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Calhoun Batts to Mother, 1917

NEW BERN BOY IS WITH EXPEDITION ON FRENCH SOIL--Calhoun Batts Doing His Bit for Uncle Sam—Writes Letter to Mother.--Says Chances are Slim of Living Through War.

Calhoun Batts, son of Mr. and Mrs. J.L. Batts of this city and who some months ago joined the U.S. army and went to France for active service is now in that country with the American expeditionary force and is doing his bit for the U.S.A.

Young Batts has written an interesting letter to his mother in which he tells of existing conditions and this is being published below:

“Dear Mother:--I will drop you a few lines to let you hear from me. This leaves me well and enjoying life and truly hope you the same. Mother I would have written sooner, but have not had an opportunity. Guess you will excuse me this time. Mother, I received your letter of June 15th last week, and was real glad to hear from you all. Wish you would write more often than you do, as I am always glad to hear from home. You need not hesitate because you don’t get an answer, for I don’t have much time to write, but I will write as often as I can.

Mother, I could tell you lots of things, but the censor will not permit it. I suppose you know that all of our mail is censored now, and will be until we leave France, which I do not think will happen any time soon.

Mother, please don’t dispose of any of my clothes as I will need them when I come home. This is like counting chickens before they are hatched. But I am praying that I will get back some time in the near future.

Mother, I am not going to take any chances of sending my money home from here. I am going to deposit it with the paymaster. I thing [think] that is safer than sending it home, and besides I will get four per cent interest on it. I can put away at least $25 a month. So you see I will have quite a little sum when I get my discharge, if I ever do.

Well, I guess you all have moved to your new home. Hope you like it, and wish I could be with you. But it is impossible at this time. But I hope I can live through this war and be with you all again, although chances look slim at present—but time will prove all things, and I am trusting in the Lord to take me through safely, and I know He will if I will only trust in Him. Mother I am praying for you every day, and I want you to pray for me, as I think prayer is the only thing that can bring us together again. We will pray that if we can’t meet on this earth again that we may be able to meet in the other world, where there are no troubles and trials.

Mother, tell Ethel I will answer her letter some other time, as it is getting dark and we are not allowed any lights. Give my best regards to all of the boys and girls. Tell Mr. and Mrs. Rogers I wish them much success in their new store. Mother, tell Mr. Trent I thank him very much for the cigarettes he sent me, although I have never received them. I can’t see where they went unless they got lost at Fort Screven. Tell him I would have written him, but I have forgotten his address, and I wish you would send it to me the next time you write. I also want Lena’s and Carrie’s address in Chicago, if you have it. You write them and tell them to drop me a few lines.

Well as news is scarce I will close[,] answer soon. From your loving son, Calhoun Batts, Co. F, 28th Infantry, via New York, A.E.F.”

The Semi-Weekly Sun Journal, Saturday, October 6, 1917, p. 4, c. 7

 


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Updated: November 20, 2014.