Offered here are four letters from Frankie and James Pacheo to their parents in Arlington, MA. Each is approximately 8 ½” x 10 and very readable. Archive includes ten envelopes with stamps, some with the U.S. Army postmark and some with the Naval Censor’s stamp of approval.” Archive also includes a single letter from a relative, apparently written in a combination of languages, that, in essence, states the person’s interest in coming to America where he can make a better living cutting hair and asking for the funds to travel.
Four-pages, December 7,
1944, exactly three years from the Pearl Harbor attack, from son Frankie to
Mom, Pop, Dee & Al, in part, “…I’ll bet you felt like telling them
customers just where to go that raining day when they entered the store just to
keep dry…I don’t see how you girls take all that lip from them cranky
customers…Boy Pop must have had you all scared when he said Sandy was going to
have pups. I know Sandy is enough to handle without getting more like her…
“…I haven’t heard from Jim…I had a feeling his ship was in on that Philippines battle. I guess you did too. That war correspondent couldn’t have been on a better ship from what Jim says his ship is the best and that goes for the crew too. It must be because it hasn’t received a scratch all the time it’s been out there…I’m glad he’s back in New Guinea but I’ll bet the heat is knocking him out. It doesn’t look like either one of us will be home this Christmas…Eddie Gigliotti is out in New Guinea some place. I wrote him and gave him the name of Jim’s ship…
“…The gang of us sleep in one tent, are all fine and they said to say hello to you. There’s one feller here from Delaware who has a cousin that lives in Weymouth. He says they live on the second street on the right after going over the bridge…
“…I believe Mom is keeping an eye on my love affair. If I don’t stop bawling out Mary, it’s liable to go on the rocks…I hope she understands that I don’t really mean it when I do bawl her out. I don’t know why I do. She certainly is a swell kid and I know I don’t want to lose her.
“…The weather is still the same here, rainy, cold and always damp. I still have this darn cold and I’m having a hell of a time getting rid of it. My throat has been pretty sore… the doctor…told me to quit smoking—so I quit…”
Letter is in black ink. Tears repaired with archival tape. Else fine.
Letter number two: Dated August 20, 1945, also from Frankie, in pencil. In part: “…After working all day, then going out at nights or to the movie, there isn’t much time to write…I have some good news. I know I’ll be home by the end of September so once more I want you to stock up the ice box with fresh milk and for god sake don’t hug me to death…The war is over and its’ a good thing it is or I’d be over here longer. We were doing essential work! Now they will stop sending men and equipment to the Pacific and start sending us all home…
“…I see by the papers that you people back home really celebrated the end of the war and so did we. The club was open until two A.M. and everybody was talking about going home—and getting drunk as hoot owls at the same time…Joe just about passed out and I had to bring him to camp, undress him and put him to bed. He woke up with a big head!
“I was eating in the G.I. restaurant on Via Roma and this feller in the next table looked familiar to me but I couldn’t place him…We both recognized each other at the same time…His name is Bob Greene. Do you remember him? He has a sister named Miriam and he use(d) to live in the second house around the corner of Exeter St…He told me Harry Doherty was killed…I’m going up there Friday to see him if I can get a truck. He told me Tony Arelio is here in Naples some place too…
Tears repaired with archival tape. Else fine.
Letter number three: Dated Nov. 2, 1945, from Jimmy, who was in the Coast Guard, statioed in Alameda, California, in pen: “…There’s no reason why I shouldn’t be a civilian in a few months.
“Well, what’s everyone doing besides crying because I wasn’t home for Thanksgiving? Here I was thinking that Mom & Pop would be happy because Frankie was home…What’s the lady killer doing besides trying to date every girl he meets?
“…I’m having quite a time. You can always find something to do in Frisco. Saw a good movie the other day, “Stork Club” Betty Hutton. Don’t miss it…”
Letter has some tears reinforced with archival tape.
Letter number four: Dated Nov. 4, 1945, also from Jimmy: “…What’s Romeo doing with himself?...Looks like the Coast Guard will add on points instead of lower(ing) them. I still can’t see how they haven’t lower(ed) them like the Navy’s doing. You can expect anything from this outfit…
“…There’s nothing for us to do here so we go see movies every morning. That kills the morning, in the afternoon we go kick the football around. What a life!!”
Letter has some chipping on the edges and some tape repairs.
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