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November 9, 1944

Letters from Harold J. Dahl

Letters from Harold J Dahl November 9 1944

Somewhere in Belgium
November 9, 1944
[handwritten afterwards: Elsenborn]

Dear Mom & Lou,
Yesterday I had your letters of October 20th & 23rd and today the one of the 29th got here so you can see that the mail is about as irregular on both sides of the ocean.

It is nice to know that no other G.I. has taken my place as little Kate’s “Soldier Man” [Clint Scilipote’s daughter] - she used to be so cute about it down in Washington. Can’t say that I blame her for liking Sam Corey; he is an awfully sweet sort of guy, isn’t he?

Harold Dahl and Mary Van Duyne posing outside barracks 1944

Harold Dahl and Mary Van Duyne

I’ve got more packages on the way than I deserve, by the sound of things. Otis Riggs & I designed a “thank-you” card for packages - utilizing a character he made up and has been showing in various graphic chronicles. Hovel has been doing some grand stuff - wish I had copies of all of it. I’m glad to see you mention fruit cake - it goes so well with a late cup of black coffee, - but I never expected to hear of any package from Clint & Shirl [Scilopoti]. It’s awfully nice of them to think of me just when the future seem to point towards some rough days for them.

I guess Mary [Van Duyne] must have been thrilled at her experiences which probably bore some resemblance to some that I had at one time except that I rather imagine hers was a little more placid. I wonder if she managed to keep her equilibrium through it all.

Norman [Dahl] must have been interested in those book I sent home - especially when you consider that their total cost was less than a carton of cigarettes that I wouldn’t smoke anyway and that were free issue from the Red Cross. People in Paris and thereabouts told us that when the Germans were there they paid 160 francs (about $3.00) for a pack of cigarettes. In another place it was 200 fr. for a measly little pack of 12 skinny cigarettes with almost no tobacco in them.

I’m sending home some more stamps - these are from the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg which, until the war, was largely known only to stamp collectors and those who happened to know that the great international cartels are established. Is is sort of a Wilmington, Delaware of Europe.

You know, girls ought to try to get husbands who had been field soldiers - It is beyond me how anyone who had pulled KP would want to see his wife do dishes all the time, nor would anyone who had laboriously scrubbed filthy dirty OD’s & fatigues want her to do any hand laundry - and I doubt that any thoughtful guy who had ever stood guard would needlessly keep her waiting on a street corner. Pretty good sales talk, eh?

Well, I hope you will have a good dinner on Thanksgiving - I’d rather have cold lamb there than turkey here, believe you me.


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