Prelude: Here is another letter from Young Hank to Mrs. Fairfield of Hornell, NY. Young Hank is stationed in Europe and has been somewhere in Italy for several months. He has now moved to somewhere in France. This letter was written on September 26, 1944, and there was no envelope.
Southern XXXXX France September 26, 44
I received your letter the other day but have not had a chance to answer it. It took me a long time to catch up with my mail so now I have a lot to answer.
Your letter found me feeling fine and getting along the best. We hadn’t received any mail in over three weeks, so it was swell getting it when we did. Mail is really a moral builder. You really don’t appreciate it until you don’t get any for a week or two.
One of the fellows just called my attention to the fact that I put Italy instead of France at the top of the letter. I wrote Italy so long it got to be a habit. Now it will be France.
There isn’t much I can say about this country so far. It is a lot cleaner I think. The roads are better and the towns and cities are nicer, at least what I have seen of them have been. I think the weather is more like it is at home too.
I see by your letter that Frank got sick and went to Canada fishing. I don’t blame him a darn bit. The wife and I are, or plan on going up there again someday.
So, they still have the horse traders convention? We used to go up there every year and have a heck of a good time.
The weather here is real good. Yesterday and today were especially nice. It’s like those days at home when you feel like going for a walk in the country. I think you know the kind I mean.
The boys are all fine and send their regards to you all. As I said before, there all a swell bunch of fellows.
There really isn’t much to write about just now. Here’s hoping this finds you all well and happy. Tell Mr. Fairfield I said hello and wish him better luck on his next trip north.
I love these letters from Young Hank. He seems like such a swell guy. He is always writing upbeat letters even though he is in the middle of a war. I sense that he is a little home sick as he talks about taking a walk in the country. Most of the letters I have of his are all about nothing. I think that if you read between the lines, you’ll find that there is a heart and a soul longing for the war to be over. What do you think?