O'Brien County

Robert Merriam



Our Neighbors in the Services.

Sheldon, Iowa – Robert Merriam, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Merriam of Sheldon, is a prisoner of the Japanese in Manila, according to word received by his parents. He was a photo-telephone employe of the Erlinger-Gallagher Co. in Manilla at the time of the Japanese attack. Mrs. Merriam and their daughter are also prisoners. Robert graduated from Sheldon high school in 1926 and later served in the Navy as a radio man.

Source: The Sioux City Journal, April 11, 1943

Sheldon Couple Tell of Life in Jap Prison Camp

Sheldon Mail:  A radio message by short wave was heard last week from Robert Merriam, a former Sheldon resident, who with his wife and daughter are interned at Tokio in Japan.

The message was received and transcribed by the official listening post of the American Women’s Volunteer Service, Pasadena, Calif., and was mailed by that post to Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Merriam, at Sheldon, parents of Robert.

The message was as follows:
Radio Tokio
June 29, 1943
From Robert Merriam To Mrs. J. A. Merriam:
Dear Mother and Dad: Just a line to let you know that we are all OK after eleven months of internment. Naida and I are camped with 3000 other British, Dutch and Americans.  Audrey was with us until Sept. 15th and then we sent her to Holy Ghost Convent about six blocks from here.  She is with about 150 other internees children.  They continue with their regular studies, have a well supervised diet in general, and live in normal boarding school routine.  Parents visit every second Sunday. She has gained weight since going there and is quite content and busy.  Please drop a line to Ivan Fultenhower, Andrew Freedmanhall, Bronx, N.Y., telling them Naida is O.K.
From, Naida, Bob and Audrey

The Merriams also received word of the short wave broadcast, from listening stations in Sacramento, Petaluma, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Source: LeMars Globe-Post, Monday, July 12, 1943