Shortly after the United States entered into World War II, the country realized the importance of conserving and collecting natural resources. With restrictions on imports (like tin and rubber) in effect and a large army to supply, the U.S. government quickly took action to encourage the collection of various resources. As a result, civilians both young and old were encouraged to collect various items to support the war effort; rubber, paper, scrap metal, bacon grease, and various other items were collected by civilians to be turned over to the federal government. Throughout our interviews, the National Home Front Project has recorded memories from both children and adults as they recall their collection efforts, including various scrap metal drives, newspaper drives, and other various volunteer efforts.
Click on the photos below to read and hear their stories through audio clips and transcripts. Check back as we continue adding more from our collection of nearly 300 interviews from contributors nationwide. Please help us ensure stories are preserved by contacting us if you, a family member, or a friend have stories to share.