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60 votes
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What do the phone number suffixes J, M, R, W in 1940 New York phone book mean?

You are correct that these are party lines. The letters represent an additional digit dialed after the others in cases where automatic operations was implemented. This article goes into great depth ...
Brian Z's user avatar
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30 votes
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Why did the Japanese attack the Aleutians at the same time as Midway?

The traditional historical narrative has been that the Aleutian attack, which happened a day earlier, was intended as a diversionary attack, hoping to spread American forces thinner, and thus make the ...
T.E.D.'s user avatar
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28 votes
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Was FDR right that a garden hose was really $15 in 1940 (c.a. $300 today)?

I couldn't find one from 1940, but here's a snippet from a 1950 ad for a "Koroseal garden hose"(commercial site link). They were offering a 75-foot hose for $13.20, which is certainly in the ...
T.E.D.'s user avatar
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28 votes

Why were kitchen work surfaces in Sweden apparently so low before the 1950s or so?

Why were apparently kitchens so low in Sweden before the 1950s or so? This may be the same thing everywhere else as well. It's just that I have only heard it in Swedish context. Before the ...
Mark Johnson's user avatar
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27 votes

Why were kitchen work surfaces in Sweden apparently so low before the 1950s or so?

Three thoughts: I doubt that people somehow suddenly got significantly taller in Sweden in the first half of the 20th century. As a comment already points out, people did get substantially taller. ...
cbeleites unhappy with SX's user avatar
16 votes
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How did German racial laws affect people who weren't Jewish but one of their parents wasn't German?

How German racial laws affected people who weren't Jewish but one of their parent's wasn't German? ... born to a British father and a German mother ... So my question is that what was the protocol ...
Mark Johnson's user avatar
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13 votes
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How long did men have to serve in the US army until they were promoted to sergeants during WW2?

Your question is premised on some incorrect assumptions: Casualties were not that high. The U.S. Army enlisted over 11 million men and suffered less than 500,000 killed and MIA, only a bit more ...
Pieter Geerkens's user avatar
13 votes
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How serious was the initiative to create "One World Airline"?

It seems the idea of a Single World Airline was proposed at the 1944 Chicago Conference by Australia and New Zealand. An excerpt from a 2006 Master's thesis by Joanna Mastalerek, titled The Future of ...
sempaiscuba's user avatar
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12 votes

What do the phone number suffixes J, M, R, W in 1940 New York phone book mean?

Can't talk about New York (as I'm in Australia), but when I was a kid the Brisbane phone numbers had a one two digit alpha prefix, then a 4 digit number - eg my grandparents were J 2871, and my aunt ...
Chester's user avatar
  • 121
11 votes

Why did the Japanese attack the Aleutians at the same time as Midway?

With 20/20 hindsight you can win just about any battle. Which is what we do here in this question. Military History Visualized has a good explanation. Japanese operations were usually quite ...
Jos's user avatar
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10 votes
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Where can I find more information about destruction of a castle in Merlas, France?

The chateau at Saint-Sixte was attacked by the Germans because it was being used by a local French resistance (Maquis) group as a hideout and base of operations in the Isere department of the region ...
Lars Bosteen's user avatar
9 votes

What percentage of people were acquitted in "Stalin's trials"

What were "Stalin's trials"? If you want to limit the discussion to the few "show trials", like Шахтинское дело or "Московские процессы" (1, 2, 3), you can compute that ...
sds's user avatar
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7 votes

What relation do the early sexual experiences of Lolita and her classmates bear to the real experience of children in New England in 1947?

When I saw this question I immediately went to look at Sexual Behavior in the Human Female, the first study of its kind. It was published by Alfred Kinsey and colleagues in 1953, based on data ...
Brian Z's user avatar
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7 votes
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When did blackouts occur in Cairo during WW2?

We can indeed nail down a date for this: CAIRO LIGHTS GO UP FIRST CAPITAL TO END BLACK-OUT By an order of the Military Governor, published last night, the black-out in Cairo ends to-day, and full ...
Andrew is gone's user avatar
6 votes

Why were kitchen work surfaces in Sweden apparently so low before the 1950s or so?

The discovery that people work best at a waist-high workspace was one of the discoveries of efficiency experts working in factories in the late 19th century. It was brought to the kitchen by Christine ...
Mary's user avatar
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6 votes
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Were prisons in Maine mixed race in 1947?

Yes. At least one prison in Maine counted both white and Black prisoners among its population during the 1940-1950 time period. In the 1950 census of Knox County, Maine, enumeration district 7-36 ...
shoover's user avatar
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6 votes
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Why were the Yellow River dyke repairs delayed?

The wiki articles' focus on the Communist/Nationalist dispute create an impression that repairs were delayed due to political disagreements. However, while certainly a factor, the most significant ...
Semaphore's user avatar
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6 votes
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Who coined the term "Golden Age" in reference to musical theatre?

The earliest use of Golden Age with reference to musical theatre in general which I've been able to find is in this May 3rd 1977 New York Times review by Clive Barnes of a revival of The King and I ...
Lars Bosteen's user avatar
6 votes

Date this Jubilee Day photo

The many cues to observe: Picture quality Although it might be even higher resolution and a better scan: depth of field, focus, shadows etc point to an overall technology that's more late than ...
6 votes
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Did international laws on wars of conquest change in 1945?

The Nuremburg Principles declared such wars a crime against peace. The crimes hereinafter set out are punishable as crimes under international law: (a) Crimes against peace: (i) Planning, ...
Semaphore's user avatar
  • 97.5k
4 votes

What relation do the early sexual experiences of Lolita and her classmates bear to the real experience of children in New England in 1947?

Lolita is a novel by a European literary author whose purpose is to convey aesthetic and critical perspectives on the process of reading and writing itself. New England, Americana, and paedophilia ...
Samuel Russell's user avatar
4 votes

Did it matter that the Red Army clung on to Stalingrad's West bank in 1942?

Yes. Even though I agree with both @Tom and @Kunikov's answers, I feel that there's also another element. Let's pretend Uranus, the encirclement phase, never happened at all. Even then the ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
3 votes

How much oil was Germany able to secure after invasion of France?

Hayward (1995) says that the amount of oil products captured in the 1940 campaigns overall was something greater than the 12 million barrels consumed by them, including "250,000 tons of aviation ...
Brian Z's user avatar
  • 20.9k
3 votes

Who really attacked first in the 1948 Israeli Palestinian war?

As the comments say you should separate Arab countries from local Palestinians. We also need to decide on a date, since again like the comments mention a conflict existed between Jews and local ...
Rsf's user avatar
  • 265
2 votes

Why did the Japanese attack the Aleutians at the same time as Midway?

I think each answer so far has hit on very important points: complexity of Japanese planning, diversionary tactics, and Army-Navy rivalry. One thing I would like to point out, however, is why Midway ...
Adam391's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes

Date this Jubilee Day photo

It was taken about 1970, if you believe The Pram Museum, since the baby stroller in the right foreground is a Columbia Tuk-A-Way (USA manufacturer). Although, here's an ad for the same stroller ...
herb guy's user avatar
  • 121
2 votes

Age of majority in Washington state in 1945?

It seems that the legal "age of majority" in Washington state was 21 from 1854 until 1971, when it was amended by House Bill No. 309 and became 18. There are different definitions of the term "age of ...
sempaiscuba's user avatar
  • 77.3k
1 vote

Which operation came last in World War 2?

The Soviets and the Japanese were fighting in the Kuril Islands as late as 4 September 1945. For a somewhat sparse description, that at least has some dates, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
R Leonard's user avatar
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