2 Replies Latest reply on Mar 16, 2021 9:29 PM by James Fay

    Was Melvin Lord associated with the Office of Strategic Services?

    James Fay Newbie

      Was someone named Melvin Lord associated with the Office of Strategic Services during the 1940s? Time frame: 1930s-'40s. Locations: U.S., Spain, France. I am looking for background information regarding an individual named Melvin Lord, particularly connections with the O.S.S. I'm also seeking info about any connection he might have had with the following persons: José Quinta, Pere/Pedro Pla, Josep/José Pla, and David A. Sanderson—and/or connections these person had with each other. In addition, there may be some connections between these persons, Melvin Lord, and an American company called Armstrong Cork.

        • Re: Was Melvin Lord associated with the Office of Strategic Services?
          Rachael Salyer Scout

          Dear Mr. Fay,

           

          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

           

          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Personnel Files of the Office of Strategic Services, 1942 - ca. 1962 in the Record of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) (Record Group 226) that includes one file for Lord, Melvin S., 1st LT - [Serial Number] 0364033 in box 462. We were unable to locate a file for David A. Sanderson, José Quinta, or anyone with the family name of Pla in the series. These records have not been digitized. Please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) for access to and information about these records.

           

          Next, we searched the Personal Name Index to the OSS records, and we located one file for Lord, Melvin S. in box 22, folder 261 of the series Washington Office Operations and Service Records, 1942-1946 in Records Group 226. There were no entries for David A. Sanderson, José Quinta, or anyone with the family name of Pla in this index. We also searched the Topical Index to the OSS records, but we were unable to locate any entry for Armstrong Cork in that index. These records have not been digitized. You may contact RDT2 for assistance with these records.

           

          We also searched the Index to the Official Record Documents, 1941 - 1945 in Record Group 226, microfilmed as “Records of the Office of the Director, OSS” (M1642), and located one entry for Lord, Lt. Melvin dated 6/5/42 on roll 67, frames 22-24 (from Buxton to Sumner). There were no entries for Sanderson, Quinta, Pla, or Armstrong Cork. These records have not been digitized. Please contact RDT2 for more information about these records.

           

          Further, we located the series Sources and Methods Files, 1941-2002 in Record Group 226 that  contains the file Volume 1 - "War Report: Office of Strategic Services: Washington Organization" which includes a reference to Armstrong Cork on page 339 of the PDF of the document that has been digitized and is available online via the Catalog. You may contact RDT2 with any questions you might have about these or similar records. You may use the Advanced Search feature of the Catalog to search within a record group (e.g. 226 for OSS records) that might be relevant to your research or review the NARA website on OSS Records.

           

          In addition, we located the series Office Files of P.S. Greer, 1947-1950 in the Records of the Reconstruction Finance Agency (Record Group 234) that contains some information related to the Armstrong Cork Company. We also located the series Seized General Files of Okura and Company Papers Dealing with Exports, 1942-1949? In the Records of the Office of Alien Property (Record Group 131) that includes some records related to Armstrong Cork, too. These records have not been digitized. You may contact RDT2 for access to and information about them.

           

          We also located the series Name and Subject Index to General Correspondence, 2/1/1930-6/1/1942 (Microfilm Publication M1067) in the General Records of the Department of the Navy (Record Group 80) that includes 15 references to Armstrong Cork. These records have been digitized and may be viewed online via the Catalog. They serve as an index to the series General Correspondence, 1940-1942 in Record Group 80, which has not been digitized. Please contact RDT2 with any questions you might have about these records.

           

          Plus, we located the series Dispute Case Files, 1942-1945 in the Records of the National War Labor Board (World War II) (Record Group 202) that contains 17 files related to Armstrong Cork and the series Voluntary Wage and Salary Adjustment Case Files, 1945-1946 in Record Group 202 that contains 11 files related to Armstrong Cork that may be of interest to you. These records have not been digitized. Please contact the National Archives at Philadelphia (RE-PA) at philadelphia.archives@nara.gov for assistance with these records.

           

          Finally, if you have not done so already, we suggest that you request a copy of Melvin Lord’s Official Military Personnel File (OMPF). OMPFs and individual medical reports for those who served in the U.S. Armed Forces and who were separated from the service before 1959 are in the custody of NARA's National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St. Louis. In many cases where Army and Army Air Corps personnel records were destroyed in the 1973 fire, proof of service can be provided from other records such as morning reports, payrolls, and military orders, and a certificate of military service will be issued. Navy and Marine Corps OMPFs were not affected by the fire. Please complete a GSA Standard Form 180 and mail it to NARA's National Personnel Records Center, (Military Personnel Records), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO  63138-1002. For more information see Official Military Personnel Files (OMPF), Archival Records Requests.

           

          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2 and RE-PA. Also, the NPRC is closed except for emergencies. Currently, NPRC will continue servicing requests ONLY associated with medical treatments, burials, and homeless veterans seeking admittance to a homeless shelter. If your request is urgent, please see Emergency Requests and Deadlines. Please refrain from submitting non-emergency requests such as replacement medals, administrative corrections, or records research until NPRC returns to pre-COVID staffing levels. Please check archives.gov/veterans for updates to the NPRC operating hours and status. We apologize for any inconvenience.

           

          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

           

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