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The Fargo Forum


Most of the news in the Fargo Forum of June 9, 1943 related to the war. There were stories about the fighting and a list of local servicemen being held as prisoners of war.

A full page ad announced that American soldiers fighting in North Africa were supplied with a special non-melting butter. The butter was packed in a can, would keep indefinitely, and would not melt until the temperature reached 120 degrees. The newspaper said that Americans, unlike Europeans, are accustomed to having something to spread on their bread, and butter is very important to the comfort of our fighting men. And all Americans, said the paper, would certainly agree that nothing is too good for our fighting boys. Butter was a small thing to make their lives just a little more comfortable.

The page was a pitch for War Bonds, reading: “Giving our boys the things they need costs a lot of money – which is why the Government asks us to buy more War Bonds.” The logic was that, although Americans were making more money than ever, many of the things they would buy were either scarce or had disappeared completely. So what better way to spend the money than by supporting the boys in the field. When mature, the bonds would return $4 for every $3 invested.

War Bonds were an essential way of financing the war. Of 34 million Americans on defense plant payrolls, nearly 30 million of them participated in the Payroll Savings Plan -- investing 10% of their salaries in War Bonds. And that, said the Fargo Forum, was not too much to ask.

The page was the tenth in a series of 52 sponsored by numerous local businesses. Some of those sponsors, like Sears and Coca-Cola, are still familiar to us today. Others, like Red Owl Super Market and Goldberg Seed and Feed, are long gone.

Dakota Datebook written by Carole Butcher


Fargo Forum of June 9, 1943