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Jackie Voelkl manuscript

 Collection — Box: Single Folder Collections - 2006 Box 1 (06.0001-06.0084), Folder: 06.0054 - Folder 1
Identifier: 06.0054

Scope and Contents

The Jackie Voelkl manuscript contains one folder with a 44-page typed transcript of an oral history interview.  Jackie Voelkl served as a First Sergeant in the Women's Army Corps from 1942 to 1946. She worked as personal secretary to General Robert A. McClure, head of the Army Psychological Warfare Division at General Eisenhower's headquarters in Paris.

Dates

  • Created: 1942 - 2006
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1942-1946
  • Other: Date acquired: 03/27/2006

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to all researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to quote, publish, broadcast or otherwise reproduce from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Associate Dean for Special Collections & Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Florida State University Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.

Biographical or Historical Information

Jackie Voelkl was born July 28, 1921, in Dinuba, California. She grew up during the Great Depression between the homes of her mother, her grandparents, and finally, her father, in Portland, Oregon. She married her high school boyfriend after graduation, though the two eventually separated before Jackie joined the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) in 1942, which later became the Women’s Army Corps (WAC). She joined the army with the intention of serving, earning money, and eventually going home to go to school.

Jackie went to basic training at Fort De Moines, Iowa, in January 1943. She then attended Army Administration school in Conway, Arkansas, to learn to how to serve as a non-commissioned officer (NCO). She became a First Sergeant and went on to teach a cadre of women recruits at the WAC Basic Training Center in Monticello, Arkansas. She later served at an Army Air Corps base in Selma, Alabama, where she turned down the opportunity to become an officer in favor of serving overseas.

She took the French cruise ship Ile de France across the Atlantic and was stationed in Salisbury, England. She worked as secretary to the Base Commander and worked on paperwork in preparation for D-Day. On Christmas Eve 1944 during the Battle of the Bulge, Jackie and seven of her WACs flew to Paris, France, to work at General Eisenhower’s Headquarters. She served as private secretary to General Robert A. McClure, the head of the Army Psychological Warfare Division. The role of this Division was to develop propaganda pamphlets to drop on the German people to convince them to surrender. The Division would also send jeeps close to the front lines with microphones and speakers calling for the Germans to surrender.

Jackie lived and worked in Paris, dating enlisted officers and touring the city. As a First Sergeant, she actually made more money than the enlisted soldiers she dated, earning $120 per month. Jackie anticipated V-E Day in May 1945 because of the correspondences in General McClure’s office and participated in the Parisian celebration. In June 1945, Jackie moved with General McClure and the Psychological Warfare Division to General Eisenhower’s new headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany. They were renamed the Information Control Division and developed pamphlets about concentration camps to drop on and inform the German population of what their country did. She traveled with the general to the other Information Control Division offices in Berlin, Brussels, The Hague, Copenhagen, and Oslo.

Jackie eventually received her orders to go home to the United States because General McClure was going home. She sailed to New York on the Queen Mary, discharged, and flew home to California. Later, she went to Dayton, Ohio, to meet Jim Voelkl, a soldier with whom she had corresponded throughout the war. He proposed and they married in February 1946. They had a son and a daughter. Jackie believed that serving in the Army made her an independent person, and she dedicated the rest of her life to serving US veterans. She was a Post Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and participated in World War II remembrance ceremonies in France. She died June 8, 2014, at the age of 92.

Extent

1.00 folders

Language of Materials

English

Custodial History

Transferred from the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience to FSU Libraries Special Collections & Archives in July 2022.

Source of Acquisition

Jackie Voelkl

Method of Acquisition

Donated

Processing Information

Entered 01/30/2017

Title
Jackie Voelkl manuscript
Author
Gillian Morton
Date
02/06/2017
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
eng

Repository Details

Part of the FSU Special Collections & Archives Repository

Contact:
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