Date of Interview
Martin Steinbach was born 8 August 1919 in Des Moines, Iowa, but his parents moved in 1922 to Loman, Minnesota, and then in 1936 to the International Falls area. His father operated a portable sawmill, and by the time he was fourteen Martin was working full-time to help support the family; he did this until enlisting in the US Army in the fall of 1940. Following Basic Training Martin was sent to Fort Lewis, Washington, where he joined the 41st Field Artillery. With the US entry into the war in December 1941, the 41st Field Artillery was moved to California for further training. At the conclusion of this the unit was shipped east and then overseas to participate in November 1942 in the Allied landings in North Africa. From this point until the end of the European war in May 1945, Martin remained with the 41st Field Artillery; he participated in landings at Sicily (July 1943), Italy (September 1943), Anzio (January 1944), and southern France, at Marseilles (August 1944). From late 1944 to mid-1945 Martin and the 41st Field Artillery were part of the force fighting across eastern France and into Germany. V-E Day (8 May 1945) found Martin in hospital in Metz, France, recovering from a hand wound. After release from hospital in July, Martin served briefly in Germany as part of the Allied occupation force before being rotated back to the United States; he was discharged in September 1945 with the rank of staff sergeant. After military service Martin returned to northern Minnesota and labored briefly in the lumber industry before moving to International Falls, where he worked a number of years in the auto repair business. In the early 1960s Martin began work at Boise Cascade in International Falls, and he remained with the company until he retired in 1984. At the time of this interview (October 2001) Martin Steinbach and his wife lived in rural Koochiching County, Minnesota, several miles south of International Falls. Bronze Star recipient, 1944 Martin provides detailed information on everyday life as an enlisted man.
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Saylor, Thomas, "Oral History Project World War II Years, 1941-1946 - Martin Steinbach" (2001). Oral History Project: World War II Years, 1941-1946. 164.