The Broad High Road

At the end of WWII, with a Conservative Party defeat in the 1945 general election, Winston Churchill became leader of the British opposition. Midst the developing Cold War with the Soviet Union, Churchill warned of an "iron curtain" of Soviet influence in Europe and...

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Volkswagen in America

https://youtu.be/VUPCl1WUF-E VW Beetle   In 1933 Adolf Hitler demanded the production of an inexpensive automobile capable of transporting two adults and three children at 100 km/hr.   After WWII British occupation forces in Germany ordered 20,000 Type I VW beetles...

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Martians Land in Ecuador

https://youtu.be/zJIHi78T5lA In February 1949 an Ecuadorian folk song was interrupted by a Radio Quito announcer with urgent news: Martian flying saucers had landed and used death rays to destroy a town 25 miles south of Quito.Soon a "reporter" breathlessly reported...

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Monkeys Into Outer Space

https://youtu.be/VOzEGRH1548 The first living beings sent into outer space were fruit flies. Sent to test the effects of radiation on DNA, they flew in a V2 rocket to a height of 106 miles and returned to earth alive. In 1948 Albert, the first monkey to be sent, only...

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Recession

https://youtu.be/cORVhtz0zIg Following "Fair Deal" economic reforms and monetary tightening by the Federal Reserve, the U.S. economy took an 11-month downturn from November 1948 to October 1949. https://www.thebalance.com/unemployment-rate-by-year-3305506...

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American Economy

US federal spending as a share of GDP  Here is a conservative view of this epoch from the Mercatus Center/George Mason University   (alternative comments would be most welcome) In the four years from peak World War II spending in 1944 to 1948, the U.S. government cut...

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Post-WWII Life is Good

In 1948 post-WWII prosperity was rising for most Americans. Consumerism was on the march. While cartoon humor often had a violent edge to it. And the Babe died.

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Polaroid  Land Camera 

Land Cameras, instant cameras with self-developing film named after their inventor Edwin Land, were manufactured by Polaroid from 1947 to 1983.         Instant cameras have made quite a comeback these days.  

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Tupperware Parties

    The type of plastic that would ultimately be used for food containers was developed by Earl Tupper in 1938. Marketed after WWII as a new lightweight, unbreakable and airtight alternative for food storage, initial hardware and retail store sales were...

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Marshall Plan Initiated

In April 1948 sixteen nations joined the Marshall Plan's economic cooperation organization. In the Cold War atmosphere, Eastern European countries in the Soviet sphere that did not join were Czechoslovakia, Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Albania. Finland also...

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Transistor Invented

  In 1925, a Canadian patent was filed for the field-effect transistor principle by Austrian-Hungarian physicist Julius Edgar Lilienfeld -  but no research was published, and his work was ignored by industry. In 1934, another field-effect transistor was patented...

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Breaking the Sound Barrier 

    In October 1947, 24 year-old Air Force test pilot Charles E. "Chuck" Yeager flew an experimental Bell X-XS-1 rocket-propelled aircraft out of Edwards Air Force Base (then called Muroc Army Air Field) in California to break the sound barrier at a speed of...

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Voice of America Calls USSR

Established in 1942 for Allied propaganda broadcasts during WWII, the Voice of America (VOA) continued broadcasts after the war aimed mostly at Western Europe.     In September 1947, VOA began broadcasts aimed at the Soviet Union with: “Hello! This is New...

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4th of July 1947

Things were looking up in 1947 observationalism.com Cost of Living 1947 The People History Average Cost of new house $6,600.00  Average wages per year $2,850.00  Cost of a gallon of Gas 15 cents  Average Cost of a new car $1,300.00  Loaf of Bread 13 cents  United...

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Kalashnikov AK-47

Reliable in extreme conditions, simple to use and cheap to produce – the  AK-47 assault rifle was designed by Mikhail Kalashnikov after WWII. The originalI AK-47 model has spawned a host of derivative assault rifles.       The AK-47 is reportedly the...

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TELEVISION

      Television shows in 1947  Series Debut Ended Picture Page (UK) October 8, 1936 1939 1946 1952 Starlight (UK) November 3, 1936 1939 1946 1949 For The Children (UK) April 24, 1937 1939 July 7, 1946 1950 The Voice of Firestone Televues 1943 1947 1949...

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Post-WWII Labor Strikes

  In 1946, a year after WWII ended, >5 million American workers went on prolonged strikes in numerous industries and public utilities. The American strike wave of 1945–1946 became the largest series of labor strikes in American history. During WWII, the...

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Hitler’s Normal Voice

Adolf Hitler speaking with Carl Gustaf Mannerheim on a private train in Finland in 1942.   So accustomed to the usual ranting nature of Adolf Hitler's speeches, we find it difficult to imagine his normal conversational tone. This is purported to be the only known...

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Interstate Bus Segregation

In June 1946 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Virginia law requiring racial segregation on commercial interstate buses as a violation of the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution. The appellant Irene Morgan, riding an interstate Greyhound bus in 1944 had been...

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Life in Postwar America

Cost of Living 1946 Average Cost of new house $5,600.00 Average wages per year $2,500.00 Cost of a gallon of Gas 15 cents Average Cost of a new car $1,120.00 Worlds First Electric Blanket $39.50 Men's Ties $1.50 Watermans Pen $8.75 Chicken 41 cents per pound ...

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Marshall Plan

Named after United States Secretary of State George Marshall (U.S. Army Chief of Staff during WWII), the Marshall Plan (European Recovery Program)  had bipartisan support in Washington. An American initiative to assist Western Europe with recovery after WWII, the...

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ENIAC – Fast Electronic Computer

During WWII, the U.S. Ballistics Research Laboratory was handling the complex calculations of range tables that were needed for new artillery. In 1942, physicist John Mauchly proposed an all-electronic calculating machine in a memorandum entitled "The Use of High...

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Our Job in Japan

Our Job in Japan, a training film for American soldiers assigned to occupation forces in Japan, begins with a description of the Japanese brain that has been duped by military leaders. The film details Japanese barbarity during the war and advises taking no chances...

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Allies Occupy Germany

Your Job In Germany was a short film shown to US soldiers embarking on post-war occupation duty in Germany. Produced by the United States War Department in 1945, the film was made by a military film unit directed by Frank Capra and was written by Theodor...

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