Legacy Lecture

The Yoo-Hoo Incident: The Army’s First PR Scandal of WWII

September 21, 20235:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Marshall Foundation Building
340 VMI Parade
Lexington, Virginia 24450


Join us for a lecture by Tom Arnold at the GCMF building in Lexington, Virginia, on Thursday, September 21, 2023 at 5:30 p.m. A reception will follow the lecture.


What the Army’s First Public Relations Scandal of WWII Reveals About America in 1941

In the summer of 1941, the U.S. Army suddenly found itself embroiled in its first public relations scandal of World War II. After the draft, but before Pearl Harbor shattered the peace, a small unit of American soldiers was punished by their commanding general for catcalling a group of women wearing shorts on a public street. The soldiers’ behavior and the women’s attire sparked a controversy that extended well beyond the incident itself. The ensuing public debate did cover changing social norms, but it really centered on how and why the soldiers were punished, ultimately revealing different expectations of how the American people believed their Army should treat citizen soldiers in peacetime.


How can I attend?

The event is free to the public, but reservations are required. To reserve a seat, or for more information about the event, contact [email protected] or call 540.463.7103, ext. 138.


How can I watch from home?

The presentation will also be livestreamed on the Marshall Foundation YouTube channel (https://bit.ly/2Or0E8D) simultaneously. Viewers of the stream are encouraged to write questions using the live video chat (to the lower right of the video) or via email at [email protected]. Chat will be monitored for abusive comments.


Who is Tom Arnold?

Thomas D. Arnold is a U.S. Army strategist and Goodpaster Fellow currently assigned to the Corcoran History Department at the University of Virginia.  He is a second year PhD student, examining Army media relations from 1939–59.  His research interests focus on modern American military history, the Cold War, and African American history.  Tom is originally from Shreveport, Louisiana, and has served in command and staff assignments in Germany, Iraq, Afghanistan, Louisiana, and the Pentagon.  He holds graduate degrees from Louisiana Tech University and Harvard University.  After completing his studies at UVA, Tom will return to duty with the Army as a strategic planner and policy advisor.