"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa.
WORLD WAR II
Years later a diver recovered and returned a pocket watch and photo album Leo had left in his footlocker aboard the ship. Leo became a member of the Pearl Harbor Survivors Association. (2)
The bombing of Pearl Harbor by the Japanese brought an end to anti-war speeches made by people like Archbishop Francis J.L. BECKMAN. Protest marches of conscientious objectors like those joined by Louise Herron HALLIBURTON disappeared. In the United States, Nazi sympathizers like Frederick Wilhelm KALTENBACH either left the country or grew silent. The United States Congress declared war on Japan. When Germany then declared war on the United States, Congress voted war against Germany.
Personal convictions of some healthy men kept them from enlisting. Some men objected on religious and moral grounds to participating in violence. In WORLD WAR I, many conscientious objectors had been jailed. (3) As World War II began, Congress, for the first time in history, recognized "CO Status" as a legitimate moral stand. Under the law, objectors had two choices — they could go into the military and serve in the medical corps or other non-combat duties, or they were required to do "alternative service" the the United States that was "work of national importance." At the University of Minnesota, Dr. Ansel Keyes — the inventor of K-ration meals for GIs — was commissioned to find out how millions of starving refugees in Europe and Asia could be brought back to health after the war. He asked for volunteers from conscientious objector units. Two-hundred COs volunteered and 36 were chosen for the project. The volunteers were starved, studied and then fed back to health. (4) BOY SCOUTS in Dubuque were among the first to be organized for relief efforts.
In May 1941 Mayor Frank VAN DUELMAN called a meeting of thirty-six local organizations to help establish a local unit of the United Service Organizations (USO). Those in attendance accepted the challenge of raising $7,000 to provide recreational and spiritual facilities for the young men and women directly affected by the national defense program. (5)Albert WHARTON. (6) A mass induction of Navy recruits was planned for August 23, 1942, prior to a baseball game scheduled for Navy Day. An entrance fee was charged with all money given to the Navy Relief Society. (7) Family members were later encouraged to write positive letters to their relatives in the armed forces and not to burden them with problems at home. (8)
Dubuquers enlisted in droves. The "Flying Kernels," a squadron of fliers from the tri-state area who trained in Glenview, Illinois and were inducted together in Moline, Illinois included Paul STRUEBER and Harold Kreamer of Dubuque. (9) "You can bet your last bottom dollar that if Uncle Sam has a war to be fought, this family of Meyers will be fighting it," was a statement quoted in the Telegraph Herald from Mr. and Mrs. N. J. Meyer who had five sons in the military in 1944. (10) Reverend Albert HOFFMAN became the most decorated American chaplain of the war and lost his left leg in Italy while helping a dying soldier. Among the heroes who received special comment were Harold E. HANTELMANN, John M. AUSTIN, Theodore Richards ELLSWORTH, Fredric L. GALLIART, Ray A. MILVERSTED, Robert L. MARTIN, Robert H. THELEN, Arthur C. TOEPEL, and George F. UNMACHT.
In addition to factory work, women joined the armed services and served at home and overseas. At the urging of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and women’s groups, and impressed by the British use of women in service, General George Marshall supported the idea of introducing a women’s service branch into the Army. In May 1942, Congress instituted the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps, later upgraded to the Women’s Army Corps, which had full military status. Its members, known as WACs, worked in more than 200 non-combatant jobs stateside and in every theater of the war. One inductee received special notice. Jeanne HARDIE qualified for officers' training in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps and therefore became the first Dubuque woman ever inducted into the military. (11)
The Office of Defense Transportation in June, 1942 took over wartime control of all the nation's inter-city bus operations. It ordered present routes frozen, competitive services pooled, and all express service discontinued effective July 1. After that, no buses could be operated "for the primary purpose" of serving golf courses, athletic fields, race tracks, theaters, dancing pavilions, or other places of entertainment. With the exception of one daily round trip, bus companies were also to end any routes on which less than 40% of the seating capacity of the buses was used. (12)
In 1943 the WAC-Air Recruiting Team came to Dubuque to interview applicants between the ages of 20 and 49 and without dependents or children under fourteen years of age. Those accepted would be trained at Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia before being assigned to an army base. Jobs available included control tower operator, link trainer instructor, weather observer, parachute rigger, and air-to-ground radio work.Robert J. BREITBACH, one of five Army Air Force men who perished in a crash of a B-17 bomber on the J.W. Seifker farm west of CENTER GROVE on February 8, 1944. The plane from Chanute Field, Rantoul, Illinois, was on a routine training flight with Breitbach as the pilot. The plane smashed through a tree before ramming into a hillside, exploding, and then bursting into flames. Father Aloysius SCHMITT made the supreme sacrifice helping others at Pearl Harbor.
Some Americans had already been serving the war effort. Thomas Masters, Jr. of Dubuque had joined the Royal Air Force (RAF) fighting to protect England when an article appeared about him in the Telegraph Herald. Involved in numerous raids over Germany and Gibraltar, he had been promoted to squadron leader by 1942. (13) Theodore Richards ELLSWORTH served as an officer in the King's Royal Rifle Corps of the British Army before transferring to the American Third Army. Captured, Ellsworth escaped in Poland. He finished the war as the highest decorated combat soldier in Dubuque history since the CIVIL WAR. His experiences became the basis of his book Yank: Memoir of a World War II Soldier (1941-1945)-From the Desert War of North Africa to the Allied Invasion of Europe. He received the Distinguished Service Cross.
Among the soldiers who fought were the men of Company A, First Battalion, 133rd Regiment of the 34th Infantry Division. In February 1941, 119 officers and enlisted men of Company A left the Armory at 9th and Iowa. The division was to become part of the first American Expeditionary Force (AEF) to be sent overseas. Among the first troops to go ashore in the invasion of North Africa and with 631 days of combat, the division had more fighting experience than any other in the United States armed forces. (14)
Their first combat was in Tunisia where Company A faced "The Desert Fox" General Erwin Rommel and his famed Afrika Corps and were badly defeated. Regrouped, they fought in the battle of Fondouk and then across the desert where they defeated Rommel at Hill 609. Company A then helped lead the charge down the Mateur Valley and onto the Bizerte Peninsula where more than 300,000 Germans were trapped and captured. (15)
Those Dubuquers who survived continued on in the invasion of Italy and the rugged mountain fighting up the peninsula. Nearly five years to the day they left, the remnants of the original Company A were honorably discharged. Many were then high-ranking non-commissioned officers with citations of bravery and many Purple Hearts. (16)
As early as July, 1941 Dubuque felt the effects of being overlooked for defense contracts. Burlington ranked first with more than half of Iowa's $121.6 million followed by Des Moines, Waterloo, Davenport, Cedar Rapids, and then Dubuque. Of the $955,904 awarded in contracts up to that date, nearly one-half had gone to the DUBUQUE BOAT AND BOILER WORKS. The remaining contracts had gone to KLAUER MANUFACTURING COMPANY, A.Y. MCDONALD MANUFACTURING COMPANY, and the DUBUQUE CONTAINER COMPANY. Sub-contracts had been awarded to the DUBUQUE PACKING COMPANY, General Dry Batteries and several of the local wood-working plants. (20)
In April 1942 the Dubuque City Council took steps to mobilize the residents of Dubuque in an effort to obtain more labor contracts for the war effort. Councilman George R. MURPHY moved that the council authorize Mayor Albert Wharton to take whatever steps he felt necessary. Wharton responded in May, 1942 with the formation of a War Industry Committee of labor and business interests which was to work with the Chamber of Commerce. (21) Compared with other cities in Iowa, Dubuque had received very little attention. Local employment had also been hurt when the War Production Board restricted building or plumbing manufacturing that was not ruled part of the war effort. It was agreed that all possible pressure be used on elected officials and that a survey of local industry be made to see what types of war work they could perform. (22) The efforts of the Chamber of Commerce were successful. Klauer Optical ground lenses for high-powered binoculars used for gauging tank and artillery fire. A.Y.MCDONALD MANUFACTURING COMPANY made gas nozzles, valves, and other products for the Navy and Air Force. FARLEY AND LOETSCHER MANUFACTURING COMPANY made thousands of wooden foot lockers, munitions boxes, and doors and windows for military barracks. DUBUQUE AWNING & TENT COMPANY manufactured canvas goods for the military.CIVIL DEFENSE control center. Those taking that course had completed courses in first aid, fire and gas defense and the first three hours of a general course. Three hundred people had already completed all these courses and were therefore already certified. When the instruction courses had been completed, those qualifying were assigned to various divisions of civilian defense work including fire watchers, air raid wardens, auxiliary firemen and policemen. Drill in these area would then begin. (23)
By 1945 employment locally in essential industries was strong with over 300 jobs available in January. GENERAL DRY BATTERIES needed battery workers, maintenance workers, inspectors, machinists, and car unloaders. A.Y.MCDONALD MANUFACTURING COMPANY had work for machinists, molder trainees, foundry workers and coremakers. CARR, ADAMS AND COLLIER COMPANY was looking for truck unloaders and men and women sawyer helpers. IOWA EGG PRODUCTS COMPANY wanted to hire candlers. Marsh Veneer and Lumber Company advertised for gun stock dippers, saw operators, and timber cutters and the DUBUQUE BOAT AND BOILER WORKS posted positions for boat yard workers, tack welders, and arc welders. (24)
The 'home front' was to play a major role in the war effort. Contributions to the United War Relief Fund were requested in June 1942. The goal of $33,500 from the city and county of Dubuque was to be divided between the USO ($17,500), Army Relief Fund ($3,500), Navy Relief Fund ($3,500), United China Relief Fund ($6,000) and $3,000 to an emergency relief fund to meet any other war relief calls that might develop during the war. (25)
Three hundred citizens of Dubuque and Dubuque County organized the Dubuque County War Relief Council. The purpose of the organization was to save the city and county the confusion of conflicting and overlapping fund-raising programs. The Council coordinated them, set dates, and by careful planning compress the activity into a single day. Frank Aloysius O'CONNOR was elected the chairman. Participation by the various fund-raising organizations was voluntary. (26)
Local women volunteered to do knitting and sewing for the American Red Cross. Between the beginning of the war in the Pacific on December 7, 1941 and December 21, 1941 the Dubuque County chapter sent 1,744 garments overseas to aid noncombatants. In late 1941 a quota had been accepted for clothing for American servicemen with the first going to those serving in the North Atlantic patrol. Announcements from Dubuque were similar to this one from Independence. (27)
Independence, Ia.—Eighteen boxes of articles, made by the Buchanan County Chapter of the American Red Cross, were shipped from here last week to the Midwest area headquarters at St. Louis, Mo.
Included in the shipment were 293 kit bags (filled) and knitted articles which consisted of 25 V-neck sweaters, 16 army helmets, 15 army mufflers, one pair of army gloves and one pair of army wristlets. Hospital articles were also included.
Dubuque's National Youth Administration sewing room project was reopened for girls between the ages of 19 and 24. The objective of the program was to teach girls how to operate the power driven sewing machines as a preliminary to obtaining work in war production projects. (28) See: GREAT DEPRESSION
The Dubuque County Red Cross located in the BANK AND INSURANCE BUILDING began the chapter's first nurses' aide course in June 1942. One of eight chapters in Iowa authorized by the national Red Cross for the program, the local chapter accepted registrations from June 15 to 20 from women between the ages of 18-50 who had a high school education or its equivalent and who passed a physical examination. Applicants also had to hold standard first aid certificates which required an additional 21 hours of training. Those accepted received 80 hours of instruction and 150 hours of work experience. (29)
Workers in the War Production room of the American Red Cross filled kits for soldiers leaving for the war. Each kit, 11 x 14 inches, contained a comb, envelopes and paper, pencil, cigarettes, double-edged razor blades, chewing gum, playing cards, shoe shine cloth, shoe laces, and a sewing kit with fifteen buttons of different sizes and colors. (30)
Training for civilian defense was first announced on June 21, 1942. Registrations for more than a dozen activities was held at DUBUQUE SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL, WASHINGTON JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL, LINCOLN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL, FULTON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, MARSHALL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL and FRANKLIN SCHOOL on June 22-23. Among the choices of service were: staff corps (office work), drivers, messengers, rescue squads, auxiliary police, bomb squad, wardens, fire watchers, auxiliary firemen, demolition squads, road repair, decontamination squads, emergency food and housing, emergency medical work, nurses' aides, and first aid. (31) There was some shock when only 985 showed up on the first night. The second night was much better with 2,000 volunteers.
Schools were used for more than registering volunteers. In June 1942 letters of congratulations were sent to teachers, directors and boys in the industrial arts shops of Dubuque's high school from Jessie M. Parker, state superintendent of public instruction and J. P. Street, state director of a model airplane construction project. The War and Navy Departments and civilian defense groups had requested six hundred model airplanes be built to aid in aircraft identification programs. Dubuque had been given a quota of 100 planes and exceeded this by 500. (32) An inspection board was organized in Dubuque to thoroughly examine the models before they were sent to Washington, D. C. The models were also displayed in store windows and public buildings to give recognition to the students who made them. (33)
Pre-aviation classes were offered during the day in the high school. In June 1942 an evening session was added and the summer program was extended. Available to young men 18 to 27 years of age, the program was intended for those interested in becoming pilots, navigators, or bombardiers in the Army or Navy air forces. (34) In April 1942 the Dubuque airport and staff were put at the disposal of the United States Army which within sixty days trained ten local men as flight instructors. This was part of a nationwide program designed by the Civil Aeronautics Administration to have 4,000 instructors ready for military service. (35)
Pilots in northeastern Iowa quickly showed interest in the organization of the Civil Air Patrol. The first meeting took place on January 2, 1942. A nationwide program, the air patrol along the coasts actually patrolled the skies. Midwestern members would be used for ferrying airplanes and training new pilots. (36) In 1942 Father Michael J. Martin, president of LORAS COLLEGE, signed a contract with the United States Navy, through the Civil Aeronautics Administration War Training Service, for the college to participate in training aviation cadets in Navy V-1, V-5, and 4-7 programs. The V-5 Program ended at Loras on August 1, 1944 after training 252 men. (37)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IMpRIdRx0wQ) American Red Cross "minute speakers," on one occasion in January, 1942, spoke to the audiences in all movie theaters on Saturday night and Sunday about a drive to raise $20,000. Companies agreed to sound whistles at a given hour to remind workers to go to money collection sites. Even school children were offered opportunities to feel they were playing an important part in defending their country. In "pencil rooms," where students purchased needed supplies, they were able to buy stamps to place in their stamp album. After reaching a total of $18.75, they were able to exchange the album for a War Savings Bond. All of the 115 employees at the Dubuque Boat and Boiler Works signed up to have ten percent of their wages deducted toward the purchase of the bonds. This allowed the company to fly both the Honor Roll and the 10 Percent Club flags of the United States Treasury Department. Each employee also received a 10 Percent pin. (38) Thomas M. STAMPFER, the Dubuque County chairman, said that six hundred volunteers who worked on the 1942 drive were volunteering again to work in 1943. (39)
War bond sales continued throughout the war. The Sixth War Bond Drive was started on November 20, 1944. The Dubuque County quota was $6,023,000 which was about a half million dollars less than the previous drive. (40)DUBUQUE VISITING NURSE ASSOCIATION auxiliary and senior board, and members of the YWCA club. (42)
Beginning in June, 1942 the YOUNG MEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION (Y.M.C.A.) announced that it was making an appeal for athletic equipment and musical instruments. Under provisions of the Geneva Convention, both the Axis powers and our allies requested the World's Alliance of YMCAs provide recreational, educational, cultural, and religious activities for prisoners of war in as many as six hundred prison camps. (43)
The public library made its own unique contributions. To aid in the writing of the history of Dubuque County in the war, the library compiled lists of names of every man or woman entering military service. This information and any news of this person was kept on file cards. Clippings were made of every organization's efforts at helping our troops or their families at home and book drives were conducted for soldiers. It was announced in June 1942 that the library would remain open until 9:00 p.m. for the duration of the war. This allowed people to "increase their knowledge to help in the war effort, to understand and combat subversive influences, and to prepare for the peace to follow." (44)
Preparedness was taken seriously. The experience of our ships being sunk at Pearl Harbor destroyed the comfort Americans felt being surrounded by wide oceans. Fear of attacks on the United States led to the JULIEN DUBUQUE BRIDGE being painted gray to make it difficult to see from the air. (45) In February 1942, the Dubuque AIRPORT became the first in Iowa to receive its war emergency designation from the Civil Aeronautics Administration. This ensured that the airport remained open but it had to have armed guards around-the-clock, a complete alarm system, and clearance officials. (46)
Home owners were advised by the Office of Solid Fuels Coordination in April to begin stockpiling coal for the winter months. (47) When stockpiling turned into hoarding, the Office of Price Administration warned that hoarding gasoline was "unpatriotic" and posed a serious fire hazard. (48) By 1943 service stations were not allowed to be open more than 72 hours each week. Those inclined to hoard sugar were warned that "most people with large supplies of sugar on hand were known to their neighbors." People not honestly reporting the amount of sugar they had at home were subject to severe penalties. (49) Homeowners were urged to insulate their homes. (50) Home canning courses to encourage the growing and preservation of food began in the spring of 1942. (51) On July 1, 1942 all residents taking civilian defense courses were urged to attend "Fighting the Fire Bomb," a film reviewing fire and gas defense, shown in the auditorium of Dubuque Senior High. (52)
The first day nursery for the children of Dubuque mothers employed in war work was opened at AUDUBON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL at the end of November, 1942. Children aged 2-4 were eligible and parents were assured that those in charge would be qualified. Activities were carefully supervised and included morning and afternoon rest periods, supervised play, and nutritious meals. Personnel for the day nursery were provided through federal funds of the Works Progress Administration. Space was provided by the Dubuque Board of Education and equipment was purchased with funds donated by the the Lions Club and local industries involved in defense work. Operational expenses above that paid by parents were provided through contributions of the Battery Workers Union, DUBUQUE TRADES AND LABOR CONGRESS, American Legion, Kiwanis Club, Rotary Club, and the Elks Club. (53) In 1944 a USO club was established at 7th and Main by the Kiwanis Club with donations from individuals and groups. (54)
In May 1942 a practice "blackout" was carried out by the officials of the Dubuque Civilian Defense Corps. According to the plan, the Civilian Defense office in Des Moines would flash the order to Davenport, the air raid warning center for this district. Davenport would immediately notify the sheriffs of the six county region. The sheriffs would contact the commanders of the Civilian Defense Corps in each community. Commanders notified all division chiefs who would contact their own units. The "alert" would be given in plenty of time for Civilian Defense workers to reach their posts. The first official blackout was scheduled in Dubuque on December 14, 1942 for an area including Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North and South Dakota, and Wyoming. The event began at 10:00 p.m. Central War Time and lasted for twenty minutes. (55)
Blackout tests were taken seriously. On July 31, 1943 the cases in Nashua, Iowa against three alleged violators of the city's blackout ban were heard in court. The three were charged with neglecting to extinguish their lights or provide adequate coverings for their windows. All three had placed on file and charged court costs. (56)
A type of "blackout" had been applied to the news business almost from the beginning of the war. The Office of Censorship (OOC) published its rules to be followed by the press and the radio in case of enemy air attack. Among the rules there would be "no premature reporting of diplomatic negotiations or conversations." Articles would not mention any ship movements or movements of enemy planes. Broadcasters were warned not to describe bombings precisely enough so that the enemy could tell what they hit. (57)
Regulations affected the clothing industry. In April 1942 the War Production Board (WPB) issued provisions that no slacks, riding breeches, jodhpurs, ski suits, play suits, or overalls were to be manufactured with matching hats, bags, scarves, hoods, shawls, belts or shoes. Evening dresses could not be sold with matching jacket, bolero, cape or coat at one price. Restrictions also included sleeve length. (58) Shaving habits of men were changed in May 1942 when the WPB banned the sale of all safety razors then under control of manufacturers and jobbers and ordered their delivery to the military. (59)
The War Production Board in May, 1942 froze all stocks of electric ranges held by manufacturers, distributors, and retail dealers. Sales of these machines were by military priority although ranges already in transit on May 5th could be delivered. Production of new machines was prohibited after June 1st except for military priority. (60)
Rationing was a part of every citizen's life. In Dubuque as elsewhere coffee and sugar were rationed using Ration Book 1. Rationing of other goods was expected to begin in February, 1943.
Rationed Goods in the USA During the Second World War (62)
A wide variety of commodities were rationed during World War II in the United States. Rationing ended when supplies were sufficient to meet demand. Rationed Items Rationing Duration Tires January 1942 to December 1945 Cars February 1942 to October 1945 Bicycles July 1942 to September 1945 Gasoline May 1942 to August 1945 Fuel Oil & Kerosene October 1942 to August 1945 Solid Fuels September 1943 to August 1945 Stoves December 1942 to August 1945 Rubber Footwear October 1942 to September 1945 Shoes February 1943 to October 1945 Sugar May 1942 to 1947 Coffee November 1942 to July 1943 Processed Foods March 1943 to August 1945 Meats, canned fish March 1943 to November 1945 Cheese,canned milk, fats March 1943 to November 1945 Typewriters March 1942 to April 1944
Recipients of Ration Book 2 had several obligations. First, they had to fill out and sign a "Consumer Declaration" form stating the amount of goods they currently had on hand. Heavy penalties were assessed any one filing a false statement. Home canned goods were not included. Second, they had to have with them all Ration Book 1s assigned to their home. Third, the amount of coffee at home as of November 1942 had to be stated. Once these obligations were fulfilled, they received a Ration Book 2 for each member of the household regardless of age.
Ration Book 2 contained two colors of stamps. Red stamps applied to meat while blue stamps were used for canned goods. Since meat was not yet rationed, blue stamps were used first. Each stamp had both a letter and a number. The letter indicated when the stamp had to be used. The number showed its value. The letters ran A-Z (I and O were omitted). Each letter appeared on four stamps. There were 96 blue stamps in each book. One of the four stamps with each letter had a number 8, one carried a 5, one carried a 3, and one stamp carried the number 1.
Stamps were used in three letter groups. Stamps A-B-C were used during one period. The length of a ration period was announced by the Office of Price Administration (OPA). Since each letter appeared on four stamps, a total of twelve stamps could be used during each ration period. During a ration period, an individual would have three 8-point stamps, three 5-point stamps, three 3-point stamps and three 1-point stamps. There would therefore by a 48 point total for each ration period. Abundant foods carried low points needed to purchase them. The OPA listed point values of different foods in the newspaper and the information was posted in grocery stores. Points would be the same although the price charged in different stores could vary.
Records were carefully kept on who received ration books. Relatives of those who had died or joined the military were required to return their books to the local ration board. The "loss" of ration books posed serious problems. The Dubuque Ration Board was ordered to strictly follow regulations which stated there was a sixty day waiting period before issuing new books. Ration books which were found were to be returned to their owner. The unlawful use of ration books was subject to severe penalties.
Material vital to the war effort was collected. In June 1942, President Franklin Roosevelt appealed to every citizen to turn in "every bit of rubber you can possibly spare." Articles collected ranged from old tennis shoes to tires. Citizens participating were paid one cent per pound for the scrap when it was deposited at area gas stations. One of the largest contributions came from Martin Straub whose collection of 4,429 pounds of old automobile tires represented a hobby. He earned $44.29. (63) Some service station owners organized collections on their own or organized boys living in the area to help. (64) At the end of the three-day national campaign, the Dubuque contribution of rubber to the war effort totaled twelve tons. (65) The next drive came on July 12, 1942 when collections of brass, iron, LEAD, and fats was announced. (66) On February 8, 1943 as collections continued, Dubuque theaters cooperated with other Iowa theaters in offering free motion picture tickets for those bringing in one pound or more of brass, copper or bronze to donate to the war effort. (67)INTERSTATE POWER COMPANY agreed to supply some of the needed equipment. Money raised from the sale of the estimated 282 tons of metal was given to the W.P.A. (68)
Paper collections in 1942 went well until a "bottle-neck" developed in the mills and the city lacked a place to store papers collected. People were asked to keep the newspapers and magazines in their homes until the call could be resumed. (69) Paper collections continued as shown by one held in October, 1944. Trucks provided by several Dubuque firms, Dubuque County, the City of Dubuque and the Iowa Highway Department were staffed by boys from the DUBUQUE BOYS' CLUB and the BOY SCOUTS. Paper bags with twelve feet of strings had been distributed by both groups earlier. Residents were asked to have bundles of paper tied and placed on the curb by noon for collection. (70)
The first rubber collection in Dubuque looked impressive until matched to the 60 ton quota given to the city by the federal government. (71) Quotas were assigned by the federal government for things collected and to items supplied to the nation. In May 1943, as an example, the quota for tires for Dubuque County and others in the Des Moines District was sharply reduced. Quotas for Dubuque County were 214 Grade I (new) tires; 296 Grade III (used or recapped) tires; 146 truck tires; and 35 farm tractor and implement tires. There were no restrictions regarding repairing or recapping passenger tires because only reclaimed rubber was used in the process. Office of Price Administration officials were quoted as saying due to the extreme scarcity of natural rubber, it was essential that tires be recapped as many times as possible in order to reduce the demand for new tires. As early as June 1942, D. C. Johnson, assistant to the rationing officer for Iowa, believed trucks would be forced off the roads "in the not too distant future" as a result of a tire shortage. (72) Seeking to meet its quota, Dubuque continued its rubber drive and by June 21st could report a total of 70 tons being collected. (73)
The need for rubber led the War Production Board (WPB) in 1943 to select five midwestern cities to make rubber from grain alcohol. Dubuque, one of the cities, The five cities were expected to produce 6 million gallons of alcohol annually which would be enough with plants already in operation to meet industrial needs. (74)
Gasoline rationing led to suggestions in 1942 of "staggering" working hours for many of Dubuque's industries. INTERSTATE POWER COMPANY officials believed that such an idea might be needed due to the halting of automobile production, tire and gasoline rationing, and increased interest in mass transportation caused by a recent reduction in fares to five cents. Everyone could not ride on available buses at the same time. People living outside of town were encouraged to form "car clubs" to come into town together. (75)
Bicycle transportation also fell under quotas. In July the Office of Price Administration in Washington announced a quota of 230,000 bicycles to be manufactured between July 9th and August 31, 1942 for essential users and war production workers. Only 180,000 of these bicycles would be provided to the states. The others would be held in reserve in cases where proof could be offered that need exceeded the quota. To purchase a bicycle, an individual had to prove:
1. They must travel quickly or often to deliver merchandise and such deliveries could be done more rapidly than walking. 2. They had to walk at least three miles going to and from work while using public transportation. 3. They had to wait at least 1 1/2 hours in walking and waiting time and the bike would save at least thirty minutes. 4. Available public transportation was overcrowded. 5. A bicycle was needed for other reasons. (76)
Inter-city bus transportation was taken over by the Office of Defense Transportation in June 1942. "Inter-city" was defined as excluding runs within fifteen miles of city limits and schedules on which the average fare was thirty-five cents or less. Present routes were frozen, competitive service pooled, and all express service discontinued. No inter-city bus transportation would be permitted "for the primary purpose" of serving golf courses, athletic fields, track races, theaters, dancing pavilions, or "other places conducted primarily for the purpose of amusement or entertainment." Bus companies had to end all routes on which the bus was not at all times filled to at least 40% capacity. (77)
At home “food will win the war” was an important slogan. Individual families were encouraged to plant a VICTORY GARDEN. Iowa farmers had three times as much responsibility in the war food production area as any other farmer in the United States according to the Agricultural Extension Service at Iowa State University. The average farmer produced enough for his own family and three other families. The Iowa farmer produced enough for his own family and nine other families. (78) In 1930 Iowa’s farm products had a value of $690,302,406 and there were 214,928 farms. In 1945 the number of farms had decreased to 208,934 but the value of the crops had risen to $1,232,010,705. (79)
Dubuque's meat packers saw a brisk business as early as 1942. From April 30th through May 13th, the Agricultural Marketing Administration purchased 795,000 pounds of pork, 201,600 pounds of lard, and 81,000 pounds of dried eggs. The purchases were made for the Lend-Lease Program aimed at our allies, school lunch programs, Red Cross needs, and distribution to assistance groups. The Iowa Egg Products of Dubuque received 95.5 cents per pound for the dried eggs. (80)
The involvement of the railroads in World War II started even before Pearl Harbor. On March 11, 1941, America implemented its Lend Lease program, in which equipment, including that of the railroads, was sent to the aid of the Allies. Russia alone received 1,900 steam engines and 50 diesel engines. (81) During mobilization, America's railroads were called upon to transport troops and military equipment. They were also called upon to operate several small lines used on military bases and installations. By the end of the war, the railroads had moved 91% of all military freight within the country and 98% of all military personnel. (82) Even though by the end of the war, 351,000 of their employees had joined the war effort, the workforce of the railroad companies actually increased from 1,140,000 in 1941 to 1,420,000 in 1945 through the hiring of women and minorities. (83)
River transportation saw tremendous growth between November 1943 and the spring of 1944. Described as the largest fleet of towboats and barges in the history of river transportation, the flotilla was estimated to have 5,000 barges and 1,000 towboats. An estimated 95% of river traffic related to the war effort. (84)
Issues created by women holding jobs usually occupied by men caused issues during the war that carried well beyond the end of battle. GENERAL DRY BATTERIES reached its peak employment with 1,100 women and 500 men. Women began work by sweeping. This continued until one by one they were chosen for other work. Men, for example, were often given work with machines while women were assigned to assembly jobs. Women who did the same work as men found themselves earning less for the same work.
As early as 1942 harassment of women was noticed in the workplace. The following appeared in the Dubuque Herald as part of a syndicated article:
They have to get over the old masculine notion that when a woman tackles a job that is not considered "ladylike" it is alright to make a pass at her.
There is no place in the present set-up for any such notion as that. Instead men owe it to women who are helping win this war by filling men's shoes to be more gentlemanly, and more courteous than usual. (85)
Giving youth and adults at home a diversion from the war was a task of the Dubuque Recreation Commission. While the north-end Comiskey Center was an established social center, programs were begun at Lincoln and Marshall elementary schools. At Comiskey, a variety of recreational games were offered in the gym including basketball, volleyball, and badminton. The game room provided TABLE TENNIS and board games. An adult physical fitness class met at Marshall. Lincoln added a movie to its program in 1944 and dancing was scheduled for all the centers. (86)
Labor Day in 1944 was held on Saturday evening to allow workers who would be on production lines on the holiday a chance to participate. City and county offices were closed, but four Dubuque factories essential to the war effort remained open. These companies were GENERAL DRY BATTERIES, MORRISON BROTHERS COMPANY, ADAMS COMPANY (Encyclopedia Dubuque), and the National Gypsum Company.(87)
As the end of the war began to be seen, the questions of conversion to a peace-time economy began to be asked. For the J. P. SMITH SHOE COMPANY manufacturing plant the outlook appeared bright. In 1944, 60% of the shoes manufactured by the plant were destined for the U. S. Navy which tended to be higher priced and better quality. Company officials believed that people had become accustomed to purchasing this style under rationing and would therefore continue to be customers. With eleven million men and women returning to the states and needing civilian shoes, the future looked bright. (88)
One of the major benefits to veterans of World War II was the "Servicemen's Readjustment Act", better known as the "G.I. Bill." President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed it in 1944 before the war ended. The law gave the following benefits: (89)
education and training opportunities loan guarantees for a home, farm, or business job-finding assistance unemployment pay of $20 per week for up to 52 weeks if the veteran couldn't find a job priority for building materials for Veterans Administration Hospitals.
For many, the educational opportunities were the most important part of the law. World War II veterans were entitled to one year of full-time training plus time equal to their military service, up to 48 months. The Veterans Administration paid the university, trade school, or employer up to $500 per year for tuition, books, fees and other training costs. Veterans also received a small living allowance while they were in school. (90)
In December 1945 the president of the Dubuque Kiwanis Club assured the members that he had learned the city administration would begin in the spring to purchase and install street signs. The purchase of the signs had been postponed during the war due to a shortage of materials. (91)
Many veterans of the war were years later given the opportunity to participate in HONOR FLIGHT DUBUQUE.
1. "Leo F. Greenwood," Linwood Legacies. Online: http://www.linwoodlegacies.org/leo-f-greenwood.html
3. First World War.com Online: http://www.firstworldwar.com/atoz/conscientiousobjectors.htm
4. NebraskaStudies.org Online: http://www.nebraskastudies.org/0800/frameset_reset.html?http://www.nebraskastudies.org/0800/stories/0801_0107.html
5. "Dubuque USO Unit Organized," Telegraph Herald, May 29 1941, p. 3
6. Telegraph Herald, July 13, 1941
7. "Plan Mass Induction on 'Navy Day,'" Telegraph Herald, August 2, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420802&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
8. "Send Cheerful Letters to Service Men," Telegraph Herald, July 24, 1942, p. 3. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420724&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
9. "Two 'Dubuque Kernels' in Advanced Training," Telegraph-Herald, June 9, 1942, p. 5. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420609&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
10. "Brothers State Surprise," Dubuque Telegraph-Herald, September 10, 1944. Online: http://iagenweb.org/wwii/WWII_Brothers/Dubuque.html
11. "Commissioned," Telegraph Herald, October 14, 1942, p. 23
12. "Order by ODT Takes Effect on July First," Telegraph-Herald, June 9, 1942, p. 1
13. "Dubuquers' Son Flying With RAF," Telegraph-Herald, June 14, 1942, p. 2
14. Key, Harley P. "Dubuquers Had Their Own 'Storm," Telegraph Herald, March 6, 1991, p. 4A
17. "American Women in World War II," History Channel. Online: http://www.history.com/topics/world-war-ii/american-women-in-world-war-ii
20. "Dubuque Now Sixth in Iowa Defense Work," Telegraph-Herald, July 24 1941, p. 1
21. "Mayor Picks War Industry Committee," Telegraph Herald, May 13, 1942, p. 12
22. "Fears Effects on City of Curtailment of Non-Work Work," Telegraph Herald, April 22, 1942, p. 2
23. "200 to Take OCD Control Center Work," Telegraph-Herald, July 5, 1942, p. 4
24. "Brisk Demand for War Help," Telegraph Herald, January 15, 1945, p. 11
25. "Still Time to Cast a War Relief 'Vote'", Telegraph-Herald, June 10, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420610&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
26. "War Council is Launched by 300 Here," Telegraph-Herald, April 24, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420424&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
27."Independence Red Cross Ships 13 Boxes," Mason City Globe-Gazette, July 30, 1944. Online: http://iagenweb.org/wwii/WWII_IowaVolunteers/RedCross_Buchanan.html
28. "Nurses' Aid Enrollments Are Sought," Telegraph-Herald, June 14, 1942, p. 5
29. "360 Red Cross Kits Ready," Telegraph-Herald, June 6, 1942, p. 3. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420607&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
30. "NYA Sewing Project to be Reopened," Telegraph-Herald, July 2, 1942, p. 3
31. "OCD Classes Open Monday," Telegraph Herald, June 21, 1942, p. 1
32. "City's Work in Model Plane Building Hailed," Telegraph Herald, June 21, 1942, p. 17
33. "Local Students to Build Them," Telegraph Herald, March 1, 1942 p. 33
34. "Plan Evening Pre-Flight Courses Here," Telegraph-Herald, June 11, 1942, p. 5.
35. "Ten Selected as CAA-Army Trainees Here," Telegraph-Herald, April 23, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420423&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
36. "Outline Aims of Civil Air Patrol Here," Telegraph Herald, January 20, 1942, p. 9
37. "Navy V-5 Ends Loras College Program Aug. 1," Telegraph-Herald, May 14, 1944, p. 13. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19440514&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
38. "Boat Workers Here Patriotic," Telegraph-Herald, July 16, 1942, p. 5. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420716&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
39. "Dubuque's War Bond Quota to be $5,180,630," Telegraph-Herald, February 4, 1943, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19430204&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
40. "Drive to Open Here Nov. 20 For 6 Million," Telegraph-Herald, November 12, 1944, p. 11.
41. "Stores Close for One Hour for Big Event," Telegraph-Herald, June 28, 1942, p. 1
42. "Sale of Stamp Corsages Set," Telegraph-Herald, July 9, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420709&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
43. " 'Y' Seeking Equipment for Prisoners of Japs," Telegraph-Herald, June 28, 1942, p. 1
44. "Library to Stay Open Until 9 'For Duration,' Telegraph-Herald, June 14, 1942, p. 17
45. Odegard, Laura. "Link," Telegraph Herald, Nov. 1, 1991, p. 44. Online: http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=dBBeAAAAIBAJ&sjid=B2ANAAAAIBAJ&pg=3378,370382&dq=dubuque+wagon+bridge+opening&hl=en
46. "Local Airport Gets War OKED," Telegraph-Herald, Feb. 17, 1942, p. 3. Online: http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=5TpFAAAAIBAJ&sjid=lLsMAAAAIBAJ&pg=4533,5476882&dq=dubuque+airport&hl=en
47. "Build Up Coal Reserves Now," Telegraph-Herald, April 5, 1942, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420405&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
48. "OPA Warns Against Gasoline Hoarding," Telegraph-Herald, May 3, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420503&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
49. "Last Minute Advice to Sugar Registrants," Telegraph-Herald, May 3, 1942, p. 2. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420503&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
50. "Conserve Fuel by Insulating," Telegraph-Herald, April 12, 1942, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420412&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
51. "Four Canning Meets Booked," Telegraph-Herald, April 12, 1942, p. 6, 1942. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420412&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
52. "Special OCD Film to be Shown Here," Telegraph-Herald, July 1, 1942, p. 2 Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420701&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
53. "War Work 'Orphans' To Have Nursery Here," Telegraph Herald, November 15, 1942, p. 2
54. "Plan Program for Opening of USO Club," Telegraph Herald, July 9, 1944, p. 21
55. "1st Blackout for Dubuque Set Dec. 14," Telegraph Herald, November 15, 1942, p. 2
56. "Blackout Violators' Cases Placed on File Upon Payment of Costs," Nashua Telegraph, July 31, 1943, p. 1
57. "Revise Rules of Censorship," Telegraph Herald, June 26, 1942, p. 6. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420626&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
58. "WPB Freezes Dress Sizes," Telegraph Herald, April 8, 1942, p. 2. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420408&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
59. "WPB Bans Sale of All Safety Razors," Telegraph-Herald, May 24, 1942, p. 2. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420524&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
60. "WPB Freezes Stoves, Ranges," Telegraph Herald, May 3, 1942, p. 18
61. "Government Pegs Prices at March Levels," Telegraph-Herald, April 29, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420429&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
62. "Rationed Items In the USA During the Second World War." Online: http://www.ameshistory.org/exhibits/ration_items.htm
63. "Dubuquers Comb Homes for Rubber," Telegraph Herald, June 15, 1942, p. 1
64. "Rubber Drive Going Well in Dubuque," Telegraph Herald, June 16, 1942, p. 1
65. "Dubuque's 3-Day Total of Rubber in 12 Tons," Telegraph Herald, June 17, 1942, p. 1
66. "New Scrap Drive to Start Here," Telegraph Herald, July 12, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420712&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
67. "Copper, Brass Gets You In," Telegraph Herald, February 2, 1943, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19430202&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
68. "To Dig Up Street Car Rails Here," Telegraph Herald, September 27, 1942, p. 2
69. "Dubuque's 3-Day..."
70. "Trucks Provided For Scrap Paper Drive," Telegraph Herald, October 18, 1944, p. 9
71. "Old Rubber Sought Here in New Drive," Telegraph-Herald, June 7, 1942, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420607&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
72. "Iowans Cut Down Their Speed," Telegraph Herald, June 14, 1942, p. 2
73. "No Company Profits in Rubber Drive," Telegraph Herald, June 21, 1942, p. 2. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420621&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
74. "WPB Selects City as Site for Project," Telegraph Herald, March 4, 1943, p. 1
75. "Car Clubs One Solution," Telegraph-Herald, June 14, 1942, p. 10
76. "Bicycle Quota is Set Up by OPA," Telegraph-Herald, July 3, 1942, p. 3. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420703&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
77. "Order by ODT Takes Effect on July First," Telegraph-Herald, June 9, 1942, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420609&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
79. "Iowa Farmer's Role Tripled in Wartime," Telegraph-Herald, April 19, 1942, p. 8. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420419&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
80. "Big Purchases by AMA Here," Telegraph-Herald, June 8, 1942, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420608&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
81. "Women and Railroads in World War II," Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, Online: http://www.rrmuseumpa.org/about/rrpeopleandsociety/women2.shtml
84. " 'Good Ole River Days' Debunked by Experts," Telegraph Herald, November 7, 1943, p. 7
85. Millett, Ruth. "We, the Women," Telegraph-Herald, July 2, 1942, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19420702&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
86. "Play Centers Attract Many," Telegraph Herald, October 22, 1944, p. 18
87. "4 Plants Run on Labor Day," Telegraph Herald, September 1, 1944, p. 19
88. "No Problem at Shoe Company With War's End," Telegraph-Herald, November 12, 1944, p. 11+
89. "The G.I. Bill," Wessels Living History Farm, Online: http://www.livinghistoryfarm.org/farminginthe40s/life_20.html
91. "Getting New Street Signs," Telegraph-Herald, December 27, 1945, p. 13
See: DOGS FOR DEFENSE