February 21, 1943
Letters from George Daley
To: Mrs George Daley 75 Highland Ave. So. Norwalk Conn.
Candidate George Daley Jr
Co. P 29 – 3 7th Plt
3rd Engineer Sch Rgt. Fort Belvoir, VA
This is the first chance I’ve had to write since I’ve been here. Everything is strictly Army style here. You get up at 5:45 in the morning and go to bed at 10:30 at nite. Every minuet (sic) of that time you’re on the go. You don’t even have time to blow your nose. The only chance you get to sit down is during dinner and supper – you have 20 minuets (sic) to eat in and then you (sic) off again. Your correct title is “Mister” and they make it cut like a knife. The only time you open your mouth is when an officer asks you a question and then it’s a dam (sic) few words. Mostly “Yes Sir” or “No Sir”.
Everywhere you go you march at attention – the minuet (sic) you step outside the barracks doors you act like a soldier or else you get in hot water – you polish shoes about a thousand times a day so send me a shoe polish outfit with some extra polish – army brown.
We left Fort Devens last Wed nite at about 11:30 at nite – the five of us from school were together and we still are. We took the sleeper out of Ayer, Mass and came through Stamford about 7:30 in the morning. I was just getting up and I missed So. Norwalk. When we got to New York we had breakfast and then went to Penn Station and took the 10:30 train to Washington. It was a beautiful day and so I saw most of the country. We ate dinner on the train – I guess we were around Baltimore – we had a few minuets (sic) in Washington. There’s no snow on the ground here and today it was warm enough with just a shirt on.
You have about twice as much studying to do in one night as you can possibly do – your (sic) not allowed out of any area about the size of Hyde Park for 4 weeks. I don’t know whether I’ll ever get through the place or not – it’s plenty tough. What they try to do is make a man give up and the second he gives any indication of quitting the (sic) kick him out. In fact you can get kicked out for even the smallest thing. Sleeping in class is sufficient.
I’m going to need a few things – for money – about $2 or $3 will do. The shoe polish – wash cloth – an old rag for dusting etc, - some coat hangers – Eversharp pencil – small notebook and paper about 8 x 10 size – not one of those large ones like the girls have for school or a small one that you have to look twice to see. Don’t send me my watch because it’s to (sic) rough on a good watch here – and if you’ve got a case I want to send my ring back because I don’t want to scratch it. The only place you can spend any money is at the Post Exchange and then you have to buy mostly essential things.
If everything goes o.k. I’ll be out of here May 12 but you can’t tell I may be out sooner.
If Dad is still in Bridgeport I’m going to write him – but you very rarely have the time to write – weekends are about the only time.