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Letter, August 14, 1917

[Letter on color stationery of the War Work Council, Army and Navy Young Men's Christian Association]

Quincy Ills %5th Reg Band Aug 14 1917

Dear Mother & Father-

Well I rec. the letter yesterday all OK. Was sure glad to get it.

We have not gone yet and probly won't this week. We are making all preparations and are ready to go anytime.

Mother our pay day should be not more than a week from now. Will give you some money then if that will be soon enough. But if you need some before that you will have to send my check book to me.

I have a pretty silk handkerchief that Stella gave me Sunday. I think I will send it home for you to keep for me. And I m[a]y send my leather putees home too. A little later on I may want my big wool sweater.

We gave been having ideal weather here. Just cloudy enough to be cool in the daytime. today tho, it looks as if it were going to rain. Sleeping has been great. Cool enough that you want both your blankets.

The report was in the paper here that last Sun. would be our last dress parade here. And you ought to have seen the crowd of people that were out here. The bluffs on both sides of the parade grounds were full of people and all over the sides of the bluffs and looked to be a couple thousand people on the parade grounds.

I was to see Stella last night. I sure won't get to see her very many more times. Her other brother at home has been drafted.

Well it is almost noon. The boys have just gotten in off a long hike. They started at seven oclock this morning. Was teaching one of our sergeants somethings about the general service code this morning. I suppose I will have to instruct nearly all the buglers too.

I don't know if I have put enough postage on the picture I am sending home or not. You may have to pay a few cents to get it. I think it is a really good picture of the band. It was taken one evening before we moved out here to camp. it was taken after the sun was way low. I thot the picture was probly no good is why we never seen anything of it, but Sun. Serg. Salladay came walking in the tent with the picture, so I told him I wanted one. All the fellows in the band now are not on the picture, as it was taken before some of them were enlisted.

I am still putting in most of my spare time learning signal work. I figure that at some time I may be glad for every bit of it I know. And as I am learning both codes it makes it so much better for me.

The names of the fellows in the band are as follows, beginning on the left side of the picture and those standing up are -- Corporal Brown; Gardener; Asst. Band Leader, - Sergeant Dege; Hendrickson; Chief musician, Sergeant Kellogg; Detmers; Serg. Baum; Wade; Clawson; Rege; and middle row on left side are -- Glaspy; Serg. Revello; Morton; Longstreth; Messileno; Stone; Tompson; Corp. Steed; and in front row - on left side are -- Stuebe; Drum Major, First Serg. Salladay; Corp. Blankenburg; Ringler; Quaeppetto; Vincent. Those in the band that are not in the picture (came in after picture was taken) are Gario; Loar; Hodalski; Wilson; Wahlfeledt; Al Stuebe; Brother of the Stube in the picture.

Our dress parades are something good to see now. I guess I have mentioned about it this morning. As it is almost time to do the rest of my bugling, will close for the night.

Well I am writing this about the middle of the night. As Head quarters has no steady bugler, I am doing the job of bugling today, as this is the day for our company. I am the only one that knows all the calls, it seems, so I am the one called on to do it. It is no bad job at that, for there are not much more than a dozen calls or so and that is all I have done all day. Rather a snap. Only a bugle is awfully hard to blow beside the trumpet of mine, and "call to quarters" is blowed at 10:30 at night, and "taps" is blowed at 11 -- so you can easily see what I am up for.

The first call of a morning is blown at 5:20. I am most generaly up at 5.

I heard some talk this evening that we may not get to go to France, that we will just stay on the border. I really will feel dissapointed if we don't get to go.

Have you noticed the bright northern lights to night. They can be seen so plain here, for we are up on a bluff and nothing at all around us.

Well this is Wed - 15 - Have been out on a little hike - Slept most of the time. Have a little cold - Don't know where I got it, but my head feels kinda thick.

We still have no idea when we are going to leave - Some say it will be Friday morning, but I am pretty sure they are not right.

Got a letter from Maude this morning - She is going on her vacation to Warden and is probly there by this time. If we go in the next few days and stop in E. St. Louis, may get to see her - Altho I am not counting on it at all -

Well I have told about all I know so I hope to get a letter from you telling me all about everything.

I was down town yesterday afternoon to take my bath and swim.

Well hoping to hear from you soon I am as ever your loving son

Paul B.

I suppose you gave Cecil her picture, did you?

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August 1917