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Kenje Ogata collection, 1942-2011

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Series I: Recordings
Subseries I: Audio Recordings
Interview with Kenje Ogata, November 2001 , conducted by Jeanette I. Calkins and Lawrence W. Calkins.
2 audio cassettes
ID: AFC2001/001/76800 SR01-SR02
Digital content available
Topics covered include: Father comes to America with grandfather and uncle, family stories; Mother comes to America from Japan, parents marry; father's experiences in the American west, foreman of a copper mine; family goes east to Gary, Indiana, father becomes a cook; family moves to Sterling, Illinois; parents have a cafeteria in YMCA; Kenje born in 1919, as a boy spends time at city hall, fire and police stations; brother, Kent; meets future wife, Wilma, while working at National Manufacturing Company; helps support parents and brother; marries; learns to fly; enlists the day after Pearl Harbor; encounters racism, Japanese-Americans set apart, declines offer to go home; basic training; tries to apply for language school; after 2 years becomes company clerk of replacement depot; transferred to Air Corps; aerial gunnery school in Las Vegas; Camp Grant Hospital; German prisoners of war (POWs); profiled by police as a spy; animosity to Japanese-Americans; teaching Wilma to shoot, ricochet hits Kenje, Army questions Wilma; Ogata family not harassed during war, did not know what was happening to other Japanese-Americans in the western states, did not tell parents of internment camps; married, living off base in Rockford, Illinois; Davis Monthan Air Field, Tucson, Arizona, final bomber training with crew; goes overseas; Arrival in Italy; practice missions along the Adriatic; first bombing mission right away; missions, briefings, procedures; ground crew unhappy about lost bombers; 35 missions; making friends; shot down for the first time, 12/26/1944, longest mission to date for 15th Air Force, bombed rail yards; Oswiecim, Poland; misses briefing, has no idea what country he's in, 2 engines shot out over target, bailout, finds others 24 hours later; instructions for parachuting; in clouds, hears beautiful choir, compelled to pull rip chord too early; on ground, hears artillery fire, emergency kit contents; fog, dogs, evasive maneuvers, heads south, meets man, taken to village of Magyarkeszi, Hungary; in 1985, Ogatas revisit Magyarkeszi, given a piece of the bomber; racism, school days; father; tactics in air combat, 600 bombers, targets, flak, formations, bombing; injured in target shooting accident while on furlough; shot down a second time in Yugoslavia; shortage of ball turret gunners, fills in with other crews, gets home first; heated flight suits.
Subseries II: Video Recordings
BOX CDDVD221 Interview with Kenje Ogata, August 18, 2008 , conducted by Kenjalin Ogata.
1 DVD
ID: AFC2001/001/76800 MV01
Digital content available
Topics covered include: Boardwalks in San Francisco; parents from Japan, arranged marriage; childhood memories; leaves for the Army in January 1942; initial army experience with racism; sent to Medical Corps at Camp Grant with other Japanese-American GIs; Earns Pilot's license before the war; wanted to be in Air Corps but was not permitted; two years in Medical Corps; efforts to get into Air Corps; attempts to get Japanese language assignment; detained near Camp Grant for being Japanese American; other Japanese American GIs at Camp Grant; injured in target shooting accident; Gunnery school, meet crew, goes overseas via Newfoundland and Algeria, sealed orders; based in Foggia, Italy, 35 missions, shot down twice; missions to Germany; Oswiecim, Poland, after being shot down, return from mission to Russia over Hungary; bailing out, unusual experience saves his life; return to Hungary in 1985, given a piece of the fuselage of the plane he was shot down in; shot down a second time in Yugoslavia; return to the States; attends college on the GI bill; moves to Chicago, graduates from University of Illinois Dental School; Dental Clinic; birth of daughter; American citizenship; dangers of flying; ball turret and how it worked; wife discusses meat rationing; 6 weeks MIA; about veteran and his parents; keeping in touch with crew mates; veterans organizations.
Series II: Manuscripts
BOX-FOLDER MSS2125/1 Biography, 2001-2011
1 folder
Digital content available
Digital content available
MS01: "Kenje's Story," (11/2001)
MS02: "Supplement to Biographical Data," (02/2011).
BOX-FOLDER MSS2125/2-3 Civilian Papers, 1944-1949
2 folders
Digital content available
MS03: Correspondence, printed matter and coursework relating to veteran's undergraduate and graduate studies (1947-1949).

MS04: Veterans Administration correspondence and forms concerning subsistence allowance (1947).

MS05: Last Will and Testament and General Power of Attorney (1944).
BOX-FOLDER MSS2125/4 Clippings, 1944-2002
1 folder
MS06: Clippings relating to veteran's service and family, and modern accounts looking back on his service.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2125/5-6 Correspondence, 1942-1945
2 folders
Digital content available
MS07: Correspondence from veteran to his Wife, Wilma, who lived in Sterling, Illinois. Topics covered include: Travel plans; finances; work assignments; mail deliveries; transfer to Air Corps and training; racial discrimination; family and friends; recreation; being shot down.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2126/1-3 Correspondence, 1942-1945
3 folders
MS07
BOX-FOLDER MSS2126/4 Correspondence, 1945
1 folder
Digital content available
MS08: Correspondence from the War Department to Mrs. Wilma Ogata concerning veteran's status as missing in action.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2126/5 Correspondence, 1942-1943
1 folder
Digital content available
MS09: Correspondence to and from veteran regarding his request to enlist in the Air Corps.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2152/1 Correspondence, February 7, 1945
1 folder
Digital content available
MS13: V-mail from veteran to his wife.
BOX-FOLDER OVZ135/1 Creative Works, undated
1 folder
Digital content available
MS15: Sheet music, "Furlough in Paradise. Dedicated to all restcamps of the U.S. Army Air Forces." Words by Lt. Charles W. (Mickey) McGuire, music by S/Sgt. Paul Reif. Enclosed with February 10, 1945, letter from the veteran to his wife.
BOX-FOLDER OVZ105/1 Maps, circa 1944
1 folder
Digital content available
MS11: Silk map of Europe carried by veteran when he was shot down over Hungary on 12/26/1944.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2126/7 Military Papers, 1943-1945
1 folder
Digital content available
MS12: Orders, combat records, medical records, memoranda, discharge, financial documents, statement regarding an air accident, Thanksgiving menu.
BOX-FOLDER OVZ136/1 Military Papers, 1943-1945
1 folder
MS12: Orders, combat records, medical records, memoranda, discharge, financial documents, statement regarding an air accident, Thanksgiving menu.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2152/2 Military Papers, 1945
1 folder
MS14: Orders for veteran's third oak leaf cluster (03/29/1945); letter from War Department to veteran's wife with list of veteran's crewmates and their next of kin (02/15/1945).
Series III: Photographs
BOX-FOLDER MSS2126/8 Original Photographic Prints, 1924-1988
1 folder
Digital content available
PH01-PH02, PH04-PH29: Includes family photographs, Ogata in during his service in the United States and in Italy, images of Ogata's 1985 trip to Hungary, reunions.
BOX-FOLDER OVZ111/1 Original Photographic Prints, January 1942
1 folder
PH03: Company B, 32nd Medical Training Battalion, Camp Grant, Illinois.
BOX-FOLDER MSS2126/9 Digital Prints, 2008
1 folder
PH30: 451st Bomb Group Reunion, Deerfield, Illinois.
Series IV: Artifacts
BOX-FOLDER MSS2152/3 Artifact, 1942-1945
1 folder
Digital content available
AR01: Money from Hungary, Soviet Union, and Romania (1942 - 1945).

Contents List