When the United States joined World War II, the manufacturing and trade of raw materials were in a state of uncertainty globally. Materials such as metal, cloth, cooking fat and rubber became more expensive and valuable to support the war.
Scrap collecting centers were made across the U.S. which encouraged the citizens to contribute to war efforts by collecting and submitting scrap materials such as rubber to make tires, clothing to make cleaning rags, nylon and silk stockings to make parachutes, leftover cooking fat to make explosives and iron to make to manufacture steel and other products. People were encouraged to imagine their household items being transformed into armor and weaponry for their soldiers and sailors in harm’s way. These drives served as morale boosters, patriotic unity and involved everyone in contributing to the war effort.
Leslie Jones, a Staff photographer for the Boston Herald-Traveler, photographed the locals in Boston supporting the war by collecting scrap metal. Take a look at the photos below in which Bostonians contributing scrap metal, fences and other unused items.