“She wasn’t a horse, she was a Marine”
PUBLISHED: 15:59 EST, 30 April 2013 | UPDATED: 16:55 EST, 30 April 2013
Kevin Burg, a graphic artist from New York, discovered the 75-year-old Snow White stationary-printed letter which belonged to his grandmother, Mary Ford, shortly after she passed away.
The letter, posted on Flickr, informed Ford that ‘women do not do any of the creative work in connection with preparing the cartoons for the screen, as that work is performed entirely by young men.’
‘Their job was to make what the men did look good,’ wrote Vanity Fair’s Patricia Zohn.
However, the letter addressed to Ford, notably signed by a woman, also named Mary, even discouraged her from leaving her Arkansas home to pursue an Inker and Painter career at the Hollywood-based studio.
‘There are really very few openings in comparison with the number of girls who apply,’ the letter states.
‘Preparing the cartoons for the screen… is performed entirely by young men’
One 88-yeer-old grandmother, who had her granddaughter comment on the Walt Disney rejection letter via Jezebel, explained: ‘”Tut tut tut..” That was the usual response to young ladies applying to careers which could possibly lead them astray.
‘There was a graphics class in my high school that discouraged girls from taking it…”no future,” it was told to applicants. I wanted to try and be interviewed for a job for Disney. [But] my parents thought a young girl going down to a city all alone, no living accommodations etc. was not a wise idea.’
Reidun Medby, then 20, was one Ink and Painter who heard that Walt Disney Productions was ‘thumbs down on girl animators,’ because ‘each time [a woman is] beginning to get good they’ve quit to get married or something,’ as told to Vanity Fair via a letter Medby wrote to her boyfriend in 1937.
‘There was much more to being an inker than merely shoving a pen around,’ Medby added, of the importance of a steady hand. ‘I didn’t bowl, smoke, or drink. We were worried that our hands would shake.’
At an average of eight to ten cels per hour, 100 girls working from 4.30am every morning with two 15-minute breaks, completed less than one minute of screen time per day.
At the time, Ink and Painters earned $18 per week, while top animators made $300.
But by 1940, the same year Mary Blair would join Disney to become one of the most influential figures in American animation, night training for animators had been reinstated to well-established Ink and Painters.
Blair, who attended the renowned Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles, and married animation artist, Lee Everett Blair in 1934, later joined her husband at Walt Disney in 1940 to color-style Dumbo, and went on to style Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland and finally, Peter Pan.
It wasn’t until 1944, largely because of men who left their Disney posts after Pearl Harbor, that the first Ink and Painter, Reidun Medby, was promoted to an ‘assistant animator’ position.
The aircraft wreckage which was found on a glacier near Anchorage earlier this month is believed to be a plane which went missing in the 1950s with more than 50 people on board, military officials said on Wednesday. Possible human remains have been recovered.
Captain Jamie Dobson, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Joint Prisoners Of War/Missing In Action Accounting Command (JPAC) at the U.S. Department of Defense, said some evidence at the wreckage site is directly linked to a C-124 Globemaster aircraft which disappeared in the region in November 1952.
“Some of the evidence at the wreckage site has been positively correlated to the United States Air Force C-124 Globemaster that crashed in 1952,” Dobson said. “We are still not eliminating other possibilities but we do know at this point that some of the evidence that we are looking at is directly connected to that flight.”
The cargo plane, which was the largest in use by the U.S. Air Force in 1952, went missing on a flight from McChord Air Force Base in Tacoma, Washington, to Elmendorf Air Force Base near Anchorage. Last contact with the plane came as it flew through dense fog over Middleton Island in the Gulf of Alaska, about 160 miles (257 kilometers) southeast of Anchorage.
Based on the location of the incident, it is worth noting that the C-124 was not originally equipped with deicing equipment.
The aircraft was carrying 41 passengers and 11 crew members, including pilot Captain Kenneth J. Duval, 37, of Vallejo, California, and co-pilot Captain Alger M. Cheney, 32, of Lubeck, Maine. The plane’s wreckage was found days later on Mount Gannett with no signs of survivors, but weather made a recovery operation impossible. The aircraft was abandoned and later searches failed to locate the wreckage.
Now nearly 60 years later, the wreckage was discovered on June 10 by the crew of an Alaskan Army National Guard helicopter when it was flying low over an area near Knik, a glacier on the northern end of the Chugach Mountains and about 40 miles (64 kilometers) northeast of Anchorage. The helicopter was on a routine training mission when it discovered the wreckage.
After an additional search-and-rescue mission by Joint Task Force-Alaska and the Alaska National Guard, military officials determined the aircraft was an old military plane. But officials were unable to identify the plane, resulting in the deployment of a specialized investigative team from JPAC.
Dobson said the team collected evidence at the site, including life-support equipment, personal effects, and possible skeletal remains. “We’ve recovered as much evidence from the site as we were able to and needed to to go forward with an identification,” she said. “There is a possibility that further evidence could surface.”
Officials have described the wreckage site as long and linear. “It was thousands of feet. Possibly 2,000 feet (609 meters) long and a couple of hundred feet (meters) wide,” Dobson said.
Over the last decades, dozens of military planes have gone missing in the area of Knik Glacier. “The whole history is riddled with searches for planes that never came home,” Alaska aviation historian Ted Spencer told the Anchorage Daily News earlier this month. “Planes of all types, and they started disappearing when Alaska became an aviation-oriented place. It’s so vast.”
Military personnel examine a debris field on Knik Glacier, about 40 miles northeast of Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo by US Army)
Additional reporting by Matt Molnar
Japanese Americans and the Military Intelligence Service in WWII
I’ve enjoyed learning about the family history of one of faithful Twitter followers @kaname650 Over the last few months he has shared information about his Japanese-American parents which were incarcerated at two different Japanese-American Internment camps during World War II. His mother was at Heart Mountain in Wyoming and his father at Tule Lake in California.
Last month his father’s best friend, Shigeto ‘Dick’ Ishida (left), passed away at the age of 94. While @kaname650’s father and friends were interned, Dick served as a translator for the Military Intelligence Service during World War II. Like @kaname650’s father, Ishida was a “kibei”, born in the US and sent to Japan for education. His translation efforts for the U.S. during World War II earned him a Congressional Gold Medal in 2012, along with thousands of other Nisei (second-generation Japanese Americans) that served in the Military Intelligence Service (MIS).
Click below to learn more about their efforts:
Japanese-American WWII vets honored by Congress (I highly encourage you to watch the brief video)
Special thanks to @AngryHistory for the following link:
I clicked the link to check out all of Lawrence’s aerial photographs at the Library of Congress and there is a search feature available.
Check it out and see what you can find!
“This weekend and through July 7, between 200,000 and 300,000 visitors — more than the number of combatants — will flock to the town and fields of Gettysburg National Military Park to mark the 150th anniversary of the three-day clash, which cost an incredible 51,000 casualties.”