Monday, May 26, 2014
Gold Star Mothers
How's this for a happy bunch of people? I really like the guy in the front row with the baby doll and the lap sitting on the right. But when I first saw these two photos, it wasn't the party action that caught my eye. It was the star banner in the background. In 1918, at the recommendation of the Women's Service Committee, American women were authorized to wear a black armband with a blue star for every child in the military and a gold star for every son or daughter who had died. Banners were also made using the same design. On June 4, 1928, twenty-five women residing in Washington, D.C., started Gold Star Mothers, Inc., as a service organization providing comfort to the mother's of dead servicemen. During World War 2 and Korea, Gold Star Mothers distributed banners with the traditional blue star, gold star configuration. They were usually hung in the front window of the serviceman's home, so that people walking down the street could see who was serving and who had sacrificed their lives. This photo shows a single blue star, and since the people in these photos look late forties, early fifties, the banner could be a hold over from World War 2, or current for the forgotten conflict, Korea. I was born in 1955, in a small town in Pennsylvania, and a lot of people still hung blue and gold star banners in their home. One other bit of info, a gold star banner wasn't limited to combat deaths. During World War 2, as an example, more American soldiers in the North Africa campaign died from heat, than from combat.