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Friday, March 20, 2009

Letter 138 ~ February 13, 1919

I tell my mother Hattie that I expect to be handed my walking papers soon.

Addressed to Mrs. Hattie P. Griffing, Manhattan, KS

Nitro, West Virginia
February 13, 1919

Dear Folks,

It is raining this morning. We couldn’t go out to drill so I will write.

I will write about my discharge first as that is what is on my mind most of the time now and I suppose it is what interests you most too.

I signed my discharge last Monday evening and last night I signed my last payroll. My pay runs until the twentieth of this month and after that I suppose I am a civilian but I must wait here until my transportation papers come and my discharge goes around and comes back. I think I will be safe in saying that I will be home in two weeks. I expect to be examined today. It would be a sorry joke if they would find something the matter with me and I couldn’t get out after all. Some of the fellows are coming down with the mumps but as I have had them, I am not scared much.

One more hitch on guard is about all I will have to do. Then I can tell them to jump in the river.

Tomorrow is your birthday. I suppose you are planning to have the ladies for dinner as usual. I wish I was there to help you eat what was left over.

Last Sunday I went to church in the morning and was asked out to dinner – two girls and their mother. The father is dead. They have a son and brother over in France and so they treated me just like one of the family. Kentuckians, you know, and they sure showed the true southern hospitality. Mrs. Cox says, “Have some more biscuits son.” And I said, “Thanks, I believe I will, mother.” It tickled her to death. They had hot biscuits, roast beef, dressing, etc. etc. It beat hash, molasses, and bread like we had this morning.

The younger girl is about 19 or 20 and awfully nice. She and I went to the afternoon tea up the schoolhouse and we staid long enough for me to beat retreat. I took her home and she asked me when we had supper. Without thinking I told her that they had already had supper so she asked me in to supper. Well, I told her no – that I didn’t want to impose on good nature etc., etc. She says, “Well, if you don’t want to stay, alright.” So, of course, I couldn’t refuse that so had another nice time. We went to church and staid to the picture show afterwards. Ahem, guess I’ll borrow a Kodak and go out walking with her Saturday P.M.

It wouldn’t pay to send your Kodak, Willis, because I am coming home so soon.

It has been rather cold here lately too. I tell you, standing guard around four and five o’clock on a cold morning is a long ways from what I call fun but I’m nearly thru with it.

Well, I’ll see you soon. -- Ward

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