Civilian War Duties

World War II was like no other war before or since. All Americans, not only those in the Armed Forces and those in defense industries, were urged, and to a certain extent expected, to participate. Participation ranged from such passive efforts as growing victory gardens to actively serving in volunteer organizations that were involved in the defense of the state. Californians participated in organizing scrap metal drives, providing recreational activities such as dances for service members, and serving on local defense councils and in Civil Defense and Aircraft Warning Service units. If you had a civilian pilot's license you could serve in the Army Air Forces' Civil Air Patrol that conducted coastal and border patrols and provided training and logistical support to the Army. Over 75,000 Californians served in the California State Guard and thousands more served in the over 330 licensed militia companies of the California State Militia.

People and the War