Korean War Legacy Project

Pell E. Johnson


Pell E. Johnson grew up in St. Peter, Minnesota.  Before enlisting in the army with his cousin, he studied Architecture at University of Minnesota.  He was not doing well in school and he knew that his draft notice was soon approaching; that is why he decided to enlist.  From Minnesota, he did his basic training at Fort Riley, Kansas.  He arrived to Seoul, South Korea in 1951.  His duties were with the communication department.  Pell E. Johnson had many responsibilities in the communications department, guarding the post at Old Baldy against Chinese aggression, and monitoring various prisoner of war camps.  After returning home from the Korean War, Pell E. Johnson’s whole outlook on life changed.

Video Clips

Protecting the Front Lines at Old Baldy

Pell E. Johnson understood the importance of protecting the battle lines at Old Baldy. It was difficult to drive the Chinese out of the area. He won't ever forget changing the troops out and celebrating Thanksgiving on a cold night.

Tags: 1952 Battle of Old Baldy, 6/26-8/4,Yeonpyeong,Chinese,Cold winters,Food,Front lines,Living conditions,Personal Loss,Physical destruction,Pride

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Guarding Prisoner of War Camps

Pell E. Johnson guarded Chinese and North Korean Prisoner of War camps. It was a rough placement due to the prisoners trying to mutiny. He feared Bay Day, a communist holiday and a possible uprising of prisoners.

Tags: Chinese,Communists,Fear,Front lines,Living conditions,North Koreans,POW

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Welcome Home

Pell E. Johnson remembers all the details about returning home from his duties in Korea. When he got home, his outlook on life changed. United States civilians did not understand the lifestyle soldiers had lived. He also feared the uncertainty of the future to come.

Tags: Civilians,Fear,Home front,Living conditions,Pride

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