Spring 2011 Internship Class Podcasts: African American History in Gainesville, World War II, the Vietnam War, Growing up in Nazi Germany

Spring 2011 interns produced podcasts on a variety of topics. Featured image from “German Boy: A Child in War” by Wolfgang E. Samuel, a memoir of life growing up in Nazi Germany.

University of Florida Digital Collections Archive

To date, 50+ oral history podcasts are available on the University of Florida’s Digital Collections website, including final projects for the entire Spring 2011, 2013, Fall 2013, and Spring 2014 intern classes, as well as the Summer 2013 seminar and original SPOHP podcast series, released in 2009. Browse the following highlights for more information, and visit the UFDC to download the many available series.

To access information about individual podcasts, scroll through the UFDC collection. Podcasts below are from the Spring 2011 internship class. All podcasts are 15 minutes or less to facilitate easy access to local history for students, teachers, and the general public.

George Sternfels: World War II Veteran & Wine Connoisseur (created by Melissa Sheldon) 13:50

World War II veteran George Sternfels briefly describes being drafted, his participation in the D-Day invasion, and the subsequent injuries he suffered therein. He speaks at greatest length about his reassignment to the Parisian suburb of Saint Cloud, where he ran an apartment hotel for field officers on rest and recuperation leaves, before moving on to descriptions of his reassignment to Frankfurt, a trip to Stuttgart for contact lenses he would never get, his dating and married lives back in America, and his time teaching wine classes at Santa Fe College.

Richard Hudgens: Reluctant Vietnam Veteran (created by Max Gelber) 9:31

Vietnam veteran Richard Hudgens describes the various mindsets of young men facing the Vietnam War draft in the 1960s before elaborating on his own experience with the draft. He discusses willing enlistees who believed the war was just, willing enlistees who joined in order to avoid being drafted into more dangerous military work, those who believed in the war but did not want to fight it themselves (“Chickenhawks”), draft resistors and anti-war protestors, and reluctant draftees. He describes his disapproval of the war, a disappointing three day stint with the anti-war movement in Toronto, and his experience being drafted “under threat of jail.”

Andrew Mickle: Gainesville Educator (created by Ronald LaFrance) 5:58

Andrew Mickle describes his experiences as a teacher at all-black Lincoln High School before it was closed due to integration, as well as his feelings toward integration more generally. He goes on to describe the vocational training center Santa Fe College opened in its place and the effects it had on Gainesville.

Dr. Gerhard Freund: World War II, The Sun Kept Rising (created by Amy Rubin) 27:37

Dr. Gerhard Fruend recounts his experiences before, during, and after World War II in Nazi Germany. As a child, he witnessed political street brawls between Nazis and Communists, marched with the Hitler Youth, and saw his father for the last time while training to become an anti-aircraft helper at the age of sixteen. He later volunteered for the Air Force, in which he became an electronics technician, ran into trouble for failing to salute an officer, and was eventually captured by Allied Forces after escaping a collapsing Eastern Front. He describes his time as a prisoner of war in both American and British prison camps, as well as his eventual discharge and return home. After his return to civilian life, Dr. Freund attended medical school in Frankfurt, got a Master’s Degree in Applied Chemistry in Montreal, and eventually settled as a professor at the University of Florida, where he researched alcohol addiction in animals.

Wunhild Ryschkewitsch: World War II, Growing up in Germany (created by Christian Klepper) 9:51

Wunhild Ryschkewitsch describes her childhood in Nazi Germany and her time as a volunteer in the Sudetenland, including the impending arrival of Russian troops and the abandonment of her group of volunteers by its German army escort, her decision to travel via train back to her home town, and her eventual homecoming. Upon her arrival home, she learned that both her father and her sixteen-year-old brother had been drafted.

For more information about the podcast series, University of Florida Digital Collections, and more, please contact the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program .

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