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F.W. Beasecker papers

Identifier: RHC-29

Collection Description

These military records and personal papers document the career and personal life of Lt. (later Capt.) F.W. Beasecker, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Military records include diaries, correspondence, orders, blueprints and plans, manuals, and correspondence. Other military records include publications, artifacts and memorabilia. Photographs of training at Camp Edwards, Massachusetts; visit to the Gibbon Boat Works in New Orleans, manufacturer of parts for the LCVP; housing in Carabelle, Florida; and Signal Corps and Engineer Amphibian Command photographs taken in Cairns, Australia. Images taken in Australia include construction of the landing craft boat assembly plant, production and testing of the LCVP and snapshots taken by Beasecker during his active duty with the 411th Engineer Battalion during WWII. Pre and post-war personal records include Beasecker's diplomas, yearbooks, sketches and designs, and correspondence. Also included are photo albums and other materials written and assembled by his wife Helen Starr Beasecker.


  • 1929-1976


Access to Materials

Collection is open for research use. Materials may be accessed by request at Special Collections and University Archives in Seidman House. Materials do not circulate.

Publication Rights

For information on copyright or permissions for this collection, contact Grand Valley State University Special Collections.


F. W. (Francis "Frank" Wallace) Beasecker was born in 1917 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In 1935, he graduated from Birmingham High School in Birmingham, Michigan. In 1936, he married Helen Starr.

Beasecker operated small freighter on Great Lakes for several years beginning in 1937, and was a marine engine specialist for the Chrysler Corporation in Detroit, Michigan from 1941-1942. He joined the Army in August 1942 as a commissioned 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He was assigned to Company A, 411th Engineer Base Shop Battalion, 2nd Brigade, Engineer Amphibious Command, and arrived in Cairns, Australia January 1943. In November 1943 he was promoted to 1st Lieutenant. He served as a production manager for assembly of Landing Craft Vehicle/Personnel (LCVP), and moved with his unit to Port Moresby, New Guinea in 1944.

Due to injury, Beasecker was reassigned to Army Service Forces Training Center at Camp Gordon Johnson, Florida and served as Training Officer from 1944-1946. In March 1946, he was promoted to Captain. During his service, he received a Bronze Star medal, Army Commendation medal, and was recommended for the Legion of Merit. Beasecker's separation from active duty was in May 1946.

After the war, Beasecker was employed at Carolina Bearings, Inc., Greenville, S.C., 1946-1949; Brunswick Marine, Brunswick, Ga., 1949-1951; Orley Brothers, Detroit, Mich., 1951-1953; Lincoln-Mercury Div., Ford Motor Co., 1953-1962; Micro-Measurements, Inc., Romulus, Mich., 1962-1971. He died in 1971.


7.5 Linear feet (2 cartons and 11 boxes)

Language of Materials



Arranged in 2 series: 1) Military records; 2) Personal records

Source of Acquisition

Acquired from Robert Beasecker in 2008

Alternate Format Available

A selection of photographs have been digitized from this collection and are available electronically in our Digital Collection.

F.W. Beasecker papers, RHC-29
Special Collections & University Archives
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Repository Details

Part of the Grand Valley State University Special Collections and University Archives Repository

Seidman House
1 Campus Drive
Allendale MI 49401 United States