Thursday, November 26, 2015

June 1944

May 1944

April 1944

Howard wrote from McCloskey General Hospital on April 14, 1944:

My Darling Margaret:
     I have bummed the use of a typewriter from Mrs. Red who is the ward officer's secretary and perhaps you will be able to read this letter more easily than the last. I have several letters from you, the last one to-day. I am supposed to go to San Antonio to-morrow and I will certainly get there by the 16th at leat. They tell me here that I will probably be pushed around there for a couple of weeks at the bst. I will try to arrange it a little differently but who can tell. What is the last possible date that I should meet you assuming that we will be to-gether for 4 or 5 days. About the 22nd I reckoned.

     What I had in mind was calling Miss what's her name, (I have her address &) immediatly [sic] I find when I am leaving*, have her call you and make us some reservations. When I arrive I could give her another buzz and when I found out where to go I would go there and find you waiting for me. That would be VERY nice I think. Of course I don't know how long it will take you to make arrangements or how long it would take you to gt there or any thing else for sure. One think [sic] I am certain of, I don't want any one else around so that I will have to make lame excuses to get away or else be down right rude. I guess maby you feel like wise. Can you make your arrangements on the spur of the moment or will it take some time? As soon as I get to S.A. I am going to bite them for a week off to go to Chi and see you and then come back for disposition. Maby that will work. I know it will if I happen to talk to the right man. If I find I can't get out until about the 25th or so I will get to Chi about the 5th or 6th.

     I shall break down and tell you how come I was watching those two girls that day. There are three kinds of females here. (a) workers, (b) constant visitors, (c) strangers. The strangers are by far the least in number, in fact there are only two or 3 in this section each day and they are always looking at or for the signs that are numberous here. The other two kinds know where they are going and proceed thereto with out delay. Simple isn't it? I guess I have the loose ends caught up any way. You speak of that 'weak kneed' feeling having gone away. That is very good and I can say the same but I can also add that the desire is here stronger than ever.  All my love

* also when I will arrive

March 1944

Howard wrote Margaret on March 23, 1944.  I have no letters from him from December until March.

McCloskey General Hospital
Temple, Texas

My Darling,

     I got your letter today and I will answer it at once. There are a couple of questions that you did not answer. Honey child you perhaps fail to understand first how important these little items are to me just now. I am really a short timer here maby. You see I may get out of here any day and I may be here for quite a while but I've got to assume that I will be out any day. In order that not an hour will be lost when I do get away I want to be all set. Now I realize that it will be kind of tough going from your end but I am counting on you. Just rest your mind about a vacation next winter. If I'm still in the Army. I'll get off about whenever I want to and if I'm not I'll be there anyhow. Don't talk about work to me my love. I have been overseas for 25 months and in hospital for three months or so - remember? If I get discharged my vacation will be for many, many days maby a year even. See if you can manage some place other than Chicago. It is too large and we can't stay in the hotel room all the time. Whenever it can be managed tho. Honest to God having the though of you in my arms drives me mad. What a [ ] or [ ] is quite amusing (?). Now tell me, can I reach you by phone in case I want to find you right quickly - how are you fixed for fund? scratched out: if we are not close enough together to discuss money then ] we should be close enough to-gether now to discuss money by now. If I get a month's furlough I am ready and willing to spend any part of five hundred fish. Money has no value at a time like this. Now altho' it is of no importance to me I would like to know how the domestic situation is. Can I call without your being sent to bed? from the American Red Cross. Wonderful things beds?

I have no further reports on my condition but I am being test for everything almost. If nothing expect to be discharged though. Put your mind on your work my love and help me get organized. You seem to imply that a spring vacation looks favorable but implications are not sufficient - in this case.  never forget my love that I have an idea however faint of whar you are up against.

                                                      All my love ALL ways,


I don't have any stamps.

In the next letter postmarked March 29, 1944, Howard enclosed a small photo with two pictures.  On the back it says Flinders Street Station, Melbourne, Vic. The initials "F.R. are on the the right side.The picture on the left is of a person perhaps in uniform outside a building, the picture on the right is of a car in the foreground perhaps next to a street.

McCloskey General Hospital
temple, Texas

My darling Margaret,

I got a lot of mail from [scratched out: people] overseas yesterday. I expect that this will clean up my back correspondence, at least I trust so. It is becoming more and more established each day that I will be discharged. This makes me feel badly but I guess I'll live. If and when I get out I will [scratched out: be able] give Major Riggs a call and we will be able to spend a little time together. Of course I will be able to come thru Chicago.  Make your plans accordingly to stay for a few days anyhow. If I get discharged right quick I'll go home for a few days but that won't happen. I rather think they will keep me around for a few weeks probably. Take from one your old letters that you are an almost perfect 36. You shouldn't tell me those things. You speak of our love or attraction for each other. I'll guarantee you that you are the only little chick that ever satisfied me completely. Great stuff. Try to fix it so that you can stay at least a week.
     A little matter for your information -- you have no doubt read in the papers that a good many cases being returned are neuropsychopathic or psychoneurosis cases. In a lot of cases these guys have to be locked up for a while. A soldier could be locked up and still be writing home all the time that he is ok. It would be embarrassing to both parties if  company would come under those circumstances. I am not one of those but it could be you know. What I want to impress on you is to never never visit a hospital without an invitation. The visiting hours here are 2-4 and 6-8. I'll be glad to receive your pal when she comes on her inspection program for that's what it is). She's liable to be surprised because this whole wing of the hospital I am in is composed of psycho wards. It seems that under the army medical system any normal case is automatically a case neuropsychosis. I don't know when I'll see you but I can't wait.

                                                                                            Love much,


February 1944

January 1944

December 1943

Howard wrote Margaret a letter dated December 12, 1943

S/sgt Mccormick 14003792

My darling Margaret,

   It has been some days since I wrote to you. Your beautiful cheeses arrived safely. Pretty potent they were too. Things are much the same. They have taken a little different turn of late but not much. (I have no typewriter available so  you will have to decypher [sic] this as best you can. Your pictures came and they were lovely. this writing by hand is real work for me. I'll bet I haven't written much but my initials for nearly three years. My Christmas presents are arriving regularly. I got a box of very potent cigars the other day from Reba (one [ ]). I'll smoke them if it kills me. This is just too much.

November 1943

October 1943

September 1943

Monday, November 16, 2015

Brisbane, August 1943

Howard wrote on August 9:

My Darling

     Status unchanged. I have gotten three or four of your letters with my new company number on them. The postal system is vastly improved over what it was a year ago. This meets with my approval.
     The days are getting a little longer and warmer now, thank the Lord. It was really rugged at first. I've been here long enough now so that all that was once backward is now right. Even the people walk on the left side of the street here. I supposed that when I get home it will take me just about as long to get oriented as it did here. One of the boys got a letter from some guy who went home. He wrote that he felt like a foreigner back there. The people drove on the wrong side of the raod and most of all the money was no good. I can understand that because altho' a pound is worth about $3.25 here we spend them like dollars.
     Another one of our boys got himself a wife yesterday. Marriage here is now commonplace. In fact the next generation is coming along.
                                                                           All my Love,


Saturday, November 14, 2015

Brisbane, July 1943

Howard returned to Australia in mid-1943.  He was within APO 923, which was Brisbane.

My Darling Margaret,

     I'm afraid that it has been too long since I have written you but I have been moving around the country a good bit of late and I wanted to have a permanent address to give you when I did write. Even now I do not think that this one will be permanent.  I hope to make one more move.
     I guess that I told you that I am back on the mainland. After the last year or so this is rally a country club existence. I even get Cocoa [sic] Colas frequently. Ice cream too. The movies here are later than those we saw before but I can put up with that I guess. This is a pretty nice company I am in now altho' all companies seem to be more or less alike.
     As soon as I came here I got me a furlough and I went where I wanted to this time and had me a time for sure. I will tell you all about it when I see you. This place I went to had more civilians than soldiers and you can guess that this alone was worth the price of admission. I got me some film for my camera while I was away and Ruth sent me a roll of Kodachrome too so I have some for now at least. There are some restrictions on taking pictures here so I can't get too many that I feel are suitable.
     I have gotten some mail since I shifted bases and no doubt I will be getting more - I hope. I can't think of any burning questions that you asked me that I can answer right now. All I can think of right now is how much I miss you. I got a wire from you too. They have a very nice custom in this company and that is that someone that is going where it is available gets a box or two of fruit most every day. It is paid for out of the company fund and I think it is one of the nicest things that I have run across for many a long day. Some day when I get some time that I think that I can spare I will tell you about the theater situation in this country. Right now I will just say that I need you more than somewhat and wouldn't it be just dandy - - - - -
                                                                              Lots of love


He wrote on July 26,

Dearest Margaret,

     I have several letters and a [ ] from you. You are doing much better in the correspondence section than I am. I don't know. I seem to have lost interest in writing to everyone except you. Some of my correspondents are doubtless wondering what kind of flowers they have over here, but I'll get back in the groove after awhile. This will have to be just a note and I will say that I am as well as ever in spite of the chow here. Food comes and goes and right now it is on the debit side of the ledger. One thing in the army that an enlisted man can raise hell about and get away with is the condition of the mess. The officers do not seem to know about it or they would do something about it.
     Maby I'll break down and tell them. Oh well! some times things are bad and then all of a suddent they get worse. Actually I am enjoying myself here a good bit. The work is not to the word escapes me, hard will do, and we lead a kind of country club life. I seem to have quit drinking. I don't know why because elbow bending is one form of exercise that I have always approved of.

                                                                                          Lots of love,

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

New Guinea, June 1943

Jun 5, 1943

My Darling:

     My correspondence has overcome me. A lot of little short notes now and then I will start over again when I get more time. Your last was 10 May and I got that three part letter you wrote before that. I am still quite well and my duties are not too onerous. You are having a bad time with the film proposition but keep trying. That brother of yours seems to be a pretty good bet.
     Things have not changed a whole lot around here and we are still doing our bit in the same way as ever. I hope that the seeds get here before too long. I feel the need of a little gardening to keep my mind off one thing and another. I will try to get a more complete letter off to  you without too much delay so if I want to get the others 29 written I had better stop.

                                                                     All my love,

Later in the month, he was moved to the 1912th Q.M. Co., APO 923, which was Brisbane.

My Darling Margaret,

     I have been moving around some of late and am now in the 1912th Q.M. Co. APO 923.  I did not write for some time on this account but will perhaps catch up. I have gotten quite a lot of mail from you since I last wrote to you including the letter with the clippings in it. This address will probably catch me for a while but I expect I will go a little further before I stop. I am out of typewriters just now so if you can read this you are seeing all right. I would like to tell you of my [  ] but [  ]. Suffice it to say that [ ].

                                                    All my love, Howard