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42ND RAINBOW DIVISION - AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED 12/26/1918 CO-SIGNED BY: HENRY H. HUNDLEY - DOCUMENT 276850

 

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42ND RAINBOW DIVISION, CO-SIGNED BY: HENRY H. HUNDLEY
This letter was written by an American soldier one month after the Armistice that ended World War I
Autograph letter signed "Henry H. Hundley/Lt. light T. M .B." in purple ink. 3 pages (one sheet folded, front and verso), 5¾x6½. Kruezling, Germany, Dec. 26, 1918. Addressed to "Margaret". In full: "My dear Margaret; Here we are in the Army of Occupation, Ger. From the shell town regions of France, through Belgium, Luxemburg, and a portion of Germany we have reached our destination - for a while, at least. We had a most interesting trip. This is the prettiest Coun-try I have ever seen. Since the signing of the Armistice, I have been so busy having a good time and traveling that I hardly know where I stand in my correspondence. Yesterday was the first time I have written a line for more than a month. Margaret, we are just having the time of our lives. Nothing to do but enjoy ourselves. I will not go into details of things, but wait and tell you with my own lips, I have thought of you so much of late, wondering what you are doing and if the Armistice will change your plans. Charmng Lady, I have not had a letter from you for a long time, and I am wondering what is the matter since you are at an Army camp. I am getting more home-sick every day since the Armistice, but haven't any idea when we will get away. The people around here are kind and very respectful. The American Army has made a hit every where it has gone. The people say we are better to them than their own soldiers were when they went through. Love and best wishes,". This letter was written a month after Armistice was signed on Nov. 11, 1918, ending World War I. It describes Hundley's travels through Germany during the Allied occupation after the war. Hundley, who died in 1934 in Harrisonburg, Virginia, was a member of the 117th Trench Mortar Battery of America's 42nd Infantry Division during World War I. Hundley's battery fired trench mortars, first developed by the German army during the war. These were the equivalent of modern grenade mortars; they were light and could be fired from the (relative) safety of the trenches in order to (hopefully) lob bombs right into enemy trenches. The 42nd was named the Rainbow Division because then-Chief of Staff Major Douglas MacArthur said that the division "would stretch over the whole country like a rainbow." The Rainbow Division had four infantry regiments from four states and field artillery, machine gun, hospital and other units coming from other states. It was formed in 1917 and fought its first battles alongside the French in February 1918, fighting at the battles of St. Mihiel and Meuse-Argonne, the final battle of the war, and had a significant role at the Battle of Champagne. The division suffered a total of 14,683 casualties with 2,058 killed in action. Lightly toned, soiled, stained and creased. Page has been folded in quarters; arrives folded in half. Pinholes and tears along folds. Otherwise in fine condition.


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42ND RAINBOW DIVISION   HENRY H. HUNDLEY  


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