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Milner, Samuel (1910-2000) | University of Houston Libraries

Name: Milner, Samuel (1910-2000)

Historical Note:

Samuel Milner was born on April 30, 1910. He earned a graduate degree in history from the University of Alberta, and completed further graduate work in political science at the University of Minnesota. During World War II, he served in Australia and New Guinea as a historian with the Air Transport Command, Army Air Forces. As a historian for the Office of the Chief of Military History, Department of the Army, he wrote the book Victory in Papua, which was published in 1957. Following its publication, he became historian of the Air Weather Service, U.S. Air Force.

While at the Office of the Chief of Military History, Department of the Army, Milner began writing another book about World War II, this one focused on the USS Houston (CA-30) and the 2nd Battalion, 131st Field Artillery (Texas National Guard). Crew members who survived the sinking of the Houston and members of the National Guard unit who were stationed on Java were both captured by the Japanese in early 1942. The men developed a strong bond as they spent the next three and one half years together as prisoners of war. The National Guard unit came to be known as “the Lost Battalion.”

Milner interviewed survivors, gathered research materials, and wrote opening chapters for his book, which was to be titled The Undefeated, but he never completed the project. Milner died on March 12, 2000.

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