Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with James E. Wilson, September 3rd, 1987

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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00:00:02 - Interview introduction

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Partial Transcript: Ok, I'm Col. Arthur L. Kelly. It's September the 3rd, 1987.

Segment Synopsis: Col. Arthur Kelly introduces World War II Veteran James E. Wilson, who served as a crew member of PT 349 in the South Pacific.

Keywords: New Britain; New Guinea; PT Boats 349; Philippines; Southwest Pacific

Subjects: Torpedo-boats.

00:01:15 - First mission

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Partial Transcript: Well our first mission, we were in the process of relieving Squadron 21.

Segment Synopsis: James Wilson describes his first mission in New Britain. He also gives his thoughts and feelings while being trapped by the Japanese and on his first mission.

Keywords: New Britain(New Guinea); New Guinea Campaign

Subjects: New Britain Island (Papua New Guinea).

00:26:07 - Capturing prisoners

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Partial Transcript: There was an incident where you were involved with capturing some prisoners. Could you tell us about that?

Segment Synopsis: James Wilson tells about capturing Japanese prisoners in New Guinea.

Keywords: Cape Sansapor; New Guinea; Prisoners of War (POW); capturing prisoners; surrender

Subjects: Japan.; New Guinea.; Prisoners of war.

00:34:47 - Sinking ships

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Partial Transcript: Can you kind of describe an instance where you sank a ship and there were survivors in the water?

Segment Synopsis: He describes the strategies used to sink enemy ships and attack the men. He also talks about how many boats from their squadron were lost as well.

Keywords: Ships; barges; boat attacks

Subjects: Torpedo-boats.

00:45:54 - Most frightening experience

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Partial Transcript: Can you give me the most frightening experience you had?

Segment Synopsis: He tells of his most frightening experience in the war as his squadron was trying to establish another base. He also describes what the Kamikaze attacks were like.

Keywords: Kamikaze attacks; Leyte Gulf; Philippines; personal reflections

Subjects: Kamikaze pilots.; Philippines.

01:01:29 - Chaos on the boat

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Partial Transcript: As you go up the side of that ship now, and its chaos, right?

Segment Synopsis: James Wilson continues to talks about being attacked by the Japanese in more detail. He describes the chaos and disorder in helping to save fellow soldiers.

Keywords: Japanese Imperial Army; enemy attacks

Subjects: Japan.; Torpedo boats.

01:14:33 - Aftermath

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Partial Transcript: As you were moving over there can you describe the conditions of what you saw?

Segment Synopsis: He explains moving to the bay after the Japanese attacks, the soldiers that were wounded and their reactions. He also talks about his feeling towards the Japanese after the attack.

Keywords: Japanese people; bomb attacks; war injuries

Subjects: Japan.; War wounds.

01:29:37 - Family history

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Partial Transcript: Quickly summarize, I want to get some family data here.

Segment Synopsis: Mr. Wilson gives his family history, tells who he married and who his children are. The interview is concluded.

Keywords: Children; Family History; Family Members--Spouses

Subjects: Family history.