Jan 7, 1918
Dear Little Sis,
     Just a few lines to let you know that I am still kicking and feeling fine. I
received a letter from you some little while ago but have had very little time
to answer it before now. We received the fine boxes which you and Laura sent
us and I sure did enjoy everything. I sure do thank you for the pen, I have been
wanting one but have not had an opportunity to get one. All our mail has to be
written in ink, so a fountain pen sure does come in handy.
     What do you think of Russ and Artie getting married? I suppose you
remember what they had to say about my marrying Dids and then leaving. I
think he has me beaten just about four ways to Sunday. Donít you? He was to
yellow to enlist before the draft and then when the fact that he would be
drafted became inevitable he was to yellow again to wait and be put in
whatever branch of the service they wanted him in so he enlisted in something
which he thinks is not dangerous. But you just wait.
     He and Carl were the only two fellow whom I know that I wanted to see
drafted and I sure did pull hard for them. I suppose you know why. They tell
me that Carl and Deanne had some sort of a smash up. She said that he could
have his choice of her and the Army. This was before I left and I guess she still
feels the same way. Boy how I would like to marry a girl like that.
     I had been out this afternoon and it was rainy and nasty and I was
feeling pretty blue but when I came in and found about six letters from Dids
and one from home I felt a little better. And then when I opened one and
learned of the ďyellow birdsĒ I felt fine. Itís funny how any thing like this will
make you feel so much better, isnít it?
     Well Helen how are you and Check getting along? I hope you are feeling
as fine as I am. You canít imagine how I have gained, I have nearly outgrown
all of my clothes. Of course that isnít saying much but then I feel so much
better than I did that I just imagine that I must weigh about a ton.
     Well there isnít a bit of news that I can write about except that which I
have already mentioned. That is that I am well and getting along alright, so I
will close and try to scratch off a few lines to my better half.
     Give my love to everyone and donít worry. With love to you both,
          Devotedly,
          Jim

Pvt. Lewis J. Matthews
165th Field Hospital
117th Sanitary Train
A.E.F. via N.Y.
Letter is addressed to
Mrs. Helen Maddox
633 Elliott St. N.E.
Washington, DC USA