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Albert and Frank Dietrich Letters

 Collection
Identifier: MS-2755
Collection consists of copies of letters to and from both Albert and Frank Dietrich detailing Frank's military service (including time spent in the Phillipines and Japan) and Albert's stance as a conscientious objector during the years of 1943-1947. The letters detail their debates over many issues, including the war. There are also many letters written from Frank to his wife, Chris, spanning from 1944-1947.

Dates

  • 1939-1998 (bulk 1943-1947)

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.

Extent

1 Linear Feet

Abstract

Collection consists of copies of letters to and from both Albert and Frank Dietrich detailing Frank's military service and Albert's stance as a conscientious objector during the years of 1943-1947. The letters detail their debates over many issues, including the war. There are also many letters written from Frank to his wife, Chris, spanning from 1944-1947.

Biographical/Historical Note

Frank Ryall Dietrich and Albert Giles Dietrich, identical twins, were born on January 4th, 1914 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Frank Adam (1878-1950) and Louise (Edwards) Dietrich (c. 1880-1941). Both Frank and Albert attended the University of Pittsburgh as undergraduates and then both went on to earn their Master's Degree in Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh. Despite practicing the same profession, child welfare workers, Frank and Albert held different beliefs about war and pacifism. Frank was drafted into the Air Force in 1941, and was sent to the Philippines in 1945 to prepare for the potential invasion of Japan. Albert obtained "CO" (conscientious objector) status, allowing him to serve in the Civilian Public Service (CPS). Albert morally objected the violence or war, while Frank increasingly believed in its necessity due to the action he saw. The brothers wrote each other hundreds of letters during their service, containing debates about pacifism, their experiences in the Philippines and the CPS, conversations about conscription, and their daily lives. Many years after the war, Frank's wife Christine Dietrich helped the two publish a book with the letters they wrote during World War II. Albert Dietrich died on June 17th, 2002 in Harborside, Maine. Frank Dietrich died on December 14th, 2009 in La Junta, Colorado.

Arrangement

Collection consists of one box.

Acquisition Note

Collection was donated by Scott Bennett on October 25, 2005

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

Contact:
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA
865-974-4480