James R. Peterson Interview, November 23, 2012


James R. Peterson


Jacob Haber



Download Audio Interview (78.4 MB)

Download Transcript of James Peterson Interview (312 KB)


James R. Peterson describes growing up in Choteau County, Montana, after his parents immigrated to the United States from Sweden. He talks about attending the University of Montana during the beginning of the Vietnam War, and explains how a financial emergency resulted in him being drafted. He talks about being assigned to learn Vietnamese before he was stationed in Di An, Vietnam. Peterson recalls working closely with U.S. and Vietnamese security forces to identify and eliminate the Vietcong. He also mentions being awarded a bronze star for meritorious achievement during his four-month service. Peterson concludes by noting the importance of linguistics to military operations as well as the positive effects that come with learning another language and culture.


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Document Type

Oral History


Vietnam War (1955-1975); Vietcong; Central Intelligence Agency [CIA]; Federal Bureau of Investigation [FBI]; United States Army; Linguistics, military

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage




Original Collection

U.S. Military Veterans Oral History Collection, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library


Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / library.archives@umontana.edu

Oral History Number

OH 439-001

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

1 sound file (00:56:17 min.) digital + 1 transcript (12 p.: 28 cm.)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

00:56:17 minutes

Local Filename

OH_439_001.mp3; OH_439_001.pdf

James R. Peterson Interview, November 23, 2012