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Charles E. H. Bates family correspondence, 1899-1930 inclusive: 1918-1920 bulk.
MANUSCRIPT Boxes 2275-2285
Collection Overview


Charles E. H. Bates family correspondence, 1899-1930 inclusive: 1918-1920 bulk: World War I letters, 1918-1920 bulk
World War I letters, 1918-1920
Charles E. H. Bates World War I letters, 1918-1920


Bates, Charles E. H. (Charles Edward Harold), 1894-1978, creator


The collection documents the experiences of a California family during the First World War era. There are 109 holograph letters written by Charles E.H. Bates beginning in his childhood in Alameda, California, and ending in the late 1920s as he begins a career in medicine. Letters sent from California and France while Bates served with the American Expeditionary Forces date from January 1918 through May 1919. There is a larger collection of 784 letters to Bates from his family -- father, mother, and four brothers -- and friends, including the woman who became his wife. Included in this correspondence are a few photographs, news clippings and other types of ephemera such as calling cards. Documents include military orders, college transcripts, etc.
In addition to descriptions of life in military service during World War I (Army, Air Service, Marines, Navy) provided by Bates and his brothers, this collection documents the life of a middle-class family living in the Bay Area during the early years of the 20th Century. H. L. A. Bates, an insurance executive, seems to exemplify the American dream and encourages his sons to excel. Rebecca Helen Bates writes of household life and the extended family and advises her son, in great depth, on matters of education, marriage and social behavior. Jocelyn, the youngest son (not in the armed forces due to a back injury) talks of farm life in the Central Valley.
Doris Soule, a friend, tells of life in a finishing school and her hopes of becoming an actress. She eventually entertains American troops in Europe as a member of the YMCA Service Committee. Marion Linderman, another friend from Alameda, describes neighborhood social life, shopping and theater trips to San Francisco, and activities at her family's summer cottage in Brookdale, California. Elizabeth Marston writes of apartment living on MacDougal Street in Greenwich Village and of the challenges she and three other women faced on camping trips in Maine and New Hampshire. In the larger social context, the 1918 Spanish influenza epidemic's horrendous impact on California is discussed in several letters, as are the spontaneous Armistice celebrations that took place throughout the Bay Area.


1899 (issued)


Box 2275: Correpondence, Outgoing. -- Boxes 2276-2280: Correspondence, Incoming. -- Box 2281: Other correspondence, Documents. -- Box 2282: Transcriptions: Correspondence, Outgoing. -- Boxes 2283-2284. Transcriptions: Correspondence, Incoming. -- Box 2285: Transcriptions: Correspondence, Incoming; Other correspondence; Documents.


n-us-ca -- e-fr---
Bates, Charles E. H. (Charles Edward Harold) -- 1894-1978 -- Correspondence
Bates family
World War, 1914-1918 -- Personal narratives, American
Soldiers -- California -- Correspondence
United States. -- Army. -- American Expeditionary Forces -- Biography
Alameda (Calif.) -- History


Access restricted to transcriptions.
Charles Edward Harold Bates (Sneddy) was born on August 13, 1894 in Alameda, California. He attended primary school in Alameda and spent his summers at Camp Agassiz, Fallen Leaf Lake, in the Sierra Nevada. After his 1912 graduation from the Hitchcock Military Academy in San Rafael, he spent the summer in Los Angeles surveying for the Pacific Electric Company. He attended the University of California, Berkeley (where he played football) but left in his senior year to volunteer for active duty in the Army.
Bates became a 2nd Lieutenent on completion of Officers' Training School at Camp Kearney, California, and shipped to France with Company D, 103rd Infantry, 40th Division, American Expeditionary Forces. He won the Distinguished Service Medal and the Croix de Guerre for extraordinary heroism shown on September 26th, 1918 during a battle near Marchville, France. After the armistice he served with occupational forces in Luxembourg and Germany with the 32nd Division, and was promoted to 1st Lieutenant on March 18th, 1919.
After discharge, Bates resumed his medical studies at Stanford and then at Cornell University, earning his MD degree 1924. He interned at Brooklyn Hospital and completed his residency at Manhattan Eye, Ear, and Throat Hospital. He then returned to the Bay Area and spent his 47-year pofessional career in the private practice of ENT; during these years Dr. Bates was associated with Mary's Help Hospital, French Hospital and St. Luke's Hospital. He was active in many professional organizations as well as social and fraternal groups, including the American Legion, the Bohemian Club, the 32nd Degree Masons and the Islam Temple of the Shrine. He married Elizabeth Marston on October 6, 1923 in Manhattan and they had a son and two daughters. C. E. H. Bates died in San Francisco on June 17th 1978 and is buried in Mountain View Cemetery, Oakland.
Henry Lesley Alexander Bates was born in Cuddalore, Madras, India and schooled in England. He spent his early years as a sailor, including an appointment with the Royal Naval Reserve. He immigrated to Minnesota in 1880 and began working in the insurance industry. He met and married Rebecca Rixon in Billings, Montana, in the late 1880s. They relocated to the Bay Area in 1893 and Henry worked in various insurance firms in San Francisco before associating with the Standard Forms Bureau beginning in 1916 until his retirement. He and Rebecca raised their five sons in the family home in Alameda; Rebecca died in 1952 and Henry in 1953
Norman Bates, an officer in the Marine Corps, had a lengthy assignment building roads in the Philippines. While posted in New York City after World War I, he and his wife, Helen, provided Charles E.H. Bates with emotional support and encouragement as he pursued a medical degree.
Lesley Bates attended the University of California, Berkeley, and Harvard University before joining the Air Service in 1917. After the war he was a reader for MGM and Universal studios, then taught at UCLA and Los Angeles City College. He was also a poet; his works include 'Reminiscences and the old desert' published in 1980.
Richard Bates, a graduate of the Naval Academy in 1915, was stationed on ships guarding Central and South America during World War I. He pursued graduate studies as well as an active career in the Navy, serving in the Pacific Theatre during World War II. In 1949 he retired from the position of Head of the Dept. of Research and Analysis at the Naval War College as a Rear Admiral on the retired list.
Jocelyn Bates, unable to serve in the armed forces due to a back injury, initially pursued a career in agriculture and managed farms in the Central Valley. He later served as a territorial representative for a bond house.
Elizabeth Marston was a nurse in a New York City hospital when she met Charles E. H. Bates at the onset of his medical career. They were married in 1923 and relocated to California where she died in 1992.
Charles E. H. Bates family correspondence, 1899-1930



Physical Description:

11 boxes (ca. 900 items) : ill., ports.




MANUSCRIPT Boxes 2275-2285



Copyright Note:

Access restricted to transcriptions.