ATLANTIC — Iowa did more than its share to supply goods to help win World War II. Dr. Lisa Ossian will tell that story on Sunday, Jan. 17 at 2 p.m. The program will be presented via Zoom so it can be viewed at home.
Dr. Ossian has researched and published a book, “The Home Fronts of Iowa, 1939 – 1945.” Ordnance plants in Burlington and Ankeny and the Maytag industry produced guns, bullets, bombs and other military necessities. Iowa exceeded records in War Bond Drives. Farmers — men and women — met food goals.
Dr. Ossian is a professor of history at Des Moines Area Community College in central Iowa, and has served on numerous state and national educational boards.
She earned her master’s degree in women’s studies at Eastern Michigan University and her doctorate at Iowa State University in agricultural history and rural studies. She was elected at the National Education Association’s national 2011 convention to serve a three-year term as one of two at-large higher education directors on the NEA’s national board and has also been elected twice to the State Historical Society of Iowa Board. She has also served on the Hoover Presidential Education Committee, the OAH Committee on Community Colleges, NEA’s Thought & Action and the Humanities Iowa Speakers’ Bureau, where she has been a Humanities speaker for many years.
In addition to her book on the Home Fronts, she’s written “The Forgotten Generation: American Children and World War II” and “The Depression Dilemmas of Rural Iowa, 1929-1933,” which were published by the University of Missouri Press. She is currently researching and writing her next book tentatively titled “The Grimmest Spectre: The World Famine Emergency, Herbert Hoover’s Mission, and the Invisible Year, 1946.” She has presented her current and past research at a number of international and national conferences.
The home front contributions of Iowans and Americans divided into four historical fronts: the farm front, the production front, the community front and the kitchen front. Food for Freedom directed American farmers in the all-out production needed for the war effort and the Allies’ relief, and Iowa farmers led the nation in crop and livestock production. Iowa’s small businesses and industries such as Maytag added to the “Arsenal of Democracy” by filling many military sub-contract orders while the two newly constructed ordnance plants in Burlington and Ankeny produced thousands of bombs and millions of machine gun bullets. Iowa’s small towns and cities matched and exceeded records in the eight War Bond Drives as well as the numerous scrap drives for iron, paper, rubber and tin, and Iowa’s women met the rationing and production requirements demanded from the federal government in all home kitchens.
This program is sponsored by Atlantic Rock Island Society Enterprise (ARISE). It is supported by Atlantic Community Promotion Commission and made possible by Humanities Iowa.
Using Zoom makes it possible to reach up to 100 people in your own homes, no masks and social distancing required. Find the link to Zoom on Sunday at the ARISE web site, ariseAtlantic.org.