No Plan Survives First Contact The Gilchrest Family Archive Series 6 Military Papers is now Series 4 Military Service

IMG_1247There is a saying in the military No Plan Survives First Contact. The saying certainly applied when I started to work with the initial plan. In my post Setting Up The Family ArchivesI had formulated a general plan for my archive including my military papers and artifacts.  

As a refresher, this was the original plan.

  • Series 6. Military Papers
    • subSeries A. Gilchrest John D (Dads papers)
      • Folders: (by assignment filed chronologically)
    • subSeries B. WW II (One set of these documents is from NARA. The rest were passed on to me)
      • Folders: by person filed alphabetically
    • subSeries C.  WWI (These documents are primarily from NARA but there are a few that have been passed down)
      • Folders: (by person filed alphabetically)
    • subSeries D.  Civil War (Documents from NARA)
      • Folders: by person filed alphabetically
    • subSeries E.  War of 1812 (Documents are from NARA)
      • Folders: (by person filed alphabetically)
    • subSeries F.  Revolutionary War (Documents are from NARA)
      • Folders: by person filed alphabetically
    • subSeries G.  Foreign Wars (These documents are from Canada, UK & Austria.)
      • Folders: by country, then by person alphabetically

The Re-worked Military Series

How Series 6 Become Series 4.

My workflow has been to scan the document, add it to Zotero, put the document into a protective sleeve and then in its archival file folder. Each Zotero entry contains a field “Loc. in Archive.” I decided to add each document’s location into that field. For example Series 4, subSeries A, Box 1, Folder 1. Clicking on image will open it in another window.
 
Zotero

Taking another look at how I had the first five series labeled I realized that they could be consolidated into three series. They became:

  • Series 1. Vital Records
    • subSeries A. Civil Records
      • Folders: (by location then alphabetically)
    • subSeries B. Parish/Church Records
      • Folders: (by location then alphabetically)
  • Series 2. BMD (Birth Marriage Death) Artifacts
    • subSeries A. Birth Artifacts
      • Box 1: Folders: Birth Announcements & Shower invitations. (by location then alphabetically)
      • Box 2: Baptismal Gown
    • subSeries B. Marriage Artifacts
      • Box 1: 3 Ring Binder Box (Mass booklets, programs, invitations
      • Box 2: Mom’s Wedding Dress
    • subSeries C: Funeral Artifacts
      • Box 1: 3 Ring Binder Box (Programs and Funeral Mass Cards
  • Series 3 Correspondance
    • subSeries A. Personal Correspondance (Letters & Postcards)
      • Boxes with folders single letter per folder filed chronologically
    • subSeries B. Genealogical inquiries and Evidence

The combining of the first five series meant that the military papers became Series 4.

The re-worked Series 6 Military Papers

Based on the re-evaluation of the first five series I also revised the subSeries in Series 6. Items in red have been added or changed from the first plan.

  • Series 4. Military Service
    • subSeries A. Gilchrest, John D (Dads papers)
      • Box 1 1947-1967
      • Box 2 1967-1977
    • subSeries B. Gilchrest Information Files, Military Bases & Surrounding Locations, USAFSS Magazines.
      • Box 1 Document Box, documents & magazines individual folders, chronologically.
      • Box 2 Directories and Information Booklets. [Maps tentatively located in Series 22 Oversized items. May add an oversized box to keep items together.]
    • subSeries C. Militaria
      • Boxes: Medals, Patches, Uniforms, Ann’s Challenge Coins
    • subSeries D.  John D Gilchrest Military Photographs
      • Boxes: photos divided by assignment.
    • subSeries E. Grandpa Schindlers Artifacts & papers. WWI

In addition to re-assigning the various subSeries for the other original items related to the military, I have tentatively decided to do a single subSeries for the duplicate copies I have from NARA (National Archives and Records Administration).

  • subSeries F. Military Service Other (Duplicate copies from NARA)
    • Folder: WWII OSS Papers Ghinazzi, Bruno
    • Folder: Civil War Douras, James
    • Folder: Civil War Futscher, Jacob
    • Folder: Civil War Gstach, Andrew
    • Folder: Civil War Richardson, Mathias
    • Folder: War of 1812 Uptegrove, Joseph

The re-organization serves two purposes. The first is, it keeps all of the original documents and artifacts together allowing those parts to be passed down as a group. At the same time if the person receiving them is not a genealogist they can eliminate the last subSeries containing the duplicate copies without having to sort through them.

I am still considering making subSeries F into an independent Series for a couple of reasons.  If I receive additional original material it can be incorporated without having to re-name subSeries F and I can leave instructions that a particular Series does not contain any original material allowing that Series to be eliminated without fear of losing original material.

Folder naming convention For Dad’s military papers.  

I decided to organize Dad’s papers by assignment, Location, Dates and lastly a Folder number. Below are the names of the folders. I use folders with full tabs. This allows for long folder names.

BOX 1

  • Air Training Command Lackland AFB, San Antonio, Texas June 1947–September 1947 Folder 1
  • Air Training Command 3505th Air Base Unit (Tech School) Scott AFB, Belleville, Illinois, Sept 1947–July 1948 Folder 2
  • Airways & Air Communications Service 1220 AACS Liaison Unit, RCAF Station Edmond, Alberta Canada July 1948 –August 1948 Folder 3
  • Airways & Air Communications Service USAF Det. 1851- 2 AACS Unit 5 Det. 122-2 Hamlin, Saskatchewan, Canada August –March 1949 Folder 4
  • Airways & Air Communications Service 1930th AACS Squadron Det. 1930-6 Barter Island, Alaska March 1949–March 1950 Folder 5
  • Technical Training Wing 1858th Loran Squadron, Keesler AFB Biloxi, Mississippi March 1950–May 1951 Folder 6
  • 1858th AACS Det. 1858-2 Cape San Blass, Florida May 1951–November 1951 Folder 7
  • AACS Squadron 1928 Det. 6 Palm Beach International Airport, West Palm Beach Florida November 1951–February 1952 Folder 8
  • AACS 1805th Camp Kilmer, New Jersey February 1952–March 1952 Folder 9
  • AACS Squadron 1971st Keflavik, Iceland March 1952–April 1953 Folder 10
  • 5th Operational Squadron 5th AB Group Travis AFB, California April 1953–November 1954 Folder 11
  • TDY SAC X-RAY Tokyo, Japan November 1954–May 1955 Folder 12
  • 5th AB Group SAC Travis AFB, California May 1955–February 1957 Folder 13
  • 28th Bombardment Wing Heavy SAC Ellsworth AFB, Rapid City, South Dakota, February 1957–September 1957 Folder 14
  • 6981st Radio Group Mobile Elmendorf AFB, Anchorage, Alaska September 1957–December 1961 Folder 15
  • 6974 Support Squadron Pentagon, Virginia December 1961–March 1965 Folder 16-1 of 4 (1962)
  • 6974 Support Squadron Pentagon, Virginia December 1961–March 1965 Folder 16-2 of 4 (1963)
  • 6974 Support Squadron Pentagon, Virginia December 1961–March 1965 Folder 16-3 of 4 (1964–65)
  • PCS Move Virginia to Karamursel AS, Turkey February1965–December 1966 Folder 16-4 of 4 (1965)
  • TUSLOG Det. 94 Karamursel Air Station Turkey March 1965–June 1967 Folder 17-1 of 5 (March 1965–May 1966)
  • Military Council of Catholic Women May 1966 Folder 17-2 of 5
  • Move Yalova, Turkey to Karamursel AS June 1966 Folder 17-3 of 5
  • TUSLOG Det. 94 Karamursel Air Station Turkey March 1965–June 1967 Folder 17-4 of 5 (June 1966–June 1967)

BOX 2

  • Sale of Car and PSC Move Karamursel Air Station to Kelly AFB, San Antonio, Texas Folder 17-5 of 5
  • Purchase/Delivery/Disposition  of 1967 Pontiac Tempest Custom Station Wagon Folder 18-1 of 4
  • 6960th Support Group Kelly AFB, San Antonio, Texas June 1967–June 1969 Folder 18-1of 3 (1967)
  • 6960th Support Group Kelly AFB, San Antonio, Texas June 1967–June 1969 Folder 18-2 of 3 (1968-69)
  • Resume Folder 18-3 of 3
  • Air Force Reserve June 1969–June 1977 Folder 19
  • Consolidated Training Record Folder. Folder 20
  • In Retirement Folder 21

You probably noticed that I did not choose to start re-numbering the folders at one in Box 2. Many archives have a policy to number folders beginning with one for each box. That approach didn’t make sense to me in this case.

You will also notice that not every folder name contains an assignment. Examples include:

  • PCS Move Virginia to Karamursel AS, Turkey February1965–December 1966 Folder 16-4 of 4 (1965)
  • Military Council of Catholic Women May 1966 Folder 17-2 of 5
  • Move Yalova, Turkey to Karamursel AS June 1966 Folder 17-3 of 5
  • Sale of Car and PSC Move Karamursel Air Station to Kelly AFB, San Antonio, Texas Folder 17-5 of 5
  • Purchase/Delivery/Disposition  of 1967 Pontiac Tempest Custom Station Wagon Folder 18-1 of 4
  • Air Force Reserve June 1969–June 1977 Folder 19
  • Consolidated Training Record Folder. Folder 20
  • In Retirement Folder 21

These folders contain items related to specific events. PCS (Permanent Change of Station) moves overseas generate a lot of paperwork including complete inventories with descriptions of any damage. These events made for a natural break in the number of pieces of paper. Keeping folders from becoming overloaded.

Some of the events are not specifically military in nature but the paperwork was originally included in Dad’s military paperwork. This is where Respect des Fonds comes into play. Even though I changed the way my Dad organized his papers by setting them up chronologically instead of by type. By keeping the none military papers in the collection it gives them context and keeps them in the original place Dad filed them.

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