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Charles Higgins Letter


Trier, Germany


 and printed in the "Emmetsburg Democrat", Emmetsburg, Palo Alto Co., Iowa, 29 January 1919




Thought His Time Had Come, But Germans Had Numbers of His Companions

Carl Berger has just received the following letter from Charles Higgins, son of Mr. and Mrs. J.J. Higgins, which was written at Trier, Germany on January 4:

Dear Cousin Carl:

    Well, here I am in the poor house at last. There is some paper I secured at the home for the destitute at Trier where we stayed for a few days. The members of our company were billeted there. A few of us had rooms in a
private house. The people treated us fine. They invited us to supper Christmas eve and dinner on Christmas day and coffee drinking, as they call it, last night. There are four girls in the home ranging from 17 to 23 years of age. They are fine cooks. They sang for us and they asked us to return the compliment. As luck would have it, the other boys who are with me had some talent in that line, so we got  out pretty well.
     We have not received any letters for about three months. We get our mail in bunches. My Christmas package has not yet arrived but a letter from home states that it was sent.
     I see by a copy of the Ayrshire Chronicle dated November 7, which came a few days ago, that they had a big celebration at home. The article said, in the large head lines, that the armistice was signed at 3 o'clock that day.

    My companions kidded me about the item. Many of our company went down to death after that date. We were bringing ammunition up to the batteries that forenoon. I thought my time had come but the enemy had other soldiers' numbers. One of the young men I came over with was killed on the truck ahead of me and six others were wounded.
   The second day I went to the front at Chateau Thierry we picked up a couple of lads who had been hit by shells just in front of us. One had his leg shot off above the knee. I took my belt and put it around the limb to keep him
from bleeding to death. When we reached the dressing station we carried him in. As we were leaving, he requested us not to forget his helmet, but I guess the poor fellow did not live to wear it again. We had to move dead horses to get through the lines. That was my first day's experience on the Chateau Thierry front.
      Reports say that we shall soon be going home as the second army is coming up to relieve us. We are about twenty miles from Coblenz. We stayed there three days. It is a place of 85,000.



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