12 March 1943 – Letter from Dad to Mom

Letter or Postcard – Letter

Sender – Ralph Peterson

Recipient – Phyllis Peterson

Postmark Place – St. Petersburg, Florida

Postmark Date – 12 March 1943

Letter Date – 12 March 1943



My dearest wife,

Well I suppose you will get this letter the same time as the one I sent earlier tonight. Or I should say last night. You see, this is two in the morning and I am up I am wandering around the hotel on the watch for fire. I was woke up at one this morning and will be a fire guard until three. That is two hours of work in the middle of the night. There is four stories in this hotel and one man for two stories. My buddy from Coloma is on along with me. He has the first two and I have the top two stories. We have to make the rounds one every fifteen minutes so I am writing in between the rounds. I didn’t have nothing else to do so I thought I would write to you. When they woke me up I was dreaming of you and I was sure mad because they made me miss a nice part of the dream, so I will write to you. It really is a wonderful night out. When I get up on the top floor I always go out on a balcony and stand for a while. Then I start to think of you and I get so darn lonesome. I can’t do nothing about it, though, so I try to put my feelings on paper, which is sort of hard to do. But you know how much I love you, anyway. I still am going to keep on telling you anyway. Here I am back again after another round of fire guard. All we have to do is take a light and flash in all the rooms and see if anybody is smoking in bed, and if there are any fires we are supposed to let the Corporal of the guard know about it. I haven’t seen nothing yet. I am going to try to keep this letter going until my fire watch is up – that is if you can stand all the screwy writing. I can’t think of anything to write about as I just wrote you about five hours ago, but I will keep plugging along and see what I can think of to write. I haven’t much time left as my guard watch is pretty near up. In case you didn’t get my letter that I sent last night I want you to know I got it and I also want you to keep on writing letters like that, as it helps boost up my morale…or my courage, I should say, up in these dark hallways. Remember, I want you to keep on writing, and your Dad and Mom to start writing. Tell your dad that if he don’t write I will come home and give him a licking. I think that’s about all for now as my two hours are just about done and I’m going back to bed for a couple more hours sleep. That’s all for now honey, from your soldier husband. Bye now. Sweet dreams, Ralph

PS – I’m going to send you home a nice souvenir from this here town. RP

Note: In later years Dad informed me that he did not dream. I told him that was nonsense, and that everyone dreamt. A short time before he passed away in 1994 he told me he had dreamt of his Dad, that his Dad told him they were going on a trip and that he should be sure to wear his jacket.

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