From Em, Everett Mass. 8/24/1918

Dear Sam.

 

This has been another warm day but it is now a little cooler. This is Saturday and you know all the Saturdays are alike here. Lena and I are waiting for Bert and he ought to be here soon. They are putting new car rails down in Chelsea St. and he is flagging cars. He gets through at six o’clock. Pa has his hours changed this week from ten to eight and he wont get here until nine o’clock. Its vacation time now and he gets shifted around. Leonard is six years old today and he will be over tomorrow sure. They come over every Sunday and it makes it seem real homelike.

 

The old Priest of the St. Francis de Sales Church died this afternoon. You remember the time Mr. Holland introduced you to him don’t you? He was called “Father James.” He will be greatly missed on the hill.

 

I see by the papers that Sergt. Melvin has a commission as Leiutenant. How many of the old Co. K. crowd are with you now and who are they? We are trying to keep tabs on the old bunch. I hear that the three Coynes have gone over.

 

Well I guess Bert is not coming home right away so Lena and I are going to have our supper now and then go down the Square and do some shopping. Hoping this letter finds you in good health I remain.

 

With Love from all

Em.

 

[This letter was returned to sender while Sam was in hospitals]

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

Base Hospital No. 6 at Bordeaux, 8/19/1918

 

Dear Em.

 

I have again been transfered to a base hospital making the forth now since Aug 2. Expecting all the time that I would be well enough to go back to the company for duty I havent sent for my mail to be forwarded, and if I had I believe it would be following me all over France for I havent been in one place long enough to have had any mail answered.

 

Will say that Im an awful long way from the front now, the first time that Ive been out of sound of the big guns since Feb. 1. The climate is great here not having seen as much as a cloud in the sky since my arrival. My stumack is O.K. all but at times when it bothers me a little. Im improving all the time. Ive got back the most of my strength (which was never much you know) and some of my weight (which is another thing I can’t boast much of). All the boys in the ward call me slim so you see Im just about normal.

 

There is a fellow here that lives in Hayes Square, and we sure have had some real chats since making ourselves known to each other. He was drafted and only landed in France some time in May. He is in the artillery and took part in our recent drive on the Marne. He has the same trouble as my selve although he is in worse shape. He is the first chap Ive met from Charlestown since leaving for the front away back in Feb.

 

Im sending all my letters to 297 until I get a letter giving the new address, trusting that they reach you all right. Gee I would like to hear from you, but I had to go and get sick and now Ive got to put up with the result.

 

With best wishes to all I am

 

Sam.

 

S.E. Avery, Hdq Co. 103rd Inf. Am. Ex. Forces

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

From Em, Everett Mass. 8/17/1918

Dear Sam.

 

Received your letter dated July 2, and it sure was welcome news to hear you were still O.K. I am glad you received the pictures and I know it must seem good to you to received mail at the place you are in. We took some pictures of the kitten but they didn’t come out very good so I won’t bother to send any to you.

 

This is a fine day. It is nice and cool. We have just got through supper and I wish you could have had some of these beans. There was a piece in the paper about President Wilson driving all around Boston and no one recognized him. He went through Newspaper Row and the North End and down Revere. He certainly put one over on Boston alright.

 

It is such a swell night I think Ill go out. Uncle Al was over last night and I told him you received his letter. He said he would write again some time. Lena is frosting a cake. I guess she must be expecting Henry over. (Stick your nose in it, Sam). She gives him a loaf of home made bread once in a while and he certainly appreciates it.

 

Pa is out on the piazza enjoying his pipe and reading the paper. He is always out on the piazza and the kitten stays out there with him. Aunt Madge and her folks are all well and so are we. Hoping this finds you in the best of health I will close.

 

With Love from all

Em.

 

[This letter was returned to sender while Sam was in hospitals]

 

 © Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

Evacuation Hospital No. 7 at Chateau Montanglaust, 8/13/1918

Chateau Montanglaust

Dear Em,

 

"American Nurse" by Baldridge, 1918

Ive been transferred to another hospital and getting along very nicely now, getting very good treatment. My stumack must have got in pretty bad shape alright to have put me in a hospital all this time. There are quite a few cases of this nature though some not getting along as good as I am. The nurses are very pleasant here and try to do all they can for us. I was in hopes of being able to join the company again from the field hospital but the doc said no so here I am. I feel fine today and in high hopes of getting kicked out to find my company very soon.

 

Ive received no mail since long before entering the hospital and don’t expect to until I get back to the company for they don’t know where I am and cant send it. The Y.M.C.A. man just came around and gave us a sack of Bull and this writing paper both coming in very handy. Gee I wish I could get ahold of the mail that Im pretty sure must be waiting for me where the company is. I wish I had something to say but it’s the same old story. If I had some of your letters I might fill this paper up a little by answering some of them.

 

Well Ill be out of this pretty soon and then watch out for mail. I hope this finds you all well and rest assured that by the time this reaches you I will have been with my company some time. Give my regards to all, I remain

 

Sam

Samuel E. Avery Hdq. Co. 103rd Inf.

 

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

From Lena, Everett Mass. 8/13/1918

Dear Sam.

 

This has been a hot day but there is a little breeze blowing now which feels quite nice. I just came in from Bert’s mothers and I found Millie writing to you so I thought I might to do a little. Ive dreamt three times in a week that you was home and I hope soon one of those dreams will come true.

 

The papers are very encouraging latley and the French gave the Yanks great praise. Lil was over one night and I realy think she enjoyed herself. Billie Rogers and his wife was here the same night and they are as good as any team on the stage. I served a light supper of salad and “Im Neutral” was the hit of the evening. Bert had to play it 4 times for Rogers. You would have the time of your life if you was here.

 

We have a kitten that is ready to play every minute of the day. Just now she is in and out of Berts shoes. When pa is reaching she runs up his leg to his shoulder and he thinks she is some cat.

 

Now Sam there is no news but I know you like to get one of these letters even if they are short. Bert has to register Sept.3rd ages between 31-45. Every body is well and we all think of you in these days of the big doings. Just watch out and get home when its all over.

 

Love from all

Lena

 

[This letter was returned to sender while Sam was in hospitals]

 

 © Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

From Em, Everett Mass. 8/12/1918

Dear Sam.

 

If you are getting mail regular you will wonder what happened to me and my mail. I haven’t written to you for a week but to tell the truth news is scarce and its the same thing over and over. I fool a lot of my time away playing with the kitten. She is lying in my lap now watching this pencil. We all leave here early in the morning so Lena goes back to bed and the kitten goes with her.

 

I saw that movie picture “My Four Years in Germany” written by Girard and it was worth seeing. There was no story to it, only facts and true happenings that he himself witnessed. Plants gave out tickets to his employees and I went with the Higgins.

 

It was another hot day and it will be a hot night. I received a card from Lil. She is on her vacation. I get one week in September and I am going to stay right here at home and rest. Leonard went home Sunday. When he saw his father he got homesick. Every night in bed he asked me when you were coming home. He says he’ll stay over six weeks. He likes to be over here but I guess he misses the kids on the street.

 

This would be a good night for the beach but I have to get up early in the morning. We are all well and every one sends their regards. Hoping this letter finds you well and in the best of spirits I will close.

 

With Love from all

Em.

 

[This letter was returned to sender while Sam was in hospitals]

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

From Em, Everett Mass. 8/7/1918

Dear Sam.

 

Received two letters from you last Monday night. Your letters were dated July 1 & 6. We all went down the movies and it was late when we got home. Henry was over last night to supper and he stayed quite late but as late as it is now I am going to write any way. Alice (Bert’s sister) was over all evening and she played the piano. It is almost ten o’clock and I am going to put few words down on this trusty old paper just to let you know that I am still with you.

 

This was the first mail we got from you for almost a month and it was good news to hear you are still well and on the job. In your letter you spoke of reaching your new sector. Yes I guess you are well into it now alright.

 

I haven’t been down the beach lately and in fact I haven’t been anywhere to speak since we moved out here. It is so late when I get home and anyway the back piazza is the coolest spot in the country. I roll out of bed at 5.30 and leave here and at 6.15. I get home at 6.30 and like to get to bed at ten o’clock. We took the kitten picture and we are going to send one to you when we get them. Leonard is all undressed and he is waiting for me to go to bed with him. We are great bed chums. We are all well and we hope this finds you the same.

 

With Love from all

Em.

 

P.S. After you kill some more germans and knock the Kaisiers head off come home. I think you are a fine soldier. With Love Leonard X X X

 

[This letter was returned to sender while Sam was in hospitals]

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

Field Hospital No. 104 at Luzancy, 8/6/1918

 

Dear Em,

 

It will some what surprise you to learn where I am but I want to say right here that Im getting along alright and when I get some of my old time strength back again (which will be in a very few days now) I will go from here. If my last letter reached you alright and if you will recall what it said you will remember that I wrote it just after we were relieved after a very tough seige of it.

 

Well we stayed in those woods for two or three days after I sent that letter and then we started on a two day hike. I felt myself going it seemed at every step the second day but I stuck it out until I finished and (then) I went all to peices. You all know what I am when my stomack goes back on me. To sum it all up I was completely all in. Even then I tried to stick it out and not come to the hospital (this lasted two more days) but at last I was driven to this place. The first time (as far as I know) that I was ever in a hospital in my life. Of coarse if I was home there Lena could have fixed me up in no time (but you’re not at home in the army). That song “I don’t want to get well” dont go with me.

 

Ive been here since the second and I know there must be some mail back at the company for me. Another reason why I want to get well. We expect to get furloughs soon, and Ill at least have had a good rest before getting mine.

 

To change the subject, what do you think of the Hun? The N.A.’s are at em now and I hope they finish them. You will no doubt see now why you havent heard from me for so long. Give my regards to all and rest contented that Ill be O.K. very soon. I hope you are well settled in the new place. Ill have to close

 

Sam

 

Samuel E. Avery Hdq. Co. 103rd Inf.

 

P.S. Well in looking over the letters you sent I can’t find the one with the new address so I will have to send this to the old stand. The only envelope I could scrape up. How do you like it?

 

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

From Em, Everett Mass. 8/4/1918

Dear Sam.

 

It is just a week since I last wrote to you and I realy intended to write before. It is over three weeks now since we heard from you but of course we understand how things are and how busy you must be. You are certainly doing great work and keep it up.

 

We have a new member added to the family which takes up a lot of my time. Bert brought home a little kitten and it looks so much like Toodles that we named it Toodles. We are going to take her picture and send it to you. We have Leonard over here with us for two weeks. He told Mrs. Dowden Lena and I all about the movies and he made us laugh until I thought we’d bust. Henry and Bert went to the ball game. (The navy teams are playing today). We are going down to the movies tomorrow night with Leonard. He said if he was a soldier he’d kill the Kiaser and get full of medals.

 

The Telephone School is closed until September so I’ll have to wait until it opens again before I can try for a job. We are trying to get a telephone in but I don’t know when they intend to come with it. Pa bought a telephone stand and a chair that he can use when he wants to read. Aunt Madge and Molly are coming out here next Wednesday to spend the day. They were coming out last week but Madge was sick and they called it off. Madge hears from Tom quite often now and he give a good account of himself.

 

Uncle Al was over Friday night and he brought the old Family Bible from Maine. Seeing that Pa was the only one who had a family he gave it to him. Pa reconized it right away and he was glad to get it. Its as big as a picture album and we have it on the parlor table. In looking over the family record it shows that Pa was born in ’52 making him 66 years old.

 

Bert and Henry got home from the ball game and we just got through our supper. We are now waiting for Pa. He don’t get home tonight until 8.30. Bert’s sister Alice and her friend are coming over and we are going to have a sing.

 

I hope this letter reaches you O.K. and that it finds you in the best of health. We are all feeling fine and this air out here is great. Lena is now at the piano and I am going to close wishing that you return home soon. Henry and Leonard sends their love and of cource you know is always the same.

 

With Love from all

Em.

 

[This letter was returned to sender while Sam was in hospitals]

 

© Copyright 2009 by Richard Landers, All Rights Reserved. No reproduction without permission.

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