Central New York Research. The eclectic ramblings of doing genealogy and growing up in that part of Upstate New York that is the central and Finger Lakes regions. With ancestors all over the northeast and beyond, there will be forays outside the area with trips and news on family history as well as local history.
Today I came across a short article from Yankee Magazine
that talked about the Quonset huts that were developed during WWII. They’re a
cylindrical metal building that you see around occasionally in industrial areas
or even sometimes as homes. There’s one such a street away from where my mother
Quonset Huts in Daviesville, Rhode Island
Named after the place in Rhode Island where they were first built,
I always think of the Navy’s Construction Battalion, better known as the Seabees
which formed during this time period, when I see one. This unit of the military
was the only one that accepted “old men” at that time into their ranks. To
quote Kenneth Wooster’s writings:
August 1942, he also joined the service. Too old, at 46, to be accepted by any
other branch, he joined the US Navy Seabees. He spent time in(Port of Spain) Trinidad, Hawaii and the Philippines,
arriving home a few days before the end of the war in the Pacific.”
that Kenneth is referring to is his father, my grandfather, Marion Wooster.
Already a veteran of the First World War he was a carpenter and spent the war
years building roads and I’m sure many of the Quonset huts in these places. At
one point he was stationed at the Navy base in Rhode Island when my grandmother
got to visit him.
Marion in November 1942 Skaneateles, NY
years ago while doing some genealogy research in Rhode Island I discovered that
the base has a museum to the Seabees and was privileged to visit there. It isn’t
much of a museum and was obviously struggling to keep open, but there was
something special about walking around there and knowing that my grandfather
had likely tread the exact same ground I was.