Arizona during World War II

Summary

Arizona during World War II
Eleanor Roosevelt at Gila River, Arizona at Japanese-American Internment Center - NARA - 197094.jpg
LocationArizona, United States
Date1940–1945
Casualties~2,349
EventsMachita Incident
– October 16, 1940
Thanksgiving Day /Phoenix Massacre
– November 27, 1942
Great Papago Escape
– December 23, 1944

The history of Arizona during World War II begins in 1940, when the United States government began constructing military bases within the state in preparation for war. Arizona's contribution to the Allied war effort was significant both in terms of manpower and facilities supported in the state. Prisoner of war camps were operated at Camp Florence and Papago Park, and there was an internment camp to house Japanese-Americans, most of them citizens, who had been forcibly deported from the West Coast.

The war years provided great economic stimulus, both because of the numbers of troops at camps in the state, and increase in demand, and the expansion of wartime demand for such materials as copper and other metals. Industries expanded, adding to the state's recovery from the Great Depression.

Hispanics

During the war, Mexican-American community organizations promoted efforts to support American troops abroad. They worked both to support the war effort materially and to provide moral support for young American men fighting the war, especially their young Mexican-American men from local communities. Some community projects were cooperative between Anglo and Hispanic communities, but most were localized within the Mexican-American community.[1] Mexican-American women also organized to assist their servicemen and the war effort; an underlying goal of Tucson's Spanish-American Mothers and Wives Association was the reinforcement of the woman's role in Spanish-Mexican culture. Members raised thousands of dollars, wrote letters, and joined in numerous celebrations of their culture and their support for Mexican-American servicemen. Membership reached more than 300 during the war. The organization stopped operating in 1976.[2]

Casualties

Army and Air Forces[3]
County Killed in
Action (KIA)
Died of
Wounds (DOW)
Died of
Injuries (DOI)
Died,
Non-Battle (DNB)
Finding of
Death (FOD)
Missing in
Action (MIA)
Total
Apache 27 3 20 1 51
Cochise 68 8 24 10 1 111
Coconino 31 14 4 49
Gila 47 12 21 7 87
Graham 31 4 12 1 1 49
Greenlee 18 4 6 2 1 31
Maricopa 277 35 161 40 1 514
Mohave 9 2 9 2 22
Navajo 36 5 17 6 64
Pima 145 13 1 67 12 1 239
Pinal 66 15 32 2 115
Santa Cruz 28 1 13 1 43
Yavapai 47 4 22 7 80
Yuma 55 6 1 13 5 80
State at Large 31 3 33 8 3 78
Total 916 115 2 464 108 8 1613
Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard[4]
Type Total
Killed in Action (KIA) 27
Killed in Prison Camps 11
Missing in Action (MIA) 17
Wounded in Action (WIA) 41
Released from Prison Camps 17
Total 113

Prisoner of war camps

Arizona's Camp Florence, on the Florence Military Reservation, was the first permanent alien enemy camp constructed during World War II. Construction began during 1942 to house 3000 internees, with room to expand to 6000. The initial construction budget was $4.8 million. The United States did not detain numerous enemy aliens here, so the Army used Camp Florence as a POW camp.[5]

Gallery

See also

References

  1. ^ Christine Marín, "Mexican Americans on the Home Front: Community Organizations in Arizona During World War II," Perspectives in Mexican American Studies (1993) 4:75–92
  2. ^ Julie A. Campbell, "Madres Y Esposas: Tucson's Spanish-American Mothers and Wives Association," Journal of Arizona History (1990) 31#2 pp: 161–182,
  3. ^ "WWII Army Casualties: Arizona". Retrieved September 26, 2012.
  4. ^ "WWII Casualties: Arizona". Retrieved September 26, 2012.
  5. ^ George G. Lewis; John Mehwa (1982). "History of Prisoner of War Utilization by the United States Army 1776-1945" (PDF). Center of Military History, United States Army. Retrieved 16 August 2020.
  6. ^ Melton, Brad; Dean Smith. Arizona Goes to War: The Home Front and the Front Lines during World War II. University of Arizona Press. ISBN 978-0-8165-2190-6.