Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Sky Harbor Airport, Northbrook, Illinois-- Part 1

From the Little-Known Airfields:  Illinois, Northern Chicago Area.

In the last post, I mentioned Miss Esther Mae Nesbitt joining the Civil Air Patrol that flew out of Sky Harbor Airport northwest of Evanston, Illinois.  I'd never hear of it, but thought perhaps it might have been the Pal-Waukee Airport (now Executive Airport) by Wheeling, near where I grew up.  It was a different airport, however.

This facility was opened in 1929 and featured an art deco terminal, clubhouse and hangar.  It was built by the North Shore Airport Company and described as "The Airport of Tomorrow."  It was a base for private aircraft, airlines and sightseeing aircraft.

It cost $500,000 to build, a sizable sum back then and had an elegant arch roof hangar as well as the posh Petrushka Club on top of the terminal.


Monday, October 30, 2017

Sycamore Woman in Civil Air Patrol Out of Evanston

From the March 22, 2017, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"Miss Esther Mae Nesbitt of Sycamore is now a member of the Chicago unit of the Civil Air Patrol which has military training each week in Evanston and is made up of private patrols flying from Sky Harbor airport northwest of Evanston.

"Miss Nesbitt has had previous training this winter at San Antonio, Texas."

The Civil Air Patrol hurt German U-boats operating off the U.S. coast as they kept watch and reported their location to military forces.


Saturday, October 28, 2017

Marines From Tarawa Atoll Accounted For in October

From Missing Marines:  Accounted For.

This site gives information on Marines whose remains have been found and identified.  These are the ones for October 2017, so far:

**  THOMAS JESSE MURPHY--  PHM2C, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marines.

KIA Betio, Tarawa Atoll, 20 Nov. 1943.  Accounted for 12 October 2017.

**  ARNOLD JUNIOR HARRISON--  PFC, Co. B, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine

KIA Betio, Tarawa Atoll  25 Nov. 1943.  Accounted for 10 October 2017

**  RAYMOND ARTHUR BARKER--  Corporal, Co. C, 1st Corps Tank Battallon (Medium)  "Condor."

MIA  Betio, Tarawa, 20 Nov. 1943.  Accounted for 10 October 2017

So Happy the Government Is Doing This.  Thanks.  --GreGen

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Kentucky Unknown Headed Home: On the USS Oklahoma That Fateful Day

October 24, 2017, WBKO  "Kentucky soldier's body headed home decades after Pearl Harbor attack.

Samuel Warwick Crowder, 35, Petty Officer 3rd Class, firefighter on the USS Oklahoma.

Another success by the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.

I wish someone would realize that sailors are not soldiers.

Always Happy to Learn the Unknowns Have Been Accounted.  --GreGen

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Missing Marines: Accounted For

While looking for information on Pvt. Vernon Keaton, USMC, I came across this site of interest about Marines who were missing, but found and accounted for.

Missing Marines.com"  Accounted For.

A whole lot of World War II  Marines.


Private Vernon Keaton-- Part 4: Death Notice in 1941

From the Avalanche Journal  "Vernon Keaton Dies In Action."

"Mr. and Mrs. G. V. Keaton of 609 Avenue M expect daily to receive official notification of the death of their only son in action with the U.S. Marines.

"According to communication to the Red Cross here, the son, Pvt. Vernon P. Keaton 'recently died while in the naval service.'"


Private Vernon Keaton-- Part 3: Ceremonies To Be Held and Public Graveside Service

An Air Force sergeant will fly to Hawaii and escort the remains home.  A ceremony will be held when the remains are placed on the plane there and another one will be held after the plane lands at Will Rogers Airport.

The graveside service will be open to the public.


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Private Vernon P. Keaton-- Part 2: Buried in U.S. or Cremated and Ashes Spread Over Hawaii

His mother and father are both buried at the Lula Cemetery in Lula, Oklahoma.

He was 18 when he joined the USMC and had no children.  The DNA match was not easy to find.

His identification was based on DNA and his family was given the choice of having him buried in the continental United States or cremated with his ashes spread over Hawaii.

They chose burial in Oklahoma.


Monday, October 23, 2017

Private Vernon P. Keaton, USMC-- Part 1

From Find-A-Grave

Private Vernon Paul "Buck" Keaton

Born May 23, 1923 in Texas.  Died December 7, 1941 at Pearl Harbor.

Service # 309484.

Entered service from Oklahoma on 30 May 1941 and was serving with the Marine detachment on the USS Oklahoma.

Before the recent identification he had been buried in Row 4.


Another USS Oklahoma Unidentified Returns: Pvt. Vernon Keaton, USMC

From the October 16, 2017, Tulsa (Ok) World  "Marine killed in Pearl Harbor attack to be buried in Oklahoma."  Matt Dinger of the Oklahoman.

Private Vernon Keaton, USMC, will be buried in a graveside service in Lula. Oklahoma.


Sunday, October 22, 2017

No More Road or Bridge Building

From the March 29, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"The DeKalb County Board of Supervisors was advised that road and bridge building in the county must be set aside for the duration of the war."


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Civil War Group Supports War Effort

From the March22, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"Miss Lillie Austin, patriotic instructor of the Woman's Relief Corps, No. 18 of Sycamore, presented the Sycamore Community High School pupils with some patriotic literature consisting of instructions for displaying our flag, also the history of our creed together with a picture of Lincoln, and a printed copy of the Gettysburg Address."

The Woman's Relief Corps, officially the National Woman's Relief Corps, was the auxiliary to the Grand Army of the Republic, the organization of Union Civil War veterans and was organized in Colorado in 1883.
A Civil War organization supporting this new war.


Monday, October 16, 2017

Singer Sewing Machine Co. Loans Used Machine to Red Cross

From March 22, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"The Singer Sewing Machine Co. of DeKalb has loaned the Clare Red Cross ladies, for the duration, a used sewing machine for which the ladies are grateful."

Sewing for Victory  --GreGen

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Road and Bridge Building Curtailed for War Duration in DeKalb County.

From the March 22, 2017, MidWeek  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"Road and bridge building in DeKalb County will have to be halted until after the war.  Because of priorities, which prohibit the use of vital materials for building unless it is necessary to life or safety, any road construction program will have to wait until the day when such materials will again become available."

In a recent blog entry, I wrote of some of the steps they had to go through in order to repair roads.

Just Another War Sacrifice.  --GreGen

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Growing Food for Victory in Sycamore

From the March 22, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"All Sycamore people interested in directly aiding the war program by helping to produce food stuffs vital to health are invited to attend the organizational meeting of the Sycamore Victory Garden Club."

All In for the War Effort.  --GreGen

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Learn About Fort Fisher's World War II Role This Saturday

Fort Fisher State Historic Site in North Carolina is having a day to show the Civil war's role as an anti-aircraft training facility during World War II this Saturday.

For more information, go to my Running the Blockade Civil War Navy Blog.  Just hit the site in the Blogs I Follow area to the right of this.


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

USS Tracy Fights Japanese at Pearl Harbor

From the March 17, 2017, Scout/Warrior  "A Famous & Historic WW II Navy Ship Attacked Japanese Planes.

The USS Tracy, DD-214, sent fire and damage control crews to other battered American ships and set up machine guns with borrowed ammunition to protect the nearby USS Cummings and USS Pennsylvania.  During the attack, it lost one man killed and 2 lost.

It was a destroyer/minesweeper laid down in 1919, commissioned in 1920 and was in Pearl Harbor that fateful day undergoing a massive overhaul.

It took part in mine laying March 1942 and then was at Guadalcanal.  One of its mines sank the Japanese destroyer Makigumo.  At Bougainville Island and Okinawa and it rescued survivors of a ship hit by a suicide boat attack.


Monday, October 9, 2017

DeKalb's Housing Shortages

From the March 16, 2017 MidWeek "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"Efforts to secure government approval to the designation of DeKalb as a defense area, in order that the lack of homes may be declared an emergency, did not meet with much success for the DeKalb committee which went to Chicago."

Unfortunately, DeKalb, Illinois, wasn't the only U.S. town to experience housing shortages.


About That Sugar Rationing

From the March 16, 2017, MidWeek   "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago

"Slowly but surely we Americans are being informed as to how sugar will be rationed.

"There are strong hints that other food commodities may be rationed in the future and the sugar plan will be followed in such future rationing."


Shorpy Home Front Photos: Old Trolley Cars,Youth Camps and Harlem

3-12-17  TRANSIT GRILL: 1943.  April 1943.  Baltimore, Maryland.  "Baltimore Transit bus with trolley of 1917 vintage.  Many old cars have been reconditioned because of wartime transportation pressure."  Marjory Collins, OWI.

3-18-17--  KP CUTUPS: 1943.  August 1943.  Arden, New York.  "Interracial activities at Camp Gaylord White, where children are aided by the Methodist Camp Service.  Campers help with the kitchen work."  Gordon Parks, OWI.

3-18-17--  NEW YORK, 1943.  May 1943.  "Woman and her dog in the Harlem section.  Gordon Parks, OWI.  A black woman peering out her window.


Pearl Harbor Survivor Remembered in New Hampshire

From the February 27, 2017, New Hampshire Union-Leader  "Pearl Harbor survivor from Rochester remembered" by Kimberly Haas.

Roland "Sonny" Dagon, 97, a Purple Heart recipient, died February 24, 2017.  He was at Hickam Field with the Army Air Corps, that day.  he remembered the Japanese planes flying in low and ducked under a nearby trailer until he realized the paint shop a few yards away was on fire.

He fled and was wounded by flying shrapnel.

He enjoyed sulky-racing until the age of 88.


Sunday, October 8, 2017

German Air Raid on DeKalb?

From the March 16, 2017, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago

"Because practically all planes have been grounded and because the airport in Waterman has been closed, much mystery envelopes an episode which occurred Saturday night.

"A plane was hear flying over DeKalb three times during the night."

Wonder What That Was All About?  --GreGen

Junk Cars to Help Win the War

From the March 16, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"There are 26,995 worn-out jalopies in automobile graveyards in the state of Illinois.  Before long these old cars will be melted into armaments.

"That is good news for everyone, not to mention residents of neighborhoods in which one of the graveyards is located.  It is estimated that this amount of scrap material will produce 3,680 American tanks to help Uncle Sam's soldiers win the war."


Friday, October 6, 2017

Shorpy Home Front Photos: Roger the Riveter

6-19-17--  ROGER THE RIVETER: 1942:--  October 1942.  "Riveter at work at Douglas Aircraft plant at Long Beach, California.  Color.  Alfred Palmer, OWI.  He was sure taking a lot of pictures here   (See the last two posts.).  There were also men working in war industries.  You hear so much about our Rosie the Riveters.

6-23-17--  CARR FORK CANYON:  1942--  November 1942.  "Bingham Copper Mine, Utah.  Carr Fork Canyon as seen from the "G" Bridge."  Color.  Andrew Feininger, OWI  All sorts of uses for copper during the war.

6-26-17--  ON THE ROAD: 1942  December 1942.  "Highway view along U.S. 40 in Mount Vernon Canyon, Colorado.  Looking east toward Green Mountain, with Shingle Creek below.  Color.  Andreas Feininger, OWI


Thursday, October 5, 2017

Shorpy Home Front Photos: Bombers, Planes & Birthday Cakes

6-3-17 AVENGING ANGEL--  October 1942.  "Woman at work on a bomber motor, Douglas Aircraft Company, Long Beach, California."  Color  Alfred Palmer, OWI.   So, this one's a woman, not a girl.

6-7-17  OUTTA MY WAY: 1942--  June 1942.  "Tank driver --  Fort Knox, Kentucky.  Color.  Alfred Palmer, OWI.  Looks a bit frightening with him wearing those goggles and the way the lighting is.

6-12-17   MAKE A WHOOSH: 1942--  June 1942.  Greenbelt, Maryland. "Grandma Taylor blows out the candles on her 83rd birthday cake while her daughter, Mrs. McCard and grandson look on."  Marjory Collins,, OWI.


Shorpy Home Front Photos: Memorial Day Parade and Lunch

5-29-17  MEMORIAL DAY: 1942--  May 1942.  Stonington, Connecticut.  "An American town and its way of life.  The Memorial Day parade moving down main street.  The small number of spectators is accounted for by the fact that the town's war factories did not close.  The town hall is in the foreground."  Fenno Jacobs, OWI.

Cars are parked on both sides of the street where the parade is.

The War Effort more important than patriotic parades evidently at this time.

5-31-17 EMPTY CALORIES: 1942--  October 1942  "Girl worker at lunch also absorbing California's sunshine.  Douglas Aircraft Company, Long Beach."  Alfred Palmer, OWI.  Color photo.  Comment  Should have called her a woman.


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

A Corn Detasseling Machine for the War Effort

From the August 9, 2017, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1942, 75 Years Ago.

"A corn detasseling machine was delivered this week to Kenneth Furr of Genoa from the shop of Fritz Loptien of Sycamore.  The device makes it possible for four operators to detassel eight rows of corn at one trip across the field.

"The machine moves less than two miles an hour under the power of a Ford engine, which is part of the machine.  The efficiency of the device is indicated by the fact that four detasselers and one driver were said to have accomplished in 80 minutes as much as 23 men working four hours from the ground."

It was a manpower thing.

Just the Thing With All  the Many Men Away in the Military.  --GreGen

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

LST-779-- Part 5: Last U.S. Ship to See the USS Indianapolis

The passing encounter between the LST-779 and USS Indianapolis occurred within 12 hours of the sinking of the cruiser at 0014 30 July.  It was likely the last American vessel to see the doomed ship.

The 779's log noted that after its shooting anti-aircraft exercise, it maintained its course slightly north of Peddie.  That track would put the ship too far away from where the Indianapolis went down to spot survivors.

The LST-779 was launched sideways into the river at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Ships were launched sideways as the river was too narrow to launch by the stern.

I also found out that the LST-779 was the ship that supplied the famous second U.S. flag at the Iwo Jima flag raising made so famous by that photograph.  I'll see what I can find out about that.


Monday, October 2, 2017

LST-779-- Part 4: Last Ship to See USS Indianapolis

From the U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command LST-779 1944-1946.

The LST-779 departed Guam 29 July 18945.  Its log notes:  "Held general quarters to conduct firing exercises" at 1312.  Also in the area at the time was the USS Indianapolis.

The 779 arrived Guinan, Saamar, Philippines 1 August without incident.

The commander of the Indianapolis, Captain Charles B. McVay III noted passing an unknown LST on 29 July:  "We passed an LST headed toward Leyte as we were also, on Sunday," he later recalled.  "They were north of us and they were preparing to go further north to get out of our area to do some anti-aircraft shooting."

This Would Be the LST-779.  --GreGen

LST-779: --Part 3: At Iwo Jima and Okinawa, Famed Flag-Raising Flag From It

The LST-779 participated in the assault and occupation of Iwo Jima in February 1945 as well as the assault and occupation of Okinawa in April,1945.

The famous second flag to be raised on Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima, came from the LST-779.

After the war, it performed occupation duty in the Far East and service in China until early April 1946 when it was decommissioned 18 May 1946.

On December 5, 1947, it was sold to Bosey, Philadelphia.

It warned two battle stars during its service.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

LST-779, Last U.S. Ship to See the USS Indianapolis-- Part 2

Continued from September 2, 2017.

After its commissioning in New Orleans, 3 August 1944, the LST-779 then had a two-week shakedown cruise in St. Andrews Bay, Florida (by Panama City).  It was then loaded with construction materials for forward airfields and also five sections of Tank Landing Craft, LCTs.  On 7 September, it departed for the Pacific Theater.

It passed through the Panama Canal and went to San Diego where it departed 8 October and sailed unescorted to Pearl Harbor, arriving 18 October.  There it unloaded and began intensive training with the Army and USMC in the Hawaii Islands.

On 22 January, it departed Pearl Harbor for the Marianas with ammunition, gasoline, equipment, Marines and 8 Amphibian trucks (DUKWs).