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Letter from Elvin Weflen, Renville County Journal, 9-27-1918: A Soldier’s Letter

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My Dear Mother:

This is the first Sunday at Camp. It is kind of quiet. We took measurements for our uniforms today, but I don’t suppose we will get them quite yet. I have not had my examination yet but think it will come off tomorrow. Of course I do not know yet for sure.

Last night the sergeant took us to a show. It sure was great. We liked very much. Talk about singing! When there are 20,000 voices in one it sure sounds fine. The sergeant also bought us some ice cream, candy, cigarettes and other things good to eat. Mother, this is sure some life. It can’t be beat, only of course it is hard the first couple of weeks until we get toughened in. I have not been sick a minute since I came down here but have been feeling fine all the time.

Has Albert gone yet? Here is a list of what he should take along on the trip: his old suit, a couple of suits of underwear, a pair of heavy shoes, socks, handkerchiefs, and towels, shaving outfit, a good lunch to eat on the road, a heavy blanket and anything that could be of use in the morning when it is cold. You know we have to get up at 5:45 in the morning and be in at 9:00 in the evening. We have to shave and take a bath every day. That suits me perfectly.

Well how are all the folks around home. Tell them “Hello” for me, and that I have not time to write to them yet as we are not given much time to ourselves. Yesterday afternoon they called for two men, we didn’t know what for but I was right there ready for service. That was all he wanted. Anyone minding the officers is all right, but if one does not mine he will get K.P. and I presume you know what that means that you have to wash dishes and peel potatoes.

The stuff we get to eat here is sure allright. We get the best of bread, pure white.

Well, I haven’t any more to write today, so will close. Let me hear from you at once at it will seem good to receive news from home. God bless you folks at home. From your loving son, Elvin Weflen, 5th Provisional Training Regiment, Co. “I” Camp Grant, Ill.