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Girls' ROTC.- January 11, 1943 Life Magazine

Wednesday, May 18, 2016 11:25:30 AM America/New_York

Exerpt from January 11, 1943 Life magazine

New Hampshire Coeds Toughen Up For War

If, as the natives whisper, Daniel Webster sometimes revisits his childhood haunts when the wild winds whistle through the New Hampshire hills, he would find no more baffling sign of the U.S. at war than the sight of 650 rugged bare-legged girls drilling on a bleak, snow-covered field (above). These girls, students at the University of New Hampshire in Durham, are the first organized college group in the U.S. to undergo pre-graduation training like men's ROTC which will fit them specifically for service in the WAAC, WAVES, and other auxiliaries of the armed forces. For the last six weeks they have been embarked on a new intensive physical-education program which soon will be duplicated in many State universities and colleges. This new program was worked out in Washington by a committee representing the Army, Navy, WAAC, WAVES, Army and Navy Air Corps and college teachers of dancing, sports, games and physical education. It abandons purely recreational activities in favor of military drill and calisthenics (based on U.S. Army Basic Field Manual), emphasizes body building and toughening achieved through hiking, conditioning exercises, and a going-over on the rigorous, man-sized obstacle course. Freshmen, sophomores and juniors are required to put in at least three hours a week on the new program. Most seniors, who expect to join one of the auxiliaries or to undertake work in war industries, take the course on a voluntary basis. Although they have no official uniform, the girls wear light-blue shorts and blouses for indoor exercise and sometimes for more strenuous outdoor activities. Thus far the only hitch in the rigid training regime, shown on this and the following pages, developed when the university's imminent Military Art Ball made it necessary to let up on all exercises for a few days because the girls were too stiff to dance.

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The Colorado River. - October 23, 1944 Life magazine

Wednesday, May 4, 2016 8:44:49 AM America/New_York

Exerpt from October 23, 1944 Life Magazine

A Wild and Beautiful River is put to Work for Man

The Colorado River, fifth longest in the U.S., is probably the wildest and most violently beautiful in the world. It is certainly one of the most useful. The expanding economy of the whole southwestern corner of the U.S. depends on it. At its source in Rocky Mountain National Park (see opposite page) the Colorado is clear and cold, fed by melting snow and dammed by beavers. As it flows southward, it gains strength and becomes yellow with mud. For 1,000 miles it rushes through a steepwalled gorge, which for an unbelievable 217 miles is called Grand Canyon. By the time it empties over great tidal flats into the Gulf of California it is broad and sullen, only partly controlled by levees. The strength which makes the Colorado dangerous is what makes it useful. The deep canyons it has cut are probably the best natural dam sites in the world. The river is first harnessed at a point about two thirds of the way from its headwaters, at Boulder Dam. Behind the dam a great blue lake, filled by the muddy river, turns the turbines which supply electricity to the war industry of the southwest. Below Boulder the river is plugged at Parker Dam, where part of it is drawn off to supply Los Angeles with water. Farther down, at Imperial Dam, it is tapped by canals which water one of America's richest agricultural areas, the Imperial and Yuma-Gila Valleys,

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Girls of Kansas State University. - December 11, 1939 Life Magazine

Friday, April 22, 2016 8:18:50 AM America/New_York

Exerpt from December 11, 1939 Life Magazine

Kappa Alpha Theta

The girls who go to the University of Kansas are as different in their looks and backgrounds as the buildings in which they live. The buildings (left) are sometimes classic, sometimes Tudor, sometimes Georgian. Some of the girls are dull and some bright, some pretty and some plain, some grinds and some “jivers.” In a typical freshman class of 700, about 110 will be farmers' daughters, 75 merchants' daughters, 40 teachers' daughters, 25 bankers' daughters. Their State University is at Lawrence, perched on the highest hill in eastern Kansas. It is a surprising town to find in the most middle of the Midwestern States. Settled by New Englanders, it is very much like New England except that the wind blows all the time. The streets are lined with spreading elms and some of the houses have captain's walks. In regular session, 1,500 girls attend the University, which is co-educational. For the most part they have a very good time at college, often living better there than they do at home. A fourth of them occupy sorority houses; less than a third, dormitories. The rest board out around town. Their college life is heartier, more social and much more frankly concerned with boys than it is at an Eastern women's college. Almost all the girls are Kansans who settle down in Kansas after graduation. As alumnae, they are the most closely knit group of people in the State, binding all Kansas together from town to town by friendships made at Lawrence. The way they learn to live, to dress, to behave, to look at life and culture, affects their future and the future of their State in a hundred small and subtle ways.

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Pearl Harbor Salvage. - June 14, 1943 Life magazine

Sunday, April 10, 2016 8:24:03 PM America/New_York

 Exerpt from June 14, 1943 Life Magazine.

Resurrection of Wrecked Warships

The pictures on these pages, showing the resurrection of wrecked American warships at Pearl Harbor, represent one of the most remarkable feats of marine engineering ever attempted. They also give evidence that many U. S. battleships, shattered by bomb and torpedo on Dec. 7, 1941 and subsequently refloated and rebuilt, have been sent back to the war as better fighting ships than they were when sunk. Of the 19 ships damaged on that fateful day, 14 have already been repaired and sent to sea under their own power. Three of the remaining five, the Arizona, Oklahoma and Utah, are at present undergoing salvage operations. The remaining two, the destroyers Cassin and Downes, were damaged beyond economical repair but more than 50% of their equipment has been utilized in new ship construction. This record has bettered anything the Navy dared hope when it made a preliminary survey of the smoking ruins a few hours after the attack. The record was achieved by the use of imagination and a good deal of hard work. The Oklahoma, for example, lay with about a third of her bottom exposed and sloping at a 30° angle. First a scale model was built and mounted in exactly the same position as the capsized ship. Divers studied this model before going down into the oily muck below-decks to close compartments. When this was done, steel cables anchored to the ship's hull and powered by electric motors set up on nearby Ford Island, slowly drew the 29,000-ton ship over until she was upright (see opposite page). Next, salvage men will go to work on her as they have on the already completed Nevada, West Virginia and California—first removing as much weight as possible, then sealing breaches, refloating the ship and removing it to drydock to be cleaned, rewired and rebuilt with the latest equipment.

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Ballads and Tales of the Frontier. - August 22, 1960 Issue

Monday, March 28, 2016 8:44:01 AM America/New_York

Exerpt from August 19, 1946 Life Magazine.

Folklore of America - Part 5

The frontier days of the last half of the 19th Century-crowded with the feats of wagon drivers and cowhands, bad men and shooting marshals, lumberjacks and miners—brought out the saltiest of all American folk tales. Bloody episodes, gruesome enough in fact, were daubed up in the retelling so that a single shooting became a massacre, worrisome incidents became miraculous escapes, light ladies became beauteous heroines. The stories exalted physical strength as well as the six-shooter. Steel workers and lumbermen joined the ranks of legendary heroes. But a growing sense of humor tempered the hardship and dangers of life on the exploding frontier and Americans began to have fun poking fun at one another. Towns competed in boasting that they had the biggest, the best-or the worst—of everything. Still fresh and funny, these exaggerations make a treasury of home-grown folk tales as broad and as varied as the land itself.

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Yellowstone National Park. - August 19, 1946 Life Magazine

Monday, March 21, 2016 8:40:52 AM America/New_York

Exerpt from August 19, 1946 Life Magazine.

Park Has Busiest Tourist Summer

Back in the 1840s when Jim Bridger used to talk about Yellowstone, he would describe the petrified elk in the petrified forests, and the petrified traveler who, slipping from a mountaintop, was saved because the law of gravity was also petrified. Jim spun these yarns because nobody would believe the things he had actually seen: steaming geysers and mud volcanoes, a waterfall twice as high as Niagara. Yellowstone remained for years a sort of joke book borderland at a back entrance of hell. It was not until 1870 that an official expedition visited Yellowstone, confirmed its wonders and promptly sat down to discuss splitting them up into private monopolies. But one man, Judge Cornelius Hedges, stoutly said that it should be preserved as a national public park run by the U. S. Two years later it became one, the first and still the largest (3,472 square miles) in America. That year 5,000 visitors came. This summer, Yellowstone's biggest, there have already been more than half a million. They come by plane, car, rail, bus and motorcycle from every state in the Union. They camp out or sleep in trailer parks ($1), tourist huts ($1.25 up), lodges ($5 up with food) or hotels ($3.50 up). The postcards they buy would make a pile higher than the Empire State Building.

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U.S.S. Hornet's Last Days.- August 2, 1943 Life Magazine

Wednesday, March 9, 2016 9:00:05 AM America/New_York

 Exerpt from September 30, 1946 Life Magazine.

Tom Lea Paints Death of Great Carrier

The sinking of the U.S. S. Hornet by Jap planes on Oct. 26, 1942 is no longer a news event. It now belongs to history. But of all the great stories of the war, none is more filled with heroism and tragedy than the loss in the South Pacific of this mighty aircraft carrier.

Four days before the Hornet's last fight, Tom Lea, artist-war correspondent on assignment for LIFE, transferred from her to another ship. For 66 days he had lived aboard the Hornet. Since then he has been working on a series of paintings showing what happened on the day she was sunk. Research material for the paintings came not only from his own penciled sketches made before he was transferred, but from accounts given to him by officers and enlisted men who survived the sinking. His drawings and paintings are reproduced on these eight pages.

Tom Lea says that the days he spent aboard the Hornet were the proudest days of his life. In a letter written to LIFE he describes the emotions he feels about the ship. “I have been trying to write you about how a ship seems to be a living thing and how each ship has her own particular personality. Yet a ship does not begin to live merely because she has engines, and steel, and decks and a flag. She begins to live only as she receives from the men who sail her the best part of their personalities. Men endow a ship, not only with their own souls, their own hopes and desires, but also, because a ship's performance depends upon the men who sail heir own behavior.

“If this is true of all ships, it is particularly true of a man-of-war. Such a ship achieves her destiny only in destruction, and her quality of living is somehow shaped by her quality of dying. Men on a warship think of dying just as normally as they think of living. “An aircraft carrier is by her very nature a most pe. culiar warship, for she belongs not wholly to the sea nor sufficiently to the sky. Without heavy deck guns or stout armor, she is physically the most vulnerable of warships, carrying within her the seeds of her own destruction.

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Yankee-Dodger Series of 1952. - October 20, 1952 Issue

Thursday, March 3, 2016 8:32:07 AM America/New_York

  Exerpt from September 30, 1946 Life Magazine.

 The Country Can't Take it's Eyes off TV as Series Comes to Climax

For seven days the midday life of some 70 million Americans was disrupted. People went to lunch and didn't come back for hours. Work slowed down, classrooms were disrupted, and especially on the last day almost nobody, from beer-sipping low-brows to erudite high-brows, watched anything but the Yankees-Dodgers acting out on TV one of the most dramatic World Series since the Dean brothers whoomped Detroit 18 years ago. The audience saw Dodgers make impossible catches, marveled at an old man named Mize clouting three homers, watched the Yankees Casey Stengel make one successful managerial move after another. By the seventh inning of the seventh game people had seen enough to talk about all winter. Then with two out and bases loaded a Yankee infielder gave them another tidbit by making a story-book catch of a pop fly lost in the sun. As people sat breathless, a waitress in Denver eyed TV deadheads at her counter and said, “We can’t get them off the stools. They just ask for another cup of coffee and go on watching.”

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Las Vegas in the 40's. - December 21, 1942 Issue

Monday, February 22, 2016 8:45:00 AM America/New_York

 Exerpt from September 21, 1942 Life Magazine.

 Money is Easy Come, Easier Go

Las Vegas, Nev. has the reputation of being the most “wide-open" town in the U. S., and revels in it. The big boom which the town enjoyed during the construction of Boulder Dam seems like high jinks at a church bingo party compared to the preposterous prosperity of today. The average paycheck cashed in Las Vegas is better than $85 a week. Truck drivers are earning up to $150. Nearby the world's largest magnesium plant paid out during construction over $900,000 every week to its 11,000 workers. Within easy hitch-hiking distance are two Army camps, which disgorge restless men into Las Vegas' whirlpool on weekends. Add to this a heavy tourist trade plus the stream of customers drifting through the town's quick marriage and divorce mills, and the reasons for Las Vegas' wide-open reputation become as obvious as the lights on fabulous Fremont Street (upper left). Moneyed people move hopefully to Las Vegas because Nevada is the only State in the Union with no income, sales, inheritance or corporation taxes. But for a town of 20,000 population (recently increased from 14,000). Las Vegas does a meat and gaudy job of shaking down dough as fast as people save it. Even drugstores resound with the clink and whirr of “one-armed bandits,” slot machines which swallow coins, ranging in size from the rare Las Vegas copper penny to the common silver dollar with equal unfairness. On this and the following pages LIFE Photographer Peter Stackpole has pictured some of the many interesting ways to lose, and sometimes win, in Las Vegas, and some of the people who spend their time and money desperately locking horns with luck.

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Arthur Murray. - September 30, 1946 Issue.

Monday, February 15, 2016 8:19:29 AM America/New_York


 Exerpt from September 30, 1946 Life Magazine.

A Bashful Wallflower becomes the World's No.1 Teaching Dance Master.

GI’s in their foxholes, the way the ads used to tell it, passed their few sleeping hours dreaming about mother's cooking or Rover, the faithful terrier they left behind. But to judge by the number of veterans now attending the Arthur Murray Dance Studios under the GI Bill of Rights, what they really dreamed about was learning to tread a graceful rumba. Murray, who calls himself “The World's Most Famous Dancing Teacher,” has thousands of them pirouetting experimentally in his studios at government expense and he expects to produce at least 100,000 finished products within the next year. The idea started as a joke. Early this year, a former GI who was polishing up his samba in Murray's New York studio remarked wryly that Uncle Sam should be footing the bill under the GI Bill of Rights. It had not previously occurred to Murray that a dancing school might be officially regarded as an educational institution. But, sighting a gold mine, he had a lawyer look up the terms of the GI Bill of Rights and concluded that a veteran studying to be a dancing teacher could qualify for government payment. A modest ad in the New York Times brought several hundred applicants and by April the first class of ex-servicemen was dipping, swaying and Lindy-hopping all at Uncle Sam's expense.

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Comments | Posted By Chris Palmer
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