Feb. 17 – 1919
Dear Mother Father Bros & Sisters
This evening I will write you a few lines, to at last let
you know that I am not among the casuals. There seems to
be a foul up in the mail service lately. so many of the
fellows are complaining about delays in delivery. Well
mama I hope you are all the same as ever at home, it has
been some time since I rec a letter
from you. The Christmas
package you sent must be lost for I have never rec it yet.
Willie wrote me a few days ago, he is in a small town on the
other side of the Rhine. I will go down to see him soon if
my pass goes through. From what he says the marines will
get stuck over here for some time. The rumor is out again that
the 42nd is due to leave in the
coarse of a few weeks.
General Pershing is to review us at Ramgen[?] about the
middle of the week, this is a good indication of us getting
relieved soon after the review. If we leave here the chances
are we will embark from Rotterdam which is a short distance
down the Rhine. John Smith was in here today on pass. This
is the first time I have seen him since we left Camp Mills.
He lived in the N./E. and joined the aviation signal corps
soon after I enlisted. Carl Kirkman was here a short time
ago, he is a second Lieut in the balloon squadron stationed
outside of Coblenz. I heard Dutch Smidth was made a second
Lieut since he came over. It was in the same Div. as C. Smith.
There is nothing going on here much to write about, news comes
& goes. just rec news tonight that Walter Hopper died in
the Div Hospital at Neuennahr. That's sure luck going all
through the war and get this far and die. He was from K.C.
and had been acting Stable Sergeant in our Co. most of the
time we were on the front. Athletics are taking the place of
drilling among the occupation troops to pass the time away.
Nearly every regiment
in the Div. has a show made up among the
talent in the Reg. and go from town to town. Some of them are
good and draw big crowds. We get passes nearly every night to
visit in the near by towns. Last Sunday I went out horse back
riding out among the hills and wound up at a small dutch town
about 15 kil. from here. The people seem away behind time,
they make their living mostly from raising grapes and have small
patches of farms. The Burgermaster is the main squeeze in town
and generally the most popular citizen. He is the same as
our mayor, but acts according with the germans laws which
gives him all authority over the people. There is lots of Deer
& wild bore among these hills. A few of our fellows thought
they would try their hand at hunting Deer. They killed a
couple and this got the bunch started until it got to be a
regular thing. The German people were scared so bad they
wouldn't even go to church or hardly come out, an order was
issued against it so Hunting wild game is finished here. Mama
you propably have been reading in the papers about the
35th Div. which an investigation
is being made. From what I know
they certainly must have met with awful resistance. We were
over the same ground they lost so heavily on and believe me it
The front was later reinforced, and the Germans
were pushed clear to Sedan. I was detailed to go up the
night the final push was to begin. Zero hour was set,
and ever gun for miles around started to boom, the german
lines were plowed up like powder, believe me it was a sight.
Well mama I hope your are getting a relief from the cold
weather. It has been just like spring here, but couldn't say
how long it will stay. Mama the very next time I go to a big town
I will have my picture taken, no joking this time, you probably
won't know me for they say I am getting fatter and uglier. ~ha!
Joe sure is big what has he been eating anyhow? Well mama I
will close hope you & papa are enjoying good health and having
a good time. Tell all the kids hello and not to grow up so I
will not know em when I get there. It is nearly time for gaurd
mount so good bye.