Comedy legends Abbott and Costello visit Lincoln, Nebraska

World War II was a time of turmoil and uncertainty in the world, but it was also a time that saw families, towns, and in fact the whole country come together. Scrap metal drives were held, war bonds sold; even celebrities got involved, using their popularity to help the cause. Two such celebrities were screen and radio comedians Bud Abbott and Lou Costello, who toured the nation twice selling war bonds and raising an estimated $85 million for the U.S. government.

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello signing autographs for children from a jeep in front of the State Capitol Building, July 31, 1942. -- Courtesy Nebraska State Historical Society / #RG2183.PH001942-000731-2

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello signing autographs for children from a jeep in front of the State Capitol Building, July 31, 1942.

Courtesy Nebraska State Historical Society / #RG2183.PH001942-000731-2

During their 1942 war bond tour, the comedy duo made a quick trip to Lincoln where Nebraska Governor Dwight Griswold and a plethora of excited citizens received them at the State Capitol. The two shook hands with and signed autographs for adults and children alike, and were later provided with several souvenirs to remember their stay. These included certificates designating them as admirals in the fictitious “Nebraska Navy,” and an ear of corn for each labeled “From Nebraska, the Cornhusker State.”

Comedians Bud Abbott and Lou Costello receive an ear of corn from Governor Dwight Griswold on the north steps of the State Capitol Building, July 31, 1942. -- Courtesy Nebraska State Historical Society / #RG2183.PH001942-000731-3

Comedians Bud Abbott and Lou Costello receive an ear of corn from Governor Dwight Griswold on the north steps of the State Capitol Building, July 31, 1942.

Courtesy Nebraska State Historical Society / #RG2183.PH001942-000731-3

See hundreds of other historic and stunning images in the Journal Star’s new book, Volume II: Lincoln Memories.

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