Wednesday, August 19, 2009

WAVES of the Navy

The WAVES (Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service) started in August of 1943 after first lady Eleanor Roosevelt urged congress to authorize service by women in the United States Navy. Within one year of it's authorization, there were over 27,000 WAVES in the navy. At first their service was limited to the continental United States, and was mostly clerical in nature. By the time the war was over WAVES were also serving in Hawaii, and some were involved in naval aviation. The WAACS (Women's Auxiliary Army Corp.) began as an auxiliary part of the army and WAACS were not part of the army. WAVES were part of the navy right from the beginning, they held naval rank, and were also subject to military discipline. I don't know whether or not there were official portraits, done by the navy, of WAVES. This could be an official portrait, or just something paid for by the subject of this great World War 2 era portrait.

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