Letter from France to cousin in Canada
Private collection published Monday, November 03, 2014
Monday, January 24, 1916
Transcribed by: Tom Reitz
Ira Henry Huehn was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. His father, however, was originally from Waterloo County and Ira had several aunts, uncles and cousins who lived in Berlin, Ontario (the city was renamed Kitchener in September 1916). One of Ira's cousins was Edith Reitz - who was my great aunt. Edith kept a scrap book that includes obituaries, newspaper clippings, letters and poetry. Included in the scrapbook is this letter from Ira; two Field Service Post Cards - he stroked out everything but "I am quite well" on each card; and copies of two letters sent to his Mother upon his death explaining the circumstances under which he was killed in action.
Dear Cousin Edith: -
Was very glad on arriving back at Camp to-day to find a letter from you in my mail. I was lucky to-day received five, and you will have to pardon me if I don't write as long a one as I received from you as you see all I receive I have to answer and I have quite a correspondence and then too I can't tell you any news as the Miltary Postal Laws are very strict and any information or news to the outside world would be severely punished, such as telling you how many troops there are here or how many batteries of guns or how large the guns are or where I am now, so you can see there is not much I can tell you. I am quite well and my operation of last Summer doesn't bother me at all. I was weighed lately and am 159. a good weight for me. France is a nice country truly the people seem so funny and such odd houses and horses pull such huge loads in this country on such odd wagons. I could sure write a small book on what I have seen. However I'll have to wait till I see you and then it will be easier telling you than writing.
I can imagine what a good time you had at Xmas. It was a Xmas for me which I will never forget. Xmas in France in a camp and among a strange people and whose language I can't understand or talk, believe me it was something to remember.
Tell George Bramm for me that I received his cakes and thank him for me. I seem to think I wrote him but I'm not sure. my mind isn't as clear as it was.
This certainly is an awful war. I wish the people of Canada could be in France for an hour and see what the war means to this country.
Believe me there is no one wishes this war was over more than the soldier who is engaged in it. but I guess there will be "something doing" this Spring and then we shall see.
Remember me to all the Berlin folks and sometime ago I rec'd a huge box of bon-bons and I want to thank whoever sent them very much. they were delicious and very much appreciated. Will write soon again
your loving cousin
Please excuse any errors or omissions as I am not reading this over.