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Palé (George) Collection of Photographic Slides
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Provenance
  • Biographical Note
  • Processing History
  • Scope and Contents

  • Contributing Institution: William Andrews Clark Memorial Library
    Title: George Palé collection of photographic slides
    Creator: Palé, George John, 1916-1973
    Identifier/Call Number: MS.2016.003
    Physical Description: 3 boxes (1.59 linear feet)
    Date (inclusive): about 1944-1965
    Abstract: This collection contains 35mm color slides taken by George John Palé from about 1944 to 1965 and document his World War II service in Europe and the Philippines, as well as his postwar family life in Arizona.
    Language of Material: English .

    Conditions Governing Access

    This collection is open to researchers.


    This collection was donated to the Clark Library in 2016 by George Palé's grandson, Stephen Gruse (MS.2016.003).

    Biographical Note

    George John Palé was born March 11, 1916 in San Francisco, to Martha Fauré and Paul Palé. Martha had immigrated to the US in 1909 from France, and Paul was the California-born son of French immigrants. After they divorced in 1925, Martha began working as a housekeeper for William Andrews Clark, Jr. in Los Angeles. Clark provided for George's upbringing, including violin lessons and enrollment in St. John's Military Academy. At Clark's death in 1934, attorney's alleged Clark was in the process of adopting the teenager (there is no extant evidence that this was actually the case), and George, at 18 years old, was the beneficiary of the largest amount from the Clark estate.
    George and his first wife, Helen Bajus, met at a party given by Clark for the members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and their families. George attended as one of Clark's guests, while Helen attended with her father, who was a trombonist in the orchestra. They married in 1935 and had 5 children: Joan, Nancy, Clark, Ronald, and Susan.
    During World War II, Palé served in the US Army in the South Pacific, attaining the rank of lieutenant colonel. After the war, he returned to Los Angeles, and owned several different businesses.
    He divorced Helen in 1949 and moved with their 5 children to Maricopa County, Arizona, where he focused on agriculture, growing cotton and later, citrus. He married his second wife, Edna Nasser Palé soon after his divorce, and together, they had another daughter, Teresa. Palé served as a State Representative for Maricopa County from 1966 to 1970 and was responsible for introducting a bill to make the Bola tie the official Arizona state neckwear (this bill passed in 1971). He was also instrumental in a law called "The Pink Cadillac Tax," which imposed additional taxes on cars and luxury items purchased in other states by Arizona residents.
    George John Palé died in Arizona on April 12, 1973, at the age of 57.
    References consulted: - internal Clark Library documentation - Palé family history from Stephen Gruse - "George J. Pale dies at 57," Arizona Republic, April 29, 1973, page 22 - Ancestry.com census and California birth record databases

    Processing History

    This collection was physically processed and described in 2023 by Rebecca Fenning Marschall. During processing, standard sized slides were removed from slide boxes and sleeved in 35mm archival slide sheets. Glass-mounted slides were left in their original 1960s slide case for storage as of June 2023.

    Scope and Contents

    This collection consists of color photographic slides, mostly taken by George John Palé from about 1944 to 1965, and document his time serving overseas in Europe and in the Philippines during World War II, as well as his postwar family life in Arizona. Photographs from both Palé's European and Philippine postings often show him at rest or with friends, and also include many pictures of Philippine civilians, landscapes, villages, and Army vehicles and infrastructure.
    Many slides from Palé's service in Mindanao are stamped "Approved for Mailing US Censor" and were sent home to his first wife Helen Bajus Palé. These slides often contain short captions written by George for Helen on the mounting cardboard, and provide descriptive details and short narratives. Please note that some handwritten descriptions of Philippine civilians and rural life may contain insensitive, outdated, and offensive language.
    Most postwar images in this collection are family photographs of Palé's children and his second wife, Edna Nasser Palé. Some slides from the 1960s are commercial ones, bought during travels to various US national parks and other sites, but most slides in this collection are Palé's.
    The slides are all 35mm format color slides, many of them on Kodachrome film stock. Some earlier slides -- likely from Palé's European tour -- are mounted in glass, as was common in 1940s film processing outside the US.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Philippines--Description and travel
    World War, 1939-1945--Philippines
    World War, 1939-1945--Campaigns--Philippines
    Color slides
    Photography of families--Specimens