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August 16, 2021

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Mobilizing Minds: Selected Posters from the Office of War Information, 1942-43

Location: Hall of Presidents, Morris Library

Times: Monday – Friday, 8:30–4:30

A new exhibit in the Hall of Presidents and Chancellors features examples from our collection of World War II posters produced by the Office of War Information (OWI). The OWI recruited illustrators and graphic designers from the worlds of art and advertising to help shape public opinion in the first two years of the war. Some posters warned against sharing sensitive information such as shipping schedules and routes. Others exhorted civilians to conserve resources necessary to supply and transport the troops. Growing your own food, patching clothes to make them last longer, and recycling food wastes such as fats and oils all helped save raw materials for the war. A popular series of images by Norman Rockwell depicted President Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms, underpinning war aims. Altogether the poster campaign skillfully employed shared emotions to help mobilize the entire population toward a common goal.

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