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The GI BIll: 75 Years of Opportunity (Experiencing War, Stories from the Veterans History Project, Library of Congress)
On June 22, 1944, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law a particularly transformative piece of legislation. Designed to ease the eventual transition from military to civilian life for the millions of men and women in uniform during World War II, it provided a year’s worth of unemployment compensation, low-cost mortgages, low-interest business loans and, perhaps most notably, educational benefits. Officially titled the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, it came to be known as the GI Bill of Rights, and it would go on to change the lives of countless veterans. In the 75 years since it was created, the GI Bill has undergone a few changes, but it has continued to provide newly-minted veterans with the means to achieve higher education. Indeed, its power is so widely known that it has become an impetus for enlistment.

To commemorate the 75th anniversary of the GI Bill, the Veterans History Project presents the newest installment of Experiencing War, featuring the collections of 15 veterans who subsidized their education through this monumental legislation. For some, it enabled the achievement of long-held professional dreams; for others, it opened the door to new career possibilities. Through their stories, we see how the GI Bill has positively shaped the post-war lives of individual veterans who served in conflicts from World War II to Iraq and Afghanistan.
View blog post about this feature, written by Megan Harris »
Image: Michael ArndtMichael Arndt
MARINE CORPS
Persian Gulf

Audio Interview
Image: Charles E. BurrellCharles E. Burrell
NAVY
World War II

Audio Interview
Image: Steven Joseph HydeSteven Joseph Hyde
ARMY
Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq

Transcript
Image: Stanley KarnowStanley Karnow
ARMY Air Corps
World War II

Audio Interview
Image: Kara Ann KittrellKara Ann Kittrell
ARMY
Iraq

Video Interview
Image: John M. KuhlmanJohn M. Kuhlman
ARMY
World War II

Video Interview, Memoir, Personal Correspondence
Image: Robert P. MadisonRobert P. Madison
ARMY
World War II

Audio Interview
Image: Ed McGaaEd McGaa
MARINE CORPS
Vietnam & Cold War

Audio Interview
Image: Ira T. NealIra T. Neal
ARMY
Korea

Audio Interview
Image: Jonathan NewmarkJonathan Newmark
ARMY
War on Terrorism

Video Interview
Image: Raymond Pyle, Jr.Raymond Pyle, Jr.
ARMY
World War II, Korea

Audio Interview, Photos, Memoir
Image: Judy Reed RussellJudy Reed Russell
AIR FORCE
Vietnam

Video Interview
Image: William Arthur Ehren ToolWilliam A.E. Tool
MARINE CORPS
Persian Gulf

Video Interview
Image: John Willliam WarnerJohn W. Warner
MARINE CORPS
World War II, Korea

Video Interview
Image: Harvey Charles ZimmermanHarvey Zimmerman
MARINE CORPS
Iraq

VIdeo Interview
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  February 6, 2019
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