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The Peter Pauls Stewart Collection - Life with Elizabeth

Liz Wally

Silent | 1940s

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  •  The whole family, with the father in military uniform 
  •  WWII Army of Embarkation, Transportation Corps shoulder patch 
  •  Dallas, June 1946 
  •  Elizabeth plays in a miniature pool with her mother and father 
  •  Elizabeth celebrates her third birthday  
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This 1940s home movie documents a young Dallas couple spending time with their young daughter, Elizabeth. The movie begins with Elizabeth as a baby, playing and splashing in a wash tub outside. Elizabeth and her mother, Elizabeth May Exall Stewart, then go to a park, play on a swing set, and walk around holding hands together. The footage captures the father, Peter Pauls Stewart, wearing a WWII military uniform, holding and kissing Elizabeth. A small amount of time elapses and Elizabeth is now a toddler, swimming and running with her mother in the backyard. The movie ends with Elizabeth’s third birthday party.
In one scene, Elizabeth’s father wears a WW2 military uniform with a red and yellow shoulder patch. The patch includes a helmsman’s wheel on top of a shield, signifying the Port of Embarkation. Put simply, Port of Embarkation, or POE, is a point from which personnel and cargo leave for a specific route. During WW2, the ports transported men from their training bases to the front. The yellow and red colors of the patch signify that POE was part of the Transportation Corps, which directed the mobilization of military supplies and infantry throughout the war. 
The United States Department of War established the Transportation Corps on July 31, 1942 in order to concentrate transportation control within one division. On the European front, the Transportation Corps employed landing craft and amphibious vehicles across beaches to the ports. The most notable operation remains the D-Day landing in Normandy. On the Pacific Front, the Transportation Corps used small freight ships and harborcraft units to transport the army to each island.