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"Many girls had and kept a sense of humor. All was not fun, however, and heartache was not relegated to men only. There were 'Dear Jane' as well as 'Dear John' letters." Interview, 8:01

   Marie Brand Voltzke
Collection image
Marie Brand Voltzke in full dress uniform Washington D.C. in September 1945
War: World War, 1939-1945
Branch: WAVES (Navy Women's Reserve)
Unit: US Naval Communication Intelligence
Service Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma; Washington, DC
Rank: Chief Specialist
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Many young women emigrate from small towns to work in the Nation's Capital, but Marie Brand's story has the extra dimension of being set in wartime. From Hepzibah, West Virginia, Marie journeyed to Washington in 1943 after she enlisted in the WAVES. Her new home was the Naval Communications Annex, where she and 4,000 other women worked in three shifts round the clock. There was time off to explore the big city, and Marie took it all in - the monuments, museums, restaurants, and concerts.

Interview (Audio)
»Interview Highlights  (5 clips)
»Complete Interview 
Download: audio (25 min.)
»Photo Album  (7 photos)
 Official Documents
»View List (5 items)
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»Family Ties
»Voices of War
 Audio (Interview Excerpts) (5 items)
Strict training conditions. (00:44) Working conditions at her office in Washington. (01:07) Still unaware of what her work involved. (00:39)
The advantages of being stationed in Washington, D.C. (01:14) On leave in New York and other spots outside the capital. (01:29) 
 Official Documents (5 items)
Commendation Award Notification Letter Office Memo Announcing Advancement in Rate [02/19/44] Thank You Letter from The Secretary Of The Navy [11/21/45]
Job Description and Evaluation Boot School Marching Songs 

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  October 26, 2011
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