World War I in Their Words Online Exhibits
Original entry by firstname.lastname@example.org, Georgia Archives Staff, November 26, 2018. Last edited December 07, 2018.
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Robert Burton Collection, ac. 2017-0006M.
Roy L. Bauer papers, ac. 1975-0468M.
Theodore K. Jones World War I papers, ac. 1969-0250M.
Troup Miller scrapbook, ac. 0000-0092M.
Nicolson family papers, ac. 1980-0039M.
Letter from Roy Bauer, March 26, 1918. Roy L. Bauer papers, ac. 1975-0468M.
France March 26th
My Dearest Ones: -
This is the first time since “our move” that I could write for I have been either so awfully busy or so dead tired that it was impossible. But things are adjusting themselves now & I have a little breathing spell.
It is all so interesting & at the same time so horrible.
I wish I could write you all about it - but it will have to wait until I get home.
Suffice it to say that considering our position - we are most comfortable, getting or at least (Lt. Boyd & I) wonderful French food and everything is all O.K. I have
had my first sight of the great war & it’s wonderful.
But everyone especially the French are so tired & sick of it all that its end will surely be a blessing.
Just imagine almost 4 years of the Hell of the trenches. It must be frightful. How can humans endure it?
The French are simply wonderful to us & cannot do too much to instruct us & make us comfortable.
I have seen the most marvelous aerial battles you can imagine. Were it not all so tragic I would love it.
I surely hope you are all as well as I am & having as many good things to eat. I could not want for better at home.
But of course this is exceptional & we are very lucky here. I have a real honest room which is very comfortable. Can you imagine all this right in the zone of the front.
The British are surely getting H - now, n’est pas? I only hope & pray that they can hold out.
Do you keep up with the daily advances & retreats? It’s our most
interesting pastime to plot them on the map.
How are Helen, Henry, Alene & H. Robert F.? Love & a kiss to all.
Haven’t heard from you now in a couple of weeks.
I am getting so used to the Boom! Boom! Boom! that when they stop I miss them.
Lots of love to all,
c/o 2nd Mobile Ordinance Repair Shop 2nd Division
U.S.P.O. 710 A.E.F.
Letter from Roy Bauer, June 26, 1918. Roy L. Bauer papers, ac. 1975-0468M.
France June 26th
Dearest ones all: -
Well we rec’d [received] our first mail to-day - after 3 weeks of waiting & I was very glad to get yours of May 30th. Also one from Mrs. I.H. Haas - Beulah Metzger & several others.
There is very little real news to give you.
I am all O.K. & hope to continue so - as I’m getting pretty d– tired of this game & want to come home. I think I am “bluer” to-day than I’ve been since I’m
abroad. Why I don’t know but this war game gets on ones nerves after a while & we’ve been in the line a bit too long this time. Shelling has been terrific of late on both sides. For a few days if not too close they are fun but after a time you get so tired of it - you want to walk out & step into one & have it over with.
But - c’est la vie militaire. Lets hope it will soon be over. How are all the kiddies? They will be so grown up on my return I won’t know them.
Jake sent me a fine photo of his boy. Seems to be a fine baby.
Troops seem to be coming over very fast. Well we need them believe me.
Yes! The Boche is stopped between Rheims [Reims] & Soissons & also in his latest Somme drive
But they are entrenched so d- deep & have so many fortified lines to fall back on that we surely have a job cut out for us.
And Oh! Say! I hear they are going to ship The U.S. aeroplane soon. Is that so? We’ve been looking for IT for some time.
I’ve been very busy of late but am physically fine & fit - eat well sleep well & etc.
How are all the H. Bauer’s. Hav’nt heard from them in some time.
Put on my first service strip on the 12th of this month - it being the end of my first 6 months in France.
They are very neat but I’ll be satisfied with one - n’est ce pas?
Beulah has been writing me very often & her letters are treasures. She’s a wonderful little girl - even if she is my first cousin. Only wish there were others with her amount of grey matter.
Well more anon -
Love to all,
Letter from Marie Sterling of Moultrie to Governor Dorsey, September 10, 1918. Defense, Miscellaneous WWI Records, RG 22-1-14.
Sept 10, 1918
Gov. Hugh M Dorsey
I am writing you in regards of my brother Charlie Sterling who is at Detention Camp Chickamauga Park, GA. He left us the third of September and we are certainly left in bad shape. We have a two horse farm to gather and no one to gather it but an old afflicted father and myself so you see if ever any
body needs any help it is surely us and I feel just like you can and well [will] do all you can to help us.
We have tried to get some help but on account of so many boys leaving it is impossible and you know that we can’t help feed the soldiers if we don’t have help but I am willing to do all I can.
My youngest brother left us too the 6th of September and I sure do feel like it is a shame to take two from one family in one week and especially where the father and mother are so old. If my father wasn’t so old and could get any help it wouldn’t worry me so bad. Now I want you to look into the matter if you please and see if they won’t let my brother come back to help us for I am sure all you do the Lord will certainly bless you for I will certainly bless you for I will pray for him too and I feel like he will hear my prayers.
His captain is Mr. Jno I. Kirk now I hope you will look into the matter at once and let me know.
Letter from Robert Burton to his mother, August 2, 1918. Robert Burton Collection, ac. 2017-0006M.
Aug 2, 1918
I know that you have been worried because you haven’t heard from me, but mother I have been a pretty busy man for the last month and a half. But I am still all in one piece.
Now listen I have been wounded, but not seriously so when you see my name in the casualty list don’t think anything about it for I am all O.K. I am in the hospital
now and am well cared for and well fed and am not feeling the least bit bad.
Listen and I will tell you all about it. We were over the top and I was advancing my squad and I was just going to advance again when something picked me up and set me down about 3 ft from where I was. I didn’t feel any especial pain right at the time so I advanced my squad about 150 yds farther along I then began to feel a shape pain in my right arm but I looked and didn’t see any blood and then I began to feel and I found a hole in my coat I saw a bullet sticking about halfway thru my coat. It had gone thru the fleshy part of my arm and thru the Bible that Auntie sent me and had stopped there. The Bible was all that kept it from
going all the way thru.
Now mama don’t you worry the least bit about me for I shall be ready to go back to the Co in a few days. Just keep sending my mail to the old address.
Has Frank gotten the application I sent yet? This is just a note to let you know that I am O.K. and for you not to worry. I don’t know how the other boys from home are I haven’t seen any of them in two or three days think tho that they are O.K.
Your devoted son
Letter from Robert Burton to his mother, Nov 17, 1918. Robert Burton Collection, 2017-0006M.
My dearest Mother:
Well will write you for the first time since the war has finished. Can you realize that the war has actually finished. For the first day or so I could not grasp that we would not have to go back up and fight some more. I am becoming more convinced each day that it has finished.
Long lines of Frenchmen pass each day & all day long coming from Germany. Most of them have been prisoners for four long miserable years and they tell some terrible tales of those four years.
I have read several letters from you, but as we were in the last fight I could not very well answer them at the time so will try to do so in this one.
Yes as I have already written you the box came OK. I am writing with the pen now and have not smoked all the cigarettes yet. Ed & I have both been smoking on them.
He is mess Sgt. of the Co now and had room to carry them so we have both been smoking on them. As I have written you the watch was broken but I think that I will be able to have it fixed. It was certainly the very thing that I wanted, it is surely a cracker jack.
I am glad that the allotments have begun to come in as I had about decided to stop it and get it straightened out. It has been changed
to $15 a month. They owe me $60 now so I suppose you will get $30 and papa the same amount. Be sure and keep it for now the WAR IS OVER I may be calling on you & papa for some money. This won’t be tho until I come back to the States. I should have some money from the $12 a month allotments that I made June 1917. You know I will have to have a new outfit when I get some and I certainly do mean to have good goods. I am going to have at least one tailor made suit But at that I won’t have to buy as much as most fellows for I have many shirts to last me for some time to come. I would like to shove my feet under that dining table and eat some real home cooked food. It would be the life and I think that I wouldn’t weaken a bit on it.
The wonder of wonders has caused to pass I received two Tribunes at once. The one with my letter in it came. I didn’t think much of those letters. They weren’t as good as I could have sent.
We will probably have to go into Germany and quiet down the population so that they can distribute food and the like. But that won’t last always and Mch 1 will see us in the US if not at home. Just to be in the US will surely a relief from war torn France. Even now the work of restoration has started and in 5 years there will be little signs of the war for Frances is an energetic country and thrifty too. I am real sorry that it could not be that I could be at home for Xmas, but I
thank our Heavenly Father each night that he spared me so miraculously this year of the war. We have only been over here only a year but we have certainly had some experienced one that we shall never forget.
Could it really be that we have won the war and that we won’t have to go up and fight any more. That the Germans wont shoot at us any more.
Great has been the celebrations in Frances since the Armistice was signed. Frenchmen coming back to their homes and the meeting of brothers & fathers & mothers & old friends. The Americans were certainly warmly received in the towns which they liberated. They have liberated many French towns and many thousands of the inhabitants.
Well mother dear will close for this time. Am waiting for a letter from you.
Your ever devoted son
Letter from Carolyn Nicolson of Atlanta to her brother Captain William Perrin Nicholson, November 15, 1918. Nicolson family papers, ac. 1980-0039M.
What wonderful news we have had this week, no more bloodshed among our boys. It took the Americans to whip them, and I am so proud of them, that I am almost bursting, and am overflowing with happiness at the thought of peace and more. Mr. Munmenger had a beautiful thanksgiving service Wednesday. I
could not go because it was the afternoon I go to the Fort [Fort McPherson] and I thought it would be better for me to play games with the wounded soldiers than it would be for me to go to church.
I am trying to make some Christmas presents now, but somehow I am not interested and things are moving slowly. I can not get the Christmas spirit, and suppose it will be here before I get anything done. We are filling some boxes for the soldiers in the A.E.F. The boxes are so small it is a job to find any thing to fit them.
Father and I rode out to Decatur this afternoon, and the woods are beautiful. We have had a very late fall and most of the trees have still got their leaves, and they are lovely shades of red, yellow and brown. I have never seen them any prettier than now. I suppose it is much colder in France than it is here, but I hope it will not be as cold here as it was last winter, for I nearly froze and don’t look forward with much pleasure for such weather again.
There is practically no news so I will close, and will try to do better next time. Lots of love from all,