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Sears, Roebuck and Company
Fall and Winter
These were the war years. Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941, America had quickly changed to a war economy. Many things were no longer available because the materials needed to manufacture them were needed for the war effort. The factories that used to make many items were converted to manufacture items needed by the military. For example, automobiles, trucks, boats, electric appliances and hundreds of other items were not being manufactured in the United States when this catalog was issued.
Wartime production of many items that were still being made had been greatly diminished, and those available to the public were rationed. To buy tires and inner-tubes for existing vehicles a person had to apply for permission to buy, get approval, then provide the appropriate ration coupons to the retailers...even if ordered by mail. This practice also applied to many items that contained raw materials that otherwise might have been used to produce military items.
To understand the scarcity of goods during this period, be sure to read the itemized list of items that Sears indicated were unavailable when this particular catalog was published. It is the second picture below.
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