WWII Homefront

Between 1939 and 1945, about 12 million soldiers served in the U.S. military both at home and abroad in two theaters of conflict – the Atlantic theater in Europe and the Pacific Theater in Asia. The U.S. population in 1944 was about 138 million. The entire country rallied.  Food and gas were rationed to direct resources to the military. Automobile and airplane factories converted from commercial to military production. With men being shipped overseas, millions of women, represented by Rosie the Riveter, went to work at these factories riveting airplanes and ships. Some women pilots volunteered to ferry planes within the United States. They were eventually organized as the Women’s Airforce Service Pilots (WASP). Victory gardens were planted to feed soldiers and the nation. In sum, the effort on the home front to support the war effort was massive. FDR’s plea to the nation in 1940 to create an “Arsenal of Democracy” was met.

In a 2014 Student News Net interview with Jonna Doolittle Hoppes, Gen. Doolittle’s granddaughter, Jonna said: “WWII wasn’t won just by the warriors. It was won by the American people together with their Allies and it was won just as much here in the United States as it was over in Europe and Japan.”