Been a while since we've had a thread on nukes. This is what kids growing up in the '50s had to deal with:
Stuff like this wasn't a one-time or yearly thing, we had our noses rubbed in it constantly. We'd have to watch films like this at assemblies in the gym, on TV (along with the Civil Defense practice alerts), and participate in frequent classroom drills. We were continually reminded it could happen any time. I grew up in northern Illinois and there were constant ANG overflights. I remember vividly a flight of C-119s at low altitude. And a silver speck waaay up there dragging contrails would bring on an anxiety attack - was it an airliner or was it a commie bomber? Was I going to see a flash? There were constant reminders to tune to a CONELRAD station (640 and 1240 on the AM dial*) for instructions in an emergency. Schools and fire stations were designated fallout shelters.
*See those little triangles on the dial?
My wife is a few years younger than me and for her it was the Cuban Missile Crisis. She says she didn't think she was going to live to see high school.
So, today we have Putin building more, and more powerful, missiles, North Korea nearing the ability to plop one on Anchorage, and China in the mix. Add to that the very real possibility of a terrorist "dirty" bomb and the stress is starting to make a comeback. Here's what the Defense Department thinks will happen in the event of all-out nuclear war:
And to set you mind at ease , you can find your location on this site and see how well you'd fare.
We do not stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.- George Bernard Shaw
I remember the drills in grade school but not in high school (graduated in 64). One thing I do remember from those days was Joan Baez making the news in 1957 as a 16 year old high school student who refused to participate in the drills. Al Capp, the cartoonist who did the "Lil' Abner" comic strip later dubbed one of his characters "Joanie Phoanie" (which he denied was Baez but she insisted it was).
About that same time, I participated in an organization called The Ground Observer Corpse. A volunteer plane spotting group that called in EVERY aircraft sighting. At that time, the Russians really could fly in "under the radar". We had wallet sized clear plastic cards with circles of various sizes to estimate aircraft altitude. I still have one and the lapel pin somewhere.
Last edited by CWB; 03-22-2017 at 11:41 AM.
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I was busy playing baseball. I never heard of Agent K, but I know my dad knew some of those long coated jackals because I saw them at my house. I knew something was up but I was busy.
Our school desks were one piece, seat attached to a swing up desktop. Barely big enough for me to get in to let alone get under. Then one would have to sit on a 2" piece of pipe that connected the seat to the desk top. High school we had chairs and desks. By then we were in the middle of the race riots and there wasn't a lot of to-do about war that I remember. I don't even remember knowing much about Nam until I enlisted in the Navy in 69.
But, I was never much of a student. I remember very little of the lessons. By the time High School came around I had given up baseball for girls (one) and hunting and fishing. Mostly fishing. With my girlfriend. She liked to chase me around with snakes she found down by the canal. I am glad I didn't get heavily in to guns yet. I may have shot off some of her fingers.
I learned to just live and let come what may cause there ain't a darn thing we can do about it.
Last edited by hombre243; 03-22-2017 at 01:17 PM.
I had a few duck and cover drills in elementary, in the years 1962-1966. And I remember when Kennedy was assassinated, that was pretty stressful. The drills were expected and no one worried about it too much. But we were very aware why the "duck and cover" drills were being done. It was because of the danger of atomic war.
I was in elementary school in the 50's.
Remember it very vividly. I also remember a lot of the kids worrying about world tensions.
I am grateful every day that I had a nuclear bomb proof desk to hide under.
It really helped............
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I was a kid in the 80's and I remember bomb drills. It was the height of the cold war.
Now schools do active shooter drills.
The reasons may change - but schools have always practiced "herding" the kids quickly. Same principle as a fire drill.
I too remember those duck and cover drills in elementary school in the fifties. Dang, we're getting old aren't we?
I'll give you to the count of three to get off my property...one, two, BANG!
We were marched into an interior hallway and told to face the (concrete block and ceramic tile clad) wall and cover our heads with our arms.
I was too young to have heard the "kiss your a$$ goodbye" line, but something very similar was buzzing around my elementary school mind...
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