Archive for the ‘Primary Sources’ Category

This is Lindbergh’s diary entry about figh

Monday, November 26th, 2012

“My tracers and my 20’s spatter on his plane.”

Lindbergh kept a diary describing the day he shot down his only enemy fighter. We join his story as he flies with a squadron of four P-38 “Lightning” fighters to attack a Japanese airfield on an island near New Guinea. Below them they see two enemy aircraft and prepare to attack:

“July 28

We jettison our drop tanks, switch on our guns, and nose down to the attack. One Jap plane banks sharply toward the airstrip and the protection of the antiaircraft guns. The second heads off into the haze and clouds. Colonel MacDonald gets a full deflection shot on the first, starts him smoking, and forces him to reverse his bank.

We are spaced 1,000 feet apart. Captain [Danforth] Miller gets in a short deflection burst with no noticeable effect. I start firing as the plane is completing its turn in my direction. I see the tracers and the 20’s [20mm. cannon] find their mark, a hail of shells directly on the target. But he straightens out and flies directly toward me.

I hold the trigger down and my sight on his engine as we approach head on. My tracers and my 20’s spatter on his plane. We are close – too close – hurtling at each other at more than 500 miles an hour. I pull back on the controls. His plane zooms suddenly upward with extraordinary sharpness.

I pull back with all the strength I have. Will we hit? His plane, before a slender toy in my sight, looms huge in size. A second passes – two three – I can see the finning on his engine cylinders. There is a rough jolt of air as he shoots past behind me.

By how much did we miss? Ten feet? Probably less than that. There is no time to consider or feel afraid. I am climbing steeply. I bank to the left. No, that will take me into the ack-ack fire above Amahai strip. I reverse to the right. It all has taken seconds.

My eyes sweep the sky for aircraft. Those are only P-38’s and the plane I have just shot down. He is starting down in a wing over – out of control. The nose goes down. The plane turns slightly as it picks up speed-down-down-down toward the sea. A fountain of spray-white foam on the water-waves circling outward as from a stone tossed in a pool-the waves merge into those of the sea-the foam disappears – the surface is as it was before.

P-38 Lightning

My wingman is with me, but I have broken from my flight. There are six P-38’s circling the area where the enemy plane went down. But all six planes turn out to be from another squadron. I call ‘Possum 1,’ and get a reply which I think says they are above the cloud layer. It is thin, and I climb up through on instruments. But there are no planes in sight, and I have lost my wingman. I dive back down but all planes below have disappeared, too. Radio reception is so poor that I can get no further contact. I climb back into the clouds and take up course for home, cutting through the tops and keeping a sharp lookout for enemy planes above. Finally make radio contact with ‘Possum’ flight and tell them I will join them over our original rendezvous point (the Pisang Islands).

The heavies are bombing as I sight the Boela strips; I turn in that direction to get a better view. They have started a large fire in the oil-well area of Boela – a great column of black smoke rising higher and higher in the air. The bombers are out of range, so the ack-ack concentrates on me-black puffs of smoke all around, but none nearby. I weave out of range and take up course for the Pisang Islands again. I arrive about five minutes ahead of my flight. We join and take up course for Biak Island. Landed at Mokmer strip at 1555.

(Lieutenant Miller, my wingman, reported seeing the tracers of the Jap plane shooting at me. I was so concentrated on my own firing that I did not see the flashes of his guns. Miller said the plane rolled over out of control right after he passed me. Apparently my bullets had either severed the controls or killed the pilot.)”

Lindbergh’s account appears in: Lindbergh, Charles, A., The Wartime Journals of Charles A. Lindbergh (1970); Berg, A. Scott

Primary Source Week 13

Monday, November 19th, 2012

This is a prime example of a World War II propaganda poster. The poster tells people to buy war bonds and stamps in order to defeat the Fascist Nazi’s.

University of Montana, Montana Museum of Arts & Culture, “WWII Propaganda Posters,” 1943. Accessed November 18, 2012.

Primary Source 9

Monday, November 19th, 2012

This is a World War II propaganda film made in 1942. Superman takes part in the war effort to destroy parts of Japan. Clark and Lois are imprisoned reporters and Superman gets the Japanese ruffled up. He knocks their ships into the ocean. He takes down the ships so easily; a whole American ship could do the same. It shows that Americans need to take an active participation in the war. (video) “Superman: Eleventh Hour.” (accessed November 18, 2012).

National Guard

Monday, November 19th, 2012

The National Guard is preparing to leave for Summer Camp in 1939. It is interesting to note that their hats were wide brimmed and their pants were tucked into their shoes. I wonder if they dressed that way for safety and practical reasons.

Primary Source

Monday, November 19th, 2012

My interviewee Ms. Mills and her family were affected by the construction of Fort A.P. Hill. Her family lived on a farm which became part of the military base and they were forced to move from their home. This photo shows some of the original construction on the base in June 1942. Many civilians lost their homes and farm land to the government due to land use for the base.

Primary Source-Week 13

Monday, November 19th, 2012

Murrow Broadcast

I found this on I picked this because Ruby talked about hearing Edward R. Murrow’s broadcasts during the war, although not in detail. I think to fully understand radio, you have to try to listen to things. The way Murrow presents this broadcast from London, he’s trying to allow the listener to visualize what London may look like. The actual broadcast is interesting because of Murrow’s ability to transport the listener to London. Also, the broadcast is relatively short, which helps listeners because Americans are not known for their long attention spans. I am curious to know; how did Murrow decide what he would talk about each broadcast? Was he under pressure to keep glimmers of hope for people? I know Ruby talked about how she always hoped to see her husband in newsreels at the movies, but never did.

Primary Source 9

Monday, November 19th, 2012

This picture below is directed toward Americans and their belittlement of the Japanese. It labels the trap material conservation to prod at the Japanese behavior and how we were involved with them at one point.,r:16,s:0,i:172

Week 12 Primary Source

Monday, November 19th, 2012

The picture below shows a 21 year old African American woman working during World War 2.  During World War 2 more opportunities were given to African Americans and women than any other time before the war.  I selected this picture due to my group project being based around the workforce during World War 2.

Show-Business at War (1943)

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

This short film showed how the entertainment industry participated in the war effort. Although it was distributed by 20th Century Fox, this “March of Time” newsreel was a collaboration between studios, directors, and actors.


Week 13 Primary Source

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

These pictures are on the National Archives website. The URL link to see these pages is: The significance of these pictures works well in conjunction to Richard Smith’s article, Analytic Strategies for Oral History Interviews. In his article, Smith brings up the interviewee’s and interviewers memories and historical accurateness of gender stereotypes. Smith uses the term “born rebels” to describe women who were born before and after 1900 who believed they were “capable workers with instinctive or natural-know-how, a convention that preserved traditional patriarchal and artisanal values.” (714)
These series of pictures show women working competently in what was preconceived as more masculine roles before WWII.