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Oral history interview with Virginia C. Bordner Martinson 2003.

Author: Virginia C Bordner Martinson; Gayle J Martinson; Wisconsin Veterans Museum.
Edition/Format:   Archival material : Cassette recording : English
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Virginia Martinson discusses her experience on the Madison, Wisconsin home front during World War II.
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Named Person: Virginia C Bordner Martinson; Virginia C Bordner; Bob Baumann; Dave Schreiner; John S Bordner
Document Type: Archival Material
All Authors / Contributors: Virginia C Bordner Martinson; Gayle J Martinson; Wisconsin Veterans Museum.
OCLC Number: 255679916
Event notes: Interviewed by Gayle Martinson on September 11, 2003 in Madison, Wisconsin.
Description: Sound recording : 1 sound cassette (ca. 100 min.) ; analog, 1 7/8 ips. Transcript : 32 p. Master sound recording : 1 sound cassette (ca. 100 min.) ; analog, 1 7/8 ips.

Abstract:

Virginia Martinson discusses her experience on the Madison, Wisconsin home front during World War II.

Martinson describes being adopted from Milwaukee (Wisconsin), and being brought home to Ladysmith. She relates that her father worked for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture and that he was also in charge of the Wisconsin Land Economic Inventory. After graduating high school in 1939, Martinson attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she describes meeting and becoming friends with members of the legendary 1942 Badger football team, particularly Dave Schreiner, Bud Seeliger, and Bob Bauman. Martinson describes in detail her relationship with Bauman, and how they were engaged to be married. She talks of being part of "The Lathrop Lizards" who were a group of town girls at UW-Madison, as well as her participation in a round robin for over sixty years. Martinson tells that she frequently corresponded with several different servicemen, and she also organized and attended USO dances. She describes the rationing of gas and chewing gum, but relates that her family always had gas, and a friend's father was able to find chewing gum for her. Martinson details her father's involvement in the establishment of Crestwood (Wisconsin) as a cooperative community, the growing of victory gardens, and the use of sorghum. She also tells of the hostility and objection when a Japanese-American family moved into the area. When describing her engagement to Bauman, Martinson tells that they were to be married on one of Bauman's leaves, but because he was to be shipped out, his leave was cancelled and the wedding postponed. She describes the deaths of Bauman and Schreiner, and her reaction to her fiance's death, also relating the burning of all of Bauman's letters as part of her healing process, and having always kept Bauman's pictures, and newspaper articles. Efforts were made by the interviewer, her daughter, who was able to validate the stories by years of hearing them repeated, to ensure the credibility of Martinson's stories. However, Virginia Martinson was in the early stages of senile dementia at the time of the interview with the result that the stories were "shortened" and the order of telling a little confused.

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