• Bullet letter
  • If all the sky were paper
  • Andrew Carroll speaks about his war letters project

The Center for American War Letters


The Center for American War Letters (CAWL) is a unique and extensive manuscript collection of previously unpublished war letters from every American conflict, beginning with handwritten missives composed during the Revolutionary War and continuing up to emails sent from Iraq and Afghanistan. These personal war-time correspondences are a vital record of the collective memory of the American people, as witnessed and articulated by service members, veterans, and their loved ones, who experienced these wars firsthand.

The Center for American War Letters is committed to the ongoing collection, preservation, and promotion of these incomparable records of the American experience through various projects and media, including:

  • The production of plays and live readings throughout the United States
  • Documentaries and video recordings of troops, veterans, and their families telling their stories in their own voices and/or reading their letters
  • Traveling exhibits
  • Articles and books that incorporate the letters
  • Educational guides to assist teachers and community leaders with the interpretation of these primary sources in the classroom
  • Additional materials that will encourage Americans to recognize the extraordinary historical, cultural, and literary value of these irreplaceable documents.

Ultimately, the Center will work to expand its collection and strive to become the nation’s largest and most preeminent archive of personal wartime correspondences. The Center for American War Letters is directed by Andrew Carroll.

  • War Comes Home: The Legacy, May 5 - June 21, 2015
  • War Comes Home: The Legacy is a partnership between Cal Humanities, the California State Library and Exhibit Envoy. It is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the BayTree Fund, The Whitman Fund, and the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian
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If All the Sky Were Paper by Andrew Carroll

If All the Sky Were Paper is headed to the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.

In advance of the performances, director John Benitz and playwright Andrew Carroll sat down with WTMD's Alex Cortright.

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    Contact Us

    Please send war-related letters and emails to:

    The Center for American War Letters
    c/o Andrew Carroll
    One University Drive
    Orange, CA 92866

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