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William H. Wallace collection

 Collection — Box: 15.0022 - Box 1
Identifier: 02-15.0022

Scope and Contents

The William H. Wallace Collection was donated to Florida State University by his daughter, Robin Wallace Turco in May 2015.  The centerpiece of the Wallace Collection is a series of forty-six letters and postcards from Josette Asphiotis, a French penpal, to William Wallace from 1944 to 1946.  They met sometime in September of 1944 while William was serving with the Army Air Force in Lyon and continued to correspond until after William returned home to Illinois.  These letters highlight the human experience of World War II.  Both Josette and William use their correspondence as a form of coping with the pressures of wartime service and conditions.

Moreover, these letters provide an example of overcoming the language barrier between American servicemen and French civilians, as well as offer insights into the transformation on the French homefront following the expulsion of the Nazis, French animosity towards the Germans, rationing, and the airmail system.  On a more intimate level, their correspondence is an expression of human desires and an emotional connection solidified in ink.  Also included in the Wallace collection are letters from William’s mother, from a young American woman named Judy Murry, several from Marcel C. Schiess, a friend at Seymour Johnson Field, North Carolina, William’s military records and birth certificate, and also many photographs and postcards from his service in Italy and Egypt.  Taken as a whole, the William H. Wallace Collection offers tremendous insights into the daily life and experiences of an American Airman serving in the European Theater.

Dates

  • Created: 1944-1946
  • Other: Date acquired: 05/26/2015

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to all researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish, exhibit, or broadcast works from the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience must be requested and granted in writing by the director of the Institute.  Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Institute on World War II as the owner of the physical items and the copyright holder.  Possession of a copy of an item does not constitute permission to publish, exhibit, or broadcast it. The Institute on World War II and the Human Experience reserves the right to refuse permission to individuals and publishers who have not complied with its policies. Permission fees must be paid before images are provided. Please contact the director of the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience for current publication and duplication rates.

Biographical or Historical Information

William Hemingway Wallace was born June 7, 1925 in Rantoul, Illinois to Emory L. Wallace and Marie H. Wallace. Prior to being inducted into the Army Air Force, Wallace had just earned his high school diploma. He received basic training in Mississippi before being sent overseas as an aircraft radio operator for the Army Air Force in June 1943.  While serving in the European Theater of Operations, Wallace was assigned to the 62nd Troop Carrier Group, 4th Troop Carrier Squadron, following his unit to Egypt, Italy, France, Greece, Austria, and Switzerland.  Wallace was eventually discharged from the United States Army Air Force on November 18, 1945 and soon after married Evelyn J. Wallace.  He reenlisted as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force on 16 December 1949, serving in the military for another eighteen years before retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel on September 14, 1967.  He spent several years working at Florida State University from 1971-1977 and remained in Tallahassee before his death in 1988.

Note written by Siegler III, Richard J.

Extent

1 boxes

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

The William H. Wallace Collection was donated to Florida State University by Robin Wallace Turco in May 2015.  The centerpiece of the Wallace Collection is a series of forty-six letters and postcards from Josette Asphiotis, a French penpal, to American airman William Wallace from 1944 to 1946.

Arrangement Note

Organized topically into twelve folders.

Source of Acquisition

Turco, Robin Wallace

Method of Acquisition

The William H. Wallace Collection was donated by his daughter, Robin Wallace Turco.

Processing Information

Processed in 2015.

Title
William H. Wallace collection
Author
Richard J. Siegler III
Date
00/00/2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the Institute on WWII and the Human Experience Repository