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Personal Narratives of the Forced Removal and Incarceration of Japanese Americans During World War II: Veterans History Project (U.S.)

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Series II: War Relocation Authority Civilian Employees & Military Support (continued)
Edna M. Becker Collection
Collection ID: 9653
Digital content available
Becker worked as a secretary for the federal government in several locations, including Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Wyoming.
BOX AC-206 Audio Interview with Edna M. Becker, February 25, 2003
21 minutes
SR01: Topics covered include: Education; Pearl Harbor; job at Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Wyoming; Casper with sister; marriage; D-Day celebration; after war; keeping in contact with relatives in the service; her husband's experience in war.
BOX-FOLDER MSS-00453 Photograph, February 25, 2003
1 folder
PH01: Contemporary photograph of Becker, Powell, Wyoming (2/25/2003).
Lewis J. Furlong Collection
Collection ID: 91002
Furlong was drafted into the Army in 1943, and served with I Company, 3rd Battalion, 275th Infantry Regiment, 70th Infantry Division as a M1918 Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR) man. His service included guarding the Tule Lake Relocation Center, California, in 1944, before volunteering for the infantry and shipping out to the European Theater.
BOX CD/DVD-323 Video Interview with Lewis J. Furlong, May 4, 2013
59 minutes
MV01: Topics covered include: Early life and family; moving to Tipp City, Ohio; school; playing baseball; inducted in 1943; being assigned to guard Tule Lake Relocation Center, California; thoughts on reparations paid to Japanese Americans; interactions with Japanese Americans; volunteering for the infantry; transferring to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri for more training; M1918 Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR) man; leaving Boston, Massachusetts aboard a troop ship; nine days of travel; landing at Marseille, France, in mid-December 1944; staying overnight in a warehouse; leaving Marseille by train for eastern France; ambushed by Germans on first day; cold weather; going to a French warehouse but have to leave because of German fire; trapped on a hill for seven days without supplies; finally leaving the hills; treated for frost bite; slowly taking town by town; getting to the Siegfried line; war ending; sent to Frankfort, Germany to guard the train station; return to United States in March 1946 on the USS William and Mary; taking a passenger train from Pennsylvania to Dayton, Ohio; truck driver for a stone quarry; work for Tipp Lumber Company; handling feed for a feed company; marriage and family; working for A. O. Smith Corporation from 1952-1985 in the factory and in the office.
Alice A. Gapp Collection
Collection ID: 5887
Digital content available
Gapp worked as a librarian for the War Relocation Authority at Rohwer Relocation Center, Arkansas, from 1943-1944.
BOX AC-145 Audio Interview with Alice A. Gapp, October 14, 2002
24 minutes
SR01: Topics covered include: decided to be a librarian; bachelor's degree from Drexel Institute of Library Science in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; rural library WPA (Works Progress Administration) job in Lincoln, Nebraska; felt sad for Japanese Americans; wanted to make life better at a forced reomoval center; sent to Rohwer Relocation Center in McGehee, Arkansas; substitute science teacher; Japanese American staff; community librarian; living conditions at the Center; tar paper shacks; work friend; Suroto Hatanaka's wedding at Buddhist church; sang song in Japanese; Nisei spoke English; interviewed people to return to Japan via Gripsholm; typical day of work; books supplied by United States government; story hours; books in Japanese for Issei; twelve staff members; Nisei occupations, animator for Walt Disney; people were upset; family; Japanese language school for children; cultural life in camp; gift of painting; Noh drama; biweekly newspaper in English and Japanese; Earnest Teens of YWCA trip to Little Rock, Arkansas; allowed outside camp with Caucasian escort; went to Jerome, Arkansas, in dump truck with sumo wrestling group; living arrangements; food and gardening at the camp; separate mess hall for staff; no military except for guards; Protestant church; piano concerts; Buddhist services; Gapp could leave the base anytime; many Japanese Americans relocated to Chicago, Illinois; one year at the Center; left to get married to Frank, who she met while in Nebraska; kept in touch with friends; Japanese who went to Italy; reflections on time; party and gifts at the Center for her wedding.
Velma Berryman Kessel Collection
Collection ID: 9640
Digital content available
Kessel worked as a registered nurse at Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Wyoming, 1942-1945.
BOX AC-205 Audio Interview with Velma Berryman Kessel, June 19, 2002
33 minutes
SR01: Topics covered include: nurse at Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Wyoming; family history; duties and living arrangements; off duty hours and exercise; car wreck; found young girl at gate; favorite patient; 16 year old girl with tuberculosis; "soakers" maker; President Franklin Roosevelt's death; D-Day remembered; gas rations; family in service; marriage and war separation; reaction to work at camp; war time marriages; correspondence; medical changes; memorable moments and people; organizations; activities; impressions; Florida days; nursing 40 years.
BOX-FOLDER MSS-453 Photograph, June 19, 2002
1 folder
PH01: Contemporary photograph of Kessel, Powell, Wyoming (6/19/2002).
Edwin Isacce Morris Jr. Collection
Collection ID: 108611
Morris was drafted in 1942 and served with the 442nd Signal Heavy Construction Battalion (Aviation), 15th Signal Brigade, United States Army Air Forces. His service included working at Tule Lake Relocation Center, California.
BOX CD/DVD-514 Video Interview with Edwin Isacce Morris Jr., June 13, 2016
48 minutes
MV01: Topics covered include: Early life and family; parents were farmers; early years; recreation, cards, musicians in family; one room schoolhouse; drafted; Fort Leavenworth, Kansas; boot camp in Atlantic City, New Jersey; barracks in hotel; KP duty; café in Philadelphia "had plates upside down from train soot;" advanced training at Camp Crowder, Missouri; installed communication lines at Hammer Field, California and Camp Pinedale, California; worked at Tule Lake Relocation Center, California; installed communication lines for Coast Guard in Wheeler, Oregon; troop ship to New Guinea; morale; friendships; off duty leisure time; recreation; movies; reading books; diary of time in the military; invasion of Leyte, Philippines; bomber flew so low over base he could see the pilot; unexploded bomb one morning in a wood pile on Leyte; all outgoing mail was censored; transported form Lingayen Gulf to Japan on LST; installing communication lines in New Guinea, the Philippines, and Japan; return home; farming; recalled for Korean War; sister died from tuberculosis (TB); brother died at age 25; three daughters and one son (who died at 17 in a car accident); mechanic at implement company (1958); used GI Bill for vocational agricultural school; benefits of military; woodworking hobby; travel around US; worked with Forest Rangers in Yosemite National Park and Sequoia National Park installing communication lines.
Doris Holloway Sleath Collection
Collection ID: 20426
Digital content available
Sleath worked as a nurse at the Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona, where she ran the maternity department. She later lived at Manzanar Relocation Center, California, and Tule Lake Relocation Center, California, where her husband, Dr. Jack Sleath, worked as a doctor.
BOX CD/DVD-15 Video Interview with Doris Holloway Sleath, April 9, 2004
47 minutes
MV01: Topics covered include: San Francisco before the attack on Pearl Harbor; radio report of attack; fear in California of invasion; Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona, early medical situation; Japanese American reaction to detention center; Japanese American doctors; setting up the hospital, facilities and staff; maternity ward with help from Japanese Americans; Valley Fever; training of Japanese Americans in hospital and office skills; employment of Japanese Americans; medical department philosophy; Manzanar Relocation Center, California; medical story at Manzanar Relocation Center; medical story at Gila River; kindness shown by Japanese Americans; Caucasian support of Japanese American situation; Tule Lake Relocation Center, California; Japanese American protest at Tule Lake; Tule Lake revisited in the middle 1970s.
BOX-FOLDER MSS-722/1 Transcript, April 9, 2004
1 folder
MS01: Transcript of MV01.
BOX-FOLDER MSS-722/2 Photographs, 2003
1 folder
PH01: Two clothing items made by Japanese Americans at Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona [2003].
PH02: Jacket made by Japanese Americans at Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona [2003].
PH03: Jacket made by Japanese Americans at Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona [2003].
PH04: A wood tray made by the father of Sadako Sameshima for Dr. Jack C. Sleath in appreciation for saving his daughter's life in Manzanar Relocation Center, California [2003].
PH05: The back of a wood tray made by the father of Sadako Sameshima for Dr. Jack C. Sleath in appreciation for saving his daughter's life in Manzanar Relocation Center, California [2003].
PH06: A red knitted gored skirt made by a young Japanese girl for Janet, daughter of Doris Sleath, Tule Lake Relocation Center, California [2003].
PH07: A white stuffed lamb given to Janet Sleath by a Japanese American druggist in hospital, Tule Lake Relocation Center, California [2003].
PH08: A Western Union telegram sent to Doris Sleath informing her of her appointment to Graduate Nurse at Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona, and a black and white portrait of Doris Sleath, [2003].
PH09: Dr. Jack Sleath's application to the Office of Emergency Management.
PH10: Dr. Jack Sleath's application to the Office of Emergency Management.
Jack Crisp Sleath Collection
Collection ID: 20438
Sleath worked as a Chief Medical Officer and was stationed at Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona; Tule Lake Relocation Center, California, and Manzanar Relocation Center, California, as well as in Washington DC.
BOX-FOLDER MSS-722 Memoirs, undated
1 folder
MS01: Overview of the War Relocation Authority (WRA) and Sleath's personal experience as a WRA doctor. Topics covered include: Rejected by Navy, seeking work in another government agency; reporting to work at Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona; construction of Gila River Relocation Center, Arizona; Valley Fever; setting up a first aid station; arrival of formerly incarcerated people; supplies; wondering if patients and their families would trust him, if he would be resented, hated; conditions at local hospital; treating a patient with a ruptured appendix; public health hazards; overcrowded facilities; opening of 250 bed hospital; treating Caucasian personnel; well-trained medical personnel relocated to other parts of the country; taking position as project medical director at Tule Lake; gaining the trust of medical personnel at Tule Lake Relocation Center, California; anti-American sentiment of formerly incarcerated people; psychiatric treatments; formerly incarcerated people raised funds to buy medical equipment; treating a patient shot by military police; formerly incarcerated people on hunger strike.

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