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Monday, March 5, 2012

1940's News Headlines

When I was 13 my mother was stationed at White Sands MissileRange (WSMR), New Mexico.  In the months leading up to our move, I was teased horribly about how I would glow in the dark by the time I left.  If that statement leaves you scratching your head, let me explain.  WSMR is a proving ground for missiles, and just a few short miles down the road is the Trinity Site. 

On 16 July, 1945 the United States tested its first atomic bomb at the Trinity Site.  We all know from history what happened a month later, and the struggles that we as a nation and the world have today due to nuclear armament.  So… I think we can all agree that I don’t need to go into that.

My time at WSMR was short but great, and no I don’t glow in the dark (slight twitch, but no glowing).  This led me to think that a lot of people really don’t know how beautiful, and remote, this place is.  WSMR, and White Sands National Monument, is located in the Tularosa Basin which lies between the Sacramento and San Andres Mountain ranges.  Simply put, it is a large white beach, with no water, and gorgeous views of mountains on all sides.  Bring your sled so you can go sliding down the dunes!  

My dad, me and our dog Sam
Organ Mts overlooking WSMR
Spending my 8th grade year on a closed post, at a post school, is an experience I will never forget.  I kick myself now for not getting out more to learn about, and see, the area.  However, at 13, I firmly was in the realm of boys, music, boys, driving my parents crazy, boys, soccer practice, and oh… did I mention… boys.  The post is no longer a closed post, and you can get passes in to see the missile park and museum.  If you are ever in the area, you should go and check it all out.  Alamogordo has a fantastic Space Museum too, go figure!

Alamogordo Army Airfield, WSMR, and the Trinity Site were not in existence in 1940.  I am curious to see who was in the area.  Who will you look up in the 1940 US Census?


 The 1940 US Census Community Project needs you!  Consider volunteering to index and spread the word.  Records will be released in 28 days!

*Image from wikimedia: "TRINITY PHOTOGRAPH - Alamogordo, NM - Trinity test, July 16, 1945 - "JUMBO," a 120-ton steel vessel, was designed to contain the explosion of the bomb's high explosive and permit recovery of the active material in case on nuclear failure." (was not used for this purpose during test)

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