In the chaos of the last week, I missed that May 8, 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of VE Day or Victory in Europe Day. The day commemorated the victory of Allied forces over the fascist governments of Germany and Italy on May 8, 1945. Celebrations marked the occasion across the world and in Pennsylvania.
In Hazleton, many companies and stores ran special advertisements in the local newspapers celebrating the victory and honoring those who served in the Second World War’s European Theater.
One of the ads stuck out for its simplicity and its vivid imagery.
This advertisement was purchased by Deisroth’s Department Store on Broad and Laurel in Hazleton. The final words of Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 Gettysburg Address are superimposed over an illustration of a burning copy of Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf.
The ad is simple. The imagery is powerful. The message remains today, 75 years later, as moving as the day it appeared on Coal Region news stands.
Featured Image: Advertisement in the Hazleton Standard-Speaker, May 9, 1945