Monday, September 24, 2018

Military Monday - Letters from Henry part 13

The next few letters are about everyday things.  Henry asks about the harvest and gives Arthur some advice about school.  Remember, Arthur was the youngest of his siblings and would be  twelve years old in 1918.

Arthur Steinbrecher (1906-1989)

France Sept. 5, 1918
Dear Parents & Arthur,
How is the world using you all by this time!
No doubt you will be going to school by the time this letter reaches you. If you study real hard you will soon finish the country school and then you can go to high school and study for some professor. How would you like that.
Do you have any melons this year? If you do don’t forget to eat some for me. And also pumpkin pie. What ever you do don’t over eat for it might make you sick.
I suppose you have threshed the grain by this time and had a good yield.
This pen is getting stubby the ink don’t want to feed at all. I wrote a letter to Rosa and told her if she did not need the money that Dad has from me to let Father use it another year.
But if she needs it I suppose it belongs to her for she comes first in that.
How is Grandmother by this time same as always I suppose.
News is getting scarse with me whatever you do, don’t eat too much chicken for thanksgiving dinner. Will quit for this time. With love and best wishes to all,

He mentions his sister Rosa.  She was 2 years younger than he was and had been married for 8 years to Fred McQuillin.   All I could find was a picture of her in 1980 age 88.

Rosa Steinbrecher McQuillin (1892-1980)

France Sept 8 1918
Dear Parents
Sunday noon just had dinner and so you know I am all set till this evening.
Only wish I could enjoy one of those real home cooked meals again for they sure would hit the spot. I see in the paper that joy riding on Sunday with the auto’s was to stop in order to save gasoline for the army trucks here in France.
So I suppose you will have to ride your bicycle instead.
What are you doing to pass all of your time?
Bet you are working like a real man, digging spuds, cutting corn, and helping the neighbors thresh.
I am busy resting for the present but this is about to an end again and then it will be a different story. For my wound is nearly healed up.
Have a little sore throat and they wanted to remove my tonsils, but I will keep them a little longer, unless they trouble me too much then out they come.
I am going to an entertainment this afternoon at one of the wards, have to go and spend some of the time for it is too lonesome staying in the town all day long.
How is Rosa and her children getting on this summer? Bet they are growing like a weed, and Fred is he ale to keep working all time. The first time you see them don’t forget to say hello for me.
With love and best wishes,

France Sept. 12, 1918
Dear Parents & Arthur
Hope you are all well and happy the same as usual, only you might be a little more busy now then you have been for several months. for it is about time for the school to open again so it is dear old school days once more, how do like the walk to school each morning and back in the evening? I bet you don’t walk but ride your bicycle.
Hope you have a real good teacher and all mind him well for you know what usually happens to the naughty schollars they have to do extra study after school hours and that is not very nice.
How is the Ford doing by this time, and has Father learned to drive it yet? I bet he is a real speedster.
How do you go to church on Sunday for I see in the papers they want the people to stop using their motor on Sunday to save gasoline.
How is the weather this time of the year around there? Hot enough to make anyone loke for a shade tree I suppose it is not so hot here any more. Rained nearly all nght. Last evening we were at the movies at the Red Cross and when the pictures were about half finished the electric current went of and we had to go back without seeing it all. So you see they put one over us that time.
With love and best wishes,

Of course, the letters are all censored (note the stamp on the bottom corner of the envelope), so there isn't a lot of details about where the troops are.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Military Monday - Letters from Henry part 12

Henry is still lonely - he states he is the only one of his company there - but then mentions that he is in the hospital with a shrapnel wound to his elbow!  Remember back in August of 1918 he mentioned that he was having a "vacation" with a new company.  Apparently he didn't want his parents to worry that he had been wounded.

France Aug 30 1918
Dear Parents,
Hoping this will find you all well and happy the same as I am at present. Have you heard from Clara and Lorenz lately. By the papers I see that he will soon get a chance to be in it to.
I have not got any more of my mail for about two months and don’t expect to get any till I am out of the hospital.
Think I will be leaving next week for my elbow is all healed up again it was only a small shrapnel wound at the left elbow and in a few days I will be good as ever.
It is quite lonesome here I am the only one from our company. Been away rom the company since three weeks Wednesday. How would you lik to have one of these little jack ass and a two wheel cart the have here? Give my best wishes to all, With Love, Henry
Pvt. Henry Steinbrecher .
Co.B 38th Inf
A P.O. 740
American E.F.

Here is a telegram dated September 27 informing his parents that he had been wounded on August 7.
Clearly communications 100 years ago were not nearly as rapid as today.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Military Monday - Letters from Henry part 11

Henry is still feeling a little homesick.  He wants to receive more mail but thinks it is getting lost.  He is able to keep up on news from home in the Army newspaper.

Lorenz Steinbrecher (1898-1968)

He asks about his younger brother Lorenz Steinbrecher who had moved to Hammond Indiana to find work.

France Aug 24, 1918
Dear Parents,
Trusting this will find you all in the very best of health the same as it leaves me. Come to think about it this is Clara’s birthday, also Pa and Will had theirs a short time ago. It may be a little late but better late then not at all.
I wish them all many more happy birthdays and if I am not mistaken, Mother’s will be sometime this month. And for my birthday you can send me a keg of good beer with plenty of ice.
Have you threshed any of the grain this summer? How are the crops. I see by the paper that they were better than last year. We have been getting a paper every day here at this place. They are printed especially for the A.E.F. here in this country but I been at places where we could not get any for several weeks.
There is usually a little in it every day about the U.S.A. I don’t know what I will do if my mail ever find me and I afraid I will have to take seeral days off to read it all.
One of the men here got 75 letters all at one time going some isn’t it. Have not been able to see Dan. Wrote him a letter long time ago but have not received an ans. yet. Met a man from the same company he is in and he told me that the last time he saw him a few weeks ago. Dan all O.K. feeling fine.
Have you heard from Lorenz lately is he still at Hammond at the R.Y. office?
I see by the papers it will soon get him for if I remember right he is 20 years next month.
When you see Wills’ give them my best wishes and any of the others also. Would like to write them each a letter, but that is impossible so they will have to be satisfied without. I want you to be a real good boy and mind your teacher. You can take Rosa to the fair for your girl this year, she will show you a good time.

With love and Best Wishes, 

He remembers that it was his sister Clara's birthday.  Clara was born August 24, 1895 and married William Stromberger in 1914.

William and Clara Steinbrecher Stromberger 1914

He also mentions taking Rosa to the fair - this was probably the Fulton County Ohio fair that was celebrating its 50th anniversary in 1918.