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The Betty H. Carter Women Veterans Historical Project

Letter from Jean Holdridge Reeves to parents, 1945

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Object ID: WV0383.4.001

Description: Jean Holdridge Reeves, aboard a transport ship, has been shown her destination on a map. She describes the quality of the food, sewing clothes for servicemen, and showering procedures. She also notes the personal connections made and broken due to military life.

Creator: Jean Holdridge Reeves

Biographical Info: Jean Holdridge Reeves (b. 1920) of Marion, Ohio, served in the Pacific as a member of the Red Cross from 1944 to 1946.

Collection: Jean Holdridge Reeves Papers

Rights: It is responsibility of the user to follow the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Materials are not to be reproduced in published works without written consent, and any use should credit Jackson Library, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Full Text: Dearest Folks,

Haven’t written now for several days but think that enough has happened now to make something more interesting. The other afternoon while standing forward waiting for dinner the captain of the ship came out of his cabin. We got to meet him since one of the girls already knew him. He let us look through his glasses and watch the people on another ship. During the conversation we got to talking about our destination and course so he took us into the chart room and showed us some of the maps. Later on I’ll be able to tell you more about what I’ve seen. This was only one big thing in the day and although it was the greatest event. I felt quite fortunate to have a friend invite me for a coke that same afternoon. For some reason it tasked especially good.

Washed my hair this morning before breakfast and you’d hardly know your blonde daughter. The last time I used cold water but today had hot water and lemon rinse even. Before the morning meal I had also done my washing and indulged in a delightful hot salt water shower. Guess you don’t want to take too many of those salty showers or they you is even worse than “Chicago bath itch”.

Think I wrote you about making a fatigue cap for one of the GI’s. One of the officers liked it so well I had another job yesterday. Oh for the Singer!

We’ve been having plenty of fresh fruit all the way— apples, oranges, and grapefruit. Have had several pineapple desserts too. Are fruit points still so high?

The Phillipine news sounds quite good so far. We get little snatches of it—first word at dinner last night practically upset the dinning hall.

Mother, is that little booklet coming home which tells about the literary guild books?

Bettie found a college friend of her the other morning and we were quite excited about it. Just about as good as finding one of my own. We’re going to be might sad girls when the separation day comes as it must, I suppose. Our life seems to be full of hellos and goodbyes.

Had planned to write more but think I’ll close and get it moving so you’ll be hearing and knowing how much I’m thinking about you.

Lovingly, Jean