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The Way We Were: 1943-1945

Soldier Paul Olson and Chellis Evanson (right), a history professor at Luther College, Decorah, Iowa, who served as news bureau director from 1928 to 1950, look at a bulletin board with photos of men and women in the armed services.

Soldier Paul Olson and Chellis Evanson (right), a history professor at Luther College, Decorah, Iowa, who served as news bureau director from 1928 to 1950, look at a bulletin board with photos of men and women in the armed services. While serving in World War II, Evanson published a Luther College newsletter called "Scuttlebutt" from 1943 to 1945. The newsletter connected Luther alumni and students who were serving in the military.

Letters, postcards and photos sent for the newsletter reveal how memories of Luther helped sustain more than 800 service members. One of them, Harris "The Mullet" Kaasa, contributed: "But this year all is not very well. Perhaps next spring, and I certainly hope by the spring of '47, we can enjoy a real old-time Iowa spring once again. The war weighs heavily on the shoulders and souls of peace-loving people the world over."

Evanson's work is featured in Luther Goes to War (iUniverse, 2008) by Marv Slind, associate professor of history and program director of museum studies at Luther.


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