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Raymond W. Whittier Collection

Filing title: 
Whittier (Raymond W.) Collection

Inventory of the Raymond W. Whittier papers

Summary Information

J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte
Whittier, Raymond W., 1887-1946
Raymond W. Whittier papers
Date [inclusive]
1.0 Linear feet
Papers, scrapbook, photo album, photograph and moving images (transferred onto DVD) from Col. Raymond W. Whittier, of the 38th Evacuation Unit, from 1942 to 1946.

Preferred Citation note

Raymond W. Whittier Collection. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

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Biographical/Historical note

Raymond W. Whittier matriculated through the University of Minnesota Medical School where he specialized in ophthalmology and otolaryngology. He was also a Fellow in the American College of Surgeons. He had served in World War I and over the years was sent to a variety of military installations around the United States, as well as the Panama Canal Zone, Zamboanga, and Corregidor. Whittier was transferred to Fort Bragg in North Carolina, from Camp Grant, Illinois in April of 1942. After he assumed command of the 38th Evac, the new medical staff soon learned that Col. Whittier was regular army, meaning that he considered himself to be an army officer first and a doctor second. The 38th was sent to Fort Bragg on April 15, 1942 for basic training and standard military instruction. From Fort Bragg, the unit was sent to England and later to Tunisia in North Africa, and then to Italy. Whittier was in command of the 38th Evac for about a year. He retired in early 1943 (while the 38th was stationed in North Africa) for health reasons. After his retirement, he returned to Little Rock, Arkansas where he set up his own private medical practice. He died in March 1, 1946.

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Biographical/Historical note

In 1940, Gen. George Marshall approved formation of the U.S. Army 38th Evacuation Hospital at the request of Charlotte doctors and nurses who desired to form a medical unit. Activated in March 1942, the Unit received military training at Fort Bragg. The Unit then went to England (August October, 1942); North Africa (November, 1942 September, 1943); and Italy (through July, 1945). The 38th Evac supported front line aid stations and mobile surgical units, treated disease, and transferred patients to general hospitals. Deactivation occurred following the Unit's tour of duty in Italy. Features in Time and Life and wire service stories by Richard Tregaskis made the 38th Evac one of the best known units during the war. [Tregaskis underwent brain surgery in the Hospital in Italy.] A detailed history is found in 38th Evac, a copy of which is located in the UNCC Special Collections, Dalton Reading Room.

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Scope and Contents note

This is a small collection of materials accumulated by Colonel Raymond W. Whittier and also by his widow and his son Raymond Whittier, junior. It consists of a variety of materials concerning Colonel Whittier's tenure as commanding officer of the 38th Evacuation Hospital, which originated in Charlotte, North Carolina in 1942. The collection contains a half dozen loose papers; a scrapbook filled with newspaper clippings; a small photo album containing black-and-white photographs and post cards; a photograph of Bob Hope, Frances Langford, Jerry Colonna, Skinnay Ennis with Variety Club members of Charlotte, NC.; and a brief film clip (copied onto DVD) showing troops drilling on the parade grounds at Fort Bragg. These materials span from 1942 until shortly after the death of Col. Whittier in 1946.

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Arrangement note

Arranged into five series: Papers, Photo album, Scrapbook, Photograph, and Moving images.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte

9201 University City Blvd.
Charlotte, NC, 28223

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use note

Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Acquired from Raymond W. Whittaker, junior, in March 2007.

Processing Information note

Processed by Robert A. McInnes, May 2007.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • United States. Army. Evacuation Hospital. (38th)

Personal Name(s)

  • Whittier, Raymond W., 1887-1946


  • Military hospitals, American
  • World War, 1939-1945--Medical care--United States

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Collection Inventory

Series 1 - Papers

Box Folder item

Special Order Number 1942. 1942-07-27

1 1 1

Letter from J. E. Dowd, editor of the Charlotte News, to Mrs. Raymond Whittier, concerning photos of Col. Whittier while stationed in England. 1942-09-21

1 1 2

Letter from J. E. Dowd, editor of the Charlotte News, to Mrs. Raymond Whittier, concerning unpublished photos of Col. Whittier while stationed in England. 1942-10-03

1 1 3

Letter from C. O. Kuester, Executive Vice President of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, to Col. R. W. Whittier, concerning the promotion of his son, Clarence Kuester, junior, to the rank of sergeant in the 38th Evacuation Unit. 1942-10-30

1 1 4

Itinerary (photocopy). 1943-04-22

1 1 5

Letter from J. E. Dowd, editor of the Charlotte News to Mrs. Raymond Whittier, concerning the death of Col. Raymond W. Whittier. 1946-03-22

1 1 6

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Series 2 - Photo Album

Scope and Contents note

The headings in this series, listed below, are copied from the pages of Col. Whittier’s photo album. Ordinarily, items found in an album are removed during archival processing in order to transfer them to a more stable backing; however, some of the items were pasted onto the original pages and could not be removed. For that reason all of the photos and cards were kept in the original album.

In and out of HEADQUARTERS BUILDING Fort Bragg, North Carolina; BARRACKS; MESS HALL; CANTONMENT AREA; SPRING LAKE; PERSONNEL; 38TH EVACUATION HOSPITAL; NURSES; “CO”; Col. R. W. Whittier; BARRACKS; AT DRILL; S.S. ANDES (ROYAL MAIL LINES); First Camp in ENGLAND TIDWORTH PARK (HANTS); RESERVED; BOURNEMOUTH; SALISBURY CATHEDRAL; Hospital at Taunton, Somerset, England. Occupied for a few weeks by 38th Evacuation Hospital; HOSPITAL BUILDINGS; NORTON MANOR near Taunton Estate taken over by the Army for cantonment; Manor grounds; Barrack Buildings Norton Manor Camp; LUCY BROOK HOTEL Taken for officers’ billets; Ward Buildings 2nd General Hospital Oxford, England; College Buildings in Oxford, England; The THAMES, Oxford; Christ Church Oxford; The TOWER BRIDGE London; Destruction around St. Paul’s Cathedral; Park in front of BUCKINGHAM PALACE; TOWER OF LONDON; ALONG THE THAMES RIVER; ON THE “QUEEN ELIZABETH”; HALIFAX from deck of “Queen Elizabeth”


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Series 3 - Scrapbook undated

Scope and Contents note

Whitter’s scrapbook contains newspaper clippings from at least five different newspapers, including: the Charlotte News, the Charlotte Observer, the New York World-Telegram, the Arkansas Gazette and the New York Sun. They all were clipped and mounted in 1942 and are listed in chronological order here. April 9 “Evacuation Unit Feted” April 11 “A Farewell: With Unit 38 goes a while community’s affection” April 15 “Hospital Evacuation Unit will Leave this Morning.” April 15 “War Brings changes in Officers’ Homes” April 21 “Doctors take to Military Life.” April 29 “Off to War” May 2 “Doctors get tough” May 3 “Martin L. Cannons entertain with Large tea at their home.” “Miss Martha Matthews is Bride of Capt. Henry S. Munroe, Jr.” May 4 “Miss Martha Matthew is Bride of Captain Henry Stokes Munroe Jr.” May 5 “Tea Honoring Col. and Mrs. Whittier is Given.” May 6 “Charlotte Nurses.” May 9 “Dr. C.H. Gay Enters Army.” May 16 “I Believe Everything,” by Dorothy Knox. May 17 “38th Evacuation Hospital is Growing.” May 19 “Commander” May 20 “Mrs. LaChance to Join Local Hospital Unit.” May 24 “Bob Hope to Play Hospital Unit Benefit Wednesday.” May 25 “Noted Singing Star to Join Bob Hope Show.” “Famous Stars Agree to Help Hospital Show.” May 26 “Bob Hope will head list here Wednesday.” May 27 “Charlotte’s Biggest Event.” “Bob Hope to Start Benefit Show at 9.” “Bob Hope and Stars in Person here tonight.” “Bob Hope & Company Come Piece by Piece.” May 28 “Hope Show Successful.” “Hope Hot, Show Saved, Tradition Preserved.” June 7 “Variety Club Gives Check” July 26 “Charlotte Families” Sep 16 “Charlotte Soldiers in England” Sep 19 “First Pictures of Charlotte Medical Unit on Duty in England.” “Charlotte Doctors in England will move to Firing Line when 2nd Front Opens” Sep 19 “I believe everything,” by Dorothy Knox. Sep 22 “I believe everything,” by Dorothy Knox. “Letters from England thrill Wives of Charlotte Doctors.” “US Medical Unit in England is Set for Second Front.” Oct 1 “I Believe Everything,” by Dorothy Knox Oct 11 [untitled article about the Whittier family] Oct 18 “Santa Claus for Servicemen.”


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Series 4 - Photograph

Scope and Contents note

[P382/1] Bob Hope, Frances Langford, Jerry Colonna, and Skinnay Ennis, with Variety Club members of Charlotte, NC.


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Series 5 - Moving images 1942

Scope and Contents note

[DVD382/1] A digital video disc (copied from a VHS tape, copied from motion picture film) depicting troops from the 38th Evac. going through close-order drill at Fort Bragg in May of 1942.


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