Pulitzer Prize Winner Journalist and WWII Correspondent
The item is a U.S. Army Dispatch Bag, made under the American Leather Products Corporation’s wartime contract, dated 1942. The light green canvas bag has three compartments for maps and other needed articles, along with the pen and pencil loops directly under the flap which is held down with the use of two “lift the dot” snaps. The original canvas adjustable shoulder strap is attached.
The great thing about the bag is its history in WWII being used by one of the most respected journalist and correspondents of both the European and Pacific Theaters of Operation. The bag has stenciled on the front flap “PRESS” over the “U.S.” and on the reverse, “HAL BOYLE.” Also marked to a unit “HQ-172.”
The contents of the bag are minimal, but as found in a old and established WWII Collection. Under the flap are various pencils, a small pocket knife marked “TIC-JAPAN,” and a “CURVE FIT”razor with could have been used for several purposes. In the compartments I found a French made map of Metropolitan Paris, distributed by OCE, ETOUSA, and dated 1/45 on the margin. Also a fountain pen without cover, an Easter card from friends in the States, dated 1942, and an empty box of safety matches “RADJA HINDOSTAN, MADE IN SWEDEN.” The collector had no story for the contents and remembered buying the bag some time ago at a military show from another deal.
Condition overall is very good, showing use. the stencils are showing all the proper wear of being in the elements for a long time.
Harold Vincent “Hal” Boyle was born on July 24, 1911 and passed away on April 1, 1974. He was a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist for the Associated Press, with his best work coming on the front lines with the troops during WWII in the European and Pacific theaters. His column was printed in over 700 newspapers.
Hal Boyle won the Pulitzer Prize on May 7, 1945 for “Distinguished correspondence from the war during 1944. He was with the army during the invasion of North Africa, Sicily and Italy, then on to northern Europe and going ashore at D-Day and covering the war all the way to Berlin. He was referred to the Poor man’s Ernie Pyle; both of which were great friends. Boyle played himself in the 1945 war film written by Pyle,” The Story of G.I.Joe.”
He continued to cover war during the Korean conflict, and in 1951 the VFW gave him the Omar Bradley Award, for the most distinguished contribution to national security concerning his writings during that war.
Hal Boyle died died of a heart attack in New York City in 1974, and he was buried in his hometown of Kansas City.
Boyle was known to go closer to the front than most correspondents were willing to, and this bag was no doubt with him while with the G.I.s at the front in WWII.
A fabulous piece of US and World history!
USPS First Class Mail $18.00