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World War II

William McKinley to His Wife
William McKinley to His Wife
Written from “His Office;” January 23, 1943
Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project
William McKinley to His Wife
Written from “His Office;” January 23, 1943

William McKinley to His Wife
Written from “His Office;” January 23, 1943

In 2000, several letters written by naval officer William McKinley were uncovered at a residential construction site and turned over to the Lemon Grove Historical Society in California. McKinley corresponded with his wife and young son Curtis from his distant, wartime posting. His primary concerns remained family and domestic matters. In this section, he listed priorities and principles by which he and his wife should bring up their son.

Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project

Excerpt
Photograph of boy
Photograph found with McKinley letters
Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project
Photograph found with McKinley letters

Photograph Found with McKinley Letters

Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project

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Letter from Robert Perz to His Wife Marion
Robert Perz to His Wife Marion
From Pasco, Washington; December 24, 1944
Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project
Robert Perz to His Wife Marion
From Pasco, Washington; December 24, 1944

Robert Perz to His Wife Marion
From Pasco, Washington; December 24, 1944

Robert Perz’s highly evocative letter captures the anguish of separation from spouse, family and home. The holiday and the uncertainty of his future make his sentiments especially poignant. In 1945, Seaman Perz went to serve aboard the U.S.S. Chenango, and happily returned to his family at the end of the Second World War. The letter was uncovered in a chest sold at an auction.

Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project

Excerpt

 

Robert Perz and his brother Raymond on the U.S.S. Chenango
Robert Perz (right) and his brother Raymond (left) on the U.S.S. Chenango, 1945
Courtesy of Robert Perz and family
Robert Perz (right) and his brother Raymond (left) on the
U.S.S. Chenango, 1945

Robert Perz (right) and His Brother Raymond on the U.S.S. Chenango, 1945.

Robert Perz (right) served as part of the arresting gear crew aboard the U.S.S. Chenango in 1945. His brother Raymond (left) served aboard a mail boat for the U.S. Navy at the same time. When their vessels met off Nakagusuku (Buckner) Bay, Okinawa, the two brothers documented their reunion with this photograph.

Courtesy of Robert Perz and family

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Letter from Joseph Patteeuw to Katherine Netting
Joseph “Pat” Patteeuw to Katherine Netting
From England; July 9, 1944
Courtesy of Conrad John Netting IV
Joseph “Pat” Patteeuw to Katherine Netting
From England; July 9, 1944

Joseph “Pat” Patteeuw to Katherine Netting
From England; July 9, 1944

After the War Department reported that her husband, Second Lieutenant Conrad J. Netting III, was missing in action, Katherine Netting received information from one of his closest comrades in the 4th Fighter Group. Joseph “Pat” Patteeuw felt obliged to help Katherine to accept her husband’s death, and wrote of Conrad’s airplane crash in no uncertain terms. In April 2005, the new owners of Katherine’s home came across a box of letters and returned them to the Netting family.

Courtesy of Conrad John Netting IV

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Second Lieutenant Conrad John Netting III
Second Lieutenant Conrad John Netting III
Courtesy of Conrad John Netting IV
Second Lieutenant Conrad John Netting III

Second Lieutenant Conrad John Netting III

Courtesy of Conrad John Netting IV

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Letter from Robert Easterbrook to His Parents
Robert Easterbrook to His Parents
From Yokohama, Japan; September 12, 1945
Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project
Robert Easterbrook to His Parents
From Yokohama, Japan; September 12,
1945

Robert Easterbrook to His Parents
From Yokohama, Japan; September 12, 1945

Purchased for less than a dollar at a yard sale, this artifact testifies to the significance of each war letter as a record of the individual’s role in historic events. U.S. Marine Corporal Robert Easterbrook reported on the medical treatment given to Hideki Tojo, ex-Premier of Japan. His duty to aid this patient filled him with both awe and conflict. Tojo survived his suicide attempt only to be tried, convicted, and executed for his war crimes.

Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project

Excerpt

 

Corporal Robert Easterbrook
Corporal Robert Easterbrook
Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project
Corporal Robert Easterbrook

Corporal Robert Easterbrook

Courtesy of Andrew Carroll / The Legacy Project

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A serviceman spends time with correspondence, World War II
A serviceman spends time with correspondence, World War II.
Courtesy of the National Archives
A serviceman spends time with correspondence, World War II.
Courtesy of the National Archives