7/2/1923 separation does make a heart grow fonder

Port Arthur

July 2, 1923

My Darling Florence;

To begin with I must tell you a tragedy what has the climax and the conclusion at the Same point. This morning I was waiting, waiting, waiting for who The Postman at nine thirty I looked at my watch. It’s only 30 minutes more ’till he gets here. Then at 10 o’clock he was not here. 10:30, not here, and at eleven o’clock I saw him coming from across the street. I just knew I had some mail. I saw him count out four letters. Then I was almost positive. Smiles and cheer of my heart appeared on the scene. I went to get ’em. Two for Jesse, one for Ike and not any for me. The first time on Monday that it happened. Then the story ended just as I was beginning to see a long letter from you. But I didn’t get it. You have been so wonderful about writing that I almost knew you would write so I could start the week off right.

I could just shoot somebody. I don’t know. Ike or Jesse one. I just looked at your picture and there is an ink spot on it. Just wait till they get home. I am going to work them over. Sure made me mad. They didn’t mean to do it I am sure, but nevertheless they will be asleep when I get home tonite and look out.

There it goes again. Just 25 times already since 11:30, only 1:00 pm now. “You’ve got to see mama every nite.” Just struck here and a little bobbed haired kinkey head little girl across the street has played it at least 25 times since she came home at 11:30 with it. It’s taking the town. Today is the first time I heard it since I have been here. Ike was talking to a boy in New Orleans the other week and he says we have a new piece that just came to town and it sure is a good one. He asked him what it was and started off with “You’ve Got to See Mama Every Nite.” So you see this is some dump here. They are right up to date in everything, not far behind.

Yesterday we had nothing to do as usual so we went down to look at the Cajuns. Sure are a sight. They are a low class of French from LA. About 40% of the laborers at the refineries are composed of them. They are sure some dudes. You know some who think they are lady killers. One who works in one of the machine shops, for instance,  went to work the other day with some Valentine’s pants on. The pockets were like in overalls, extreme bell bottom. Real long and almost his his shoes which were patent leather dance pumps. He stacombed his hair and wire a silk shirt. Oh boy he was the shiek. They are a gripe to all the white people here. They sure hate ’em. One girl wrote to her sweetheart here and says Oh Dearie I would rather be lookin at ye then wroten at ye. Then they think they are really handsome.

There are lots of college men here. Most of them working on pipe lines. They sure treat ’em rough. Last nite I met a boy who I had previously met in Georgetown, who attends Southwestern. He joined our gang, made five. Then I met a boy who works in the machine shop, who had just won a box of chocolate candy at the pleasure pier. I introduced him around, we ate the candy. They he says says he that we might take a spin in his Ford. So we did. Well the nite ended with Ike writing to Jessamine.

What have you been doing with yourself my Dear? Still having a good time. I just wish I could be there. My Sunday’s are so long. I would like to do something interesting of course things are just a little more pleasant since I have met so many people. I have quite an acquaintance here now. I know just lots of the college boys but Florence Dear you know I would like to be out with some girls. I can have such a better time. Don’t you think so. Boys are good and you can have a good  time but one things gets old. It seems a year since I have seen you and it’s not quite a month. Doesn’t it seem so long. I will be so happy when I see Houston that I will rise up and yell. Darn this dump. I sure wish I hadn’t left. There is nothing here for young people. A Pleasure Pier but all the alley rats and Cajuns go there. But I must not worry just a you said my Dear, that separation does make a heart grow fonder. I have thought of you so much and wondered what you were doing. My thoughts of you almost continuously. When I look out and see the stars I can’t help but to think of you. It is time for me to go out to work now. Florence My Dear don’t forget that I love you lots and think the world of you.



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