Did you know that the federal government implemented a shoe rationing program in 1943? Did you know that in 1917 men were called for examination (draft) with a notification placed in their local newspaper? Did you know that exemptions from the draft were issued to married men, except those who recently married and that notification was printed in the local newspaper as were denials of exemptions. Did you know that in 1942 many towns on Long Island relaxed their zoning laws to encourage people to raise chickens for personal use. Did you know that Brindley Field was a WWI airfield that operated in Commack and that on August 16, 1918 there was a plane crash in a hayfield on Havermeyer’s farm and that a plaque commemorating that event is located on Havermeyer Lane?
1943 - Long Island Faces Shoe Rationing
“On February 7, 1943, the federal government announced that shoe rationing was going into effect nationwide starting at 3:00 p.m. that day. Because the announcement was made on Sunday, Long Island shoppers had no chance to stock up. Even Nassau County Rationing Administrator told Newsday he didn’t know about the new policy until he heard about it on the radio. However beginning Tuesday, February 9, sutures who could produce a particular coupon, No. 17, from their Sugar-Coffee-Shoe ration book were allowed to buy shoes - although their next pair could not be purchased until June 15. And manufacturers were only permitted to make shoes in “essential” colors: white, black, town brown, and Army russet and in styles which used little or no leather.” It Happened on Long Island, Newsday April 23, 2004. (The military required the leather for shoes, military boots and flight jackets.)
The Smithtown 350 Foundation has put together an exhibit “Salute to Smithtown Veterans” that will open Sunday, November 8 at 77 W Main St at 3pm. The exhibit will run thru November 13. It is filled with information and memorabilia about how our Town and residents have participated in the military. The committee under the leadership of Town Historian Bradley Harris has put together a unique collection for you to enjoy. This event is complimentary and open to the public. For more information