World War I letter from a soldier hospitalized as the result of a gas attack immediately before the Armistice on 11 November 1918. Corporal Ernest R. Storer.

World War I letter from a soldier hospitalized as the result of a gas attack immediately before the Armistice on 11 November 1918

Mars-sur-Allier, France: 22 November 1918. This two-page letter is written on American Red Cross stationery and enclosed in an A.R.C. envelope with a double-ring Military Postal Express Service postmark (Type A4101) dated 16 Nov 1918 from Army Post Office 780 at Mars-sur-Aller. The letter and envelope are in nice shape with some minor wear. Very good. Item #008820

Storer was a corporal in the 101st Engineer Battalion which had been consolidated into the 104th Infantry Regiment of the 26th (Yankee) Division. In this post-armistice letter sent to “Dear Isabelle” apparently in care of his mother at Yarmouthville, Maine, Storer recounts the joy felt by the doughboys at the moment the big guns stopped firing, but also describes his injuries from a last minute German gas attack: “I got a few doses of gas a few hours before the end, and they told me it would be best to go to the hospital. It gives one a funny feeling, a sore throat, a headache, and at time after exerting oneself feel dizzy. I can’t keep food on my stomach very well. Am feeling better than when I first felt the effects and guess it will wear off gradually. Just my luck to run up against something like this after getting by safely for mone than six months. . . finally knocked me out.” Storer probably inhaled either chlorine or phosgene as he does not mention the horrible blister burns that would have been caused by mustard gas. He also probably wasn’t joking about “getting by safely for six months.” The 26th Division saw extensive combat and fought in the Champagne-Marne, Aisne-Marne, Saint-Mihiel, and Meuse-Argonne campaigns. American Expeditionary Force letters home describing the effect of gas attacks are few and far between; a letter describing the effect of a gas attack that occurred on the day of the Armistice is likely unique.

Price: $250.00

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