It came! And how! (Roscoe)

Letter transcription:

Dec. 18, 1942

Dear Mother,

Seems as if it’s only one week from Christmas so that makes only about so many shopping days until then. I was in town today and there was a definite lack of any kind of decorations. There were a very few toys but all of a very simple nature. I saw one bubble blowing outfit and one set of Jacks. No trains dolls etc. Maybe it’s the usual thing and maybe it’s the lack of shipments into the place anyway there wasn’t much there.

The biggest surprise and I might say pleasure today was your Christmas box. It came! And how! The box was open on one end and tied with heavy fishing cord. Maybe you tied it that way and it was opened for inspection or maybe it came open and some good soul tied it up. The content, all the candy sticks were melted into one big gob. With packages of chewing gum interspersed. It was fun finding the chewing gum. The flash light was incased in a “gue” of soft. The leather mirror case had sticky on it. The billfold with the pictures was untouched. The black tie had one long streak

[page 2] of sweet all along the broad flat outside surface and the underware were colored in spots yellow and I thought David had worked on them until I smelled but it was candy. The air mail envelopes were all stuck together with candy and but the paper was untouched. I think I can use the envelopes OK however. There was no batteries for the flash light, and there is about as much chance of getting batteries here that size as there is buying a flash light in the first place. Now I’ve given the low down on the stuff. Listen Dear it was a scream you couldn’t have sent me anything more pleasing and anything that I could have gotten more kick out of. I have a flash light now that was given me by the medical department. I haven’t been wearing any underware shirts. The pants can be easily washed. We don’t wear ties anymore. I’ve gotten candy from Ruth and Boonie. The chewing gum was not spoiled and that is about the best thing you could have sent. The mirror is OK and really is one

[page 3] thing badly needed. And the pictures I like very much so really I’m tickled pink and I really did get a kick out of opening the thing even to the Kentland Democrat and the Indianapolis Star funnies. And Thanks again Dear for all the things. The candy of course had to be discarded because it was mixed with paper inside of the box etc. I really think the mail sack are used to pack with and are probably down in the ship near the engine room where it is hot and that is the reason. Some of the boys have gotten candy sealed in tin cans and it is all stuck together in a big gob. So any way you would send it would be bad. Personally I’d rather have one late letter than all the boxes. I don’t mean to be rude about the box. I really got a kick out of it and I know you couldn’t have known the condition of the shipment of the things. I’m as happy as I could be about the whole thing so please feel that your gift was appreciated and I do mean it was. There are so many packages I really don’t

[page 4]see how things are as good as they are when we know the volume of business that is going on.

The office has furnished me with the figures that will determine the Income tax (federal) that will have to be paid. The gross amount is #1,317.79. That amount added to the amount that was made up to May 20. Less deduction for rent, Interest, Office girl, social security, Insurance on the office and malpractice, insurance on car, gas and oil. Less deduction for dependencies, Tax etc will be the payable tax for 1943, payable on Mar 15. I’d like for that to be figured and if not too much be paid. For as I told you before I don’t want a lot of things hanging over to be paid because I don’t want to have to get my nose to the grind stone right away when this thing is over. You and I are going to live for a while more time for each other and if those things are hanging over to be paid in 6 mo. we’ll feel that our style will be cramped. So pay if you can. Send me the gross of those first 4 ½ months. Or rather the amount that my practice brought in. Especially that that you paid state tax on. We will have to

[page 5] use that amount for federal plus the figure I gave above. I really don’t know what deductions are given this year for dependencies. Agnes will know those things but I take it from your letters that she is in favor of putting these things off but I’m not if they can be paid. So much for that.

Got a Christmas greeting from John & Inez Ley today. Won’t have time to answer that now because it is 2300 and time I was in bed.

Deanna Durbin, c1940s (Image courtesy of Wikipedia Commons)

D. Durbin was the star in the show tonight. It rained almost all thru the show but we stayed anyway.

Again let me thank you for the package and believe me I appreciated it and I sent lots of love to you and the boys.


P.S. Remember our mail might be delayed as I told you last night but don’t worry it’s on a change in schedule

©2013 copyright owned and written by Deborah Sweeney

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5 thoughts on “It came! And how! (Roscoe)

  1. davidmadison1942

    What a mess that package was…and he was probably right about the mail bags being near the engine room on the ship.

    “the underware were colored in spots yellow and I thought David had worked on them until I smelled but it was candy.” Definitely my dad’s sense of humor! 🙂

    Love it: “You and I are going to live for a while more time for each other and if those things are hanging over to be paid in 6 mo. we’ll feel that our style will be cramped.”

    That Deanna Durbin photo is SO 1940s Hollywood!

  2. Sheryl

    It’s fun to sense his excitement as he opened the package. I love how he describes the melted candy interspersed with the gum, and encasing the flash light. What a wonderfully vivid word picture!

  3. Linda Arthur Tejera

    Deanna Durbin is one of my favorite actresses! I loved her in “It Started with Eve,” “Three Smart Girls,” and “Lady on a Train.” He didn’t say which of her movies they showed. I wonder if he liked it? 🙂

    1. Genealogy Lady Post author

      My dad keeps telling me that his parents never really went to the movies. I don’t really know how he felt about the medium in general. I would agree that he was probably going to see the shows because they were the only entertainment around. It was either that or nothing.


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