Overview of the Collection
Scope and Contents
Overview of the Collection
Collection Title: Lee C. Schlegel World War II
Bulk Dates: 1941-1944
Schlegel, Lee C., 1919-2004
Physical Description: 2.15
Language of Materials:
Abstract: The Lee C. Schlegel World War II
Collection documents the experiences of United States Army soldier, Lee Cyrus Schegel,
whose enlistment period spanned the first three years of United States involvement in
World War II. The collection consists of approximately two-hundred photographic prints,
a scrapbook, two diaries, and a small amount of personal papers.
Lee Cyrus Schlegel was born on May 26, 1919 in Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania to
parents, Theodore Machmer and Anna Bertha (née Luckenbill) Schlegel. Following high
school, Schlegel was employed as a structural and ornamental metal worker. He married
Dorothy E. Moyer on September 10, 1941, and less than two weeks later, enlisted in the
United States Army at New Cumberland, Pennsylvania.
Schlegel underwent his initial military training at Camp Croft, South Carolina. In
February 1942, he was assigned to Company D, 34th Infantry Division and traveled to Fort
Dix, New Jersey in preparation for overseas movement. By the end of April, Schlegel’s
regiment had set sail for the UK where the division would ready themselves for the
British-American invasion of North Africa known as
, which began in November 1942. Schlegel took part in a number of North
African campaigns, including the
Battle of Hill 609, that
ultimately led to surrender by Axis forces in Tunisia in May 1943. The following
September, the 34th Infantry Division boarded an English ship bound for Italy to take
part in the Allied invasion of the Italian mainland, known as
Schlegel would distinguish himself as an exemplary soldier during this campaign, later
receiving the Silver Star for gallantry in action. As described, "in the face of
this heavy fire and while under full enemy observation, [Schlegel] crawled up a slippery
and treacherous rise to the aid of three wounded men, administered first-aid and stayed
with them until the barrage ceased. He then made two trips with the litter squads,
aiding the evacuation of the men, before returning to resume command of his squad.
Sergeant Schlegel's display of courage and initiative was an inspiration to the men
of his platoon and a credit to the Armed Forces of the United States."
In January 1944, while moving into position at Mt. Trocchio, Italy, Schlegel suffered a
leg injury and was hospitalized at Naples for three months. When he returned to service
in June, the 34th Division had moved through Cisterna, Civitavecchia, and on to Rome
pushing Axis forces north. Schlegel received a furlough notice on July 22, and finally
made it stateside on September 3, 1944.
Lee Cyrus Schlegel passed away on November 16, 2004 at Shillington, Berks County,
Pennsylvania and is buried at Forest Hills Memorial Park, Reiffton, Exeter Township,
Berks County, Pennsylvania.
This collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Genre/Form of Material:
Holli Teltoe, 2015
Conditions Governing Use:
Copyright for unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s)
of this collection has not been transferred to California State University,
Northridge. Copyright status for other materials is unknown. Transmission or
reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond
that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners.
Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of
the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Conditions Governing Access:
The collection is open for research use.
For information about citing items in this collection consult the appropriate style
manual, or see the
Citing Archival Materials
Scope and Contents
Lee C. Schlegel World War II Collection documents the
experiences of United States Army Sergeant, Lee Cyrus Schlegel, whose enlistment period
spanned nearly three years of United States involvement in World War II, beginning in
September, 1941 and ending in September, 1944. The collection consists of approximately
two-hundred photographic prints, a scrapbook, two diaries, and a small amount of
personal papers. Photographs focus on the soldier’s daily life overseas and include
snapshots of fellow soldiers, barracks and other military dwellings, defensive fighting
positions, military vehicles and equipment, village life, and landscapes of North Africa
and Italy, with a small number of pictures taken stateside. The scrapbook consists of
newspaper clippings, camp menus, newsletters, ticket stubs, and postcards, which
document the War from a local, national, and international perspective. Two diaries
penned by Schlegel describe the movements of his regiment, Company D, 34th Infantry
Division, as well as personal observations and feelings about the day-to-day life of a
wartime soldier. The collection is arranged alphabetically.