National Museum of the Pacific War Oral History Collection - Browse

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Oral History Interview with L. B. Blackmon, April 10, 2007

Description: Interview with L. B. Blackmon, a serviceman in the U. S. Navy during World War II. He discusses boot camp in San Diego, his assignment to Pearl Harbor, and his experiences during the attack. He later trained cadets in Corpus Christi.
Date: April 10, 2007
Creator: Misenhimer, Richard & Blackmon, L. B.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with O. H. King, September 28, 2002

Description: Interview with O. H. "Karl" King of Fort Worth, Texas, who is a World War Two veteran of the United States Marine Corps. In the interview, Mr. King recalls memories of his travels, the Japanese attack on Clark Field, the Battle for Bataan, and when he was a Japanese prisoner-of-war. He also talks about other experiences he had while serving in the Marines and his life before and after the war.
Date: September 28, 2002
Creator: Graham, Eddie & King, O. H.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Jessie Clark, June 6, 2002

Description: Interview with Jessie Clark regarding her experiences during World War II. She discusses having to adjust to a lifestyle of rationing for food products and shoes as well as blackouts and scrap metal drives. Her husband worked for the Southern Pacific Railroad and was often absent while she stayed home to raise their children in Houston. She discusses the scarcity of toys during Christmas and hosiery.
Date: June 6, 2002
Creator: Loyd, Ms. & Clark, Jessie
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Floyd Mumme, April 12, 2002

Description: Interview with Floyd Mumme, a medic during World War II. He discusses boot camp, being deployed to Saipan, Japanese trying to steal food, working in the Army Medical Corps, and treating wounds in combat.
Date: April 12, 2002
Creator: Misenhimer, Richard & Mumme, Floyd C.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Buck Gibson, October 19, 2002

Description: Interview with Buck Gibson of Waco, Texas, a veteran from the United States Navy during World War Two. The interview includes some of Mr. Gibson's background before and after the war as well as his personal experiences while in the Navy, including memories of his training, life in the Navy, the sinking of the USS Indianapolis, and what happened after he was rescued.
Date: October 19, 2002
Creator: Cox, Bill & Gibson, Buck
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with John Wilson, January 31, 2002

Description: Interview with John Wilson, an officer in the U. S. Army during World War II. Wilson was born in Illinois but attended high school in the Philippines after his father accepted an engineering position there. He graduated from high school in 1939 and then enrolled in the University of Wisconsin, where he participated in the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program. He graduated and took his commission in the Army in 1943. After Officer Candidate School (OCS), he was assigned to an engineering unit slated to participate in the invasion of the Philippines. He eventually landed on Luzon. On Luzon he was assigned temporary duty with a small Philippine Civil Affairs unit that was made up of officers and men who had relatives interned by the Japanese in the Philippines. His small unit made their way to Santo Tomas where he liberated many friends and old school mates. A few weeks later, Wilson liberated his father, a civilian internee at Los Banos. Wilson remained with his unit constructing hospitals in the Philippines in anticipation of the casualties expected from the invasion of the Japanese home islands.
Date: January 31, 2002
Creator: Pratt, Rick & Wilson, John
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Melvin Harmon, October 21, 2002

Description: Interview with Melvin Harmon, a paratrooper during World War II. He discusses his paratrooper training and his time on Guadalcanal, Bougainville and other battles in the Solomon Islands. He also contracted malaria.
Date: October 21, 2002
Creator: Morris, Cork & Harmon, Melvin
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Jerell E. Crow, August 24, 2002

Description: Interview with Jerell E. Crow. He entered the Coast Guard in 1940 and trained in Florida and New York City. He served aboard a Landing Ship, Tank (LST) when those ships were first introduced. He traveled to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to the Neville Island Shipyard operated by the Dravo Corporation as part of a crew that brought an LST down the Mississippi River to New Orleans. From there, the crew practiced operations at Biloxi, Mississippi. Eventually, Crow travelled to San Diego aboard the LST through the Panama Canal. From there, he went to Guadalcanal and unloaded tanks. Eventually, his ship was hit at Saipan and he was wounded. He also served aboard an LST during the invasions of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Afterwards, Crow's LST was present in Tokyo Bay for the surrender. He visited Hiroshima while on occupation duty after the atomic bomb was dropped. Eventually, his LST made its way back to San Francisco where he was discharged.
Date: August 24, 2002
Creator: Rabalais, Larry & Crow, Jerell E.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Boyd K. Miller, January 21, 2003

Description: Interview with Boyd K. Miller, a draftsman and pilot during World War II. He discusses being drafted out of college and working as an artist and draftsman. Since he studied art in college, he worked on diagrams and charts. He then transferred to the Air Corps to become a pilot and trained in Pennsylvania, Mississippi, Alabama, New York, Georgia, Florida and Texas.
Date: January 21, 2003
Creator: Misenhimer, Richard & Miller, Boyd K.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Earl Smyth, Jr., October 20, 2003

Description: Interview with Earl Smyth, Jr., a serviceman during World War II. He discusses his time aboard the USS Saratoga at the Battle of Midway and at Guadalcanal, where the ship sustained two torpedo attacks. He saw Pearl Harbor three days after the attack.
Date: October 20, 2003
Creator: Bryk, Clarence & Smyth, Earl, Jr.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Robert D. Haines, May 15, 2002

Description: Interview with Robert D. Haines, an American prisoner of war during World War II. He discusses the attack on Clark Field in the Philippines on December 8, 1941, as well as his experiences on the Bataan Death March. He also tells of his time spent as a prisoner of war under the Japanese at Camp O'Donnell, Cabanatuan and Bilibid prison in Manila. He encountered his brother, who was a civilian internee, at Bilibid. From there, he rode on a hell ship for 39 days to a POW camp in Formosa (Taiwan). When the Americans began bombing Formosa, Haines was moved via another hell ship to Tokyo, Japan. Not long after, he was liberated and returned to San Francisco, then Denver.
Date: May 15, 2002
Creator: Graham, Eddie & Haines, Robert D.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with James Phinney, July 15, 2010

Description: Interview with James (Jim) Phinney, an aircraft electrician for the U. S. Navy during Wold War II. He discusses joining the Navy, going through boot camp and becoming an aircraft electrician. He was assigned to the USS Lexington but abandoned ship after it was hit by a torpedo. He was rescued and was then sent to San Diego to be reassigned to the USS Enterprise. He mentions being at Guadalcanal and later aboard a sub-chaser. The crew crossed the Equator and consequently participated in an initiation ceremony, during which time Admiral Halsey was nearly shot by one of the ship's pilots who forgot to lock his gun. He also recalls some of the food he ate while at sea.
Date: July 15, 2010
Creator: Cox, Floyd; Phinney, James & O'Konski, Susan
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Alan W. Saunders, October 8, 2004

Description: Interview with Alan W. "Buck" Saunders, a pilot during World War II. He discusses joining the Army Air Corps, becoming an airplane mechanic, and going to flight school for pilot training. He was stationed in India and flew supplies into China over the Himalayas (known by pilots as "the Hump"). In China, he traded items such as jewelry or opium for information on Japanese troop placements in Burma. He also discusses his meetings with native Burmese and talks about later experiences he had after the war and during the Vietnam War.
Date: October 8, 2004
Creator: Cox, Floyd & Saunders, Alan W.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Valentin R. Ybarra, April 29, 2004

Description: Interview with Valentin R. Ybarra regarding his experiences during World War II. He discusses his wartime experiences in Peleliu and Okinawa as well as occupation duty in Japan and China. He also had an assignment in Spain. He remembers the Cuban Missile Crisis, the revolt in the Dominican Republic, and his service in Vietnam.
Date: April 29, 2004
Creator: Misenhimer, Richard & Ybarra, Valentin R.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Hazael R. Olivares, March 29, 2003

Description: Interview with Hazael R. Olivares, a serviceman in the U. S. Navy during World War II. Olivares dropped out of high school and decided to join the U. S. Navy after hearing about the attack on Pearl Harbor. He took his 16-week basic training course at Great Lakes in Illinois where he learned how to fire various guns and recognize aircraft. After basic training, he was assigned to Algiers, Louisiana where he learned how to weld. Aboard the USS Bordelon (DD-881), he served as a Ship Fitter in the damage control department. After WWII, he remained in the reserves and was called up for duty in Korea. He served aboard the USS Sitkoh Bay (CVE-86). After Korea, he worked as a civilian for the Army Corps of Engineers as an oiler on a dredge. He then served in the Merchant Marines, hauling refined petroleum products from South America to North America. He also discusses going to French Indochina (Vietnam) and traveling up the Saigon River in a merchant vessel.
Date: March 29, 2003
Creator: Misenhimer, Richard & Olivares, Hazael R.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Hermi Salas, February 14, 2005

Description: Interview with Oral interview with Hermi Salas, a U. S. Marine during World War II. Salas was assigned to the Third Marine Division and was present for the invasion of Guam in the Mariana Islands. He was wounded on Guam and evacuated to a hospital ship, the USS Solace. He also participated in the Iwo Jima landings. After a few weeks at Iwo Jima, Salas was wounded again and placed aboard the USS Solace. He discusses his experiences in the hospital recovering from the wounds he received in the Battle of Iwo Jima. Eventually, he made his way back to San Antonio. He also discusses a brief leave at home before he reported to prison guard duty in Corpus Christi. Upon being discharged after the war, Salas went to radio school and worked at Kelly Air Force Base in the Civil Service.
Date: February 14, 2005
Creator: Cox, Floyd & Salas, Hermi
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with H. L. Obermiller, April 30, 2004

Description: Interview with H. L. Obermiller, a Pharmacist's Mate during World War II. He discusses his involvement in the Battles of Tarawa, Saipan and Tinian, where he served as a Pharmacist's Mate. He remembers having Spam for Thanksgiving, meeting Navajo code talkers, and writing letters home.
Date: April 30, 2004
Creator: Metzler, Ed & Obermiller, H. L.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Glenn G. Morgan, February 17, 2005

Description: Interview with Glenn G. Morgan, a bugler in the U. S. Navy during World War II. He was a bugler aboard the USS Indianapolis and experienced a kamikaze attack during the Okinawa campaign. He also describes transporting the crate that contained the first atomic bomb to Tinian, the ship's sinking, and the four days and five nights he spent in a life raft waiting to be rescued.
Date: February 17, 2005
Creator: Morris, Cork & Morgan, Glenn G.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with James F. Sansom, October 8, 2004

Description: Interview with James F. Sansom, an officer in the U. S. Army during World War II. Sansom joined the Army in 1940 and began training on anti-aircraft guns in Florida. He was selected for Officer Candidate School (OCS) and was commissioned a second lieutenant in 1942. He was assigned to the 843rd Anti-Aircraft Artillery Air Warning Battalion, which made its way to India via the Panama Canal and Australia. Shortly after reaching Calcutta, the unit moved to Myitkyina, Burma. After the war, Sansom was assigned to Sagumo Prison outside Tokyo where Japanese war criminals were being held while on trial for war crimes. He describes some of the routines and residents in the prison. Sansom taught Hideki Tojo how to play card games like gin rummy. Sansom also describes the process of executing convicted prisoners as he carried out some sentences. In all, he executed nine convicted war criminals.
Date: October 8, 2004
Creator: Cox, Floyd & Sansom, James F.
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Lowell Dean Cox, February 1, 2005

Description: Interview with Lowell Dean Cox, a serviceman in the U. S. Navy during World War II. He discusses joining the Navy and serving aboard the USS Indianapolis (CA-35). He was on board when the cruiser was attacked by a Japanese submarine and survived for five days in the water before being rescued.
Date: February 1, 2005
Creator: Bryk, Clarence & Cox, Lowell Dean
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with James William Harrison, January 27, 2005

Description: Interview with James William "Bill" Harrison, a serviceman in the U. S. Navy during World War II. He explains how he joined the navy in San Diego without going to boot camp. He worked on an oil tanker that shipped out to Pearl Harbor a month after the attack there and transported fuel out of San Diego to various ships at sea. He was then transfered to Admiral Nimitz's public relations department. There he and two others wrote stories about the action in the Pacific theater, particularly about the Battle of Midway. They also contributed to a radio show and worked with the national press corps. He then worked at the Naval Air Station in Seattle before traveling to Hilo, Hawaii to meet with soldiers who had returned from Tarawa. In Texas, he attended officer training school and college at Southwestern University. After the war ended, he studied at the University of Texas and University of Oklahoma for law school. He recalls an incident in which his office released a story about a cat that had kittens on board a cruiser; they reported this good news from the Pacific prior to the Battle of Midway. He also met Admirals Nimitz and Byrd, typed up a letter for Elliott Roosevelt to his father (without knowing at the time that he was President Roosevelt's son), and received a ride from shipbuilder and Kaiser Permanente founder Henry J. Kaiser while hitchhiking during leave.
Date: January 27, 2005
Creator: Parish, Brainerd & Harrison, James William
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Mary Schandua, July 9, 2004

Description: Interview with Mary Schandua, a riveter for the Boeing Company during World War II. Florence Reeves also participates in the interview. She began working for the Boeing Company as a riveter in Seattle after she married her husband John, who was in the service. She assembled wing sections on aircraft.
Date: July 9, 2004
Creator: Nichols, Chuck & Schandua, Mary
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Peter Chu, November 1, 2003

Description: Interview with Peter Chu regarding his experiences in China during World War II. Peter's son Alan Chu also participates in this interview. Peter Chu discusses the Japanese occupation in Nanking (Nanjing), China in 1937 when he was 10 years old.
Date: November 1, 2003
Creator: Nichols, Chuck & Chu, Peter
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation

Oral History Interview with Ed Carseth, August 6, 2003

Description: Interview with Ed Carseth, a pilot during World War II. He discusses an early interest in aviation and earned his pilot's license through the Civilian Pilot Training program. He spent a year as an instructor before joining the Air Transport Command. Through 1944 he delivered aircraft to Australia before being assigned to Myitkyina, Burma. He speaks of living conditions at Myitkyina. He flew materials over the Himalaya Mountains (the Hump) from Burma to Kunming, China. Carseth relates anectdotes about General Claire Chennault, Lord Louis Mountbatten, and a squadron mate who kept a baboon.
Date: August 6, 2003
Creator: Metzler, Ed & Carseth, Ed
Item Type: Sound
Partner: National Museum of the Pacific War/Admiral Nimitz Foundation