Physical Description: 0.05 Linear feet(2 folders)
Language of Material: English.
Scope and Contents
This series contains 34 correspondence from Robert L. "Bob" Biehler, USAAC to Beulah M. "Pete" Peterson during the Second
The correspondence begins on July 19, 1941 in Beaverton, Oregon, where Bob is working while living with his aunt and uncle.
The next letter is written on August 19, 1941 from Fort Lewis, Washington. In it, Bob tells her that he took two exams for
the Air Corps and passed. He writes, "I guess I'm in the Air Coprs, but Pete listen closely, I joined up the army to do my
part and also to get all the good training I could get." He breaks the news to her that joining the Air Corps means that he
agreed to three years of service. He also tells her that he chose to go to Wichita Falls, Texas for training school.
From September 6 to December 1, 1941, he writes from Sheppard Field, the training center in Wichita Falls, Texas. He tells
her how much he loves and misses her, and how he is trying to figure out a way to get back to her. He found out that if he
completes airplane mechanics course then he may be transferred to Alaska or Panama and he does not want that because it would
send him too far from her (he mentions an instructor, Ray Hobbs).
On December 1, 1941 he writes that he is going before the medical discharge board the next day, for what is mentioned in later
letters as chronic headaches.
On December 5, 1941, while home in Omega, Oklahoma on a 14 day furlough, Bob writes, "By gosh hon I guess it's about time
I broke the news to you and golly Pete I hope you're as pleased with it as I am. Pete, I'm coming home to you."
However, the attack on Pearl Harbor and the United States' declaration of war on Japan complicates his efforts to go back
to Oregon. On December 8, 1941, the day after the attack, he writes:
Pete Honey, the situation surely looks bad and I'm not sure now of what's going to happen. Pete you know that I was supposed
to get discharged from the Army sometime within the next 2 or 3 weeks, that was before the Japanese situation came up and
Darling now I don't know what's up, but sweet you may be sure that if they call upon me to go and fight, sweet I'd go if I
had to crawl. Darling this country stands for everything I love and believe in and if they come to the point that they think
I shouldn't be discharged well Darling I'll do my part just like the other boys are doing.
Thursday, December 11, 1941:
"Pete had I known war was going to be declared I'd of taken out for Oregon immediately after they gave me my furlough, but
Hon it's quite funny they haven't called me back to the field and that's what makes me think my discharge will eventually
On this date, Germany and Italy declared war on the US and Congress issued a declaration of war in return later the same day.
On December 14, 1941, he has returned to Wichita Falls, Texas to await his discharge. He responds to her concern about being
so close to the coast with war with Japan having been declared. He also writes that his younger brother, Kenneth, shipped
out to an unknown location with the army and that their family is very worried about him. In this letter, he also tells her
that is medical discharge was approved by the medical officer at Shepaprd Field, but that he is awaiting approval from the
Washington office. This letter includes aggressive language about wanting to defeat Japan and Germany. He tells Pete of his
desire to help his country fight, saying, "Oh Pete always remember if they turn my M.D. down I'm ready to give my country
the very best that's in me."
From December 18, 1941 to February 6, 1942, he writes from the hospital in Wichita Falls while he awaits medical discharge.
During this time he tells her how much he misses and loves her. He discusses wanting to marry her, being worried about Kenneth,
and having to go before the medical board four times. He also discusses his conflict in wanting to be with her again but also
wishing he could serve his country.
On February 22, 1942 he returns home to Omega, Oklahoma and continues to write about how much he misses her. He dicusses his
options for work, saying that he may go to California as he has a sure job there, where in Oregon he would have to spend time
looking for work. He continues to express his regret in not being able to serve in the army. On Febraury 26, 1942, he writes,
"Pete hone I'm just so darn disguested, here all my pals and even my brother are in the army and what am I doing? Sitting
here on the outside."
The last letter in this series is written on March 2, 1942.