Postville, Allamakee co. Iowa
July 5, 1918
From Our Soldier Boys - Letter from Merle Cole
The following letter was received by A.J. Phillips of this city:
Somewhere in France
May 31, 1918
Dear Spec: I received your peach of a letter today and am answering in the wee small hours. These watches are lonesome but not half as bad as guarding a picket in the rain. Am operating a switchboard, but it is some different than J.M. Thoma's.
We buried a pal of mine yesterday and it sure was an impressive funeral. As we passed down the street every French soldier snapped up to a salute and young kids and old grey-haired men bared their heads until we passed by. Everyone was mounted but the firing squad and pall bearers. I was a pall bearer and it was a hard thing for me to do. When you bury a friend 6,000 miles from home it is no picnic.
I took my nag out to the creek today and gave him a bath and he looks fine. He didn't exactly appreciate it at the time, but he sure does now.
Postville sure did go "over the top" in the LIberty Loan, didn't she? If you fellows didn't "go over" back there we would be out of luck over here, so go to it. We will give old man Kaiser that pill you were talking about in record time if you keep that up.
"Fatty's" letter reminds me of our times at Camp Mills, when they were taking us out to dancing parties. At the time Brooklyn and New York kept us pretty busy tho' and we didn't appreciate it. I sure would like to dance with an American girl at the present writing tho'.
Coming from the funeral yesterday we met a Red Cross nurse and she said "Hello Boys!" Whoops! but it does send a thrill up a guy's back and makes him proud of being a Yank. The French girls never can compare with our "Distinctly Individual" Americans.
Gee! I didn't think Harold was in the graduating class. It makes me feel as if I should retire and settle down to a ripe old age. I hope we never have to retire. (Joke)
So you and Heck are teaching the rookie squads east? We sure got our fill of that at Camp Mills. Can't you and Heck write a partnership letter? I haven't heard from him since I packed my tooth brush and towel and left Postville and would like to hear from him. So Al and Fat are both Lieutenants? Send me the address of some of those kids that are over here and I will try and look them up.
Hdq. Co. 151 F.A., A.F.F.
[transcribed by S.F., February 2006]
Postville, Allamakee co. Iowa
July 19, 1918
Mrs. Louis Hill left Wednesday on the return trip to her home in Columbus, Ohio, going by way of Madison, Wis., for a short visit.
Some thoroughly modern dwellings and choice residence lots in Postville, aood location, are offered for sale at a reasonable price. Chas. Krumm.
Rudolph Hein and Miss Charlotte Bencher went to Cedar Rapids yesterday to commit matrimony, and with friends innumerable we congratulate.
For Sale -- S.C. Rhode Island Red cockerels, won at Winona, Independence and Oelwein and other sows. Enquire of M. Christopher, Postville, Iowa.
Mrs. John Snyder and Miss Catherine Schade of Lawrenceburg, Tenn., and Mrs. Tom Andre of Bridgeport, Wis., are guests at the A. Wersinger home.
Miss Minnie Schutte came Monday from Chicago to spend her two weeks vacation with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Helmuth Schuette, relatives and many friends.
Mrs. John Buchsteiner and children of Reedsburg, Wis., who have been visiting relatives and friends here the past two weeks, returned to their home today.
Louie Groth and Fred Kohler of Elgin, Fred Humphrey of Clermont and Delbert Kohrs of Postville were operated at Postville Hospital Tuesday for tonsils and adenoids.
Mr. and Mrs. Paul Sonnkalb, Mr. and Mrs. Chris Salzgeber, Rev. J.J. Clune and Mrs. Elizabeth Sonnkalb made an auto trip to West Union, Elkader and McGregor Sunday.
The Herman and Wencil Lansing families came down from Ossian on Sunday night to see Fred Tuttle off to Mooseheart, Ill, to join the cement workers in Uncle Sam's service.
Mrs. Amy Bike of Marcus, Wash., and Miss Helen Haines of Independence, who have been visiting relatives here for some time past departed for their respective homes on Wednesday.
Among McGregor visitors Sunday were Mr. and Mrs. A.L. Meier, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Luhman, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Luhman and Mrs. A.E. Cornell, J.H. Dannenbrink and family and Miss Hattie Mott.
The annual convention of the Winneshiek and Allamakee W.C.T.U., will be held in the Congregational church, Postville, Aug. 8 and 9. Mrs. Ida B. Wise Smith, state president, expects to be in attendance and help thruout the convention, giving an address the first evening.
At a meeting held early this week to consider putting Postville business places on a stricly cash basis in every line, it was unamimously agreed to adopt that plan. Fred Luhman, F.C. Comstock, Bart Fleming and Harvey Roberts were appointed to draft plans suitable to all lines and present them at an adjourned meeting next Monday night.
Mrs. W.J. Woodworth returned to her home in Chicago Sunday noon after a visit to her husband, who is here promoting the Dubuque packing concern. In a letter to her husband, received yesterday, she speaks highly of the pleasant time shown her by the people of this city and says she enjoyed her first trip west of Chicago immensely.
Postville has two cases of smallpox at this writing. The Mrs. Eva Jones home was quarrantined on Saturday evening and the home of Agent Miller of the Milwaukee was duly labelled on Sunday evening. Both of the cases are very mild nature and there is little fear of a further spread of the disease. A report has just come in that the Wm. Brandt home in west Postville was quarrantined this forenoon, making a total of three cases.
Dr. and Mrs. A.A. Schmidt and Joyce Gertrude and Mr. and Mrs. J.E. Perry autoed over to Dover, Minn., Sunday where the Jones chautauqua system was holding forth and visited their daughters, Lella Schmidt and Maude Perry, who comprise the Perry-Schmidt Co., and found them well, happy and enjoying their first season's chautauqua work immensely, and the hearty encores after each number on their program is the best avidence in the world they are making good.
"Over There" they Go.
The following from this locality will go in the July calls to help in copping off the Kaiser:
Frederick J. Miller
Otto G. Foels
Wm. V. Phillips
George Leo Hanks
David P. Phillips
Ralph E. Green
Andy E. Clark
Fred G. Lange
Lester E.S. Harnack
Herbert H. Gass
Erin W. Schultz
Richard F. Williams
Verni H. Engel
John B. Wersinger
Theodore H. Baker
Henry W. Schroeder
Edgar F. Krueger
Emer. J. Schuette
Leo M. Mielke
Harvey F. Sass
Glen A. DeGraw
Henry J. Appel
Herbert F. Hupfer
YOU LOSE MONEY if you don't feed LINSEED MEAL to the HOGS. For Sale by HALL ROBERTS SON, Postville, Iowa
[transcribed by S.F., April 2006]
Postville, Allamakee co. Iowa
Friday, July 26, 1918
Kids Burn Kaiser.
A bunch of school kids -- boys and girls -- assembled at the school house grounds Saturday evening with banners, tin cans, etc., and stuffed a dummy which thye labelled "kaiser bill." They then marched down the street to the Farmers' Store corner, where, after stoning and clubbing the dummy they poured on oil and burned the beast. Postville school kids are loyal to the limit, for they had patriotism instilled into them by their superintendent, G.W. Hunt, who by works as well as words proved the faith that is in him -- giving up his position, leaving wife and baby, to enlist, and he is now in France in the uniform of a common soldier, ready to die if need be that his country may not be ravished by the hated Hun.
Neiborhood News - Items of interest From Allamakee and Adjoining Counties
-A barn dance at the Quillan place on Makee Ridge netted the Red Cross $88.31.
-Sidney Bowen of Waukon, now in France, has been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.
-The town of Clayton dedicated a service flag containing 18 stars last Friday, M.X. Geske of McGregor was the speaker.
-Mrs. Mary Cook of Cedar Rapids put $20 in the ice box to kill germs. The next day when she looked for the money it was gone, germs and all.
-A prize of $100 has been offered for the biggest pig raised in the 12 northern townships of Fayette county. It must be donated to the Red Cross.
-The Capoli button works at Lansing has shut down owing to a scarcity of help. In normal times this concern employed from 75 to 100 men
-One hundred and fifty women have been employed by the Chamberlain machine works of Waterloo to take the place of men who have entered the army.
-While the automobile belonging to Hans Keiser of Elgin was standing on the streets of Clermont in front of the Chris Miller residence last Friday evening, some party or parties smeared yellow paint over the hood.
-Forty-seven of Waukon's young men have been called to the colors -- on the farms, under the "work or fight" order which went into effect July 1st, and are being located as rapidly as possible with farmers who are in need of assistance.
-Miss Lizzie Mitchell of over in Ludlow recently sold 47 head of 2 year old cattle for $6,440. She purchased these cattle two months ago and placed them on her farm over in the Waukon locality. It is said she cleared $2,000 on the deal.
-There's a team of horses waiting for the Clayton county soldier who gets to Berlin first, John Kauffman, near Guttenberg, says he will give the best team of horses and harness on his farm to the Clayton county soldier who puts up the American flag in the streets of Berlin. -- Volga City News
[transcribed by S.F., May 2006]