Dec. 24, 1941: Japanese submarines attack two U.S. tankers, with explosions that are heard as far inland as in San Luis Obispo, sinking a 7,272-ton Union Oil ship. Capt. Olaf Eckstrom of Inglewood says a torpedo struck the ship directly beneath the bridge. All crew members of the Montebello are reported safe.
M.L. Waltz, editor of the Cambrian newspaper, witnessed the battle from shore and said: “She upended like a giant telephone pole and slowly settled into the sea.”
Fox West Coast Theatresannounce that they will be open during blackouts. “The show must go on!”
Times reporter Tom Treanor, who was killed covering the liberation of France, says few traitors were arrested in the FBI’s recent roundup of spies. “They are mostly 100% enemy agents working for the homeland, Germany Japan or Italy.”
Able-bodied womenages 18 to 45 are being urged to volunteer as air wardens.
Despite the name, the volunteers do far more than watch the skies. They “are engaged in transmission of information, map plotting and filterboard room operation,” The Times says.
The filterboard is a large map of Southern California. “Dozens of women stand around the edge, wearing telephone ear and mouthpiece sets, listening, changing “pawns” on the board. For ease in reaching the various arrows, blocks and targets, there are long-handled rakes and hoes.
Jimmie Fidler says: Lillian Gish, silent pictures star, has turned down a comeback role in Paramount’s “Mrs. Wiggs of Cabbage Patch” because the part was too old.