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Harold Cooler transcript

 Collection — Container: Single Folder Collections - 2004 Box 2 (04.0046-04.0075), Folder: 04.0051 - Folder 1
Identifier: 04.0051

Scope and Contents

The collection of Harold Cooler contains an oral history transcript of an interview provided by the Reichelt Program for Oral History. Cooler served in the U.S. Army in the 165th Engineer Combat Battalion in the European Theater during World War II.


  • Created: 1943-1947
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1945
  • Other: Date acquired: 02/02/2004


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

Having served in ROTC, Cooler graduated from Clemson College in 1943. He was inducted at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. He attended Engineer Officer Candidate School (OCS) at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. He was assigned to the 165th Engineer Combat Battalion, an African American unit assigned to building roads and bridges at Camp Gordon, Georgia. He discusses race relations from a white perspective. Harold Cooler arrived in Europe at Le Havre, France, and then campaigned into Belgium and Holland. He was involved in the assault across the Rhine in 1944 and was attached to General Montgomery’s 2nd Army. He tells stories of serving as an arbiter between Russians, Latvians, and Germans. He describes the plundering by American soldiers in Germany. After returning to France, his company was charged with guarding German POWS. He discusses how Europeans and black American soldiers received each other. He was sent to Japan in 1947 and assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division as an engineer.


1.00 folders

Language of Materials


Arrangement Note


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

Harold Cooler

Method of Acquisition


Harold Cooler papers
Craig Whittington
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the FSU Special Collections & Archives Repository

116 Honors Way
PO Box 3062047
Tallahassee FL 32306-2047 US