Marriage is an important part of everyone’s life; you join hands with your significant other to enter holy matrimony and vow to spend the rest of your lives happily together. So, everyone wants to have a special day where they celebrate their love, which is why there are around 5,000 weddings reported each day only in the United States.
However, there was a year in the history of the USA when around 1.8 million weddings took place, and that was in 1942. Now, 1.8 million weddings in a year don’t sound like a lot of weddings, given that 2.3 million people get married every year. Back in the 1940s, weddings weren’t easy, and the USA wasn’t as populated as it is today, so for 1.8 million weddings to take place in 1942, it is kind of a big deal.
The Year 1942
Approximately 80 years ago, there was a sudden realization that everyone should get married, and so many people headed to their preferred destination and tied the knot. While this topic can be casually approached and researched as to why this phenomenon took place, wouldn’t it be better to hear it from someone present at the time? Well, yes. Mildred Summergrad is 98 years old, whose family moved to the US in the early 1920s, and Summergrad grew up in the Bronx, New York.
From The Eyes Of Millie
Mildred Summergrad explained her living situation back in the 1940s and how she had fallen in love with one of her classmates, Leo, who went on to be Millie’s husband. She also shed light on the courtship situation back in the day and how there were no such things as dates, but the two would often hang out in the park and remained a couple throughout college. In 1942, the US Senate announced the war resolution, which made Leo eligible to be drafted at the young age of 19.
Leo signed up to be drafted on 14th December 1942, which was meant to give them more time with each other, but as the war waged on, everything became uncertain except for the love that they had for each other. So, the two concluded that they were ready to tie the knot at the beginning of Christmas week. Surprisingly, no one objected to the wedding of two youngsters who have no money and are still studying, but for Millie and Leo, it was all about being married and together.
The Summergrads were then joined by a million more people who exchanged vows, and how weddings became a national obsession. Many people knew that they were either going to come back or die in war, which is why many young people decided to marry their significant others and find some solace in knowing that they could spend some time with their spouse before they were drafted and sent to war.
Goes to show that Millie and Leo were one of the 1.8 million people who got married in 1942 in the face of a raging war and an uncertain future.