April 16, 2008

Cold War

Filed under: Historic District, Markers, & Flags — lessie @ 2:24 pm

Another photo from Whitner Street. I thought this was merely strange at first. Survival biscuits, 89 per pound. (I was kinda scared to get too close.) But then the printing on the bent cover started sinking in. CIVIL DEFENSE ALL PURPOSE. SURVIVAL BISCUIT. Date of Pack February — April 1963. Whaaaat???? 

The imminence of nuclear war was still discussed when I was in elementary school in the ’70s. But the serious intent, the planning, the fear, which resulted in the production and distribution of this tin of “survival biscuits” —  is still amazing to me. (Even the name, SURVIVAL biscuits…) I looked briefly on the Web, and it appears these tins were to be stored in fall-out shelters. An anachronism today. However, not a charming one. And perhaps I am naive to relegate such fear to the past.

I remember the fear after 9-11. Terroists next to us on the street. Dirty bombs and deadly viruses to be released in public places. Death Valley and Hartwell Dam ready targets for violence. It was all possible. It still is. Perhaps Civil Defense has been replaced with the Department of Homeland Security. After visiting the DHS Web site, I learned today’s threat level is yellow, (merely) elevated. For domestic flights, the threat is orange, high. DHS recommends that

All Americans should continue to be vigilant, take notice of their surroundings, and report suspicious items or activities to local authorities immediately. Everyone should establish an emergency preparedness kit and emergency plan for themselves and their family, and stay informed about what to do during an emergency. Learn more about preparedness at

Geez, I want to go back to being amused at those quaint 1963 biscuits.



  1. It makes ya think, doesn’t it? But, you can’t live that way, worrying all the time, which is why people stop doing it after a while.

    Comment by crittoria — April 16, 2008 @ 4:17 pm

  2. Wow, what’s crazy is that you found this laying around? All these years later.

    It’s interesting how now we’re basically immune to the threat, and war is just something that’s happen off somewhere.

    Comment by Waldo — April 16, 2008 @ 6:51 pm

  3. Woah, dude, too deep for a Thursday afternoon. You’re seriously harshing my mellow…

    Comment by Camille — April 17, 2008 @ 9:08 pm

  4. That’s a piece of history! Interesting…

    Comment by Elsa — August 21, 2008 @ 8:42 pm

  5. i have a can from 1962 not open

    Comment by shawn — April 29, 2009 @ 3:33 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: