Joe Olexa letters

Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, June 27, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated June 27, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated June 28, 1944. In the letter, Agnes describes the hot weather…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, July 4, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated July 4, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated July 5, 1944. In the letter, Agnes describes her relief in…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, August 17, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated August 17, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated August 18, 1944. In the letter, Agnes expresses how lonesome…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, August 27, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated August 27, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated August 28, 1944. In the letter, Agnes expresses her happiness…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, October 23, 1944

Handwritten letter with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated October 23, 1944. In the letter, Agnes shares her family's good news of the birth of her baby brother, along with her excitement for a new fur coat and a recent trip to the…
Birth announcement from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, October 24, 1944

Birth announcement and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated October 24, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated October 24, 1944. In the card, Agnes announces the birth of…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, October 24, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated October 24, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated October 25, 1944. In the letter, Agnes confides that she…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, November 12, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated November 12, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated November 14, 1944. In the letter, Agnes talks about her…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, November 14, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated November 14, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated November 15, 1944. In the letter, Agnes expresses her…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, November 20, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated November 20, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated November 20, 1944. In the letter, Agnes writes of her…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, November 22, 1944

Handwritten letter with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated November 22, 1944. In the letter, Agnes describes her adventures with Helen and Gaylord in New York, going to the movies and exploring the countryside in search of turkeys…
Letter from Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, December 3, 1944

Handwritten letter and envelope with transcript by Agnes Van Der Weide to Joe Olexa, dated December 3, 1944. The envelope is sent from 1913 Berkley Ave. S.W., Grand Rapids, Michigan, dated December 7, 1944. In the letter, Agnes describes her trip…

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Title

Joe Olexa letters

Creator

Olexa, Joseph P.
Van Der Weide, Agnes

Description

Collection of letters between Joseph Olexa and Agnes Van Der Weide, dating from 1941 to 1946. Olexa fought in the U.S. Army 26th Infantry Division, Company "L", and eventually attained the rank of Staff Sergeant. Over the course of World War II, Olexa was engaged in North Africa, Sicily, France, Belgium, and Germany. He fought in the Invasion of Normandy, the liberation of Belgium, the Battle of Hürtgen Forest, and the Battle of the Bulge. While deployed abroad, Olexa maintained regular correspondence with Agnes Van Der Weide, a young woman he met through mutual friends. Agnes was the daughter of Benjamin and Minnie (Ter Meer) Van Der Weide. The Van Der Weide family lived in Jamestown, Michigan and Ashburnham, Massachusetts until moving to Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1943.

While the letters do not contain details relating to Olexa's military activities, due to heavy censorship of soldiers' correspondence by the U.S. Army, the letters do depict the daily activities of an infantry soldier and illustrate the blossoming romance between the two. Joseph and Agnes were married July 23, 1945, and lived in West Michigan until Agnes's death in 1993. Joseph Olexa died December 3, 2000. They were survived by their son, Karl Olexa.

Coverage

World War II

Date

1941/1946

Rights

Subject

United States. Army. Infantry Division, 26th
World War, 1939-1945
Soldiers -- Michigan
Correspondence

Publisher

Grand Valley State University. University Libraries. Special Collections & University Archives

Identifier

RHC-93

Language

eng


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