Sunday, July 6, 2014

Spoiler: Cryptogram Solution

Perhaps you  remember Ralphie -- how excited he was to send off the Ovaltine label and wait for his Little Orphan Annie Decoder Ring to arrive -- and with what anticipation he took down the secret message at the end of the radio show and sat at the kitchen table to deceipher it.  And the let-down when all it said was
                              "Be Sure to Drink Your Ovaltine!"
I'm remembering Ralphie because I was so excited to find a cryptogram in my high school notebook -- a secret message with exclamation points!! -- that I'd written? copied from somewhere? perhaps in 1942?  I couldn't wait to solve it, spent a happy and absorbing time at it yesterday, and this is what I found --
This war is a titanic world struggle in which the life and future of our country are at stake! The Nation needs your help!  Buy defense stamps and bonds!

Where do you suppose I copied that from?  It must have been earlier than 1942, because the War started in 1941.  Defense Bonds were surely known as War Bonds by 1942? -- and the posters had become a lot more emotional.

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