Female Journalists of World War II
Photojournalist Mary Marvin Breckinridge Patterson was in Switzerland in 1939 when Germany invaded Poland during World War II. She was one of only four American photographers in England in the early months of the war and captured photos of the evacuation of English children from the cities to the countryside. Breckinridge was the only female member of the Murrow Boys, a group of CBS Radio war correspondents under the direction of famed reporter Edward R. Murrow. While her work was essential to Americans hoping to understand the news from Europe, she was subject to censorship from German authorities. Listen to Breckinridge’s radio broadcast on Hitler’s entrance before a major speech in Berlin here.
Read the summary above one more time and listen to Mary Marvin Breckinridge Patterson’s radio broadcast on Hitler’s entrance into Berlin ahead of a key speech here. Then answer the questions in the boxes below.
Marvin Breckinridge Patterson, A New Career at the Microphone, Amsterdam, c. 1940. Library of Congress
Annotate this Image
Directions: Take a look at the illustration below, using the magnifier to help you. Then use the annotation tool to take notes on the following questions:
- As you scan the transcript, what do you notice first?
- Select one example the German censors crossed out on the transcript. Identify it by writing it down. Why do you think they may have made that decision?
- What seems to be the intent behind the German censorship?
Download the notes to share with your class.
Source: Mary Marvin Breckinridge Patterson radio script, Feb. 8, 1940. Library of Congress
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