Saturday, August 29, 2009

Old WWII Scrapbook Reveals Squirrel Runner Article

At the beginning of the month of August, I noticed an ad online from a person who was offering up an old WWII scrapbook, free to a good home. It contained newspaper article clippings on soldiers from the Montchanin, Talleyville, and surrounding Wilmington areas. I knew that some of the families who resided at Squirrel Run had migrated to these areas after the Gunpowder Mills were dismantled, and I was pretty sure there would be some articles in the book relating to descendants of those families. I contacted the owner to see if it was still available, and explained why I was interested in having it. The owner replied and asked me for my mailing address, and said she would be happy to see me have it.

The package arrived in the mail this past week, and as I opened it I found a note from the sender of the book. It read, "my grandmother who compiled this scrapbook was Mary Keating of Rockland. Her husband was a millworker at the Doeskin Mill." I was glad to see that the sender of the book (whom we'll simply refer to as "Jody") provided the name of the actual creator of the scrapbook, so that we could credit her accordingly. After reading that note, I began to look at the articles in the scrapbook- right on the first page was a Squirrel Run-related article. The clipping is shown with this posting, and details the death of Sergeant Victor J. Carozzo (click on the article clipping to see the full-size image).

Victor was the son of John Carozzo, and was born on June 25, 1921. He can be seen in the Tutti I Giusvallini picture on the far left, being held by his father, John (for those who have the numbered version of the picture, Victor is #137).

The newspaper clipping does not have the date of death present, however thanks to Frank Rosaio's Rootsweb site (link found in the right column of this site), we know that Victor died on July 17th, 1943. This article was obviously drafted at some point in the following week.

I was happy to find this article in the scrapbook, since it not only provides information on Victor's death, but also includes a photo of him in his young adult life.

A very special thanks goes out to "Jody" and her grandmother for taking the time to compile such a valuable piece of Delaware (and surrounding area) history. In a world where so many are quick to move to a "paperless" environment, treasures like these are becoming more and more scarce.

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