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Russell Annabel papers

Guide to the Russell Annabel papers
1942-1954, 2001

Collection number: HMC-0516.
Creator: Annabel, Russell.
Title: Russell Annabel papers.
Dates: 1942-1954, 2001.
Volume of collection: 0.9 cubic foot.
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Collection summary: Papers of United Press war correspondent in Alaska during World War II.

Biographical note:
Russell “Rusty” Annabel was a United Press war correspondent in Alaska during World War II. He was very familiar with the Alaska, having lived in the territory on and off since the 1920s. Annabel applied for and received his press credentials in 1942 and began his coverage of the war in Alaska soon after. He reported on land based operations, as well as from aboard ship during every major battle of the year-long Aleutian campaign. Annabel filed over 600 reports between August 1942 and the end of 1945. During that time, he traveled the Aleutian chain many times, traveled across the rest of the territory and western Canada in search of stories. He was eventually assigned to the Far East where he followed troops to Okinawa, Japan and China. Annabel continued to live and write in Mexico until his death in 1979.

Collection description:
This collection consists of Russell Annabel’s transcripts of dispatches, annotated dispatches, correspondence, article clippings, and photograph materials. Dispatch transcripts are in chronological order, covering the dates of August 16, 1942 through September 25, 1945. Annabel’s typewritten annotated dispatches date from 1942-1945, a majority of which are in chronological order by year. There is one folder of dispatches about the Castner’s Cutthroats: Alaska Scouts on St. Matthew Island during World War II. The newspaper clippings include articles written by Annabel and articles he collected about World War II, animals, and fishing. Correspondence in the collection date from 1947-1954; some of which are fan mail and correspondence regarding the publication of Head for the Hills, an anthology of Annabel’s works. An outline for the anthology is in the collection as well.  The collection also includes undated handwriten field notes chronicling Annabel’s travels in Alaska. Photographic materials in the collection are color transparencies and black and white photographs depicting his travels in Alaska.

Arrangement: Collection materials retain the order they were in when they arrived at archives.

Digitized copies: This collection has not been digitized. For information about obtaining digital copies, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Digital materials: The digital contents of this collection are not available online. Access may only be provided on-site in the Archives research room. For more information about potential distance access to digital records, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Use restrictions: The transcribed dispatches are not to be published in any form without the donor’s consent, with the exception of quoted excerpts from the material (with proper documentation).

Rights note: The Archives does not own copyright to this collection. Copyright to transcripts of dispatches is owned by Jeff Davis. Other materials in this collections may also be subject to copyright restrictions.

Preferred citation: Russell Annabel papers, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Custodial history: When Russell Annabel left Alaska in 1954, he gave the papers to Cliff Cernick. In 1988, Cliff Cernick and Jeff Davis decided to write a book about Annabel. When Cliff Cernick passed away the papers were transferred to Jeff Davis.

Acquisition note: In 2001 Jeff Davis donated a CD of transcripts of Russell Annabel’s dispatches that he had compiled, organized, and transferred to electronic form. The transcriptions were part of Davis’ ongoing research on Russell Annabel and the Aleutian Campaign. A new addition was donated to the Archives in 2011 by Jeff Davis that contained Russell Annabel’s papers and photographs.

Processing information: This collection was described by Kathleen Hertel-Baker in 2001.  The second addition to the collection was processed by Mariecris Gatlabayan in 2011. A folder-level listing was added to the finding aid by Gwen Higgins in 2021.

Container list:


Box/Folder Description Date
Electronic folder Transcriptions of Russell Annabel’s dispatches by Jeff Davis. Originals dated 1942-1945 2001
1/1 Inroduction and author note for transcriptions of Russell Annabel’s dispatches by Jeff Davis 2001
1/2 “Race for the Aleutians,” chronology of the Aleutian Campaign by Jeff Davis 2001
1/3-11 Transcriptions of United Press dispatches by Jeff Davis. Originals dated 1941 August 16-1945 September 25 2001
1/12 United Press dispatches 1942 June 28- December 31
1/13 United Press dispatches, Attu Island 1942 August 16-December 28
1/14 United Press dispatches, Attu Island 1943 May 12-June 7
1/15 United Press dispatches, Attu Island 1943 May 12-21
1/16 United Press dispatches, Attu Island 1943 May 16-28
1/17 United Press dispatches 1943 May 28-June 9
1/18 United Press dispatches 1943 January 2-December 23
2/1 United Press dispatches 1944 January 2-December 26
2/2 United Press dispatches undated
2/3 United Press dispatches 1945
2/4 Correspondence and clippings 1947-1954
2/5 United Press dispatches on Alaska Scouts 1943-1944
2/6 Newspaper clippings and United Press “Recent Typical Dispatches” booklet 1943-1954
2/7 Receipts and notes undated, 1953-1954
2/8 Correspondence and notes related to Head for the Hills 1947-1954
2/9 Notes, receipts, and correspondence 1953-1954
2/10 Newspaper and magazine clippings 1946-1954
2/11 Alaskan animals subject file 1947-1953
2/12 Outdoor adventure subject file 1948-1954
2/13 Fishing subject file 1944-1952
2/14 Color transparencies undated
2/15 Black and white prints undated, 1950

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