Duck and Cover: Surreal 1950s A-Bomb Educational Video

Most of us don’t think about atomic weapons on a daily basis these days, but during the Cold War every man, woman and child in America was prepared for a world-ending blast at any moment. Government videos, posters and instructional materials warned of the imminent danger of the A-bomb taking out everything in its path. As this vintage video from the 1950s shows, even schoolchildren were taught to be constantly on edge and ready to run for their lives.

This video will look familiar to those who grew up in America in the 50s. It was shown in schools to educate children on what to do when the air raid sirens went off and an A-bomb detonation was imminent…or when the tell-tale flash went off and there was no time to react. The surreal instructions are made even more odd by the star of the film: the lovable cartoon turtle, Bert, who taught kids how to “duck and cover” to save their lives.

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See more in Vintage Videos or under Vintage & Retro. July, 2010.