Full transcription of text follows:
Lt. J.E. Henschel, Motor Section, Advance P.C., G.H.Q., A.P.O. 930, Amer. Ex. F. February 2nd, 1919. Dear Dad: Uncle Sam is supplying the paper again tonight I don't think it a very great crime to use it, especially when writing home. Had a queer experience the other day. There is a lieutenant here who wears a Masonic ring, so of course I mentioned the fact that I carried an Ivanhoe card. We had quite a talk, about things in general, and it seems that his Masonic career is about as extended as mine. We tried to go over some of the work together, but I'm afraid it was all wrong, for neither of us could recall enough of the work to get into any lodge room in the world. At least I hope that there is no lodge so lax in its requirements. By the way, I'm getting better. A fuse blew out five minutes ago, and I have been writing this in the dark. Which shows that I have no absolutely forgotten everything that I know. Still can hammer the old typewrite typewriter once in a while. Of course I have no idea how many mistakes I am making, and this may present a weird appearance when I finish, but I shall send it none the le less. Also there is no bell on this poor old machine an- the end of a line. My work here is the same as at my last writing, except that there has been added to it the work of gathering a large number of German trucks left in this vicinity when the German armies retreated. By the terms of the armistice, all war materials that were left behind, immediately became the property of the army taking over that particular territory. THEREFORE THE German military authorities, with their customary thoroughness and there ability to cheat some one, this time cheated their own people by selling and giving them all sorts of war material, among it, a large number of trucks and passenger cars. Yesterday morning I found on my desk an enormous pile of papers with this penciled note on top: Henschel, here is some dope. Get these things in. Hays."
(Strange things were revealed by a match) And as HA And as Hays at the present time is the chief of staff for G.H.Q. I figure that I have a job on my hands. SO tomorrow morning bright and early will find me with an interpreter and a gun craing over the country gathering in contraband motors. The ciry dealing Germans literally stole thousands of dollars from their own people. And yet the very people who were robbed stand up for the organization It's beyond me to understand. Once more my regular note from now on, and I shal call this quits until I get light to see what I write. CAN'T WASTE SYMPATHY ON THE "STARVING GERMANS? for there isn't any such thing. Everyone that one sees in the streets, except the very old, are not only healthy, but really fat. There are none of the thin underfed kiddies that we have seen for the last two years throughout France and Belgium. It's a fact; if anything the Germans as a national have enough of all they need, except fat and fat products such as soaps and the like. They certainly make me tired. The funny thing to me is, that no one here at Trier seems to blame the Kaiser; he was rather unfortunate but he was all right so far as possible in all his doings. The Germans here say that they were not beaten, and laugh at us, beh behind our backs, and to our faces at times. This sympathy business makes me sick. I think they should be treated just as they tried to treat the rest of the world. The British and Belgians, in some places, have taken the old German orders of four years ago, and reposted them, with british and Belgian names at the bottom. I get in touch with the beast quite a lot these days, and association does not help my impression of them at all (Hooray, lights are on again) They tell one a story, and then on investigation, we find it is all one lie after another. All of them do it. One instance that I have in mind happened yesterday. We wanted parts for a German truck that we were using in work affecting the welfare of the Germans themselves, and friend burgermeister, the slickest crook of the lot told the wildest tale I ever listened to. That afternoon, investigation showed that he himself had stolen the parts, a magneto and carburetor, from the machine, and we found them in his home. SO much for that. It is late and I am going to my billet. My love to all those at home. Ned. No mail has been forwarded to me as yet - so have not heard from home for quite a time. Seems longer than it is.
From the service of James E. (Ned) Henschel, Co. B Reserve Mallet--French Army, American Field Service, Quartermaster Corps, General Hdgts., and Motor Transport Co. 831.
|Date||February 2, 1919|
|Year Range from||1919|
|Year Range to||1919|
Henschel, James (Ned) Edward
World War I