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During World War II, the saying "Kilroy Was Here!" began to appear as graffiti at home and wherever the American military traveled abroad. Eventually the saying, and the cartoon character that often accompanied it, came to represent America's presence throughout the world. Today, it remains a whimsical symbol of the momentous achievements of an entire generation of Americans during the 20th century's darkest hour.

As we enter the year 2000, the 1940s remain one of the most pivotal decades of the 20th century. The Ohio Historical Society brings that era to life in Kilroy Was Here!: The 1940s Revisited, opening January 2005, at the Youngstown Historical Center of Industry and Labor. The exhibit allows visitors to reflect on the profound changes that occurred in American culture--and on the great personal sacrifices Ohioans and all Americans made--as a result of our involvement in WWII. The multidimensional exhibit also looks at lighter side of American life in the 1940s including music, sports, movies, and other aspects of the era's popular culture.

Kilroy Was Here! features life-sized family scenes from before, during and after WWII, complemented by videotaped recollections of Ohioans who lived during the era. The songs of decade accompany an in-depth 1940s timeline that vividly portrays the changing times with a large collection of objects and graphics. Visitors are invited to relax in an interactive period living room, where they can play games, try on '40s-style clothing and read magazines and newspapers from the period. At interactive kiosks nearby, they can also test their knowledge of news, sports and popular tunes of the day. Special evening events, lectures and a monthly series of family programming further enlivens this trip back in time.

Who Was Kilroy?

Kilroy graffitiDuring World War II, the saying "Kilroy Was Here!" began to appear as graffiti at home and wherever the American military traveled abroad. Eventually the saying, and the cartoon character that often accompanied it, came to represent America's worldwide presence. Today. it remains a whimsical symbol of the momentous achievements made by an entire generation of Americans during the 20th century's darkest hour.

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Last modified, Tuesday, 26-Jul-2005 12:07:01 Eastern Daylight Time