During WW2 Americans received their war news from short movie clips when they went to the theater, from radio and from print media such as Life Magazine.
Life Magazine not only brought the war home to civilians via news stories but also encouraged public support for the war effort through the advertisers.
The below ad appeared in the November 1, 1943 issue of Life. The advertiser is the Willard Battery Company, a subsidiary of The Electric Storage Battery Company.
Willard is still in business today, owned by a South African Company.
During WW2 Willard switched production from automobile batteries to war production. In this particular ad Willard advertises the fact their batteries are used in American tanks.
The advertisement features the most common American tank of all-the M4 Sherman of which about 50,000 were built for use in the American Army, Canadian Army, British Army and even the Soviet Army due to Lend-Lease aid.
The ad is typical as it refers to the sacrifices our boys are making in fighting the war. The ad appeals to that sacrifice by encouraging the reader to buy more war stamps and war bonds so that our boys have the equipment they need to keep on fighting.
WW2 was the last of our wars that involved everyone. The nation was mobilized with one goal-to win the war as soon as possible. Since the Korean War the nation as a whole has not been involved. To be sure, if your family had\has a member in the military who are involved so are you, but for many Americans conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq are remote and as a result none of the sacrifice so prevalent in WW2 is made upon most of us.