WWII Home Front 1943


V with lettuce


“Since my carrots, beets, radishes and lettuce are up, I feel a great, great interest in the garden. It is now a grim battle between me and the birds and, by God, I shall not yield!” (March 28, 1943)

“Today was very busy. In the morning I walked from home to home on Fremont collecting stockings for the salvage drive. One old man gave me a large shopping bag overflowing with what looked like the savings of forty years. This afternoon I made bandages at Red Cross. The Army asked for 185,00 in a hurry. ” (February 26, 1943)


Growing food in her Victory Garden in Menlo Park, California helped pass the time while her husband, Lt. Cmdr. Frederick Witzel, served in the Pacific.  As rationing grew stricter and war production took precedence over normal manufacturing, shopping for basics consumed more and more energy. By the summer of 1943, Virgilia couldn’t find a single pair of girl’s white socks in all of Palo Alto, and Woolworth’s replaced their candy display with books!