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We Know it Will End

Posted by on April 18, 2016

July 17 and 21, 1944: Anna writes two letters from home in Albany NY to her brothers. Her husband Eddie’s vacation is over and things are getting back to normal, or as Anna writes, “peace and quiet has once more descended on our household.” As Anna tells it, Eddie “certainly did enough fishing”, and they took trips to both Saratoga Lake and Lake Champlain where, in addition to Eddie getting to fish, they swam and grilled hot dogs. Anna reports, “I ate five of them…boy were they swell or maybe we were hungry from swimming… My muscles in my hands and all over ached from the strenuous exercise, but it was fun while it lasted.”

Apparently Stanley sent a special letter from Deenthorpe to the family back home and Anna makes a point to mention it. “Stanley, we received you long typewritten letter on toilet paper. You are right, the Army supplies the best quality …and this paper on which you wrote us the letter is De-Luxe special. You will have a souvenir of English toilet paper to keep when you get back home for good.  …it seems to me that it was the longest letter that we had from you since you were in the Army.”

In another week or so, little Terry will be 21 months old. Anna provides some detail. “She has twelve teeth in her mouth now and if she only had four more she could eat like we do without getting everything chopped and smashed and mashed. Yesterday she saw me eat a hard boiled egg so she did too and liked it…up to now she wouldn’t even smell it.”

Now that Terry is in the toddler stage, she is really developing quite a personality and continues to keep everyone amused. As Anna is typing the letter “…Terry is playing with mama’s shoes under the bed. She has dolls and toys, and do you think she will play with them? No, Sir. She goes and gets mama’s shoes, and daddy’s slippers or a dirty rag or some kind of overshoes and has the time of her life with them.”

Anna has also recycled some of the sweaters that Terry has grown out of and has put them on her stuffed rabbit and rag doll. “…she likes them better now that they are dressed up. …[they] go to sleep with Terry. If they aren’t in the crib with her when she goes to sleep she yells for them until I bring them and then she puts her nose right by them and goes to sleep. The same goes for eating. She has to have the two of them sitting with her in the high chair and it certainly is crowded and it’s quite the job to feed all three of them at once.”

In other news from the home front:

  • Their cousin Eddie Morawski and his new wife Rose came for a visit. Eddie is “…on his way back to the Marine Corps and Rose is to go back to her mother for the duration.”
  • Anna and Eddie went to the drive-in on Saratoga Rd. to see “Hello Frisco Hello” and “Mantrap”. Anna writes that “…both pictures were good, namely ‘Hello Frisco Hello’ because it was in technicolor”

Anna also reacts to the latest war news, and there is a lot of it in the first half of July 1944:  Allied forces are finally breaking out of the “battle of the hedgerows” and starting across Nazi occupied France; Soviet troops have liberated Vilnius (Vilna), Lithuania; Caen, France is liberated by British troops; Allied forces have captured Saipan and continue to sweep through the southern Pacific islands; and as a result, General Tojo resigns from the Japanese government.  The capture of Saipan (and the rest of the Mariana Islands) is strategically important as it places American B-29s within range of the Japanese mainland. Anna declares, “The news on all fronts is wonderful and it can’t be long now and the war will be finished. Anyway, now at least we know it will end and not like before when it seemed like there was no hope.”

Below is newsreel coverage of the Liberation of Vilnius.

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