Corinne Hosfeld Smith

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Presentation / Discussion:  

Reconstructing History & Genealogy: Mom's WWII Letters

Corinne's discovery of more than 100 letters brought unexpected insights and connections.

In May 2017, she found her mother's stash of letters from 16 servicemen that she had corresponded with in 1944-1945. Most of the men were from her mother's hometown of Allentown, Pennsylvania, or from her college roommate's hometown of Trenton, New Jersey. Nearly all of the writers were now gone and could no longer offer information or explanations for what they had written. Corinne began to trace the soldiers' family trees with one goal in mind: to return the letters in person to their children. Learn about her on-going project, and hear some of the stories of the men, their experiences, and what their relatives have to say today. This presentation links history and genealogy to present-day research and diligence. It revisits a time that we may not want to forget. And it may prompt audience members to wonder for themselves what treasures may be lurking in their own old family boxes -- and how they can share the information with others.

This is a 90-minute talk with computer slides. Based on the blog, Mom's WWII Letters.

"On February 15, 2018, The Friends of the Sharon Public Library sponsored a wonderful program which was hosted by the Sharon Public Library Veteran's Club. Author Corinne H. Smith presented a program on WWII Letters. Her presentation provided a fascinating look into the lives of soldiers and their families while they were stationed overseas. The research and outcomes were astounding and the audience was able to relate through their own experiences. We are grateful to Corinne for sharing this incredible story." ~ Lee Ann Amend and Ed Amend, Sharon, Massachusetts


Reconstructing History & Genealogy: Mom's WWII Letters, Corinne's presentation, Dover Free Library, Dover, Vermont, August 24, 2018. Recorded by Brattleboro TV.

The Jerry Caruso Comedy Hour, Orange, Massachusetts, June 14, 2018. Recorded by AOTV. Corinne talks with Jerry about the letters and her programs.


"Corinne H. Smith, Mom's WWII Letters." Interview with Travis of the K-Zone, WPKZ radio, Fitchburg, Massachusetts, April 5, 2019.


"Smith educates the community on genealogy through letters." By Carling Willis, The Reminder (West Springfield, Massachusetts), May 7, 2019.

"Writer Connects History and Genealogy," by Chris Mays, Brattleboro Reformer (Vermont), July 27, 2018.

"Woman Finds Trove of WWII V-Mail from Allentown Soldiers," by Christina Tatu, The Morning Call (Allentown, Penna.), June 27, 2017.


Some of Mom's WWII letters, found in an old family box.

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