Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection
Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection, 1862-
Extent: 11.0 Linear Feet
Arrangement: The first series documents the life of Carleton Elliott Simensen. The remaining series are arranged in chronological order, with any sub-series arranged in alphabetical order.
Subjects: Military History
Access Restrictions: Open for inspection under the rules and regulations of the Elwyn B. Robinson Department of Special Collections.
Acquisition Method: The Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection was created by the Elwyn B. Robinson Department of Special Collections to solicit materials documenting how North Dakota and the surrounding region were affected by wars and military conflicts.
Preferred Citation: (Description of Item). Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection. OGLMC 1278, Box #, Folder #. Elwyn B. Robinson Department of Special Collections. Chester Fritz Library. University of North Dakota, Grand Forks.
Finding Aid Revision History: The finding aid was significantly revised by Heather Mohr, Special Collections intern, in March 2012, and added to Archon at that time.
Browse by Series:
[Series 1: Carleton Elliott Simensen, 1919-1941],
[Series 2: Civil War, 1861-1865],
[Series 3: Spanish American War, 1898-1899],
[Series 4: WW I, 1914-1918],
[Series 5: Second Sino-Japanese War, 1937],
[Series 6: WW II Pacific Theater],
[Series 7: WW II Europe and North Africa],
[Series 8: WW II Home-Front],
[Series 9: Korean War, 1950-1953],
[Series 10: Vietnam War, 1953-1975],
[Series 11: Persian Gulf War, 1990-1991],
- Series 1: Carleton Elliott Simensen, 1919-1941
- Sub-Series 1: Robert Chatfield
- Robert Chatfield donated one photograph taken at UND in approximately 1940. The photo depicts Robert Chatfield, Carleton Elliott Simensen, La Veern Abelson and an unidentified ROTC cadet. All four are in uniform. The photo was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (OGL #1278-5). (Accession #93-1907)
- Sub-Series 2: William Pratt
This accession consists of one folder of photocopied materials related to Carleton Elliott Simensen. Documents include correspondence, photographs, genealogical information, obituaries of Simensen and his parents, and page 142 from DEC. 7, 1941: The Day the Japanese Attacked Pearl Harbor by Gordon W. Prange, et al. This page describes Simensen's death on the USS Arizona. Three photographs of Simensen have been separated and placed in the Orin G. Libby Photograph Collection. This initial accession was a gift of William R. Pratt, Simensen's childhood friend and UND roommate. Pratt donated these materials July 27, 1993. (Acc # 93- 1896)
Three photographs have been separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. These include a picture of Carleton Elliott Simensen in uniform taken in 1940 (OGL #1278-1), a portrait of Simensen taken approximately at the time of his high school graduation in 1936 (OGL #1278-2) and a picture of Simensen with William Pratt taken at the time of their graduation from UND in 1940 (#1278-3).
- Sub-Series 3: Mabel Rutherford
- Mabel Rutherford donated one photo of her brother, Carleton Elliott Simensen, with her son, Charles Rutherford. The photo was taken circa 1941 when Rutherford was two and a half years old. Charles Rutherford later served as a special agent for the FBI in 1970-1995. The photo has been separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (OGL #1278-56)
- Sub-Series 4: Kenneth Simensen
This accession consists of one folder of materials containing Kenneth Simensen's narrative memories of his brother and a brief recap of his own military service in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Simensen retired from the military in 1968 with the rank of Major, United States Air Force. (Accession # 94-1947)
One photo of Virgil Banning, Carleton Elliott Simensen and Orville Bergren (all in uniform) taken in approximately 1941 was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (OGL #1278-4).
- Sub-Series 5: Francis Simensen Stensrud
- This accession consists of one folder of materials donated by Frances Simensen Stensrud, sister of Carleton Elliott Simensen. These include a telegram from the U.S. Marine Corps informing Elliott Simensen's family of his death, a posthumous letter of commendation from the Secretary of the Navy, a copy of the Gold Star Mother card presented to Mabel Simensen by the American Legion and Mabel Simensen's reply, copies of two photos - one of Simensen in uniform and another of Carleton, Mabel and Frances Simensen taken at a "Special Honor Day" ceremony at UND shortly after Pearl Harbor. Also included are a high school paper written by Elliott Simensen in 1936 and a newspaper clipping regarding the wartime service of Kenneth Simensen, brother of Elliott. (Accession # 93-1902)
- Series 2: Civil War, 1861-1865
The American Civil War was fought during the years of 1861-1865 between the federal governement of the United States (Union Army) and the Confederate States of America (southern states who secceeded from the Union.) This particular war was fought in response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President. Eleven southern slave owning states therefore declared their secession from the United States and formed theConfederate States of America.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to the Civil War.
- Sub-Series 1: William Bertram Coyle
William Bertram Coyle was born in Baltimore, Maryland on July 4, 1847. In September, 1861, Coyle entered the School of Medicine at the University of Maryland. He was then 14 years old. In May, 1863, he and some classmates left the University without leave and enlisted in the Union Army. As a result, the students were expelled for insubordination. In the Civil War, Coyle saw combat in Virginia and briefly served as a Prisoner of War (He was released after a few weeks in a prisoner exchange.). After the war, Coyle resumed his study of medicine at Queen's College in Belfast, Ireland. He graduated in 1868 and spent the next three years traveling Europe, Asia and Africa. He returned to the United States in 1871 and he became an acting assistant surgeon in the U.S. Army. He served on the Great Plains under Generals Custer, Crook and Miles and saw combat against Native Americans. He was an Army hospital steward at Camp Thomas, Arizona Territory, in 1879 and at Fort Robinson, Nebraska in 1882. Here he married Florence Handel on February 7, 1882, and a son, William Bertram, Jr., or "Bertie," was born on December 11, 1882. In 1883, the Coyle’s moved to Dakota Territory, settling in Spearfish and then Ipswich (both of which are now in South Dakota). A daughter, Florence, was born December 8, 1884. In 1890, the Coyle’s moved to Lakota, North Dakota where Coyle began a medical practice. In 1895, his son, Bertie, was thrown from a horse and killed. Coyle's wife, Florence, died the next year. Coyle continued to practice medicine in Lakota. He died there in 1903. This addition to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection consists of two separate donations from Gerry Wagness of the Lakota Public Library and Elizabeth Paul, a granddaughter of William Bertram Coyle who currently lives in Kalispell, Montana. Wagness donated the first folder of materials, which contains a family history by Coyle's daughter, Florence Coyle Wright, a copy of Coyle's obituary, a copy of Coyle's authorization to practice medicine in Dakota Territory (dated 1888) and two photos, one of Coyle with fellow Civil War veterans in the Grand Army of the Republic and another of Coyle's two children at a young age. Remaining materials were donated by Elizabeth Paul of Kalispell, Montana, a granddaughter of William Bertram Coyle. These document his military and medical career and personal life. They consist partly of U.S. Army documents received by Coyle, including notices of appointment, discharge papers, traveling cards and correspondence, spanning the years 1865-1893. Other papers span the years 1881-1906. These consist of correspondence, a copy of notes on a lecture by Coyle on heredity, a note from the North Dakota State Board of Medical Examiners authorizing Coyle to practice medicine in North Dakota, an ode written by Coyle and presented by him on Memorial Day, 1896, Resolutions of Sympathy from Euclid Lodge #24 upon the deaths of Coyle's son and wife and a 1906 letter from the Commercial Bank of Fargo requesting information on any surviving family members on behalf of Coyle's daughter, Florence Coyle Wright. Other materials include photographs, an 1883 medal from the Woman's Relief Corps, a ribbon commemorating the Seventh Annual Encampment of the North Dakota GAR (Grand Army of the Republic), a medallion commemorating a national encampment of the GAR, the memoirs of Albert Wright regarding the Sioux War of 1862 and newspaper clippings of Wright's recollections of same. The collection consists of two separate accessions. The first folder contains materials donated by Gerry Wagner of the Lakota City Library in Lakota, North Dakota. The materials were photocopied from Lakota Library holdings. Items photocopied include Coyle's obituary, a biography of Coyle written by his sister, Florence Coyle Wright, and photos of a young William Bertram and Florence and of Coyle with other Lakota members of the Grand Army of the Republic (Accession # 93-1898).
Four photographs were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets (OGL #1278-6-9). These consist of three portraits of William Bertram Coyle (one showing him in uniform) taken in 1902 and one photo of Fort Robinson, Nebraska taken circa 1882.
Four oversized portraits, three 1924 newspaper clippings describing A.M. Wright's recollections of the 1862 Sioux War, an 1879 Army document appoint Coyle as Hospital Steward for the U.S. Army, and an 1886 authorization to practice medicine in the Dakota Territory were placed in the Oversize File Cabinets.
- Box 1
- Folder 19: Photos, Appointment to County Board of Health, Biography, Obituary: 1888, 1903 and not dated
- Folder 20: Army Papers: 1865-1879
- Folder 21: Army Papers: 1882-1893
- Folder 22: Personal Papers: 1881-1906
- Folder 23: "History Written by Albert M. Wright of Skirmishes with Indians at Fort Abercrombie:" circa 1924
- Oversize Folder 1: Articles Pertaining to William Bertram Coyle
Newspaper clippings RE: Albert M. Wright
History of Fort Abercrombie, 1924
Authorization to Practice Medicine in Dakota Territory, 1886
U.S. Army Appointment as Hospital Steward, 1879
- Sub-Series 2: Ted Pedeleski
- Ted Pedeleski of the University of North Dakota Political Science Department contributed six prints to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection. The prints are of paintings depicting Minnesota regiments at Little Rock, Corinth, Mississippi, Vicksburg, Nashville, Missionary Ridge and Gettysburg. The prints were separated and placed in OGL #1278 Oversize Folder # 9.
- Sub-Series 3: George Sawyer
George Sawyer was a Civil War soldier from Medford, Minnesota. He enlisted in the First Minnesota regiment on April 29, 1861. At some point within the next two years, he became engaged to Helen Sanborn, a teenager in Medford. Sawyer wrote her several letters from Maryland and Virginia. With the First Minnesota, Sawyer first saw combat at the First Battle of Bull Run and went on to participate in General George McClellan's Peninsula Campaign. He eventually rose to the rank of Corporal and fought in many battles, including the Battle of Antietam, which is often cited as the bloodiest one-day battle of the war. Sawyer died at the Battle of Gettysburg on July 2, 1863. Sanborn eventually married Walter Wilkins, another Union veteran.
The documents include photocopied correspondence from George Sawyer to his fiancée, Helen Sanborn from the years 1862-1863. The letters provide one soldier's view of the war. Sawyer was patriotic but also commented on the rigors of camp life, his homesickness and his plans to marry Helen. He was often preoccupied with events in Minnesota, including the 1862 Sioux Uprising in the southern part of the state. Sawyer died at the Battle of Gettysburg on July 2, 1863. The collection is two folders in length. The first folder contains photocopies of the twenty-four existing complete letters. The second folder contains unassembled fragments of several letters. These records were donated to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection by Arlem Bryngelson of Bemidji, Minnesota in July, 1993. Bryngelson is the great grandson of Helen Sanborn, the recipient of Sawyer's letters (Accession # 93-1898).
- Sub-Series 4: South Dakota National Guard Museum
John Madigan of the South Dakota National Guard Museum donated two folders of materials. Materials were photocopied from holdings in the South Dakota National Guard Museum.
The first folder includes photocopied historical essays. The first is a history of the United States National Guard. The second essay details the history of the Dakota Territorial Militia and the third explains the Territorial militia's role in the Civil War. Subsequent essays describe the South Dakota National Guard's roles in the Spanish American War, World War I, World War II, Korean War and Berlin Crisis of 1961. The final essay is an historical summary of the South Dakota Air National Guard.
The second folder contains photocopies of the World War II diaries of Col. Kenneth R. Scurr, Commanding Officer of the 147th Field Artillery of the South Dakota National Guard (Accession # 93-1923).
- Oversize Folder 9: Artwork Pertaining to Minnesota Participation in the Civil War
- Minnesota Regiments in the Civil War, undated print collection
- Series 3: Spanish American War, 1898-1899
The Spanish American War was a conflict in 1898 between Spain and the United States, effectively the result of American intervention in the ongoing Cuban War of Independence. American attacks on Spain's Pacific possessions led to involvement in the Philippine Revolution and ultimately to the Philippine-American War. Although the main issue was Cuban independence, the ten-week war was fought in both the Caribbean and the Pacific. American naval power proved decisive, allowing U.S. expeditionary forces to disembark in Cuba against a Spanish garrison already reeling from nation-wide insurgent attacks and wasted by yellow fever.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to the Spanish Amerian War
- Sub-Series 1: North Dakota Payroll Records
This addition to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection consists of payroll records for eight companies assigned to the 1st North Dakota Infantry, United States Volunteers that served in the Philippines during the Spanish American War. Also contained here are similar records of a Hospital Corps detachment, members of the Field & Staff Company, as well as individual payroll records and general orders of a few officers and noncommissioned officers.
Most payroll records include names, ranks, dates, amounts paid. Many records also contain descriptions of duties and assignments. Individual records have been arranged alphabetically by surname. Unit records are arranged alphabetically by Company, with the Hospital Corps detachment and Field & Staff Company last. These records were purchased from Charles Apfelbaum (Rare Manuscripts and Archives dealer), Valley Stream, New York in February 1993.
- Box 1
- Folder 24: Black, Nelson M., APR-JUL 1899
- Folder 25: Eager, Charles H., JUL 1899
- Folder 26: Foster, Charles S., MAY 1899
- Folder 27: Healy, Ambrose M., JUL 1899
- Folder 28: Mudgett, C.F., DEC 1898-FEB 1899
- Folder 29: Russater, John, JUL 1899
- Folder 30: Smith, Fred E. JUL 1899
- Folder 31: Wallace, Dan H., DEC 1898
- Folder 32: A Company (Bismarck), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 33: B Company (Fargo), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 34: C Company (Grafton), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 35: D Company (Devils Lake), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 36: G Company (Valley City), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 37: H Company (Jamestown), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 38: I Company (Wahpeton), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 39: K Company (Dickinson), SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 40: Hospital Corps, SEP-OCT 1898
- Folder 41: Field & Staff Company, SEP-OCT 1898
- Sub-Series 2: Philippine Theater, North Dakota Pamphlet
- This material consists of one pamphlet, one newspaper and two magazines outlining the history of North Dakota's involvement in the Philippine War of 1899. The pamphlet is entitled "The 1st North Dakota Volunteers in the Philippine Insurrection," and was published by the North Dakota National Guard. The newspaper was a special edition published by the North Dakota Humanities Council in February 1999, entitled "TR, Cowboys, Rough Riders and Our Boys in the Philippines." One magazine is the February 1999 edition of "VFW," published by the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and contains several articles on the Philippine War. The May 1999 edition of the same magazine contains an article regarding Young's Scouts, (led by William H. Young) and composed partly of members from the 1st North Dakota Volunteer Infantry. Deposited by Frank and Sandy Slater, Grand Forks, North Dakota, in the spring of 1999 (Acc.#99-2308).
- Series 4: WW I, 1914-1918
In hindsight, causes of the Great War included the imperialistic foreign policies of the great powers of Europe, including the German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, the Russian Empire, the British Empire, France, and Italy. The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, (c. 1914) the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, by a Yugoslav nationalist was the spark that ignited it all. Overall the defeat of Germany (as well as Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire and Russia) and the unfair Treaty of Versailles led to the beginning of WW II.
The following folders contain documents and folders pertaining to WW I.
- Sub-Series 1: Joe Brown
William Joseph “Joe” Brown was born on February 12, 1890, in Grand Forks, North Dakota. He was the son of Frank A. Brown, who worked for the Grand Forks Herald, and the grandson of William H. Brown, the first mayor of Grand Forks.
Joe Brown attended the city's public schools and graduated from Central High School. He then went to work for the Herald, but was drafted into the United States Army in 1918, due to World War I. After basic training in the U.S., Joe was shipped to France where he worked as a clerk in two separate hospitals.
After the war, he resumed employment for the Herald. He married Mabel Brenden on August 17, 1920. The couple had one son, Frank, and two daughters: Elsie Anne, and Barbara. In 1938, Brown was promoted to manager of the advertising department. Joe Brown died suddenly and unexpectedly from a heart attack at his home on February 15,1946. He is buried at Memorial Park Cemetery in Grand Forks.
The Joe Brown correspondence consists of 87 letters, the bulk of which date from July 26, 1918, through May 28, 1919. The documents have been divided into three folders: the first folder dates from July through August 1918, when he was stationed in Camp Custer, Michigan, and Camp Merritt, New Jersey. The second folder dates from September 1918 through February 17, 1919, which includes his trip overseas, a brief stay in England, and his assignment to Hospital Camp #59 in Issoudan, France, where he worked as a medical clerk. The third folder dates from February 23, 1919, through May 28, 1919, and consists of his transfer to the Sixth Cavalry, Medical Detachment, Vendome, France. Brown returned to the United States on June 29, 1918, at Newport News, Virginia.
Brown's letters were written to “Dad”, “Mother,” “Sis,” or Elsie, and his fiancée, Mabel. His letters alluded to the Spanish Flu which claimed millions of lives in the U.S.A. and worldwide; however, he almost never described seeing this illness in France or England. While he expressed concern for the folks back home he mentioned little about death, destruction, or the misery of war. His tone was pleasant and optimistic. Topics included such dynamics as good food, enjoyable trips while on leave to Paris or Versailles, and his becoming friends with a French family. He also expressed interest in North Dakota elections.
The letters were deposited in the Orin G. Libby Manuscript Collection by Barbara Brown Modisett, North Carolina, on March 23, 2004 (Acc.#2004-2707). Two books authored by Modisett, Letters Home: Joe Brown in World War I, and Colonel William H. Brown, 1832-1910: A Scrapbook were separated and placed in the North Dakota Book Collection. Letters Home was published in 1992, and consists of edited selections of Joe Brown’s World War I correspondence. Colonel William H. Brown was published in 2002 and consists of newspaper clippings, photographs, documents, and genealogical materials related to William H. Brown, Civil War veteran, and the first mayor of Grand Forks.
- Sub-Series 2: History and Rhymes of the Lost Battalion
The 308th Battalion of the 77th Infantry Division was trapped behind enemy lines during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive in the First World War without food, water, or reserve ammunition for 6 days . The Lost Battalion, as it was later known, lost over 400 men until they were eventually rescued by American forces on October 8, 1918. The History and Rhymes of the Lost Battalion was written by A Buck Private McCullum in 1929, and contains 140 pages of accounts of some of the men who served in the 308th Battalion as well as several poems, photographs, and maps.
The History and Rhymes of the Lost Battalion was deposited by Jerry Bulisco, Associate Dean of Student Life, University of North Dakota, on September 9, 2004 (Acc. #2004-2714).
- Sub-Series 7: Hubert Harrington
- Hubert Knight Harrington of Fargo, North Dakota served in World War I. This accession contains postcards collected by Harrington during his service in France. Some postcards are in books, while others are loose. The postcards depict various locations in France circa 1918.
- Sub-Series 3: Arthur M. Hovelsrud
Arthur M. Hovelsrud was born on May 26, 1893, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to Norwegian immigrants Martin and Mattie Hovelsrud. On February 24, 1918, he joined the United States Army where he served in the 32nd Engineers Band in Hoboken, New Jersey, until his discharge on August 24, 1919. In 1928, he and his wife Mauda became parents to a daughter, Dolores. The family eventually moved to Fergus Falls, Minnesota, where Hovelsrud died on June 8, 1953.
The material consists of correspondence to and from Arthur, dated 1918 to 1919. Two of the pieces of correspondence come from Rose Britman, New York City. Also included are several pictures of Hovelsrud and of Camp Merritt in Hoboken, where he was stationed. There are also two pictures of Hovelsrud and three business cards from when he was a member of Hovelsrud's Syncopated Orchestra in Crookston, Minnesota.
Also included are materials dated 1918 to 1919 relating to Lawrence Hovelsrud, Arthur's brother. They consist of a postcard, a letter written in French, and a permission to be absent pass. The collection also includes a flag signal instructor and a booklet of hymns.
This material was purchased from Berry Blossom Farm, Erskine, Minnesota, on November 6, 2004 (Acc. #2005-2769).
- Sub-Series 4: Arthur A. Johnson
Arthur A. Johnson was born in Hillsboro, North Dakota, on August 21, 1898. He attended the University of North Dakota in the fall of 1917, before enlisting with the U.S. Army on December 15, 1917. He first served as a member of the 160th Depot Brigade at Camp Custer, Michigan. In February 1918, he became a member of the 269th Aero Squadron at Gerstner Field, Louisiana. He was stationed overseas with the 269th from August 1918 until his discharge on July 21, 1919. After the war, he lived for many years in Evanston, Illinois. Arthur A. Johnson died on November 13, 1983, in Evanston.
The Arthur A. Johnson Correspondence consists of 31 letters sent by Johnson to his mother, Elise. Some of the letters were also written jointly to his sister, Mabel. The letters date from December 1917-January 1919, although the bulk of the correspondence dates from December 1917-June 1918. The letters follow Johnson's experiences through training in Missouri, Michigan, and Louisiana. The last three letters were written from France. Johnson discusses the nature of camp life at Jefferson Barracks (Missouri), Camp Custer (Michigan), and Gerstner Field (Louisiana). He frequently wrote on the subjects of weather, food, and training activities. He also frequently wrote of quarantines. He was quarantined for a time at Camp Custer, due to a threat of spinal meningitis. He also came down with the Spanish flu and scarlet fever after he arrived in France. From time to time, Johnson asked his mother to send him money or provisions, such as socks, towels, and foodstuffs. He also sought to make sure that he continued to receive the Hillsboro Banner.
Also included are several unidentified and undated portraits, presumably of Johnson, which were given photograph numbers OGL#1278-165 and OGL#1278-166. Also included is Johnson's business card, which lists him as a sergeant in the 269th Aero Squadron, and his "Application for Adjusted Compensation" form, dated 1924. This form outlines Johnson's service history. The Department of Special Collections photocopied several documents, including Johnson's entry from the Official Roster of North Dakota World War I veterans; a selection from Yesteryears in Traill, outlining the history of the Johnson family; and Arthur Johnson's obituary from the November 18, 1983 edition of the Grand Forks Herald. Purchased from Charles Apfelbaum, Rare Manuscripts and Archives, Watchung, NJ, on April 8, 2003 (Acc.#2003-2643).
- Sub-Series 5: John Pfeifle/ Anton Mueller
- John Pfeifle was born May 1, 1896 in Eureka, South Dakota. He was living in Anamoose, North Dakota, when entered the United States Army on March 28, 1918. Pfeifle was a member of the 163rd Depot Brigade and the 137th Infantry, during his service which ended with his discharge on May 6, 1919. He was involved with the American offensive at the Argonne Forest in September 1918. Opposing the Americans was the German army, including an engineer named Anton Mueller. Following Germany's surrender in November 1918, Mueller immigrated to the United States, settling near Harvey, approximately 20 miles from Anamoose. In 1947, Pfeifle and Muller happened to meet on the streets of Harvey and became friends. This article from the March 14, 1974 Grafton Record outlines their history and friendship. John Pfeifle died in April 1981, while Anton Mueller died shortly after the publication of the article, in June 1975. This article was transferred from the Al Austin Papers on December 16, 1997 (Acc.#97-2612).
- Sub-Series 6: Star Flag
- This particular flag generally hung in a front window to indicate a loved one's service in the military during World War I. The flag shows a blue star in a white rectangle within a red background. Flag purchased by Sandy Slater at an auction. Separated and placed in OGL #1278 Oversize Folder 10.
- Series 5: Second Sino-Japanese War, 1937
Not to be confused with the First Sino-Japenese War of 1894-1895, the Second Sino-Japeanese War was the largest Asian war in the 20th century, and was a military conflict fought primarily between the Republic of China and the Empire of Japan. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (1941), the war merged into the greater conflict of World War II as a major front of what is broadly known as the Pacific War.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to the Sino-Japanese War.
- Sub-Series 1: Andy Foss
Andrew "Andy" Foss was born February 8, 1910 in Elbow Lake, Minnesota. He entered the United States Marine Corps on January 12, 1934 in Savannah, Georgia. He saw combat duty in World War II, before separating from the Marine Corps in January 1942. He worked for the Western States Life Insurance Company for many years following his military career. Andy Foss died on June 5, 1983 in Fargo.
The material consists of 28 photographs regarding Japanese atrocities in Shanghai, China, in August 1937. The photographs were taken by Andy Foss while he was a Marine attached to the United States Embassy. The photos depict the widespread slaughter of civilians, in addition to much property loss and destruction. Donated by Mark Foss (son of Andy Foss), Grand Forks, North Dakota, on February 18, 1998 (Acc.#98-2180). The photographs were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. The photographs are numbered OGL 1278-137 to OGL 1278-164.
- Series 6: WW II Pacific Theater
The Pacific War began on 7/8 December 1941 with the Japanese invasion of Thailand for the invasion of British Malaya, and the attack on Pearl Harbor in the United States' Territory of Hawaii by the Empire of Japan. Some authors consider the conflict in Asia can be dated as far as 7 July 1937, beginning with the Second Sino-Japanese War between the Empire of Japan and the Republic of China, however it is more widely accepted that the Pacific War itself started in early December 1941, with the Sino-Japanese War then becoming part of it as a theater of the greater World War II.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to WWII and the Pacific Theater
- Sub-Series 1: La Veern Abelson
La Veern Abelson was born in Sanish, North Dakota on September 1, 1916. He attended the University of North Dakota and was a classmate of Carleton Elliott Simensen, a fellow ROTC officer and 1940 graduate. In 1941, Abelson enlisted in the United States Army and was stationed in the Philippines. He was taken prisoner by the Japanese during the fall of Bataan and Corregidor in May, 1942. He died five months later. The La Veern Abelson Collection consists of materials donated by Russell Lake, Abelson's fellow UND alumnus and ROTC officer, and by Bernice Houser, Joseph Breslin and Jeffrey Wilbur of New Town, North Dakota. (Abelson's mother moved to New Town later in life.) The one folder of materials contains the following:
1) A letter and photocopy of two newspaper clippings from Bernice Houser, secretary of Sanish Riverview Cemetery near New Town, North Dakota, containing genealogical information on the Abelson family.
2) A photocopy of the 1945 church bulletin for Abelson's memorial service in Sanish and a letter from Joseph Breslin, who describes his memories of Abelson. Both items were donated by Joseph Breslin.
3) A photocopy from the Mountrail County book of World War II veterans, donated by Jeffrey Wilber. Additional notes by Wilber are included on the photocopy.
4) The actual church bulletin from Abelson's memorial service in Sanish in 1945. The bulletin was donated by Russell Lake.
5) Photocopy of a plaque honoring Abelson from the American Legion Post in New Town, North Dakota. Donated by Jeff Wilber (Acc.#99-2366).
Three photos of La Veern Abelson, donated by Russell Lake, were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (OGL #1278-65, 66, 67)
- Sub-Series 2: Linda Adams
- Linda Adams donated a series of thirteen photographs. She found the photos in a book that she purchased at an auction. Each photo depicts a scene from the Pacific Theatre of Operations during World War II. The photos were apparently taken by a soldier in the 164th Infantry, who describes each photo on the back. Photos depict captured Japanese equipment and buildings, Japanese ships (including one photo taken of a Japanese ship as it is sinking), a dead Japanese soldier, the 164th Infantry on the move and beaches where the 164th Infantry landed. The photos were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (#1278- 79-91)
- Sub-Series 3: Harold T. Anderson
Harold T. Anderson was born in Minot, North Dakota, on September 16, 1916. He joined the United States Army on December 27, 1941 and was discharged on December 11, 1945. He served in the Asiatic/Pacific Theatre with the 6th Army Air Force Radio Squadron (Mobile). The papers consist of several letters written by Anderson to his sister, Thelma, as well as his parents. Also included are several letters of Thelma Anderson, regarding her entry into nursing school in 1924. Donated by Jim Benjaminson, Walhalla, ND (Acc.#96-2080).
Four photographs and one unidentified and undated snapshot album were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. They include: one photo of Harold T. Anderson taken at Camp Roberts, California in 1942 (1278-112); two photos of Harold T. Anderson taken in India in 1945 (1278-113 and 1278-114); one unidentified photo (1278-115) and one "Aristo Snapshots" album.
- Sub-Series 4: Orville Bergren
- Orville Bergren was a classmate of Carleton Elliott Simensen, having graduated from the UND School of Commerce with him in 1940. While at UND, Bergren and Simensen were both in the ROTC, and upon graduation, both were appointed Second Lieutenants in the U.S. Marine Corp. Bergren was present (along with Simensen) at the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, and he was stationed on the U.S.S. West Virginia at the time. Bergren's donated materials consist of a letter describing both his relationship with Simensen and the Pearl Harbor attack (Acc. # 93-1921).
- Sub-Series 5: Robert George Bjoring
Robert George Bjoring was born in Grand Forks, North Dakota on August 26, 1920. In 1938, he entered the University of North Dakota with the intention of becoming a lawyer. While at UND, he participated in the Civilian Pilot Training Program and earned a private pilot's license. In 1940, he entered the United States Army Air Corps pilot training program. Upon graduation, he was stationed in the Philippines. He arrived there on Thanksgiving Day, 1941. He participated in battles on Luzon in the Philippines from December, 1941 through April, 1942. He was on the Bataan Peninsula when it was captured by the Japanese. When the prisoners were forming up to begin the Death March from Bataan, Bjoring escaped along with three other men. They were recaptured in Southern Luzon in July 1942, and Bjoring was then a prisoner of war until September, 1945.
Bjoring contributed two folders to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection. The first folder contains a photocopy of a paper that Bjoring wrote for a military history class at the University of Maryland in 1949. The paper concerns the defense of the Philippines from 1939-1942. Bjoring researched the paper from materials at the Library of Congress. The first folder also contains a 1993 letter from Bjoring describing the creation of his manuscript, "A 1920 Baby." Also included is a list of North Dakota World War II POW's found in the book Some Survived by Manny Lawton.
The second folder contains a copy of Bjoring's unpublished manuscript "A 1920 Baby." In this work, Bjoring describes his experiences during World War II. (Accession # 93-1931)
- Sub-Series 6: Aaron Boetcher
- Nancy Mulhern contributed a booklet written by her father, Aaron Boetcher. The booklet, entitled "Years Later I Remember the Months Serving in the Pacific War in the Decade that Changed the World," was written circa 1994. In it, Boetcher describes his experiences as a soldier in the South Pacific during World War II.
- Sub-Series 7: Gordon Caldis
Gordon Caldis was born March 26, 1920, in Bertha, Minnesota. He graduated from UND in May 1942 with a bachelor's degree in Commerce, after which he entered the U.S. Navy's Midshipman Program at Columbia University. While at Columbia, he volunteered for PT (Patrol Torpedo) Boat duty. He was sent to the Pacific Theater in June 1944 and saw action in several campaigns, including the Battle of Leyte Gulf (1944), and the invasions of Luzon and Borneo (1945). He was discharged in 1946, after serving as the Senior Interviewing Officer at the US Navy Separation Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He returned to UND and graduated with a law degree in 1948.
The material consists of Caldis' memories of World War II, entitled Gordon Caldis' Experiences in World War II, written in December 1997. It is 32 pages long, in addition to several photocopied photographs, maps and diagrams. Also included is a short biographical sketch. Caldis describes his naval training following graduation from UND, the inner-workings and missions of a PT Boat, the campaigns and battles he took part in, and Japanese kamikaze attacks against US Fleets. He also describes several Japanese attacks against his boat, PT Boat 522. Donated by Gordon Caldis, Grand Forks, North Dakota, on May 27, 1998 (Acc.#98-2236).
- Sub-Series 8: Rebecca Livengood Dyer
- Rebecca Livengood Dyer is a first cousin of Carleton Elliott Simensen. During World War II, she served in the Navy WAVES (Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service). Materials donated by Livengood Dyer include her written recollections of military service and a photocopy of her discharge papers. A photograph of Livengood Dyer in uniform, taken circa 1944, was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (OGL #1278-54).
- Sub-Series 9: PT Boats Inc.
PT Boats, Inc. was founded in 1946 to preserve the history of PT Boats in World War II. The National Headquarters is located in Memphis, Tennessee. Duane Renville, a World War II PT Boat veteran from Walhalla, serves as the PT Boats, Inc. State Coordinator for North Dakota. Materials in this accession were donated by Duane Renville and Gordon Caldis. Renville donated two copies of a pamphlet entitled "PT Boaters," a list of North Dakota PT Boaters, which includes some biographical information, and a copy of a bibliography on PT Boats, compiled by the National Headquarters of PT Boats, Inc. (Accession # 94-1948) Caldis contributed a photocopy of his biographical sketch from the book Knights of the Sea. (Accession # 94-1949)
Photos of several North Dakota PT Boaters, taken at a 1993 "North Dakota PT Boaters Bull Session" have been separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. Individuals photographed include Walter Hewitt of Minto, Harold Zolbahn of Drayton, Harold Wick of Grand Forks, Gordon Caldis of Grand Forks, Duane Renville of Walhalla, Steve Gorman of Fargo and Roscoe Kensworthy of Grand Forks. (OGL #1278-45 - 1278-51) A group photo of all of the above individuals is also stored in the Photograph Collection (OGL #1278-52). The collection also includes two additional photos of Renville - one taken at a PT Boat Reunion in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1993 (OGL #1278-44) and one taken in 1943 depicting Renville in naval uniform. (OGL #1278-53) Also separated was one oversize map depicting the Battle of Surigao Strait on October 25, 1994. Duane Renville received the map at the 1994 Annual PT Boat Reunion in Denver, Colorado. The map was stored in OGL #1278 Oversize Folder #5.
- Sub-Series 10: Russell Lake
Russell Lake was a close friend of Carleton Elliott Simensen and a fellow UND classmate and ROTC officer. In 1941, Lake enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was immediately assigned to the recruiting station in Fargo where he enlisted. Following this assignment, Lake was transferred to the University of Notre Dame to receive officer training. Lake was commissioned a Lieutenant and assigned to the LST 478. He saw duty in the South Pacific for the remainder of World War II. Following the war, Lake remained in the Naval Reserve and was honorably discharged in 1955. Lake contributed seven folders of documents and several photographs to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection. Documents include newspaper clippings relating to Lake's military experiences and to Carleton Elliott Simensen's death and posthumous citation for bravery, one folder of documents that Lake received from the U.S. Navy - consisting chiefly of enlistment papers, discharge papers and orders of assignment or transfer, a roster of Lake and his classmates in Officer Training School at Notre Dame, a poem written by Russell Lake shortly after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, a letter from Mabel Elliott Simensen written shortly after her son's death, "The True Story of the LST 478" by Carolyn Jewett Keefe [the daughter of Lake's fellow officer on the LST 478] and the discharge papers of H.A. Sneesly, uncle of Lake and World War I veteran. (Accession # 93-1900)
Several photos have been separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. These include: A photo of William Pratt, Phyllis Pratt, Verona Kumm and Carleton Elliott Simensen, circa 1941 (OGL #1278-57), two photos of Simensen at UND, circa 1936-1940 (OGL #1278-58, 1278-59), one group photo of Alan Severson, Russell Lake, La Veern Abelson, Robert Chatfield and Carleton Elliott Simensen, circa 1940 (OGL #1278-60), two photos of LST's in World War II, circa 1941-1945 (OGL #1278-61, OGL #1278-62), one official U.S. Navy photo of two unidentified sailors taken in World War II, circa 1941-1945 (OGL #1278-63), a portrait of Russell Lake, circa 1941-1945. (OGL #1278-64)
- Box 1
- Folder 9: Poem Written by Russell Lake [circa 7/15/41]
- Folder 10: Naval Papers, 1941-1946, 1955 and not dated
- Folder 11: Company 3, Platoon 3 - Morrisey Hall, Notre Dame - Names and Addresses, 1942
- Folder 12: Newspaper Clippings, not dated
- Folder 13: Letter from Mabel Elliott Simensen, not dated
- Folder 14: "The True Story of the LST 478" by Carolyn Jewett Keefe, 1988
- Folder 15: Discharge Papers of H.A. Sneesly (Uncle of Russell Lake), 1921
- Sub-Series 11: Senator Evan Lips
- North Dakota State Senator Evan Lips is a UND graduate and was recruited into the U.S. Marine Corps in 1941 by Carleton Elliott Simensen. He enlisted as a Private and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant. During World War II, Lips saw combat in the South Pacific, including engagements at Guam and Iwo Jima. Senator Lips donated one folder of materials containing a letter describing his experiences in World War II and his friendship with Carleton Elliott Simensen.
- Sub-Series 12: Robert C. Moore
Robert C. Moore grew up in Grand Forks, North Dakota. He enlisted in the United States Navy in 1941. Following service on an aircraft carrier, he was transferred to the Navy Air Corps and received pilot training. He ended World War II as a pilot in the U.S. Navy. His two younger brothers also served in the war - Jack in the Army and Clarence in the Navy. Moore's grandfather, Ambrose Goodbout, served in the Civil War with a Minnesota regiment and was later a member of the Grand Forks Grand Army of the Republic. Bob Moore donated 17 folders of materials. These include one folder of genealogical information regarding Moore's grandfather, Ambrose Goodbout, including photocopies of obituaries, a death certificate, a photo of his grave in The Civil War Cavalry Veterans Cemetery in Grand Forks and papers regarding his claim of a soldier's pension for service in the Civil War. The other folders relate to Moore's World War II service and include correspondence, a 1944 newspaper clipping from the Grand Forks Herald regarding Moore and his brothers and papers from Moore's attendance at naval flight training school, including a composition book, a completed exam sheet, a flight manual and several manuals and text books on aviation. Moore also donated his scrapbook, which contains newspaper clippings relating to his military service.
Nine photographs were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. These include one photo of Henry Wheeler, a veteran from Grand Forks, taken circa 1944 (#1278-69) and one photo of James Trepanier, taken circa 1951 (#1278-70). Trepanier was a veteran of World War II and Korea who was killed during the Korean Conflict. Other photographs include one of Ambrose Goodbout (circa 1900) (#1278-77), one of an antiaircraft gun crew taken in 1945 in Germany [includes James Devaney of Grand Forks] (#1278-75), one of Moore and his classmates in naval aviation school (circa 1944) (#1278-76), and three 1942 photographs taken aboard the U.S.S. Altamaha, an aircraft carrier (#1278-72 - 1278-74) and a 1942 photo of the Navy Mothers Club of Grand Forks (#1278-71).
- Box 3
- Folder 1: Ambrose Goodbout - Genealogical Information, 1865-1917
- Folder 2: Papers, 1943-1944
- Folder 3: Correspondence, 1944
- Folder 4: Composition Book, not dated
- Folder 5: Naval Flight Training Manuals, 1943
- Folder 6: Naval Flight Training Manuals, 1943 (cont.)
- Folder 7: Air Navigation Manuals, 1943
- Folder 8: Air Navigation Manuals, 1943 (cont.)
- Folder 9: Pictorial Manual, 1942
- Folder 10: "Operation of Aircraft Engines," 1943
- Folder 11: Recognition Sketching Manual, 1944
- Folder 12: Naval Pilot Training Booklets, 1943
- Folder 13: Booklets on Weather and Aviation, 1951, 1955
- Folder 14: University of Arizona, Ground Instruction Course Manual, 1943
- Folder 15: Aircraft S.E.5A - List of Drawings of Aircraft Parts, circa 1943-1944
- Folder 16: "Elementary French Grammar for Beginners," 1942
- Folder 17: "Maptalk," 1945
- Box 4
- Sub-Series 13: Edwin Rupp
- Edwin Rupp was a graduate of UND, and played football with Carleton Elliott Simensen. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1941. In October of that year, he reached Pearl Harbor, but his ship, the U.S.S. Tennessee, was at sea. He thus reported to the U.S.S. Arizona and was reunited with Simensen, who was the Officer of the Deck on that day. Rupp was in Pearl Harbor, on the Tennessee, when the Japanese attacked on December 7, 1941. After the attack, Rupp was transferred to the U.S.S. Doyle DD494, which was assigned to convoy duty in the North Atlantic. Rupp was present at the invasions of Normandy and Southern France. He was discharged from the Navy in 1947 with the rank of Lieutenant Commander. Rupp contributed one folder of materials describing his experience at the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. (Accession # 93-1908)
- Sub-Series 14: Eugene V. Schwartz
Eugene Schwartz of Grafton, North Dakota, served in the U.S. Navy on the U.S.S. Arizona. Materials donated by Schwartz include a pamphlet on the Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor (circa 1969-1979), a booklet entitled "Crossing the Line - U.S.S. Arizona, July 1940," [circa 1940] which describes a "crossing the Equator" ceremony aboard the U.S.S. Arizona, and a newspaper clipping circa 1940 describing the commissioning exercises of the U.S.S. Hornet. (Accession # 94-1954)
One photograph of the U.S.S. Hornet was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (#1278-68).
- Sub-Series 15: Agnes Shurr
- Video tape of a speech given by Agnes Shurr in Grand Forks to the Daughters of the American Revolution. Shurr was a nurse in the United States Navy during World War II. In the speech, Shurr recalls her experiences at Pearl Harbor and serving on a hospital ship in the South Pacific in 1941-1942. Separated and placed with Special Collections videotapes (# V 846). Donated by Beverly Jensen of Drayton, North Dakota (Accession # 94-1967).
- Sub-Series 16: George Vaughan
- George Vaughan was a UND classmate of Carleton Elliott Simensen. Vaughan also joined the Marine Corps and saw combat in World War II. Materials donated by Vaughan consist of a letter describing his friendship with Simensen at UND and his early days in the Marine Corps.
- Sub-Series 17: Robert Wasson
- Robert C. Wasson served in the Pacific Theatre of World War II as member of Headquarters Company, 350th Infantry, 88th Division. Wasson began his service at Fort Snelling, Minnesota, on April 1, 1942. His primary assignment was as a Personnel Officer, and some of his tasks included censoring mail, tutoring soldiers in the division, monitoring the motor pool and establishing camping areas. Wasson saw action in the October 1944 invasion of the Leyte Gulf, Philippine Islands. At this time, he also took on some intelligence and security responsibilities. He was involved in several other campaigns in the Pacific, including Okinawa, before the Japanese surrender on August 15, 1945. Wasson was sent back to the United States in late 1945, because a skin ailment he had obtained was thought to be cancerous. He eventually separated from the military in January 1946, from Camp McCoy, Wisconsin. The materials were transferred from the Al Austin Papers (Acc.#97-2167).
- Sub-Series 18: IX Corps Grenade
Japanese pictorial, Kathryn (Kay) Lawrence of Grand Forks, North Dakota, was the first woman to graduate from the University of North Dakota's Flight Training Program in 1942. After graduation she worked for Boeing Aircraft Company before joining the Women Auxiliary Ferrying Service (WAFS) in July 1943. On August 4, 1943, while flying a PT-19, Lawrence's plane crashed near Sweetwater, Texas, causing her untimely death. Seventeen days after her death the WAFS and the Women’s Flight Training Detachment (WFTD) merged to form the Women Air force Service Program (WASP) on August 21, 1943.
The material consists of an 8x10 photograph of Kay Lawrence deposited by Marcy (Gilbertson) Schoenecker, Denver, Colorado, on April 20, 2005 (Acc. #2005-2767). Also within the collection are photocopies from the Dacotah annual, Alumni Review, and information pulled from the World Wide Web, all of which were deposited by Special Collections staff.
- Series 7: WW II Europe and North Africa
WW II was a global conflict that was underway by 1939 and ended in 1945. It involved most of the world's nation, including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. It was the most widespread war in history, with more than 100 million people serving in military units. In a state of "total war", the major participants placed their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities at the service of the war effort, erasing the distinction between civilian and military resources. Marked by significant events involving the mass death of civilians, including the Holocaust and the only use of nuclear weapons in warfare, it resulted in 50 million to over 70 million fatalities. These deaths make the war the deadliest conflict in human history.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to the European and North African fronts in WW II.
- Sub-Series 1: Lynn Aas
Lynn W. Aas was born June 4, 1921, in Benedict, North Dakota. He entered UND in the fall of 1941, several months prior to U.S. entry into World War II. Aas entered the United States Army on March 22, 1943, and fought in the European Theatre with the 193rd Airborne Infantry, 17th Airborne Division. He separated from the service on November 1, 1945. He returned to UND following his discharge, and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce in 1948.
This material consists of Aas' recollections of the Battle of the Bulge as printed in the Minot Daily News on December 11, 1994. Also included are two oral history audio-cassette tapes, which consist of Aas' memories of the war. The tapes were recorded in 1995 and consist of two interviewers questioning Aas about the war. Each tape is two hours long. The material was donated by Lynn Aas (Acc.#97-2151).
Two audio-cassette tapes were separated and placed in the Audio Tape Collection. Lynn Aas WWII Memories #1 was given audio tape number 1894, while Lynn Aas WWII Memories #2 was given audio tape number 1895.
- Sub-Series 2: Leo E. Bell
Leo Bell contributed one folder of materials. This contains an essay that Bell wrote in 1989 entitled "George Alfred Bell, Jr.: His Story," in which he recalls his brother's experiences during World War II. George Alfred Bell served in the U.S. Navy on the destroyer U.S.S. Buck. He was killed when the ship was sunk near Salerno, Italy on October 9, 1943. Bell also contributed an article photocopied from an unnamed source. The article describes a 1944 submarine hunt for the German U-boat U-616.
Leo E. Bell donated one photograph, a portrait of his brother, George Alfred Bell, taken circa 1941. This was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (OGL #1278- 55).
- Sub-Series 3: Sig Benjaminson
Sigurdur “Sig” Benjaminson served in the 86th Chemical Mortar Battalion in World War II, which saw duty in the European Theatre of Operations. The papers consist mainly of correspondence between Sig and his wife, Gladys (Widme) Benjaminson. The couple was wed February 20, 1942, only two months before Sig entered the service. Gladys succeeded in finding employment at several of the bases where Sig was stationed before he was sent to England in May 1944. Sig's battalion arrived in France in July 1944, and saw action in France, Belgium, Germany and Czechoslovakia. Sig was discharged from the United States Army on October 3, 1945 and returned to Crystal, North Dakota.
Also included in the World War II correspondence are letters to Gladys from her sisters Emma and Clara, as well as from her nephews Marvin Gislason, Ardell Daley and Lloyd Widme. Gislason served in the 164th Infantry Regiment, while Daley served in the United States Marine Corp. Lloyd Widme was a member of the 53rd Armored Battalion. Other correspondence includes letters from Louis and Andrew Widme, older brothers of Gladys (Widme) Benjaminson, written during their service in World War I.
Also included are the 86th Chemical Mortar Battalion’s Battle History, personal papers and records regarding Sig’s military service and Gladys’ employment at several military bases where Sig was stationed, as well as other family records. Two scrapbooks kept by Gladys Benjaminson are also included. One of the scrapbooks, entitled "Album Camp Roberts, California" consists only of photographs, while the other, entitled "Camp Roberts," consists of newspaper clippings, correspondence and documents, in addition to photographs. Donated by Jim Benjaminson, Walhalla, ND (Acc.#96-2080).
Eight photographs and two scrapbook pages were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. They include: a 1942 photo of Sig Benjaminson in uniform (1278-102); an undated photo of Sig and Gladys Benjaminson (1278-103); a photo of Marvin and Lorraine Gislason (1278-104); photos of Ivan Gudjonson and Bjorn Hall, serviceman stationed at Camp Roberts, California in 1942, along with Sig (1278-105 to 1278-107); a photo of Louis Widme (seated) and Arthur Dahl (standing) in World War One (1278-108); a photo postcard of the Axdal Hotel in Cavalier, North Dakota (1278-109) and two unidentified and undated scrapbook pages with photos (1278-110 and 1278- 111). There is also a photocopied sheet that includes photos of Louis Widme, Bert McCloud, Andrew Widme and Pat Flanagan (1278-112) and a photocopied version of Louis Widme and Arthur Dahl (1278-108).
- Box 4
- Box 5
- Folder 1: Biographical Information
- Folder 2: Correspondence from Andrew Widme, 1917
- Folder 3: Correspondence to Gladys Widme, 1918-1920
- Folder 4: Correspondence to Andrew and Ellen Widme, 1929
- Folder 5: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, 1942
- Folder 6: Correspondence to Sig Benjaminson, 1942
- Folder 7: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, 1943
- Folder 8: Correspondence to Sig Benjaminson, 1943
- Folder 9: Correspondence to Gladys and Sig Benjaminson, 1943-1944
- Folder 10: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, January-August 1944
- Folder 11: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, September-December 1944
- Folder 12: Correspondence to Sig Benjaminson, 1944
- Folder 13: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, January-April 1945
- Folder 14: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, May-October 1945
- Folder 15: Correspondence to Sig Benjaminson, 1945
- Folder 16: Correspondence to Gladys Benjaminson, 1949
- Folder 17: Correspondence of Gladys Benjaminson, undated
- Folder 18: Personal Military Documents of Sig Benjaminson, 1940s
- Folder 19: Special Orders Number 174, 13 July 45
- Folder 20: The 86th Chemical Mortar Battalion Presents its Battle History
- Folder 21: Personal Documents of Gladys Benjaminson, 1942-1946
- Folder 22: 1943-44 Farmer's Tax Manual
- Folder 23: North Dakota Peace Officer, April 1987 (contains an article written by Jim Benjaminson)
- Folder 24: Paul Benjaminson Wedding Announcement
- Folder 25: Loose items from "Camp Roberts" scrapbook
- Folder 26: Envelopes
- Sub-Series 4: John D. Beringer
John D. Beringer was born on April 12, 1921, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He lived in several places in Wisconsin before settling in Sheboygan. Beringer graduated from Sheboygan High School in 1938 and attended a year of college at the University of Wisconsin. He worked as a salesman at a car dealership until he enlisted in the Army Air Corps in December 1941. He attended basic training at Jefferson Barracks, Missouri. After graduating from basic, he attended aircraft mechanics school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was a part of several different squadrons while serving in Washington, Arizona, South Dakota, and Florida. His stateside duties included kitchen patrol duty, guard duty, and working on aircraft. In August 1942, Beringer transferred from mechanic duty to clerk duty for the Group Headquarters, Intelligence section doing mechanical drawing work. He continued this line of work until 1944, when his squadron, the 340th Bomb Squadron, 97th Bomb Group, transferred overseas to the air base complex in Foggia, Italy. The air base provided extensive aerial operations for the 15th Air Force, but was not a zone of active combat while Beringer was there. He returned home in August 1945 after the defeat of Germany, and was on a troopship home when the war ended. He returned to Milwaukee after the war. In 1950 he moved to Texas, but returned to Milwaukee in 1964 and died in October, 1975.
The materials consist of photocopied documents including Beringer's enlistment form, recommendation letters, pictures, correspondence and telegrams, dated 1941 to 1945. The correspondence was from Beringer to his parents, as well as his brothers, William and Richard. In his letters, John Beringer discussed many things, including basic training and aircraft mechanic school, postings with the squadrons he was assigned to, and the nature of life on the home front. The documents also include a summary of the collection written by Richard Beringer. The material was donated by William Beringer of Atlanta, Georgia and Richard Beringer of Grand Forks, North Dakota, on April 29, 2006. (Acc. # 2006-2819)
- Sub-Series 5: Kevin Bonham
- In 1994, Kevin Bonham of the Grand Forks Herald solicited letters from readers who had been present at the allied invasion of Normandy fifty years earlier on June 6, 1944. This one folder accession (# 94-1959) contains the original correspondence that Bonham received in reply.
- Sub-Series 6: Jack Botts
Jack Botts was born on October 11, 1924 in Ludden, North Dakota. He entered the Army Air Force on June 4, 1943, upon graduation from high school. Until July of 1944, Botts was stationed at bases in Texas and Nebraska where he was transferred to Italy. On his missions, Botts bombed German controlled oil refineries and factories in Belgium, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Romania, France, Italy, and Poland. In January of 1945, Botts was sent back to the United States, where he served in Washington, Wisconsin, and Nevada before separating from the Army Air Force, at the rank of Technical Sergeant, October 17, 1945 in Great Falls, Montana.
Botts, a journalism professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Journalism, has also written two books, A Pocketful of Plums and Straight and Level. Straight and Level, a history of his time in Europe, uses the letters Botts wrote home during the war, providing accurate information on the life of a bomber pilot during World War II. These letters have been photocopied, and make up the majority of this collection. Also included is a detailed description of the missions Botts flew during 1944, also photocopied. Deposited by Jack Botts, Lincoln, Nebraska on February 12, 1997 (Acc. #97-2113).
- Box 6
- Folder 25: Letters from Botts to parents, 1943
- Folder 26: Letters from Botts to parents, July-August 1944
- Folder 27: Letters from Botts to parents, September-October 1944
- Folder 28: Letters from Botts to parents, November-December 1944
- Folder 29: Letters from Botts to parents, 1945
- Folder 30: Letters from Botts to parents, undated
- Folder 31: Letters from Botts to brother, 1944
- Folder 32: Record of Missions, 1944
- Folder 33: Miscellaneous: military cards, envelopes, newspaper article
- Sub-Series 6+: Ben Dregseth
Irving ‘Ben’ Dregseth was born on February 4, 1918 in Baltic, South Dakota, and afterwards moved to Nevis, Minnesota where he grew up and would later attend high school. Following his graduation from Nevis High School, Dregseth attended Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota until January 1941, when he was drafted into the United States Army.
Dregseth served with the 45th Infantry Division as a 1st Lieutenant, and participated in the Italian Campaign, battling against the enemy and the elements. In October of 1944, while serving in France, Dregseth was seriously wounded by artillery shrapnel and crawled down a hill until he was finally picked up by medics. He was later informed that if he had crawled down the same hill 15 minutes later he would not have survived. Dregseth returned to the United States on Christmas Day, 1944 and stayed with friends until he was able to return to Minnesota.
While Dregseth was considered a hero by many who fought with him, he did not receive his official medals until August 15, 2000—56 years after his tour of duty ended. He received the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Presidential Unit Emblem, the Meritorious Unit Emblem, the American Campaign Medal, the European-African- Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the Army of Occupation Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge and the Honorable Service Lapel Button. Dregseth passed away in Fargo, North Dakota on October 7, 2002.
This collection includes a 15 page autobiography Dregseth wrote during the summer of 2000, which discusses his military experiences during WWII, beginning with hearing the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. The autobiography channels his journey from Minnesota to various army bases before he was officially sent to the European and North African theater. Dregseth’s autobiography also includes a 2 page recollection of his ‘close calls’ that he experienced while he was in service. This particular addition to the autobiography was written at the suggestion of his family members. The collection also includes the photocopied article regarding Dregseth’s service awards as printed on August 15 2000 in the Fargo Forum. The final piece of the collection consists of Dregseth’s obituary and his funeral pamphlet.
This accession to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection was donated by Dr. Kim Porter, UND History Department on May 1, 2011. (Acc. #2012-3151)
- Sub-Series 7: Arnold J. Hagen
Arnold J. Hagen was born on March 14, 1906, in Grant County, Minnesota, to a father who had immigrated from Norway and a mother who was a first-generation American. In 1907, his family relocated from Minnesota to a farmstead near Cottonwood Late in northwestern North Dakota. He attended high school in Elbow Lake, Minnesota, and received his bachelor's degree from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota. He served as a teacher and superintendent for various communities in the Upper Midwest before entering the Army during World War II. Following the war, he returned home, married, and started a family. He reentered the profession of education, eventually earning a Doctor of Education degree from the University of Oregon in 1955. He thereafter joined the education faculty at Pacific Lutheran College. He died on October 20, 1985, in Tacoma, Washington.
Hagen's autobiography From There to Here: My Life consists of 401 pages of text, plus supporting documentation. The portion of the text covering the pre-war period of his life is written in traditional autobiographical narrative. The section covering the war-years, on the other hand, is for the most part transcribed directly from Hagen's personal diary and written in the present tense. The final portion, covering his life after the war, combines both forms of prose, although autobiographical narrative becomes predominant, particularly towards the end. For the sake of convenience, the manuscript has been divided among five folders. Folder 1 narrates the author's birth, early life, and college years. Folder 2 contains the story of his years after college, during which time he worked as a teacher and a school superintendent. At the outbreak of World War II, he entered the U.S. Army Air Force as an enlisted man, and kept a detailed diary of his experience. He offers vivid impressions of life in the Army, first in the United States, and later, after he was sent overseas, of England. The beginning of Folder 3 continues the account of life as an American soldier in Britain. By this time, Hagen was serving in the Army's Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC), in which capacity he was temporarily attached to the intelligence service of the Polish government-in-exile. During the Normandy invasion, he traveled to France with a unit of the CIC. Folder 4 picks up with the author serving in France, and he remained with the advancing Allied armies all the way into Germany. Following VE Day, Hagen was seconded to the first Allied taskforce bound for newly liberated Norway. Shortly following the end of the war, Hagen returned to the United States, received his discharge from the Army, and married. Folder 5 covers his life in the post-war period as a husband and father, how he returned to teaching, earned his doctorate, and finally went to work as a college professor. He rounds out his narrative with accounts of the trips he took with his family (including a rather extensive tour of Europe), as well as biographies of his children and their accomplishments in life.
The copy of this manuscript in the possession of the Elwyn B. Robinson Department of Special Collections is a print-out of an electronic version made available on-line by the Hagen family. Readers wishing to access the electronic copy and/or print a copy of their own can do so by visiting http://www.goosegardens.com/Arnold.html. The autobiography was printed out in August 2006 (Acc.#2006-2854).
- Sub-Series 8: German Helmet
- This World War II-era German helmet was deposited on May 17, 2007 , by Barry S. Brode of the University of North Dakota Television Center (Acc.#2007-2890). Mr. Brode inherited the helmet from his father, Jack Brode, who acquired it while serving with the U.S. Army Military Police in Italy shortly after the end of the Second World War. The helmet represents the distinctive German Stahlhelm style, with a “coal scuttle” shape that incorporates a front visor as well as a protruding slanted rim (“skirt”) that extends around the sides and rear of the head. The helmet's rolled edges and stamped ventilator holes suggest that it is a model M1940, with the designation “ET62” (stamped on the inside of the rim, about where the wearer's left ear would be) possibly denoting a sub-variant. The significance of the number “939” (engraved on the inside of the back rim) is unknown. On the left-hand side, it bears a single white Luftwaffe Adler (“Air Force Eagle”) decal, indicating that the wearer was a member of the German air force. The helmet appears to have been painted field gray at the time of manufacture, but later repainted dark green to provide better camouflage. The fact that it was acquired in Italy suggests that it originally belonged to a member of one of the Luftwaffe ground units that fought there, such as the Herman Goering Panzer Division, the Luftwaffe Field Division, or anti-aircraft artillery attached to the German army. *NOTE: Some of the Luftwaffe 's Fallschirmjäger (Paratroopers) also fought in Italy, but could not have been the source of the helmet since they wore a unique variant of the Stahlhelm that lacked the distinctive visor and rim.
- Sub-Series 9: Charles 'Bud' Jacobi
Charles "Bud" Jacobi was awarded two Bronze Star Medals, one for heroic achievement in action; a Silver Star Medal for gallantry in action; and two Purple Heart Medals, August 1944 and May 1945. Jacobi, who along with his daughter, Jane Kennelly, established the UND tennis court complex, donated the following photocopied materials: a short history of the 135th Infantry Regiment (First Minnesota), a unit citation for the 135th Infantry Regiment and letter of commendation for Jacobi, orders appointing Jacobi as First Lieutenant (June 18, 1946) and then Captain (July 18, 1946) of the 135th Infantry, a notice awarding Jacobi the Bronze Star Medal (1951), an Army pamphlet circa 1944-1945 entitled "Hospitals Are NOT Fun," a humorous essay entitled "Short Course to Rotation, or You Can Still Be a Gentlemen Even Tho' You Were in Anzio," Jacobi's Army immunization register and a sample of a "Safe Conduct" sheet carried by enemy soldiers wishing to surrender. (Accession # 94-1945)
One audio tape (Special Collections Audio Tape #1313) was separated from the collection. Also separated were some oversized photocopies of various materials, including documentation for his Bronze Star, Silver Star and Purple Heart Medals, photos of Italy circa 1943-1944 (with corresponding captions written by Jacobi), photos of German soldiers and American G.I.'s circa 1943-1945, photos of World War II Italian currency, Italian Christmas cards from 1944, a unit citation for Company E of the 135th Regiment, a letter from North Dakota governor John Moses to Jacobi's parents regarding Jacobi's awarding of the bronze star, German propaganda pamphlets and newspapers for German troops, American newspaper clippings and correspondence. These oversize materials were stored in OGL #1278 Oversize Folder #'s 6-7.
In December 2003, Jacobi gave the Department of Special Collections a copy of his World War II memoir, Bud Jacobi's World War II Story: The Italian Campaign. The book was placed in the North Dakota Book Collection.
- Sub-Series 10: John W. Kellogg
- During World War II, Lt. Col. John W. Kellogg served as a bombardier with the 460th Bomb Group, based at Spinazola, Italy. His plane was a B-24 Aircraft White "G" named the "Maxwell House." Kellogg donated a photocopy of the article "Good to the Last Drop," which was published in the Spring, 1971 issue of the International Liberator Club Briefing. The article was written by Kellogg and describes his experience on the Maxwell House's 21st combat mission on May 10, 1944. Kellogg wrote the article as a reserve member of the U.S. Air Force stationed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. He has lived in Minot, North Dakota since 1980 (Accession # 93-1906).
- Sub-Series 11: Bonnie Larson
- Bonnie Larson donated one folder of material. This consists of several Nazi propaganda photos, which include photos of Hitler and of various Nazi party rallies, and of World War II era currency from Australia and several European countries, including England, Germany, Belgium and France (Accession #94-2000).
- Sub-Series 12: Lester J. Lohse
- Now It Can Be Told: Air War in Tunisia, North Africa, World War II is a 37 page book written by Lester J. Lohse of Williston, North Dakota, in 1991. Lohse was born on September 23, 1918, in Alamo, North Dakota. He attended the Law School at the University of North Dakota during 1938-1939. He was accepted as an Army Air Corps Cadet in 1939 and graduated from flight school in 1940. He served in the U.S. Army Air Force in Tunisia, as Commanding Officer of the 92nd Fighter Squadron. Early in 1943, Lohse was severely injured when a jeep collided head on with the jeep he was driving. He was eventually sent back to the U.S. and separated from the service on July 16, 1946. He received the Silver Star and the Bronze Star for his service in Tunisia. In Now It Can Be Told, Lohse describes his combat experiences in Tunisia. Deposited by Lester J. Lohse, Williston, North Dakota, on 13 March 1997 (Acc.#97-2115).
- Sub-Series 13: Signe and Dwight Meier
This collection consists of materials regarding Norway during World War II. Included in the collection are: several issues of the News of Norway , published in Washington D.C. by the Royal Norwegian Governments Press, which dates from 1942-43 and two issues of the Norway Times from 1995, which discusses life in Norway 50 years after World War II. Also included are publications written in Norwegian that cover a variety of topics such as Norwegian students who died during the war, information on the King of Norway, and life during and after the war. Two editions of the Sjomannsbladet Signal and one edition of Var Folkekonge that contains information about Norwegian soldiers training in England. And lastly, one issue of Alle Kvinners covering the young prince of Norway, Harald V, returning to school after World War II.
The following books were added to the North Dakota Book Collection: Hjemmefrontens Guttegjeng by Jens Schulz, Slik Dor Menn by Dagfinn Hauge, and Contact by Oluf Reed Olsen.
These materials were deposited by Signe and Dwight Meier, Fargo, North Dakota, in September 2004 (Acc. #2005-2768).
- Box 8
- Folder 6: Alle Kvinners : 1945
- Folder 7: Before we go back, 1944
- Folder 8: Fra Aulaen Til Buchenwald : 1945
- Folder 9: Lille Norge Avisen: 1945
- Folder 10: News of Norway: 1942-1943
- Folder 11: Norway at War, Calendar: 1943
- Folder 12: Norway Times: 1995
- Folder 13: Pro Patria: 1945
- Folder 14: Publications relating to King Haakon VII: 1945
- Folder 15: Sjomannsbladet Signal: 1941-42
- Folder 16: Var Folkenkonge
- Sub-Series 14: Donald T. Nicklawsky
Donald T. Nicklawsky was born on May 18, 1916, in Hillsboro, North Dakota. He graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1938. During World War II, he enlisted in the United States Air Crops on August 31, 1942. During a January 29, 1944, air raid over Frankfurt, Nicklawsky’s plane, “Our Love,” was shot down. This happened on Nicklawsky’s second raid over German territory. He was captured by the Germans, and sent to Stalag Luft 1 near Barth, Germany. He was eventually liberated by the Allies in May 1945. Following the war, he worked for the Internal Revenue Service, was President of the North Dakota League of Savings and Loans Associations, and was Vice President of Northwestern Savings and Loan Association in Fargo. He was also a member of the North Dakota Banking Board. He died on June 19, 1987.
This collection mainly contains material related to Nicklawsky’s confinement at Stalag Luft I from 1944-1945. The files contain newspaper articles, correspondence, his diary, reports, and ephemera. The articles report of his capture by the Germans and rescue from P.O.W. camp Stalag Luft 1. The reports include German P.O.W. regulations and a report on American P.O.W. done by the Military Intelligence Service. Some of the ephemera include his German P.O.W. Identification Papers, his dog tags, and Prisoner of War Service Medal.
Also included in this collection are 84 photographs from Stalag Luft 1. The vast majority of the photographs are undated and unidentified; they have been kept in the same order they were found. The photographs depict scenes from the camp, including buildings, people, and special events such as plays, Thanksgiving and Christmas. The photographs are numbered from 1278-453 to 1278-537. Also included is a book, Welcome to POW Camp, a cartoon representation of life at Stalag Luft 1. The book was placed in the Rare Book Collection.
Donated by Lisa Foss (Nicklawsky’s daughter), Flagstaff, Arizona, on July 11, 2006 (Acc.#2006-2860).
- Box 8
- Box 9
- Folder 1: Dog Tags
- Folder 2: Ex-POW Bulletin, 1981-1987 (Note: V.38, No.6, p.25; V.43, No.5, p.34; V.44, No.1, p.28)
- Folder 3: Felt Wings Patch
- Folder 4: German POW Identification Papers
- Folder 5: German POW Regulations, 1941-1942
- Folder 6: Honorable Discharge Papers, December 29, 1945
- Folder 7: Metal Wings Pin
- Folder 8: Military Intelligence Service – American Prisoners of War Report, 1944-1945
- Folder 9: Paper on World War II, probably written by Nicklawsky
- Folder 10: Prisoner of War Service Medal
- Sub-Series 11: War Department ID
- Sub-Series 15: Norwegian Relief Inc.
This material consists of a 1941 Norwegian Relief letter and 100 Norwegian Relief Seals. The seals were sold by Norwegian Relief, Inc. to assist Norway during the Nazi Occupation. The letter requests that the seals be used on Christmas cards, and that one dollar be donated for every 100 seals used. The seals are the Norwegian colors, red and blue. Their flag is in the background with “Help Norway” across the top and a young Norwegian girl in the center. The bottom of the seal states Norwegian Relief.
This material was donated by Char Brekke of Brekke Tours & Travel, Grand Forks, in Fall, 2009 (Acc. #2010-3059).
- Sub-Series 16: George Olson
George Olson served in World War II with the U.S. Army Air Corps 48th Fighter Squadron. He saw duty in England, North Africa and Italy. Olson donated three folders of materials. Photographs and some oversize materials were separated. Documents include Olson's contemporary descriptions of North Africa and Italy in 1943-1945, orders and rosters received by Olson from the U.S. Army and a folder of guide books on Rome, circa 1943-1945, some in English and some in Italian. (Accession # 94-1946)
Several photographs were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. These include many photos of Rome taken in 1944. (OGL #1278-10 to 1278-30, 1278-32 to1278-40, 1278-92 to 1278-101) Subject matter includes St. Peter's Basilica and the surrounding area, the Coliseum, the King Victor Emmanuel Monument, the bridge across the Tiber River and the Castle of St. Angelo. Olson and his friends appear in several of these photos. An additional photo depicts an airplane crash at the U.S. Naval Air Station in San Diego, California in 1942. (1278-31)
Oversize materials (OGL #1278 Oversize Folders #3-4) include a 1944 clipping from the Double Seven, the official newsletter of the 14th Fighter Group, a 1944 article from the Leader, the Official Newspaper of the Nonpartisan League, in which Olson describes threshing in Italy, a map of Rome from the American Red Cross, circa 1943.
- Box 2
- Oversize Folder 4: Newspaper Clippings Pertaining to George Olson
- Dates Associated: 1944
- Oversize Folder 3: Maps pertaining to Italian campaign
- American Red Cross Map of Rome, c. 1943
- Sub-Series 17: Shirley Pietron
- This one folder of material was deposited by Shirley Pietron of Grand Forks, North Dakota. Ms. Pietron donated an essay describing the wartime experiences of her brother, Harold Russell, who served with the United States Army Air Corps during World War II. Russell served in the 17th, 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions as a glider pilot. He saw combat in the European Theatre of Operations and was present at the Battle of the Bulge and the subsequent Ruhr Valley campaign (Acc. #93-1909).
- Sub-Series 18: Larry Schlasinger
Larry Schlasinger was born on December 5, 1922, in Streeter, North Dakota, to Russian Jewish immigrants Noah and Sarah Schlasinger. He was the youngest of five children, including one brother, Kenneth, and three sisters, Marcella, Ethel, and Florence. He attended public schools in Streeter and graduated from Streeter High School in 1939. He enrolled at the University of North Dakota in the Fall of 1939 as Journalism major.
He earned outstanding grades, won a marksman medal, and served as a writer/editor on the college newspaper, the Dakota Student. Schlasinger obtained membership in, and in 1942 became President of Sigma Delta Chi, a journalism honorary society, as well as Phi Beta Kappa. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in January 1943, and then enlisted in the U.S. Army during World War II.
Schlasinger underwent basic training at Camp Wheeler, Georgia, before entering a Specialized Training Program or STAR unit, at Rollins College near Orlando, Florida. In December 1943, he received additional Military Intelligence Training at Camp Ritchie, Maryland. His work was confidential so he could not disclose any details about his training or assignments.
In April 1944, he was shipped to England until June 21, 1944, when he arrived in France. He was attached to the 79th Infantry Division, Military Intelligence Team # 434 G-2. Schlasinger was wounded in the right chest by artillery shrapnel during the Battle of Cherbourg on June 25, 1944. He was immediately treated, and on July 4 was transferred the 158th General Hospital in England. He appeared to be recovering well and even prepared a summary for the improvement of intelligence specialist training, but on July 11 he suddenly and unexpectedly died from a pulmonary embolism caused by a blood clot. He was survived by his entire immediate family. He was awarded the Purple Heart and, posthumously, the Legion of Merit “for exceptional meritorious conduct." In 1947, his body was re-interned from England to the Minneapolis Jewish Cemetery in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The Larry Schlasinger letters date from 1932-1947, and are divided into ten folders containing a total of 300 letters arranged in basic chronological order. A folder of biographical material is also included. His letters while written as a high school student in Streeter described a well-adjusted youth who worked on the school newspaper. He also described his close knit family life. His letters to and from his siblings, as well as his parents, present a picture of Larry's experiences at the University of North Dakota. Schlasinger candidly described his views about his professors, study habits, and campus life. He and his sisters made frequent use of pet names, and the sisters provided very generous financial assistance.
His Army correspondence primarily dealt with everyday local and family affairs. His description of army life was positive, although he was unable to discuss specifics about his work as censorship was tight. According to Larry's Letters (pg. 299) such strict security was logical since Schlasinger's mission in France was to contact the French underground resistance during the Normandy invasion, just after June 6, 1944. Schlasinger expressed vexation with what he perceived as over protectiveness from his father in the fifth folder. He wrote that he wished "you'd (Mr. Schlasinger Sr.) stop imagining, anyway that your son is a baby” and could be a man. Mrs. Schlasinger wrote about family and local affairs. She discussed the traits of the baby twins of Florence and her husband, Sam. She also mentioned Ken's activities in the Army Air Force and various aspects of his social life. Trips and family gatherings were also discussed. Unlike her husband, Sarah Schlasinger did not write about any political or military aspects of the war.
Noah Schlasinger frequently mentioned war developments. He also expressed emotional displeasure with the attitudes of certain American leaders regarding the enemy. Most of his letters, however, dealt with common local or family dynamics. Both parents emphasized the importance of pictures. The siblings' letters were also pleasant in tone, and did not discuss the war in much detail. Even after Larry Schlasinger was hospitalized in England after receiving what proved to be a mortal wound, he wrote in the same pleasant tone. The ninth folder contains his last letters written two days before he died from a pulmonary embolism.
The family letters contained in the last folder portray intense grief and anger from Noah Schlasinger. He even wrote of seeking revenge against Nazi sympathizers; he previously had expressed sharp dislike for Gerald Nye and other American Hitler sympathizers. Ethel Schlasinger wrote a sobering response to her father's rhetoric which exhibited a profound theological, moral, and philosophic thesis. All of Larry's siblings expressed serious concern for the parents' adjustment after his death. Another interesting letter in folder 55 was Larry Schlasinger's moral rationale for enlisting in the Army in the war "against the authorities of a supposedly civilized country" who threatened humanity’s freedom.
The last folder also contains the Army telegrams notifying the family of both Larry's wound and subsequent death. In response to a request from Florence (Schlasinger) Sigal, an Army physician described the exact cause of death in an additional letter. Also contained in this folder are letters written to Schlasinger before the family learned of his death. Correspondence between the Schlasinger family and the University of North Dakota regarding the "Larry Schlasinger Award” are also included. A note in the last folder mentioned that Larry's picture would be included in the University of North Dakota Alumni Hall of Fame.
The letters were deposited in the Orin G. Libby Manuscript Collections by Regina M. Anavy of San Francisco, California in May and June 2003 (Acc. #2003-2661). She is the daughter of Larry Schlasinger’s sister, Florence Schlasinger and her husband, Samuel Sigal. She published many of these letters in a book, Larry’s Letters: The Personal Correspondence of Larry Schlasinger. A copy of this book was separated and added to the North Dakota Book Collection. The folders were kept in the original order and division as they were received.
- Box 6
- Folder 46: Biographical Material
- Folder 47: Correspondence, high school years: 1932-1939
- Folder 48: Correspondence, UND years: 1931-1943
- Folder 49: Correspondence from Florence (sister): 1937-1943
- Folder 50: Correspondence from Marcella (sister): 1939-1943
- Folder 51: Correspondence from parents: 1943-1944
- Folder 52: Correspondence from Ethel (sister): 1943
- Folder 53: Correspondence from Ken: 1943-1944
- Folder 54: Correspondence from Larry (basic training): Summer 1943
- Folder 55: Correspondence from Larry (advanced training): November 1943 - April 1944
- Folder 56: Correspondence from Larry (England and France): April 1944 - July 9, 1944
- Folder 57: Correspondence (Posthumous documents and letters): July 1944 - 1947
- Sub-Series 19: Gene Sibell
- Gene Sibell donated one folder of materials that he obtained from his grandfather, Ernest Sibell. These include two photos depicting victims of the Nazi concentration camp at Buchenwald, Germany and one photo of a monument to Buchenwald victims erected by U.S. Army Engineers. All three photos were taken circa 1945 by Elmer Undlin of the U.S. Army. Accompanying the photos is a letter (dated May 17, 1945) from Captain Undlin to Paul Kinney, a newspaper reporter in Osakis, Minnesota. In the letter, Undlin expresses his belief that the pictures should be viewed by the public despite their graphic nature. Undlin mentions being present at the liberation of Buchenwald and describes the piles of corpses that he saw there.
- Sub-Series 20: Edwin M. Tofte
Edwin M. Tofte served in the United States Army during World War II. On July 26, 1944 he was a technical sergeant on an airborne mission. His plane was intercepted by enemy aircraft and Tofte and the other passengers were forced to bail out. Tofte was captured by five German soldiers near Vienna, Austria and sent to a German prisoner of war camp. The camp was liberated by Russian soldiers in May, 1945, and Tofte was flown to France and then home.
Tofte donated one folder of material consisting of newspaper clippings describing his capture and experience as a prisoner of war. (Acc. # 94-1950)
Further information on Edwin Tofte's experiences as a prisoner of war, including his written answers to an oral history interview, can be found in the North Dakota Prisoner of War Reports (OGL # 786)
- Sub-Series 21: Lt. Col. Paul Thompson
Modern Battle was distributed to United States soldiers during World War II to inform them about the events that led to the involvement of the United States in the war. The book was intended to give a detailed account of German warfare and the importance of military strategies and logistics in modern combat. It contains 253 pages of maps, diagrams, and accounts of battles during the beginning phases of World War II and was written by Lieutenant Colonel Paul W. Thompson, Corps of Engineers, in 1942.
Modern Battle was deposited by Jerry Bulisco, Associate Dean of Student Life, University of North Dakota, on September 9, 2004 (Acc. #2004-2714).
- Sub-Series 22: Tuskegee Airmen
The Tuskegee Airmen were African-Americans who served in the U.S. Army Air Force during the Second World War. Due to the racial segregation of the United States armed forces at that time, black servicemen were grouped in separate units, and no African-Americans were allowed to serve as pilots prior to 1941. As an all-black air combat unit successfully operating and maintaining complex aviation technology, the Tuskegee Airmen demonstrated that military competence was not a function of race, and helped pave the way for desegregation of the U.S. military in 1948. Organized as the 332nd Fighter Group, they fought in the North African and European theaters of operations, flying escort to American bombers and distinguishing themselves as one of the most effective fighter units of the war. The unit took its name from the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, where approximately 1000 of the 332nd’s pilot’s earned their wings between 1940 and 1946. In addition to aviators, the Airmen also included maintenance personnel, load crews, military police, and other support personnel – all of them African-American.
These documents relating to the history of the Tuskegee Airmen were deposited by 2d Lt Cory Kuehn, USAF, in May of 2007 (Acc. #2007-2889). Lt Kuehn, a graduate of the University of North Dakota, acquired these documents from the Air Force Historical Research Agency at Maxwell AFB, Alabama, while in the process of conducting his own research into the history of the 332nd Fighter Group. They consist of one roll of microfilm and two compact discs containing text files in PDF format. The microfilm (marked “A2284”) contains unit records dating to World War II, including (among other things) medical records, training reports, incident reports, pilot class data, and commander correspondence. The first of the two compact discs contains transcripts of a series of oral history interviews with veteran Tuskegee Airmen Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. (commander of the 332nd), Chappie James (America’s first black four-star General), Samuel Curtis, Chief Anderson, and Lucius Theus. The final item consists of another CD, this one containing a digitization of a historical study written by Alan M. Osur entitled Blacks in the Army Air Forces During World War II: The Problem of Race Relations (Washington, DC: U.S. Air Force, Office of Air Force History, 1986.
- Sub-Series 23: Bill Webster
Nine photographs were deposited by Bill Webster of Fargo, North Dakota, on 20 November 2008 (Acc. #2010-3012). According to the depositor, the photographs were given to the Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch in Fargo several years prior. No records exist for that donation.
In addition, an autograph book belonging to William L. (Billy) Lindstrom of Sycamore, Illinois, accompanied the photographs. Lindstrom served as an aerial gunner on a B-24 Liberator in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Therefore, it is unlikely that there is a connection between the autograph book and the photographs. The autograph book was de-accessioned in December, 2010, and given to the Joiner History Room in the Sycamore Public Library.
Although none of the nine photographs were labeled, they were obviously of a liberated concentration camp. Further research indicated they were from the Buchenwald camp, which was liberated 11 April 1945 by soldiers of Patton’s Third Army. The website of the Center for Holocaust & Genocide Studies at the University of Minnesota (http://www.chgs.umn.edu/histories/minnesotans/buchenwald/f.html) states that copies of such photographs were distributed to those participating either in liberating or dismantling the camps.
- Series 8: WW II Home-Front
- Sub-Series 1: Arthur Grant Anderson
- Arthur Grant Anderson was raised in Binford, North Dakota and graduated from the University of North Dakota in 1938. During World War II, he served as a radio-telephoto operator in the U.S. Army Signal Corps and then in the Pentagon. The one folder of materials contributed by Anderson contains a written recollection of these experiences, entitled "First Color News Photo Transmitted by Radio: The Potsdam Conference and Other Radio telephoto Experiences." As the title notes, the narrative's main focus is Anderson's description of receiving the first color news photo to be transmitted by radio telephoto, which Anderson had received in the Pentagon on July 26, 1945. The photo featured President Harry Truman, British Prime Minister Clement Atlee and Soviet Generalissimo Josef Stalin taken at the Potsdam Conference. Anderson also explains the process of sending a photograph by radio transmitter, its history during the war and some of his other experiences as a radio telephoto operator during other events of the war, including the D-Day invasion and Japanese surrender on the U.S.S. Missouri.
- Sub-Series 2: Edna M. Boardman
Edna M. Boardman donated one folder of materials in which she describes her experiences during World War II. This includes a photocopy of her article, "Winning World War II: How a North Dakota Farm Child Did Her Part for the War Effort," which appeared in the March 1992 issue of Heritage Review. Boardman was six when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor in 1941. She and her family were Mennonite Germans from Russia. Boardman provides a view of the North Dakota home-front during World War II. She describes problems with labor, clothing and food shortages, community feelings of patriotism and the problems of being German and Mennonite (a pacifistic religion) during the war. Boardman also contributed a short essay in which she recalls the problems of a German Canadian relative living in Canada during the war. (Accession #93-1905)
One portrait of Edna Boardman was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets (#1278-78).
- Sub-Series 3: Raymond Hall
Raymond S. Hall was born July 20, 1920 in Rawson, North Dakota. He fought in World War II as a member of the 164th Infantry Regiment. After the war, he graduated from UND with a Bachelor of Science in Commerce in January 1950.
The Raymond Hall Papers consist of editions of the Service Men's Herald, a supplement to the Williston Daily Herald. The Service Men's Herald was designed to provide news and information regarding soldiers from the Williston area serving in World War II. These updates included news of awards, address changes, death notices and funerals, as well as general columns regarding what the soldiers were doing and seeing. Also included are miscellaneous newspaper clippings dealing with the war, as well as several photocopied photographs. Donated by Randall Hall via Jim Fenelon (Acc. #2000-2425).
- Sub-Series 4: Home-front in North Dakota
- The North Dakota Humanities Council examined the home front in a January-February 2001 publication. Many aspects of the home front experience are examined, including the importance of victory gardens, civilian defense volunteers, war bonds, and the Red Cross. Also discussed are the Fort Lincoln Internment Camp, and the experiences of North Dakota soldiers overseas. The publication includes photographs and several depictions of war posters. Deposited by Sandy Slater, Department of Special Collections, in June 2001 (Acc. #2001-2518).
- Sub-Series 5: How to Teach an Employee
- How to Teach an Employee: A Wartime Training Program for Store Supervisors and Department Heads was a publication of the Federal Security Agency, U.S. Office of Education, Vocational Division. The publication was a training guide designed to assist supervisors in the training of workers called up for the war effort. It was hoped that better job instruction would improve wartime job performance and efficiency. There are two versions of this undated document. Also included are two pocket guides to How to Teach an Employee. These guides were designed for quick and easy retrieval, and summarize the highlights of the longer document. Deposited by Mary Hegle Drewes, UND Chester Fritz Library, May 2003 (Acc. #2003-2623).
- Sub-Series 6: Kathryn 'Kay' Lawrence
Kathryn (Kay) Lawrence of Grand Forks, North Dakota, was the first woman to graduate from the University of North Dakota’s Flight Training Program in 1942. After graduation she worked for Boeing Aircraft Company before joining the Women Auxiliary Ferrying Service (WAFS) in July 1943. On August 4, 1943, while flying a PT-19, Lawrence’s plane crashed near Sweetwater, Texas, causing her untimely death. Seventeen days after her death the WAFS and the Women’s Flight Training Detachment (WFTD) merged to form the Women Air force Service Program (WASP) on August 21, 1943.
The material consists of an 8x10 photograph of Kay Lawrence deposited by Marcy (Gilbertson) Schoenecker, Denver, Colorado, on April 20, 2005 (Acc. #2005-2767). Also within the collection are photocopies from the Dacotah annual, Alumni Review, and information pulled from the World Wide Web, all of which were deposited by Special Collections staff.
- Sub-Series 7: Delcie D. Light
Delcie D. Light graduated from North Dakota State University in 1961 and earned a master's degree from the University of North Dakota in 1983. She currently teaches English at Devil's Lake High School. Light donated one folder of material consisting of her essay, "Red Sky at Morning, Sailor Take Warning," which won an Honorable Mention at the 1991 North Dakota State Fair. She has won other prizes at the North Dakota State Fair and awards at the national level from the National Education Association and the American Chiropractic Association (for her article, Parental Alcoholism.") "Red Sky at Morning, Sailor Take Warning" describes her experiences as a little girl during World War II and her impressions of the war at that age. She concludes the essay by discussing the then recent Persian Gulf War and explaining how her views on war have changed since World War II (Acc. # 93-1897).
An East Asian Silk Brocade Jacket was given to the Chester Fritz Library by Delcie D. Light of Devils Lake, North Dakota, on June 28, 2002 (Acc. #2003-2598). The jacket originally belonged to her aunt, Violet (Cotton) Helmsworth. The jacket was originally a gift to Violet from her husband, Louis W. Helmsworth. Louis Helmsworth served in the United States Navy in the Pacific Theatre during World War II. Both Violet and Louis were originally from Mandan, North Dakota. Following the war, Louis Helmsworth worked for many years as manufacturing engineer for the Hughes Aircraft Company. He died on November 16, 1992, in Madera, California.
- Sub-Series 8: N. Manuel Lillehaugen
- N. Manuel Lillehaugen donated one folder of material. This consists of a greeting card mailed to him in 1943 when he was a Sergeant in the United States Army. The card is entitled "Some Swell Advice to a Guy in the Service" and is of a humorous nature. The card is signed "The Carlsens" and a message from Olga Carlsen is written inside (Acc. # 93-1922).
- Sub-Series 9: Pearl Harbor Special, Grand Forks Herald
- Remembering Pearl Harbor was a special section in the Grand Forks Herald dated December 7, 1991. Within the section are articles on soldiers that were present at Pearl Harbor, both American and Japanese, President Franklin Roosevelt’s Day of Infamy speech, and an article in which Herald readers wrote in about where they were when they heard about the bombings. Also included is an article that appears on the front page of the Herald on what people in Grand Forks and Hawaii were doing prior to and after the bombings at Pearl Harbor. The Pearl Harbor Special, Grand Forks Herald was deposited by Special Collections staff (Acc. #2005-2766).
- Sub-Series 10: Virgil Oxley
Virgil E. Oxley was born October 6, 1902 in Maxwell, Iowa. He entered the army as a resident of Sargent County, North Dakota with the rank of Staff Sargent in 1932. He served throughout the New York/New Jersey area with HQ Co. of the 16th Infantry, until he was transferred to Panama in the spring of 1941. He separated from the army on October 23, 1948. Virgil Oxley died March 10, 1989.
Enclosed in this collection are letters Virgil wrote home to his wife, a Cogswell, North Dakota resident, while serving in the army from 1939-1941. The letters provide a revealing account of the daily regimen of a soldier during the period before United States entry into World War II, while also depicting the feelings and emotions of having to leave loved ones behind. Also included are two newspaper clippings, a pressed 4-leaf clover and several Aposition cards, which appear to have been used in Army training exercises. Purchased from Charles Apfelbaum (Rare Manuscripts and Archives dealer), Watchung, New Jersey, August 12, 1997 (Acc. #97-2157).
- Box 6
- Folder 18: Letters from Oxley to his wife: 1939
- Folder 19: Letters from Oxley to his wife: 1940
- Folder 20: Letters from Oxley to his wife: 1941
- Folder 21: Letters to Mrs. Oxley, 1940: undated
- Folder 22: Unidentified letters
- Folder 23: Position cards: 1941
- Folder 24: Miscellaneous: 2 newspaper clippings, pressed 4-leaf clover
- Sub-Series 11: Bill Shemorry
Bill Shemorry of Williston, North Dakota served as a photographer in the United States Army Signal Corps during World War II. He was assigned to cover the Chinese Theatre of Operations in mainland China. Shemorry donated six folders of materials to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection.
The first folder contains "The Adventures of Private Bill, 1943-1946." This is a compilation of photocopied clippings from Shemorry's column, "The Adventures of Private Bill," which appeared in the Williams County Farmers Press from 1943-1946. In this column, Shemorry detailed his wartime exploits as a photographer for local North Dakota readers. (Accession #94-1995)
The second and third folders contain "The Way It Was 50 Years or So Ago, During World War II." This is a compilation of articles written by Shemorry for the Williston Herald, in 1994 and 1995. In the articles, Shemorry reflects on World War II and the experiences of those who fought in it. Articles often focus specifically on area veterans, and Shemorry relied heavily on oral histories for his material.
The fourth folder contains Shemorry's book, "D-Day ... The Way It Was." The book is divided into three sections. The first is entitled "D-Day, 1944 ... The Story of `Overlord,' The Attack on Nazi Europe." In this section, Shemorry provides some background information on the allied invasion of the Normandy and describes the planning process for Operation Overlord. Segment Two is entitled "The Assault on Normandy." Here, Shemorry gives an account of the invasion itself. Segment Three is entitled "D-Day ... The Way It Was: First Person Vignettes by and of the Men, and a Few Women, Who Were There." In this section, Shemorry reprints accounts from the Service Men's Herald, an auxiliary publication of the Williston Herald from 1943-1945. The Service Men's Herald printed letters, photos and first person accounts from G.I.'s., as well as press releases from the Office of War Information.
The fifth folder contains Shemorry's booklet, "As World War II Ended, G.I.s in Liuchow, China Prepared for a Skirmish." In this booklet, Shemorry recounts the experiences of himself and two other G.I.'s in the 164th Signal Corps Company, who were stationed in Liuchow, China in August, 1945.
The final folder contains two miscellaneous newspaper clippings. One is an obituary of Martin S. Hovde, a fellow Williston World War II veteran. The second is an article on Ruth Guttromson, another Williston resident, who served as a semper paratus, or SPAR, with the U.S. Coast Guard for 2 1/4 years in World War II (Acc. #94-1995).
Several oversize materials were separated and stored in OGL #1278 Oversize Folder # 8. These materials include one 1945 front page from the India-Burma Theater Roundup, a newspaper for American troops in the India-Burma Theater, a reproduction of the front page of the Williston Herald dated August 14, 1945, and a compilation of contemporary newspaper clippings detailing the World War II experiences of the 8th Army, 10th Mountain Division, 8th Infantry Regiment, the regiment in which Martin S. Hovde of Williston, N.D. served.
- Box 2
- Folder 52: "Soldier's Diary Tells Company E's World War I Story,": circa 1994]
- Folder 53: "The Adventures of Private Bill, 1943-1946": circa 1994
- Folder 54: "The Way It Was 50 Years Ago, or So, During World War II: circa 1994
- Folder 55: "The Way It Was 50 Years Ago, or So, During World War II, Part II,": circa 1994
- Folder 56: "D-Day ... The Way it Was": circa 1994
- Folder 57: "As World War II Ended, G.I.'s in Liuchow, China Prepared for a Skirmish,”: circa 1994
- Folder 58: Clippings: 1994
- Oversize Folder 8: Articles Pertaining to Bill Shemorry
"Cpl. Martin S. Houde, Williston, ND"
8th Army 10th Mountain Division, 8th Infantry Regiment, Kiska-Italy, WWII, dated 1943-1945
Newspaper Clippings, 1945,1985
- Sub-Series 12: Michael Unsworth
- Michael Unsworth delivered the dedication speech for the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection. This collection of materials consists of Unsworth's curriculum vitae, de-classified balloon bomb incident reports (photocopied from the National Archives), newspaper and personal accounts of the balloon bombs in North Dakota, copies of two journal articles written by Unsworth regarding the balloon bomb campaign and correspondence between Unsworth and the Department of Special Collections regarding the Simensen dedication. The materials were added to the Military Heritage Collection by Dean Yates in December 1997 (Acc. #97-2169).
- Box 6
- Folder 7: Curriculum Vitae
- Folder 8: De-classified balloon bomb incident reports (photocopied from the National Archives): 1945
- Folder 9: Accounts of balloon bomb incidents in North Dakota: 1994
- Folder 10: Two journal articles, "Floating Vengeance: The World War II Japanese Balloon Attack on Colorado," Colorado Heritage, Autumn 1993 and "The Japanese Balloon Bomb Campaign in North Dakota," North Dakota History: Winter 1997
- Folder 11: Correspondence between Dean Yates (Assistant Archivist) and Unsworth regarding Unsworth's speech at the dedication of the Simensen Collection
- Sub-Series 13: Woody and Cassy's Journal
- Woody and Cassy's Journal: WWII and Other Dark Shadows, was written for Fall 2002 edition of Western Pennsylvania History by UND Professor of English James McKenzie. In the article, McKenzie traces the World War II experiences of his parents, Woody and Cassy McKenzie, as recorded in journals they kept from April 1942 - December 1943. The McKenzie’s lived in Monessen, Pennsylvania, and their diary recounts how the war influenced life on the "home front." Deposited by James McKenzie, UND Department of English, on January 6, 2003 (Acc. #2003-2592).
- Series 9: Korean War, 1950-1953
The Korean War was a war between the Republic of Korea (supported primarily by the U.S.) and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (supported by the People's Republic of China, with military and material aid from the USSR), and was primarily the result of the political division of Korea by an agreement of the victorious Allies at the conclusion of the Pacific War at the end of World War II. Following the surrender of the Empire of Japan in September of 1945, American administrators divided the peninsula along the 38th parallel, with U.S. military forces occupying the southern half and Soviet military forces occupying the northern half.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to The Korean War.
- Sub-Series 1: Grand Forks Herald: 'Forgotten War Remembered '
- In honor of Veteran's Day 2000, the Grand Forks Herald published a special section related to the Korean War. The section is eight pages in length, and contains twelve articles, as well as photographs and a timeline. Several of the articles follow the Korean War experiences of North Dakota veterans in depth, while others examine the war in general. Deposited by Sandy Slater, Department of Special Collections, in June 2001 (Acc.#2001-2518).
- Sub-Series 2: Naval Publication: 'The Keel'
- "The Keel" was a book published by the U.S. Naval Training Center in Great Lakes, Illinois. It is dated 1951 for Companies 365-366. It was designed to give new recruits an idea of what their training would encompass. Many pictures are included, as are descriptions of the types of training the recruits would undergo. Donated by John Bye, Institute for Regional Studies, North Dakota State University, in September 1997 (Acc.#97-2166).
- Sub-Series 3: Patrick D. O'Connell
Patrick D. O'Connell, the son of Norman and Orpha O'Connell, was born October 22, 1922 in Crookston, Minnesota. The O’Connell’s moved to Grand Forks, North Dakota when Patrick was five. Patrick O'Connell graduated from Grand Forks Central High School in 1940 and attended the University of North Dakota from 1940-1943. He returned to UND in 1947 to complete his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, which he received later that year.
From 1943-1946, O'Connell served in the U.S. Army. He was assigned to combat infantry - L Company, 34th Infantry Regiment, 24th Division, where he rose in rank from private to captain. This unit participated in the recapture of the Bataan Peninsula and Corregidor Island in the Philippines and received a Presidential Unit Citation for its role in this conflict. O'Connell himself received a purple heart with oak leaf cluster and a bronze star.
O'Connell returned to the army in 1951, following the outbreak of the Korean War. This time, he served in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as an Equipment Officer for the 802nd Engineering Aviation Battalion, which was assigned to build the K-13 airfield in South Korea.
Patrick O'Connell married Muriel M. Jenkins in 1951. Following his service in Korea, he worked as a home builder in California and Arizona. He is presently retired and lives in Scottsdale, Arizona. The O’Connell’s have two children and three grandchildren.
The majority of these papers are correspondence between Patrick O'Connell and his mother, Orpha B. (O'Connell) Dobmeir, who saved the letters in bundles wrapped in butcher twine.
Topics within the letters include Army basic training, UND's ROTC, Officers Candidate School (OCS), Air Cadet school at Washington State College in Pullman, WA, barracks life, troop train travel, ration coupons, dating, and family matters. Of special interest are references to Senators Langer and Nye, to whom Mrs. O'Connell had written requesting their assistance after her son's paperwork was lost and he was erroneously assigned to Engineer and then Infantry basic training units. She also reported to the senators, thefts of Army food that had been described to her in Patrick's letters. Letters between Mrs. O'Connell and Senator Langer may be found within the Langer Collection, OGL #19.
Letters from 1945 and 1946 describe the war in the Philippines, criticism of General Douglas MacArthur and the Army's use of "green" troops, the Atomic Bomb, the surrender of the Japanese, and occupation forces. Photocopies of Time, Yank, Pacific Stars & Stripes, as well as copies of newspapers from organizations with which O'Connell was associated, provide additional background information.
All correspondence has been arranged chronologically. This material was deposited into the Department of Special Collections by Pat O'Connell, Scottsdale, AZ, in February and March 1994 (Accession #'s 93-1903, 94-1940 and 94-1951).
Two photographs were separated and placed in the Orin G. Libby Photograph Collection. These include one photo of Patrick O'Connell holding his dog, Heather (OGL #1278-42) and one photo of Patrick O'Connell with his wife, children and grandchildren. Both photos were taken circa 1994. (OGL #1278-43) There is also one oversized folder of materials (OGL #1278 Oversize Folder #2), consisting of photocopied 1945 articles from the Grand Forks Herald and the Los Angeles Herald Express that describe the fighting in the Philippines, a list of 1947 UND graduates (including Patrick O'Connell), an article on O'Connell's graduation from officer candidate school and a list of North Dakota veterans who died in World War II.
- Box 1
- Folder 44: Correspondence, June, 1943
- Folder 45: Correspondence, July, 1943
- Folder 46: Correspondence, August, 1943
- Folder 47: Correspondence, September, 1943
- Folder 48: Correspondence, October, 1943
- Folder 49: Correspondence, November, 1943
- Folder 50: Correspondence, December, 1943
- Folder 51: Correspondence, January, 1944
- Folder 52: Correspondence, February, 1944
- Folder 53: Correspondence, March, 1944
- Folder 54: Correspondence, April, 1944
- Folder 55: Correspondence, May, 1944
- Folder 56: Correspondence, June, 1944
- Folder 57: Correspondence, July, 1944
- Folder 58: Correspondence, September, 1944
- Folder 59: Correspondence, October, 1944
- Folder 60: Correspondence, November, 1944
- Folder 61: Correspondence, December, 1944
- Folder 62: Correspondence, January, 1945
- Folder 63: Correspondence, February, 1945
- Folder 64: Correspondence, March, 1945
- Box 2
- Folder 1: Correspondence, March, 1945
- Folder 2: Correspondence, April, 1945
- Folder 3: Correspondence, May, 19454.
- Folder 4: Correspondence, June, 1945
- Folder 5: Correspondence, July, 1945
- Folder 6: Correspondence, August, 1945
- Folder 7: Correspondence, September, 1945
- Folder 8: Correspondence, October, 1945
- Folder 9: Correspondence, November, 1945
- Folder 10: Correspondence, December, 1945
- Folder 11: Correspondence, January, 1946
- Folder 12: Correspondence, February, 1946
- Folder 13: Correspondence, March, 1946
- Folder 14: Correspondence, February, 1951
- Folder 15: Correspondence, March, 1951
- Folder 16: Correspondence, April, 1951
- Folder 17: Correspondence, May, 1951
- Folder 18: Correspondence, June, 1951
- Folder 19: Correspondence, July, 1951
- Folder 20: Correspondence, August, 1951
- Folder 21: Correspondence, November, 1951
- Folder 22: Correspondence, December, 1951
- Folder 23: Correspondence, January, 1952
- Folder 24: Correspondence, February, 1952
- Folder 25: Correspondence, March, 1952
- Folder 26: Correspondence, April, 1952
- Folder 27: Correspondence, May, 1952
- Folder 28: Medals Earned, 1945
- Folder 29: Korean Handbook, circa 1950
- Folder 30: Time Magazine, Excerpts, January-February, 1945
- Folder 31: Biennial Report of Army Chief of Staff, July 1943-July 1945
- Oversize Folder 2: Newspaper Clips Pertaining to Patrick O'Connell
- Dates associated: 1945,1947,1952
- Oversize Folder 11: Pertains to Japanese Surrender
Photocopies of newspaper clippings and magazine articles published by "YANK: The Army Weekly"
- Sub-Series 4: Arthur Timboe
Colonel Arthur Clifford Timboe was born on January 21, 1907, in Devils Lake, North Dakota. He served the North Dakota National Guard from 1925 to 1941 when he was called to active duty in the United States Army on February 10. Timboe saw combat in World War II with the 164th Infantry, part of the famous Americal Division. He commanded the 2nd Battalion in the battle for Henderson Field, Guadalcanal, from October 24 to 26, 1942. Following World War II, Timboe served at the Army Ground General School in Fort Riley, Kansas, and Fifth Army Headquarters in Chicago. Colonel Timboe served the United States Army as a Public Information Officer of the Korean Communication Zone during the Korean War. He was stationed in Korea from December 1953 to April 1954 acting in this capacity with such astonishing efficiency that he eventually was awarded the Legion of Merit award, the second highest military award for meritorious service. He was awarded this medal for Exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding service as Public Information Officer of the United Nations Command Military Armistice Commission at Panmenjon and Munsan-ni.
Arthur and Catherine Timboe had three children: Gay, Mary Frances, and Arthur Richard. Colonel Arthur Clifford Timboe died on June 24, 1996, in San Francisco, California. He is buried in San Francisco National Cemetery.
The collection is primarily a visual one, consisting of over 270 photographs and 98 color slides. Paper records include official copies of the Armistice Agreement Vol. 1 and its Supplement. Both documents date from July 1953, and were made between the United Nations Command, the Supreme Commander of the Korean People’s Army, and the Commander of the Chinese Peoples Volunteers. The armistice ended the Korean War on July 27, 1953. Other documents in the collection include newspaper clippings, correspondence, and two maps.
One of the Public Information Offices main modes of communication during the Korean War was through photographs. This is reflected in the collection by the abundance of both official US Army photographs and impromptu snapshots. The collection begins with several individual portraits of Timboe, as well as other photographs of him posing with military personnel, as well as with Korean civilians and children. Several of the photographs with children were taken during Christmas, and depict Timboe distributing toys.
There are many photographs depicting the nature of day-to-day life in Korea. These include pictures of Korean children playing, as well as Korean civilians working in rice fields or at a local marketplace. Korean buildings and structures are also depicted, including a temple, government building, and several street scenes. On a somber note, some of these photographs depict a Korean Leper Colony.
Also included are photographs of military buildings and structures: barracks, tents, and officers homes to name a few. Military equipment, in the form of helicopters and tanks, are included as well. There are also official photographs depicting military recreational and business activities: ceremonies, marches, and special visits from dignitaries, including Vice-President Richard Nixon, and H. Alexander Smith, Republican Senator from New Jersey.
These are snapshots that show American soldiers in recreational settings: either gathering together showcasing game they’ve hunted or strolling through a military base. There are also several photographs of a special Christmas U.S.O. show with stateside entertainers who performed for the troops.
There are also many photographs of prisoners of war (POW). These include South Korean, North Korean, and Chinese prisoners. There are also photographs of Anti-Communist North Korean prisoners, who were fighting with the South Koreans. A significant number of the POW photographs depict prisoner exchanges between North Korea and the United Nations Command.
In addition, there is also one album of photographs from the Korean War. Many pictures in the album are duplicates of the other photographs in the collection. The material was deposited by Arthur Timboe's daughter, Mary Fran Riggs, Encitas, California, on March 20, 2001 (Acc. #2001-2510).
274 photographs were separated and added to the Photograph File Cabinets.
1278-167 to 1278-179
Individual Portraits of Timboe 1278-180 to 1278-191
Group Photographs Including Timboe 1278-192 to 1278-199
Timboe with Korean civilians 1278-201 to 1278-209, 309
Korean Leper Colony 1278-210 to 1278-220, 292
Korean Children 1278-221 to 1278-241
Korean civilians 1278-242 to 1278-251
Korean buildings 1278-252 to 1278-276
U.S. Military Buildings and Structures 1278-277 to 1278-294
Col. Timboe with Military Personnel or Dignitaries 1278-295 to 1278-308
Various U.S. Military 1278-310 to 1278-321
More U.S. Military: Dwellings, Tents, Streets 1278-322 to 1278-326
Col Timboe with U.S. Military Personnel/Official and Snapshots 1278-327 to 1278-354
Prisoners of War (POW): South Korean, North Korean, Anti- Communist North Korean, Chinese 1278-355 to 1278-369
U.S.-Korean Military Personnel/Dignitaries 1278-370 to 1278-381
Large Snapshot, Military Personnel/Dignitaries, Ike, Nixon, Armistice Commission 1278-382 to 1278-395
Military Vehicles-Helicopters 1278-396 to 1278-402
U.S.O. Christmas Show 1278-403 to 1278-412
Miscellaneous Military Personnel 1278-413 to 1278-418
Displaced Korean Civilians 1278-428 to 1278-433
Korean Cityscapes and Landscapes 1278-419 to 1278-441
Two maps were separated and placed in the Oversize File Cabinet in Oversize File #10: 1. Stars and Stripes Map of the War (undated, but of the Korean War) 2. U.S. Air Force Air Navigation Chart, Korea and Honshu: 1953
- Box 6
- Folder 58: Photocopy of Timboe’s Orders: November 1942
- Folder 59: Two Photocopied Letters from North Dakota Governor John Moses: 1942-1942
- Folder 60: Armistice Agreement Vol. 1: July 1953
- Folder 61: Supplement to Armistice Agreement: July 1953
- Folder 62: Timboe’s Orders: July 1953
- Folder 63: “The War in Korea” by Stars and Stripes: 1953
- Folder 64: Newspaper Clippings: 1947-1985
- Folder 65: Miscellaneous Cards and Invitations: 1954-1965
- Box 7
- Oversize Folder 10: Pertains to WWI and Korean War
World War 1 star flag-- c. 1917-1918
Korean War Maps, in color
- Series 10: Vietnam War, 1953-1975
Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955, to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of South Vietnam, supported by the United States of America and other anti-communist countries.
The following folders contain documents and photographs pertaining to the Vietnam War.
- Sub-Series 1: Anti-Vietnam Movement (UND)
- This material includes correspondence from faculty committees and student groups opposed to the war, as well as information about a silent peace vigil which took place in 1967 near the Memorial Union. Also included is material related to anti-war lectures and conferences, and a November 1969 statement from UND President George Starcher. Starcher pledged the support of the University in providing an atmosphere where "debate and expression of opinions" would not be curtailed. At the same time, he insisted that no one be compelled to participate in activities in which they did not want to participate. He also reported that instructors canceling classes in recognition of the Vietnam Moratorium, November 13 and 14, 1969, should arrange to have the class meeting made up. The material dates from 1967-1972, although a portion of it is undated. Deposited by Dean Bernard O'Kelly, Grand Forks, North Dakota, on 9 September 2000 (Acc.#2001-2517).
- Sub-Series 2: Hatton Veteran's Scrapbook
The Hatton Veteran's Scrapbook is a comprehensive anthology of information pertaining to military servicemen and women with ties to the community of Hatton, North Dakota. Compiled by Post Historian Ray Pladson, it was published on July 1, 2006, under the auspices of the Hatton American Legion Carroll O. Flesche Post # 70. The Scrapbook is composed primarily of photocopied newspaper articles dealing either with the progress of the war in general, or the activities of Hatton-area servicemen and women in particular. In addition, a number of certificates, personal photographs, and other forms of primary source documentation have also been included. Historical timelines for each war help readers locate the information they are looking at within the larger frame of events. Extensive tables arranging Hatton-area veterans of each war and/or period by name, date of birth, and branch of service are also included in each chapter.
The Hatton Veteran's Scrapbook was purchased from Ray Pladson, Post Historian, American Legion Carroll O. Flesche Post # 70, Hatton , North Dakota , on August 1, 2006 (Acc.#2006-2853).
- Sub-Series 3: David 'Doc' Johnson
David "Doc" Johnson of Williston, North Dakota served in Vietnam in 1967-68 with the Second Battalion First Marines. In 1993, Johnson completed a book entitled We Remember, which contained first person accounts and photos from men who served in the Second Battalion First Marines. Johnson wrote the book to preserve the history from Vietnam from the soldier's viewpoint, as opposed to that of government official. Johnson has also published a newsletter on the Second Battalion First Marines, issues of which are housed in the North Dakota room of the Department of Special Collections in the Chester Fritz Library of the University of North Dakota.
Johnson contributed one folder of materials to the Carleton Elliott Simensen Military Heritage Collection. Materials include one clipping from the Williston Herald regarding Johnson's completion of the book We Remember, a bumper sticker bearing the logo of the Second Battalion First Marines, an essay entitled "A Night in January," in which Johnson describes one of his experiences in Vietnam, and an essay that Steve Belden wrote in 1976 as a seventh grader. In the essay, Belden discusses his older brother Larry, who served in the Second Battalion First Marines and died in the Vietnam War.
- Sub-Series 4: 'Moving Wall' Vietnam Veteran's Memorial
- This material includes information regarding the "Moving Wall," a replica of the National Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.. The Moving Wall was designed in 1984 and tours the country, visiting sponsoring sites for about a week at a time. In June 1998, the Moving Wall visited Cavalier, North Dakota, sponsored by the American Legion Posts of Pembina County. The material includes a pamphlet regarding the visit of the Moving Wall and a tracing of Grand Forks resident Clifton Cushman's name on the wall. Also included is a listing of casualties from the following counties in North Dakota (Pembina, Cavalier, Ramsey, Walsh, Towner, Nelson Grand Forks) and Minnesota (Kittson, Roseau, Marshall, Red Lake, Pennington, and Polk). Deposited by Bob Garrett, Department of Special Collections, June 29, 1998 (Acc.#98-2206).
- Sub-Series 5: North Dakota in the Vietnam War
- This addition to the Simensen Military Heritage Collection consists of a list of U.S. military personnel from North Dakota listed as killed or missing in the Vietnam War. The list was printed in the July 2, 2000, edition of the Grand Forks Herald. Donated by Sandy Slater, Department of Special Collections, July 3, 2000 (Acc.#2000-2458).
- Series 11: Persian Gulf War, 1990-1991
- The Persian Gulf War, (codenamed Operation Desert Storm) commonly referred to as simply the Gulf War, was a war waged by a U.N.-authorized coalition force from 34 nations led by the United States, against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion and annexation of Kuwait.
- Sub-Series 1: Jo Ann Boardman
Jo Ann Boardman, from Leith, North Dakota, served in the 818th Medical Battalion during the 1991 Persian Gulf War. This material consists of newspaper clippings, programs, church bulletins and one letter kept by Boardman's mother-in- law, Edna Boardman. The materials were donated by Edna Boardman, Minot, North Dakota (Acc.#97-2164).
Twenty photographs were separated and housed in the Photograph File Cabinets. They show the progress of the flight onto the runway, the reunion and the celebratory program. Included are photos of Jo Ann Boardman, Edna Boardman, and Edith Zeller (her mother), in addition to photos of various other family members.
- Sub-Series 2: Nancy Harvey/ Thompson Public Schools
During the Persian Gulf War, teacher Nancy Harvey's fifth grade class in the Thompson Public School (Thompson, North Dakota) regularly corresponded with Second Lieutenant Davina French, a soldier from Tacoma, Washington stationed in the Persian Gulf. Following the war's conclusion, French came to Thompson and visited her pen pals.
This one folder of material, donated by Nancy Harvey, contains photocopied correspondence between Lt. French and the students in Ms. Harvey's class in 1990-1991. (Accession # 94-1944)
One video tape, depicting Lt. French's meeting with the Thompson fifth graders following the war, was separated.
- Sub-Series 3: Fran Kryszko
Fran Kryszko works in the Transportation Department of the University of North Dakota. His son Tom served in Saudi Arabia during the Persian Gulf War. Materials donated by Fran Kryszko include a letter to him from his son Tom written in Saudi Arabia on February 26, 1996. In the letter, Tom describes his experiences in Saudi Arabia, commenting on the climate, interactions with Saudi Arabians, planes flying overhead on bombing runs to Iraq and on the fact that no television and few radio stations could be received where he was stationed. (Accession # 93-1911)
One photo of Tom Kryszko in uniform, taken in 1991, was separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets. (#1278-41)
Browse by Series:
[Series 1: Carleton Elliott Simensen, 1919-1941],
[Series 2: Civil War, 1861-1865],
[Series 3: Spanish American War, 1898-1899],
[Series 4: WW I, 1914-1918],
[Series 5: Second Sino-Japanese War, 1937],
[Series 6: WW II Pacific Theater],
[Series 7: WW II Europe and North Africa],
[Series 8: WW II Home-Front],
[Series 9: Korean War, 1950-1953],
[Series 10: Vietnam War, 1953-1975],
[Series 11: Persian Gulf War, 1990-1991],