Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Post #398 - June 23, 1944 Our Way Lay Thru Stratford-Upon-Avon, Which I Don’t Have to Tell You, is the Birthplace and Home of Shakespeare


23 June 44

Dearest Chippie,

No mail today, and because nothing much happened today, I expect this will be a “shortie” (unless I happen to get "wound up" on something or other). 

This morning, as I told you last night, I was supposed to make a trip with Lt. Toms. We were to start at nine o'clock. Eight o'clock found me all dolled up and ready to roll. I hung around the Orderly Room until Lt. Toms should call, or show up with a vehicle. At nine, he called to say there was a hitch in his plans, and that we would be delayed. It was 10:30 before I heard from him again. He came up to the Orderly Room to tell me that he had struck a snag—that the trip was cancelled for the time being. He promised, though, that we would make it within the next fifteen days. Needless to say, we were both very much let down. You see, Sweet, our way lay thru Stratford-Upon-Avon, which I don't have to tell you, is the birthplace and home of Shakespeare. One of our officers, Lt. Stultz, was there last week, and his enthusiasm for the loveliness of the "Shakespeare country,” and his description of the play he saw in the Memorial Theatre there, coupled with the fact that he loaned me a booklet describing the various things of interest to be found there; the life of Shakespeare; the origin and significance of the surrounding towns and hamlets, all made me want very much to visit the place. Lt. Toms, if anything, is fully as eager as I am to make the trip, and I'm sure he'll see to it that we manage it.

When I learned the trip was off, I changed back into my “working” clothes (my other O.D. uniform with field-jacket instead of blouse). The morning had been wasted preparing for the trip, waiting around, and changing clothes. Now it was lunch-time.

After lunch, I was called to the Finance Office to transcribe the pay-roll. Returning to the Orderly Room, I busied myself transcribing the payroll to the final copy (quadruplicate). This took the bulk of the afternoon.

This evening, the picture at the Base Theatre is Mae West in "Heats On "—one I don't care to see. So-o-o after I get near enough the bottom of this page to finish this in a dignified manner, I aim to grab some extra shut-eye that I missed out on last night on CQ. Look's like my letter to Mom will have to wait still another day.

My love to my niece's proud parents, and her grandmom.

I'm looking at the likenesses of my two adorable chippies smiling down at me from the shelf, and wishing very much that I could hold you both right now and show you (with motions) how very dear you are to me. Good night, my lovelies.

Your adoring dad and hubby

June 23, 1944

Dear Phil:

Well here I am again. It seems to me that every time I sit down to write a letter, there is always one headed for “Cpl. Phil Strongin.” 

I received your long letter of May 26th and I'm at a loss to explain it. First of all, there are five pages and on the fifth it ends in the middle of a word. There probably was another page, but I never got it. 

There was a paragraph in your letter that I can't seem to make head or tail out of. I shall quote it for you and I would appreciate it if you would send me an answer pronto with an explanation. You have aroused my curiosity no end. 

“If it weren't for the fear of being misunderstood, Dot, I would tell you of a curious experience, or rather an unprecedented and, seemingly, unwarranted emotion which was as definite as it was spontaneous, and as briefly experienced as it was inexplicable. This was back on Sansom Street, after I had known you but a few weeks. Almost, at the time, I could have sworn you were cognizant of the fleeting impulse—but lest I delude.... etc.” 

I needn’t tell you that I shall be on pins and needles till I hear from you. I couldn't sleep last night thinking about it. You needn’t think I won't understand, as the friendship between us is such, (I think) that you needn’t fear any misunderstanding on my part or vice versa. 

Now for some news on my doings. You probably received my letter written from Atlantic City telling you about our vacation. We really had a grand time and I won't waste your time by going through it all again. 

Snuff leaves tomorrow and I'm amazed because I seem to be incapable of any pain at the thought of his going. I have lived through this moment innumerable times—each time his deferment was up. Maybe this is a good thing, because at least I can smile for his last days here. I shall shed my tears when he leaves, and you, being such a good friend will probably get the end of them on letters. 

I really doubt it very much as you probably could use a broad shoulder to cry on yourself. 

Spoke to Evvie last night and she apologized for not being able to come and say “so long” to Snuff. After all, what with working and Goldie coming home from the hospital today. I can readily understand the situation. 

We have been spending these last two evenings home to give the relatives and friends an opportunities to say good-bye and good luck. “The war will be over soon and you'll be back home.” That's the usual wish for servicemen. 

I must apologize for the way my letter is scrambled. That just gives you a picture of my mental state. I seem to be utterly mixed up in everything I do. 

Hope to be able to send you some pictures of myself and the baby. Maybe before the war is over, huh? 

Again, I must say that the news over here has really lifted the spirits of everyone here at home. The Jap fleet is out of hiding and we are really giving them a beating. Why do you think they came out of hiding?—Because they heard my wonderful husband was going into the Navy and they knew he would find them and knock hell out of them. 

Enough of this nonsense and please let me hear from you soon. Please don't forget to let me know what you meant in your last letter. 

As ever, 


Dear Phil:

Just received a letter from Ev and she tells me she has a letter for me from you. All I can say Phil, you sure take your time answering a very thoughtful cousin (that's me.) Phil, if I had to wait a few months or so, it would still be worth the thrill I get when it finally comes. 

Phil, the news. I want to write about you probably heard from your beloved wife, Harry’s birth etc.; so you are so you see, Phil—my life at Belvoir isn't quite as eventful as yours. 

There is really no camp news, except that I expect to leave Belvoir by the time this letter gets to you. The shed-house rumors have it that we're going to Ft. Custer to get M.P. training. As you probably know it is the M.P. R.T.C. (M.P. Replacement Training Center) Looks like I'll follow in Eddie's footsteps. 

Phil, for some sentimental reason your mother wants me personally—to read your letter (to me) to her. 

As long as her dear heart desires it, so shall her wish be fulfilled. That event will take place today.—My freedom starts at 5 P.M. tonight, and expect to be home at 9 P.M. After getting Emma, your home will be the first stop. 

If Emma says it's a masterpiece of a letter, it must be. I really can't wait ’til I read it. Phil, I'll kiss your little one, and your mother, once for you and once for me—

PS. I'd kiss Ev for you, but maybe you wouldn’t like this and I'd hate to take chance hurting you. 

Your loving cousin, 

Page Missing
Begins with Page Two

you're about it, that she hasn't get answered my last letter.

My brief period of comparative inactivity will be ended tomorrow, 'cause I'll have to start compiling the Company History then. I'm hoping to make this one really worth-while. I have allowed myself five days for the job. It should be sufficient, even if I am sidetracked temporarily by other work.

Was reading the May “Esquire" when I chanced on a story by Milton Mazer, a doctor, Philadelphian, graduate of U. of P., now a lieutenant in the Medical Corps. It struck me he might be one of the Mazer boys who live across the driveway. On second thought, I'll send the clipping and his picture along. I'm curious.

I'm still waiting to hear from Lil. Has she recovered from her recent indisposition yet?

Does Jean ever write? How is Helen doing these days? What's new around the neighborhood—if any? How are the Frommers feeling these days? Is the punkin as fond of them as I am?

You said that Bob was singing at the Stork Club, but haven't told me anything since. I'd like to know how he's doing, what type of songs he is singing, to what accompaniment, etc. My love to the Liebermans next time you see them—and you still haven’t sent me their new address. Is "Link" still putting on weight? How are Barbara and Phyllis developing. I still don't believe Phyllis could possibly be prettier than "Bub."

You may tell Rae and Mickey for me that if they don't soon drop me a line, I'll change my mind about requesting them to send along some candy. (That oughta bring ’em around—don't you think?)

How is Paul behaving now that Stuart is the center of attraction? How often do Ben and Harry write? I haven't had an answer to my last letter to Limey, but am not surprised. He must be pretty busy these days.

How are Mom and Pop Paller getting along since he started on his new job? You must know, Chippie, how pleased I am that the cause for dissension between them has been eliminated.

Waiting to hear more about Diana Jean, Goldie, Harry, and company. Hope my letter to them was well-received.

Tell Dot her letter will follow soon. She has been kind in dropping me a line so frequently. Guess Snuff is really “in” this time. But I don't think it'll be too many months before he's home again. I don't have to ask you to keep in even closer touch with Dot, now that Snuff has gone, ’cause I know you will, anyway.

No questions about the punkin just a great big ache for her in my breast—And for you, too, my little—Chippie. 

Your Phil loves you both so very, very much.

Sunday, August 29, 2021

Post #397 - June 22, 1944 Don’t Worry, Honey, You Can Have Full Command When You Get Back and I Feel the Phoniest of Phony Prophets



June 21, 1944

Dearest One,

Before I get on with my letter I do want to say that I finally managed to get that package off to you by having my Dad mail it during his lunch hour. I also managed to get a letter off to Mike Nerenberg and asked him whether I should go out to their place or whether he would prefer to come here.

Today I hit a sort of Jackpot. This morning I received your v-mail of May 26th, and letters of June 7 and 8. This afternoon your letter of the 9th came through, along with a letter written the same day by Eddie.

No comment of yours of the 26th. Yours of the 7th, which contained word of the snapshots does require some comment. I beg to differ with you about my posture in that snap with the Britisher. It's the angle and not my posture. I felt ill when it was taken and naturally wouldn't look as well as normally. Which reminds me—I got unwell today—six days late. Boy I’d be scared stiff if you were home!

One piece shorts and skirt are just what the words imply. The top garment is a blouse and instead of having a "dress" bottom it is shorts. A skirt fits over it that it might be worn in the street.

Thanks again, baby, for sending off the money for a dress and shoes. I can assure you, as yesterday, that it will be spent as you suggest.

I guess you were wrong about Seymour. He definitely does not like the Navy, but then he hasn't 
been in long enough to know for sure.

I think I've explained about my wanting to work sufficiently to disregard any questions you pose in your letter of the 9th. I would think it was a measly $13 a week if it weren't for the fact that it is to be savings and nothing else. That kind of saving will get us someplace someday, even though it is a drawn out process. Don't worry, honey, you can have full command when you get back—I'll be tickled to turn the burden over to you.

When I said Adele didn't want to stop jumping rope—that's exactly what I meant. Whenever she is likes something you don't know how hard it is to get her away from it. She pounds the floor with one foot to imitate jumping rope.

I forgot to tell you that Mom bought herself a lovely gray and white polka dot two piece dressy dress for $10 from a lady in the neighborhood who sells dresses, It's very good-looking and something different for her. She also bought a greenish colored pinafore that is quite attractive. Mrs. Feldman got one and Mom liked it, so Betty got Mom one, too.

1. The weather continues, cool, pleasantly so and I like it very much. That's unusual for the first day of Spring, oops, I meant Summer. 

I bought Adele a walking dog toy today. I paid 90¢ wholesale (I hear it sells for more than double) and after ten minutes of play with it, Adele broke it. I pasted the foot, since it is made of some sort of plastic. She was crazy about the "dog" and made quite a fuss about it. She's in need of more toys to keep her occupied, things to put together and take apart and it's hell to find something worthwhile these days, When I stop working Sats. I'm going on a few long shopping tours to get all the little things I want for her and myself and that's when I'll get the dress and shoes.

I called Dot and Snuff this evening and learned that they returned from the shore yesterday. I think I am going out there tomorrow night for dinner direct from work, or else I won't have an opportunity to see Snuff for a long time to come.

June 22, 1944

As you may have noted, dearest, I did not find time to complete this missive. As I typed the last sentence, in walked Ethel, Al and Rae. Ethel had shopped and bought all Diana's necessities and they walked in with three large cartons that set Harry back exactly $33.49. Mickey and Rae bought Diana a lovely 100% wool pink, shawl with fringe, that is used as a carriage cover. Along with that was a silk pink bonnet. Ethel displayed all the things and then they opened a long box and brought out the great big doll they bought for Adele, which, Ethel told me, cost $6. Adele is crazy about her new doll, which has real eye lashes, eyes that go to sleep, real teeth and it even says Momma—or cries like a baby is more the correct description. The doll is almost as large as she, has a pink hat and coat on, an organdy dress and she (the doll) has the prettiest face I've seen on a doll. Adele is still too destructive to trust her with such an expensive item so I let her play with it while I'm watching. We nearly died laughing from Adele this morning. A young crippled boy lives across the street and was passing by early this morning. Adele, apparently, saw him and immediately copied his style of walking. We didn't know what she was doing until she said "boy" and pointed to him. Yep, honey, that's our offspring!

I spoke to Dot this evening and she tells me that she received a five page letter from you and that the last page must be missing, for the letter ends in the middle of a word and there is no signature. I couldn't make it out there this evening and I doubt if I'll be able to get out there at all to say so long to Snuff.

I haven't written much about our new niece nor of Goldie, Truth to tell. I've still to have a good look at her and I've spoken to Goldie very little til today. Goldie had a sort of relapse after having too much company on Sunday and I thought it better not to bother her. She walked today for the first time and said she didn't feel so good. She says she had quite a few stitches. She's been nursing the baby, but the baby has lost weight, so the doctor advised her to nurse and to get a formula for the baby. So, she's going to nurse and give the baby the bottle. Today the baby weighs 6 lbs, 9 oz. Most everyone thinks it looks like Harry. Diana is a long thin baby, according to those who have had a good look. Goldie is coming home tomorrow afternoon, so I guess I'll be kind of busy the next few days. The job of bathing Diana will probably be my lot and it should be interesting to bathe a new-born once again. G's doctor recommended a good baby doctor in the neighborhood, who has been examining the baby at the hospital. His name is Dr. Grossman and he is charging her $10 for the hospital visits. I understand he's a sort of specialist in his field so I think I'll have him take a look at Adele's legs and feet when he pays Goldie a visit. I'll probably have lots more to write about them this weekend.

I don't want to forget to tell you that I received two more of yours of the 11 and 13 June today. The mail is arriving regularly once again and I'm pleased to pieces about it. The new people sound swell and I'll make it my business to contact their relative here in Philly this weekend.

I'm glad you enjoyed yourself so well at their home. You might congratulate the new parents for me, dear.

I know I don't give you much in the way of war news, honey, though I have been watching the news more closely since the invasion. Dot tells me that she wrote you most of the latest and bestest news concerning what is thought of the war's end and I doubt if there is much to add. Cherbourg’s defenses are crumbling, the Navy is doing fine in the Pacific. That item about the 29th Inf. is food for conjecture, honey. God, I shudder when I think of it.

Today was just another work day for me and the weather was rather warm today. I'm so darn sleepy at the moment, honey, that I can't see straight, so help me god! There is one other thing I want to say. I told Harry and Goldie I would buy them the bathinette as a gift. However, Harry has already purchased it. I told Goldie I was delaying the giving of our gift only as long as it took for me to know that you know of your new status. Who knows, perhaps you have a suggestion as to a gift. I was planning on spending $10 and though it is quite a bit for me at this time I nevertheless want to gift them generously as they have gifted me. I shall wait to hear from you, Uncle Phil.

Well, honey, I'm just about writ out and with a closing kiss and hug and all the love I can squeeze in I am now!

Auntie Eve

22 June 1944

Dearest Darling,

Here I am again, for the second time today. The reason? I just received your rather breathless V-mail of 14th June advising me that I am now an uncle. —But is my face red! After my smug assumptions in this morning's letter (none of which were right), I feel the phoniest of phony prophets. The next time I guess something right, it will be the first time. I here and now forswear predictions of any kind. Naturally, I'm delighted at the arrival of the newest Strongin (watch us grow!), and I’m equally delighted that it is a sweet little girl rather than a rapscallion boy, Looks like it's up to Jack, all right, to provide the guy who will carry on the family name. However, I warn you now, my darlingest darling, that if Jack's offspring is also a girl, I will feel myself obliged to produce that elusive male myself. So, if I were you, I would either drop a Gloria a hint, or start painting the bassinette blue. Too bad Goldie's father doesn't approve of Diana Jean—it's such a pretty name! But perhaps he would agree to a compromise. Say "Dorie”—or "Doreen." Dorie would go well with "Jean,” but if they prefer "Doreen" they can change the middle nome to fit—say “June" or “Julia" or “Judith”—I think “Doreen June" is nice—and appropriate, too. But whatever Harry and Goldie decide on, it will be O.K. with uncle Phil. You needn't bother to convey my congratulations—I’ll attend that little matter myself. Which reminds me, dear, you forgot to congratulate me, uncle Phil, the “patriarch” of our branch of the Strongin clan. Oh—how could you? And you were always so thoughtful about such things! I was always the one to forget the necessary amenities, yet here am I saying "congratulations, Aunt Evelyn,” while no one thinks to congratulate me!

Tonight I am CQ and have the time to get off a letter to H. + G., and perhaps Mom.

Tomorrow morning I am accompanying Lt. Toms on a three-day trip. I'll write if I get the chance, but don't count on it. At any rate, I'll tell you all about it when I get back.

But if I’m to get off those other letters, I'd better conclude this right here. But not before I say yet again "I love you, my Chippie." A kiss and hug for my littler, but equally dear Chippie, your daughter and mine, Adele Bara.

Yours ever-lovingly

June 22, 1944

Dear Phil,

Everytime I read one of your letters I felt ashamed of myself for not doing any writing. But you know how it is, I very seldom do any writing, and since Dot does all the writing, and by the way, so well, I could never find anything to say.

Now that I am going into the service most of the news will be as new to you as to Dot. From now on I expect to do a little more corresponding to those I know and care for. It may seem a little odd since I never even put in a line or two in all the letters that Dot has sent to you, as I said before it would be simple to say what Dot has already written. I started this letter on a rough sheet and was going to have Dot type it out for me. I decided to start right now as it was a good a time as ever.

Dot was saying that you should feel flattered, because this is the third letter I’ve written in the last 3 years and that all took place in the last 3 days.

I hope my letter writing will progress as time goes by, because when I go to Boot Camp I won’t have my little woman doing my work for me. Consequently my handwriting will have to become a little more legible.

Until I get to Camp and you receive my next letter, be well and for God’s sake stay in England.

As ever the one and only

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Post #396 - June 20, 21, 1944 I Expect to Hear that Dennis Jay Strongin (What a Monicker!) was Born on 14th June


20 June 1944

My Dearest,

Looks like I'm slipping, don't it? In my correspondence, I mean. Instead of my usual letter-a-day, I've been falling into the habit of writing every other day. This isn't as I would have it, sweet, and I’m sure you much prefer that I write every day. Sometimes, though, in order to do so, it would mean sacrificing a whole evening in town, and i'm most reluctant to do so, now that I've made some friends there. Really, sweet, my letters, if I wrote daily, would be very dull indeed. Because this would preclude my "going out” and thus deprive me of the means, the material for a readable letter, I’m sure you will agree, Chippie, that you gain by this arrangement, in the end. The alternative means that by the time I could get a letter off to you in the evening, Klein will have left. Since I must depend on him for transportation, I must either go with him, or spend the rest of the evening wondering what in hell to do with myself. However, in spite of all this, and because I am as anxious to write daily as you must be to receive a daily letter, I will continue to make every effort to write every day. Moreover, darling, I don't expect to go to town more than twice a week, and most weeks I'll go only once. I tell you all this, Chippie, so that you won't chafe at a delay of a day or two in receiving my mail. It is four days, now, since I've heard from you and i'm wondering if there'll be anything for me today,

Last night, as you must have gathered, I went out again. It had been a very nondescript day, with nothing much happening to break the monotony. There was no mail to answer, it was a lovely afternoon, and I was in the mood for a movie. There were two pictures to choose from. "Heavenly Body" and "Hers to Hold". I was in a quandary, ’cause I hadn’t seen either and wanted to see both. Klein was indifferent. I finally decided that I'd rather see Deanna Durbin than Hedy Lamarr. After all—Deanna also sings! Fortunately, it was a happy choice. Deanna is as lovely in this one as I’ve ever seen her, with the possible exception of her role in "His Butler's Sister.” Her singing, always thrilling, must, nevertheless, take second place to the charm of her as she plays the starry-eyed young thing romantically and unashamedly in love for the first time The tenderness she displays in the “clinches” makes Joseph Cotten, a pretty good actor in his own right, appear lifeless and insipid by comparison. I thought he was terribly miscast as the dashing young lover. Off-hand, I can think of a dozen guys who could have played the part more convincingly. The story, itself, is hackneyed with constant repetition. Deanna Durbin proves her true worth and stature as an actress by taking these two great handicaps (leading man, story) in her stride. She makes the picture a good one by the sheer power of her personality. To my mind, she is one of Hollywood's finest actresses, in the histrionic sense of the word. Add to this the fact that she owns the best singing voice of all the stars, and the added fact that she is undoubtedly among the prettiest, and you begin to understand why I'd rather watch her perform than anyone even Hedy Lamarr).

After the show, we went to see the Woolfs. Evelyn is still at the Nursing Home and doing nicely, as is her son, whom they have decided to name Nigel Keith; (over the objections of Klein and myself—imagine!). Bert and Rita were expecting us, and the table had already been laid. We dined sumptuously (as the books say) on fish most excellently prepared by Rita. To “go with” there was pickle relish, french fries, tomatoes, b + b, coffee. By the time we finished eating, and I had helped Rita with the dishes (guess I shouldn't have mentioned that—it may give you an idea) and examined some of the pictures of you and Adele, which I remembered to bring along this time, it was time for us to leave. Rita exclaimed appropriately over the “beautiful baby;” she thought my wife was very nice, too. (Little does she know!) Bert, always the comedian, glanced briefly at the snaps and placed them back on the table, looking exaggeratedly bored. When he volunteered no comment, I said well?" He made a show of being startled out of his lethargy. "Oh” he deprecated, "what do I care about other people's kids." I could have killed him, even though I knew he was teasing me.

After he had invited us to the "bris", which is either tomorrow on the next day (he hasn’t decided yet), we said our "cheerios" and took off.

Klein entertained with his usual goofy brand of singing all the way back to camp— and so to bed.

—Which just about completes this particular letter.

So-long for now, Baby mine. I'm expecting the package containing the pictures any day now. Hope it’s today.

A fond kiss for you, darling. The same for the punkin. My love to all.

Your Phil
adores you.

21 June 144 


I've just finished reading your two letters of 8-9, 10-11 June and your V-mail of the 15th. To boot, I received the package containing the pictures, the box of Peanut Chews, and the Bond's Cookies. For the past four days now, I've been glum ’cause I hadn’t received anything in the mail. Yesterday there were four mail-bags full of packages and mail for the company. Imagine how I fell, when, for me, there wasn't even a V-mail! Today, though, made up in full measure for my disappointments of the last few days. I'm sitting on top of the world again, and feel so good, that were you and the punkin here, I’d put away the candy and the cookies and eat you instead. Truly, sweet, you both look good enough to eat. Right now, the picture sits on the shelf over my bunk, and I'm having to exert real will-power in order to keep my eyes off you long enough to get this letter written. The package arrived in perfect condition, even though you had piled everything on top of the cookies, and they were slightly mashed up as a result, I've already sampled the Peanut Chews and Cookies, and they were just as good as I thought they would be.

To keep you up-to-date on my doings, Chippie, I'll say a few words about what I've been up to since I wrote yesterday (and I do mean a very few words.)

Last night, having nothing better to do, I grabbed a nap between 6 and 8:30. Then I rode down to the theatre to see Kay Kyser and his gang in "Around the World. It is a very short musical, but what there is of it is pretty good entertainment. After a bite at the Snack Bar, back to barracks and to bed.

I was fairly busy all day, today - and late in the afternoon the mail arrived. I was in the middle of typing a company notice, when your three letters were handed to me. I stuck them in my pocket until I should finish the notice, but so eager was I to get at the reading of them, that I couldn't concentrate on what I was doing-—and screwed it up. Whereupon I said to hell with it, opened your letters, and read them. Then, having curbed my impatience, I proceeded to put fresh paper in the typewriter and started over again. When I finished, it was just 5 clock, so I gathered up pictures, candy, cookies, and letters, and made for the hut. Very slowly, then; relishing each word, I re-read the letters. Then, I looked long and earnestly at the pictures. Suddenly, I was terrible homesick. When that happens, I know only one remedy—I went to sleep. When I awoke an hour and a half later, the ache was gone, and I could once more bear the thought of not seeing you for some months yet. Immediately afterward, I commenced this. Now, let's see what comment your letters call forth. First, though, I guess you would want to know how I liked the pictures. In a sentence, they are up to my fondest expectations, and I can't thank you enough for them.

I'm so glad, Chippie, that my mail started coming through to you so soon after D-Day. Hope it's never held up again for the duration, but I expect it will be. Next time, though, you'll know the whys and wherefores of it, and will be more reconciled to the delay.

No, sweet, we haven't moved yet, but it is not without the realm of possibility that we'll be crossing the channel one of these days. No one knows, of course, whether we will or not, but, it is a possibility. I'm not worrying about it, though, Baby, and you shouldn't either. I told you long before I came overseas how the company would operate, and you should remember enough about tl to keep you re-assured, wherever we are sent. Believe me, darling, you need never suffer a moment's anxiety for my welfare.

Sorry you couldn't see your way clear to using that ten bucks, as I suggested, but, under the circumstances prevailing at the time, I agree that you couldn't very well do otherwise than postpone that “night out." However, I don't see why the opportunity shouldn't present itself soon—long before I could possibly join you. Please keep it in mind, Baby, and avail yourself of the first favorable opportunity. When I come home, and can join you, I'll find another ten dollars someplace. So just leave me out of your calculations in this matter. Fershtay?

Happy to learn that you finally managed to snare a good pair of shoes for the punkin. That leaves you exactly $16.50 for a dress. I figure you ought to be able to get something pretty nice for that. I remember a time when you could get two very nice dresses for that kind of money.

Nice of you, Honey, to remember to tell me what you are wearing now that you are “dressing up" again Didn't you give the “soldier suit" to Ruth a long time ago? And I thought you had discarded the “black net," too. Both were favorites of mine - but what wasn’t, for that matter? Do you wear a hat? I don't suppose you do.

Glad you find your work easy, Chippie, and that Mr. Bellet is so easy-going. True enough, Sweet, your mention of riding down to work with Mr. Bellet's son made me squirm inwardly (that's how bad I am), but I'm not holding any brief with you for mentioning it. The fault lies entirely with me, and I'll never stop being ashamed of my unreasoning jealousy.

22 June 144 

Just couldn't finish this by lights out last night, Chippie, so I'll continue this morning where I left off:

I don't think you're a “jerk", Sweet, because you gave Mrs. Hahn a break by helping her out when she needed you so badly. Especially if, as you claim, you don't feel "half as tired” after a day at the office, as you did formerly after a day at home. As to that, I suspect you're smearing it on a bit for my benefit. One thing I am happy about, in connection with your working. The days will go much faster for you, now that you have an added interest to keep you occupied thru the day. You'll have a lot less time to think of me—and that is good. Don't forget that 5 o'clock is mine, though!

How did your Mom take it when Seymour finally left for Camp Perry ?

Your letter of 10-11 June advises me that your grandmother is in a bad way again. Somehow, I can't feel properly empathetic; nor am I hypocrite enough to express a sorrow I do not feel. Of course, it would be nothing less than inhuman to refuse her her wish to see Adele again. It proves, too, that she is not entirely heartless.

Your remark to the effect that you are keeping up with the news makes me wonder if Mom still tunes in as fait fully as she used to to Mr. Fleischer.

The V-mail of the 13th conveys the news that Goldie was finally getting the labor pains. The suspense must have been terrific. I expect to hear that Dennis Jay Strongin, (what a monicker!) was born 14th June, between 2 and 3 in the afternoon. I'll also lay a little bet that Harry will drive you all crazy at about that time.

Well, Chippie, that just about covers your three letters, except for your sweet closing paragraphs. To them, I can only say that your honeyed words are a soothing balm for the aching loneliness that is always with me. My heart leaps to instant and eager response to each endearment, and echoes my equally fervent love for you, my dearly beloved. Never will I aspire to a greater joy than the one I await now with the greatest patience I can muster—that of holding you once more close to the heart that beats mainly for your sweet sake. My love to our daughter, who, as time goes by, lays increasing claim to that same heart. My love to all—and don't forget to include the newcomer, my first and only nephew, the inimitable Dennis Jay (can't get over that name!) 

Your Phil

June 21, 1944

Dear Phil:

How are you? I am writing to you from Atlantic City and I’m going to stay here all summer. I came here the 17th and I’m staying with Mrs. Cohen again. We came down by car and the ride was wonderful. The weather here is beautiful and I love it here. I’m going home in July for a few days since Seymour is expected home some time that month. That’s all the news so I’ll end my letter here.

Love & Kisses (45)

Post #395 - June 19, 1944 Most People Didn’t Get Too Excited, Wondering How High the Price Would Be and Who Would Pay with His Life and A Letter from Brother Seymour


June 19, 1944

Dearest Hubby,

I meant to write this letter yesterday, as you will note by the date line. However, today is the 20th and it is just getting written. I have a lot to say (for a change) and want to get started right at the beginning.

I didn't get an opportunity to describe the Fathers Day dinner—did I? Well, first I want to say a word about my mother and daddy. They were here for the dinner and both of them looked fine. My mother wore the dress we bought her shortly before Adele was born (I wonder if you remember how pretty it is?) and white shoes. My dad wore a white sports shirt, the blue slacks I bought him for Father's Day and brown and white sports shoes. I don't think I remember my folks looking as well as they did that day in a long time.

Al's brother Ben who was also supposed to attend didn't show up. As it was the following people were seated about the table: Mr. & Mrs, Silver, Murray Silver, My mother and dad, Al and Ethel and Paul, Harry, Mom and myself. We had a lovely dinner consisting of the following: grapefruit with strawberry jelly centers, chopped liver on lettuce leaves, veg. soup, roasted meat and chicken, peas and carrots pickles, tomatoes, cole slaw, mashed potatoes, fruit salad, all sorts of soda, brandy and whiskey. Sounds good, doesn't it - and it was! After dinner, we sat a short while and then the Silvers departed. Ethel, Al and Paul left a short while later. Al was telling Harry and me that Stuart and Paul each have 
$1000 bonds. It seems like everyone you talk to has thousands these days. Al mentioned that they spelled Stuart's name "Stewart" on his birth certificate and it's too late to do anything about it.

Monday morning I arose feeling spry, though Adele had gotten me up more than eight times the previous night. I cleaned the entire house (light dusting, etc. and was finished at 10. I took Adele for a walk and met up with the mailman, who had a stack of mail for widdle me - goody, goody! Your letter to Phil, along with the one for me dated May 16 were piperoos and you needn't feel badly about not writing a special Mother's Day letter, honey, cause, as you say, it was not necessary and that letter to Phil certainly made interesting reading. At the same time, I received your letters of May 24, June 4th and June 6th. It was then time for me to leave for work and I hadn't sufficient time to read your mail. I read most of it on the subway going to work and coming home with my dad. I called Emma immediately and she came over last night to pick up the letter. I didn't feel tired til I had gotten Adele bathed and into her crib. After that I was exhausted and not even bothering to clean up the bathroom I stretched across the bed and caught myself a short nap. Mom woke me to tell me that Em was downstairs and it was a little after nine. I hurriedly cleaned the bathroom and then came down. We chatted til 10, then Em left. It started to pour shortly before 10, but let up enough to allow her to į return home.

And now for some comment on your letters, sweet. They did me a world of good and I feel deliciously happy about receiving so much of you at one time, Gosh, did I tell you I love you. I didn't!? Well, suppose I take time out and tell you, my dearest, that you are the sweetest thing this side of heaven and I love you ever so much!

So you turned out a perfect payroll. I don't think you made a bit todo about nothing - that is 
sumpin to be proud of! More power to you, baby! That just about answers your letter of May 24th.

The first letter you wrote in June, on the 4th, advised me that you had received 7 V-mails and two packages. The C. P. pictures should be coming thru any day now. As for getting sick while riding in trolleys, etc. I've noticed that it was due to the fact that I hadn't actually ridden in them for a long time and was, therefore, unaccustomed to the sway which always made me ill. Now, however, I don't find myself getting any ill-effects whatever, and I'm glad of it. Mom liked "Song of Russia" immensely and I'm darn sorry I didn't get to see it. Thanks about wanting me to get the earrings. Suppose we save that too, so that you can pick them out for me. If I do run across anything I would particularly like to have I’ll advise you, honey.

Your letter of the sixth eased my mind somewhat. Although I knew you were safe and everything would be alright, the lack of mail for three whole weeks did have its effect on me and you have to admit that it would be the same for you. I know you are okay, but I feel better when I hear it directly from you - fershtay!

The Invasion, for the most part, relieved the tension for one and all. But, then, as you said, most people didn't get too excited, wondering how high the price would be and who would pay with his life. It was good—yet bad, if'n you know what I mean. However, all seems to be in hand and the latest news - a statement by Churchill that the war would be over this summer sounds almost unbelieveable. I don't believe I'll realize the war is over til I am able to take

page missing

way to keep him pleased and I only questioned him about it. So that I might know that I had been in the right. I didn’t like her remark, but nevertheless I know better than to let it mean anything to me. I'm getting used to having a big fuss made about everything I do and think.

Besides your mail I received the enclosed letter from Seymour, a short letter from Jack N. and a v-mail from Milt. There were also two postcards - one from Dot and Snuff, who are spending a few days, at the shore, the other from Ruth.

Mom, Harry and the Frommers went to visit Goldie this evening. Mom said she got a good look at the baby and it is sweet. Diana's small crib arrived today and Adele made quite a fuss about it. I put Adele in the crib to try it out (it's the same size as that little one I had for her) and she had a grand time. She's beginning to understand about the baby.

Adele knows how to say "yes" now instead of nodding her head. She also says such things as more, omb for comb, wah-wah, (for water. She calls people by their names. Whenever Petey sees her he shakes his forefinger and says no-no to whatever she wants to do. He has her so trained that when he tells her to sit down, she sits - and doesn't dare move. Whenever I chance to mention his name and this has become a habit, she shakes her forefinger and says, "no, no no." Her hair gets longer and curlier and I have more and more trouble combing it. Phil, you really are missing something now. She's a regular cuddly darling and this is the most interesting age of all - from a year and a half to two. That's when 
they, learn to do and say most everything. Oh well, there will come a day -

I'm terribly sorry, honey, that I haven't had the opportunity to mail off the package I have for you,' but I will do so within the next day or so. Forgive me, but it just can’t be helped.

The weather is remarkably cool again, after a hot weekend. I love the cool weather and hope it continues. I enjoy my new job immensely and the afternoon passes so quickly that I can scarcely believe it is gone when six o'clock rolls around. Ann asked me to cash her check this afternoon (her June check, which she hadn't even started to use yet) before going to work. (I should have said morning). Tony met me at 10th and Ruscomb and walked me up to the bank. I cashed the check, depositing the rest of excess cash (now making our account total exactly $200,) and then he rode on the subway with me, as he was going out to West Philly. He looks wonderful, has been home on a 14 day furlough and says he really became acquainted with the kid this time. We chatted about many things. He says his old job will be waiting when he gets back, but he doesn't know if he wants to go back to it. As I said - let's get the war over first - then -

It's getting kind of late, sweet, and I must get some rest. Adele slept through last night and I don't have to tell you how grateful I am when she does. I’m not good for anything' when she doesn't.

I've managed to get off a few letters now and then and wrote to Jack N., Eddie, Milt, Fay and Gloria recently. I still owe Mike Nerenberg a letter and hope to get one off in the near future.

I'm keeping our date regularly, honey, and I'm hoping we'll have a real date real soon. Guess you won't mind if I say it twice in one letter - I love you, Phil! A hug and kiss from

Your Eve,

Dear Eve,

How are you and Adele and the Strongin family? The Navy is not so hot. The chow was good, now it's getting lousy. You work and work and work—25 hours a day. Yesterday was the first time I had a full night's rest. We wash, scrub, serve, tailor, make up our bed, etc. There are two ways of doing things, the right way and the Navy way. We did not begin boot yet. Monday we start. We'll be here 6 to 12 weeks before we get a leave. We are not allowed to leave our area and when walking in two, always keep in step. The drilling is miserable out in that hot sun for 4 hours. They herd us around like cattle. Then we have to wait 5 hours before they bother with you. The Navy slogan “Hurry and Wait.” Boy, I'd give anything to be back in Philly. Don't say nothing to mother. I tell her it's O.K. All our hair was shaven off. I'm going to the movies tonight, I hope. Take care of yourself and write soon. Tell me hows things back in civilization. Oh yes, in the morning it's cold, afternoon it's 130° and storms at night.

Your loving brother,
Admiral SY
Commander of Camp Peary, Va.

Saturday, August 21, 2021

Post #394 - June 17, 18, 1944 Harry Gave Diana a Name Last Night and it Cost Him $5, a Bottle of Good Whiskey and a Honey Cake and When We Arrived at the Odeon (No, Not the One in London), There were Queues for All Seats



June 17, 1944 

Dearest Mine, 

Your letters of May 30 and 31 came through this morning, both of which require no comment. I worked for four hours today and got my third pay, which amounted to exactly $42.08. I splurged by buying my dad a pair of blue gabardine slacks for Father's Day that set me back exactly $6.50. My folks gave me money to get Diana Jean something and I settled for a lovely pink sacque (sweater open down the front). Don't worry, baby mine, I didn't forget you—but the best I could do was a box of 5th Avenue bars. To accompany this I have a box of Nabisco wafers, a few boxes of chiclets, and the two packages of chocolate squares. I hope I get time to mail it off on Monday morning. 

June 18, 1944 

Dearest, I just couldn't finish writing last night. I felt lousy and this morning I awoke with a miserable head cold. My nose and right eye just won't stop running. To that, I'm “due” and feel twice as badly because of it. Harry gave Diana a name last night and it cost him $5, a bottle of good whiskey and a honey cake. I never thought to ask you, but did it cost you anything at the time you gave Adele a name? Goldie’s folks are here and these are the gifts they brought: $1000 bond from grandfather and grandmother, a $100 bill from Murray, Goldie’s brother, her stepmother made the kid three silk nighties and two gorgeous white lace slips. She also brought Goldie a pinafore, a bottle of good perfume and a box of candy, besides sending her a lovely bouquet of flowers. Several other gifts from Poughkeepsie are receiving blankets, an organdy dress, a linen pillow case and a toilet set. Mrs. Frommer got a bunting and Lena and Bob are giving her a cap and sweater set. Harry is terribly excited about the money, and I can't say that I blame him. Goldie’s stepmother made Adele a little blue playsuit, trimmed with white lace, but as usual, her work is very careless. Harry and Goldie send all their bonds to her father to hold. Goldie’s father would like to have Harry in his business with him, but I don't know what Harry thinks. I know he doesn't like the window-washing business. There is so much to tell you, sweet, that I'd rather save for when I see you—

We're having my mom and dad, Ethel, Al, (Al's brother) Ben and the Silvers for dinner this evening. Harry bought his father-in-law, a gorgeous summer robe. Do I have to say how much you are missed today??? Phil—I feel like a good cry. I've begun to realize how much of a break I had when I found myself able to return to work. Someday I'll tell you why, someday—when we can talk to each other, daddy dearest, your ever lovin’ wife and daughter want to send all their love on this, your day, and a prayer that we may have you with us on the very next one to come. Mr. Silver thinks the war will positively be over by the end of the summer. I'm afraid to even let myself think or hope in that vein, knowing what an awful let-down it would be if that were not the case. That dream you spoke of in your letter of the 31st was a queer one. I very rarely have distinct dreams but I did dream the other night—that our Jack made Sgt. Wonder if he did? I’m short on space, not to mention time, honey, so with a lingering kiss and a sweet caress, I again sign and remain 

Your Eve 

18 June 1944 

Dearest one, 

Two days have elapsed since I either heard from you or wrote to you. You see, Sweet, it is only rarely that I can find the time to write during the day, and when my evenings are also occupied as they have been, well, I just don't write. I'll have to ask you to bear with me, darling, when you miss getting a letter or two occasionally. Because I have no new mail to answer, I'll go right ahead and tell you something of what I have been doing these past couple days. 

On the evening of the 15th, as you already know, Sgt. Murphy and I went along with Klein on the Officers’ Liberty Run. Our intention was to see “Tender Comrade,” and, oddly enough, we succeeded in our intention. I say “oddly enough,” because we are so often side-tracked. Usually there are no seats to be had by the time we get into town and we are forced to settle for some inferior entertainment. When we arrived at the Odeon, (no, not the one in London), there were queues for all seats. I went into the lobby to see the doorman and to ask him what our chances were. Just as I approached him, he bawled that five seats were available. Of course I wasted no time procuring three of them. They were good ones, too, in the “circle” (mezzanine). 

The picture was very good, in spite of a good bit of flag-waving. Ginger Rogers was good, but far from perfect in her role of the young wife. At that, she would have had to be very, very good to keep Ruth Hussey from stealing her thunder. The latter consistently makes Ginger appear adolescent and generally incompetent as an actress, although her role isn't “sympathetic.” There is another gal in the picture who presses Miss Hussey closely for acting honors. I don't know her name, but her portrayal of the effervescent young bride is most appealing and perfectly played. She reminded me instantly of Marjorie Weaver in her first roles. The plot itself is simple and utilizes the expedient of “flashbacks” to get the story across. It is the type of story that is commonly described as “timely,” being the story of two young people who married shortly before “Pearl Harbor” and their ensuing history. Too many of the scenes hit “too close to home,” and I was embarrassed to find myself “spilling over” all through the picture. Richard Ryan, incidentally, who plays the part of the young soldier-husband, is very natural in the role, snd gives a highly polished performance which is more commendable for the fact that he is a comparative newcomer to the screen. His good looks are of the type usually described as “homespun.” Perhaps that is why I was continually reminded of the “young Abe Lincoln.” Miss Rogers inhuman restraint in the closing scene “loused up” the picture for me. The woman doesn't live who would have reacted as she did. No woman with the sentimental streak that she displayed, anyway. Her tedious soliloquy in this last scene is as “unmoving” as it is false. On the whole, though, Chippie, I think you would like “Tender Comrade”—if you aren't too critical of the several faults I have mentioned. 

We were hungry when we came out, so we wandered about looking for a restaurant. After some inquiries, we were directed to a small place where we filled up on pork sausage, baked beans, french fries (chips), and coffee. Then Klein took off to get the bus, while Murph and I walked back to the Officers’ Club where we waited for Klein to arrive. About ten minutes after we got there, Klein rolled up. There was still an hour to kill before it came time to start back to camp, and we sat in the cab and “shot the bull” until the officers showed.

The next day, (Friday, the 16th) was a full one. So full, that although I was just itching to get a letter off to you, I just couldn't find the time. I was busy all day, and in the evening something else came up (I can't say what) that prevented it. 

Yesterday (Saturday the 17th), I was on the rifle-range. We started just after lunch and didn't get back to camp ’til almost 10 o'clock. We hadn't eaten for about nine hours, and we were famished when we got to the mess hall. Then we had to wait a half-hour or so until the cook whipped up a hasty supper of corned beef and eggs. When I got back to the barracks, it was almost 11 o'clock and I was tired. Eleven o'clock here, besides being “date time” for us, is also time for “lights out.” So although I couldn't write, I could and did keep our “date.” As a matter of fact, Sweet, I fell asleep with you in my arms, which all brings me right up to the minute. Today is Sunday and things are pretty quiet around here this morning, for which I am grateful, since it has provided me this opportunity to write this long overdue letter. 

Last night, on returning from the range, I went to the Orderly Room to see if I had any mail. There was only Dot’s V-mail of the 9th. I’ll answer it as soon as I have completed this. 

If I receive mail from you this afternoon, Sweet, I may write again today, but only if I don't go out tonight. Tonight being my regular “night out,” I thought I might go in with Klein to see the Wolfs. As yet, though, I haven't definitely decided to do so. It all depends on whether or not I'll have time to bathe before-hand. 

Well, Baby, I guess that's about all for the time being. Give my love to the punkin. I love you more than ever, Chippie. Here's a kiss for you. My love to the Moms—and all. 

Your adoring 

P.S. I need a new pipe, Baby, and since I can't get one to my liking around here, I wonder if you wouldn't be good enough to include a “Yellow-bole” in your next package of candy? 

June 18, 1944

Dear Phil:

Have not received a letter from you for some time, but this time I'm not berating you for it. You must be quite busy, but I will wait until you have time to write. 

You must have received my letter by this time telling you that Snuff leaves June 24th for Uncle Sam's Navy. It isn't too much of a shock to us as we have been expecting it momentarily. Of course, I can't say that I don't feel the shock of it, but we can't help but think how fortunate we have been thus far. 

As you can see by the stationery, we are down Atlantic City for a few days vacation. The baby is home, but I am having a brainstorm that I might like to bring him down here for a few weeks. Of course all this depends on where Snuff is stationed. If he is stationed near home, I won't go away, but if I can't see him anyway, we might as well go away. 

We have been getting around quite a bit lately. Movies shows, Atlantic City, etc. God Bless my Mom! If it wasn't for her, we wouldn't be able to do all these things. 

Snuff got a beautiful, Eversharp Repeater Pencil and Skyline Pen from the fellows in the shop. His two bosses gave him a shockproof, etc., watch, which was very nice. 

I don't know whether you have much time for entertainment lately, but don't miss “Up in Arms.” Danny Kaye is really a riot. You probably know more about what's going on than we do, but the news on this side is very promising. According to the news (Walter Winchell) the war with Germany will definitely be over by August—according to military records. 

The programs were just interrupted with a news flash from Honolulu that the Pacific fleet had just been in the biggest air battle since Midway. You also must know that Japan has been bombed again. Isn't that wonderful! 

The pictures of the baby didn't come out, so I'll have to wait until we take some others. 

Back to our trip, the weather, when we arrived Saturday night was delightful. Sunday was nice, but it poured at night. Today it rained off and on, so we’ll probably take in a movie tonight. Tomorrow night we are going back to the city as Snuff’s sister is coming in from Florida Wednesday morning. Snuff will then have three days home before he leaves. 

This letter, as you can see, is one of the longest I have written to you. You really rate. I wonder if I'll write such long letters to Snuff? There isn't much more I can say right now, except write as soon as possibly can, even if it is only one line. 

As ever,