Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Blackout - December 1942

It’s beginning to look a lot like…darkness. This public service announcement in the Springfield (Massachusetts) Daily News reminds us about the blackout procedure for tonight. First the horn will sound, next the street lights will go out. Next another short blast and all traffic should stop, all lights in private homes and businesses should be extinguished. Finally, the all clear horn will sound. Hopefully.

And all freakily juxtaposed next to the announcement “20 shopping days till Christmas!”

December 1942, and we remember our priorities.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Dinner at the Sheraton, Springfield, Massachusetts

December 25, 1941, with the U.S. only two weeks into its involvement in World War II, the future might have been forboding, but no rationing or shortages had struck us yet.  It would be, if not the last peacetime Christmas, then the last Christmas of pre-war style celebration. 

Here at the Sheraton Hotel in Springfield, Massachusetts, Christmas Dinner, a spread of several courses from fruit cup to appetizers such as chopped chicken livers, to soups, to the main course, your choice of several (roast turkey, baked whole lobster, etc.), green salad of iceberg lettuce and your choice of French, Rocquefort or Thousand Island dressing.  Desserts include mince pie, green apple pie, pumpkin pie, or Indian pudding.  Something also called a Santa Claus Parfait, as well as lemon or raspberry sherbet.

All yours for two bucks.  In the decades since we've gone less regional with our dining choices and with much less plain fare.  The changes in price, well, we won't go there.  Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

December Sale at Steiger's, Springfield, Massachusetts

On sale at Steiger's, downtown Springfield, Massachusetts in December, 1941.  Got to get those "socks for skating" for 39 cents a pair. 

For more on Steiger's, have a look here.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Palmer, Mass. boy at Pearl Harbor

Springfield Daily News, December 8, 1941

Frank A. Hryniewicz, of Palmer, Massachusetts got his name in the paper 69 years ago. He was a member of the crew of the USS Oklahoma, and he held rank of Seaman First Class.

His ship was sunk in Pearl Harbor, and he died along with over 400 of his shipmates. Today, his name can be found on the USS Oklahoma Memorial, which was dedicated only three years ago today in 2007.

Remember Frank today, and remember Pearl Harbor.