Blog – M. Ruth Myers

Radio Brought the Fastest News in World War II

(Writer Rosi Mackey, long-time fan of the Maggie Sullivan mysteries, provided this wonderful look at how people in Ohio, and other parts of America, got their news during World War II. Thanks for sharing, Rosi!) by Rosi Mackey Sipping my name-brand triple decaf espresso, I watched a mother trying to hustle her five-year old twins […]

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Working Women and Latchkey Kids in WWII America

by M. Ruth Myers Mothers working in factories to support America’s war effort while their children roamed the streets at night provides a minor plot thread and a stroke of historical color in Dames Fight Harder, the sixth Maggie Sullivan mystery. It’s grounded firmly in the reality of 1940s Dayton, Ohio, where the detective series […]

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How America’s Pledge of Allegiance Differed in World War II

The Pledge of Allegiance we recite today is different than the one recited by the characters who populate the Maggie Sullivan mysteries, and by America’s real-life citizens throughout the 1940s. Do you know how it differs? It’s a matter of only two words. Those words, and the change, were drilled into my brain because of […]

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From Dead Horses to a Recap Tire Monopoly: Part 2

Stories of ordinary families are what bring history to life. In this second of two guest posts, retired Dayton, Ohio, police sergeant Stephen C. Grismer tells how his family’s automobile business survived World War II when cars — and tires — were rationed. Steve serves as secretary-treasurer of the Dayton Police Historical Foundation. He has […]

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From Chairs & Dead Horses to a Recap Tire Monopoly

History comes to life through individual stories. This two-part guest post by retired Dayton police sergeant Stephen C. Grismer gives a wonderful view of how one family’s business changed and adapted in the course of more than a century, reflecting life in the community around it. Steve serves as secretary-treasurer of the Dayton Police History […]

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America’s WWII Blackout Cars

by M. Ruth Myers While working on my current Maggie Sullivan mystery, I wanted to make sure when World War II blackouts went into effect in the United States, especially in Dayton, Ohio, where the series takes place. After all, private eyes wouldn’t be private eyes if they didn’t do a great deal of creeping […]

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Music Helps Ohio City Face First Christmas of WWII

Imagine how hard it must have been for American families and communities to maintain any semblance of Christmas spirit in 1941. The Dec. 7 attack on Pearl Harbor had just thrust the previously divided country into World War II. Yet in Dayton, Ohio, two civic events lifted spirits as the city push determinedly on in […]

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FDR, James M. Cox both influenced 1940s Dayton, Ohio

By M. Ruth Myers Although the Maggie Sullivan mysteries are set in the 1940s, two powerful men often mentioned in them — FDR and newspaperman James M. Cox — had been close acquaintances for more than twenty years. Indeed, they formed the Democratic presidential ticket in 1920. “Governor Cox” as he was referred to in […]

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