All-black Female WWII Unit Will Receive Congressional Gold Medal

( On March 14, President Biden signed a bill awarding the Congressional Gold Medal to the women of the “Six Triple Eight,” the all-black Women’s Army Corps unit, the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion.

The award is being granted “in recognition of their pioneering military service, devotion to duty, and contributions to increase the morale of personnel stationed in the European theater of operations during World War Two.

About 850 back women served in the Six Triple Eight that was tasked with sorting through the massive backlog of mail. They traveled to the UK in 1945 where they spent months sorting through the mail and packages stacked from floor to ceiling in unheated warehouses.

Their motto was “No mail, low morale.”

The women of the Six Triple Eight set up a new mail tracking system that enabled them to clear a six-month backlog of mail in just three months. By the end of the war, the unit had processed around 17 million pieces of mail.

The unit was led by Army Major Charity (Adams) Earley who rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel. Earley died in 2002, but her son Stanley was delighted by well-deserved, albeit belated, recognition of the Six Triple Eight.

According to Stanley Earley, as of last year, only seven members of the unit were believed to still be alive.

The bill was introduced by Kansas Republican Senator Jerry Moran and Nevada Democrat Senator Jacky Rosen. The Senate passed the bill in a bipartisan vote last April. It passed the House in February.

In a statement after the signing, Senator Moran said the Six Triple Eight “earned a special place in history” and now “their sacrifice is enshrined into law with the highest distinction Congress can bestow.”

In her statement, Senator Rosen described the Six Triple Eight as “heroic” and “barrier-breaking” and praised them for the “crucial role” they played during World War Two.

In 2018, a monument honoring the Six Triple Eight was dedicated in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. There is also a documentary about the unit, “The Six Triple Eight: No Mail, Low Morale.”