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Ethel Meyer Finley in uniform [1943]

Veterans History Project Service Summary:

  • War or Conflict: World War, 1939-1945
  • Branch of Service: WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots)
  • Location of Service: Winona, Minnesota; Sweetwater, Texas; Randolph Field, Texas; Love Field, Dallas, Texas; Maxwell Field, Alabama; Shaw Field, South Carolina
  • Collection Number: AFC/2001/001/24653

View full service history

"Teaching had always been a woman's profession and so consequently there wasn't that much objection, and the men wanted to go to combat anyway." (Audio Interview, 15:21)

Minnesota-born Ethel Meyer Finley began her flying career while at Winona Teachers' College in September 1940, when she was accepted into the Civilian Pilot Training Program. Aviation pioneer Max Conrad offered her a job operating a link trainer, the forerunner to the simulator of today, which allowed pilots to establish aircraft instrument proficiency without leaving the ground. In December 1942, she was invited to join the WASP and was part of the fifth class to be trained in Sweetwater, Texas. She eventually flew as co-pilot transporting generals and other non-flying personnel, test-piloted planes after they were repaired, and taught pilots as part of a squadron of male instructors. In 21 months of active service, Finley logged a total of 1074 hours in the air. (NOTE: The transcript in this collection is from a 1998 interview with the veteran; the digitized interview was conducted in 2004.)

Ethel Meyer Finley Collection
Interview / Recording

Transcript

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About this Item

Title

  • Ethel Meyer Finley Collection

Names

  • Gropman, Alan
  • National Defense University
  • Finley, Ethel Meyer

Home State

  • Delaware

Headings

  • -  Finley, Ethel Meyer
  • -  World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal Narratives
  • -  United States. WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots).

Repository

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

Gender

  • Female

Race

  • White

Status

  • veteran

Service History

  • World War, 1939-1945

    • Branch of Service: WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots)
    • Location of Service: Winona, Minnesota; Sweetwater, Texas; Randolph Field, Texas; Love Field, Dallas, Texas; Maxwell Field, Alabama; Shaw Field, South Carolina
    • Dates of Service: 1943-1944
    • Entrance into Service: Enlisted
    • Military Status: veteran

Materials

  • Audio: CD [1 item] -- Reference copy (collected 2004-11-26; 2004-11-26)
  • Manuscript: Transcript [1 item] -- Transcription of audio recording (collected 2001)
  • Manuscript: Printed matter [1 item] -- (collected unknown)
  • Audio: Audio Cassette [1 item] -- Oral history interview (collected 2004-11-26)

Collection Number

  • AFC/2001/001/24653

Cite as

  • Ethel Meyer Finley Collection (AFC/2001/001/24653), Veterans History Project, American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Online Format

  • audio
  • image
  • online text

IIIF Presentation Manifest

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:

Gropman, Alan, National Defense University, and Ethel Meyer Finley. Ethel Meyer Finley Collection. 1943. Personal Narrative. https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.24653/.

APA citation style:

Gropman, A., National Defense University & Finley, E. M. (1943) Ethel Meyer Finley Collection. [Personal Narrative] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.24653/.

MLA citation style:

Gropman, Alan, National Defense University, and Ethel Meyer Finley. Ethel Meyer Finley Collection. 1943. Personal Narrative. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/afc2001001.24653/>.