By Gwen Stanley
The Woodstock Historical Society, is preparing a book comprised of 35 interviews of Veterans of World War II. With an emphasis on Woodstock Vets, but including some from Barnard, Bridgewater and other local towns, the book is the culmination of much collaboration by the Woodstock Historical Society, the Oral History Committee, and Woodstock’s American Legion Post, who donated $1,000 toward the cost of transcription and printing.
Jennie Shurtleff, Education Coordinator of the Woodstock Historical Society, said that some of the interviews were done years ago as part of the work that the Society does on a regular basis. Interviews with Veterans were chosen and new ones added throughout the last few years. The interviews represent a broad range of those involved with WWII, Shurtleff said.
“We tried to get as many people involved as we could. All branches of the service are represented and we really got the gamut in terms of location of service – Eurpopean Theatre, everything,” Shurtleff said.
The book includes photographs of the Veterans in their uniforms, and one or two pages dedicated to each individual. There is also a section that honors “In Memorium” those who served and did not return.
“We did a lot of paring down and editing,” Shurtleff said. “Some of the original interviews were 20 or 30 pages long.” The project required a transcriber who, Shurtleff pointed out, spend many hours sorting through the interviews. “Loie Havell did an excellent job as transcriber. She went through to choose the salient parts.”
Shurtleff also pointed out the legwork done by the interviewers themselves.
“Erwin Fullerton and Jack Hunter and many others were out doing the interviews,” she said.
The book, which is due back from Marus printers in Hartland in the next week, is available at the History Center at 26 Elm Street. You can contact them at 802-457-1822 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Gwen Stanley