George W. and Pauline Murray, Jr., papers
Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. 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
George W. Murray, Jr., was born on October 7, 1920, in Newark, Delaware, to George and Gertrude Fader Murray. He was a World War II and Korean War veteran serving in the Army Air Corps (Air Force) and later the Air National Guard. Murray worked at Continental-Diamond Fibre Co. and the Chrysler Tank Plant in Newark. He retired from the auto plant after a long career as a tool and die maker.
George married Pauline E. Murray (née Aument). They had two children, George W. Murray III and David Murray. George W. Murray, Jr., died on November 10, 2010.
Pauline E. Aument was born on August 9, 1919, to George W. and Anna Aument. She lived in Newark, Delaware, and died on February 10, 1997. She married George W. Murray, Jr., in the early 1940s and had two children, George W. Murray III and David Murray.
"George Murray, 90." Newark Post. http://www.newarkpostonline.com/news/local/article_4574d402-e3a3-521b-aee0-2cc29357b9d5.html?mode=story (accessed August 21, 2014)."U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-Current." Ancestry.com Library Edition. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2011. http://search.ancestrylibrary.com (accessed September 28, 2014).
This collection documents the lives of Newark, Delaware, residents George W. Murray, Jr., and Pauline E. Murray during World War II. The collection is small, yet it gives a glimpse of both military service and the homefront experiences of the young married couple during war. Included are handwritten correspondence exchanged by the married couple while George Murray was stationed at Army Air Force bases on the continental United States and in Europe, illustrating life both at home and abroad during wartime. The collection also features photographs, Air Force Technical School study guides, informational pamphlets, and other items collected by George during his time in the military as well as greeting cards from family and friends, and postcards/souvenirs from travel.
This small collection is arranged in five series.
Series I. contains material belonging to Pauline E. (Aument) Murray including correspondence from Group Hospital Service (also known as Blue Cross) regarding membership rates and a book of handwritten verses from historical figures titled "A Jumbled Anthology"created by Pauline in high school. There is also assorted material kept by Pauline including a newspaper clipping on apprentice training for veterans, a voting card addressed to George W. Murray, a Christmas letter from the vice president of the Continental-Diamond Fibre Company (where George later worked), and car registration information addressed to Pauline's father, George W. Aument. The series also contains pamphlets, correspondence, receipts, and advertisements relating to Pauline's membership with the Nobility Silver Company, a purveyor of silver-plated flatware, beginning in 1941, when she registered prior to her marriage to George W. Murray.
Series II. contains correspondence from 1943-1945, organized chronologically and by the sender. The bulk of the letters were exchanged between George W. and Pauline Murray while George was serving as an aircraft mechanic, at the rank of Corporal, in the Army Air Force. Pauline's letters discussed her everyday life in Newark and mentioned family developments, social events attended, movies, church attendance, hobbies, and work. In each letter, written from September 1943 through October 1945, she strongly expressed her love for George and how much she looked forward to him returning from the war.
George's letters began in June 1943 while he was stationed at Selfridge Field, Michigan, with the 97th A.B. Squadron, and continue through July and August at the Army Air Base in Jacksonville, Florida. The letters began again in October, when he was stationed at Bluethenthal Field, North Carolina, with the 84th Fighter Squadron. The letters ended in November while he was stationed in Northern Ireland, and picked up again in May 1945, while he was stationed in Germany. George's letters to Pauline related much of the same sentiment and also discussed performing duties, events on the various bases on which he was stationed. His letters primarily discussed when he was going to write back, how often he was receiving Pauline's correspondence, and related his concern about the long hours that she was working. In their correspondence, both Murrays expressed confusion and frustration with the uncertainty around the end of George's assignment in Europe and return home, especially following the end of the war in Europe.
Series II. also contains letters to George W. Murray from family members and friends, including a number of letters from Pauline's parents, George W. and Anna Aument, and George's mother Gertrude. The content of these letters also related to events occurring at home and the well-being of family members.
Series III. contains material relating to George W. Murray's service as a mechanic in the Army Air Force. Included are photographs of George with fellow servicemen, the grounds of air bases, and aircraft maintained by Murray. Included with the photographs are cards, published in Nazi Germany and presumably acquired by George while he was stationed in Germany, featuring images of sailplanes being flown near The Wasserkuppe in the Rhön Mountains. The series also contains annotated study guides owned by Murray while he was attending the Air Corps Technical School, Department of Mechanics, in 1941. Other items include artifacts owned by Murray while in the service, a ration card, and publications from World War II such as pamphlets about Great Britain and Northern Ireland, a guide for returning to civilian life after service in the military, and a propaganda pamphlet lampooning the leaders of the Axis nations.
Series IV. contains greeting cards addressed to George and Pauline Murray from family and friends. The cards are organized by occasion (Christmas, Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, anniversaries, and generic greeting cards). Included are unique World War II-era greeting cards, including cards published specifically for deployed members of the United States Armed Forces. Series V. features postcards, souvenirs, and other ephemera related to the Murrays' travels, some likely collected by George while he was in the service. The items are organized by location.
- I. Pauline Murray
- II. Correspondence
- III. George W. Murray, Jr., military service
- IV. Greeting cards
- V. Travel
Boxes 1-2: Shelved in SPEC MSS Record Center Cartons
Gift of Justin and Niki de Leon, Regina McCormack, and Katya Samoteskul, August 2013.
Processed by Daniel Thompson, September 2014. Encoded by Daniel Thompson and E. Evan Echols, September 2014.
- World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, American
- World War, 1939-1945--Aerial operations--Personal narratives
- World War, 1939-1945--Social aspects--United States
- World War, 1939-1945--Propaganda
- Tourism--United States
- University of Delaware Library Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
- Finding Aid Date
- 2014 September 18
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research.
- Use Restrictions
Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections, University of Delaware Library, http://library.udel.edu/spec/askspec/
Contains a newspaper clipping, a voting card addressed to George W. Murray, and a Christmas letter from the vice president of the Continental-Diamond Fibre Company.
This folder contains examples of V-mail (Victory Mail) letters which, during World War II, were photographed, transported as microfilm, and then re-printed onto paper for the recipient in order to expedite correspondence with soldiers stationed abroad.
Contains news clippings mailed with a letter dated September 18th
Contains a uniform cap and an engraved leather notebook cover.
Contains unique World War II-era greeting cards, including a card with a miniature Bible attached.