The Postmaster general of the United States, Fred Shuppe, sent out a notice August 30, 1943, to postmasters throughout the country. The notice mentioned that the country needed to raise $15 billion to aid the war effort and that $5 billion of that would need to come from individuals. To this effort every man, woman, and child would need to buy an extra bond in September. This was followed by other letters particularly addressing the local postmaster to urge his employees to enroll 100%. The first meeting of a committee formed to implement the drive was September 17, 1943. Postal workers had already started to canvas their routes to sell war bonds and stamps. By September 16 postmen had raised $8700. September 18 the Spiggot Falls Hayshakers (musical group) played at a rally on the steps of the Lawrence Post Office while the postal workers worked the crowd selling bonds. Appearances were made at the Breen School and the Polish National Church. Bedsides the Postal Workers, the Ayer Mill, Cardillo chapter Italian-American World War Vets of the US, the YMHA, St. Francis Church, and the Polish-American unit helped raise money. At the Block Party and Bond Drive September 21 Victor Mature, on leave from the Coast Guard appeared. Admission was 25c in an area on Common Street west of Broadway. Music was provided by Roland Russell’s Ramblers. The Mistress of Ceremonies was Miss Rita Conroy. Nine vaudeville acts were offered by two local nightclubs. A group of French soldiers also entertained the crowd.
Charles A. Cronin was born to Mr. and Mrs. John H. Cronin, a well known druggist, in Lawrence,Mass. September 22, 1890. He graduated fromLawrence High School in 1910. After high school he attended the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Charles A. Cronin enlisted in the US Army in 1917 after American entered the war. He later would serve in the new US Air Service as a pilot inFrance. He was appointed a Second Lieutenant by the French War Ministry (French Flying Corps). His interest in aviation continued throughout his life and probably led to his interest in Airmail Week and the LawrenceMunicipalAirport. Just before he died he was named a member of the Municipal Airport Commission. Before he joined the US Postal Service he was associated with Jersey Ice Cream. Cronin was appointed acting Postmaster June 22, 1933. He later received a four year appointment from President Roosevelt and was reappointed in 1938. He was finally appointed postmaster in 1944. His responsibilities covered Lawrence,Methuen andNorth Andover. He was a member of the National Association of Postmasters, American Legion Post 15, and Veterans of Foreign Wars,Lawrencepost 1549. He died November 18, 1947. He married Gertrude P. Walsh and had two children, Charles A., Jr. and Virginia Kane.
The Library was given access by the family to three scrapbooks that were among Mr. Cronin’s effects. One covers his experiences in the First World War; the second documents Airmail week in Lawrence (1938); and the last one pertains to the Third War Bond Drive (1943).