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The Betty H. Carter Women Veterans Historical Project

Letter from Carol Goddard to her husband, 1945

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Object ID: WV0283.4.006

Description: Goddard discusses a potential job opportunity and provides details of the office and some of her duties in Rapid City. She also mentions the cold weather, the need for warmer clothing, her New Years dinner, and her new address.

Creator: Caroline M. Case Goddard

Biographical Info: Carol M. Case Goddard served in the WAC from 1944-1945.

Collection: Carol Goddard 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:

2 Jan. 45

RCAAB

My Darling -

I seems a dream that I was home with you for I'd anticipated it for so many weeks now I'm counting the days till I'll be home again.

I've a lot to tell you about the set up here. I've about concluded I'll stay in the job they assigned for it appears to me that there is to be an opening later for the control one. The young woman I spoke of as being so very likeable and considerate, tells me she is expecting her husband to return (missions completed) and when he returns she is quiting [sic], and she wants to train someone to take her place. Her job seems to have a lot of details and responsibility. She told me today never before has she taught anyone any part of it, but each day will teach me more things about it so I could take over at any time. The little WAC working there also told me the other plans to leave but she (WAC) couldn't do it as she doesn't take shorthand nor has she had typing. I think now that they were going to try me out so I could take over the larger one after learning the smaller job. In some ways it reminds me of an engineers office - things popping all the time - and it’s rough quarters, nothing fancy. I think they were surprised to find I could take shorthand as the classification Des Moines gave me did NOT give that! So today I took testimony for sworn statements from drivers of vehicles who had accidents. I'd question them and take it down, then type it after going it and condensing it and rearranging the material so it read clearly. I also typed some special reports, and learned some about the office control of all the civilian and army personnel in the motor pool. This was all in addition to the work of posting and filing of tickets, etc. with the other WAC. I did a lot of adding, too, of gas, oil, and mileages on the electric adding machine. I can see how this job won't be so monotonous once I can handle all phases. I think they like me, too. The Lt. calls me "Sis," same as Harrington used to. One thing about it, I don't feel like its in the army. It's so informal. Mrs. Haugh (the civilian in charge of whom I think is so fine) told me she and the Lt. have talked it over and he said I could get off every Saturday at 3 PM or at least in time to catch the bus from the base that will make the one to HS. and that I can have Sundays off. (If only KP will be on some other day!) I'm inclined to think, too, that if I appear dissatisfied, I may be assigned something a lot worse! After all, if I'm needed there, what's the difference? I want to help and feel I'm really doing my part to end this war, and I want to get home to the finest and kindest man in the world just as often as can.

So I rather imagine I'll be staying on there, tho [sic] I'm to see the personnel officer Friday. He told me last Friday that they didn't often get anyone who had so many qualifications and as much training as I, and it was difficult to know just where to place me, but I wasn't to stay in a spot I didn't like for I was to be happy. He said "You won't be married to the job." But if I can learn the whole set-up, it will be much more interesting, and then maybe I'll be placed in charge later. I want to stay at this base so I can go home to you, so I must make myself indispensable or at least needed. The worst part of it is that its a good mile form the barracks, and mighty cold walking to it in the mornings. We generally get rides at noon and night.

I'll bring back some sweaters to wear under my shirts next time I'm home. Wish I had some "snuggies." They don't issue them anymore. I hope to get some coveralls tomorrow as the girls there all wear them or slacks. There is only one WAC in the office besides myself, but several WAC drivers who wait for calls in the outer room with men soldiers and civilians. They used to issue long legged underwear - I could even go for them if I get the coverall - but now I'll have to get my own I guess. I want to look in the catalog when I'm home for them.

By the way, would you put that board with clip on it that's on the green file in the living room, on the bed in serving room. I want to bring it back. It's so hard to write on a little book while lieing [sic] in bed as I am now. Also, open about the 3rd drawer in tall dresser and take out that long sleeved rose wool sweater and put it on bed. And also put my nasal spray there, too. It's in the big bath closet you made which is in the original box.

You were certainly looking good when I got home. I hope you're feeling all right now, and that you didn't overdo. It seems as though I've been gone a long time since I bid you good bye late Sunday afternoon. Each day is so full.

Sunday eve when I got in, I called Ada Feigel, but she was going out, and then she invited me to New Year's dinner the next evening with her family. Her Dad remembered you as a lawyer with Bangor.

Ada had cooked the dinner and it was delicious! We had a huge duck roasted to perfection, and all the other good things to go with your holiday dinner even to the hot apple pie and cheese.

Afterwards, we went over to Scheidts. Mr. Scheidt and his brother-in-law came for us and took us to the Scheidt home. An old friend and classmate of mine, Josephine Hesnard, married Schiedt. Her brother George of California was visiting. They knew you, too. George said he saw you one time and you compared noted on losing your wife and being left with a little boy. and Helen Oitto and Josephine are good friends, and visit back and forth so they'd kept up on us. Joe even remembered when we were married. She has been but four years! We had a lot of fun talking over old times and looking at high school annuals. I even found my picture, and also Helens. Scheidt remembers me, but I don't seem to him, except I've written him a lot of letters for Harrington on our FPHA jobs as he was our "Tin Shop" contractor. (Did our metal work though his man Rossum handled it for him.) They have a lovely home in north Rapid. We ate homemade ice cream and cookies! Joe plans to ask me in some evening when she is entertaining some of her girl friends. It will be fun. She has a fine piano and likes to sing, so we plan on a song fest, then. Two parties in one evening was pretty good. I came back on the 11:30 bus arriving as the orderly office at exactly 12PM. Bed check is at 12:30, so I was in all safe and sound. I'm going to be too busy for much partying as I must study Spanish as I am to take two lessons a week. Also I must study my short hand nightly. That with writing letters and keeping my clothes up and cleaning will keep me busy evenings. So I'm glad I had two visits in one evening and saved a night. I will want to see Mrs. Lamke sometime, though, and Eliz and Mrs. South - maybe, and Helen Lampert Campbell.

Too, they have bible services here week nights and my little neighbor wants me to go with her to the chapel on the base. She went tonight but I felt sort of achey [sic] and tired, so took a hot shower and crawled in bed and rested for a while, then I started this to you.

The rope clothes line is just fine! I've wash on it I did this eve before my shower. Remember if you ever get up to RC plan to stay over a night here at the base in our guest house. You can eat at our mess and we can visit in the company day room. You could see a lot of planes. My address now is as follows:

Pvt. Caroline M. Goddard

A712156

WAC Detachment - Box 139

R.C.A.A.B.

Rapid City, So. Dak.

I had a little Christmas card from Ben Ash. He wished me a Happy New Year, and that things were coming my way. I also had a letter from the chaplain which I'll enclose for you to see - save it for my souvenirs. Ash's card too. Just lay stuff on bed and I'll put away. I plan this time to be with you more as it won't need so much cleaning. I am proud of you honey. You surely manage things fine. I was pleased to see how nice you kept things. You are a soldier, too!

All my love,

Carol