The unromantic, untold story of the great US divorce spree of 1946


#TIA – This is billed as an untold story and it surely was to us: the great marriage breakup after World War II.

“The end of World War II marked the beginning of beautiful love stories for thousands of US couples, as sweethearts who’d deferred marriage during the war rushed to wed in peacetime.

But 1946 is also the year of a demographic blip often overlooked in the history of postwar America: an unprecedented spate of divorces.

A look at US marriage rates in the 20th century shows how history influenced couples’ decisions to wed. The marriage rate declined during the hardship of the Great Depression. It spiked upon US entry into World War II, with couples marrying (sometimes rashly) before the husband shipped off overseas. “It’s a great line if you’re a guy: ‘Hey baby, I’m gonna go fight Hitler. Want to get married?” said Nick Wolfinger, a professor of family and consumer studies at the University of Utah. (As data scientist Randal Olson has pointed out, there was a similar uptick in US weddings at the start of World War I.)”

Read more at Quartz