The Co-Ed Goes to War by Katherine Hill (1942)

The Co-Ed Goes to War by Katherine Hill (1942)

From the December 1942 issue of Carolina Magazine:

Carolina MagazineTHE Carolina coed is going to war. Shoved into relative obscurity by the more immediate problem of expanding the Pre-Flight school, temporarily subordinated to the outcome of the 18-19-year-old draft legislation, the question of the coed’s status in Carolina’s war college, her ultimate fate in the university’s new educational system is at last coming into the limelight.

The accelerating tempo of the war has brought an unprecedented challenge to every woman in every college and university in the country, and women students here, as their sister students elsewhere, are demanding answers to their questions, “What is going to happen to us? Will we be allowed to remain at Carolina? Where will we go next year — or next quarter even?”

The actual truth of the matter is — nobody knows.

Rumors as to what the future holds for the coed have flown from Graham Memorial to Woollen gym, back across by the naval area and up through the quadrangle. The most famous of these came from a small campus group which divulged the confidential information that all coeds were to be packed in the proverbial lock, stock and barrel manner and sped to the fair city of Greensboro where they would be allowed to pursue their various studies beneath the quiet and pensive oaks on ye olde Woman’s College campus. Upon receipt of this choice bit of news the irate populace of Alderman, McKeever and Archer House promptly made frantic plans for revolution should execution of such a threat be attempted.

Next rumor on the hit parade, eventually squelched by the inhabitants of Kenan, Spencer and the sorority houses, had it that coeds would be kicked off the campus, bounced out of town, chased beyond the county limits, and there left to shift for themselves, preferably in the direction of an East Carolina tobacco patch or a New England airplane factory.

From the office of the dean of the War College comes the only official word on the subject of coeds and their place in the future of the university. The statement issued by Dean Bradshaw is brief almost to the point of disappearance. “We know nothing definite. Your officials are in constant touch with the proper authorities and as soon as we learn anything at all conclusive we will immediately pass it on to the student body. The main problem facing us at this time is where we can house eight bundled women when the Pre-Flight school takes over their dormitories.” He did not say if the Pre-Flight school takes over the dormitories.

In the meantime, the war goes on. What are the coeds, as an integral part of the student body, going to do?

In the first place, at the end of this quarter there must, of necessity, be a complete reconsideration of the academic program for women. In order to remain as students at Carolina, women will have to adapt their scholastic schedules to meet the demands of the speeded up war program. In place of excessive liberal art courses must come classes in mathematics, sciences, foreign languages, and social services. Training in fields branded as temporarily unnecessary will be slashed to a minimum; concentration will be on the nation’s needs in health fields, in diplomatic services and special investigations, in scientific research, in business and industry and in trained personnel for schools and colleges.

The increasing- urgency for preparing women now for what lies immediately ahead cannot be stressed too emphatically. Dr. Edward C. Elliott, Chief of the Division of Technical and Professional Personnel of the War Manpower Commission, recently stated, “All women college students are under obligation to participate directly either in very necessary community service, in war production or in service with the armed forces.”

By no means does this indicate that sight is being lost of the values of education, especially of the college education; it is held at a premium. There is no retraction of nor lessening of emphasis on the statement that the reservoir of educated leadership must be maintained. For those upon whose shoulders will fall the tremendous responsibility of solving the peace there must be a thorough understanding of the social, economic, political and intellectual forces which characterize this war period.

But before peace comes the war. (more…)

15-Year-Old Sailor Fears School More than War (1943)

15-Year-Old Sailor Fears School More than War (1943)

Walter Moravsky Was In Action Before His Real Age Was Discovered

YONKERS, N. Y., July 3. (AP) – Walter Moravsky, 15-year-old Yonkers schoolboy with eight months’ Navy service and an honorable discharge is worried now. He’s afraid he won’t be promoted in school.

His service included five months on an aircraft carrier before his commanding officer finally found out he was 15 instead of the required 18.

Worrying Walter was the thought that he might be put back in the eighth grade. Torpedoes, Machine gun fire and bomb bursts – including one that gave him a nasty shrapnel wound – didn’t bother him much, he said.

He is six feet tall and husky for his age.

During his service he advanced to seaman first class. Until battle stations was sounded, he was a baker. Then he was a gunner. He was on deck firing at the Japs when he got the shrapnel wound.

Source: The Plain Speaker (Hazleton, Pennsylvania) – Saturday, July 3, 1943

Anna C. Ladd and the Camouflaging of Mutilated Faces

Anna C. Ladd and the Camouflaging of Mutilated Faces

Wonderful Work Being Done to Hide Hideous and Shattered Features the Surgeons Cannot Help

“Camouflage of Mercy” is the term by which many describe the work being carried on by Anna C. Ladd, the sculptor, under the auspices of the American Red Cross. It is a wonderful work for soldiers whose faces have been hideously mutilated by German shells. Mrs. Ladd is the wife of Dr. Maynard Ladd, medical adviser of the American Red Cross, but her work has nothing to do with medicine.

In many hospitals, of course, plastic surgery is doing much to build up shattered faces. Mrs. Ladd, however, finds her subjects among those whom the surgeons cannot help. They are soldiers whose faces have been so shot to pieces that they present a hideous spectacle, one which their friends and relatives prepare to shun. The sufferers realize this and become very unhappy and sensitive and are inclined to hide themselves away from their fellow-beings. Mrs. Ladd has become greatly interested in the work of Captain Dervent, who improved on the gelatine and rubber formerly used and made metal masks. To make these masks, Mrs. Ladd takes a plaster cast of the mutile’s face, and then from pre-war photographs or descriptions furnished by friends, builds up in clay or plaster the missing parts until the cast is a good likeness of the man as he was.

From this cast, a thin copper mask is made and then plated with silver. This is fitted perfectly and the camouflage is held in place by a pair of spectacles. The final stage is to paint the mask so that it is practically indistinguishable.

In the accompanying illustration, it will be noted that the mutilation has not been so general and the pair of spectacle with eyes painted in disks behind the glasses serve to change this man from a fearsome evidence of war into a pleasant-looking Poilu whose friends easily recognize him. Of course, when painting the eyes on the disks great care was used to get the exact color and to get a natural appearance.

The masks, of course, do not restore the functions, they only camouflage these poor faces so that their owners will not hesitate to go about among their friends.

Source: The Monroe Journal (Claiborne, Alabama) – Thursday, November 21, 1918

Photos of Anna Ladd's Work

The Red Cross kept this photo library to share the work being done in Mrs. Ladd's studio - Click a photo to start the slide show.
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U.S. Wars on Loafers and “Sports” [May 23, 1918]

U.S. Wars on Loafers and “Sports” [May 23, 1918]

This item appeared in the May 23, 1918 issue of the Lake County Times, in Hammond, Indiana.

Prowlers Must Fight, Says U.S.

Slickers and Slackers, Night Owls, Gamblers and Idlers Will get Shock After July lst.

It is estimated that in Hammond, Gary, East Chicago, and Whiting there are 1,000 idlers affected by the U. 8. war department’s new ruling. Many of these men sleep by day and prowl by night. Some of them are gunmen. They are draft dodgers. News that Uncle Sam is after them is glad news to the police departments of the Calumet region cities. (more…)

The Decay of American Manhood (1917)

The Decay of American Manhood (1917)

This essay by John Harvey Kellogg appeared in Association Men, the official publication for Y.M.C.A. leaders during World War I. The piece caught my eye because so many people I encounter have an almost unreasonably nostalgic view of the past that does not make sense when looking at the world through the words of people living at the time. “People are people” and that has always been true.

The Decay of American Manhood

By J.H. Kellogg, M.D.,
Battle Creek, Michigan

History records nothing so wonderful as the development and progress of this great nation in the last hundred years.

But a blight has struck us.

American manhood is decaying.

We are going morally at a terrifying rate.

We have foes at home more deadly and destructive than our European enemies.

Davenport has shown that one in every hundred men is mentally defective, insane, epileptic, habitually criminal, or feeble-minded.

Recent military examinations have brought out most appalling facts.

Major Orr, a medical officer of the regular army, tells us that two to three out of every four applicants for the army are rejected as physically unfit.

Draft examinations show more than half our young men unfit for military training.

The examinations of the Life Extension Institute show only one man in a hundred wholly free from disease and physically fit. (more…)