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  1930s 1940s 1950s 
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American Cycles 1940s
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These Timelines are a detailed look at the time and the influence of Cycles. Significant events of the decade are analyzed through Twelve categories that serve as a kaleidoscopic lens through time, (see the clickable links above), as well as the position of Cycles at the time, (see the clickable folder links in the upper left corner). You can read and link up and down vertically through this Timeline, or, you can go any Category and link horizontally to the same Category in other Timelines (links are provided at the head of each Category). This cross linking is designed to provide a fast and easy way to make reading fun and interesting.

See the go to Overview here link near the top for a brief look at Cycles for this decade.

See the Matrix links above left for navigating through all Overviews and Timelines by Time, Subject, or Cycle as described in Introduction to Part II).

Note to readers: Work from the Kala-Rhythm archives is being offered here in the Timelines for the first time. We are allowing a view into the Timelines now by posting both the finished and the unfinished pages of the Timelines as editing from our references continues.  Unfinished pages (like this one) contain raw data from history sources to which we give credit in our "biblio/webography". Check back for updates to this and other pages.


A time when a social hypothalamus kicked in to respond to an emergency.


 1940 FDR re-elected Pres of the US for third term defeating Wendell Willkie.

1944 R re-elected for fourth term, w Truman VP.

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1940 John L. Lewis, anti-Roosevelt labor leader, resigns as head of CIO after election

1940 Congress establishes the Fish and Wildlife Service to develop and administer a wildlife conservation program.

1940 Congress creates the Selective Service System, the first US peacetime program of compulsory military service. It requires all men between ages 21 and 36 to register.

1940 US Office of Production Management for Defense is set up to coordinate work in defense plants. It is authorized to send aid to countries fighting the Axis Powers.

1940 National Defense Advisory Commission coordinates US civilian defense protection.

9/16/?? In addition to increased funding for the the military that came earlier this year, Roosevelt sings the Selective Training and Service Act *or Burke-Wadsworth Act), requiring men between the ages of 21-35 to register for military training.  Only the day before, Canada had begun to call up men between the ages 21-24, and the USSR had announced its intention to conscript young men aged 19-20.

11/5/40 In the election, Roosevelt receives 27,244,160 pop votes to Willkie’s 22,305,198, and takes 449 electoral college votes to Willkie’s 82.

1941 FDR wins third term w 27 million, Willkie gains 22 million.

1941 Thousand join the nation's industries that call for more workers; because of rising rents and the unavailability of bldg, many are forced to live in tents an tarpaper cities, raw-wood shacks, unused barns, garages, warehouses, and chicken coops.

4/25/45  Pres R died in Warm Springs, GA, on the 83rd day of his fourth term; he was 63.

1945 Communist Party was reestablished by the Communist Political Association, which voted to disband itself.

1943 Pay-as-you-go income tax system instituted in US.


1941 first peace time draft begins.

1941 FDR Declares state of "Limited National Emergency"

1941  After the opening of the Russian front, the peacetime draft is accelerated; "Uncle Sam Needs You" signs are posted in all public places.

1941 Pearl Harbor statistic: 1,500 civilians killed, 1,500 inured; 5 battleships sunk or beached (Arizona, Oklahoma, California, Nevada, West Virginia), 11 smaller ships destroyed, 3 ships damaged so as to be unusable; 177 planes destroyed; 91 navy officers killed, 20 wounded; 2,638 enlisted men dead, 636 wounded; 168 army men killed, 223 wounded, 26 missing. TRIRHYTHMIC LOW

1942 Manila Falls, MacArthur retreats to Bataan.

1942 War Production Board is established / board stops all non-essential building

1942 WACS, WAVES, APARS recruit.

1942 US government transfers more than 100,000 Niseis (Japanese Americans) from West Coast to inland camps.

1942 Gov wartime agencies take control of housing, alien property, shipping and transportation, foreign relief, censorship, and scientific research.

1942 Gen MacArthur is made commander of Allied forces in Southwest Pacific.

1942 Congress enacts measures forming Women's auxiliary corps of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard

1942 Congress lowers draft age to 18.

1942 FBI captures German saboteurs brought by submarines to coasts of FL and Long Island, NY. 6 are executed and 2 imprisoned.

1942 400,000 Am troops land in North Africa; Anglo-American forces take Tripoli and Tunis, the Germans evacuate North Africa (May 1943).

1943 Gen Eisenhower becomes Commander-in-Chief of all Allied forces in North Africa. US forces capture Bizerte, Tunisia, and combine w the British to drive the Axis forces out of Africa.

1943 US bombers sink Japanese convoy of 22 ships at the Battle of Bismarck Sea.

1943 Burma declares war on the US.

1943 US planes bomb Rome and Rumania's Ploesti oilfields.

1942 Pres R repeals Chinese Exclusion Acts.

1943 Am planes make 64,000 sorties and drop 55,000 tons of bombs during the year.       

1943 The Am Jewish Congress reports that over 3 million Jews have been killed by the Nazis.

1943 FDR and Churchill meet at Casablanca and set goal of unconditional surrender

1943 Japanese collapse on Guadalcanal.

1944 Congress creates new rank, General of the Army ("five-star general"), for Generals Eisenhower, Henry ("Hap") Arnold, MacArthur, and George C. Marshall.

1945 US armed forces tot 7.2 million War casualties, 292,000 killed or missing,   613,611 wounded.

1. Political  1940s Physical Cycle top    

Physical Low (1929 - 1943)

10/17/41 The US destroyer “Kearney” is torpedoed by a German U-Boat off Iceland; although the destroyer does not sink, 11 Ams are killed.  This attack comes only weeks after the US Navy had announced its intention to protect all shipping as far east as Iceland.

10/30/40 The US destroyer “Reuben James,” on convoy duty off Iceland, is sunk by a German U-Boat, with the loss of 100 Americans.

Physical Upward Crossover (March 21, 1943 - March 21, 1944)

8/1/43 Black Experience:  A rumor of a murder in Harlem sparks a race riot that ends w five people killed, 410 injured, and some $5,000,000 in damage.

Physical High (1943 - 1957)

1/16/44 Gen Dwight Eisenhower arrives in London to take up the post of Sup Commander, Allied Expeditionary Force, and lead what will become known as the crusade in Europe to free the Continent from the German conquest.

3/6/44 With some 800 fighter planes supporting them, 660 US bombers, make the first US raid on Berlin.  A second such raid will be made on march 8, and US losses on both raids amount to some 10 percent.  But these and the radicals that follow almost daily on German cities will gradually weaken the Germans’ will to resist.

6/6 44 D-Day Operation Overlord, the invasion of the Continent, begins just after midnight w the descent of two US airborne divisions, and in the early hours of the morning with some 4000 invasion ships plus 600 warships, at least 10,000 planes (only one of which is shot down by the German Air Force) and about 176,000 Allied troops.  It is the largest such invasion force in history, and the day itself is marked by both epic movements and statistics and by individual acts of heroism.  The landings take place along a series  of beaches in Normandy between Cherbourg and LeHavre, and although the Germans have had some warning they have not concentrated on a unified strategy. 

6/10/44 The two US beachhead armies - those from Omaha and Utah Beaches - link, and the Allies forces are now ready to present a solid line to move against the Germans.  In effect, from this point on, and w many delays and a few setbacks, the Allied forces will move inexorably eastward until Germany surrenders in May 1945.

6/15/44 US Super-fortresses, B-29s based on China, bomb Yawatta, the first such air raid on a Japanese main island.  In the Marianas, US forces land on Saipan; by the time the island falls on July 9, the US will have suffered some 3400 dead, but the Japanese will have 27,000 dead.

8/10/44 The island of Guan is retaken by US forces after some 20 days of fierce fighting; the Japanese have lost some 17,000 men (w only 500 surrendering) and the US  have lost 1214 killed and some 6000 wounded, Guan had fallen to the Japanese on Dec 13, 1941, so its recapture is of special significance to the Allied cause.

9/12/44 The US Army enter Germany for the first time, advancing only a few miles beyond the border between Trier and Aachen.

1944 D-Day; landing in Normandy June 6 (over 700 ships and 4,000 landing craft involved.

1944 US troops establish beachheads at Utah Beach and Omaha Beach during Allied invasion of Western Europe (D-day).

2/19 - 3/16/1945 one of hardest fought battles of entire war, US Marines capture Pacific island of Iwo Jima, landing flat on Mount Suribachi creates image of triumph that will become a symbol of fighting in Far East during WW II.

3/7/45 Remagen Bridge over the Rhine R. was crossed by the US First Army. Not since the days of Napoleon had an invading army crossed the Rhine.

3/16/45 Iwo Jima fell to the US Marines after 35 days of bitter and bloody fighting. More than 4,000 Marines were killed, 15,000 wounded. The Japanese last more than 20,000 men.

4/1/45 Okinawa was invaded by US forces.

5/8/45 On the day, known as V-E Day, for victory in Europe, the instrument of unconditional surrender was ratified in Berlin, ending the European phase of World War II.

6/21/45 Jap forces on Okinawa surrendered after two and a half months of deadly struggle. More than 100,000 Jap soldiers were killed. Am deaths ran to almost 13,000, w nearly 40,000 wounded.

7/5/45 Philippine Islands declared liberated by Gen Douglas MacArthur. In then months of fighting since the first Am landings st Leyte, more than 400,000 Jap soldiers had been killed and upward of 12,000 Americans had lost their lives.

7/16/45 First atomic bomb was detonated near Alamogord, New Mexico, at 5:30 am.

1945 US drops atomic bombs on Hiroshima Aug 6 and Nagasaki Aug 9.

4/24/45 The United Nations conference opened San France. with delegates from 50 nations attending. The UN charter was signed June 26.     The United Nations charter was ratified by the US Senate by a vote of 89 to 2.

8/6/45 Hiroshima Jap, was destroyed by the first atomic bomb to be used in war.

8/15/V-J Day, for victory over Jap, marked the end of the Pacific phase of WW II.

9/2/45 formal document of surrender signed aboard USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay.

5/7/45 The world rejoices as the Germans surrender to the Allies at Rheims, France.  General Dwight D. Eisenhower accepts for the Allied forces.

6/21/45 After some 25,000 Americans die and 160,000 Jap lose their lives, the Jap surrender Okinawa to the US army.

8/6/45 The US Air Force drops an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima, Jap.  This is the first application of atomic technology and the magnitude of destruction astounds even those working on the Manhattan Project.

8/9/45 Nagasaki, Jap, is partly destroyed by a second atomic bomb.  The US awaits the response of the Jap government to this show of force.

1. Political  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

1. Political  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

1. Political  1940s Polyrhythms top    

Trirhythmic Low (1937 - 1943)

The attack on Pearl Harbor came as a surprise when were not ready. There was amazement at how we could have been so open and unaware. This came while the intellectual cycle was at the bottom.


12/7/41 On Sunday morning, 7:55 Honolulu time, Jap bombers attack Peal Harbor, the major US naval base in Hawaii.  Nineteen US ships *including 6 battleships) are sunk or disable; some 150 planes are destroyed; 2403 soldiers, sailor and civilians are killed, 1178 are wounded.  Other Japanese planes and ships attack US bases in the Philippines, Guan and Midway, as well as British bases in Hong Kong and the Malay Peninsula.

1/26/42 The commission that has been investigating the disaster at Pearl Harbor releases its finding.  Both Gen Short, then commander of the Army’s Hawaiian department, and Admiral Kimmel, then commander in chief of the US fleet in the Pacific, are found to have been guilty of dereliction of duty.  But both have already been dismissed from active duty, and the debate over the responsibility and blame for decisions taken or not taken will in fact never completely cease.  Even 40 years later, historians and researchers will be writing to assign blame, some actually claiming that Roosevelt knew details of the imminent attack far enough in advance to warn the military but chose not to in order to force the US in to the war.  But there is never any solid evidence of the such literal foreknowledge; what does seem apparent in the years that follow is that many men running the US government and limitary were derelict in their duty.

12/8/41 Pres R appears before a special joint session of Congress an, declaring December 7 “a day that shall live in infamy,” asks that the US declare war against Japan.  The Senate votes to approve 82-0, the House of reps 388-1 (the lone dissenter being the pacifist Jeanette Rankin, the first woman elected a Rep and who also voted against the US entering the war in 1917).  With this formal declaration of war, Pres R begins to direct every branch of the US military and government toward this one effort.

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1940 DJIA high 152, low 113  GNP +10%  inflation +).4%  unemployment 14.6%

1940 unemployment: 8,120,000  GNP: $99.7 billion    fed budget: $13.2 billion    national debt: $43.0 billion    prime rate: 0.6%  CPI  (1967 = 100): 42

1940 US GNP 100.6 (up 1-% from 1939);

6/25/40 The Fair Employment Practices Committee is established by executive order to prevent discrimination due to race, creed or color in defense-related work.

1943 US Supreme Court rules that children need not salute flag in schools if it is against their religion, in case brought by Jehovah's Witnesses.

1944 World Bank is created at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, conference.

 Outside the USA and transport, coal remained the dominant source of power in this period; as late as 1940, three-quarters of the world's energy was provided by coal and less than 20% by oil.


1941 Off of Price Administration and Civilian Supply is set up. It immediately freezes steel prices and later announces tire rationing to conserve rubber.

1941 John L. Lewis threaten coal strike, FDR intervenes.

1941 U.S. Declares war on Japan,  Germany and Italy declare war on US., US declares war on Germany and Japan.

1941 US Office of Price Administration (OPA) established to regulate prices w Leon Henderson as its head: OPA freezes price of steel; rubber rationing instituted.

1941 US Savings Bonds and Stamps go on sale. 

1941 draft is extended, men 18-65 must register, those 20-44 may serve.

1941 $10 billion is appropriated for defense.

1941 With the shortage of certain metals, use of plastics increases; Philip Wrigley, ingum packaging, introduces cellophane in place of tinfoil; Lucky Strike substitutes a white and red bull's-eye logo for its green and red one, since green ink contains metal.

1941 W the improvement in the economy, car sales soar; alcohol consumption also rises.

1941 Henry Ford, for the first time, agrees to negotiate w a union.

1941 Chrysler begins builds the M-3 tank; GM, the B-25 bomber; Fore, Pratt Whitney engines.

1942 The OPA stops all car and truck production; sug, tire and gas rationing beings.

1942 Boy Scouts savage 150,000 tons of wastepaper; children receive 50 cents a pound per aluminum foil ball.

1941 US Supreme Court upholds Federal Wage and Hour Law restricting work of 16 and 18 year olds and setting minimum wage for businesses engage in interstate commerce.

1942 On billion pounds of plastics are produced for use in everything from airplanes to hose nozzles; metal is replaced in every possible way.

1942 Rationing of foods and materials needed for the war effort begins; sugar, coffee, fuel oil, gasoline, butter, meats, cheese, canned foods, and finally, shoes are rationed.

2. Business & Economy  1940s Physical Cycle top    

Physical Upward Crossover (March 21, 1943- March 21, 1944)

1943 As blacks move into the Detroit plants, racial tensions heighten; a riot develops when a black is killed for using a white swimming area. [what mo.?]

1943 Race riots break out in several major US cities whose labor population has been bolstered by influx of southern Blacks. [what mo.?

6/20-22/43 Black Experience:  Whites protesting the employment of of blacks in Detroit, Michigan, clash w blacks and before Federal troops can put down the ensuing riot and rampage, 34 people are dead.

12/27/43 The Fed Gov seizes the nation’s railroads threatened w a shutdown by striking workers.

Physical High (1943 - 1957

9/45 Pre T issues exec order proclaiming fed authority over all national resources beyond the continental shelf.

1943 Despite the 28-ounce allowance per week, meat consumption rises to 128.9 pounds per year.

1943 With the combined goods scarcity and improved economy, long lines develop at groceries, movies, bars, and restaurants; cabs are obliged to take as many passengers as they can carry; long-distance calls are limited to five minutes.

1943 The manpower shortage stimulates "pampering" of employees; music is piped into factories, and coffee breaks and suggestion boxes are instituted, as well as awards and fringe benefits. FDR orders a minimum 48-hour work week in war plants.

1944 With 3.5 million women working alongside 6 million men on assembly lines, production capacities change. Cargo ships are completed in 17 days, bombers in 13 days, For the working woman, slacks becomes, as Max Lerner puts it, a "badge of honor."

1944 Nearly half the steel, tin, and paper needed for the war are provided by people salvaging goods.

1945 Women auto workers in Detroit, laid off because of returning war veterans, stage a march w posters such as "Stop Discrimination because of Sex."

1945 Moving to restore the civilian econ, Pres T ordered full restoration of civilian consumer prod and collective bargaining, and a return of free markets.

1945 Rationing ends for most goods.

8/45 Gen MacArthur named Supreme Commander of Allied Powers in Japan.

2. Business & Economy  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

2. Business & Economy  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

2. Business & Economy  1940s Polyrhythms top    

Physo-Intellectual Low - Rising (1940 1950)

1940 McDonald's is started by Pasadena movie owners Richard and Maurice McDonald.

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The significant development of the nuclear age was the explosion of the first atomic bomb. The Manhattan Project developed this in the Fourth Quarter of the Intellectual Cycle, not the First, (thought there was a Physical First Quarter). This was an emergency development in response to World War II, and external development. Not all developments, therefore, are limited to cyclical stages.


An an estimated 30,000,000 US homes now have radios.


1943 First nuclear reactor established at Chicago U.

1943 First automatic computer dev in the USA

1943 magnetic recording tape dev [what country?]

1944 first atomic bomb, code-named "Trinity," exploded near Alamogordo, New Mexico Three weeks latter, a U-235 atomic bomb (equal to 20,000 tons of TNT) is dropped on Hiroshima, Japan. Three days after this, a plutonium gassed A-bomb is dropped on Nagasaki, Japan. Bothe cities are destroyed and more than 130,000 people are dead or missing as a result of the most powerful weapons ever used in a war.

1945 Aside fr the war victory, the biggest news of the year was the use of atomic energy. Scientists questioned the moral and ethical value of their contribution to victory in the war. At first , the pub refused to share the alarm of the physicists, believing that the people who had created this new force would soon tell the world how to control it. Unfortunately, this did not come to pass.

1940 First electron microscope demonstrated by Radio Corporation of America, Camden, NJ.

1940 V. Zworykin and James Hillier invent the electron microscope.

1941 Bush heads the newly-formed Office of Scientific Research and Development.          

1942 The first electronic brain or automatic computer developed in the US.  

1942 magnetic recording tape invented.

1942 The first safe self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction is accomplished by Enrico Fermi, Edward Teller, and Leo Szilard, at the U of Chicago.


1945 The first atomic bomb exploded in the Alamogordo, New Mexico, desert is a plutonium bomb; its power (equal to 20,000 tons of TNT) exceeds expectations.

1945 F. Block, William Hansen, and Martin Packard devise the principle of nuclear magnetic resonance (nuclear inductions).

1945 After months of secret research, atomic scientists see results of efforts on the Manhattan Project; detonation of first atomic bomb at Alamogordo, New Mexico. Among contributors are J. Robert Oppenheimer, in charge of weapons laboratory at Los Alamos.

 1945 Langmuir experiments with cloud-seeding, using chemicals such as silver iodide or sold carbon dioxide (dry ice) to cause rain or snow artificially.

1945 Vitamin A is synthesized.

1945 RCA's new camera, the image orthicon, has 100 times the sensitivity of the previous camera, dev in the 1920s.

1942 tubeless tires are successfully tested.

1942 Magnetic recording tape is introduced.

 In the 1940s several different antibiotics were discovered, including streptomycin, which is particularly useful in controlling whooping cough and stomach aches.

1940 New combustion chamber for jet engines designed [AM?}

1941 Louis Fielse, at Harvard, develops napalm, a jellylike mixture of gasoline and palm oils that sticks to its target until it burns out.

1941 "Manhattan Project" of intensive atomic research begins.

1942 Erico Fermi (US) splits the atom.

1942 Bell Aircraft tests first US jet plane.

1942 Bazookas, shoulder-held rocket containers used as antitank weapons, are dev.

1942 Radar comes into operational use.

1942 A jet-propelled plane is tested by Bell Aircraft.

Jets 1st tested un US 1942. In June 1944 a Lockheed P-80 propelled fighters were ordered by US Air Force (1947);

1943 Penicillin successfully used in the treatment of chronic diseases [Am?]

1943 US War Labor Board orders coal mines to be taken over by the government when 0.5 million miners strike.

1943 Selma Waksman discovers streptomycin and coins the term "antibiotic: for the actinomycete streptomyces griseus.

1943 Sulfa is credited w an extraordinary reduction of US Army fatalities.

1943 The tiny town of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, is suddenly populated by 50,000 scientists and aides, all conducting secret atomic research.

1943 Oppenheiner organizes the Manhattan Projects' top-secret Weapons Lab in Los Alamos, New Mexico.

1944 Howard Aiken, mathematician, invents the "Mark I," an automatic calculator that is the forerunner of the digital computers.

1944 A mathematical "robot," a giant, automatic, sequence-controlled computer with a 50-foot panel of knobs, gears, and switches, is created at Harvard by Howard Aiken and IBM engineers.


In 1944 Harvard University engineering professor Howard Aiken develops the first digital computer, the operation of which was controlled by mechanical and electrical apparatus. Two years later research engineers at the University of ?? made the first totally electronic digital computer, whose circuits were controlled by vacuum tubes.


1944 DNA, the basic material of heredity, is isolated by Oswald Avery, Rockefeller Institute.

3. Science & Technology  1940s Physical Cycle top    

Physical 1st Qtr. Foundation (1943 - 1950)

1943 DDT is introduced in the US and hailed as a boon to farmers.

1943 Large-scale production of penicillin begins to meet the demand as the drug is being used to treat a variety of infectious diseases.

1943 Polyethylene plastic is introduced. 

1945 The navy reports a "complete cure" for cholera.

1945 Dr. William Robbins reports the dev of six new antibiotics; pleurotin, grisic acid, pleurin, irpexin, obtusin, and corticin; streptomycin, corticin, and pleurotin are marketed.

1945 Penicillin, previously distributed to the armed forces, becomes more available to the civilian pop.

3. Science & Technology  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

3. Science & Technology  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

3. Science & Technology  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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1940 First successful helicopter flight in US by Vought-Sikorsky Corporation.

1942 Henry J. Kaiser industrialist, develops  techniques for building 10,000-ton Liberty Ships in four days. First ones launched in 1943.

4. Mechanical  1940s Physical Cycle top    

Physical 1st Qtr. Foundation (1943 - 1950)

1942-45 Rocket in World War II. "Bazooka," 1st US rocket fun, dev by Capt. L. A. Skinner and C. N. Kickman; standardized, 1942. Germans 1st used V-1, 250-400-mph pilot-less aircraft, 12 June 1944, 6 days after D-Day; shot down by Allied gunners aided by radar, M-9 director, and proximity fuse. V-2 (long-range rocket, 3.4000 mph) began to land in London on 12 Sept. 1944. Rocket and guided-missile experiments pushed in postwar period US Navy guided missiles reported used in combat in Korea (1 Sept, 1952).

1942-60 Jet Planes. Jet engine 1st produced by Brit inventor, Frank Whittle, 1937. Jets 1st tested un US 1942. In June 1944 a Lockheed P-80 propelled fighters were ordered by US Air Force (1947); bombers dev (1947). By 1952, US had dev B-52 bomber, with 8 turbojet engines, ceiling 50,000 ft., speed c. 600 mph.; B-47, c. 700 mph. B-70 supersonic heavy bomber (designed for speeds exceeding 2,000 mph) program drastically restricted by gavt. 1 Dec. 1959. Bell X-2 rocket-powered research airplane set speed record in excess of 2,100 mph (1956); North American X-15 rocket plane made 1st successful flight under own power 17 Sept. 1959. Commercial jet transport initiated 15 Aug. 1958 w Boeing 707 (transatlantic service by Pan American Airways, 26 Oct. 1958), followed by Douglas DC-8 (1959), and Convair 880 (TWA, 1961).

1943 Kaiser develops techniques of pre-fabrication that allow him to build a 100,000-ton "Liberty ship in 4 days.

1944 Theodore Von Karman, "Father of the Supersonic Age," helps establish the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in CA.

1944 The US Army announces the dev of a jet-propelled, prop-less plane.

1941 Yale, Harvard, and Princeton decide to cut their programs from four to three years by staying in session all year round.

4. Mechanical  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

4. Mechanical  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

4. Mechanical  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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5. Education  1940s Physical Cycle top    

5. Education  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

5. Education  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

Intellectual Low (1929 - 1951)

12/29/40 Illiteracy in the US has reached a new low of 4.2 percent (down from 15.8 percent in 1870).

Intellectual XXXward Crossover (March 21, 1000- March 21, 1000)


5. Education  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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Perhaps it was the concomitant anxieties of World War II and the Cold War that influenced many Americans to recommit themselves to organized religion from 1940 to 1960, membership in churches and synagogues increased substantially. One manifestation of the surge in religious awakening was a tide of revivalism.

6. Religion & Spirituality  1940s Physical Cycle top    

6. Religion & Spirituality  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

6. Religion & Spirituality  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

6. Religion & Spirituality  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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1943 US Army engineers complete the Pentagon bldg. This 5-sided bldg, headquarters of the Dept of Def, remains the largest office bldg in the world.

1943 Transportation difficulties created by the war curtail international exhibitions, w a resulting emphasis in the US on native art and patriotic themes.

7. Arts & Design  1940s Physical Cycle top    

7. Arts & Design  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

7. Arts & Design  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

7. Arts & Design  1940s Polyrhythms top    

Trirhythmic string of
4th Qtr. Alternatives
(1936 - 1955)

During the mid-1940s and the 1950s many Am painters turned from social criticism to a new movement called abstract expressionism. The traditional subject matter of painting, such as the human body, still life, or a rural scene, was lf little or no concern. Within a basic structure of nonrepresentational internet, the focus was upon such things as the utilization of space, of dimension ( a huge canvas was often preferred), of surface textures of colors. Abstract expressionism was the first major movement in American pointing whose practitioners emphatically declined to imitate a European style. Indeed, the abstract expressionists affected the trend of painting outside the US, exerting such influence that the painting center of the world shifted from Paris to NYC.

 Painters like Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Arshile Gorky worked in the new form of abstract expressionism. The music world saw the debuts of Leonard Bernstein, Richard Tucker, Jan Peerce, and Lorin Maazel (age 11), and premiers of Paul Hindemith, Bela Bartal, Arnold Schoenberg, and Igor Stravinsky, all now residing in the United States.


The first film of experimentalist Orson Welles, was "Citizen Kane" (1941), which is considered by virtually all critics one of the very greatest motion pictures ever made. The film was loosely based on the life or newspaper publisher William Randolph Hearst.

1940 First large-scale urban college bldg. of modern design, Hunter College, is built in NYC.

1940 Important abstract expressionist painters of the time include Lore MacIcer, Morris Graves, and Hans Hofmann.

1941 Orson Welles directs and stars in "Citizen Kane," a film which introduces many new techniques.

1941 "Doomsday," a painting by impressionist Karl Knaths, shows Cubist influences.

1943 Robert Motherwell, painter, brings abstract expressionism in a new direction w his most famous work, "Pancho Villa, Dead and Alive."

1943 Jackson Pollock's first one-man show

1943 Jackson Pollock, "Pasiphae," "Search for a Symbol," "The She-Wolf."

1943 "Pharmacy," a work by assemblage sculptor Joseph Cornell, incorporates mirrors to give unusual effects.

1943 Frank Lloyd Wright: Southern College, Lakeland, Fla.

1944 Arshile Gorky, "Water of the Flowery Mill." Oil painting of abstract style, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. [Am?]

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Book publishing had a boom year, 1945, with the paperback trade continuing to create hundreds of thousands of book buyers.

1940 bestseller, "The Grapes of Wrath," John Steinbeck  / "You Can't Go Home Again," Thomas Wolfe (posthumous)

1940 Eugene O'Neill: "Long Day's Journey into Night" / Ernest Hemingway: "For Whom the Bell Tolls" (his most famous work) / Upton Sinclair: "World's End," first of the Lanny Budd novels.

1940 Carl Sandburg: "Abraham Lincoln: The War Years," Pulitzer Prize history.

1941 Upton Sinclair, "Between Two Worlds"

1941 Howard Fast, novelist, pubs "The Last Frontier," a historical novel about the mistreatment of the Indians.

1942 C. S. Lewis "The Screwtape Letters"

1944 Paper shortages stimulate publishers' experiments w soft-cover books.

1944 Boston bans "Forever Amber: and "Strange Fruit," the latter about the love between a white man and black woman.

1944 Tennessee Williams, "The Glass Menagerie," his first successful work.

8. Literature & Publication  1940s Physical Cycle top    

8. Literature & Publication  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

8. Literature & Publication  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

8. Literature & Publication  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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Betty Grable and Rita Hayworth were the sex symbols of the early decade, and their pinups were GI favorites;


By the end of the twenties there were some 13 million radios in American homes. The first broadcasting station had opened in Pittsburgh in 1920; by 1940 there were nearly 900 radio stations and 52 million sets in use.


1940 Nickel jukeboxes appear in taverns, tearooms, variety store, gas stations, restaurants, and barber shops.   The popular Lindy Hop generates Saturday night social clubs; new dances including La Varsonviana; the rhumba peals in popularity; Arthur Murray creates the "Americonga" and "Rhumba Reel."


First drive in theater built in New Jersey, 1941? (December?)

1941 FCC authorizes TV broadcasting. By the end of the year, 1 million sets are sold.

1942 The US becomes the world music center and shelter for foreign musicians.

1942 Othello, with Paul Robeson and Uta Hagen, has the longest Broadway run of any Shakespeare play to date.

9. Entertainment  1940s Physical Cycle top    

Physical High (1943 - 1957)

In the 1940s a revolution in American musical theater was effect by the team of Rodgers and Hammerstein. In their first show together, "Oklahoma!, (1943)" which starred Alfred Drake, features the unforgettable songs "Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'," "The Surrey with the Fringe on Top" and People Will Say We're in Love." In her contribution to "Oklahoma!" ballet choreographer Agnes de Mille not only revolutionized the style of dance in musicals but also, in using dance to advance the plot, played a significant role in bringing about a basic change in musical theater itself.

During the 1940s Country and Western music began to attract nationwide attention. The growing popularity was due in large part to the talent of singer Jimmie Rodgers.

1941 W soaring box office receipts Hollywood can barely produce films fast enough, and many westerns and grade B and C films are released.


Physical 1st Qtr. Foundation (1943 - 1950)

1943 Rodgers and Hammerstein: "Oklahoma!," musical play, New York (reached 2,248 consecutive performances), special Pulitzer Prize (1944).

1943 Jitterbug is the most popular dance. As part of the dance the man swings his partner over his back and between his legs.

1943 The musical “Oklahoma,” by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, opens on Broadway and becomes an immediate and long-running popular and critical hit; it also stands as a milestone in Merinda musical theater by leading musical away fr show business glitter and into more indigenous American subjects.

Hollywood retained its rep for making the world's best motion picture musicals. some the most tastefully crafted among this type were "Meet Me in St. Louis" (1944).

1945 Hollywood, hungry for plots, was willing to pay as much as $250,000 for rights to a good story. W such prizes before them, writers tailored their techniques to fit the requirements of the screen. The result, by an large, was undistinguished. By war's end, the Hollywood Victory Committee had arraigned for 55,619 personal appearances of movie stars at bond rallies and military camps.

1945 Many families take their first vacations since Pearl Harbor; cabaret shows open in cities like Las Vegas, a by-product, in part, of the USO troop shows; motel construction increases.

1945 Dizzy Gillespie tours w his first big band. Bop is at its peak. Miles Davis goes to NY to study at Julliard. June Christy joins Stan Kenton; Charlie Shavers joins Tommy Dorsey.

1945 Frank Sinatra earns $13,5000 a week, almost $1 million a year.

9. Entertainment  1940s Emotional Cycle top    


Emotional 3rd Qtr. Review (1937 - 1946)

1940 Disney's "Fantasia," an animated expression of classical music, features Stokowski conducting the Philadelphia Orchestra. (unsuccessful).

1942 80 war movies are made.

1942 "Casablanca" made w Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman

Among the great movies of the decade - and perhaps of all time - were "Citizen Kane," (1941) , "The Grapes of Wrath," (1940) (for which dir. John Ford won an Oscar), and "Casablanca," (1942) as well as the revival favorites "The Maltese Falcon," and "Mildred Pierce." Many patriotic war movies appeared, such as "Mrs Miniver," "The Purple Heart," and "Guadalcanal Diary."


9. Entertainment  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

9. Entertainment  1940s Polyrhythms top    

Trirhythmic )

1943 Dance tempos are either very fast of slow, for the fox trot, polka, rhumba, samba, waltz, jitterbug, and Lindy hop, along with their variations, the Jersey jump, flea hop, job walk, victory walk, and "Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition" dance

Trirhythmic string of
4th Qtr. Alternatives
(1936 - 1955)

Music, which represents all the cycles, had heavy fourth quarter influence in the 1940s from the physical cycle (1936-1943), the emotional cycle (1946-1955), and the intellectual cycle (1940-1951). It was in this time period that one of the most striking examples of experimental and abstract forms of American music was developed, Progressive Jazz, also known as cool jazz. The 1949 recordings of Miles Davis marked its arrival.


1940 Duke Ellington becomes known as composer and jazz pianist.

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1944 Many retired major  leaguers return to active play, since many young players are now in the service.
1940 "Students derive no special benefit from intercollegiate football," says the U of Chicago, as it withdraws fromthe Big Ten.

1941 "Gentleman" Joe Louis, who defeats a contender a  month, becomes a national hero.  


10. Sports  1940s Physical Cycle top    


Physical High (1943 - 1957)

1944 Maurice Richard (Montreal Canadians) scores a record 50 goals in the 50-game season.

Sports attendance soared beyond 1920s levels. In football, the T-formation, validated by Sid Luckman in Chicago's 73-0 victory against Washington (1940), moved into prominence.

Physical 1st Qtr. Foundation (1943 - 1950)

1943 because of the war, spring training is held in the North for the first time.

10. Sports  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

10. Sports  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

10. Sports  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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1940 "air force blue" becomes popular Suit lapels are decorated with enamel shields in all colors; eagles appear on hatbands and purses. The times demand an emphasis on simplicity, economy, and practicality; short dresses, simple suits w pleated skirts; day dresses that can be worn at night w a muff or fur. New fashions including day dresses with aprons and pinafores and, at the other extreme, with aprons and pinafores and, at the other extreme, South Sea sarons (after Dorothy Lamour) in colorful slinky crepes that expose the bare midriff and uplift bosom. Hair is worn to the shoulder with big curls, piles on top of the head with curls and pompadour. or curls into a sausage in the back. Lips are modeled like Crawford's "Bow tie," in shades like "Regimented Red" (with matching polish); powder and rouge are applied over pancake makeup.

For men: Fashion are marked by anew conservatism; the granite gray or blue striped suit; solid or red, blue, and white striped ties worn in Windsor knots; and spread-collared white, blue, or blur-white striped shirts. Rayon is introduced for wrinkle-proof ties.


1941 government regulations call for austerity in the use of fabric in making clothes.


1942 Sales or women's trousers are five to ten times greater than last year.

1943 Two silhouette predominate: the slim, tubular look in knitted dresses or chemises with cinche belts, and the bulky look in box suits and coasts with heavy, loose fabrics. Hair is neat, folded at the ear, netted at the back, twisted into braids, or pinned on top of the head. Small tight hats and snoods remain fashionable. Later, the "versatile suit," snipped-in waist, short jacket, back hiked or pleated skirt, is popular. Woman  wear suits everywhere. Coarse arlon (the "officer's" style), or short (the "seaman's"). The fur-lined wool or canvas coast is new. Lounging teenage girls wear rolled-up jeans, sloppy shirttails, mixed shoes, and rag curlers.   for men: Male teens are offered the "zoot suit," a long, one-button jacket w large padded shoulders, peaked lapels, and high-waisted trousers ballooning at the knees and gripping at the ankles, worn w knee-length key chains, broad-brimmed hats, and wide silk ties against striped or colored shirts. (Popular with "hep cats"). Older men reject mustaches because of their current, fascist associations.

1943 Shoes are rationed a 3 pairs a year; new sneakers are unavailable because of the rubber shortage.

1944 W fabric still limited, three-quarter-length box coats and suits have false fronts; sleeveless dresses expose wide shoulders or have small shoulder caps. Chignons, as well as small pillbox hats and berets, draw attention to the face and makeup; the earring industry expands. Décolletage returns for birth day and evening wear. The concept of "separates," or interchangeable clothes, enters the fashion world.  For men: War Production Board specifications, since 1942: 23 3/4" length for size 37 jacket; no waistcoat; trousers 22" at the knee, 18 1/2" at the bottom, 35" inseam for 32" waist; no cuffs, pleats, tucks, or overlapping waistbands.


1945 Cropped jeans and pants w stockings in the same rib (foreshadowing tights) are shown.

11. Fashion  1940s Physical Cycle top    

11. Fashion  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

11. Fashion  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

11. Fashion  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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1940 pop 132 million (7.3% increase since 1930 - smallest increase since statistics were begun in 1790), including 0.5 million immigrants, mostly European refugees; Alien Registration Act show presence in US of 5 million aliens; farm 23.3%

More than 56% of people live in places of 2500 or more population.     1940 average life expectancy in US 64 ( from 49 in 1900)    1940 life expectancy male 60.8  female 68.2  births/1,000 19.4  marriages/1,000 12.1   divorces/1,000 2.0    deaths/1,000 12.1

1940 Oglethorpe U. (GA) deposits a bottle of beer, an encyclopedia, and a movie fan magazine along w thousand of other objects in its "Crypt of Civilization," a time capsule not to be opened until the year 8113.

1941 A 6-ton granite monument over the site of time capsule is unveiled in Flushing Meadow, Queens, NY. A souvenir of the NY World's Fair, capsule contains artifacts and info about 20th-century culture to be recovered in the year 6939.

1943 Friday's become "meatless days"; casseroles, fish, omelets, and soufflés becomes popular.

1943 With the paper shortage, few Xmas cards are available; women recycle their brown grocery bags.

1944 "Kilroy was here" graffiti moves out of pub bathrooms to billboards, buildings, phone booths, and construction fences, mythologizing the valor of the GI.

1944 Richard Bong, 25, surpasses Eddie Rickenbacker's 26-year-old record by destroying his 27th Japanese aircraft.

1944 Major hurricane w winds up to 134 mph strikes the Atlantic coast from Cape Hatteras, NC, to Canada, killing 390 at sea and about 50 on land. Damage estimate at $50 million.

1945 The shortage of an estimate 4,660,000 homes forces many into makeshift arrangements that range from "doubling up" to living in autos.

12. Lifestyles  1940s Physical Cycle top    

12. Lifestyles  1940s Emotional Cycle top    

12. Lifestyles  1940s Intellectual Cycle top    

12. Lifestyles  1940s Polyrhythms top    

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