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Archives Branch: Personal Papers Collections

A guide to the papers of individual Marines held by the Archives Branch.

Thomas E. Watson Collection (COLL/3615)

Physical Characteristics: 7 standard legal size document boxes; 3.5 linear feet

Span Dates: 1912-1956

Scope and Content: The Thomas E. Watson Collection is comprised of materials related to Watson's Marine Corps career spanning the years 1914 to 1956. The collection includes the Watson’s voluminous correspondence, concentrated in the years 1916-1935, when he was assigned duty in the Caribbean during the Banana Wars. Of particular interest are reports on the execution of prisoners and intelligence on the activities of Augusto Sandino in Nicaragua. Watson served in the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua as well as China. Memoranda, orders, and reports retained by Watson in the course of his duties offer a wealth of information on the political and social conditions of these countries, as well as on a variety of Marine Corps activities. There is also substantial correspondence for World War II, when Watson was in command of the 22d Marines, and later the 2d Marine Division, during the fighting for Saipan and Tinian. Photographs, primarily depicting images of the Dominican Republic during 1917-1918 and the activities of Watson as commander of the 2d Marine Division during 1943-1944, complete the collection.

Louis H. Wilson, Jr., 1975Louis H. Wilson, Jr. Collection (COLL/3149)

Physical Characteristics: 74 standard legal size document boxes; 2 oversize boxes; 36 linear feet

Span Dates: 1941-2006

Scope and Content: The papers of Louis H. Wilson, Jr. consist of materials relating mainly to his career with the Marine Corps as Major General Commandant. ncluded in this collection is correspondence of the Office of the Commandant, invitations, newspaper clippings, assistant files, speech transcripts, service records, and photographs of Wilson as well as those taken at events he attended. There is also a large series devoted to the records of Wilson’s assistants in the Office of the Commandant. There are a few records related to Wilson’s World War II service and the awarding of his Congressional Medal of Honor. Of note is the public relations series which contains information about interviews approved by the Marine Corps Public Relations Office. Within this paperwork are extensive reports made in preparation for the interviews giving Wilson potential questions and answers. The collection is arranged alphabetically by subject headings and chronologically within each series. For all of the subject headings, some were assigned by Wilson or his staff and others were imposed by the processor. Series in this collection include awards, clippings, correspondence, invitations, personal assistant files, public relations, and service records.

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