1 July 1945
Dear Tommy and family:
I am sorry as hell, but I don’t seem to be able to get a hold of a Jerry rifle. You see when the war ended they were either surrendered or collected by the army and turned into collecting points where they are destroyed. I will keep on looking and I may be able to pick one up, but don’t plan on it. I am sorry I didn’t send one when we were still fighting for they were plentiful then.
I might tell you of the country I am in now. It is called Bavaria. I am on the Danube wrier near the Austrian Czechoslovakia border. The part of Czechoslovakia I am near is called Bohemia.
Contrary to all the songs and stories the Danube river is not Blue, but a dirty greenish brown. I know for I have been on it in a boat and as I set in my office writing this letter I am looking out on to the river. The biggest city close to use is Passau a very old city established by the Romans. It has a large cathedral in which is the largest pipe organ in the world. There is also an old castle there which the division has turned into a rest center for G-Is and a part of the castle is a club for officers. Among the entertainers are many Hungarians (gypsy) musicians, acrobats and we even have a circus of our own it is also Hungarian.
This part of Germany is a farming country with rolling hills and many trees. We are about 3 to 4 hours by jeep from Birchesgarden (I am not sure of the spelling) [Berchtesgaden] which was Hitler’s hang out. From the southern part of ouroccupation area the Alps are plainly visible. The people especially the peasants have very colorful costumes. The men wear short leather pants bright green or red jackets and very funny hats. We are not very far from Nuremberg, the place where the Nazi’s used to hold their big pep meetings.
This is all very beautiful but I wish to hell I were out of it. With a little luck we will no doubt be home by Xmas then probably go to the Pacific. I hope not. [letter is torn at top of page] If I could hit a pheasant it has been so long since I have tried. Maybe if I had my Tommy gun I could scare hell out of one.
So long old fellow,