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Thomas E. Moore Second World War correspondence

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: 2016-084-w-r

Content Description

This collection consists of approximately 400 letters from Lieutenant Thomas E. “Gene” Moore, United States Army, to his wife, Mary “Peggy” Moore, during and after the Second World War. Lieutenant Moore wrote to his wife frequently while in communications and infantry training at several Army bases around the country. He then transferred to another infantry unit and was stationed in Hawaii, where he continued infantry training until the end of the war. He continued correspondence as he was shipped to Japan for occupation duties until early 1946.

There are also three letters from friends to Lieutenant and Mrs. Moore and one letter to Mary Montgomery (her name before marriage) about work at a Quaker camp in 1942, as well as two photo albums of Lt. Moore during the war.


  • Creation: 1942 January 1 - 1946 January 18

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

There are no restrictions on the use of this material except where previously copyrighted material is concerned. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all permissions. For further copyright information, please contact the archivist.

Biographical / Historical

Thomas Eugene Moore was born January 4, 1922 in Holdredge, Nebraska. A shortening of his middle name earned him the nickname "Gene," the name he uses throughout his correspondence with Mary Ruth Montgomery, who went by the name "Peggy" because her uncle liked to sing "Peg of My Heart" whenever she came around as a child. Born January 11, 1921 in Palisade, Colorado, her family, through a series of moves around the country similar to the Moores, found themselves in Arizona while Gene and Peggy were still children.

They met in Tuscon at a Wesley Foundation meeting in February, 1942 and shared their first kiss two months later on the first day of April.

Three days later, April 4, 1942, Gene joined the United States Army from Phoenix. He had participated in his high school ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps) and CMTC (Citizen Military Training Camp) prior to his service while attending the University of Arizona. In 1941 he was too young to earn his reserve officer commission, but the age was lowered to 18 after Pearl Harbor and the breakout of the war. He boarded a train in Phoenix on April 11 to begin training in Los Angeles.

He reported to Company B, 81st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment as a Second Lieutenant the next day and his military correspondence to his girlfriend Peggy began. He served from April 1942 to February 1944 with the 125th Infantry Regiment, moving between bases in Palo Alto, CA, Fort Benning, GA, and Fort Ord, CA. He and Peggy married during that time on August 14, 1943. He was transferred in February 1944 to the 391st Regiment, 98th Infantry Division based in Hawaii where he spent the war training. He explained to Peggy in a letter on their second anniversary in 1945 how he felt having never fought in the war and the scene in Hawaii at war's end. Lt. Moore was eventually transferred to Japan as part of the occupation forces where he stayed until the correspondence ends in January 1946. The 391st was inactivated February 16, 1946 in Japan (from the Center for Military History, United States Army).


2 Linear Feet (2 cartons)

Language of Materials



This collection consists of approximately 400 letters from Lt. Thomas Eugene Moore, USA, to his wife, Mary Ruth Montgomery Moore, during and after the Second World War.


This collection is arranged by material type and date:

  • Series 1: Correspondence from Gene to Peggy
  • Series 2: Correspondence from Gene to parents
  • Series 3: Correspondence to Gene and Peggy
  • Series 4: Photographs
  • Series 5: Book.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of the children of Thomas E. and Mary M. Moore. Donated by John T. Moore.

Finding Aid for the Thomas E. Moore Second World War correspondence
Andrew Harman
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Center for American War Letters Archives, Frank Mt. Pleasant Library of Special Collections and Archives Repository

Leatherby Libraries
Chapman University
Orange CA 92866 United States