There are few accomplishments in my life that I am sincerely proud of. The Hollywood Canteen is one of them.
—Bette Davis, 1987
After learning of the success of New York’s Stage Door Canteen, Bette Davis (1908–1989), along with fellow Hollywood star John Garfield (1913–1952), established the Hollywood Canteen, where during World War II some 2,500 servicemen danced nightly with stars and volunteer hostesses, enjoyed top flight entertainment, and dined for free. Stars, such as Marlene Dietrich (1901–1992) and Basil Rathbone (1892–1967) served sandwiches, bussed tables, washed dishes, and manned the snack bar. To celebrate the canteen’s first birthday, Davis and Garfield paid tribute to the more than 6,000 members of the motion picture industry who had joined the armed forces by unveiling the Hollywood Hall of Honor.