Held by The Filson Historical Society
Creator: Harrison Family
Title: Papers, ca. 1930s – 1990 (bulk 1941-1945)
Rights: For information regarding literary and copyright interest for these papers, contact the Curator of Special Collections.
Size of Collection: 1 cubic foot
Locator Number: Mss./A/ H318
William B. Harrison (1889-1948) was mayor of Louisville, Kentucky from 1927 until 1933. He was elected to a two-year term as mayor after the Kentucky Court of Appeals threw out the election of Republican Arthur A. Will. When his term as mayor ended, Harrison became president of the Louisville Industrial Foundation. Harrison married Margaret W. Allis in 1912. Together they had five children: William H. Harrison (1913-1990), Winston P. Harrison (1914-?), Margaret Harrison (1921- ), Penelope Harrison (?), and Dorothy Harrison (1925- ).
Both Winston and William H. Harrison served in the U.S. Army during the Second World War. William H. “Bill” Harrison, a graduate of Princeton University, served as Battery Commander of Battery C of the 27 th Field Artillery Battalion. He was deployed to the European theatre in May of 1942, and achieved the rank of Captain while overseas. On December 6, 1942, Harrison and 33 other men were captured by the Germans near Tabouba, Tunisia. Harrison was taken to German prison camp #21 at Chieti, Italy. He escaped in the fall of 1943, as the Germans were moving prisoners to Germany. In May of 1945, Harrison was again sent overseas to India where he served through the remainder of the war.
William H. Harrison married Louise Taylor with whom he had four children. Louise T. Harrison (1940- ), William H. Harrison, Jr. (1946- ), Phillip T. Harrison (1948- ), and David W. Harrison (1958- ).
Scope and Content Note
This collection consists primarily of correspondence between members of the Harrison family of Louisville, Kentucky. Most of the correspondence is between William H. Harrison (“Bill”) and his wife Louise Taylor Harrison (“Wege”) during William’s deployment overseas during World War II. The collection also includes correspondence with other members of the Harrison and Taylor families. The majority of the collection concerns the periods of Bill’s deployment overseas between 1942 and 1945. Letters describe Bill’s training period in Northern Ireland, his capture by the Germans in Tunisia in December of 1942, and his internment in a prison camp in Italy between December of 1942 and the fall of 1943. Later correspondence concerns his deployment to India in 1945.
Folder 1: Correspondence, ca.1930s – 1941
Folder 2: Correspondence, April 1 – 15, 1942
Folder 3: Correspondence, April 16-30, 1942
Folder 4: Correspondence, May 1-20, 1942
Folder 5: Correspondence, May 21-31, 1942
Folder 6: Correspondence, June 1-10, 1942
Folder 7: Correspondence, June 11-20, 1942
Folder 8: Correspondence, June 21-30, 1942
Folder 9: Correspondence, July 1-15, 1942
Folder 10: Correspondence, July 16-31, 1942
Folder 11: Correspondence, August 1-10, 1942
Folder 12: Correspondence, August 11-19, 1942
Folder 13: Correspondence, August 20-31, 1942
Folder 14: Correspondence, September 1942
Folder 15: Correspondence, October 1942-March 1943
Folder 16: Correspondence, April – October 1943
Folder 17: Correspondence, November – December 1943
Folder 18: Correspondence, 1944
Folder 19: Correspondence, May – June 1945
Folder 20: Correspondence, July 1-20, 1945
Folder 21: Correspondence, July 21 – September 1945
Folder 22: Correspondence, ca. 1940s -1990; undated
Folder 23: Newspaper clippings
Folder 24: Misc.
Fort Dix (N.J.)
Louisiana – Description and travel
Louisville (Ky.) – Social life and customs
Michigan, Lake – Description and travel
United States. Army – Military life
United States. Army. Artillery Regiment, 27th
World War, 1939-1945 – India
World War, 1939-1945 – Italy
World War, 1939-1945 – Northern Ireland
World War, 1939-1945 – Prisoners and prisons
World War, 1939-1945 – Women – United States