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Herman Berger papers


Held at: Historical Society of Pennsylvania [Contact Us]1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19107

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Herman Berger was born in 1927 and grew up in Philadelphia. He was drafted into the Army in early 1946 and after basic training (at Ft. Meade, Maryland) was sent to clerk typist school (at Camp Lee in Virginia). He was posted briefly to Camp Stoneman in Pittsburg, California, then sent to occupied Japan and assigned to duty as a clerk typist at U.S. military general headquarters in Tokyo, where he served from September 1946 to February 1947. During this time he reached the rank of corporal. Berger returned to the United States in February and was discharged from the Army in March 1947. After military service, Berger attended Temple University in Philadelphia under the G.I. Bill and graduated in 1950 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. His first jobs after graduation included working at the credit department at Gimbel’s department store and as an office manager for a credit card company.

The collection consists of letters from Herman Berger to his mother, Miriam Berger, and other relatives, and from Miriam Berger to Herman, during his military service, from basic training through his posting in Tokyo. Herman Berger’s letters discuss his training, work life, and recreational activities during evenings and weekends. There are approximately 110 letters by Herman Berger and 70 letters by Miriam Berger, and they are housed in Box 1 and Box 2, Folder 1.

In addition to letters, the collection also contains souvenirs and ephemera (Box 2, Folder 2) that Herman Berger sent to his family in Philadelphia from Japan. A list of the items is included in the copy of an official letter that was sent as well. There are also three insignia patches. Most of the programs are from the Ernie Pyle Theatre, Tokyo, and there are also menus, holiday ephemera, brochures, and form letters. There are also several dozen photographs (Box 2, Folder 3) that date from Berger's time in occupied Japan in late 1946 and early 1947. Almost all the photographs are identified with either typed or handwritten information on verso. There are pictures of Berger, alone and with friends; Japanese citizens; and various buildings, including the Ernie Pyle Theatre.

Gift of Herman Berger, 2010-2012.

Accession numbers 2010.051, 2010.063, 2011.002, 2012.001

Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Cary Hutto.
Finding Aid Date
; 2013.
Processing made possible by a generous donation from the Abington Junior High History Club.
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Collection Inventory

Letters from Camp Meade and Camp Lee, circa March-July 1946.
Box 1 Folder 1
Letters from Camp Stoneman, the S. S. Bonita, and Japan, August-September 1946.
Box 1 Folder 2
Letters from Japan, October-November 1946.
Box 1 Folder 3
Letters from Japan, December 1946-January 1947.
Box 1 Folder 4
Letters from Japan, February 1947.
Box 1 Folder 5
Letters from Miriam Berger, July-September 1946.
Box 1 Folder 6
Letters from Miriam Berger, October-November 1946.
Box 1 Folder 7
Letters from Miriam Berger, December 1946-February 1947.
Box 2 Folder 1
Programs, maps, clippings, newsletters, and other ephemera, 1946-1947.
Box 2 Folder 2
Photographs and postcards, 1946-1947.
Box 2 Folder 3

Print, Suggest