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Frank R. Bartimo Papers, 1942-1947

Manuscript Collection #701

Descriptive Summary Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Title: Frank R. Bartimo Papers
Creator: Bartimo, Frank R.
Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
Languages: English
Abstract: Papers (1942-1947) including correspondence, official documents, letters, problems with homosexual, description of poor living conditions, etc.
Extent: 0.22 Cubic feet, 201 items, consisting of correspondence and official documents.

Administrative Information Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Accessions Information

May 22, 1995, 184 items; Personal correspondence (1942-1947) of U.S. Navy officer and post-war Judge Advocate Section officer. Gift courtesy of the Friends of ECU Library.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions

Copyright Notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Preferred Citation

Frank R. Bartimo Papers (#701), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

Acquisition Information

  • Gift of Friends of ECU Library

Processing Information

  • Encoded by Apex Data Services


Biographical / Historical Note Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Frank R. Bartimo (b. 1914) resided in the Washington, DC, area and worked in Secretary of State Cordell Hull's office before World War II. Bartimo joined the Navy (July 1944) and trained at the U.S. Naval Training Station in Newport, RI. Bartimo served (August-October, 1945) on the aircraft carrier USS LOS ANGELES (CA-135) but saw no action. He was discharged, and as a civilian was employed by the Army's Judge Advocate section in Heidelberg, Germany (December 1946-February 1947). The collection consists of Bartimo's letters to his wife, Kay, and also contains letters from Bartimo's brother-in-law, Richard Toomey, to his sister, Kay. Toomey joined the Navy and trained at the Great Lakes Naval Training Station (April-September 1942) and served (October 1942-August 1945) on the light cruiser USS CLEVELAND (CL-55).

Description Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

The collection's early correspondence concerns Toomey's training experiences. Included are sites around Chicago, IL, such as the Marshall Field Museum, the Schlitz Brewery, and exotic architecture (May 31, 1942); the Plant Conservatory and Lincoln Park Zoo (July 13, 1942); and a circus (September 21, 1942). Toomey also mentions a visit by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the secrecy involved (September 21, 1942). Further correspondence mentions the training of Negroes as commandos (August 21, 1942); naval training (August 24, 1942); the high divorce rate among sailors due to infidelity (December 17, 1944); life on board the CLEVELAND (October 7, 1942- August 29, 1945); and the belief that all branches of the military disliked General Douglas MacArthur (September 22, 1945). Throughout Toomey's correspondence, the subjects of censorship and Toomey's low opinion of the Navy are expressed.

The later correspondence details Bartimo's training at the U.S. Naval Training Station in Newport, RI, including fire-fighting and abandoning-ship drills (March 27 and 29, 1945). One piece of correspondence from a friend in Washington, DC, discusses theArmy's Cadillac II program and its importance, as well as the new United Nations charter (June 24, 1945). While in Cuba during Bartimo's brief duty on the LOS ANGELES, he mentions the poor living conditions, prostitution, and the purchase of clothes, cigars, and perfume (September 3-31, 1945).

Post-war correspondence from Heidelberg, Germany, is particularly interesting and throughout the letters Bartimo discusses the poor living conditions; anti-occupation and anti-American feelings; and forms of entertainment such as cocktail parties, clubs, and skiing (December 15, 1946-February 5, 1947). Also detailed are cases of embezzlement by American Army colonels and German civilians, and black market activities (December 20-26, 1946, February 1-2, 1947); alleged rape (January 1, 1947); and a dishonorable discharge for assault (January 15, 1947). Other topics discussed are venereal disease (December 21, 1946); adultery on board ship and in Germany (December 9, 1946, January 2, 1947); a relationship between a young American Negro man and a young German woman (February 1-2, 1947); and problems with a homosexual roommate (February 3, 1947).

Online access to this finding aid is supported with funds created through the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). These funds come through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which is administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. This grant is part of the North Carolina ECHO, Exploring Cultural Heritage Online, Digitization Grant Program.

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This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Special Collections Division, J.Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University. The materials described here are physically available in our reading room. None of the original documents in this collection are digitally available online at this time.
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