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Nimitz Library

Robert W. Swartz Papers, 1944-1946: Finding Aid

Published in January 2011

Summary Information

  • Publisher: United States Naval Academy. Special Collections & Archives.
  • Publisher Address:
    589 McNair Road
    Annapolis, Maryland 21402-5029, USA
    Phone: 410-293-6917
  • Call number: MS 353
  • Location: Special Collections & Archives Department - Manuscripts
  • Title: Robert W. Swartz Papers
  • Dates: 1944-1946
  • Size: 0.17 linear feet
  • Container Summary: 3 folders containing 3 items
  • Creator: Swartz, Robert W., 1926-
  • Language(s) of material: English
  • Abstract: Robert W. Swartz was a hospital corpsman in the U.S. Navy during the closing days of World War II. The Swartz Papers span from October 1944 to July 1946, and focus on Swartz's drafting into the U.S. Navy, service aboard U.S.S. Franklin D. Roosevelt (Aircraft Carrier : CV-42), and various other duty stations as a hospital corpsman.

Biography of Robert W. Swartz

Robert Wilbert Swartz, who was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on October 6, 1926, was drafted into the U.S. Navy in late October 1944. After being found physically fit for duty, Swartz was inducted on December 8, 1944 in Philadelphia. Following induction, he was assigned to the U.S. Naval Training Center, Bainbridge, Maryland for training.

After graduating from hospital corps training on July 5, 1945, Swartz was stationed at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Annapolis, Maryland. In early 1946, he was transferred to U.S. Naval Receiving Station and Armed Guard Center, Brooklyn, New York. By February, Swartz was attached to the Fleet Training Group, Atlantic Fleet, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and shortly thereafter was stationed aboard U.S.S. Franklin D. Roosevelt (Attack aircraft carrier: CVA-42). In April 1946, Swartz transferred to the U.S. Submarine Base, New London, Connecticut, where he was detailed to the eye clinic. Three months later, Swartz was discharged from the U.S. Navy as part of the post-World War II demobilization.

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Description of Contents

The Robert W. Swartz Papers, consisting of three volumes, span from October 1944 to July 1946. The scrapbooks focus on Swartz's drafting into the U.S. Navy and various duty stations as a hospital corpsman.

The collection consists of a diary and two scrapbooks. The scrapbooks are composed of forms, memoranda, hand-drawn sketches, identification cards, membership cards, event programs, luggage tags, press clippings, photographs, and firing range targets.

The Swartz Papers are the product of Swartz's induction, training, and brief service in the U.S. Navy as a hospital corpsman in the closing days, and shortly after the conclusion of World War II. Documents in Swartz's scrapbooks, such as selective service notices, liberty passes, separation papers, base newspapers (specifically the The Indian from Guantanamo Bay and Sub Base Gazette from the U.S. Submarine Base in New London), a 1945 Christmas dinner program from the United States Naval Academy, a Baltimore city guide book, a New York City Subway map, luggage tags for transport to Guantanamo Bay, and Cuban cigar labels, offer a brief glimpse into Swartz's military experiences. His training and responsibilities as a corpsman are evident from a Hospital Corps graduation program and list of duties for eye room officers and corpsmen. The scrapbooks also offer evidence of some of Swartz's affiliations through membership and identification cards, such as those for the National Jewish Welfare Board and American Legion.

In addition to the aforementioned documents the scrapbooks include numerous sketches by Swartz. Many of the drawings depict naval vessels, ordnance, and allied aircraft such as seaplanes, P-38 Lightnings, and British Spitfires. Also included are sketches of shipboard equipment, including firefighting equipment and breathing apparatus.

The diary is the product of Swartz's time as a corpsman aboard U.S.S. Franklin D. Roosevelt, from February through April 1946. The diary discusses everyday occurrences, such as drills, inspections, standing watch, and meals, as well as Swartz's assignment to the Aviation Medicine department.

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The Robert W. Swartz Papers are organized into the following three files.

  • File 1: Scrapbook - Book I, 1944-1946
  • File 2: Scrapbook - Book II, 1944-1946
  • File 3: Diary, 1946
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Access and Use


Access is unrestricted.

Copyright and Permission

The Robert W. Swartz Scrapbooks are the physical property of Nimitz Library. Copyright belongs to the authors or creators of the works, or their legal representatives. For further information, consult the Head, Special Collections & Archives.

It is the responsibility of the researcher to secure written permission to publish, reprint, or reproduce material from Special Collections & Archives. The researcher assumes responsibility for infringement of copyright or literary or publication rights. Please contact the Head, Special Collections & Archives for permission to publish and for further information.

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Acquisition and Appraisal

Provenance and Acquisition

Provenance of original accession unknown. Diary gift of Ann Backhurst in April 2012. Accession No. 12-05.

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Related Materials

Related Archival Material

Photographs of World War II era Navy Hospital Corpsmen can be found in the Edward Steichen Photography Collection in Special Collections & Archives, Nimitz Library.

Materials Cataloged Separately

No materials have been removed from this collection.

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Processing and Other Information

Preferred Citation

Robert W. Swartz Scrapbooks, MS 353

Special Collections & Archives Department

Nimitz Library

United States Naval Academy

Processing Information

This collection was originally processed by Mary R. Catalfamo in 2003 and reprocessed by David D'Onofrio in January 2011. Finding aid written by David D'Onofrio in January 2011.

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Subject Headings

Name and Subject Terms

  • Franklin D. Roosevelt (Aircraft carrier : CV-42)
  • Swartz, Robert W., 1926-
  • United States. Navy -- Hospital corpsmen

Genre Terms

  • Clippings (information artifacts
  • Diaries
  • Drawings (visual works)
  • Manuscripts
  • Newsletters
  • Photographs
  • Scrapbooks
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Contents List

Box 1 Folder 1

Scrapbook - Book I, 1944-1946

Box 1 Folder 2

Scrapbook - Book II, 1944-1946

Box 1 Folder 3

Diary, 1946

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