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James Leonard Sturgeon collection, 1900-1967 (majority within 1900-1920)

0.25 linear feet

This collection is made up of correspondence, military documents, photographs, and other items related to James Leonard Sturgeon's service in the Royal Air Force in Canada during World War I. The collection also contains family photographs from 1900-1933.

This collection (0.25 linear feet) is made up of correspondence, military documents, photographs, and other items related to James Leonard Sturgeon's service in the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force during World War I. The collection also contains family photographs from 1900-1933.

The Correspondence series contains 15 letters and letter fragments that Sturgeon wrote to his family between March 1918 and November 1918. Sturgeon, who signed his letters "Leonard," wrote 2 letters while traveling from California to Canada in the spring of 1918. He wrote the remaining letters while serving in the Royal Flying Corps (later the Royal Air Force) in Long Branch and Deseronto, Ontario, describing his experiences during training flights and airmen's duties. Several letters from late 1918 pertain to his stay at a base hospital and to the influenza epidemic, which led to a complete quarantine of his unit. In November 1918, he was stationed at Camp Rathbun, where he considered the possibility of remaining in the air force after the war. An undated letter written from Vancouver, British Columbia, mentions a physical examination at the Royal Flying Headquarters and wounded soldiers who had returned home.

The Military Papers series (8 items) concerns James L. Sturgeon's military service. These include a base pass, Sturgeon's official service record, a discharge certificate, and 2 items about his honorary appointment as second lieutenant. The series also includes King George V's address to Royal Air Force members on Armistice Day. Two newspaper clippings relate to James L. Sturgeon's military service, including his spinal meningitis infection, and one concerns pioneers in Manitoba in 1881 and 1882. The final item is a membership card for The Aero Club of Canada.

The Photographs series contains over 160 photographs related to James Leonard Sturgeon's military service and to the Sturgeon family from 1900-1933. One group of photographs, including all of the military material, is housed in the Graphics division. The earliest photographs represent members of the Sturgeon family, including James Leonard Sturgeon and his siblings, as well as a festival that took place in Riverside, California, in 1900. Items pertaining to Sturgeon's military service in 1918 include photographs of Sturgeon, members of the Royal Flying Corps and Royal Air Force, crashed military airplanes, Long Branch Camp, and Camp Rathbun. Later photographs and undated items show Sturgeon among fellow Stanford University students, scenery from vacations in the western United States, and the Sturgeon family. One photograph is printed on a small metal plate.

The Soldiers and Sailors Book of Worship is the following volume: For Soldiers and Sailors: An Abridgement of the Book of Common Worship[,] Published for the National Service Commission of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America (1917).


Norma Greiner and William R. Kent collection, 1942-1945

0.5 linear feet

This collection is made up of the World War II-era correspondence of Norma Greiner, her husband William R. Kent, and the Greiner family. The papers include letters that Norma Greiner wrote to her family while serving as a United States Navy nurse in San Francisco, California, in 1943; letters that William R. Kent wrote to his wife Norma while serving onboard the USS Cape Esperance in the South Pacific from August 1944-November 1944; letters that the Greiner family received from various servicemen during the war; and letters that Norma Greiner Kent received from her mother- and sister-in-law.

This collection (79 items) contains the World War II-era correspondence of Norma Greiner of La Grande, Oregon; her husband, William R. Kent; and the Greiner family. One receipt pertains to a small payment from Mrs. R. C. Greiner to C. E. Branner (July 9, 1942).

Norma Greiner wrote 38 letters to her parents while working as a United States Navy nurse at Treasure Island, San Francisco, California, in 1943. She described her experiences treating wounded servicemen and sometimes provided details about specific patients. In one letter, she discussed a set of photographs shown to her by an officer returning from Guadalcanal (February 13, 1943, mailed with letter dated February 11, 1943), and in another, she described her wedding (August 3, 1943). Some letters refer to Greiner's dating life and several from late July and early August concern her marriage to William R. Kent. Her final letter, dated February 19, 1945, pertains to life in San Diego, California. Three of her letters have enclosures: a newspaper clipping about nurses (March 15, 1943), 4 snapshots of natives in an unidentified location (May 27, 1943), and bicycle licenses for Norma Grider [sic] and Wanda Tucker (June 4, 1942). One item is an illustrated printed form letter 2'8" long, including grains of sand glued to one page, that Norma sent to her brother Lawrence (March 27, 1943).

William R. Kent sent 26 letters to his wife Norma Greiner Kent while serving on the USS Cape Esperance in the South Pacific from August 1944-November 1944; these letters form part of a much larger series (not present). Kent discussed navy life, anticipated the birth of their first child, and counted down the days remaining in his enlistment. While stationed on an unidentified island, he described his health difficulties, including a sprained ankle and a diminished appetite, and responded to Norma's news of her hospital work and pregnancy. He mentioned his initiation as a "shell back" after crossing the Equator and encloses a humorous mock subpoena for a related ceremony (August 14-15, 1944). On October 19, 1944, Kent reflected on the death of a friend named Hallowell, enclosing his obituary. Other enclosures include letters and V-mail from the Kent family (September 20, 1944; September 29, 1944; and October 15, 1944); 3 snapshot photographs of an unidentified man with a dog and horse (September 14, 1944); a notice that his subscription to Parents' Magazine would soon expire (September 14, 1944); a cartoon (October 16, 1944); and a list of recommended Bible verses (November 19, 1944). Norma also received letters from her sister-in-law, "Jay" Kent, and from her mother-in-law, Helen Kent.

In addition to Norma's letters, the Greiner family received correspondence from William R. Kent (1 item, March 22, 1945) and other servicemen. Private Dale Greiner, a relative, wrote about his experiences while training with the United States Air Forces in Miami Beach, Florida, and Gulfport, Mississippi; David G. Weathers wrote twice of his love for Norma (April 4, 1943, and July 11, 1943); Norman E. Olson mentioned his participation in naval campaigns near the Philippines on the USS Heywood (February 27, 1945); and Private Chester J. Hoab discussed tank training at Fort Knox, Kentucky (ca. March 25, 1943). Private Bryce E. Miller wrote his letter of March 4, 1943, on stationery bearing printed images of military aircraft.