San Pedro, California
September 14, 1918
My dear Mother,
At last I heard from you and you certainly should have heard from me before now, for I've written very often. Also got a letter from Maude Thomas, and in the afternoon yesterday I got the comfort kit the Montague County Chapter of the Red Cross sent me. You can bet I appreciate it.
I saw Otis Sheffield the other day when I went over to "the ship" as messenger. He is a yeoman and is stationed here for good. I think he said he could get me in too, but I want to go to sea so I told him nothing doing. Lots of the fellows are giving up good places as petty officers because if they take them, they would have to stay at the station.
They had the first Annual Ball at "the ship" the other night, and all the Goofies certainly looked sadly across the 100 ft. that separated them from the celebration. Included among the guests were Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, Fatty Arbuckle, and Charlie Chaplin. I got to see all of them as they came in. You know Los Angeles has all the movie stars we used to see on the screen.
Was orderly to the Commanding Officer yesterday, and as orderlies are picked by being military looking and being clean, with shoes shined, I was proud to be taken.
We don't go out today -- are supposed now to go out Monday. One hundred and sixty-six go out.
When we woke up this morning it was misting, and we had to stand in mess line for 20 minutes and thereby ruined one white suit. It has cleared off somewhat now, so we may have sunny weather the rest of the day.
This is the morning we have inspection and everybody has to have spotless whites on, but we are off duty after 12 o'clock. I'm writing this before we go out to muster at 8, so will have to close and get on spotless.
I got a letter from Aunt Hattie yesterday explaining why they never got to see me. She says she may come to California.
(4 hours later) Well, inspection is over and we've just had mess, and visitors are beginning to come into camp from L.A. and "the ship."
Have just been invited to partake of some eats this afternoon -- a fellow from San Francisco got a package so we'll have something besides regulation food.
Went to the post office today although I knew I shouldn't get two letters in two days.
Give my love to all of the family.
(Postmarked Los Angeles, California, September 16, 1918)