Posts Tagged ‘Civil Defense’

Greetings, friends! Today we’ll continue with our Rural Civil Defense film series. In today’s (admittedly pretty boring) segment, we’ll get to hear our puppet farmer friend liken the risk of nuclear annihilation to that of an “Indian” attack in olden times. He explains that every family needed to have a plan for such things, just like families of the present (1965) should have a plan for nuclear attacks.

I wish puppet farmer had more wisdom to impart in this section of film, but alas, no.

Fingers crossed for the next chunk!





The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (yep, that one) has an FAQ page for nuclear blasts. Now. In 2014. This seems…misplaced? I mean, I can see how radiation sickness could fall under the CDC’s umbrella, but this page answers questions like, “Would an airplane crash in a nuclear power plant have the same effect as a nuclear blast?” (Spoiler Alert: No.) as well as radiation sickness (ARS for those in the know)-specific questions.

Regardless of the odd placement, the page provides a surprisingly easy-to-understand, thorough introduction to nuclear blasts and aftermath, and also answers some pretty good questions to boot.

Take a look!


The New Orleans Civil Defense Center was designed to function as a command center during man-made (nuclear) and natural disasters. The command center was put to use for the second purpose during 1965’s Hurricane Betsy. This film shows the command center in action, complete with the mayor descending the stairs into the shelter and the call center (room?) full of (mostly) ladies manning the phone lines helping with such personal emergencies as a baby being born during the hurricane.

To see the New Orleans-specific part of the video, start at ~10:44. Though honestly the film is great throughout providing great insight into one of the nastiest hurricanes and the early Sixties in general. There’s even footage of the Gemini V astronauts, whose mission was shortened by an orbit due to the hurricane.

Enjoy this peak into Hurricane Betsy and the New Orleans Civil Defense Shelter in its prime.


Let’s check in with our puppet farmer friend!

In today’s installment, the farmer springs from his bed…fully clothed! Did you know farmers are at the ready for cow milking and combine driving and nuclear bombs at the drop of a hat?! Now you do.

From this film I learned, mo’ shielding, mo’ better. I love that the announcer suggests using fertilizer bags for shielding, which yes they’re big and heavy, and I suppose do block radiation, but…what if you’re inside the blast zone? I mean, fertilizer is super duper explosive. Not a good plan.


Surviving Fallout – Rural Civil Defense – 1965 – Part 2/10

It’s time for another visit with our puppet farmer friend!

Today we get to watch as he hastily prepares for a nuclear attack after the alert siren “whales.”

Two things:

1) I really don’t think the puppet farmer would have made it down those steps walking the way he was.

2) Thanks for the chiding at the end, PSA announcer dude.



Family Fallout Shelter on display in Milwaukee, WI, 1958.

Family Fallout Shelter on display in Milwaukee, WI, 1958.

Oh, you know–just hangin’ around the fallout shelter.

Kind of disturbing that the nuclear warhead has made it’s way through the Civil Defense triangle logo. Not what I would have gone with, but hey.

Happy Friday!


Great first person walk-through of the old Dallas Civil Defense Emergency Operations Center fallout shelter. It’s located under one of the buildings at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science at Fair Park. Unfortunately, it isn’t open to the public. But don’t let this stop you! A nice email or friendly phone call can go a long way towards getting yourself a tour of an atomic site. Trust me. 🙂

The Civil Defense Museum has a great write up of the shelter, based on a few visits to the site.

And while we’re in Texas, here’s an interesting piece about a house and fallout shelter in Oak Park, Texas.


Surviving Fallout – Rural Civil Defense – 1965 – Part 1/10

Puppet cows! Puppet Farmers! Moving cinder blocks, even!

Check out this great old PSA about protecting farm animals from nuclear fallout using barns and hay.

Plus there’s mention of a pamphlet, “Your Livestock Can Survive Fallout From a Nuclear Attack.” I MUST find this guide.

I dare you not to giggle while you watch. I seriously can’t quit laughing at the absurdity of the whole thing. Puppets!

Oh! This is part 1/10, so there are lots more a-comin’!