Archive for '- World War II'
Today’s post comes from Ben Jordi, Public Affairs Specialist in Strategy and Communications, at the National Archives in College Park, MD.
Growing up, Clifton Truman Daniel never talked to his grandfather, Harry S. Truman, about his role in the war or the atomic bombings. “Our family met like any other family: on long weekends and holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving. And you were always careful about showing an interest in history or Grandpa would be sure to give you a lengthy history lesson,” says Daniel of his grandfather.
The Truman Presidential Library is filled with history lessons. One such lesson revolves around the atomic bombings of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. On August 6, 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb over the Japanese city of Hiroshima and three days later, on August 9th, another atomic bomb was dropped on the city of Nagasaki. The aftermath of the bombings left nearly a quarter of a million people dead. Survivors of the bombings were called hibakusha; literally translated as “explosion-affected people.”
When Daniel’s son Wesley was 10, his social studies teacher, Rosemary Barilla, did a series of lessons centered on the children’s book Sadako … [ Read all ]
Posted by Hilary on November 23, 2015, under - World War II, News and Events, Unusual documents.
Tags: 9/11 memorial, atomic bombings, Harry S. Truman, hibakusha, Hiroshima, Nagasaki, origami, paper cranes, Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, Sadako Sasaki, Truman Library
(Today’s post is from Jim Worsham, editor of Prologue magazine, the quarterly of the National Archives and Records Administration, and is based on a longer article in the Summer 2015 issue.)
President Harry S. Truman watched the clock closely, wanting to abide by the agreement to make the historic announcement at the same time as our Allies in London and Moscow.
At exactly 7 p.m. Eastern War Time on August 14, 1945, Truman revealed Japan’s response to the Allied demand for unconditional surrender.
The announcement the world was waiting for came just a few days after atomic bombs fell on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the opening shots in the nuclear era.
The emperor of Japan, the statement read, had agreed to unconditional surrender to the Allies. The President then appointed Gen. Douglas MacArthur supreme commander in Japan and the Pacific and who would officially accept Japan’s surrender September 2, 1945.
The euphoria that erupted May 8 when Truman announced the Germans … [ Read all ]
Today’s post comes from Darlene McClurkin, from the National Archives Exhibits staff.
On September 2, 1945, in a formal ceremony aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, Japan, representatives of the Japanese government signed this Instrument of Surrender, officially ending World War II.
The terms called for “the unconditional surrender to the Allied Powers of the Japanese Imperial General Headquarters and of all Japanese armed forces and all armed forces under Japanese control wherever situated.” However it also preserved the Japanese Imperial House.
Signing for Japan was Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu and General Yoshijiro Umezu, Chief of the Army General Staff.
General Douglas MacArthur, Commander in the Southwest Pacific, signed for the United States and accepted the surrender in his capacity as the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers.
Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz also signed for the United States.
Then representatives from eight other Allied nations signed, including the Republic of China, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union. The ceremony took less than 30 minutes.
After the Japanese Instrument of Surrender was presented to President Harry S. Truman at the White House on September 7, 1945, it was put on exhibit at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. … [ Read all ]
In celebration of National Dog Day, today’s post comes from Meagan Frenzer, graduate research intern for the National Archives History Office in Washington, DC.
The Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum maintains documents of critical participants within the FDR administration.
This list includes prominent figures such as Frances Perkins, Harry L. Hopkins, Henry Morgenthau, Jr., and, surprisingly, President Roosevelt’s dog, Fala.
The Scottish terrier became a national figure as President Roosevelt’s loyal, four-legged companion.
When his distant cousin Margaret “Daisy” Suckley gave the terrier as a Christmas gift in 1940, President Roosevelt renamed the terrier Murray the Outlaw of Falahill after his famous Scottish ancestor.
Shortened to “Fala,” the terrier accompanied the President on trips and attended key meetings, including the 1941 Atlantic Charter Conference.
Fala enjoyed entertaining international dignitaries and famous visitors with his tricks.
In his travels, Fala met British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, the Queen of the Netherlands, and Mexican President Manuel Camacho.
During World War II, Fala served as an honorary Army private and became the national president of Barkers … [ Read all ]
Posted by Jessie Kratz on August 26, 2015, under - World War II, Letters in the National Archives, National Archives History, National Archives Near You, Prologue Magazine.
Tags: Fala, FDR, FDR Presidential Library
Today’s post comes from Rebecca Brenner, an intern in the History Office at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.
In 1938 the von Trapp family singers were in danger.
Baron von Trapp, a heroic Austrian sea captain in World War I, declined a commission to serve in the naval forces of the Third Reich.
His eldest son, Rupert, likewise declined a request to serve as a doctor for the Nazis.
Finally, according to daughter Agathe von Trapp’s memoir, the singing family “refused in unison” an invitation to sing on the Munich radio in honor of Hitler’s birthday.
In 2005, Prologue magazine published an illuminating account of “The Real Story of the von Trapp Family,” which relied on immigration and citizenship records held in the National Archives at Boston.
Documents at the National Archives at College Park—in Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins’s immigration correspondence—build upon this story. These documents suggest that Perkins was instrumental in the immigration case of the von Trapp Family Singers.
In 1933, less than two months after the Nazis seized power in Germany, Perkins became Secretary of Labor. As Secretary, she oversaw the Immigration and Naturalization Service throughout the 1930s. Perkins’s immigration correspondence includes a … [ Read all ]