This is the third of four columns visiting the 1941 weekly news magazines of Morrison Field, now Palm Beach International Airport. You can read every page on HistoricPalmBeach.com.
These snippets are from just before Pearl Harbor and just after. Watch the tone make a dramatic change.
Nov. 15: “There’s gold in them thar hills,” was the cry of the men and women of ‘49, and the same cry will be heard on this base next Saturday night when Morrison field officers drop their 1941 garb, let down their hair, and throw formality to the winds in a shootin’, rootin’, tootin’, gun toting Forty-Niner party at the Officers’ Club.
Nov. 29: Commissary Will Provide Staple Groceries at Low Prices. Housed in modern shelves and maintained by modern business methods the $15,000 stock will be composed of items on housewives’ and soldiers’ shopping lists from ammonia to yeast.
Dec. 6: The Protestant enlisted men’s choir will make its public debut tomorrow at the inter-faith service in the chapel at 9:30 o’clock. (“Tomorrow:” Dec. 7.)
Dec. 13: The first radio bulletins on the bombing of Pearl Harbor, which reached this section soon after the noon hour Sunday, catapulted base authorities into action. All personnel were restricted to the base, and an order was issued to keep civilians out. We are no longer merely selectees and enlisted men spending a required training period on a military reservation. The novelty, if there ever was one, is over and finished. We are now a part of a nation which has sprung to life in defense of its material and spiritual possessions. A nation which is girding itself for the most tremendous war effort in all its history. We must act accordingly.
Dec. 20: Midnight Mass, a traditional Christmas service in the Catholic Church since its early days, will be celebrated in the Morrison Field Chapel Wednesday midnight, according to a statement released yesterday by Chaplain Edward J. Burns. Plans for this mass had been abandoned since so many of the men of the Base were scheduled to leave on Christmas furloughs; however, since the start of hostilities canceled these leaves Chaplain Burns has now completed arrangements for the impressive and beautiful ceremony.
Next week: The boogie-woogie bugle boy.