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Boggs, Aileen Frazier

Document Type

Oral History

Date of Interview



Aileen Frazier Boggs was born on 15 June 1918 in Des Moines, Iowa. She attended local schools, graduating from Des Moines East High in 1936, and then spent several years doing housework and childcare in private homes; Aileen also worked some months as a clerk at a local Woolworth’s. In 1939 Aileen married Mel Boggs; the couple purchased their first house in 1941, and welcomed their first child in 1942. In early 1943, concerned that he might be drafted, Mel instead volunteered for the US Army Air Corps; he spent the time until late 1945 in service, more than a year of this overseas as pilot of a B-24 Liberator bomber. For Aileen, the period 1943-45 was a period of adjustment: to being a single mother managing a household. She dealt on a daily basis with rationing, shortages, childcare, and worrying about her husband on active duty in a war zone. In 1944 Aileen invited a friend of hers, another Air Corps wife, to move into the house; both women benefited from sharing experiences of husbands overseas, and gained moral support. “It meant a lot to me,” Aileen said. Following Mel’s discharge from active duty in late 1945, Aileen was a stay at home mother until the early 1960s, when she worked at several secretarial jobs. After 1968 she helped manage a plumbing contracting business that Mel started, retiring in 1995. At the time of this interview (2002) Aileen and Mel Boggs lived in Woodbury, Minnesota


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Aileen Boggs - Transcript.pdf (528 kB)
PDF Transcript of Interview with Aileen Boggs