Famous Hoosiers: Ernie Pyle

*Post written by James Wethington, library assistant of the University Archives and Special Collections.

War correspondences has changed in the 20th Century with recent changes in technology; however, in the early 20th Century, some war correspondents gained recognition for their stories. One example is fellow Hoosier, Ernie Pyle. Born on August 3, 1900 near Dana, Indiana, located north of Terre Haute, Indiana. He attended Indiana University studying journalism; however, he left to serve as a local reporter until he received a job with Scripps-Howard.

This is a photograph of Ernie Pyle in 1944. This photograph is located on the Ernie Pyle page from Britannica.com; however, it is from the United States Army.

Head shot of Ernie Pyle, 1944. Credit: Britannica.com

Pyle became an American war correspondent during World War 2 in numerous locations such as “… North Africa [and his reporting in] Sicily, Italy, and France brought him a Pulitzer Prize for reporting in 1944” (The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica, n.d.). He eventually reported on the American forces in the Pacific Theater of World War 2, proving to be too much. Reporting during the Okinawa campaign, Pyle was fatally shot by Japanese forces on April 18, 1945.

Back in Dana, the non-profit organization, Friends of Ernie Pyle, restored his childhood home and serves as a museum. In 1976, it was “… dedicated as an Indiana state historic site”; moreover, in 1995, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources operated the museum until 2010. Ownership of the museum returned to the Friends of Ernie Pyle in 2011. For more information, view the Ernie Pyle World War 2 Museum for more information on tours, admission costs, and much more (Ernie Pyle World War 2 museum, n.d.).

Ernie Pyle Fighting Hearts The latest reports from the front by America’s most beloved correspondent, selected from his new bestseller, Brave Men and illustrated with fighting-front photos. Graphic Enterprises 17 East 42nd Street, New York 17, N.Y. Image of Ernie Pyle sitting on a chair and a desk in front of him. This edition, based upon the author’s two volumes “Brave Men” and Here is Your War,” is printed with the permission of their publisher, Henry Holt and Company. Both volumes may be obtained from the original publisher in permanent bound from or from any bookstore. “Brave Men” is the December 1944, selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club. Copyright 1942, 1943, 1944, by Script Howard Newspaper Alliance. Copyright 1943, 1944, by Henry Holt and Company, Inc. This illustrated magazine excerpt edition. Copyright 1944, by Graphic Enterprises. The following list shows, page by page, the source from which each picture was obtained. (Abbreviations: AN – Acme Newspictures, Inc.: IN – International News Photos: KV – Keystone View Company: PA – Press Association, Inc.) Front Cover—AN, KV; 1—AN; 3, 4, 6, 7—PA; 9, 11—IN; 12—PA; 13—IN; 14, 15, 17—PA; 18—KV; 20, 21—AN; 22—KV; 24—IN; 25—PA; 27—AN; 28—KV; 29—AN; 30—PA; 31—NA; 32—KY; 35—IN; 37, 39—AN; 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46—IN; 47—PA. I heard of a high British officer who went over the battlefield just after the action was over. American boys were still lying dead in their foxholes, their rifles still grasped in firing position in their dead hands. And the veteran English soldier remarked time and again, in a sort of hushed eulogy spoken only to himself, “Brave men. Brave men!” (HERE IS YOUR WAR)

Front Cover of Fighting Hearts, 1942. Credit: University Archives and Special Collections

His newsletter, Fighting Hearts, is available upon request for viewing during normal business hours at the University Archives and Special Collections.

References

The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. (n.d.). Ernie Pyle. Retrieved June 6, 2017, from https://www.britannica.com/biography/Clara-Barton

Ernie Pyle World War 2 museum (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.erniepyle.org/

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