On December 8, 1941, just one day after the Pearl Harbor attacks, the United States officially entered World War II—Louisiana, however, was already front and center in the country’s defense preparations.
From 1940 to 1945, Louisiana hosted the largest maneuvers in US military history, witnessed massive changes to its industrial base, and saw its citizens become enthusiastic contributors to what President
Franklin Delano Roosevelt deemed “The Arsenal of Democracy.” The war afforded new, previously unimaginable opportunities to Louisiana’s residents. Through it all, these wartime experiences in the Pelican State laid
the groundwork for sweeping economic changes in the new, postwar world that emerged from the 20th century’s greatest struggle. Pelican State Goes to War: Louisiana in WWII was produced by the National World War II Museum.
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