Two Years Old


Strike up the band! July 30, 1944 would be the 2nd anniversary of the WAVES, and the Navy sent out dozens of photographs to mark the occasion.  We’ll take a look at some here on our blog in the days leading up to the anniversary.

This photograph comes from NAS Seattle, where the WAVES drum corps is marching to celebrate the day. It comes from the National Archives.


Open Wide!

The open houses held in connection with the WAVES’ anniversary were designed to show people the extent of the work the women were doing. In this image, a WAVE shows her visitors the dental equipment. WAVES worked in Naval dental offices during the war. The photo of the second anniversary celebration at NAS New Orleans comes from the National Archives.

Packing a ‘Chute

In this photo from the National Archives, two enlisted WAVES at NAS NOLA pack a parachute during an open house held as part of the WAVES 2nd anniversary celebration in 1942. Everyone in the audience is paying close attention to the audience, except for the little girl in the lower right, who noticed the presence of a camera.

Hospital Ward

Imagine being WAVE Harriet Stewart! She’s the woman on the hospital bed (lower right) under covers , playing “sick” for a demonstration during the open house at the first anniversary of the WAVES in 1943. The open house for invited guests by the WAVES hospital corps school. Ensign Dorothy Smith is addressing the class  on the technique of giving proper care to a bed patient is delivered. The photo comes from the National Archives.

On Display

The WAVES anniversary celebrations offered more than just cake, marching and excursions for the women. WAVES also did informational displays for visitors during the anniversary, such as this in this National Archives photograph, where WAVE Anna Martinez shows visitors a photo mural made at NAS NOLA during open house on the WAVES second birthday in 1943.