A Hungarian chemist during WWII hid his Nobel Prize by dissolving it in acid and leaving it on a shelf due to the Nazi ban on its citizens from accepting the Nobel Prize. After the war, he reconstituted the gold from the acid, returned it to Sweden, and got the medal cast again.
Notorious mafia boss “Lucky” Luciano aided the WWII effort from his prison cell by ordering his men to protect the East Coast from foreign invasion and convincing his Italian mafia contacts to help the Allies during their invasion of Sicily.
In a study of 640 dream journals conducted by Harvard, psychologists determined the dreams of prisoners in WWII POW camps were less aggressive than the standard male population. Rather than visions of extreme violence, the majority of soldiers dreamed of escape, family, loneliness, and home.
Fish and chips is historically so important to the UK that in WWI, the British government made safeguarding supplies of them a priority and during WWII, Churchill refused to ration the dish.
Chef Boyardee of canned Ravioli fame was awarded both the Gold Star order of excellence from the US War Dept. & the Order of Lenin from Russia for supplying rations to allied troops during WWII.
During WWII, the national speed limit was reduced to 35 mph to save gasoline and tire wear. A trip across Utah could take nine hours instead of five.
In WWII, weather reports were censored to prevent enemy submarines from learning about conditions. A football game in Chicago was so covered in fog that the radio announcer couldn’t see the field, but afterwards he was officially thanked for never using the word “fog” or mentioning the weather.
An American woman never learned what happened to her husband, whose plane was shot down over Les Ventes, France during WWII. She finally got her congressman to reopen his case in 2011. She was shocked to learn the town had been memorializing him and his sacrifice for 67 years.
During WWII, Hawaii had its own unique US banknotes. In case of Japanese invasion, the US government would have declared the notes worthless to prevent their use by Japanese troops.
A French Mathematician concealed his proficiency with differential equations to avoid working for the Nazis. While in a POW camp, he developed sheaves, sheaf cohomology, and spectral sequences which are important tools for modern Algebraic Geometry.