Collection of papers 1941-2005, undated (bulk 1943-1946), consisting primarily of letters from Pvt. Leon W. Jackson to his sister Lois (Claude E.) Dees and to her son Tony while he was serving in the U. S. Army in Georgia and Europe; also letters from Leon W. Jackson's friend, Pfc. Jerrold S. Robinson to Lois (Mrs. Claude E.) Dees and Leon W. Jackson; also dated photograph and album.
Pvt. Leon W. Jackson received his basic training at Camp Wheeler, Georgia in 1943 and was then transferred to Fort Meade, Maryland. In early January 1944, he was transferred to England where he was stationed until June of the following year. While in England, Jackson was hospitalized for frequent fainting spells and was reclassified and put on non-combat status. He then served as a clerk in the Special Services and was transferred to Paris in 1945. By late 1945, Jackson was stationed in Frankfurt, Germany and continued his duties in the Special Services Office there until March of 1946, and was subsequently repatriated back to the U.S. Anthony R. Dees, the donor of the collection, was Jackson's nephew. Lois (Mrs. Claude E.) Dees was the donor's mother.
The papers consist primarily of letters written by Pvt. Leon W. Jackson during his service in World War II to his sister, Lois (Mrs. Claude E.) Dees and her son, Tony, of Goldsboro, North Carolina. Early correspondence from Jackson discusses his reflections of life at Camp Wheeler, GA, and his visits to the nearby town of Macon, GA. Church visits, daily routines, food rations, as well as a medical operation and his eventual recovery from the operation are also discussed. Jackson also writes of his dreaded anticipation to begin basic training, and later offers details of enduring the training. He also comments quite often on sightseeing tours and entertainment he experiences in Georgia, New York, London and Paris. Types of entertainment include stage shows, movies and concerts. Specifically, he mentions the London Opera Company, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Maurice Winniks Orchestra and "ASCOT CLUB." Jackson also describes his own participation, along with other troops, in entertaining sick and wounded troops at such events as a "March of Dimes" party. While in London, he offers details of his time spent in various hospitals in his attempt to receive a diagnosis of his fainting condition. Other topics addressed by Jackson include his concern for his father's refusal to retire, feelings on the censoring of soldier's mail by the U.S. government, love interests, an engagement and contact with members of the Women's Army Corps (WAC). Also of interest are a few letters that are written on specially designed stationary. Early letters from Georgia are written on stationary featuring cartoons of anti-Axis propaganda. Also, a few letters written in Paris have letterhead featuring historic images of the city. Jackson's papers also include a few letters sent to Jackson and his sister from friend Pfc. Jerrold S. Robinson, who was serving in Company C, 133rd Infantry Regiment. The papers also consist of Jackson's autograph album containing signatures of his acquaintenances from Edwards Military Institute and Pinelands College at Salemburg, NC. Two Stars and Stripes (Paris Edition) newspapers reporting on the Japanese surrender in 1945, and a 1989 article by Winkie Lee, "Homer Ball Remembers WWII: V-Mail: Microfilm Helped People Stay in Touch," in the Goldsboro News Argus describing the role of V-Mail during World War II are also present. (Ball was a Goldsboro resident, who served with the unit that produced microfilmed soldier's letters to produce V-mail.) In addition, a key to Jackson's correspondence prepared by Anthony Roane Dees, Jackson's nephew, in 2005 is also included. The key identifies people, places and other specific information contained in Jackson's letters.
Gift of Anthony R. Dees
Encoded by Lindsay Flood, April 4, 2008
Processed by: Joseph H. Robertson 2007 Dale Sauter 2008
Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.