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Interview on experiences in World War II

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Creator: Mai, Milton

Date: January 25, 2006

Level of Description: Item

Material Type: Manuscripts

Call Number: World War II Oral Histories Project

Unit ID: 211407

Biographical sketch: Milton Mai was drafted in 1942 and went to boot camp at Leavenworth, Kansas. From there he took more training in Cheyenne, Wyoming before being transferred to Camp Cook in California. He was then sent to Utah to an Italian Prisoner of War Camp where he was in charge of the kitchen and sometimes took the prisoners out to work in the field. He learned to speak some Italian from the prisoners there and also speaks German, which he grew up with. Then he was transfered to a German Prisoner of War Camp, also in Utah, where he was again in charge of the kitchen. The prisoners were very happy with the food, they were served beef, pork, lamb, potatoes, beans, peas, etc. One time they were transporting twenty prisoners from Utah to Oklahoma by train when they discovered that two were missing. They found where they had cut some wires and were able to escape, they were later caught. He never felt threatened by any of the prisoners and said he was under no stress or pressure as a guard. When he was discharged, Milton returned to farming in the Wakeeny area.

Summary: Staff Sergeant Mai was drafted into the Army in 1942 and served until 1945 in the Quartermaster Corp. Interviewed by Janet Johannes on Jan 25, 2006, Mai talked about military experiences in the Second World War. The 2005 Kansas Legislature passed a bill funding the WWII Veterans Oral History grant program. This transcript is from one of the nine community institutions that received these grants. The transcript from the interview is presented here; the original video copy of the interview is available through the Ellis County Historical Society (Hays) and through the Kansas State Historical Society.

Space Required/Quantity: Video

Title (Main title): Interview on experiences in World War II

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019-14-03-06  DVD 

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