Against the odds, Detroit defied reality to help win World War II.

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Ford’s Willow Run Factory

By Samantha L. Quigley

They said it couldn’t be done. Doubters chided Henry Ford for declaring that his Willow Run Bomber Plant could turn out a B-24 Liberator heavy bomber every hour. Read more

Congresswoman Jeannette Rankin cast the only vote against declaring war on Japan the day after the Pearl Harbor Attack.

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Against the Odds: Jeanette Rankin

By Martin K.A. Morgan

An Associated Press report described “a chorus of hisses and boos” that echoed through the chamber when the Congresswoman from Montana cast her vote. Read more

German airborne troops finally secured the island Crete following a pitched battle for Maelem airfield.

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ANZACs at Maleme

By David H. Lippman

“Maleme. 20th May, 1941. Usual Mediterranean summer day. Cloudless sky, no wind, extreme visibility; e.g., details on mountains 20 miles to the southeast easily discernible.” Read more

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Is London Burning?

By David Alan Johnson

The bombers seemed to arrive overhead with much less warning than on any past air raid. Olive Bayliss, who lived with her family over at London Wall, in London’s City District, was certain that the Luftwaffe came in faster than usual tonight, catching everyone by surprise. Read more

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Demise of the Japanese Navy

By Christopher Miskimon

The Japanese superbattleship Musashi was steaming east along with a fleet of other battleships, cruisers, and destroyers on their way toward what was expected to be a climactic battle at Leyte Gulf. Read more

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Bombing Buchenwald

By Flint Whitlock

In early 1945, the 50,000 starved and brutalized prisoners incarcerated at KL Buchenwald—the infamous concentration camp located atop a hill known as the Ettersberg, just to the northwest of Germany’s cultural capital of Weimar—were growing desperate. Read more