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Postcards, April 11, 2003

[Series of 11 postcards addressed to Mrs. J.P. Hendrickson]

Postcard view

[Scene: La Frontière illustrée, VILLERUPT. - Rue Pouyer-Quertier]

I

April 11- 1919-

Villerupt- France-

We have been playing for most a week now for 6th Corps Headquarters here.

concert at nite is all we have to do- some times its just play for a show.

[added in address area:]

You will probly not hear more from he until I get in camp over there.



Postcard view

[Scene: VILLERUPT. - Un coin de la Place - Jour de Marchéā]

II

Then we have all the day to our selves and Elmer & I have visited the steel mills here and close here. It would be impossible to describe the state of waste - thru systematic distruction the plant is now in.



Postcard view

[Scene: VILLERUPT. - Quartier de Micheville]

III

This is the offices & official houses at the entrance of the large plant. It is an immense one. Doing a great work before & during the war. No copper or Brass or engines have been left. All vital parts have been blown up or demolished in some manner.



Postcard view

[Scene: La Frontière illustrée, VILLERUPT. - Rue de Micheville]

IV

This is the business street of the city- and there is no danger of being run over at any time of the day. Perfectly safe at all times. Well I understand we are transferred to the s.o.s. for transportation home - which I hope begins operating on us - sooner the quicker -



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, Gelsenkirchener Hütte - Hauts-fourneaux]

V

These big smeltering works are in Esch- close here- have been there a few times. They turn out nothing at present but pig iron.

Fine looking plant

Esch is also a much larger town than this one we are in. This evening we took a 5 m[in]. walk which took us over into Lorraine.



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, Adolf Emil Hütte]

VI

20 minutes more would have put us into Luxemburg. So to go from one country to another here - is only a matter of a very few minutes.

From Esch it would take only a short time on a wheel to ride into Belgium. I thot of doing it today as we have done nothing at all but weather is a bit rainy & I thot best not to.



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, Metzer-Schmelz - Dampf-Turbinen der elektrischen Centrale]

VII

The machinery in this plant as the cut shows is some of the best. This plant - even tho in Lux. did a big work during the war furnishing the germans with munitions.

This plant at Villerupt is typical of hundreds of others thru out northern & eastern France - which have been



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, Aachener Hütte]

VIII

destroyed in like manner - & will take years to restore them to their original condition of efficiency.

It is a constant reminder to the men on reconstruction work - of the inhuman actions of the huns - and if ever they should have a feeling of leniency in their hearts toward the huns - only to open their eyes & look about would drive it out forever.



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, HoeterstraŠe]

IX

german prisoners are used to some extent in restoring order. They look on the American soldier as he walks along in his care free manner with a peculiar expression on his face - one of resentment I imagine - for had we staid out of it - this all would belong to Germany now - where as they have lost all & now no more than slaves to their folly. And I should not wonder and they wish that - ones more responsible for this vast waste - than themselves were here to help them to clean up the rubbish they were so willing to make. You feel good to see them laboring on their own works of destruction - and sympathy is the last feeling you would have towards them.



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, Casino und Beamtenhauser der Gelsenkirchener Akt. Ges.]

X

yesterday I rec. your letter of Mar. 18- certainly sorry my letter telling you of my return from the haspitas has been so slow getting to you. I don't know how long after you rec. these cards it will be before I am home. but I hope not very long. And please don't make any effort to see me in camp before being demobolized - for I have a desire to see you at home-first. Have been informed our sailing date has been put up a notch & we expect to be on the move any time now.



Postcard view

[Scene: Esch-Alzette, Synagogue]

XI

Our trip to Nice has passed away the month of march as if it were shorter than shortest month of the year. And this weeks vacation here has been a means of passing away the fore part of this month [runs] rapidly & successful. So the days go fast even tho the great event is a matter of days any more instead of weeks. With love to all & hoping to be with you once more & soon. I am as ever your loving son-

Paul Hendrickson

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