Sunday, February 20, 2011

Homeland Security, c. 1942

THE SECOND WORLD WAR, and the years leading up to it, was a time not unlike ours today. Just as our government today does it’s best to assure our safety from terrorists, the U.S. government 75 years ago was ever vigilant against Communist and German spies, or terrorist infiltrators trying to weasel their way into defense related businesses. So, they created these “100% foolproof” ID badges, for surely anyone with a camera, pair of scissors and glue could not have faked one of these babies. And, I am not going to even mention the overwhelming pride and individuality an employee would feel wearing one. ;-)

Actually, you can still find these on eBay and at flea markets and estate sales, but once they make it to those little locked cases you see at the antique stores, you can bet they are going to be pretty pricey. My friend Mark Michaelson, author of the book Least Wanted, has a fabulous photostream on Flickr with tons of vernacular photos—mugshots, ID badges, and other cool pics, so just click here to see it. These badges make a great, very visual and affordable collection if you want to start looking for them.

Mark’s book, Least Wanted, is available on Amazon. Check it out!


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Douglas said...

these are really wonderful old ID tags. Always welcome.
doug,,,,los angeles

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