Friday, October 12, 2007

Ohio and World War II

Between December 1, 1941 and December 31, 1946, over 16.1 million personnel served in the U.S armed forces. Of that number, approximately 893,000 came from the Buckeye state and served their country during World War II.

Between 1,000 and 1,500 World War II veterans die each day in this country. To keep their stories from dying with them, the PBS stations in Ohio, in conjunction with the Ohio Humanities Council, have banded together to form the Ohio War Stories Program.

Veterans and civilians who lived through the war years are encouraged to contribute pictures, videos or write a blog about their wartime experiences. You must register to submit material, but registration is not necessary to view the contributions made to the Web site,

Some examples of stories already submitted:

1. Wendy Cochrane in a video called, “About My Parents,” shares the story of how her British mother and her American father met while her father served in England.

2. Read about Mildred Gillars (Axis Sally) and her Ohio background in the post, “Ohio's Connection with Axis Sally.”

3. There were four German P.O.W. camps in the state of Ohio during the War. Scott Trostel writes about these in “Ohio's German P.O.W. Camps.”

4. In the video, “George H. Snyder, Jr.: P.O.W,” George talks about his time spent as a P.O.W. in Europe and his first day in battle.

5. Bill Ruth's video talks about the sites he witnessed in liberating a German concentration camp in a video called, “Bill Ruth, Dachau Witness.”

6. “Saipan Fear” is the image of a Japanese postcard depicting Pearl Harbor and the blog that accompanies that image.

7. In “The Day That Changed Everything” by Alberta L. Montgomery, she writes her story as a young wife experiencing the news of Pearl Harbor.

8. Christopher Purdy submitted a series of letters written by his father while he served in the US Army. The title of his post is “War letters.”

These and other stories can be found at The Ohio War Stories Web site at

Until Next Time — Happy Ancestral Digging!

Note this post first published online, October 12, 2007, at Desktop Genealogist Blog at The News-Messenger Online

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