Wednesday, December 7, 2011

70th Anniversary of the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor

On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, I thought I would share a couple of items from my collection. The postcard above depicts the Library at Schofield Barracks in Honolulu as it would have looked on December 7, 1941 when the attack occurred. Schofield Barracks which was home to the 25th infantry received only minor damage in the attack. The American Library Association played a much smaller role in providing reading material to our service men and women during World War II than in World War I. This was primarily because the Army and Navy considered the provision of library service one of their ongoing responsibilities (one of the legacies of ALA's World War I Library War Service). That there was (and continues to be) an Army run library at Schofield Barracks is evidence of this.  The envelope below was mailed by the Army Press in Atlanta, GA on December 30, 1941 to the Librarian of the Office of the Adjutant General for Indiana in Indianapolis, IN. The envelope promotes the purchase of Defense Bonds in three ways: the postage stamp, the postmark, and a "Remember !! Pearl Harbor" hand stamp. The postage stamp, one of three stamps in the 1940 National Defense issue, indicates four factors necessary for the defense of our nation: Security, Education, Conservation, and Health. The second and third stamps in the set add: Industry, Agriculture, Army, and Navy. One of the most unfortunate and deplorable aspects of the World War II conflict with Japan was the internment of Japanese Americans by the United States government about which I have written an earlier post.

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