Brothers Served in France during World War I

Leon Russel Crawford

 

Military 26 Apr 1917 (age 23) and was appointed wagoner 2nd class gunner 25th A.A. Battery 1st A.A. Sector; Dodge City, Ford, Kansas, United States
Military from 31 Mar 1918 to 31 May 1918 (from age 24 to 24) as wagoner at St. Misner 2nd Battle of the Marne; France
Military from 28 Jun 1918 to 8 Nov 1918 (from age 24 to 24) as wagoner in the outer defense of Paris; France
Military 20 Feb 1919 (age 25) U.S.S. Ohio; Brest, Bretagne, France
Military 15 Mar 1919 (age 25) sent telegram to parents saying had arrived and all was well; Camp Stuart, Virginia, United States
Military 28 Mar 1919 (age 25) received an honorable discharge from the United States Army; Camp Funston, Kansas

Marion Richmond Crawford

Military 23 Apr 1917 (age 21) enlisted in U. S. Army serving with Battery D of the 13th Field Artillery; Dodge City, Ford, Kansas, United States
Military 1918 (about age 23) with Battery D of the 13th Field Artillery; Camp Green, Charlotte, North Carolina
Military Oct 1918 (about age 23) fought in the Battle of the Argonne Forest as a member of the 13th Field Artillery; France
Military 18 Jul 1919 (age 23) U.S.S. Zeelandia; Brest, Bretagne, France
Military 6 Aug 1919 (age 23) was discharged from service at Camp Dodge, Iowa, United States
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Proud to Serve: Eugene Crawford

When I visited with my dad, Eugene Crawford, about his military record the dates and locations didn’t make sense when put together with his high school graduation. However, one comment stuck with me: “I flunked out of radio school.” This coming from someone who would become a physics teacher at the college level and who would obtain his amateur radio license.

For the longest time, other than his military discharge (on file in the Record of Deeds office in Dodge City), this was all I had in regards to his military service. That’s because we were told that military records from World War I and World War II had been lost in a fire. Thus, I didn’t try to obtain his full military file. That changed when I learned a few years ago that the navy records exist. Now that I have his military record, all of the dates and locations make sense.

Military 6 Feb 1945 (age 17) passed the Eddy Test and was technically qualified for Radio Technician training in the U.S. Navy
Military 15 Feb 1945 (age 17) enlisted in the United States Naval Reserves; U.S. Naval Reserve Station, Kansas City, Jackson County, Missouri, United States
Military 15 Feb 1945 (age 17) U.S. Navy Recruiting Station, Kansas City, Jackson County, Missouri, United States
Military 16 May 1945 (age 17) was received; the U.S. Naval Reserve Station, Dodge City, Ford, Kansas, United States
Graduation 17 May 1945 (age 17) Dodge City Senior High School, Dodge City, Ford, Kansas, United States
Military 20 May 1945 (age 17) was recalled to active duty; U.S. Naval Reserve Station, Kansas City, Jackson County, Missouri, United States
Military 21 May 1945 (age 17) was transferred to the; U.S. Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Lake, Illinois, United States
Military 21 May 1945 (age 17) reported for active duty; U.S. Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Lake, Illinois, United States
Military 9 Jul 1945 (age 17) was granted recruit leave from 9 Jul 1945 to 14 July 1945; U.S. Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Lake, Illinois, United States
Military 20 Jul 1945 (age 17) was transferred to the Navy Training College for study of pre-radio material; Wright Junior College, Chicago, Cook, Illinois, United States
Military 15 Aug 1945 (age 17) was transferred to the Naval Training School (EE & RM) for a course of instructions; U.S. Naval Training Center, Gulfport, Harrison, Mississippi, United States
Military 4 Sep 1945 (age 17) was discharged from class V-6 US Naval Reserve
Military 5 Sep 1945 (age 17) enlisted in the U.S. Navy as a seaman 1st class radio technician; Naval Training Center, Gulfport, Harrison, Mississippi, United States
Military 5 Sep 1945 (age 17) reported for active duty in the U.S. Navy; Gulfport, Harrison, Mississippi, United States
Military 23 Oct 1945 (age 17) was discharged this date for convenience of the government; Naval Training Center, Gulfport, Harrison, Mississippi, United States
Military 23 Oct 1945 (age 17) voluntarily enlisted in Class V6 US Naval Reserve; Gulfport, Harrison, Mississippi, United States
Military 4 Jan 1946 (age 18) was transferred to the Naval Training Center; Great Lakes, Lake, Illinois, United States
Military 1 May 1946 (age 18) was transferred to receiving station; Shoemaker, California
Military 20 May 1946 (age 18) was transferred for duty aboard the USS Oneida (APA-221). The USS Oneida (APA-221) was a Haskell-class attack transport
Military 1 Jun 1946 (age 18)  served outside the continental limits of the United States in the Pacific Ocean around Guam and Samar from 1 Jun 1946 to 16 July 1946 aboard the USS Oneida (APA-221)
Military 24 Jul 1946 (age 18) was transferred to the receiving station; Treasure Island, San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States
Military 1 Aug 1946 (age 18) received an honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy as Seaman First Class V-6 USNR; U.S. Naval Personnel Separation Center, Norman, Cleveland, Oklahoma, United States

 

Even though his military records do not say that he flunked out of radio school, there is a hint to that buried in the records. In September 1945, Eugene’s branch of service and rank changed as he became a 1st class radio technician. Eugene was transferred to Gulfport, Mississippi where the Navy had a Naval Training School (Radio) during WWII. Then on the 23rd of October, Eugene was discharged from the U.S. Navy – for the convenience of the government. Eugene was then enlisted (re-enlisted) in the U.S. Naval Reserves and transferred (back) to the Great Lakes Naval Training Center.

WWI Group Pics

Photo Album Finds

Names on back of photo

Emrich – Rebmrnovich – ? – Scott – Clark – Pilgrim – CRAWFORD

Rowe – Cline – Dweggins – Hiller – Madsen – Kaufman – Garlick

(person with arrow is Leon Crawford)

 

 

Names on back of photo:

Scott – Belizzi – Terry – Saylor – Geffeny – Beacacek

Croathers – Cole – Wooten – Blevins – Chapman

Morton – Stampler – Cartwright – CRAWFORD – Garlick

Oliver – Jacobson – Lacy – Ferguson

(person with arrow is Leon CRAWFORD)

 

 

 

 

Patriots (and Tories)

As we celebrate Independence Day, I began thinking about my ancestors that participated to make today possible.

My great grandmother, Josie Hammond, joined the Daughters of the American Revolution thru her great-grandfather, Jason Hammond. At the time, it was believed that Jason fought for Connecticut. Unfortunately, there are several Jason Hammonds in Connecticut at the time and records make it difficult to know for sure which one served. Thus, my DAR application is thru Jason’s father, Nathaniel Hammond. Nathaniel Hammond didn’t fight for the cause but helped the fight by providing supplies to the troops.

I also have a verifiable revolutionary ancestor on my mother’s side: William Buckles. William served in the Berkeley (Virginia) militia 1778. Other potential revolutionary ancestors include Cheney Ricketts (Pennsylvania), Oliver White (Massachusetts), George Thurston (Rhode Island), George Crandall (New York). With most of my lines going back to colonial New England or Virginia, it is likely that I will discover more patriots as I verify new ancestors.

Besides having numerous patriot ancestors, I have at least one Tory ancestor. My great-great grandmother, Julia Harding, was the daughter of William G. Harding. William Harding migrated to Iowa from New Brunswick, Canada – where Julia was born. The Harding family settled in New Brunswick shortly after the end of the revolutionary war on a land grant from the King. Prior to the revolution, the family was living in the state of New York.

I look forward to discovering more ancestors from this time period – Patriots or Tories.

 

Military Record FOUND!

crawford-eugene-b1927-1945-us-navyWhen it comes to military records from World War II, the saying ‘Time Heals’ has some merit. During my early days of researching my family history, I was told that my dad’s military file probably didn’t exist. This wasn’t because someone threw it away but because of a fire in the building housing the personnel files. Thus, I had been content with a copy of his discharge record from the Ford County Recorder of Deed’s Office. That was until recently, when I found out some files survived and other files are being reconstructed. Thus, I tried again — AND — received his complete file. I am so thankful that I sought out this record! Below is his military history as outlined by various documents in his file.

Eugene David Crawford passed the Eddy Test and was technically qualified for Radio Technician training in the U.S. Navy on 6 Feb 1945. The Eddy Test was a test given to identify men with the capability and aptitude for being trained as electronics maintenance technicians in the U.S. Navy.

Eugene enlisted in the United States Naval Reserves on 15 Feb 1945 at U.S. Naval Reserve Station in Kansas City, Missouri.  On 15 Feb 1945 at the U.S. Navy Recruiting Station in Kansas City, Jackson County, Missouri, he was ordered to active duty without pay and to proceed to home at 512 Avenue ‘G”, Dodge City, Kansas and upon arrival he should consider himself released from active duty to await further orders.

On 16 May 1945, Eugene was received at the U.S. Naval Reserve Station in Dodge City, Ford County, Kansas.  On 17 May 1945, he graduated from Dodge City Senior High School in Dodge City, Ford, County Kansas. He was recalled to active duty on 20 May 1945 at U.S. Naval Reserve Station in Kansas City, Missouri.

Eugene was transferred to the U.S. Naval Training Center in Great Lakes, Illinois on 21 May 1945. He reported for active duty on 21 May 1945 at the U.S. Naval Training Center in Great Lakes, Illinois. He was granted recruit leave from 9 Jul 1945 to 14 July 1945 at the U.S. Naval Training Center in Great Lakes, Illinois.

On July 20, 1945, Eugene was transferred to the Navy Training College for study of pre-radio material at Wright Junior College in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. He was transferred to the Naval Training School (EE & RM) for a course of instructions at U.S. Naval Training Center in Gulfport, Mississippi on 15 Aug 1945. He was discharged from class V-6 US Naval Reserve on 4 Sep 1945. Eugene enlisted in the U.S. Navy as a seaman 1st class radio technician on 5 Sep 1945 at Naval Training Center in Gulfport, Mississippi. He reported for active duty in the U.S. Navy on 5 Sep 1945 in Gulfport, Mississippi.

Eugene was discharged from the U.S. Navy on 23 Oct 1945 for convenience of the government at Naval Training Center in Gulfport, Mississippi. Eugene voluntarily enlisted in Class V6 US Naval Reserve on 23 Oct 1945 in Gulfport, Mississippi. On Jan 4, 1946, he was transferred to the Naval Training Center at Great Lakes, Illinois. (In talking about his military experience, dad said he ‘flunked out’ of radio school. This is somewhat ironic in that Eugene Crawford majored in science in college and spent most of his career teaching science — including physics. As a retiree, Eugene earned his Amateur Radio license.)

oneida2On the first of May, 1946, Eugene was transferred to receiving station in Shoemaker, California. Eugene was transferred for duty aboard the USS Oneida (APA-221) under Captain Harry A. Guthrie, U.S. Navy on 20 May 1946. The USS Oneida (APA-221) was a Haskell-class attack transport. He served outside the continental limits of the United States in the Pacific Ocean around Guam and Samar from 1 Jun 1946 to 16 July 1946 aboard the U.S.S. Oneida (APA-221) During this time, the U.S.S. Oneida participated in Operation Magic Carpet, returning veterans to the states. (In talking about his shipboard experience, dad said one of the soldiers being transported home was a former grade school classmate who had moved away from Dodge City.)

On 24 July 1946, Eugene was transferred to the receiving station at Treasure Island in San Francisco, San Francisco County, California. He  received an honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy as Seaman First Class V-6 USNR on 1 Aug 1946 in Norman, Oklahoma.

 

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Leon Russell Crawford

Leon Russell Crawford was born in Newton Kansas on the 6th of Feb 1894.

According to Leon’s wife, Winnie Crawford, the family lived in Oklahoma when Leon and his sister Bernice were young. Winnie stated:

Judson Crawford worked on a ranch in Oklahoma because Josie’s sister and husband were there. The family all almost died. Judson was extremely ill. The children, Bernice (over 2) and Leon (1) almost died because of poor diet.

Documentation for this story has not been found. However, Josie’s sister and husband did live in Oklahoma.

wright1913_third_ward_school_dodge_city_ks_14782851522

The family was living in Dodge City by his 6th birthday. As a child, Leon attended the Third Ward School that was located on Boot Hill.

 

wwiLeon and his brother, Marion, served in the U.S. Army during World War I. Leon served as a 2nd class gunner in the 25th AA Battery of the first AA. In April and May 1918, his unit was at St. Misner during the 2nd Battle of the Marne. The unit then served as part of the outer defense of Paris. (Pictured: Homer Short & Leon Crawford on back row, Russel Horton (brother-in-law) and Marion Crawford (brother) on front row.)

On March 15, 1919, Leon sent a telegram to his parents stating that he had arrived in Camp Stuart, Virginia and that all was well.

crawford-leon-b1894-1919-telegram

Leon was honorably discharged from the military on 28 March 1919.

redrosesLeon married Winnie Currey on Christmas Eve 1919 at her sister’s house. After their marriage, the couple lived at 504 Avenue G. Ever the romantic, Leon purchased a red rose for Winnie for their 1st anniversary. Each year he added a rose until he was purchasing a dozen roses. Each subsequent year, Winnie would receive a dozen red roses from her husband on Christmas Eve.

1960-Crawford-Leon-Switchman-retires-web2After serving during WWI, Leon returned to work with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railroad working as a switchman in the railroad yard. Leon did not appear on the payroll for the AT&SF Railroad during Oct. 1923. According to his wife, Winnie Crawford, there was also a time during the depression when he was also laid off. She said that the railroad would call Leon in to work when needed. Thus, the family had to maintain a telephone so they could receive those phone calls. By 1953, Leon had been promoted to foreman for the AT&SF. Leon retired from the railroad in May of 1960. During his employment with the railroad, Leon was a member of the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen and received his 50 year pin in Feb of 1967.

By 1953, Leon and Winnie were living in the Crawford family home at 911 Second. This home was the nucleus of Winnie and Leon’s family. The home boasted a large room for the kitchen that housed a long pine table. Family gatherings took place around this table, including Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. Often times Winnie’s friend, Mary Hoffman, or a lone college student who couldn’t go home would join the table. These celebrations always involved a lot of food – most of it cooked in that kitchen. One of the rules for the children at the table is that we had to try everything. At some point, that rule was relaxed to ‘you have to try everything but the oysters’. The scalloped oysters were a favorite Thanksgiving and Christmas dish of the adults but disliked by the children at the table. By not requiring the children to try the oysters, the adults discovered that it left more for them.

Even though I never witnessed Leon cooking, he was at home in the kitchen. He would often set the table while his wife was preparing the food. One of his favorite sayings in the kitchen was in regards to clean-up when he would say ‘I’ll do the plates’ – referring to the paper plates that had been used for the meal. Ironically, Leon often helped with the dishes – even when paper plates weren’t used.

If one listened closely at that table, Leon would sometime talk about his family. Unfortunately, as a child, I wasn’t always paying attention. I do remember two of his stories.

The first family story involved the land south of the river (Arkansas River) in what was known as South Dodge. Leon would talk about helping his ‘Uncle Jimmy’ farm that land. At the time, I had no idea who ‘Uncle Jimmy’ was. It was only after working on the family history that I realized that the ‘Uncle Jimmy’ from Leon’s youth was his great-uncle, James H. Crawford. James H. Crawford did own a lot of land south of the Arkansas River.

The second family story was told at a Sunday dinner. It was girl scout Sunday and I had attended church with my girl scout club instead of going with the family. That Sunday, we attended the First Presbyterian church in Dodge City. During dinner, we were talking about my experience and I remember Leon saying that his family was Presbyterians. This little tidbit has not been verified – but many of the Crawford families in early Kentucky were Presbyterian.

crawford-leon-b1894-1969-winnie2Leon and Winnie celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 1969. For their anniversary, Winnie gave Leon a wedding ring. Leon wore this ring until his death in October 1976.

Veterans History Project

In researching my father’s military service aboard the USS Oneida (APA-221) during World War II, I stumbled across the Veterans History Project. Within that collection, I found an interview with John H. Garner, seaman 1st class, US Navy. Mr. Garner’s experience is similar to my fathers: training at Great Lakes Naval Station and service aboard the USS Oneida (APA-221).

I am thankful for the work of the Library of Congress to organize and preserve these resources and for groups like the Daughters of the American Revolution and other for conducting the interviews. Thru the Veterans History Project, the experiences of our veterans is being preserved.

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