Conversations with Strangers – An Oral History Project

In October 2008, a series of interviews were conducted by students from Norwich University College of the Arts (NUCA) with 2nd Air Division, United States Army Air Force veterans who were stationed in Norfolk during World War Two. The interviews were filmed in Dallas, Texas, during the 61st annual convention of the 2nd Air Division Association.

NUCA in Dallas

NUCA students in Dallas, TX (2008)

Recently added to our YouTube Channel, the students recorded interviews with:

Frank and Robert Birmingham (458th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2) (Part 3)

William and Betty Berry (Bill served with 389th and 93rd Bomb Groups) (Part 1)

Ray Lemons (445th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2) (Part 3)

Robert (Lee) Swofford (445th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2)

Jack Dyson (445th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2)

Jack Kingsbery (458th Bomb Group) (Part 1)

Oak Mackey (392nd Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2)

Dale Dyer (458th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2)

Herb Schwartz (445th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2)

James H McClain (389th Bomb Group) (Part 1) (Part 2) (Part 3)

(The above list contains all the links for each portion of the interviews found on YouTube)

This oral history project set out to capture the experiences of both 2nd Air Division (USAAF) veterans and the people of East Anglia during Word War Two, by gathering oral histories from USA veterans and also their “UK friends” attending the 2nd Air Division Association Convention.

The project generated a short 5 minute film ‘Conversations with Strangers’ for use by schools and young people for raising awareness of the contribution made by American airmen (and women) to the 2nd World War and the impact their presence had on the local community while highlighting the continuing “special relationship” between the people of East Anglia, and the people of the United States.

The 2nd Air Division Memorial Library gratefully acknowledge the funding received from the US Embassy in London, which enabled the students to travel to and attend the 2nd Air Division Association Convention in Dallas.

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