The American Home Front December 7, 1941 - 1945
The American Home Front • Objectives: • Review events of December 7th 1941 • Discuss American Government’s reaction to attacks. • View events and actions taken by the American people. • Explain causes and events of the entrance of the United States into the war. • Words to know: Ration, G.I., Industry, front, neutrality, the Women’s movement, two front war.
What do we know about our country? • What makes it up? How many states? • What are the regions? • What do we produce? • Do we have many natural resources? • Can we survive on our own now? • Were we able to survive on our own in 1941? • What did Germany and Japan think of this country? • A “Sleeping Giant” was awakened on December 7th.
The American Home Front • After the attack on Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt read his famous speech to Congress and the United States Declared War on Japan. • This led Germany and Italy to declare war on the U.S. • World War II was now at America’s shores. (so much for neutrality).
The American Home Front The Axis Japan Germany Italy Allies Britain United States Soviet Union Other countries around the world join the war on the two sides. They help with soldiers, food, weapons, bases etc.
The American Home Front • The American People were asked by the government to ration everything. • The government also sold bonds or borrowed money from its own people to help with the war. • They needed the money because they needed to help the Allies as well as themselves. The U.S. was also not a very rich country and desperately needed money. • The Goal was to help allies while the U.S. prepared.
The American Home Front • In the U.S., Americans were scared and were afraid that Japan was targeting California (LA, San Francisco,), Washington and Oregon. • In preparation they passed: Executive Order 9066 • Tanks and soldiers were also sent to watch and protect the coasts. • Artillery was prepared and smaller ships were patrolling. In reality, the U.S. could do little to defend itself at this time.
The American Home Front • Off the coast of Florida, New York (the East coast), Germany was sinking our merchant ships with its submarines. Germany believed that the U.S. was assisting G. Britain and France. • In the west, the U.S. was losing battles in Asia. We had lost the Phillipines as well as several of our smaller island territories. Australia and India were under attack and it looked like China would fall soon to Japan. It did not look good for America or the Allies.
The American Home Front • The American military was not prepared for an all out war. • Remember it only had 300,000 men. About the same size as Denmark’s. • The U.S. calls on American men to enlist. The American people respond. • In fact the Government is overwhelmed by the number that decide to join. • Patriotism sweeps the country.
The American Home Front • American Industry had to go from peace time production to war time production(which takes a lot of time). • GM, Ford, and Chrysler went from creating cars to tanks. • Boeing from regular airplanes to bombers and fighter jets. • Gun makers like Colt, from hunting rifles to machine guns, flamethrowers, war rifles.
The American Home Front • With the country in full war mode, the U.S. was producing weapons faster than anybody around thought that it would or could. • In one month, the U.S. was able to produce up to 4,000 tanks and 4,500 planes. • Ship production also increased dramatically to help protect our coasts.
The American Home Front • Farms were producing as much food as possible. Meats and cereals were rationed and prepped for the war effort. Much of the food went to Britain and Russia. Both countries had already lost millions of soldiers and citizens because of the war and as a result of starvation. • Families turned in all the scrap metal they could as well as oil and gasoline to help. • The U.S. accepted help even from children.
The American Home Front • The war had an unintended effect. • Women joined the workforce. Before the war, only about 3 million worked in the U.S. Most were housewives and raised families. • Since so many men went to war, the U.S. was desperate for workers to produce weapons. So they replaced the men with women.
The American Home Front • The American Gov’t continued work on secret weapons for WWII. Some were not yet ready. • The Manhattan Project was part of this secret program. It was begun in 1941, the day before Dec. 7th attack. • The project would ultimately end WWII.