On February 14, Monty writes home that he has not found time for a real letter but “am therefore scratching a few lines anyhow.” He writes again that there has “been nothing of particular interest to record since my last letter except those things which are ‘defendu’ by the censor.” He has however unburdened his soul to Mabel ten days earlier on subjects that might also have been “defendu” though he may simply be sparing his mother the scary reports of his life in a battle zone. So he moves on to safer ground.

“Am glad to say a shipment of cigars and pipe tobacco came through to me Monday—two boxes of cigars and 12 packages of pipe tobacco.” The timing was right “as I had been out of cigars for over a week and the Commissary had none.” “The package of pecans with sweater…has never been received and am afraid has been lost or stolen…. Understand our Intelligence Service is looking into this matter of lost packages and hope they are able to stop it.”

“Took in another reception where the socially elect are found. ‘Among those present’ was an American grand opera singer [Emma Hayden Eames?][1] who has never sung in America. She sang very charmingly but [I] was amused at the grand mannier (?) she had acquired over here.”

Another highlight was “Last Sunday morning I had some real pancakes and syrup for breakfast with some American friends at their apartment and they were surely good.

This afternoon I was at the Pathé Frères[2] factory…modern throughout according to our American ideas. Rather strange to have seen this French “movie” manufactory before ever having seen an American one.”

Never a mention of Valentine’s Day.

[1] So far, unable to identify.

[2] Film production, responsible for popular Pauline in Peril series appearing in US in 1918. No clue why TCM is at the factory.

 

Transcription:

[YMCA letterhead preprinted with 1917 in the date line]

A.P.O. 702

Feb. 14, [1918]

 

Dear Mother –

Have run over my weekly time for writing expecting to find time to write a decent letter but am kept so busy these days that I never seem to find time enough. Am therefore scratching a few lines anyhow.

There’s been nothing of particular interest to record since my last letter except those things which are “defendu” by the censor. Am glad to say that a shipment of cigars and pipe tobacco came through to me Monday – two boxes of cigars and 12 packages of pipe tobacco. It was most welcome as I had been out of cigars for over a week and the commissary had none – nor do I know when they’ll have any there. The package of pecans with sweater which you mention has never been received and am afraid has been lost or stolen as so many packages have been. Understand our Intelligence Service is looking into this matter of lost packages and hope they are able to stop it.

Took in another reception this week where the socially elect are found. “Among those present” was an American grand opera singer who has never sung in America. She sang very charmingly but was amused at the grand mannir (?) [manière] she had acquired over here.

Last Sunday morning I had some real pancakes and syrup for breakfast with some American friends at their apartment and they were surely good. What around there Saturday night and they insisted on my spending the night and being there for pancakes in the morning – you may well believe that I didn’t hesitate long about accepting.

The weather has been fine most of the time for the past month – very little colder than at home at this season and, I understand, much milder than it has been the last two or three winters. I guess the weatherman is making up for the rotten fall we had over here. My work now takes me out in a machine nearly every afternoon and I have enjoyed getting a good look at this famous old City during the good weather. It’s usually cloudy and often foggy until about 9 or 10 o’clock but better after that. This afternoon I was at the Pathé Frères factory and it was a wonderfully interesting place – modern throughout according to our American ideas. Rather strange to have seen this French “movie” manufactory before ever having seen an American one.

Hope you are all continuing well. Will write again soon.

With love,

Carl

 

O.K.

Thomas C. Montgomery

2nd Lt Inf. U.S.R.

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