But Hope and his USO gang’s presence on the tiny island was about much more than entertainment. One woman with a truck and a tent changed that for thousands of service members. The appearance of DoD visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement. “He would be angry if my school schedule wouldn’t let me be in one of the Christmas specials. . Bob Hope Collection, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division, Library of Congress (108.01.00) [Digital ID # bhp0108_01], Bookmark this item: //www.loc.gov/exhibits/hope-for-america/entertaining-the-troops.html#obj0, Cary Grant, Joan Bennett, Claudette Colbert, Joan Blondell, Charles Boyer, James Cagney . 1913), Desi Arnaz (1917–1986), Frank McHugh (1898–1981), writer Matt Brooks (1907–1990), James Cagney (1899–1986), Pat O’Brien (1899–1983), Juanita Stark, Alma Carroll; (standing, from left) Merle Oberon (1911–1979), Eleanor Powell (1912–1982), Arleen Whelan (1914–1993), Marie McDonald (1923–1965), Fay McKenzie (b. Bette Davis pointing out the Hollywood Hall of Honor . “They had to do with such a variety of topics—asking when they were going to be coming home, and would he be able to set a date with Lana Turner or Rita Hayworth. The production, emceed by Bob Hope and Cary Grant, was considered by the New York Times to be “the most ambitious money-raising project ever staged by the theatrical world.”, Eleanor Roosevelt on White House lawn with “Hollywood Victory Caravan” entertainers (seated, from left) Oliver Hardy (1892–1957), Joan Blondell (1906–1979), Charlotte Greenwood (1890–1977), Charles Boyer (1899–1978), Risë Stevens (b.

Sometime between July and September, 1944, Bob Hope and his small USO troupe, which included Frances Langford and Jerry Colona, went to Owi Island to entertain the 43rd Bomb Group. Some of our bases are pretty remote. Bob Hope Collection, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division, Library of Congress (108.00.00) [Digital ID# bhp0108], Letter from Elsie Janis to Bob Hope, December 10, 1952. Communication wasn’t instantaneous like it is today. Bob Hope Collection, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division, Library of Congress (111.00.00) [Digital ID # bhp0111p1a] Page 2. There would be all the band members.

Copyprint. She developed frostbite that winter and later received the Medal of Freedom. . Crouch II joined government, nonprofit and corporate leaders at the Starbucks Support Center in Seattle to open a dialogue about how best to help transitioning veterans reintegrate into the civilian workforce and their communities. . Many of the young women who volunteered at USO centers in the 1940s and 50s were looking for a way to contribute to the war effort.

Some of them were caught on the television programs—you’d see fighter jets. External Link Disclaimer | “They were just amazing audiences—with their courage and their love of laughter and humor,” Linda said. The legendary comedian traveled the world, visiting remote outposts in Alaska, dangerous battle zones in Beirut and isolated battleships in faraway seas to put on USO shows. A few even met their future husbands while dancing the night away. In fact, from the South Pacific I still get Christmas cards from old diseases!”, Linda Hope, left, produced her father’s USO tours toward the end of his career and joined him on his final tour in 1990 during the Gulf War. nothing else you do gets to you that way.” In this eloquent letter, the mother of one of the soldiers Hope entertained in Vietnam hours before her son’s death expressed her gratitude to the performer for his efforts. It was pretty awesome, frankly.”. Bookmark this item: //www.loc.gov/exhibits/hope-for-america/entertaining-the-troops.html#obj11. Personalized Checks with Patriotic Designs. A Bob Hope USO show in Vietnam, 1968. Hope lightened the mood in deadly serious situations, and he thrived on the crowd’s response. Seabee Ron Ronning, 19, and his fellow naval construction buddies worked around the clock to build a runway for Bob Hope’s C-141. During the war, only nine of Hope’s 144 broadcasts were recorded in the studio—the rest were performed in front of troops.
Using multimedia elements and captivating storytelling—including artifacts, films, photographs, and interactive displays—the exhibit highlights how Hope helped lift the human spirit during one of the darkest times in American history. The tap dancer was only 21 years old when she set out with Hope and the others on the 1944 summer tour of the South Pacific.

“I’m not sure he touched them in the same way that he did in World War II,” she added, wistfully.

“He woke me up and said, ‘We’re over the water and there’s a ship that has 2,700 men down below and they’re kind of asleep right now but the admiral would like you to say something to them.”. The number of men and women deployed to the front lines may be fewer today, but the USO is becoming more expeditionary to meet their needs. His first combat zone USO tour in 1943 was visiting U.S. forces in North Africa, Italy and Sicily.

Bob Hope (1903–2003) and his USO troupe visiting a hospital ward in the South Pacific (from left) Tony Romano (1915–2005), Jerry Colonna (1904–1986), Bob Hope, Patty Thomas (b. We recommend our users to update the browser.

Here are several highlights... His first performance for service members was at March Field, California, May 6, 1941. The entertainment industry promoted two morale-boosting initiatives that achieved phenomenal success. From World War II through today, the USO and The Coca-Cola Company have teamed up to bring a taste of home to service members and military families. George S. Patton Papers, Manuscript Division.

Bob and the Bombshells Hope and Frances Langford help load an artillery shell as part of a USO show, 1944.

In July 1971, President Nixon (1913–1994) appointed Sammy Davis, Jr., (1925–1990) to his National Advisory Council on Economic Opportunity. Bob Hope Collection, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division, Library of Congress (121.00.00) [Digital ID# bhp0121p1] (121.00.01), Bookmark this item: //www.loc.gov/exhibits/hope-for-america/entertaining-the-troops.html#obj10, Bob Hope’s annual USO Christmas tours in Vietnam prompted many letters from family members of servicemen. Handwritten letters were also cherished, she added. After learning of the success of New York’s Stage Door Canteen, Bette Davis (1908–1989), along with fellow Hollywood star John Garfield (1913–1952), established the Hollywood Canteen, where during World War II some 2,500 servicemen danced nightly with stars and volunteer hostesses, enjoyed top flight entertainment, and dined for free. Actress, dancer, and singer Patty Thomas was part of the troupe Bob Hope assembled to entertain USmilitary audiences around the world. “There were a number of close calls. Copyprint. Accessibility | Bob Hope Collection, Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division, Library of Congress (131.00.00) [Digital ID# bhp0131], Bookmark this item: //www.loc.gov/exhibits/hope-for-america/entertaining-the-troops.html#obj15, About | For the past ten years, Ideum has designed and built multitouch tables and touch displays for museums and other demanding spaces. He loved to joke about sex and women: “There’s still a great need for the USO. They then zoom from a global to a regional view and select individual dates and locations to investigate.

“A platoon in the South Pacific had marched to get to this base where Dad was doing some shows. “I got up and went to the cockpit and made a speech to the boys and then I sang, ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.’ It was very poignant to me. He got a real connection with the guys that were serving,” Linda said. Bob Hope performs aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Okinawa (LPH-3)—anchored off the coast of Bahrain—during a USO Christmas show for sailors patrolling the Gulf.