Sunday, August 23, 2015

Remains on the USAT Walter W. Schwenk

My maternal great-uncle died on 22 July 1944.  He was buried in an individual grave, uncasketed and in a poncho, in Guam No. 2 Cemetery, Plot C, Row 2, Grave 10.  He was disinterred on 28 November 1947 and his skeletal remains were placed in a casket on 19 January 1948.


On 11 February 1948 his remains were placed on a truck and left the U.S. Mausoleum on the island of Saipan.  Saipan is the largest island of the Northern Mariana Islands, a commonwealth of the United States in the western Pacific Ocean.  Two days later his remains arrived at the Port of Saipan.

On 26 February 1948, he departed Saipan aboard the United States Army Transport Walter W. Schwenk.  His remains arrived at Fort Mason in San Francisco on 23 March 1948.  He then traveled by rail to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, arriving on 31 March 1948.


On 10 April 1948 William Bunting arrived at his final resting place, the Beverly National Cemetery in Beverly, New Jersey.

This is a list dated 19 March 1948 of the World War II deceased that were transported on the Walter W. Schwenk and arrived at the Beverly National Cemetery for burial.



Saturday, August 22, 2015

Photo of the Day

This is a photo of my maternal great-grandfather.  It was taken outside of his home on Stuyvesant Avenue in Trenton, New Jersey, probably in the 1930s.
Albert Bunting
(1888-1956)


Thursday, August 20, 2015

MESSAGEFORM

During and after World War II the Graves Registration Service was responsible for the identification and proper burial of American servicemen who died overseas. Policies governing this work were set by The Quartermaster General. The service was responsible for the identification and burial of all Army, Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard personnel who lost their lives as the result of service outside the continental limits of the United States. The American Graves Registration Service took charge of the remains and cemeteries.

After World War II, the U.S. Graves Registration Service began contacting the families of those who died overseas, giving them the option of having their soldier buried in a U.S. cemetery overseas or brought home. My maternal great-grandparents chose to have my great-uncle's remains brought home to New Jersey. A Disinterment Directive was completed on 15 October 1947 and the process to bring his remains home and laid to rest in the Beverly National Cemetery had begun.

My great-grandparents chose to have military funeral services done by a Catholic chaplain at the Beverly National Cemetery for my great-uncle.






























Monday, August 3, 2015

One Photo Makes You Dig A Little Deeper

This is a photo of my grand aunt.  It was found among some pictures that my uncle had taken.  When I looked at it, I realized how very little I knew about her, and I got curious.  How much can you really learn from one picture?
Louise Odgers Ellis
First, I looked at where she was standing.  It was an unfamiliar kitchen to me, but I know it is in her home.  That led me to ask, "Where was her home?"  I started by looking in my uncle's old address book.  I was surprised to see she lived in the same zip code as I do.  Next, I looked her address up on Google Maps.  Her home was less than 10 minutes from where I live.
The photo was taken on 1 June 1978, my grandfather's 60th birthday.  She is holding a bowl of food, so I believe she must have been having a dinner for my grandfather's birthday.
I knew she was born in 1921, but not her actual birthdate.  And I was unsure of the year she died, but I knew it was within the last 10 years.  I looked on my FindAGrave app, put in her name, birth year, and the country and state of where I thought she was buried.  And just like that I now know her birth date and death date, as well as in which cemetery she is.
One picture led to many answers.  It makes me want to keep digging!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Burial Instructions

During and after World War II the Graves Registration Service was responsible for the identification and proper burial of American servicemen who died overseas.  Policies governing this work were set by The Quartermaster General.  The service was responsible for the identification and burial of all Army, Navy, Marine, and Coast Guard personnel who lost their lives as the result of service outside the continental limits of the United States.  The American Graves Registration Service took charge of the remains and cemeteries.

During World War II, identification tags worn by service personnel or papers found on the remains, would, in most cases, serve to identify the body.  In the absence of the metal identification tags, fingerprints and a dental chart were used to establish identity.  A record was then made, giving the exact location of the temporary grave in which the remains were interred. A Report of Interment form provided for the recording of every physical detail which was used as a means of identification.  This was done to lessen any possibilities of error.

After World War II, the U.S. Graves Registration Service began contacting the families of those who died overseas, giving them the option of having their soldier buried in a U.S. cemetery overseas or brought home.  My maternal great-grandparents chose to have my great-uncle's remains brought home to New Jersey.  A Disinterment Directive was completed on 15 October 1947 and the process to bring his remains home and laid to rest in the Beverly National Cemetery had begun.

This Western Union telegram confirms that my maternal great-grandparents chose to have military funeral services done by a Catholic chaplain at the Beverly National Cemetery for my great-uncle.

March 16, 1904 Receipt

This receipt is from the Civil War Pension File of my paternal third great-grandfather and is for some paper hanging that my third great-gra...