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Home Front



In the 1940s, news of the war was in the hearts and on the minds of every household member, from the oldest to the youngest. Everyone participated in scrap drives and war bond campaigns. Everyone knew the importance of rationing as it related to the war effort. Everyone watched the government-generated newsreels in the local movie houses, and they sat close to the radio to hear the latest news from the various theaters of war. Area newspapers carried information about local boys and girls who were a part of our nation’s military. Victory posters were everywhere. Service flags hung in windows. Men and women in uniform were treated with deference.

The American home front during the Korean War was far different. Following so close on the heels of World War II, the Korean War was not a popular war. Those who had experienced the hardships of the previous war were sick and tired of sacrifice, both in terms of sons lost in battle, as well as doing without and making do because there was a war going on. The president of the United States didn’t even want to mention the word "war", so he called America’s involvement in the Korean hostilities a "police action." This misnomer caused apathy among the public, so much so that generally only those families who had someone directly involved in the war actually cared that a war was, indeed, going on. "Where have you been, Mac?" was the question of the day when a veteran returned home from Korea. Then and now, the American people had no understanding of the significance of the Korean War, nor did they understand the horrors that were taking place in it or the hardships that our servicemen and women had to endure while serving in Korea.

Many books have been written on the subject of the home front during World War II. Few, if any, books can be found on the same subject when it comes to the Korean War. This page of the Korean War Educator draws attention to aspects of the Korean War home front. Our readers are invited to send additional information for inclusion on this page. Send your home front information and photographs to: Lynnita Brown, 111 E. Houghton Street, Tuscola, IL 61953 or e-mail lynnita@koreanwar-educator.org . Contact Lynnita by phone at 217-253-4620 (evenings) or 217-253-5171 (days).

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