Finding Aid for the Vester A. Benson First World War correspondence 2018.145.w.r

Andrew Harman
Center for American War Letters Archives
Leatherby Libraries
Chapman University
Orange, CA 92866

Contributing Institution: Center for American War Letters Archives
Title: Vester A. Benson First World War correspondence
Creator: Benson, Vester Alvin, Corporal, 1895-1965
source: Jackson, Verlyn, Mr.
Identifier/Call Number: 2018.145.w.r
Physical Description: 0.075 Linear feet (1 folder)
Date: 1918 June 26
Abstract: This collection contains one letter written by Cpl. Vester A. Benson, USA to his brother Floyd and his wife Clara from a base hospital during the First World War.
Condition Description: Some tearing, paper fragile.
Language of Material: English .
Container: WWI 3
Container: 16
Container: 1

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Verlyn Jackson, great nephew of Vester Benson

Biographical / Historical

Corporal Vester Alvin Benson, American Expeditionary Force (12/14/1895 - 1/18/1965) was born and raised in Creston, Iowa. He served during the First World War with Company 'C', 168th Infantry until his injury in 1918. Cpl. Benson wrote to his brother and his wife, Floyd and Claire "Clara" Benson. The little girl mentioned at the end of the letter is their daughter Catherine, the mother of the donor Verlyn Jackson.
A year after the war he married Joy Love Porter on March 22, 1919 and continued to live in Iowa until he passed away in 1965.

Preferred Citation

[Item title / description; Box "n" / Folder "n"], Vester A. Benson First World War correspondence (2018.145.w.r), Center for American War Letters Archives, Chapman University, CA.
For the benefit of current and future researchers, please cite any additional information about sources consulted in this collection, including permanent URLs, item or folder descriptions, and box/folder locations.

Content Description

This collection contains one letter from Corporal Vestor A. Benson, USA to his brother and sister-in-law, Floyd and Clara, from a base hospital in France during the First World War. Cpl. Benson describes in detail the events that led to his injury and his experience in the hospital, including the silent raid, meaning no preliminary artillery fire, by the Germans at dusk while his automatic rifle squad stood their post waiting for them. Upon the German retreat, one let loose an "egg," or grenade, and it exploded at Cpl. Benson's feet. He received shrapnel in his feet, left leg, and left arm and required several surgeries to remove the half-pound of shrapnel that led the nurse to call him "Iron Man." Also mentioned was the experience of the drugs given him for surgery and taking x-rays of his body.

Conditions Governing Use

There are no restrictions on the use of this material except where previously copyrighted material is concerned. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all permissions.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

World War (1914-1918)
World War (1914-1918) -- France
Battle casualties
World War (1914-1918) -- Casualties
World War (1914-1918) -- Hospitals.
Jackson, Verlyn, Mr.