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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Letter 110 ~ December 8, 1918

Leonardville, Kansas ca. 1915

Minnie writes me about her school activities and what she did over the weekend in Sherman Township.

Addressed to Pvt. Ward C. Griffing, Co. E 20th Infantry, Camp Funston, Kansas

Stockdale, Kansas
[Sunday evening] December 8, 1918

Dear Boy:

Well, I had to stay here this weekend. I taught school yesterday and little Nellie Klein visited school. She intends to be in a little drill we are going to have. And we sure had one time of it. She’s only four years old and not the least bit bashful. Well, in the afternoon she began to cut loose and the things she didn’t know. She was playing with some blocks and she knocked them off the desk and they rolled all over. She jumped up in her seat and yelled out real loud, “Gosh! Darn!” She drolled it out long and loud. Well, that was just a beginner. I never heard tell of a child of her age using the slang and curse words she can, and she’d yell out any time and all the time. I just burst out laughing, I couldn’t help it, and so did all the children. I’m afraid we wouldn’t have much school if she was there all the time.

The mail man told me yesterday that all the schools were to be closed (just as they were before) the 20th of December. He said it was in that day’s paper. Well, I went into the school house & told the children what he said and we all went home thinking we would have no more school. When I got home I found nothing of the kind. The Manhattan schools were to be closed and I think that’s what he saw. So today I had to call all the children and tell them we would have school.

This morning I intended to do some of my school work that I have been putting off from time to time, then Mrs. Parkerson wanted me to go up to [William] Hoffman’s with her. There were three families there. Two car loads came from Manhattan last eve. We stayed there till noon. Then this afternoon we went to church and Sunday School over at Grandview, a rather nice country church and real nice people. It made me think of the day we went to Vinton Church. I met lots of people and sang in the choir. I would have much rather not have done that but they insisted so I thought I better.

Tonight Krause’s called and wanted me to go up on the hill to the German Church with them. I went and had a ‘good time.’ There wasn’t much preaching and I was with the craziest bunch of kids. So the work I didn’t get done between church this afternoon and church tonight, I had to finish tonight when I got home. It’s getting pretty late now.

I called Mrs. Dyer this morning and had a nice long talk with her. She is going to meet me in Leonardville next Saturday and take me out to her home if Parkerson’s or anyone around here goes to Leonardville which they are almost sure to do.

You know I wanted to go over to Camp Funston so bad yesterday [to watch the Divisional Parade Review] and Mrs. Dyer told me they were over there and saw my folks. She said they just passed them – that was all. I sure was raving when I heard that. It seems like I never do get to go when I want to go. I didn’t have any idea the folks would go up yesterday.

The German preacher said tonight that he was talking to a soldier boy today and the boy said that beginning with today, they were going to release ten members from every Company each day till they were all discharged. I hope you will be one of them if that’s true.

Next week is the end of my third month of school. It ought to be nearly the end of my 4th month.

Well, I must go to bed or I’ll not have any pep tomorrow in school. Keep good care of yourself boy and don’t get the flu. I’m sure afraid of that.

I wonder what you did today since you couldn’t get a pass. It was such a pretty day. I wish we could have been together. Your little girl, -- Minnie

[P.S.] Write often.

  • Nellie Klein was the four year-old sister of Zelphia Klein, one of Minnie’s students.
  • Probably 48 year-old Mima (Carey) Dyer who lived with her 74 year-old husband Samuel Dyer and their three children on a farm in Madison Township, Riley County, Kansas. Mima and Samuel Dyer’s eldest daughter, Louisa, married Minnie’s brother, Jesse Frey, on 5 September 1916.

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