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We shall win or we shall die

Date: 1942
Overall: 710 x 558 mm, 0.05 kg
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Purchased with USA Bicentennial Gift funds
Classification:Posters and postcards
Object Name: Poster
Object No: 00017806
Place Manufactured:United States

User Terms

    This American poster was designed to encourage people to invest in war bonds and help fund the campaign. A portrait of General MacArthur is shown in front of the patriotic colours of blue, white and red. This poster is trying to command people to invest money in the war effort and argues it is a matter of life and death.
    SignificanceThis is representative of how war celebrities and patriotic symbols were used in posters to gain support for the war.
    HistoryBetween 1941 and 1946 the War Finance Committee was responsible for raising money for the American war effort through a series of loan drives. In total over US$185 billion of securities were sold. By the end of World War II over 85 million Americans had invested in war bonds. No other country had as many people contribute.

    The sale of war bonds provided a way in which patriotic attitudes and the spirit of sacrifice could be expressed. Bonds became the primary method through which those on the home-front contributed to national defense and the war effort. Although initially the goal of the bond drives was to finance the war, their greatest accomplishment was the positive impact they had on the morale of home-front Americans.
    For the Government, war bond drives had the added benefit of lowering inflation. With more people employed in manufacturing and war related industries there was an increase in individual income at a time when domestic products were being rationed. Patriotic saving through the purchase of war bonds removed this excess money from circulation.

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