Monday, November 14, 2011

Homesick? Or War Weary?

In the rest of Frank Stevens’ March 4th letter home—the first to go to the new Chicago address—he betrays some hints of wanting to get back home, or at least of moving on to a different assignment.

 Looks as though that scuttlebutt about getting relieved the first of March is bum dope, I just hope we will all be home by next Christmas. I’m glad you found a nice place, it sounds as if it’s going to be all-right. Did you notice whether or not there were any good looking squaws in the new neighborhood??? I’ve been doing all right for my sweet smelling sister, tell her that her short snorter will be the envy of the gang. Did a little work today. I had to give 40 shots (plague), it’s days like these that make the crew wonder whether or not I should be tossed in the drink. The Boots just came through and informed us lights were going off in five minutes so I’ll have to finish this tomorrow. Till then, love, Frank.
                                                                     April 6th, 1945
Hi again:
            Just have time to finish this off. Things are still going along okay so don’t worry. Nothing new except a batch of sore arms. Have to quit now. Lots of love, Your Keed, Frank

Things must still have been hopping on board, despite Frank’s minimizing of his duties. Whatever the reason for misdating his postscript, the letter did get off in time to arrive with a March postmark at the new home of his parents, William and Agnes Tully Stevens—who probably still discarded their boy’s advice and continued worrying about him.


  1. Plague? Hmmm... My cousin speaks of bubonic plague in his notes. I wonder if there was a shot for that? Lets see, after Iwo Jima came Okinawa which started in mid-April 1945 and lasted over two and a half months. I don't think Frank was destined to see much rest for awhile - but thankfully soon after Okinawa was over - the war ended. Hopefully he then returned home soon after.

  2. Jacqi,
    Hi. Thanks for dropping by my blog. It's so wonderful that you have these letters and are posting them. I, too have about 300 WWII letters from my uncle, and am thinking of making a blog to post them. They are true treasures. Do you know about the Veterans' Project at the Library of Congress? They are collecting vets' letters and I feel it's a safer place than leaving them in the hands of family members that may or may not treasure them (I'm scanning mine, but will donate the originals to a research library here in Chicago). My uncle's name was also Frank -- and it's fascinating -- but his handwriting is amazingly similar to this Frank's! Also about the same age. My Uncle Frank was born May 14, 1924. Since your Frank flew in the Pacific, I'm sure you'd love the book, Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand. Chilling and uplifting in the end. Thanks for posting these important historical documents.


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