December 31, 2010

Ammasa Gunter in World War I - Part 2


Northwest-News, Napoleon, Ohio, April 4, 1918, p. 8
From Our Boys in France
"Somewhere in France
Feb. 26, 1918
Dear Brother,
I will drop you a few lines this evening to let you know that I am O.K. and hope this will find you folks the same.  I can almost imagine how anxious you have been waiting for a reply from me, but you will have to forgive me for circumstances would not permit me ot write when I would have liked to, but we were all in the same fix so hereafter don't be disappointed when you don't hear from me so often as you did sometime back.  But I think I can at least let you hear enough so that you will not forget me. 
I have been having a little trouble with my stomach the last few days, but am feeling better now.  A couple of nights ago I sure was on the trot, doing that turkey trot, I should have said for that was the cause of it.  We had turkey the other day for dinner, some that was left over from Thanksgiving - cold storage - it didn't taste bad, but oh, how it made us run the next day.  Had some of it today again, but I laid off. 
Well, old top, how is everybody around henpeck?  Still kicking, I reckon, those that are able to kick.  I suppose Spring has set in by now back in the old U.S.  I hope so, for they surely had a severe winter to put up with.  It is not cold here any more,k but hte weather has been a little unsettled in the past few days with a shower now and then. 
I am still with the Lieutenant and Beek with the Major.  Lieut. and I have a neat little room where we are now, good bed, stove and electric lights - sure is what you might call a furnished room.  There are French people in the same house, just a family of three and are very clever.  The lady talks a good bit to me every day, but I can only get a few words of it yet.  I can sling a few French words back at her.  It just suits her, for she thinks I am learning it fast. 
Lewis was down to see me tonight and we had a little chat by ourselves.  You tell his parents that he is well and happy and I am making him go to bed at half past eight every evening.  Also tell them that he is getting to be a hard guy and getting worser and worser.
Well, Brother, it is now time I should be in bed, thinking what a good time I am going to have tomorrow.  I want you to write often as you can and don't forget if you ever receive any of my money, keep tally of every bit you get and look after my farm the best you can.  Keep the tax paid on it whatever you do, for I can't lose it know when I just paid that big mortgage off.  Also keep the fence corners mowed out good and the rest will look after itself.  You can tell the carpenters not to start building that house yet.
How is daddy?  I wrote to him but won't look for an answer.  I will have to excuse him.  Tell all that I sent my best regards and warmest feelings and hope to see them on that side in the near future.
Your brother,
Amassa Gunter"

Northwest-News,  May 2, 1918, p. 1
From Somewhere In France - Letters from Henry County Boys Over There
"France, April 5, 1918
Dear Sister:
Received your letter so will answer; will have plenty of time as it has been raining today.  Very muddy around camp, but we got thru it any way.  Boots would be a very useful thing where we are now.  Sis, I have been in the trenches, but haven't seen the Kaiser yet.  You said you had mud at your place, but I know it isn't anything like we have here.  I never saw as much mud in my life.  Would soon dry up if it would stop raining for awhile.
I have been putting in pretty good time today writing letters.  Will have about half a dozen to send out all at once when I get done.  Well, suppose you are hard at work at your garden now-a-days.  Don't work too hard.  Will Perry grow sugar beets again or not?  Is he pretty well along with the work?  I reckon Davie will farm Dad's place again.  Who is staying with him now?  Heard he lost his cook.  Bib had quite a case of sickness.  Are you folks all well?  Please let me hear from Dadie.  Got a letter from Bertie Parritt; said she saw you and Perry and all was well. 
Well, sis, will close.  This leaves me feeling fine.  Hope it finds everybody well back there.  Tell all I sent my best regards.
Your brother,
Ammasa Gunter
Co. H, 166 Inf., A.E.F. via N.Y."

Northwest-News, Napoleon, Ohio,
May 9, 1918, p. 7
Letter from France
"France, April 15, 1918
Dear Father:
It has been a long time since I have written to you so I thought I would write again..  This leaves me feeling fine and dancy, and hope it will reach you the same.  Well, Dad, how are things over there in the Buckeye state and how are you getting along on the farm?  Suppose you are enjoying the good old spring again, as you had an awful severe winter.  We, over here, are having nice weather with a shower once in awhile, but it is not cold any more.  Can be comfortable out side in your shirt sleeves and has been that way for a month back.  The winter did not amount to very much as it only lasted a short period of time, and the coldest weather didn't get down to zero.  You might imagine it didn't affect the boys much when in swimming in the middle of March.
Dad, wish you could see this country; it would be the greatest sight you ever saw in all your life or any one else that hasn't been here.  We have been over quite a space of France since our landing over here., and our Chaplain said in a little speech he gave to us, "We have been going some."  There is no such thing as a frame building here; all are stone.  This Country is noted for having good roads, and plenty of good old stones to build them.  I have seen someo f the best pikes over here that I ever saw. 
By the way, I heard that Robert has answered the colors.  You don't have to worry one bit about either one of us, for Uncle Sam does the right thing for us all, and Robert is in one of the best things he ever was in, and I am glad I can say I have a brother helping our country, when we must all do our part to call it our grand old country for ever.
If it wasn't for the big hikes we make, I know you would join us too, if it has been fifty years ago since you was doing the same as I am now, and I believe that same old fighting spirit is there yet.  Well, Dad, I have been in the trenches.  I know what they look like.  Also heard some big guns and see plenty of excitement and interesting things pulled off quite often.  One don't get lonesome or homesick over here - none of us.  We are here for something else.  I am going to bring some of the Kaiser's ear home in my teeth, that is the way we all feel about it.
Well, Dad, I will close and await for an answer from you so get busy and answer.  I can read your handwriting very well.  Tell Malinta folks I sent my best regards.
Your son,
Ammasa Gunter
Co. H, 166 Inft. A.E.F. via N.Y."

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