H16-1902. Vander Veen, Thomas (1888-1980). Papers, 1918-1980. 0.25 linear ft.
Thomas Vander Veen (VanderVeen) was born in the Netherlands in 1880 and served as a Dutch-American soldier during World War I on the Western Front in France. There he was a messenger that carried messages between his company commander at the front and the Post Commander at the rear. After the war ended, he earned a Distinguished Service Cross for his bravery in delivering messages, specifically during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive from October 10-13, 1918. He passed away in Wisconsin in 1980. The collection includes digital versions of biographical information, images, diary and transcription of his experiences in the war, which dates from October 2, 1918, to the armistice at the end of the war on November 12, 1918. A second diary describes his time in Germany, Belgium, France, the Netherlands, and the United States from 1919-1920. His diaries are an extraordinary first-person account of the end of World War I and occupied Germany, and provide a personal narrative of one man fighting on the Western Front and Europe and the United States following the war.
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