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The Betty H. Carter Women Veterans Historical Project

Letter from Eleanor K. Peck to Poppy, 1941

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Object ID: WV0420.4.001

Description: Peck discusses the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, calling it a "miscalculation"; surmises the U.S. will enter the war soon; and thinks bombing in London likely. Other topics include her work at the hospital, the recent arrival of two more American women, the delay of mail, and loosing her hat in a blackout.

Creator: Eleanor K. Peck

Biographical Info: Eleanor K. Peck served as a pediatrician in London, England, while volunteering for the American Red Cross from 1941 to 1942 and as a member of the U.S. Army beginning in January 1943.

Collection: Eleanor K. Peck Letters

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:

Dear Poppy,

Today which marks the two month anniversary of my departure from New York brought the first letter from home, yours of the Nov. 24th. You should have had letters from me by then and surely since then, unless they have gone astray or are at the bottom of the Atlantic for I have sent an airmail every week since November the first to you, Aunt, or Ros. Anyway I was glad to finally have word and to know that you were all well and able to eat Thanksgiving dinner. I have tried to tell you just what I am doing in all the previous epistles, but if you haven't received any yet, you may be at a loss to know.

Well, it looks as though you were wrong when you said U.S. wouldn't get into this. It surely looks as though we will now. I can think of no greater miscalculation on the part of the Japs than just what they have done as far as crystallizing public opinion in American. I suppose people are madder than [unclear] at what has happened. It surely looks as though we were caught napping just like all the rest in this mess of a war.

We continue in here busy as bees taking care of the children and things remain quite quiet, but every one feels that this cannot be for long. Surely the bombs must soon descend.

I continue to be well. Two other American women arrived this week and are at the Royal Free Hospital with [Besn?] et al. Up to now I haven't met them.

I had a disaster last night. In the black-out my lovely brown hat blew off and just disappeared. Three of us plus a policeman hunted for 20 minutes or so and not a trace of it [could?] we find. Alas, my only hat! The only consolation is that hats are not rationed nor do they cost coupons, so I shall be able to recover a new one soon I hope.

Meanwhile my love to you all, Awney