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Ancestral Photographs of Upstate New York

by Roxy Triebel
treebz65@hotmail.com


Pvt. Gordon Van Kleeck

Co. F. 51 Pioneer Inf.

American Expeditionary Forces

Part 10



Woldereninger
Nov. 22.

The fellows on furlough came in at Treiux (Trieux) last night.  They reported a fine time.  We left there about 8 A.M. and at 8:15 we crossed the German border.  I am sleeping in the hall of a deserted hotel on the floor with Sparling.  The names of the towns we passed through today were too long for me to remember.  But I noticed that there were quite a number of people in them and some of the stores seemed to have plenty of things for sale.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 23

We hiked to about two oclock today and I am billeted with a lot of other fellows in a barn in a town named Aspelt.  We have plenty of straw for a bed.  Mays and I are bunking together.  We are in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the people seem very nice.  There are plenty of cafes here and a small store.  We can buy candy but it is very expensive.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 24

We are still in Aspelt and I dont know when we move again.  I was on a detail with some other fellows to wash and grease the wagons today.  It was not a very nice job for the weather is cold and we had to use cold water.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 25

Still in Aspelt and would like to get out.  It has rained here all day and we have no place to go and nothing to do.  We cant go in the cafes and it is cold in the barn.  They have put guards on all the cafes and I am on guard detail for tonight.  We are going to drill a couple hours each day.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 26

I was on guard last night and my post was the supplies.  Had plenty to eat while there and when I came off post at 2 A.M. I took a loaf of bread, two cans of jam, two cans of mock turtle soup, one can of Welsh rarebit, candles and matches with me.  Might as well take enough to last a while.  Was off guard detail at one oclock and went to help Sparling shoe horses.  We are shoeing all the horses for the 2nd battalion in a blacksmith shop in this village.  The tools are very poor but we manage to do a little work.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 27

I have worked all day in the shop.  It rained all day and the Company had to drill for a while just the same.  I had to use old nails and it was hard work but better than drilling out in the mud.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 28.

It is Thanksgiving Day and I have not been working.  Have been writing letters part of the day.  We can write now where we are and what we are doing.  Also wherever we have been since coming over.  The Company had a goose dinner today.  Ten geese was all (that) could be bought and it hardly gave us each a taste.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 29

Last night Mays and I went through the rain to Mondorf les Bains.  It was about three or four kilometres away.  We were in a few stores but could not get anything we wanted until we came to a small restaurant.  There we got consomme and hot waffles.  The waffles were good but I did not like the consomme.  Worked in the shop again today but not very hard.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Nov. 30.

Last night some of us went to a farmhouse and had our supper.  It was not a fancy meal but plain good food and plenty of it.  It cost us each five francs and they had fifteen or twenty fellows there tonight.  Today the Company hiked down to Modorf les Bains and took a bath in the sulphur baths there.  Sparling and I were not able to go as we had to work all day.


Aspelt, Luxembourg
Dec. 1

Adams and I took a walk to a small town near here named Frisance this morning.  Nothing there except a battalion of M.P.s.  I was detailed in the kitchen for this afternoon because of a slip I made in the manual of arms.  Was excused noon time.  I went to the Captain and asked for permission for Sparling and I to go to Mondorf for a bath.  He said he was not allowed to let any of his men go out of town but he would not watch us to see that we did not go.  We went down and bathed in the sulphur swiming pool.  Afterward we visited some of the stores.  I had to pay six francs for a piece of cloth for a towel.  We came back and went to the farm house for supper.  Their bread is made of whole wheat I think but is fairly good.  They have no coffee but make a drink of roasted grain.  It is very good with milk and sugar.


Wormadange, Lux.
Dec. 2.

Sparling and I started to shoe a horse in the shop this morning and were stopped by the Major as he said the man was charging five dollars a day for the shop and that was too much.  We found a few old tools and put one shoe on before dinner.  Started to shoe the horses on our kitchen and orders came to move.  We started about two oclock and hiked to eight oclock that night.  Part of the way along the Moselle River.  Seven of us are billeted in a house in a large town named Wormadange.  The people here are very nice and as our kitchen was not here yet we asked the woman if she could get us a supper.  We had the best feed I have had since leaving the States for five francs and I am going to sleep in a room by a fire.  Hope we can stay here a few days.



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Gordon's Journal part 11:  Conz, Germany to Wengerohr



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