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Robert L. Wilson transcript

 Collection — Box: Single Folder Collections - 2006 Box, Folder: 06.0130 - Folder 1
Identifier: 02.06.0130

Scope and Contents

The Sergeant Robert L. Wilson transcript describes his experiences as a truck driver in the 63rd Infantry Division in France and Germany during World War II.

Wilson describes his basic training, the poor leadership among his officers, the backgrounds of his comrades, German civilians, traveling from city to city, losing supplies, the Allied victory, seeing Dachau, the Nuremberg Trials, coming home, and resuming his education at Duke University.


  • 1939-2005
  • Majority of material found in 1939-1946
  • Date acquired: 06/23/2006


Language of Materials

English .

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to all researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish, exhibit, or broadcast works from the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience must be requested and granted in writing by the director of the Institute. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Institute on World War II as the owner of the physical items and the copyright holder. Possession of a copy of an item does not constitute permission to publish, exhibit, or broadcast it. The Institute on World War II and the Human Experience reserves the right to refuse permission to individuals and publishers who have not complied with its policies. Permission fees must be paid before images are provided. Please contact the director of the Institute on World War II and the Human Experience for current publication and duplication rates.

Biographical or Historical Information

Robert L. Wilson was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1923 and grew up in East Orange, New Jersey. Wilson was attending Duke University when he was drafted in March 1943. He wanted to finish his education, but the draft board gave him no option to stay at Duke. He completed basic training as a supply truck driver at Camp Breckenridge in Kentucky, Camp Blanding in Florida, and Camp Van Dorn in Mississippi. Wilson went overseas on January 1, 1945, on USS Mount Vernon to Marseilles, France to aid the remaining forces at Battle of the Bulge. His unit then broke through the Siegfried Line and then crossed the Rhine River into Germany.

Once in Germany Wilson was tasked with moving troops, prisoners of war, and supplies across the country. He was ordered to bring supplies to Dachau where he first saw concentration camp victims and survivors. Wilson's unit was broken up, and he was transferred to the 36th Infantry Division and then to the IV Corps Headquarters in Esslingen am Neckar near Stuttgart where he worked as an office clerk. Wilson got to view the Nuremberg War Crime Trials for a day and saw several of the perpetrators. He traveled home in March 1945 and was discharged shortly after as a sergeant. After the war,  he resumed school at Duke University where he earned a Bachelor's degree in History. He met his wife while at school and married soon after. Wilson became an FBI agent and retired in 1978.


1.00 folders

Source of Acquisition


Method of Acquisition

Reichert Program for Oral History

Conducted by Julia Brock on January 10, 2005

Robert L. Wilson transcript 02.06.0130
Julianna Witt
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Institute on WWII and the Human Experience Repository

Tallahassee FL 32306 US