Ralph A. Busco's Research on
German and Italian POWs in Utah and Idaho, (1960s)
COLL MSS 134
Between 1965 and 1967 Ralph Busco conducted research for a MA thesis in History at Utah State University on the topic of World War II German and Italian prisoners of war (POWs) who were detained at POW camps set up in Utah and Idaho during and after the war. Part of Busco’s thesis research lead him to write letters and send questionnaires to many of the former German and Italian prisoners of the Utah and Idaho camps. From the returned written responses and survey results, Busco formed a thesis entitled, “A History of the German and Italian Prisoner of War Camps in Utah and Idaho during World War II.” Busco’s thesis was completed in 1967 (available at USU Special Collections & Archives) and a condensed version of his research was later published in the Utah Historical Quarterly in 1971 (Vol. 39, No. 1).
The material in this collection was donated to USU Special Collection & Archives by Doug Alder (one of Busco’s thesis advisers) in 1987.
Scope & Content Note:
This collection contains the research papers that Ralph Busco’s used to formulate his 1967 thesis. The material in this collection consists of a list of POWs names and addresses, Busco’s questionnaires, returned questionnaires, correspondence, and drafts of his writings about these POWs. Some of the questionnaires were returned with photographs and detailed letters describing life in the camps. Researchers should be aware that some of the material in this collection is written in German.
The photographs originally contained in this collection have been removed and transferred to USU Special Collection & Archives’ Photograph Division. Those interested in viewing the photographs should inquire with the USU Special Collection & Archives photograph curator.
Box 1: Busco’s Research Papers.
Fd 1: Lists of addresses of former German POWs.
Fd 2: Copies of the letter and questionnaire that was sent and the tallied results.
Fd 3: Letters that were returned because of incorrect addresses.
Fd 4: Letters that were returned because apparently the German cities were then located in Poland.
Fd 5: Questionnaires that were answered by POWs, some have written comments.
Fd 6: Questionnaires that were answered by POWs and these writers sent pictures and wrote comments.
Fd 7: Beginning notes of the article that was later published in the Utah Historical Quarterly in 1971.
Fd 8: Rough drafts of Busco’s article “German & Italian Prisoners of War in Utah & Idaho.”
Fd 9: Additional rough drafts of the article, pages from Busco’s thesis, and two maps showing the camps in Utah and Idaho.
Fd 10: Notes, letters with general information, and a POW information card and envelope.