The New-York Historical Society is currently running an exhibition, titled “WWII & NYC,” which explores the role the City played in supporting the wartime effort. Included in the exhibit are images of the WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service), who received training on the Hunter (Lehman) campus. The exhibit is open from now through May 27.
Through more than 300 objects, including artifacts, paintings, maps, photographs, posters, film footage, music, radio broadcasts, and newly recorded eyewitness accounts, the installation tells the story of how the City was transformed from the commercial center of the world to a hub of military activity.
From images that show the City’s harbors with military reinforcement to the mobilization of workers and training for the men and women serving in the war, the exhibition gives visitors an intimate portrait of what the war was like from a New York City point of view.
But it wasn’t just Manhattan that felt the burden of the military presence—some 86,000 women (WAVES) received training by the U.S. Navy on what was then known as the Bronx campus of Hunter College and is now the Lehman campus. Apartment buildings neighboring the campus were taken over for the cause to temporarily house the trainees and staff.
For more information on the exhibit, visit wwii.nyhistory.org/