Underwood, Henry L. Papers, 1924-1955

Held by The Filson Historical Society

Creator: Underwood, Henry L.

Title: Papers, 1924-1955

Rights: For information regarding literary and copyright interest for these letters, contact the Curator of Special Collections.

Size of Collection: 0.33 cubic feet

Locator Number: Mss. A U55

Scope and Content Note

Collection includes 42 letters, most of which were written by relatives and acquaintances to Henry Underwood, 374 th Engineer Battalion (Separate) while he was stationed at Camp Gordon, GA, and Camp Hood, TX, in 1942 and 1943. Some of the letters were written by female admirers. The letters from his mother and sisters provide some insight regarding the hardships experienced by African American families during World War II and of the wartime economic conditions in Cincinnati, OH.

Biographical Note

Henry L. Underwood was born ca. 1913, the only son of Carrie Louise Underwood. He and his four sisters grew up in Cincinnati, OH. Although this close African American family was of modest means, Henry and his sisters achieved some degree of success. He was employed at Transcontinental & Western Air, Inc., in Indianapolis, IN, in the early 1940s. He entered the U.S. Army , 374 th Engineer Battalion (Separate), in the spring of 1942 and was stationed initially at Camp Gordon, GA, and then at Camp Hood, TX, in August, 1942.

Folder List

Folder 1: Correspondence, Sept., 1924; April – July, 1942

Folder 2: Correspondence, Aug. – December, 1942

Folder 3: Correspondence, Feb. – April, 1943

Folder 4: Correspondence, May – August, 1943

Folder 5: Miscellaneous

Subject Headings

American National Red Cross

Business enterprises, Black

Camp Gordon (Richmond County, Ga.)

Cincinnati Tennis Club

Fort Hood (Tex.)


Underwood, Henry L. ca. 1913-

United States. Army – African American troops

United States. Army. Engineer Battalion, 374th (Separate)

Wilberforce University

World War, 1939-1945 – Economic aspects – Ohio – Cincinnati

World War, 1939-1945 – Participation, African American – History – Sources

World War, 1939-1945 – War work – American Red Cross

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