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Jimmy Ley Collection

James “Jimmy” J. Ley attended Grinnell College for two years before enlisting in the U.S. Army Air Force in 1942. Ley’s papers include an extensive series of correspondence written by Ley during his time at Grinnell and in the army air force, as well as personal items, photographs, and military documents.

Ley, Jimmy
After graduation Jimmy spends his free time on base.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy elaborates on his new living conditions in detail.

Ley, Jimmy
Bob enlisted in the Marines. Jimmy is already talking about Christmas.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy writes about his visit to Baltimore over the weekend.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy enjoyed another visit to Baltimore and to a girl’s house for dinner.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy describes his Christmas experience including gifts and cards he received. He encloses a paragraph from a friend named Sidney.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy explains pre-flight procedures.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy is still waiting and eager to ship out.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy describes his new life in Maryland and adds a note on the B-26.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy arrives in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He has received his uniform and writes about his daily schedule at the Reception Center Division.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy arrives at Sheppard Field, Texas for training for the Air Corps. He hopes to become a mechanic. He describes the hot desert climate.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy outlines his daily schedule and describes the various divisions that he would like to join such as aerial gunnery.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy thanks his parents for their letter and birthday gift. He tells about his vaccinations and disease in the army.

Ley, Jimmy
After informing his parents of a missing check, Jimmy discusses his weekend plans to visit Des Moines.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy talks about recent new concerning the war and mentions for the first time that he will most likely have to serve for a long time. He wonders if he should attend summer school to try to speed up his graduation.

Ley, Jimmy
With only twelve school days left, Jimmy talks about ‘pre-flighting’ checks and a letter from Betty.

Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy begins by discussing football , describes why a furlough is not possible, and ends with a comment on the quality of the soldiers.

Ley, Jimmy
It is Jimmy’s four month anniversary in the army and he admits that everyone is eager to be done with training.


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