Looking for a place for my Grandpa
#11

Hi Dwayne, welcome to the forum. We`ll sure try to help you solve your research puzzle. It may take awhile so stick with us, you have a lot of good clues and there will tons of sources & records to check.

A couple of things i would suggest is go to a local Library & search newspapers of the time frame, newspapers usualy had some mention of the local boys in WWII.

Another is to contact the local VA Hospital, they may have a copy of his records.

I dont have much time to do a lot of research at the moment, but i found a few things that will help.

The 434th AAF Base Unit was located in Santa Rosa, California, & i think Hamilton Field was close to there.

I wondered why a 23 yr old would be sent back to the States in Dec of `44 unless he was a casualty, but in a Nov `44 report of the 818th EAB there appears to have been a normal rotation back to the States of men that had served in Iceland.

 

The 21st Engineers was a full regiment in `41, The Reg went from the US direct to the Invasion of North Africa in Nov `42 & serve in NoAf, & Italy for the war.

2 Companies of this Regiment did go to Iceland in `41

I find nothing on a 21st Eng Const BN (separate).

Now for Iceland:

On & July `41, 2 Companies of the 21st Eng Aviation Regiment landed at Rykjavik, Iceland with the first group of Task Force 4 of the 33 Pursuit Squadron.

These 2 Companies were soon redesignated as the 824th EAB.

The second group of Task Force 4 landed 16 Sept `41 and include 2 Battalions of the 5th Eng Combat Regiment.

The 7th Eng Combat Battalion, organic to the 5th Infantry Div. landed in May `42.

Any part of the above units could have landed in Jan when your granddad did.

for now, here is a website for the IX Engineer Command that has a tremendous amount of information on Eng Aviation units including monthly operation reports & histories:

 

http://www.ixengineercommand.com/index.php

Ok, here is a high dollar question. You mentioned that 2 Companies of the 21st went to Iceland and then redesignated to the 824th EAB. what 2 companies were they and is it possible another company or relief of the soldiers of those two companies were on board such as my grandfather enrout on the 15 Jan 1942 to Iceland. were they Companies or battalions?

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#12

The histories of Iceland dont mention which 2 companies of the 21st went in July `41 & were redesignated as the 824th. To find that out you`d have to get the Regiment`s records from the National Archives in Collage Park, MD. One history says only 2 companies went, another says the 1st Battalion minus 2 companies went. Since there is no record or mention of any other part of the 21st after the redesignation, it was most likely there was only the 2 companies. Also there is no further mention of the 824th, they have no campaign credits & dont appear to have ever left Iceland. Again, you`d have to get the unit records to see if any of the men were transfered to other units.

An explaination of your gdad going in Jan `42 probly has more to do with the historical timing. It appears he was drafted in April `41 which was only 3 months before the units of the 21st left for Iceland. Even if he was in those units at the time, the Selective service Act of 1940 prohibited draftees from serving outside the US and US teritories in the western hemisphere. In 1941 Iceland was a foreign neutral, and it took a lot of diplomatic wrangling to even station any US troops there. The units that went to Iceland had to be combed thru & men transfered so only regular army men were sent & not draftees. After war was declared in Dec `41, the hemishere restrictions were lifted on draftees.

I have to go for now, more later. meanwhile here`s some more reading for you:

 

http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/AAF/VII/AAF-VII-9.html

 

Chapter XVIII: Planning the Iceland Operation

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#13

The histories of Iceland dont mention which 2 companies of the 21st went in July `41 & were redesignated as the 824th. To find that out you`d have to get the Regiment`s records from the National Archives in Collage Park, MD. One history says only 2 companies went, another says the 1st Battalion minus 2 companies went. Since there is no record or mention of any other part of the 21st after the redesignation, it was most likely there was only the 2 companies. Also there is no further mention of the 824th, they have no campaign credits & dont appear to have ever left Iceland. Again, you`d have to get the unit records to see if any of the men were transfered to other units.

An explaination of your gdad going in Jan `42 probly has more to do with the historical timing. It appears he was drafted in April `41 which was only 3 months before the units of the 21st left for Iceland. Even if he was in those units at the time, the Selective service Act of 1940 prohibited draftees from serving outside the US and US teritories in the western hemisphere. In 1941 Iceland was a foreign neutral, and it took a lot of diplomatic wrangling to even station any US troops there. The units that went to Iceland had to be combed thru & men transfered so only regular army men were sent & not draftees. After war was declared in Dec `41, the hemishere restrictions were lifted on draftees.

I have to go for now, more later. meanwhile here`s some more reading for you:

 

http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/AAF/VII/AAF-VII-9.html

 

Chapter XVIII: Planning the Iceland Operation

Sonofamp, You are a walking history book and I thank you for it. I appriciate your postings and references, along with quick responce. I think Im gonna write NARA for unit Rosters for the 21st engineers 1st bn while in Iceland between the time of 1942 and the 824th. I am unclear as to when they redesignated the group. I think giving them a unit and time frame shouldnt be to much to ask huh? I also wander, if his 1st assignment was the 21st after completing basic training, and being a draftee whats the chance he stayed with the 21st after leaving for Iceland? Problem too is it seems NARA makes things so dificult to get intentionally, gets frustrating sometimes. One thing at a time though right?

 

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#14

I always strongly urge people to contact NARA and other such establishments. For a complete list of research links, please see our forum listing:

 

http://www.6thcorpscombatengineers.com/eng...hp?showtopic=23

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
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#15

Larry let me know about a site which sells WWII items. While looking through it this morning, I found something very cool. You may want to take a look. Pretty exciting!!!!

 

312th Engineer © Battalion History

$65.00 ($8.00 S&H)

 

Nice hardcover history of the 312th Engineer © Battalion of the 87th Infantry Division complete with rosters. Real nice condition.

 

You can find it here. It's all the way at the very bottom of the page:

 

http://www.bullfrogvalleymilitaria.com/category.cfm?SID=32

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
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#16

Slinky, look at this one too. Didn't notice it the first time around:

 

"Armed Guardians" One Year in Iceland

$40.00 ($4.00 S&H)

 

Neat 96 page book on Allied troops in Iceland during WW2. Prepared by the G-2 Section, Iceland Base Command, December 1942. Excellent condition.

 

It's towards the bottom of the page too. It's about 23rd from the bottom to be exact.

 

:armata_PDT_01:

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
Reply
#17

Here is a copy a little more beat up but cheaper:

UH78 ARMED GUARDIANS, One Year in Iceland, Prepared by G-2 Section, Iceland Base Command, December, 1942, Reykjavik, Iceland, softback, ex libris, 96 pages, good condition, $17.50

 

http://www.overlordmilitary.com/unithistories.html

 

and here is a file that should help you find the Air Force records:

 

US Air Force: Guide to Documentary Sources

 

http://www.airforcehistory.hq.af.mil/Publications/fulltext/Guide_to_Documentary_Sources.pdf

Reply
#18

Here is a copy a little more beat up but cheaper:

UH78 ARMED GUARDIANS, One Year in Iceland, Prepared by G-2 Section, Iceland Base Command, December, 1942, Reykjavik, Iceland, softback, ex libris, 96 pages, good condition, $17.50

 

http://www.overlordmilitary.com/unithistories.html

 

and here is a file that should help you find the Air Force records:

 

US Air Force: Guide to Documentary Sources

 

http://www.airforcehistory.hq.af.mil/Publications/fulltext/Guide_to_Documentary_Sources.pdf

You all are much to great, I happened to check on the one you posted for $17.50 as originally posted. I did see one for $40.00 as well. I called the guy in MO, although he never called me back after I talked with him. I talked with another individual who has the same book, unfortunatly he said its not a year book as you may think. In fact it doesnt speak of any units and only has 3 pics with like 2 or 3 pages about the engineers but doesnt give any info about the Units. He said for whhat Im after its not very usefull.

 

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#19

Id like to hank everyone for their help. I hav great news, I can finally feel confident my grandfather was part of the 21st Engineers (AVN) in Iceland. I recently paid a visit to my aunt whom I barely new. She is the Yongest of my grandfathers brothers and sister and the only one living. She showed me some things and gave me a greeting Card from my Grandfather t his mom on the from it says 21st Engineers (AVN) howver the date of Manufacture card is 1941, he went to Iceland in 1942. It sas printed by 2nd Bn 21st Eng Avn. Not sure if that means he belonged to the 1st Bn or 2ndBn. Either way Im happy I could Copnfirm that. The history of the 21st in Iceland is later they changed to the 824th EAB until 1 June 1944 thn was redeignated to the 1923rd composite enineers. I have recently recievd an order from someone who deals with history seach. I recieved the Order of Meritorious Unit Citation for the 824th enineer AVN between Jan 1944 and june 1944 if anyone whos grandfather also served there and collect what info they can. If you want a copy let me know and well transfer email at a more private level. Id like to share more pictures and hopefully someone could Idntify these other soldiers with my Grandfather. Marion would it be possible to start a page for the Solders in Iceland and hang pictures of them up, that would be a big help on my other search? Now my next mission is what Unit was he with going into France 1 July 1944. The one of him on the D-7 Dozer I believe is in France. If anyone has pic's of anybody in Iceland dring this time, please do share

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.jpg   Ham Snell Home.jpg (Size: 54.24 KB / Downloads: 0)
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#20

Yippeee!!!!!! Always great to hear fantastic news. So happy for your new discoveries and also the chance you had to get together with your aunt. Research has a wonderful way of getting people back together.

 

We are also very grateful for the photos you post. I just love those.

 

:wave2:

Keep those happy posts coming...

Marion J Chard
Proud Daughter of Walter (Monday) Poniedzialek
540th Engineer Combat Regiment, 2833rd Bn, H&S Co, 4th Platoon
There's "No Bridge Too Far"
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