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Mobilized: 1942

Mobilized: 1942

October 1942. "Great numbers of C-47 transport planes move along the assembly lines at the Douglas Aircraft Company plant at Long Beach, California. The versatile C-47 performs many important tasks for the Army. It ferries men and cargo across oceans and mountains, tows gliders and brings paratroopers and their equipment to scenes of action." 4x5 inch acetate negative by Alfred Palmer for the Office of War Information. View full size.


On Shorpy:
Today’s Top 5

Food safety?

I would hope all those lunch boxes we're seeing on top of the lockers are there post-lunch instead of pre-lunch. Maybe refrigeration wasn't that big of a concern back then.

[What planet did you grow up on? You are evidently not one of the eighty zillion schoolkids who ate from unrefrigerated lunchboxes back in the day. - Dave]

The plate above the flight deck

is an escape hatch. What is known as an "astrodome" was, indeed, a plexiglass dome for the navigator to take celestial bearings.

Gooney Birds

Was the affectionate term for the venerable C-47. A quarter century after this photo the Air Force gave me my first (uncomfortable) airplane trip in one of them.

The Old Days

When you could find a cigarette machine in your workplace conveniently near where your locker and lunch are located.

Clean plant!

Can you imagine in today's world trying to mobilize like America did in WWII?
Railroads trying to handle the traffic? For that matter, just the people bonding together.
Unbelievable output by our factories, many repurposed to produce war materiel.

Plate or door?

What is that square plate or door above the pilot's station on the top of the fuselage? Some kind of door? A plate covering some kind of electronic equipment?

The round one that's inboard and aft a bit is for the Navigator's acrylic dome I believe.

This Could Be One of Those Planes

With what I believe is a C-47 behind them, this is my father when he was on a war bond tour in September 1943. He had served early in the war as a tank commander in North Africa and was injured. Because of his war record he was selected to accompany several movie stars of the time to help sell war bonds. My father is the army man kneeling in front. The lady directly behind him is an actress named Helen Walker. Next to her is Albert Dekker, of Dr. Cyclops fame. The lady to the right of him is actress Elyse Knox. She would later be married to Tom Harmon and is the mother of Mark Harmon.

The Gooney Bird

Arguably (but not for me) the greatest aircraft ever built.

Smoke 'em if you got 'em

Pretty sure that's a cigarette machine under the left wingtip.

Big Biz

Wars are certainly good for industry. The sheer volume of aircraft, tanks, guns, ships, freight trains, trucks, armored vehicles, submarines, ammunition, bombs, etc, and all its infrastructure, produced in short order from all sides was staggering.

Lunch Boxes

I carried one of those for almost 35 years. When I retired, my wife gave it away without telling me. Horror! I still loved her.

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