Section One

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Victory Begins at Home
Admiral William F. Halsey Jr.
Unidentified artist for Industrial Incentive Division, Navy Department,  c. 1940

Although World War II posters frequently depicted an average soldier, worker, or housewife, some featured renowned personalities like Fleet Admiral William F. Halsey, whose famous motto, “Hit hard! Hit fast! Hit often!” seemed to embody his commanding persona. This poster captures the gusto of “Bull” Halsey, who was the first to lead U.S. counterstrikes against Japan and won victories in the Solomon Islands, the Philippines, Okinawa, and other areas in the South Pacific. Leaning forward, Halsey squints into the distance with binoculars in hand as though he is in the midst of attacking his enemy. 

Printed in the millions for display in U.S. factories, industrial incentive posters such as these conflated battle lines with production lines, in this case seeming to unite them under Halsey’s command. Urging industrial workers to join the fight, the poster argues that what they are really “producing” is victory at sea.