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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.

grinnell:18650
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy shares the good news that he passed his physical exam to be an aerial engineer.

grinnell:18643
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy praises Ed’s letter-writing skills and describes running all the engines for test blocks. He is happy with his final portions of school and attended a Halloween U.S.O. dance.

grinnell:18651
Ley, Jimmy
Only four days away from graduation, Jimmy looks forward to moving to a new base.

grinnell:18644
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy compares new lieutenants with more experienced officers. His letter from Aunt Ida mentions black-out curtains.

grinnell:18645
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy talks about the final phases in school and the power of Allison engines.

grinnell:18646
Ley, Jimmy
After a few days of rain, the group went on a five mile hike in the mud and Jimmy comments on football.

grinnell:13072
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy received a letter from Ruth with pictures of Davy. He responds to news about Betty’s wedding tea and sends a bill for Betty and Ed to buy a wedding gift.

grinnell:13103
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy ends the carburetion phase. He hopes to graduate around Thanksgiving time. He mentions his father’s scrap business back at home and tells about a parade they put on in the camp.

grinnell:13107
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy goes on sick call for athlete’s foot. He writes that last week all of the instructors received promotions, most to sergeants, which greatly improved morale for them.

grinnell:13230
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy tells about his new schedule. He discourages his parents from visiting since he hopes he’ll be able to get a furlough when classes end.

grinnell:13234
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy responds to news from home about Betty’s wedding and a local fire.

grinnell:13238
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy describes an obstacle course and a hike with gas masks and other gear for training.

grinnell:13242
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy reports that he only has twenty days of school left. Jimmy mentions a forthcoming gas ration.

grinnell:13075
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy visited Dallas again and practiced his first drill with a rifle. He wishes his father happy birthday and writes about a letter from Aunt Pearl.

grinnell:13084
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy writes about a five mile cross-country run and more rifle drills.

grinnell:12528
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy responds to news from home and mentions the Lakota scrap drive. He outlines the official changes regarding the mechanical school.

grinnell:12804
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy attended a U. S. O. dance and met some nice girls. He plans to visit his Aunt Florence’s friend Miss Smith. He wonders about paying to take flying lessons.

grinnell:12808
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy asks about gas rationing at home and writes about engine repair.

grinnell:12812
Ley, Jimmy
Jimmy describes a gas mask drill.

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