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Guide to the World War II San Diego State College Servicemen's Correspondence Collection
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Biographical Information:
  • Access Terms
  • Administrative Information
  • Scope and Contents

  • Overview of the Collection

    Collection Title: World War II San Diego State College Servicemen's Correspondence Collection
    Dates: 1941-1946
    Identification: MS-0369
    Creator: Post, Lauren Chester, 1899-1976
    Physical Description: 4.59 linear ft
    Language of Materials: English
    Repository: Special Collections & University Archives
    5500 Campanile Dr. MC 8050
    San Diego, CA, 92182-8050
    URL: http://library.sdsu.edu/scua
    Email: askscua@mail.sdsu.edu
    Phone: 619-594-6791
    Other Information:
    Additional information may be found at http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/nas/streaming/dept/scua/SPECCOLL/Collections/WWIIServicemensCorrespondence/AztecNewsletterComplete.pdf

    Biographical Information:

    A native of Rayne, Louisiana, Lauren Post was professor of geography at San Diego State from 1937-1969. He was educated at the University of California and Louisiana State University, and taught at San Francisco State and at Louisiana State before coming to San Diego State. Post is remembered for his Aztec News Letter in which he corresponded with Aztec servicemen and women during World War II.
    Immediately after Pearl Harbor and as the War progressed, Aztec students were soon scattered all over the globe, disconnected and separated from their college, their friends, their loved ones, and their former lives. In the spring of 1942, Dr. Post, a veteran of World War I, decided to try a "news service experiment" intended to provide information about the locations of current and former Aztecs dispersed around the world. The Aztec News Letter thus became a crucial lifeline throughout the War for Aztec servicemen and women facing difficulty and danger wherever they were stationed. Lauded as one of the first of its kind in the nation, the Aztec News Letter premiered in May of 1942 and was released monthly until its 48th issue in March of 1946. By then, The Aztec News Letter circulated to more than 3,000 service and home front readers. The project and the letters that made it possible would forever characterize the Aztec spirit during wartime. Not only are the letters historically significant; they also offer a unique perspective about San Diego State during a global crisis.

    Access Terms

    This Collection is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.

    Corporate Name:

    San Diego State College--Alumni and alumnae--Correspondence
    San Diego State University--Faculty--Correspondence

    Genre/Form of Material:

    Personal Papers

    Personal Name:

    Adams, Jane Ford--Correspondence
    Adams, John R., 1900-1994--Correspondence
    Post, Lauren C.--Correspondence

    Topical Term:

    World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, American

    Administrative Information

    Conditions Governing Use:

    The copyright interests in these materials have not been transferred to San Diego State University. Copyright resides with the creators of materials contained in the collection or their heirs. The nature of historical archival and manuscript collections is such that copyright status may be difficult or even impossible to determine.  Requests for permission to publish must be submitted to the Head of Special Collections, San Diego State University, Library and Information Access. When granted, permission is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical item and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder(s), which must also be obtained in order to publish. Materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials.

    Conditions Governing Access:

    This collection is open for research.

    Preferred Citation:

    Identification of item, folder title, box number, World War II San Diego State Servicemen's Correspondance Collection, Special Collections and University Archives, Library and Information Access, San Diego State University.

    Related Materials:

    John Adams Papers, 1919-1987 (Series 4: Personal)
    Lauren C. Post Papers, 1917-1977
    Omega Xi Newsletter, 1943-1945 (Uncataloged Periodicals, Series: University Archives)
    The Aztec News Letter, 1942-1946
    Information about related materials is available at https://ibase.sdsu.edu/view-item?key=R3siTiI6MTcsIlAiOnsiaXRlbV90eXBlcyI6Mn19&pg=17&WINID=1429728069277#y1I6MkZYtUIAAAFM4m8D7w/271454

    Scope and Contents

    This collection consists of ten boxes of correspondence received from servicemen, servicewomen, and their families during the Second World War. The collection contains letters sent to Lauren Post for his information in compiling the San Diego State College Service Men's News Letter, which later changed its name to The Aztec News Letter. Many of the letters contain red pencil markings, indicating that a specific line or paragraph was to be included in the newsletter. By the end of the War, The Aztec News Letter was circulated to over 3,000 service and homefront readers.
    The collection has over 5,000 individual letters, the vast majority handwritten originals, arranged chronologically by year then alphabetically within folders according to the last name of the author. Some letters with no dates, partial or unreadable names, or that were unsigned are at the end of the collection. A full run of the Aztec News Letter is also part of the collection. Also of interest in the collection is a World War II servicemen's guest book.  Between 1943 and 1945, the guest book was kept in the campus cafeteria so that returning servicemen could sign the guest book and write short messages about their experiences abroad and about their happiness returning to campus.
    A comprehensive database of the correspondence has been prepared with searchable fields, including Last Name, First Name, Date, Location, Keywords, Notes, and Letter Content Description: ibase.sdsu.edu