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A Guide to the Walker Family Papers

Finding aid created by Jordan Vaal

University of Florida Smathers Libraries - Special and Area Studies Collections
December 2013


Descriptive Summary

Creator: Walker, Claudius James
Creator: Walker, Anna Althea
Title: Walker Family Papers
Dates: 1938-1945
Abstract: Personal correspondence between Claudius and Anna Walker, mainly while he served in the United States Army before and during World War II.
Extent: 0.2 Linear feet. 1 box.
Identification: MS 323
Language(s): English
Online Content Items from this collection have been digitized and are available online.

Biographical/Historical Note

Claudius James Walker was born October 23, 1907 in Los Angeles, California. Anna Althea Walker was born January 9, 1909 in Mt. Morris, New York. The two married on September 4, 1937 and bore three children, Claudius Alan Walker, Claudia Anna Walker, and Shirley Althea Walker.

Claudius completed ROTC at the University of Florida in August 1938 and then served as second in command at the Civilian Conservation Corps in Fair Haven, N.Y. With the entry of the United States into World War II, he was called into active service in March 1942 and served overseas in Europe in 1945 with the 762nd Field Artillery Battalion. He received the Bronze Star for meritorious service. While serving in Europe, Claudius traveled with the Army from LaHarve, France, through Belgium, to south of the Danube River in Germany.

During the years that Claudius served in the army, Anna Walker worked as a school teacher and moved between New York and Florida.


Scope and Content

Most of the letters in this collection were written between husband and wife during Claudius Walker's military service. The earlier letters from Claudius discuss his daily activities and how much he misses his wife. Anna's early letters discuss the immediate and extended family. From October 15, 1941 to March 4, 1942, all letters were between Anna and her mother, Anna Maria Pease.

Once Claudius entered the European Theater letters focused more on the war. Some of the topics discussed include the scarcity of supplies at the front and at home, and Claudius' reaction to the destruction in Europe caused by the war. As the war in Europe came to an end, Claudius also discussed the confusion and lack of information concerning when he would get to leave Europe and return home.

Included in this collection are 50 letters between Claudius and Anna, and Anna and her mother. There are also 20 scanned photos of the Walker family, as well as a scanned photo of Claudius with the Civilian Conservation Corps, and one with the 762nd Field Artillery Battalion. There are several original and scanned copies of post cards that Claudius sent to his family from Europe as well as color photographs of Claudius' Military Insignia, the original paperwork for the Bronze Star Medal he was awarded, and a newspaper clipping on his award. An oversized map marks Claudius' travels in Europe with the military. His son, Alan, gives a brief description of the family's use of the GI Bill benefits.

All items in the collection have been scanned, and the letters are transcribed in a bound volume made by the Walker family and stored with the letters; the volume includes CDs of the scanned images.

The bound volume includes scanned photos of Europe during the war, scanned photos of officers, a scanned copy of the headquarters roster, as well as interpretive text and descriptions that are not included within the collection.


Access or Use Restrictions

Access

The collection is open for research.


Related or Separated Material

Other collections related to World War II in the George A. Smathers Libraries can be found at: http://www.library.ufl.edu/spec/pkyonge/wwii/wwii.html


Administrative Information

Alternative Format Available

Digital reproductions of selected items can be viewed at: http://guides.uflib.ufl.edu/walker. All items in the collection have been scanned, and the collection includes CDs of the scanned images.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Walker Family Papers, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Claudia W. Doddington, October 2013.


Contents List

Box
1 Correspondence. 1938
1 Correspondence. 1939
1 Correspondence. 1940
1 Correspondence. 1941
1 Correspondence. 1942
1 Correspondence. 1943
1 Correspondence. 1944
1 Correspondence and Map (Military Travels in Europe). 1945
1 Images of Regalia. Circa 1945
1 Bound volume: "Capt. Claudius J. Walker 0-306381." Copies of the entire collection in facsimile with interpretive text. 1938-1945
1 CD: "C.J. Walker Family Letters" (scanned images). 2013
1 CD: "C.J. Walker Family Story WWII" (A book in PDF format). 2010

Selected Subjects and Access Terms

Army spouses -- Correspondence
World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives, American



For further information, please contact: Special Collections Access Services.

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