My mother told me that her grandfather, Charles Curnow Ladner, fought in World War I and was missing in action. She said her grandmother believed that he suffered from shell shock and would one day come walking through the door. He never did return from the war, and my mother never knew what happened to him. I decided to find out. World War I service records are available, so I got a copy of my great grandfather’s dossier. His service records contained not only service information, but also letters that my great grandmother, Emily, had written.
Want to know how to cook for hundreds of soldiers or sailors? While recently searching for a coworker whose grandfather was a Navy cook on the U.S.S. Missouri, I stumbled across these little gems online. Just Google "U.S. Army" or "Navy Cookbook," and you will find out exactly how much it took to feed a unit of hungry fighting men. With minimum portions of about twenty and usually around one hundred or more; the sheer amounts of ingredients are a bit hard to fathom.
School Teachers: This Is Why We Perform Background Checks
William Clarke Quantril was a Confederate raider, bushwhacker, guerilla leader, and...school teacher? William Quantril was born in 1837 in Ohio and was well educated to follow in his father’s footsteps to become a school teacher. After his father’s death, he became a teacher at the age of sixteen in 1853. However, he soon switched jobs to a lumberyard worker before he shot a man claiming self-defense. This foreshadowed his later life. He was soon released as there were no witnesses.
When we think of the Volkswagen Bug, we often think of the Disney movie series Herbie, which is almost an American icon. But what were the origins of this famous vehicle? While researching for a patron with German ancestry, who was in the auto industry, I found out that the Volkswagen Type 1, more commonly known as the Beetle, was built for the Third Reich in Nazi Germany.
June 6, 2014 marks the 70th anniversary of D-Day for “Operation Overlord” or the beginning of the Battle of Normandy. The name “D-Day” simply meant the “Day” day. The weather played an important role in the choice of day. A clear day was needed to prevent poor visibility for both the air crews and choppy seas for the landing parties, so the weather on June 6, 1944 made it the perfect invasion day.
While working with one of the Midwest Genealogy Center’s archival collections, the Titus Family Collection, I came across an interesting bit of history. In the course of my transcription of letters written by Private Square Holt during the Civil War, I came across a reference to a “gun that fired a thousand pound shot.” This description intrigued me, so I decided to look into the gun and to find the history of this “monster” cannon.
During a recent patron request, I was asked to look up the service records of an aviator who flew in World War II and was stationed on the U.S.S. Enterprise. I knew that the Midwest Genealogy Center would have many different types of materials to help with this request, and I was right.