partners exhibit heading

Women Serving the Military
Women Serving the Military





Six private organizations formed the United Service Organizations (USO) to provide recreation for military personnel while on leave, but the most enduring image is of the USO Camp Shows. The YMCA, YWCA, National Catholic Community Service, the National Jewish Welfare Board, the Traveler’s Aid Association, and the Salvation Army formed the USO in 1941 to pool their resources.  Women served as volunteers at over 3000 locations in the United States.

Mary O’Neill of Washington, D.C., an accordion player for the USO Volunteer Camp Shows, received the certificate of appreciation below on the left for her contribution to the war effort. Below, right is Evelyn Long's USO Certificate of Appreciation.

USO Certificate of Appreciation
USO Certificate of Appreciation

Mrs. Alfred Scott serves punch to a soldier,
Phyllis Wheatley YWCA USO, July 1943.





USO worker serves punch to a soldier at the YWCA, July 1943

The postcard below depicts volunteer workers serving refreshments to servicemen and women, in the canteen in the North Platte, Nebraska, Union Pacific Railroad station.
Postcard of volunteers serving refreshments in a canteen in Nebraska


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 Photo Credits (L to R): #1-2: The Women's Memorial, #3: USO, #4: Women's Memorial

(c) Copyright National Women's History Museum 2007