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Today in World War II History

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Posts Categorized: WWII Articles

Gasoline Rationing in World War II. On Sarah Sundin's blog

Make It Do – Gasoline Rationing in World War II

Although rationing was an important part of life in America during World War II, the US government was apprehensive about gasoline rationing. As a symbol of freedom of movement, the automobile represented everything American, and politicians feared riots and rebellion if they curtailed that freedom. Gasoline Shortage In early 1942, German U-boats ravaged Allied shipping off the US East Coast and in the Gulf of Mexico... Read Article
Of Terns & Planes: An Island, A Bird, and a Little-Known WWII "Battle," on Sarah Sundin's blog

Of Terns and Planes

In July 1942, the armies of democracy battled the armies of totalitarianism, but a smaller battle raged between US Army Engineers and a little bird called the sooty tern. While researching the Army engineers for my novel With Every Letter (Revell, 2012), I ran into an intriguing little story in Barry Fowle’s Builders and Fighters: US Army Engineers in World War II (Fort Belvoir VA: Office of History, US Army ... Read Article
Victory Mail in World War II, on Sarah Sundin's blog

Victory Mail in World War II

Letters in World War II During World War II, letters were essential to the health of relationships. Soldiers and sailors who shipped overseas couldn’t make phone calls, and of course, e-mails and text messages hadn’t been invented. That left letters. The average soldier wrote six letters a week. Those letters took anywhere from 1-4 weeks to cross the ocean to the United States. Each letter received at home assure... Read Article
Make It Do - Scrap Drives in World War II

Make It Do – Scrap Drives in World War II

  Perhaps nothing represents the community-minded patriotism of the US Home Front in World War II better than the scrap drive. Enemy conquests cut off supplies of crucial raw materials such as tin and rubber, and the need for products made from these materials skyrocketed due to the war. Since useful materials often ended up in the trash can or languished unused in homes and on farms, the War Production Board en... Read Article
Sugar Rationing in World War II

Make It Do – Sugar Rationing in World War II

What could be more American than Hershey bars, homemade cookies, and birthday cake? During World War II, these items were hard to come by in the United States. Short on Sugar When the Japanese conquered the Philippines in the early months of 1942, the United States lost a major source of sugar imports. Shipments from Hawaii and Central and South America had to be curtailed 50 percent as cargo vessels were diverted fo... Read Article
Make It Do - Metal Shortages in World War II

Make It Do – Metal Shortages in World War II

Imagine going to the store and not finding batteries, thumbtacks, alarm clocks, or paper clips on the shelves. During World War II, metals were needed for military purposes. Ships and planes and jeeps and guns and ration tins and helmets took precedence over civilian products. After the United States entered the war, factories quickly shifted from manufacturing civilian goods to military matériel. Preparation for Wa... Read Article
Make It Do - Clothing in World War II, on Sarah Sundin's blog

Make It Do – Clothing in World War II

During World War II, the United States didn’t ration clothing as the United Kingdom and many other nations did, but restrictions were applied, and fashions adapted to use less fabric. Why Clothing? Eleven million men and women served in the US military during the war, and they all needed uniforms. This strained the country’s supply of fabric, particularly wool, and the garment manufacturing system. Since Japan pr... Read Article

Winter in Wartime Paris

Bonjour! We may not be able to travel to France this year, but we’d like to invite you to journey across France with us through our World War II novels. I’m teaming up with Melanie Dobson and Liz Tolsma (two of my favorite authors!) for the Winter in France Giveaway from January 22-29, 2022! We’re kicking off today, January 22, with a Facebook Live event on Liz Tolsma’s page at 10 am PST/1 p... Read Article
Books in World War II, on Sarah Sundin's blog

Books in World War II

Books in World War II Books and reading played a vital and surprising role in World War II in the United States, involving civilians in the war effort, increasing morale in the military, and spreading democratic values at home and abroad. When the United States entered World War II in 1941, the average American soldier had an eleventh-grade education and didn’t read for pleasure. Hardback books cost $2, which were ... Read Article

Make It Do – Tire Rationing in World War II

During World War II, rationing was a large part of life on the United States Home Front. Tires were the first items to be rationed. Rubber Shortage The Japanese conquered the prime rubber producing nations of Malaya and the Dutch East Indies from January to March of 1942, eliminating 91% of America’s rubber supply. Since cargo ships were needed for military purposes, the ability to import rubber from South Amer... Read Article