[NOTE: Transcription is true to all misspellings, grammar errors and such found in the originals of these letters]
The Frans Family Writes to Gene Applegate, 1918
Nov. 17 18
[American eagle insignia]
Dear Friend Gene:
Will straddle my pen & gallop you off a few lines as I have your address & lots of time but not much news. How does it seem to be back in the U.S. Would sure like to see you & have a good talk. Bet you could tell a fellow some eh?
We had quite a rain yesterday & this morning so wont have to husk corn for a while. I hate to lose the time for we wanted to finish up about Tuesday. Have about 3oo bu.yet owing to the dry weather. The corn wasnt so good this year but guess we will have close to 2000 bu. In all. I just came back from town a while ago rode Blackie [Blacky is a horse on their farm] over after mail. I got a letter from Bud Lindsey this a.m. He is near San Frisco on a training ship she is in Merchant Marines. He went out to Cal. With two other fellows & myself & joined there (in Sept.) I tried to get in Navy out there but they wouldnt let me on account of me being in draft age. We heard from Forrest about two wks ago & he was in France then said he saw Frank Wolfe, Frank Mead & Jim A. there. Forrest is in M.G.A. now or was then I suppose hes filling shell holes now.
There was some celebration in Union Mon. & at Nehawka tho they made some Germans march around a camp fire as close to it as they could without burning themselves then they were made to give a talk & kiss the American flag.
Well will try & finish my letter I started about an hour ago suppose you will be more interested in how things are on the farm than anything else I could write about. Well the wheat looks fine since the rainy season started in & the well is fresh & giving plenty since it rained but was dry before & we had to take our stock down to Factorville to water. The crib that stood at north end of lot blew over & we had to build another one. Guess thats about all. I suppose you will be home before long wont you? Hoping to hear from you, or better yet see you in the near future. I am
Harry Tipton, Carl Frans and Arthur and Fred Lindsay left Monday afternoon for an extended trip thru California and other western states. Plattsmouth Journal, August 26, 1918 Picture
Carl Frans arrived home last Thursday from his western trip. He spent most of his time in California and while there visited at the homes of his relatives, Will Wolfe and Mrs. J. Cross. He was well pleased with the country, but decided he liked Nebraska folks the best. Plattsmouth Journal, October 7, 1918
Dec. 1st 1918
Received your letter thanksgiving day & was sure glad to hear from you & to know that you are able to be around some & expect to be home soon. You have sure had a time of it. Didnt you get wounded in June? Gee thats a long time to lay around. I couldnt stand it that long. Ill bet you went thru some gloomy old days. Did you let them take the bullet out of your leg?
We got a letter from Forrest yesterday & he said he was feeling fine but it was written Nov. 7 so he didnt say anything about coming home. He is in France yet.
Simon Gruber was home on a 7 day furlough he went back the day before Thanksgiving. I took him to City Tues nite to see Helen Heafey so I went along & Rosemary showed me a good time. (some Jane she is). I went to a big dance at Neb City thur nite sure was a crowd there had a fine time. I dance with your old girl Fern P. & she wanted to know about you & ask if you mentioned her name when you wrote me. Say boy I believe she likes you yet. I heard she was sorry the way she treated you down there, last winter you know she went to dance with that other guy. I went to Omaha Friday drove a car up for Propst he took 3 up & sold them for junk sure had a time getting up there with them. We started about 9 am & got there about 7 P.M. The roads were sure a fright it snowed here about 4 inches Wed. nite & the roads are pretty bad now.
You ask me how I liked the West. I like the country fine but not the ways of the country too many foreigners there for me. Doe Lynde came home last nite to stay until they call him. He is a 1st or 2nd Lieutenant now. Mrs. Baldwin was buried yesterday. Clarence want able to leave Camp Dodge to come home to funeral. There are about 40 new cases of "Flu" in City I heard this morning. I thot it was about stamped out but guess not well that is about all the news I can scrape for this time so ans soon. & Ill do the same.
Word received from Forrest and Kemper Frans a few days ago, informed their relatives here they were on their way to France. Plattsmouth Journal, July 15, 1918
Mrs. J.H. Frans received a card last week from a nurse in an American hospital in France stating that her son Forrest was confined there. The report did not state whether he was sick or wounded and all his friends here are awaiting a reply from him and hoping that his condition is far from serious. Plattsmouth Journal, August 19, 1918
Mr. and Mrs. J.H. Frans received word Tuesday from their son Forrest that he has arrived in the state and will soon be on his way home. Plattsmouth Journal, February 13, 1919
Prt. Forrest Frans, who landed in the States last week is now in Camp Funston, Kansas, awaiting his discharge. Plattsmouth Journal, February 17, 1919
Feb. 28, 19.
Will write you a few lines and mail it with Johns letter. Got your address from Grace am sure glad you are getting along O.K.
Would like awfully well to see you. I came home the 14th of this month and it has been bad weather ever since. Jene do you remember the letter you wrote me or card rather. I believe it was written in Sept. and I got it the last of Nov. and I wrote you a letter a mile long the same day and the next day I got a letter from home saying you was in the States. Dont suppose you `ever got it.
I got one letter from Robert Roddy while I was over there.
I left Brest the 23rd of January & landed at New York the 1st of Feb. went to Camp Mills and stayed about a week and was sent to Funston to be mustered out. I was sure surprised that Kemper beat me home I thot he was in England. Well I think skating aught to be fine now down to Grubers. Maybe will go down today and see if I can skate. Went to Omaha last Sunday come back Monday midnight. Will close with best of luck to you.
John Frans returned home from Grant last Friday. His cousin, Carl Frans, who went west with him is still there and running a tractor on a farm. Plattsmouth Journal, April 21, 1919
Feb. 28, 1919
Dear Friend Eugene,
Well I suppose you think it is something new to get a line from me but Forrest was just going to write so I thought I would put a line in. How are you making it I heard you were operated on are you getting along all right hope you will be home soon you came home on furlo. I left the day you came well old top Ill tell you it shore is cold out here now you had better hurray up and come home so you can go skating. Well how did thins look to you here when you were home not much good did they dident look good to me I am out to Forrest now you had ought to been here last night had some crap game. Well I got my discharge and boy I shore was glad to get it to seemed like year since I were home but wasent very long guess I will go to work next week that is if I get up enough [ambition]cant tell you know the army makes a pretty lazy man out of you at least it has me all I want to do is sleep and I shore do to I havent done a thing yet I havent been free from any 3 day that isent long how do you like it out there it is nice and warm out there isent it at least it was at D.C. You know I was there for a quiet a while I hated to leave there Well Eugene I must close so drop me a line if you have time.
As ever you Friend