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Veterans History Project Service Summary:

  • War or Conflict: World War, 1939-1945
  • Branch of Service: Marine Corps
  • Service Unit/Ship: H Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment
  • Location of Service: Quantico, Virginia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Camp Lejeune, North Carolina; Guadalcanal (Solomon Islands); Australia; Boston, Massachusetts; South America
  • Highest Rank: Captain
  • Collection Number: AFC/2001/001/23662

View full service history

"My most memorable moment was the day I died" (Audio Interview, 2:28)

William Whorf participated in the battle of Tenaru during the conflict on Guadalcanal. His searing account of that battle and of the tremendous losses that the Japanese suffered reflect the elation that the troops felt in victory. His account of two Japanese soldiers who suffered different fates during the battle is a fascinating look at human frailty in the face of the horrors of war. Whorf says that these different fates were "the worst thing that could happen to a human being and the finest thing that could happen to a human being." One soldier launched himself against an anti-tank gun that killed his fellow soldiers and was torn into two pieces after grabbing the muzzle; the other emerged from the bodies of his fellow soldiers in order to surrender.

William H. Whorf Collection
Interview / Recording

Transcript

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About this Item

Title

  • William H. Whorf Collection

Names

  • U.S. House of Representatives/Cliff Stearns
  • Williams, Shawna
  • Stearns, Cliff
  • Whorf, William H.

Home State

  • Florida

Headings

  • -  Whorf, William H.
  • -  World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal Narratives
  • -  United States. Marine Corps.

Repository

  • Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Gender

  • Male

Status

  • veteran

Service History

  • World War, 1939-1945

    • Branch of Service: Marine Corps
    • Service Unit/Ship: H Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment
    • Location of Service: Quantico, Virginia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Camp Lejeune, North Carolina; Guadalcanal (Solomon Islands); Australia; Boston, Massachusetts; South America
    • Highest Rank: Captain
    • Dates of Service: 1939-1946
    • Military Status: veteran

Materials

  • Computer File: CD [1 item] -- Electronic file of manuscript (collected 2004-05-30; 2009-03-07)
  • Manuscript: Transcript [1 item] -- Transcription of audio recording (collected 2009-03-06)
  • Audio: Microcassette [1 item] -- Oral history interview (collected 2004-05-30)
  • Audio: CD [1 item] -- Reference copy (collected 2007-11-07; 2007-11-07)

Collection Number

  • AFC/2001/001/23662

Cite as

  • William H. Whorf Collection (AFC/2001/001/23662), Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Online Format

  • audio
  • online text

Additional Metadata Formats

Rights & Access

Using VHP Material in Publication or Exhibition

The Veterans History Project (VHP) at the Library of Congress collects, preserves and makes accessible the firsthand recollections of U.S. military veterans who served from World War I through more recent conflicts and peacekeeping missions, so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand what they saw, did and felt during their service. The Veterans History Project Collection includes oral histories along with documentary materials such as original letters, diaries, photographs, and memoirs.

Veterans and interviewers contribute these materials to the Library for scholarly and educational purposes, retaining any copyright they may hold. Therefore, permission must be obtained before using the interview or other materials in exhibition or publication. Researchers or others who would like to make further use of these materials should contact the Veterans History Project for assistance.

As a publicly supported institution, the Library generally does not own rights to material in its collections. Therefore, it does not charge permission fees for use of such material and cannot give or deny permission to publish or otherwise distribute material in its collections. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item from the Library’s collections and for securing any necessary permissions rests with persons desiring to use the item.

Please contact us with questions.

Obtaining Copies of VHP Materials

In order for VHP materials to be duplicated, we must receive written permission from the interviewee for you to obtain a copy of the recording unless the proposed use is limited to personal use, research, or other uses permissible by copyright law. If the interviewee is deceased, their next-of-kin may grant written permission.

Please contact VHP for assistance if you need to contact a veteran for permission to use their materials in exhibition or publication, or if you have received permission from the veteran and need access to high-resolution copies of VHP collection materials.

Citing VHP Materials

Please use the following formats when citing Veterans History Project materials (substituting the appropriate name and collection ID number).

Materials as a whole:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Manuscript material:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Memoirs (MS02), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Transcript (MS04), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Correspondence (MS01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Recording:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Audio recording (SR01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Video recording (MV01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Photograph:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Photographs (PH01), photographer unknown, Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.
  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Photographs (PH03-PH14), Ralph Williams photographer, Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Computer file:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Computer file (CF01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Artifact:

  • John P. Snodgrass (AFC 2001/001/[VHP collection]), Artifact (AR01), Veterans History Project Collection, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress.

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

U.S. House Of Representatives/Cliff Stearns, Shawna Williams, Cliff Stearns, and William H Whorf. William H. Whorf Collection. 1939. Personal Narrative. https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.23662/.

APA citation style:

U.S. House Of Representatives/Cliff Stearns, Williams, S., Stearns, C. & Whorf, W. H. (1939) William H. Whorf Collection. [Personal Narrative] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.23662/.

MLA citation style:

U.S. House Of Representatives/Cliff Stearns, et al. William H. Whorf Collection. 1939. Personal Narrative. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.23662/>.