Normally, since today is Saturday, I would have written about another of my paternal family surnames. That had originally been my plan but on Thursday night I began searching through my boxes of family documents for my grandfather’s naval documents. I knew I had them. I had previously seen them, but I had forgotten where I stashed them. I finally found them again along with another family treasure, the bible belonging to my great Uncle Jim Foster.
My grandfather’s naval packet is about 2 inches thick. It contains pretty much every order he received including his initial enlistment papers. How I wish I knew where they were at Thanksgiving when I started my blog! I really could have started the story from the beginning, even before the letters started. It looks like I have another organizing project because of course none of the papers are in order! I’ve already started pulling the documents that apply to July and August 1942.
The other treasure is the bible. It was presented to Jim by his wife Thelma in 1931 when he became a Freemason. Over the years I have accumulated several bibles. I have one belonging to Christian Yegerlehner which is in German. I have my great grandmother Emma Foster’s as well. Neither one of them has any great genealogical information stashed away inside. They are more sentimental keepsakes. Uncle Jim’s bible on the other hand is a genealogical treasure trove. He apparently took it with him when he enlisted in 1942. The front pages are a combination autograph and address book in addition to being a diary of Jim’s years in the Navy. The first page of the diary begins, “This page for my naval history second enlistment, enlisted 5 March 1942 in Indianapolis, Ind. As SK2C, called to active duty 5 May 1942, reported to Naval recruiting station in Indianapolis and from there to Great Lakes Naval Training Station, North Chicago, Ill. Served from 5 to 25 May in “boot” camp. Got one 24 hour leave on Friday 22. Went Home. Drove Back the next day with Thelma and George Garrigus. Left Great Lakes on 25 May for Norfolk, VA. Arrived in Camp Allen 26 May, remained there for four days and was transferred to Ship’s Company at Camp Bradford, reported at Bradford to Lt. Paul M. Ander, 30 May”. Since Uncle Jim wrote his second enlistment, I wonder when his first enlistment was.
In addition to these wonderful gems of family research, I also realized that I have at least a hundred letters that my grandmother wrote my dad from 1960 through the 1980s. My grandmother was a stenographer by training and usually handled most of the family’s correspondence including business correspondence related to my grandfather’s medical practice. At least I know that when I eventually finish with the World War II letters, I’ll still have a lot to share about the family!
First-Send the $1,000 back back and write them to discontinue that phase of the thing. We don’t want to be mailing those things back every year.
Got two letters today and by the way when you address the letter put the (jg) right after the Lt. looks like you forgot something.
Had a pretty hard morning this morning but 5 of us had to examine 10 men this P.M. The rest of the time we sat. We have a lecture course at the base which meets twice each week. It’s all about navy rules + regulations. I know what that court-martial means now, will explain that when I come home. D
Still haven’t heard anything from my application and don’t suppose I will for some time yet. It just makes a fellow between the devil and the deep blue sea but I can’t see that I’m any better or worse off than others who didn’t apply.
This might be the last letter you’ll get before I get home but I’ll keep writing because
(page 2) I might not get off next week. I’m going to try about Tue, Wed. or Thur. Pay day is Wed and that might have something to do with it, because funds are a little short for fare etc. I’d have enough for here but to get a round trip would cramp me somewhat.
Its been sprinkling here a little but still no rain. It get cool here each night but hot as the dickens in day time.
Well, Hope to see you next week if this gets there before I do-