"Give War Bonds. The Present with a Future." Vintage WWII U.S. Treasury Poster, 1943

Presented is a vintage WWII War Bonds poster by artist Don Snider. The poster was issued by the U.S. Treasury and printed in 1943 as part of the Third War Loan Drive. The poster depicts a festive Christmas tree with War Bonds and cones of War Savings Stamps in lieu of ornaments. Wrapped presents lay below the tree; a prominent one has War Saving Stamps tucked into its holiday bow. The poster text reads, “Give War Bonds,” in big red block letters at top left and continues, “The Present with a FUTURE,” in green and red block letters at the bottom. The poster encouraged Americans to support the war effort by buying and gifting War Bonds in place of holiday presents, linking the success of the war loan drives to the country’s future freedom. 

Defense Bonds first went on the market on May 1, 1941, and they were renamed War Bonds after the US entered the war in December 1941. Bonds were available in denominations of $25 through $1,000, designed to be affordable for every household. Eight War Loan Drives were conducted in the US from 1942 to 1945. Each was meant to raise an additional $9-$15 billion. Towns received quotas, with the aim of promoting competition between towns. Volunteers went door-to-door, pleading for bond sales and rewarding purchasers with stickers to display on their window or door.

The drives were conducted on the following dates: First War Loan Drive: Nov. 30 to Dec. 23, 1942; Second War Loan Drive: Apr. 12 to May 1, 1943; Third War Loan Drive: Sep. 9 to Oct. 1, 1943; Fourth War Loan Drive: Jan. 18 to Feb. 15, 1944; Fifth War Loan Drive: June 12 to July 8, 1944; Sixth War Loan Drive: Nov. 20 to Dec. 16, 1944; Seventh War Loan Drive: May 14 to June 30, 1945; Victory Loan Drive: Oct. 29 to Dec. 8, 1945.

By the end of the war, 85 million Americans (out of a population of 131 million) had purchased $185.7 billion dollars of bonds – over $2,000 per person, at a time when the average income was $2,000 per year. The patriotism and personal sacrifice of the average citizen played a significant part in the Allied war effort.

CONDITION: 

Good condition overall. Original color lithograph. Very bright and colorful poster, with strong colors. Some toning and chipping to outer paper margins. Centerfold present. Small tears at bottom, which have since been stabilized and repaired. Printed "U.S. Government Printing Office: 1943- O- 553896" at bottom left margin, "Official U.S. Treasury Poster" at bottom center margin and  "WFD 856-B" at bottom right margin. Poster Dimensions: 40" H x 28 1/2" W. 

The poster has been framed according to archival standards in a custom-built frame with acid-free mats and backing and UV Conservation Clear glass.




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