Every so often, a story about Civil Defense supplies will appear in the media. It usually involves the finding of supplies or talk about Fallout Shelters or signs etc.
Recently, such a story appeared on boston.com when a staff member at Boston City Hall found the Civil Defense crackers and supplies located in the crawl spaces underneath the building and put up a video of himself eating one (I’d link the video but it was apparently made private after he was asked to remove it).
Shortly after boston.com picked up the story, the free and popular among subway riders Boston Metro paper decided to feature the story as well, and one of their reporters. Spencer Buell, contacted me to ask my thoughts on the subject. The resulting article was very good.
Just to clarify something, though….the reporter had me stating the following:
There are many places all over the city where crackers still sit right where the doomsday preppers of yesterday left them
and this is quite the opposite of what I said. I do not blame the reporter, because it was a quick but intense conversation about a lot of Fallout Shelter and Civil Defense facts and numbers. However, I told him that finding any type of Civil Defense supplies is quite rare, and the only two sites I know of definitively in the city that still have them are Boston City Hall and the Up Academy in South Boston.
Civil Defense supplies were not always issued to shelters. Even when they were, however, they were not always kept. Once the program lost popularity, shelter supplies were often cleaned out and removed for various reasons. Signs would often remain for years after, but even those are coming down as time goes on.
I applaud boston.com and Mr. Buell from the Metro for bringing light to an important piece of our history. But I can say with utmost certainty that finding these supplies is a rare occurrence, and trying them, as the staffer at City Hall did, is only for those with an iron stomach. (Most were packaged in 1962 or 1963….you do the math).
(If you do find supplies still in place anywhere please let us know, we’d like to hear about it).
Fallout Five Zero