. . . Buying a $25 bond for $18.75 would equal more than half a week’s wage for the average American1 Eight out of thirteen Americans bought bonds during the war, a total of $185.7 billion dollars.2 The support coming from the home front was the advantage America had over its enemies.
"ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK - BUY WAR BONDS"
ALEC YOUNT and CASEY WILLIAMS
GROUP II, TEAM 4
Our poster displays a powerful image of American troops storming the beach. There are massive warships in the background and bombers flying overhead. This poster, printed in 1942, can teach us [a great deal] . . . about the time period . . . . Everything from the actual subject matter, to the role of War Bonds, to symbolism and the historical context of the posters, can give insight into the past and allow us to pry into the mindset of an average American in 1942.
Numerous weapons and machines of war are depicted in the poster. The soldiers storming the beach are carrying the famous M1 Garand .30 caliber rifle, the M1, standard issue rifle of the U.S. Army from 1936 to 1957, hailed by General George S. Patton as "a magnificent weapon, the most deadly rifle in the world.”3
Symbolism and Icons
The B-26 Marauders flying overhead embody the promise in the new technology of the American military . . . the troops’ rifles and machine guns symbolize the capability of the United States and its ground forces.3
Current and Historical Context / Message
It can be very hard to truly understand the gravity of the situation [in 1942]; even the events of 9/11/01 cannot … measure up to the crisis in America immediately following the attack on Pearl Harbor. These posters were used to advertise war bonds, but also to help improve morale.
1Global security. “US Rifle, Cal. .30, M1, Garand,” Global Security online. Available from http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/ground/m1garand.htm; 10/21/06
2About Military History. “Home Front 1941-1945: Buy War Bonds,” About online. Available from http://militaryhistory.about.com/od/worldwari1/a/warbonds_4.htm; 9/26/06
3”A People at War,” National Archives and Records Administration Online http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/a_people_at_war/science_pitches_in/john_garand_and_m1.html (accessed October 21, 2006)