WALTER L. GALSON PAPERS
SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE
Photograph albums and scrapbooks comprise the bulk of the collection. Nine photograph albums span 1942 to 1945 and include photographic prints obtained by Galson from numerous sources. Four scrapbooks span 1946 to 1985 and document post-World War II veteran's activities. Galson's National Association correspondence and limited National Association administrative papers also form a portion of the collection.
Walter L. Galson's National Association correspondence spans 1946 to 1989. Also included are limited administrative records, which pertain to 10th Mountain Division memorial services, publicity and reunions. Numerous National Association rosters, annotated with Galson's notes, complete the series.
Nine photograph albums, which Galson created and arranged into three subject areas, comprise the bulk of the series. 8x10 U.S. Army Signal Corps photographs form the bulk of the material. Each album relies heavily on Galson's hand-written captions, limited maps, clippings and other notes to document the experiences of the 10th Mountain Division during World War II.
The first group, Amphibious Task Force 9: Kiska Island Campaign June-December 1943 comprises three albums. A fourth, closely-related album is titled Amphibious Task Force 9: A Picture Story of Kiska Island (Aleutians). The second group comprises two albums, which document winter warfare training. The first is titled Mountain and Winter Warfare Training, Mt. Rainier and Ft. Lewis, Washington; Camp Hale, Colorado 1941-1943, while the second is titled U.S. Army Mountain and Winter Warfare Training: United States, Italy, Japan, Korea, Austria. A third group of three albums is entitled This was Italy: 10th Mtn. Div. in Combat, Jan-May 1945. Individual photographs, depicting regimental insignias, the Brazilian victory celebration, the reactivated 10th Mountain Division and a Senator Robert Dole presidential campaign event complete the series.
Four scrapbooks, created by Galson during his tenure as president of the Washington D.C. Chapter of the National Association of the 10th Mountain Division, form the series. The scrapbooks span post-war activities of the National Association from the formation of the first Alumni Association through the reactivation of the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, New York in 1985.
Language of Materials
Materials are in English.
The collection is open for research.
All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from material in the collection should be discussed with the appropriate librarian or archivist. Permission for publication may be given on behalf of the Denver Public Library as the owner of the physical item. It is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained by the customer. The Library does not assume any responsibility for infringement of copyright or publication rights of the manuscript held by the writer, heirs, donors, or executors. Reproduction restrictions are decided on a case-by-case basis.
Walter L. Galson (1918-1994) was born in Nuremberg, Germany and grew up in southern Bavaria and Austria. As a teenager, he developed an early interest in mountaineering and excelled in ski racing and mountain climbing. While living in Munich, Germany, Galson encountered Adolph Hitler on several occasions. He was once congratulated by Hermann Goering for his performance during a ski race. Assigned to join a mountain battalion of the German Army, Galson decided to study in America, and received a deferment. An uncle sponsored nineteen-year-old Galson, who moved to the United States in 1937. He lived briefly in Tennessee and later attended the University of Michigan.
While Galson studied in America, troubles beset his family. Although Galson's father had been decorated by Austrian Emperor Franz Josef for heroic service in the Austrian Army during World War I, the Nazis imprisoned him briefly at the Dachau concentration camp in 1938 due to his Jewish heritage. In 1939, Galson’s family was permitted to emigrate to England, where his mother was killed during German bombing attacks in 1940.
Though denied an opportunity to enlist in the American Army as a non-citizen, Galson discovered that he could volunteer to be drafted. He was called up for service in October 1941 and assigned to the artillery school at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. However, his extensive mountaineering background quickly earned him a transfer to the then newly formed 87th Mountain Infantry Regiment, which he joined at Fort Lewis, Washington.
Galson participated in the Kiska Island invasion in 1943. He also trained at Camp Hale, Colorado and Camp Swift, Texas. During combat operations in Italy, he was awarded the Silver Star Medal for gallantry. In addition, he received a Bronze Star Medal and was wounded in action. Galson also received the British Military Medal, one of Great Britain's highest awards for enlisted soldiers. King George VI of England presented the medal, and Galson was the only member of the 10th Mountain Division to be so honored.
Following the War, Galson graduated from the University of Michigan with a bachelor's degree as well as a master's degree in political science. Later, he did graduate work in economics at the University of London. Galson worked for twenty-five years as an information systems specialist for the Department of the Army. He was very active with the National Association of the 10th Mountain Division, serving as Washington D.C. chapter president, National Association executive vice president and as national historian. He and his wife, Jean Pell Galson, had two children. Galson died of cardiac arrest at the age of 77 on August 28, 1994 at his home in Alexandria, Virginia.
1 Boxes (1 linear foot)
4 OV Boxes
Other Finding Aids
Gift, Walter L. Galson, unknown; Gift, Nancy Bogen, 2010.
Number of Boxes: 1 (1 linear foot)
Number of OV Boxes: 4
Number of Photo OVBoxes: 7
PROCESSED AND ENCODED BY:
August 2010, August 2011
- Camp Hale (Colo.) Subject Source: Naf
- Camp Swift (Tex.) Subject Source: Naf
- Correspondence. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Galson, Walter L. -- 1918-1994 -- Archives.
- Military maneuvers -- Cold weather conditions. Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- National Association of the 10th Mountain Division, Inc.
- Photograph albums. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Photographs. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Rosters. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Scrapbooks. Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Ski troops. Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Soldiers -- United States -- Correspondence. Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- United States. -- Army. -- Infantry Regiment, 87th.
- United States. -- Army. -- Mountain Division, 10th.
- WALTER L. GALSON PAPERS
- Revised August 2011
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
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