Sept. 2, 1945, signing of Japanese surrender historic, but not that newsworthy in Gardnerville at the time
The Sept. 2, 1945, signing of surrender documents aboard the USS Missouri was an anti-climax for residents of Carson Valley at the time.
The real celebration came more than two weeks earlier when it was announced that Japan had surrendered.
Carson Valley residents celebrated the end of the war on Aug. 14 by sounding sirens, honking horns and setting off fireworks.
“Many stores closed as soon as the doors could be locked and there were smiles and tears as people gathered on the streets,” The R-C reported. “At 7 p.m., an impromptu parade made up of the fire engines, the ambulance and private cars with horns blaring toured the streets. Until late at night, people gathered and discussed the good news.”
The following day businesses were closed across the Valley.
While recognizing the official end of World War II on Sept. 2, 1945, The R-C was more concerned with burying its honored dead.
The front page of the Aug. 31 edition had a photo of the USS Missouri, but the big story in the Gardnerville weekly was about the county’s assessment rolls.
The following issue, published five days after the surrender, focused on what was next, carrying a story about a long-delayed memorial service for Kenneth Storke, who was killed storming a Japanese machinegun nest on May 22, 1945.