August 16, 1943 – Merton’s War Diary

August 16, 1943
Dower arrived with supplies and mail. Eskimos from village over mountain around camp all the time.

The Dower must have been another one of the ships and it looks like Cape Dan is at the southern most part of the island.  It is possible that these Eskimo’s are from the village of Kulusk itself.  I am still looking for a weather station there and when I find it you’ll be sure to know.

In 1943 and 1944,  my Grandfather Merton Young traveled to Greenland while working for the Merritt-Chapman & Scott Company.  He wrote a brief diary of his journey and this is a piece of that story.

Next Entry – Aug 18

August 13, 1943 – Merton’s War Diary

August 13, 1943
Started first building on mountain for weather station.

Weather stations on the East Coast of Greenland were very important installations.  This was the day before Doplar and Satellites.  The weather fronts from Greenland would routinely make their way on to Northern Europe and these stations could report and forecast so that the troops stood a better chance on the front.

The weather station Knospe in operation during World War II. (Image: Svalbard Museum)

It seems as if the German’s also had stations on Greenland and there were numerous expeditions to find and secure them.

This fascinating short documentary on ‘The Sledge Patrol’ by Sandra Skibsted can shed more light on the subject and is the tale of Greenland’s first ‘Army’

If you are at all interested in the current weather in Kulusuk Greenland, follow this [Link] to The Weather Underground.  This year on August 13 it was a balmy 47 °F (8 °C).

In 1943 and 1944,  my Grandfather Merton Young traveled to Greenland while working for the Merritt-Chapman & Scott Company. He wrote a brief diary of his journey and this is a piece of that story.

Next Entry – Aug 16, 1943

Aug 10, 1943 – Merton’s War Diary

Aug 10, 1943
Arrived at Cape Dan (Kulusuk) and started unloading ship. – Saw Eskimos turn over their kayaks while in them and then upright them again, also tip over accidentally and nearly drown. Trading with Eskimos and working 14 and 16 hours a day.

Cape Dan!  What a great name!

Kulusuk Winter – By Algkalv (Own work) [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

The other thing I would like to leave you with is this video of Greenland Kayak Rolls by YouTube user Andrew Elizaga.  If you scrub through the video, you will see some of the various techniques which Merton most likely saw.  It even looks like they mounted a go-pro to go under the water on a few of the rolls.

I have to say – that looked extremely cold… but I think I’d be up for trying it someday…  perhaps someplace warmer though.

In 1943 and 1944,  my Grandfather Merton Young traveled to Greenland while working for the Merritt-Chapman & Scott Company. He wrote a brief diary of his journey and this is a piece of that story.

Next entry – Aug 13

Do-Over Update

Well it is the start of week 6 I believe and I am begining to fall behind.

But that’s Ok in my book.

Since the last update I was able to complete a family interview with my mother. The experience was great and I learned a lot of little things, mostly about the history of Atlantic City.

I have since spent some time listening to the interview and pulling out the details into a spreadsheet.

One of those details was the story of a small plane crash my father was in shortly before he and mom met.

image

My Father was lucky enough to survive this with only a broken finger.

I used this story to research what I could about the incident. I searched many newspapers of the area based on the date my mother had thought. I had a break through when I found the NTSB accident record [link] with the date almost a year later. I was able to find this using the tail number of the aircraft.

I now need to search more newspapers with the new date as a major item is different between my mothers account of the story and the accident report. The Co-Pilot of the plane had died. I have kept a fairly accurate search log thus far along with a list of sources.

There is still a ton of work to do on the interview but to break things up I also began re-translating some of the Hungarian family records of my Mothers Father. Again keeping notes in the log and creating the sources as I go.

As of yet, I have not entered a single name into the software but like I said before. That’s Ok.

Week 5 was about creating a toolbox and I have been doing that all along. I have syarted to compile some of it here on the DYPast Blog [Link] and I will continue as I go.

Onto reading about this new do-over week in a short while but first, 10 more minutes of the Interview.

To find out more about Thomas MacEntee’s Geneabloggers Do-Over Project, follow this [Link].

August 5, 1943 – Merton’s War Diary

August 5, 1943

Arrived at #2, met Capt. Shriffin who was stationed in Hyannis for long time.

Bluie East Two was a minor United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) airfield at Ikateq, East Greenland. It was operational from 1942 to 1947. ¹

I would be curious to find out who Capt Shriffin is.  Did Merton know him ahead of time or was the simple fact they were both in Hyannis the common denominator.  When researching Merton’s history on the cape, be it newspapers or other items, I will keep a look out for the Captain.

In 1943 and 1944,  my Grandfather Merton Young traveled to Greenland while working for the Merritt-Chapman & Scott Company. He wrote a brief diary of his journey and this is a piece of that story.

Next entry – Aug 10 ²

¹ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bluie_East_Two

² Note – I will catch up soon – I promise

Aug 3, 1943 – Merton’s War Diary

Aug 3, 1943
Worked cutting a new door opening into radio officers room on the Iris.

Just the journal entry for today I’m afraid. I will leave you pondering as I am, how thick are the interior walls of a ship?

In 1943 and 1944,  my Grandfather Merton Young traveled to Greenland while working for the Merritt-Chapman & Scott Company.  He wrote a brief diary of his journey and this is a piece of that story.

Next entry – Aug 5