In NCFR’s 75 years of existence, the organization has only missed three annual conferences: 1942, 1943, and 1945. Pearl Harbor hurled the United States into World War II on December 7, 1941. By 1942 the country was fully involved. NCFR’s conference that year had been scheduled for December 28-30, 1942, with the theme of “Marriage in War Time.” In cooperation with the Office of Civil Defense, the conference was cancelled in order to keep train travel reserved for the military troops. The 1943 Conference which was to have taken place May 21-23, 1943 was also cancelled for the same reasons. However, during those years, NCFR members and the growing affiliates stayed busy.
The 4th NCFR conference did take place from June 18-20, 1944 at the Steven’s Hotel, Chicago. The theme was “Problems Facing the Family in the Post War Period.” This conference was intended to be a “working” conference rather than one of paper presentations. By this time there were seven study committees formed and each of them conducted “Round Tables” at the conference. The overarching concern permeating discussions appeared to be the professional education for marriage and family counselors, which arose from the issues of the military returning from a bloody war, and the fact that the family disciplines were fairly new.
The war ended in the summer of 1945 and the next NCFR conference took place April 6-8, 1946 at the Bellevue Stratford Hotel, in Philadelphia, PA. The theme was “New Foundations for Marriage and the Family.”