Hollywood Canteen opens
Seventy years ago, on 3 October 1942, the Hollywood Canteen opened its doors to servicemen at 1451 Cahuenga Blvd., on the site of a former livery stable. Using the model of the Stage Door Canteens, the Hollywood Canteen was an entertainment space free for all servicemen, staffed completely by volunteers. On opening night the Hollywood Canteen raised $10,000 by charging $100 for bleacher seats to watch as the stars paraded in. Founder Bette Davis recalled that it was so crowded on opening night that she had to climb through a window to get in. Before closing on Thanksgiving Day 1945, the Hollywood Canteen entertained nearly four million servicemen.
Visit the Stage Door Canteen at The National WWII Museum for live entertainment and to see the letter from Bette Davis and other artifacts related to the Hollywood Canteen.
Post by Curator Kimberly Guise.