32ned Engineers January 20, 1919 WWI Letter

This letter was written by a soldier in France, after armistice, January 20, 1919. He was with the 32nd Engineers. The envelope contained two letters. This one, and another one dated Jan. 16. This is the second (20th). From the letter…….

Dear Folks,

   Got back to the barracks Saturday afternoon. Am feeling O.K. Got your letter of Dec. 29th and was glad to hear you were getting along all right. You say you are all feeling fine, but I can’t quite see how that can be on account of old Jack being no more. Strikes me you are just a bit hard-hearted, don’t you know. So you are having real winter now, and I haven’t seen a flake of snow. It hasn’t rained quite so much here lately, and the weather is a little cooler, some mornings being rather frosty. Perhaps if you have some real cold weather it will freeze out the “flu.” Haven’t heard of any over here for some time, hope it does not break out again.
   Ida still sticks to her old ideas on fortune telling, it seems, but most anyone could have told her what that fortune teller did and not half try. Uncle Sam isn’t going to send the boys home till he’s through with them, and that may take quite a while yet. Of course there are some going home, those that are not needed, but no Engineers that I know of. Was down to the docks two weeks ago and saw some troops go aboard, but I didn’t wish I was one of them. The boat wasn’t very big and the sea is very rough at this time of year, and it wouldn’t be very pleasant to be dumped out into the middle. I’d rather wait a while. Oh, I don’t hardly think it will be “years and years” till Shurman is mustered out, although I shouldn’t be ata all surprised if it seemed that long to some.
   Sorry to hear of Mrs. Wolf’s death, also the Pierson boy’s, but such is the way of the world, I guess!
   Played at the K.C. hall in Bordeaux yesterday afternoon. The 46th Coast Artillery band went with us, so we had a big band. We play down there at the dance Wednesday night, this wee. The same band will probably go with us if they are here, if not, perhaps the 45th Coast Artillery band. I hear they are still trying to enlarge our band, and I sure would be very glad if they would, it would be much more interesting, to say nothing of the extra francs I would get every month. I suppose Aloys and Tates got a whole sled load of rabbits. If the war had not ended when it did, our regiment would have done some hunting, or I understand orders had already been out and transportation arranged for us to go to the front, where we were to get rifles, etc., issued to us. We have helmets and gas masks now, but they were issued as souvenirs, several days ago. I think I’ll take a hammer and put a few dents in my helmet, so when I get home folks will think I was in the thickest of the fray. Well, I will say good bye for this time, and I have to go and practice a while.

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