japanese entered the city without encountering much further opposition. (AP Photo) #|
|On the Mongolian border, Japanese tanks roll across the vast plains of the Mongolian-Manchurian steppe, near the Mongolian border, on July 21, 1939. Manchukuo troops were reinforced by the Japanese when the border warfare with Soviet forces flared up suddenly in this sector. (AP Photo) #|
|A Japanese machine gun unit cautiously moves forward, past two Soviet armored cars abandoned in fighting along the Mongolian frontier in July of 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|On November 30, 1939, after Soviet demands made to Finland went unmet -- they were asking the Finns to give them land concessions and to destroy fortifications along the border -- the USSR invaded Finland. Some 450,000 Soviet soldiers crossed the border, starting a brutal, frozen battle that would be called the Winter War. In this image, a member of a Finnish anti-aircraft detachment, wearing his white camouflage uniform, works with a range-finder on December 28, 1939, during a Russian aerial attack. (AP Photo) #|
|A house burns furiously after being hit by a Soviet bomb during a Russian air raid on Turku, a port city in the southwest of Finland, on December 27, 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|In a frozen, wooded battlefront "somewhere in Finland," Finnish troops scatter to take shelter as Soviet planes fly over on an air raid on January 19, 1940. (AP Photo) #|
|Finnish soldiers, members of one of the ski battalions that fought against invading Russian troops, march with their reindeer on March 28, 1940. (Editor's note: this photo shows evidence of being retouched by hand, likely in an effort to boost sharpness and contrast) (AP Photo) #|
|Spoils of war -- captured Soviet tanks and cars, along a road in a snow covered forest on January 17, 1940. Finnish troops had just overpowered an entire Soviet division. (LOC) #|
|A Swedish volunteer, "somewhere in Northern Finland," protects himself from the sub-zero arctic cold with a mask over his face on February 20, 1940, while on duty against the Russian Invaders. (AP Photo) #|
|The winter of 1939-1940 in Finland was exceptionally cold. In January, temperatures dropped below -40° in some places. Frostbite was a constant threat, and the corpses of soldiers killed in battle froze solid, often in eerie poses. This January 31, 1940 photo shows a frozen dead Russian soldier, his face, hands and clothing covered with a dusting of snow. After 105 days, the Finns and Russians signed a peace treaty, allowing Finland to retain sovereignty, while it ceded 11 percent of its territory to the Soviets. (LOC) #|
|The German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee, in flames off Montevideo, Uruguay on December 19, 1939. The crew of the Admiral Graf Spee had just engaged in the Battle of the River Plate, after three Royal Navy cruisers hunted it down and attacked. The damage from the attack did not sink the German battleship, but sent it to a harbor in Montevideo for repairs. Unable to stay long enough for repairs, and unwilling to run a waiting blockade, the crew of the Admiral Graf Spee sailed a short distance out of port and scuttled the ship, seen here shortly before it sank. (AP Photo) #|
|Restaurant operator Fred Horak of Somerville, Massachusetts, put this sign on the window of his lunch room, shown March 18, 1939. Horak was a native of Prague, Czechoslovakia. (AP Photo) #|
|Curtiss P-40 Warhawk fighter aircraft being manufactured, likely in Buffalo, New York, ca 1939. (Editor's note, the AP caption for this photo was in error, previously stating these were Boeing bombers) (AP Photo) #|
|While German forces were concentrated on Poland, anxiety was rising on the Western Front, with French troops welcoming British soldiers as they deployed along the border with Germany. Here, French troops pose in a cantonment in France on December 18, 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|Vast masses of Parisians gathered at the Basilica Church of the sacred heart on the hill of Montmartre to attend a religious service and pray for peace. Part of the huge crowd gathered in front of the church in France on August 27, 1939. (AP Photo) #|
|Members of the French Army man an acoustic locator device on January 4, 1940. The device was one of many experimental designs, built to pick up the sound of distant aircraft engines and give their distance and location. The introduction and adoption of radar technology rendered these devices obsolete very quickly. (AP Photo) #|
|A party of newspaper men on the Western Front are shown atop one of the big forts somewhere in the Maginot Line, France, on October 19, 1939, with a French army guide pointing out to them the "no man's land" that separates the French and German troops. (AP Photo) #|
|British troops cheerfully board their train for the first stage of their trip to the western front, somewhere in England, om September 20, 1939. (AP Photo/Putnam) #|
|London's Westminster Bridge and the Houses of parliament, shrouded in darkness, after the great black-out began, on August 11, 1939. This blackout was the first trial conducted by the Home Office, in preparation for possible German air raids. (AP Photo) #|
|This was the scene at Holborn Town Hall, in London, England, as officials and mothers tested the reactions of babies to a respirator designed to protect them against poison gas on March 3, 1939. Several babies, all under the age of two, were fitted with the "baby helmets." (AP Photo) #|
|German Chancellor and dictator Adolf Hitler consults a geographical survey map with his general staff including Heinrich Himmler (left) and Martin Bormann (right) at an undisclosed location in 1939. (AFP/Getty Images) #|
|On Friday, Oct. 30, 2008, a man looks at a photograph of Johann Georg Elser, mounted on a monument in Freiburg, Germany. Elser, a German citizen, attempted to assassinate Adolf Hitler with a self-made bomb in the "Buergerbraukeller" beer hall in Munich on November 8, 1939. Hitler finished his speech early, escaping the timed explosion by just thirteen minutes. Eight people died, 63 were injured, and Elser was caught and imprisoned. Shortly before the end of World War II, he was executed in the Nazi concentration camp in Dachau. (AP Photo/ Winfried Rothermel) #|