LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A collection of personal letters written overseas more than 80 years ago has a local woman searching for the rightful owners.
The letters are from World War II when more than 16 million Americans served in the military, many were sent abroad, far from loved ones including the man who wrote the letters.
His name was Jack Jones and he was a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army.
“I thought oh my God that’s got to be old, and then I started looking at the dates, and I’m like no way,” said Teresa Bergstrom, who found the letters preserved in an ammunition box.
The letters were part of the contents she bought online from a storage unit in Henderson.
“At first, I was going to throw them away but then I saw the significance of the letters that they were from WWII. I thought oh my God, I got to read these.”
One letter dated Dec. 8, 1941, was a pivotal time in world history. It read:
Yesterday about 10:30 we received news over the radio to the effect that Hawaii and the Philippines were attacked.Jack Jones
It was referring to the attack on Pearl Harbor:
“That’s just history right there. The guy is there. He’s in it,” Bergstrom said.
A WWII historian at UNLV took a look at the letters.
“He’s supplying munition to combat troops … and was organizing large convoys of trucks. He’s still following protocol. He’s telling you that he’s going somewhere, he doesn’t say where,” said Dr. Tedd Uldricks, UNLV historian.
They’re mostly written from overseas — places like England, France, and the Mediterranean and sent to an address in Portland, Oregon to C.F. Chambers, the writer’s mother.
“He loved his mother very much and just kept in touch with her about everything. All parts of the war and his life,” Bergstrom said.
She is undertaking a mission of her own to try and get the letters back to the family.
“This is history that you know you don’t just throw it aside because I almost did. I almost threw everything out and then when I saw what it was I changed my mind real quick because I want the family to have these back,” she said.