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Letter, December 23, 1917

Camp Logan Houston Texas. % Hq. co. 129 Inf.

Dec 23 - 1917 -

My dear friend Cecil.

Well I rec. your Xmas card and it just reminded me of one friend I have been neglecting this long time. I have been busy tho and if I let mother go three weeks with out a letter, perhapps you will excuse me for my neglect. Since Gen. Bell has returned from France he has been giving us more to do than we seem to be able to find time for.

You ought to see the mail situation here at camp. About every hour is mail call and there is from one to three large mail bags for our one company alone and you can imagine what it is at the general postoffice where the mail is handled for the hundreds of companies here.

Cecil you must see the two large pictures of the camp and our company I sent mother, if you have not already seen them. That will give you an idea how we are living here and also give you an idea of one little part of the Camp Logan grounds.

Today seems like mid summer here. it is really hot and our tents are all furled up and no place to find any shade. The sun sure is hot. Always a pretty good breeze blowing.

I think tomorrow night I will get to go to Alvin to see my cousin. will spend that night and next day with her.

I am working today on a large map of the camp here. It has the camp and surrounding roads and rail roads and the extreme west part of Houston on it. As soon as I get it completed I will turn it over to Capt Alexander and he is going to show it to Colonel green of this Reg. and Gen Hill of the 65th Brigade.

My maps drawing has done more to win me my rank of corporal than anything I ever did. And I like to do it, I guess is the reason I get as much out of it as I do.

I was in Houston last night. The Xmas display is sure great. Looks something more like a 4th of July for there are a great many places that have quite a fire works display.

Well I have seen and visited quite a few little places in Texas, such as Galveston, and Texas City, both on the Gulf and Alvin and Houston and spent some time in Fort Worth on the way down here. And if I get the chance I am going to see more of it before I leave here. You sure have to go the farthest down here to see anything. an ordinary town of 1000 will cover enough ground for the city of Danville easy enough.

Well mother tells me you are working at Emerys. I certainly was glad you got a place of that kind to work. And I am sure you feel better since you have employment. And it does a person good I think to get out and among other people.

So much you can learn by just observing. That is the way I get a great deal of my education here in the army. All you have to do is just keep your eyes open and so much you can learn by others experience, and keeps you from making many mistakes you other wise would. And I have been changed around so much since I enlisted and have to get acquainted with a new bunch every once in a while. I am now with fellows that are from the northern part of the state. No one that I knew over a couple of months ago. Our platoon is composed of men picked from about a dozen different companies. So now I am used to meeting strangers. It is rather lonesome among so many men tho some times and I have a desire to meet people that I really am acquainted with and really know to be friends of mine.

I am shown enough respect tho, for all noncommissioned officers must be treated in that way, but I am not easy to make friends with people, while I am sociable to all, I do not take them into my confidence at all.

It don't pay in a place like this and another thing it is none of their business what I was or or who I am out side of just what they know me to be.

Wednesday we are to have a most rigid inspection. I don't know if I am going to have time to get all my clothes clean or not. must try and do it today. We hardly know what to do first. every day is a work day for us. No real hard labor but something to keep us busy all the time.

I don't know if you have any pictures of me now or not. I am going to send some anyway and not only that but am going to expect one or so of you in return. You see I am not really generous. I just want a trade.

How is all the young folks in our part of town. Mother doesn't tell me any thing at all about them, I guess she doesn't know is the reason. So I am going to expect you to tell me all the news about yourself and of our neighborhood that is of any interest. Well I must close as I hardly have time to write more - and am going to look for a letter and at least one picture soon. I hope to remain one of your best friends -

Paul B.

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December 1917