Letters from World War I

Mr. Charles Edgar Thornton, to his father Private James Edgar Thornton, February 19, 1918

Refer to caption
Pvt. James Edgar Thornton, father of Charles Edgar
Courtesy Marilyn Thornton, Thornton Family Collection


Courtesy Marilyn Thornton, Thornton Family Collection

The voice of this letter is of a five-year-old boy, Charles Edgar who went by the nickname “Bunce.” The handwriting was his mother Sarah’s. She used the stationery and stamps sent by her husband for this purpose. The father’s letter to his son sparked a bit of sibling jealousy, and Charles reported that his sister “Margarit got [mad] because you did not write to her or say any thing in my letter to tell her.” Letters could not come often enough for children or parents separated by war.

one page of a handwritten letter


no more to say this time
by by
write Soon
from your Son bunce boy

Feb the 18 1918

Dear dadie I received your most loveing letter to day and more then glad to here from you dadie I was very sorry to here that you had been sick this lave us all feeling write good how are you feeling to day dadie I hope it wont be long before you can come home to see us little sister is feeling write well only she has got a little cold dadie I saw ball the other day and she look like a little pony Mother has some money for you She has 30 dollars for you and she said that she would send you some if you would wont it dadie no [page break] sir uncle peachey dont come home every night he come home weday and some satday night dadie mother bought six 6 hens and they ways 39 pounds but she has not pays for them yet dadie I and margarit is so bad that mother hafer to hat us every day aunt Gertie said she is looking for a ancer from her letter now dadie mother got a few every day closes we children are haveing a dance to night I am going to write grand mother and tell her that I got a letter from you today dadie Margarit got made because you did not write to her or say any thing in my letter to tell her Johney send love to you Mother has ancer all the letters that she got from you lest week dadie I did not get your letter untell this morning love to you

[envelope] [postmark] ASHBURN, VA. FEB 19 1918 4 PM

Mr. James E Thornton base Hospital Ward 32 Camp Lee Va

My Fellow Soldiers