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While air raids and bombing attacks may have been common experiences for Europeans during World War II, the continental U.S. didn’t get as much exposure to the actual fear of an air raid or bomb during the war.  While there was some coastal activity from the sea, some shelling in Oregon and balloon bombs that made it across the Pacific, it couldn’t compare with what took place overseas.  But fear lived on none the less, as there was enough activity following Pearl Harbor to put people on edge, including in Los Angeles.

During one night in February of 1942, the Battle of Los Angeles took place when, it was believed, an enemy attack was under way.  Air raid sirens, anti-aircraft fire, and jangled nerves in darkness served to put everyone on guard.  Turns out, most feel it was a false alarm, possibly caused by a stray weather balloon.  Whatever it was, that one fateful night is remembered each year at the Fort MacArthur Museum in San Pedro.  An old coastal Army post, the museum annually pays tribute during The Great Los Angeles Air Raid of 1942.

The Great Los Angeles Air Raid

I never had the opportunity to go before, as schedules didn’t match up.  This was my first foray to the event and I had a great time.  While the museum does a great job, it is the attendees and volunteers as much as the museum that really make you feel as if you’ve stepped back in time.  It isn’t an event for everyone – for some who lived in Europe during the war, like my in-laws, it wouldn’t be an experience they would likely care to relive.  However, it offers a perspective seldom experienced in the U.S. and is a bit of our history.

While many people take the time to enjoy the dancing, I like wandering around and exploring the grounds.

Los Angeles Air RaidPlane

A rare shot on this blog of my Little Man.  I normally don’t like showing him here, but I thought this photo was framed so nicely.  I bet some would be surprised to find I have a son, given I don’t post pictures often.  Protective mama bear in action.

Fort MacArthur

Of course, watching a gorgeous Los Angeles sunset from a beautiful vantage point isn’t too bad.

Fort MacArthur

Los Angeles Air Raid

After the sun sets, the anticipation begins building.  You know the sirens are coming, but when?

Cait was giving me the low down on what to expect.  And then it was time!  Sirens blared, guns fired and fireworks shot through the sky.
Los Angeles Air Raid
Los Angeles Air Raid
Los Angeles Air Raid

And before you know it, it is over!  Well, it lasted about 15 minutes, but it seemed like it was over in no time.  Now I’m already planning for next year.  And the date has been posted.  Mark your calendars for February 15, 2014.  See you then!


9 comments so far.

9 responses to “THE GREAT LOS ANGELES AIR RAID OF 1942 … IN 2013”

  1. Lady, you looked top to toe perfect! Thanks for sharing these images. I was sad to miss this event, but now I feel like I was there!

  2. You truly look incredibly, dear Patrica Lynn. There is such a striking elegance and timeless, becoming beauty to your whole ensemble. It was the perfect choice for this event, and most definitely one of my favourite outfits you've ever shared with us.

    ♥ Jessica

  3. Laurence says:

    Oh, I love your pictures!!! Those sunset ones are just gorgeous!
    Your outfit is really nice!
    I have never gone to vintage air show, but really would like to!

  4. Mr. Tiny says:

    I love the Air Raid and am sad to have missed it this year. You captured some truly beautiful photographs, so I don't feel like I missed out on everything. THANKS!!!

  5. Anonymous says:

    You are so Beautiful1

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