[This blog post was written by Matthew Peek, Military Collection Archivist for the State Archives of North Carolina.]
During World War II, businesses and corporations created newsletters to inform current employees and former employees in military service of war-related news about the company. Company war newsletters also give a wide variety of perspectives about local communities during the war and about their citizenry’s role in the war effort. Many of these company newsletters featured staff-created cartoons parodying or depicting aspects of life during the war. The newsletters were a vital part of home front life for those who read them.
The cover of this monthly newsletter of the Cannon Mills Company of Concord, North Carolina, producer of all-purpose textile products, features a cartoon of various military scenes, centered on a U.S. Army soldier flashing a “V for Victory” hand signal. The newsletter was sent to former employees in the U.S. Armed Forces, and helped connect Cabarrus County soldiers with home and friends in the service. Company newsletters would often reprint soldiers’ letters home for friends, family, and fellow soldiers to learn about local service individuals’ wartime conditions. Many North Carolina companies involved in U.S. military production created similar newsletters and company newspapers.
To learn more about North Carolina businesses and corporations’ contributions during the war, check out the County War Records collection, found in the WWII Papers of the Military Collection at the State Archives of North Carolina.
This blog post is one in two-week series of posts sharing the items used in the exhibit titled “The Family Traditions of Service: A Historical Tribute to Veterans.” This exhibit, on display from November 3 to November 13, 2015, at the Dare County Arts Council building in Manteo, N.C., is sponsored by the Friends of the Outer Banks History Center, the exhibit serves as a historical tribute to over 100 years of military service of North Carolina residents and their families, with particular emphasis on coastal North Carolina. The goal of the exhibit is to honor the role of North Carolina veterans and their families during peacetime and war. The items from this exhibit come from the holdings of the Military Collection at the State Archives of North Carolina and the Outer Banks History Center.