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SDPB Homefront Stories

Clarice A Weiss, 2007

  • Civilian on the home front during WWII; Spouse of ex-POW, Glen Weiss

Listen to the following sections by scrolling forward to the timecode.

1:14 - Was gopher hunting at age of 19 when she heard about Pearl Harbor
1:42 - Reaction to Pearl Harbor
3:26 - Brother was injured in war
4:23 - Invasion
4:40 - Life changed back home
6:04 - Had to be a teacher
6:52 - Memories of rationing
8:17 - Young men/boys working like men at home
9:07 - Story of the nation being patriotic at the time of the war
10:28 - Husband was in the military 11/1943
12:46 - Emotions during that time
13:27 - Husband POW
17:25 - Remembering the atomic bomb

This story was recorded at an SDPB event in Sioux Falls, SD. 

Images Provided by Clarice A Weiss

Glen and Clarice Weiss, 1943

Wilson Group, Crew #28 (Glen A. Weiss pictured lower right)

Glen A. Weiss, WWII

Postcard  on January 20th, 1944

Postcard from WWII POW Glen A. Weiss

Telegram, Lt. Glen A. Weiss has been reported missing in action.

Telegram, Unofficial shortwave broadcast from Germany which indicated that Glen A. Weiss was a POW.

The Stars and Stripes, Wednesday, March 22, 1944; 'Name, Rank, Serial Number' . Nazis Interrogate Captured U.S. Fliers (Right photo, Glen A. Weiss is pictured third from right; Article provided by Clarice A. Weiss) 


Kay is pictured wearing a fur coat that her husband, Glen, arranged for her sister to buy Kay for Christmas 1943 before he went overseas. She's standing with the turkeys she raised to earn a little money and to keep herself occupied while she waited and prayed for her husband to come home. Glen, a bombardier, was shot down over Germany on Jan. 11, 1944, and by the time this photo was taken, Kay knew he was alive in a prison camp.


This photo was taken at the site where Kay lived with her sister during the harsh winter and thaw of 1944 (late January through April).

They stayed in a tiny room on one side of a lean-to structure attached across the front of my mother's one-room country school. The front door of the schoolhouse opened into a short hall that led into the classroom. A room for coal was located off the hall to the right. The teacherage (room for the teacher to stay at the school) was left. The room was so small my mother could almost spread her arms and touch opposite walls at once. The room had a fold-out cot (full size), a small table and chair, a shelf, and a washstand. Also, it had a stove she could use for warmth or cooking. In the winter of 1944, while roads were impassable (for large distances), my aunt (Kay Weiss), who taught at another one-room school 4 miles north, would spend weekends in the teacherage with my mother, arriving on horseback.  It was a memorable winter for the two sisters.


The Swenson Ranch as it looks today (2007). It is located near Opal, SD which is 40 miles SW of Faith, SD in Western SD.

She's holding a tiny bouquet of wildflowers that now magically grow and mark the old trail she and her sister traveled in their parents' 1936 Chevy. The trail was the route used to get to this school site, and to go beyond to the Opal, SD store and post office, and further along to Kay's school. When the blizzards came, they used this trail to stay in touch with one another and neighbors via horseback and on foot.

Clarice A. Weiss is pictured with her family.

For more information about SDPB's educational resources 
and services contact Steven Rokusek at or at (605) 222-3422

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