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30 Miles from the Canadian Border

Posted by on April 26, 2015

July 28, 1943. A letter from Stanley to Dad. After being stationed at Great Falls for all of eighteen days, Stanley is on the move again and is now stationed at the Army Air Base in Cut Bank Montana. The move was made on July 26th by truck, with ten men in the back of each vehicle. The approximately 100 mile trip took them from 7:15 AM till noon with several stops along the way. The trip was uneventful except for when “One truck pulled over on a soft shoulder and was about to stop when [a] small trailer on back tipped over and the truck almost tipped over but due to careful maneuvering the truck did not tip over. One or three fellows were hurt and landed in the hospital with a hurt shoulder but he was later released a day later.”

Since everything has been packed up for the move, they were not busy in the past few days, but now they are very busy getting everything unpacked and caught up to the point that “you do not know if you are coming or going.”  Of the base at Cut Bank he says, “This isn’t a bad place. It is similar to Ephrata. We are the only squadron here and we get pretty good meals.” He goes on to say, “The mountains in the distance are still covered with snow. We are 30 miles from the Canadian border, we are on the Blackfoot Indian Reservation.”

He goes into even more detail, “The city here is a small city with a few oil wells on the fields around here. The Glacier park which I wrote you about while going passed on my way on furlough is only 30 miles away. They say fishing is awfully good up there.  I hope!”  

He comments that they have “pretty nice barracks”, describing them as “a double barrack with a latrine in between.” He also mentions that they have a pet badger on base that is “flat and wide and looks cute”. He further comments that it is tame and “has nice fur and would make a nice fur coat if you had a few like it.”

Stanley provides an illustration of the barracks layout in his first letter from Cut Bank on July 28, 1943.

Stanley provides an illustration of the barracks layout in his first letter from Cut Bank on July 28, 1943.


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