“In England they are known as “The Few”, the pilots who defended their country from Nazi aerial assault in the Battle of Britain during World War II. Among “The Few,” whose ranks numbered approximately 3000, Paul Farnes was one of the last surviving. And of those who remained, he was believed to be the only ace, or aviator with the distinction of downing five or more enemy aircraft.” Read full story here.
Documents and interviews, released by BBC History, include plans to replace Big Ben’s chimes with a recorded version in the event of an air attack. This would ensure the Germans did not know their planes were over Westminster. BBC programmers would also play music to contact Polish freedom fighters. Read full story, with videos and link to the website here.
“A World War II oral history project is now available to the world. The original recordings were digitized and posted online with the help of a $6,700 grant awarded by the Ohio History Fund to the Center for Archival Collections at Bowling Green State University.” Read fully story with link to project here.
David Watt was working in a menswear store in Palmerin St, Warwick when he was called up to serve in World War II. He was 18 years old and, like the rest of his mates, thought the whole affair would be over in a couple of months. Mr Watt’s personal account of his time at war will be added to hundreds of other veterans’ stories as part of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs Oral History Project. For full story click here.
A new website has been created to collect the memories of Papua New Guineans who experienced World War II. See full story here.
For many American families, the Great Depression and Dust Bowl struck like swift punches to the gut. New Deal work relief programs like the Works Progress Administration tossed lifelines into the crushing economic waves, but many young people soon started looking farther west for more stable opportunities. Read full article and watch video interview excerpts here.
Oral history is the collection of the reminiscences of ordinary people as a valued part of the story of a time or an event told from the perspective of those who were caught up in it rather than from the view of the elite that orchestrated it. For full article click here.
After Pearl Harbor, the United States went to war, and Seattle became a total blackout town – no lights anywhere at night. Spotters scanned the skies and scoured the waters of Puget Sound, looking for Japanese war planes and submarines. People of Japanese descent were sent to internment camps inland. Soon, everything became scarce, from butter to sugar to cloth. And Seattle’s industries mobilized to produce the machines of war, with women leading the charge to build them. For full story click here.
A new exhibit at the Dorval Museum of Local History and Heritage brings the bloody conflict to life with stories and souvenirs from some of Dorval’s own veterans. Survival and Resilience: A Tribute to World War II Veterans showcases artifacts belonging to more than a dozen veterans as well as a video featuring first-person accounts from three local veterans, still living and now in their 90s. See full story and watch video here.