- The Tartière family papers consist of correspondence, photographs, printed materials, relief agency records, and business records documenting Gladys and Raymond Tartière of Middleburg, VA; Hugh Byfield’s service in World War II with the 1269th Engineers C Brigade and visit to Dachau concentration camp after liberation; Jacques Tartière’s acting career in Paris before the war and service with the Coldstream Guards, French Foreign Legion, and Free French Forces during the war; Drue Leyton’s work with the French resistance; and Gladys Tartière’s work following the war with American Aid to France, Inc., providing food to French children. The collection also includes some of Raymond Tartière’s Paris business records from 1920 and 1921.
American Aid to France, Inc., records consist of correspondence, reports, forms, brochures, descriptions, mailing labels, and photographs of French children documenting Gladys Tartière’s work for a relief organization providing food to French children after the war.
Correspondence files primarily consist of letters and telegrams exchanged among Jacques, Drue, and Raymond Tartière describing Jacques’ illnesses, prewar acting career, and wartime assignments and Drue’s wartime radio broadcasts and evacuation from Paris. Additional correspondence documents the Tartière family’s efforts to trace Jacques, medals awarded to him, and his death. The series also includes two letters from Hugh Byfield to his mother, including one written on Adolf Hitler’s Munich letterhead, describing his work with the 1269th Engineers C Brigade.
Photographic materials primarily consist of a set of captioned photographs by Hugh Byfield titled “Dachau was the Flowers near the Entrance: An Experience of World War II” that document his World War II service. The photographs follow his unit’s progress through Nice, Beaulieu, Roquebillière, Mannheim, Karlsruhe, Würzburg, Heilbronn, Vaihingen, Haigerlock, Bisingen, Hechingen, Donauwörth, Munich, Augsburg, and Dachau. The captions describe Byfield’s experiences and provide commentary and reflection that is particularly strong for the Dachau concentration camp photographs. The captioned photographs are accompanied by a psychological warfare leaflet aimed at American desertion or surrender and three postcards Byfield wrote home to his mother in April and May 1945. This series also includes a photograph of an unidentified man on horseback and a photograph of a performance onboard a troop ship, both of which appear to be related to Jacques Tartière.
Printed materials include clippings about Jacques and Drue (Leyton) Tartière, their acting careers, and her French resistance work; a 1944 directory of recipients of the Ordre de la Libération; and a copy of the V-E Day issue of SHAEF’s newspaper.
Société Française des Auto-Mails files include business records and correspondence documenting Raymond Tartière’s business in Paris in 1920 and 1921.
- Collection Creator
- Tartière family
Gladys Tartière (1892-1993, nee Rosenthal) was married to Raymond Tartière (1881-1950), a French banker born in Lyon, and the couple lived in Middleburg, VA. She had a son, Hugh Byfield (1922-1984), from her previous marriage. Byfield served in France and Germany during World War II with the 1269th Engineers Combat Battalion. Raymond Tartière’s son from a previous marriage, Jacques Tartière (1915-1941), was an actor (screen name Jacques Terrane) in Paris and was married to American actress Drue (Dorothy) Leyton (1903-1997). At the outbreak of war, he was rejected from the French army for health reasons and instead became a liaison officer first with the British Coldstream Guards in France and then with the Foreign Legion in Norway. He then joined de Gaulle’s Free French Forces and served in Gabon, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Syria and was shot in the back and killed by a war prisoner in Damascus in 1941. Drue Leyton Tartière joined the French resistance following his death. After the war, Gladys Tartière worked with American Aid to France, Inc. to provide food for needy French children.