Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Russell G. Schlagal Letters, 1944-1946

Finding aid created by
Meg Hixon, October 2012

Summary Information
Title: Russell G. Schlagal letters
Creator: Schlagal, Margery, 1912-1974
Inclusive dates: 1944-1946
Extent: 0.75 linear feet
Abstract:
This collection is made up of letters that Lieutenant Russell G. Schlagal wrote to his wife Margery while serving in the United States Army during World War II. Schlagal discussed his experiences in India and on the island of Tinian, and he often illustrated his letters with ink sketches and watercolor paintings.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu


Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1998. M-4000.3.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Copyright:

Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information:

Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.

Preferred Citation:

Russell G. Schlagal Letters, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Arrangement

The collection is arranged chronologically.


Biography

Russell G. Schlagal was born in Ohio on December 29, 1904. He and his wife Margery (1912-1974) lived in Dayton, Ohio, in 1940, where he owned a radio business. During World War II, Schlagal served as a lieutenant with the 28th and 77th Air Service Group in India and on the island of Tinian; he returned home in mid-1946. He and Margery had at least two children, Nancy and Bob. Russell G. Schlagal died in Virginia on September 3, 1995.


Collection Scope and Content Note

This collection is made up of letters that Lieutenant Russell G. Schlagal wrote to his wife Margery while serving in the United States Army during World War II. Schlagal discussed his experiences in India and on the island of Tinian, and he often illustrated his letters with ink sketches and watercolor paintings.

Russell G. Schlagal regularly wrote letters home to Margery, who remained in Dayton, Ohio, during the war. He responded to news of family members and acquaintances, and shared his love for Margery. Most letters concern Schlagal's daily experiences with the 28th Air Service Group in India (December 1944-April 1945) and on the island of Tinian in the Northern Mariana Islands (June 1945-March 1946). In India, he occasionally mentioned his encounters with local residents, and he described the wildlife, the scenery, and local customs. He frequently attended USO shows and movies. Schlagal later discussed his life on Tinian, where he remained until the spring of 1946. He continued to attend performances and films, and also participated in underwater sightseeing. After the end of the war, Schlagal wrote about the possibility and timing of his return home.

Schlagal illustrated some of his letters with ink sketches, ink drawings, and watercolor paintings. These depict buildings, objects, and scenery from India and Tinian. Occasionally, he used stationery with pre-printed scenes, and his letter of December 29, 1945, has a manuscript map of Tinian. On February 24, 1946, Schlagal composed a partially pictographic letter about his anticipated return home. He alternated words with pictures of animals, his wife, himself, and the island of Tinian.

Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • Families of military personnel--United States.
    • India--Description and travel.
    • Tinian (Northern Mariana Islands)
    • United Service Organizations (U.S.)
    • United States. Army Air Forces. Air Service Group, 28th.
    • United States. Army--Military life.
    • World War, 1939-1945--India.
    • World War, 1939-1945--Pacific Area.
    Subjects - Visual Materials:
    • Dwellings.
    • East Indians.
    • India.
    • Pinup art.
    • Tinian (Northern Mariana Islands)
    • Women--United States.
    Contributors:
    • Schlagal, Russell G., 1904-1995.
    Genre Terms:
    • Drawings (visual works)
    • Letters (correspondence)
    • Manuscript maps.
    • Sketches.
    • Watercolors (paintings)
    Contents List
    Container / Location Title
     
    Correspondence [series]
    Box   1 Folders   1-24
     December 7, 1944-September 30, 1945
    Box   2 Folders   1-13
     October 1, 1945-May 21, 1946, and  undated