Warren Callahan letters  1951
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Collection Scope and Content Note

This collection contains 5 letters and 1 printed item related to Warren Callahan's Korean War service with the 32nd United States Infantry Regiment. Callahan wrote these letters to his parents in Vinton, Virginia, between April 11 and July 25, 1951. He discussed his time at the front lines and around the 38th parallel, daily life in the military, and, to a lesser extent, military actions on the peninsula.

Callahan wrote his earliest letters from the front lines, mentioning enemy prisoners and nearby artillery fire, and providing updates on the state of the war. On June 7, 1951, he told his parents of an area where Chinese soldiers suffered heavy casualties, reportedly at the hands of the United States Air Force. He later noted the army's construction of "a defense line at the 38° in case they desire to bring this war to a close" (June 24, 1951). He described the recent theft of a camera, and the explosion that killed one of his buddies. Callahan's letter of June 7, 1951, is written on two identical pages, with a portion of a printed 1946 map of Japan on the back.

The collection also contains a "safe conduct pass" with a printed note and signature from Douglas MacArthur to members of the UN forces, promising "good treatment to any enemy soldier desiring to cease fighting." The reverse side of the pass bears printed images of good treatment given to prisoners of war, including medical care, food, and recreation (basketball).

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