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Bolner, Merrill H. (Second World War correspondence collection)
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Arrangement
  • Statement of Potentially Harmful Content
  • Preferred Citation
  • Content Description
  • Conditions Governing Use

  • Contributing Institution: Center for American War Letters Archives
    Title: Merrill H. Bolner Second World War correspondence collection
    source: Bolner, Michael
    Creator: Bolner, Merrill Howard, Sergeant, b. 1924
    Creator: Bolner, Thomas Edward, Agent, 1924-2005
    Creator: Bolner, Donald Eugene, 1925-1995
    Creator: Bolner, Merrill LeRoy, 1904-1993
    Creator: Bolner, Merval Louise, b. 1935
    Creator: Bolner, Gladys C., 1905-1989
    Identifier/Call Number: 2021.195.w.r
    Physical Description: 2.5 Linear Feet (22 folders)
    Date (inclusive): 1942 May 24 - 1982 March 26
    Date (bulk): 1942 May 24 - 1945 November 30
    Abstract: This collection contains correspondence to and from the "Bolner Boys": Sgt. Merrill H. Bolner, USAAC; Agent Thomas E. Bolner, USACIS; and LtCol. Donald E. Bolner, USAAC written during the Second World War.
    Language of Material: English .
    Container: 167
    Container: 1 - 5
    Container: 168
    Container: 6 - 8
    Container: 169
    Container: 9 - 12
    Container: 170
    Container: 13 - 17
    Container: 171
    Container: 18 - 22

    Conditions Governing Access

    This collection is open for research.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Michael Bolner.


    This collection is arranged by author, and chronology.
    • Series 1, Merrill H. Bolner correspondence
    • Series 2, Thomas E. Bolner correspondence
    • Series 3, Donald E. Bolner correspondence
    • Series 4, Mr. Merrill L. and Mrs. Gladys C. Bolner correspondence
    • Series 5, correspondence from various authors

    Statement of Potentially Harmful Content

    This collection may contain materials that are difficult to view, are potentially harmful, or use outdated and culturally insensitive language. Chapman University preserves and makes these materials accessible to researchers to ensure long-term accuracy of these historical records. This repository aims to not promote or otherwise celebrate this content, but to use it for educational and research purposes.
    Please see the National Archives and Records Administration's (NARA) "Statement on Potentially Harmful Content" for more information: https://www.archives.gov/research/reparative-description/harmful-content

    Preferred Citation

    [Item title / description; Box "n" / Folder "n"], Merrill H. Bolner Second World War collection (2021.195.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 approximately 700 correspondence written to and from the "Bolner Boys", Sgt. Merrill H., Agent Thomas E., and Lt Col. Donald E. Bolner during the Second World War. Major contributors to this collection include the Bolner parents, Merrill L. and Gladys C. Bolner who wrote to the Bolner brothers throughout the Second World War.
    Merrill L. Bolner consistently attached newspaper clippings throughout his correspondence and discuessed current US events, military activities in Europe and the Pacific, and home life wit the Bolner brothers. He occassionally expressed critical opinions of the US military and US politics.
    Merrill H. Bolner, the eldest Bolner brother, often wrote his parents and friends in very vague or sanitized language. He seldom wrote explicitly about his military activities. Thomas E. Bolner, in a letterr written September 25, 1945 to his older brother offered words of comfort regarding Merrill H. Bolner's activities in the Philipines. This may indicate that Merrill H. Bolner's content varied greatly depending on who he was writing for unknown reasons.
    Thomas E. Bolner, the middle Bolner brother, shared similar sentiments and beliefs as their father, Merrill L. Bolner. Towards the end of his service time, he also expressed critical views of the USA Military Police and the Criminal Investigation Section.
    Donald E. Bolner, the youngest Bolner brother, wrote more consistently about his military activities when compated to his eldest brother, Merrill H. Bolner. However, he is not as well represented in this collection because approximately 30 letters are present in this collection.
    Other authors include US service members and civilians who wrote predominantly to Sgt. Bolner.
    This collection also contains over 40 newspaper clippings, 4 photographs, and over 20 postcards or celebratory cards.

    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

    Correspondence -- World War, 1939-1945
    World War (1939-1945)
    World War (1939-1945) -- Pacific Area
    World War (1939-1945) -- Europe
    World War (1939-1945) -- Hawaii
    Armed Forces -- Military police
    United States. -- Army. -- Air Corps
    Bolner, Michael