Document Type

Personal Letter

Abstract

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Sun 1 Oct 44

Thurs 28 Sep 44

Women’s Army Corps (WACS) letterhead

Dear Folks,

As you can see, I started to write this letter Thurs. but didn’t even get the first sentence started! I guess I have only written a note since a week ago last Friday, so I’ll start with last week-end. – I had Sat PM off and went to Macon – I didn’t have as good luck as usual in getting a room. I had to wait from 2 to 5 before there was an opening but finally I did manage to get one – not as good as usual as it had a double instead of twin beds – but it was

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nice enough. – Marjorie had KP and didn’t get in town until the middle of the evening but Kerner came in and had supper with me. We ate a[t] Smitty’s for a change and had a really good meal much more reasonably than we have been getting. For dessert we had Frozen Custard which was as near like the Garland Folks make as anything I’ve ever had. It was delicious.

Marj & I slept until almost noon, then had breakfast & went to church. We laid around the room until 5 then ate dinner and went back to camp.

We couldn’t pick up our 3 day passes until nearly midnight so we packed

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and then visited with the girls until lights out. We got our passes about quarter of eleven and got in town in time for a bite to eat before the Florida bus left at 12.30. It wasn’t very comfortable riding, but we got seats because, being soldiers we got in first. We got in Jacksonville Fla about 10.30 the next morning and got a local bus to St Augustine – about an hour’s ride.

Minnie & her folks had been there the week before, so she told us the name of their hotel and we stayed at the same one. It was very nice –

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a corner room with a private bath for $3 apiece per night – It was a small hotel – almost a rooming house really.

After dinner which we ate in a restaurant downtown, we took an hour’s ride in a carriage with a Negro driver who told us in vast detail all the history connected with each place we passed – The biggest hotel – the Spanish Governor’s House – The oldest churches – The oldest house in the U. S. – The oldest schoolhouse – The National Cemetery – the old Huguenot cemetery – the old Spanish cemetery with its cement

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tombs on top of the ground – and the old fort.

I loved the carriage ride & decided that if ever we get to Mount Desert again that’s one thing we are going to do. – Take a carriage ride around Jordon Pond -.

The streets are very narrow and the houses many of them are of Spanish Architecture with a sort of stucco walls instead of wood – casement windows & frequently carved gables. – The city is

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on a bay rather than looking directly out to sea. – but it was grand to sit by the water again, believe me.

As I mentioned on my card, it was the trees & flowers which interested me most. It is very interesting to see the palm trees in their various stages of growth. They ranged anywhere from 4 ft to way about the house tops, but always the same amount of foliage with varying lengths of tree trunks.

There was one outside my window which was by far the tallest straightest tree I’d ever seen.

There were a variety of kinds of Palms as well as sizes.

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The Habiscus (sic) flower – a bright red flower – was in bloom and there were many of them. –

We walked around the rest of [the] afternoon but went back to the room after supper and went to bed very early.

We didn’t get up until about 10 the next morning – Then did sightseeing – until dinner time. We took another carriage ride. – This time in a carriage with 2 horses which cost us $3.00 an hour. – We went to the Fountain of Youth and to the oldest schoolhouse – at each of which places we paid to get in and then listened to a guide tell us in a terrible

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sing song voice – all about the historical traditions there. We left the carriage at the fort and spent about an hour there – It was on the same style as Fort Knox but made of coquina (a shell rock) instead of granite and there was water in the moat. There were no long gun corridors as there are at Ft. Knox. It was not as interesting except for the fact that it had really been used as a fort, soldiers had lived there and there had been battles fought over it.

After dinner, we visited the oldest house which is now a museum. There was a fairly good collection of antiques.

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Though not as good collections as I have seen in Maine & Mass.

Then we got our bathing suits and took a taxi to the beach which is about 4 miles out of town. Swell sand beach looking right out on the ocean. The water was rough as it was very windy so that the breakers were quite high but the water was just as warm as could be. We stayed there 2 hours and boy we sure enjoyed it.

We went to the movies in the evening.

We didn’t have particularly good luck on the food, but not too bad either. I had lobster salad

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one night which was fairly good, but couldn’t get any broiled lobster.

We did find a drug store that had real, good ice cream with good chocolate sauce so we had several sundaes which was a rare treat.

We left for Jacksonville at 9.10, had 3hrs there, and then got the bus for Macon arriving back at camp at 11.30 PM. We window shopped in Jacksonville and the[n] spent about an hour reading in the USO. Those USO’s are wonderful to have. Just to have a place to go and sit while waiting is worth a good deal to the service people,

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believe me!

When we got back to camp we found that General Lear, the head of the Army Ground Forces, was here on an inspection trip and that we would have a formal inspection before work the next day by one of his staff officers. As you can imagine, Marjorie & I certainly had to scramble to get unpacked and ready for that inspection but we made it OK and the Colonel rated the WAC Det superior.

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It’s midnight and I must stop. I’ll write again in a day or two and get caught up-to date on the news.

Love

Kay

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