New Mexico April 08, 2017
12 Very Rare Photos Taken During WWII In New Mexico
World War II is one of the most studied times in history, but what was life in New Mexico like during those years? Thanks to Yale’s collection of images captured between 1939 to 1945, we can glimpse the past and get an idea of what aspects of life were – and weren’t – affected by World War II.
1. The American Legion veterans' organization formed after World War I. It was instrumental in creating the "GI Bill" during 1944. This image of the American Legion Hall in Clayton was taken in 1941.
2. A woman named Mary Mutz writing to her boyfriend who was serving in the U.S. Army. She was back home on a ranch in the Moreno Valley.
3. A dance held in Penasco in 1943.
4. Servicemen who were home on furlough attended the dance.
5. Father Smith using his parish house broadcasting station in Questa to announce a news release in Spanish during 1943.
6. AT-11 bombers dropping training bombs at an advanced flying school located in Carlsbad.
7. United States Army Railroad Battalion soldiers in Clovis learning welding skills in 1943.
8. This is what the town of Hobbs looked like in 1942. Towns like Hobbs...
9. ... And Truchas (in 1943) might appear untouched by war.
10. However, advertisements for war bonds and other war-themed flyers on bulletin boards (like these ones in the general store in Trampas) suggest that the effects of global events were felt even in rural communities.
11. This image of the 1945 Trinity explosion is one many of us are familiar with, so it's not rare. However, it does document the New Mexico-based Manhattan Project, which changed the course of World War II - and the world - forever.
12. This photo was actually taken just after the war, in September 1945. J. Robert Oppenheimer and General Leslie R. Groves revisited the Trinity Test site. They are standing next to what's left of one of the bases belonging to the test tower for the atomic bomb.
Do you or your family members have any stories about life in New Mexico during World War II? We’d love to hear about them on the
Only In New Mexico Facebook page.
You may also be interested to see images showing
life here during the Great Depression.