Otto CW Kappelmann to Anna-Marie Bubendey


Otto CW Kappelmann to Anna-Marie Bubendey


Kappelmann, Otto Carl Wilhelm, 1888-1960




1918 August 17


Daniel Metraux


World War, 1914-1918




Camp Wadsworth, So. C.

My dear Anna-Marie,

Your nice, long letter of the 14— inst. arrived yesterday and interested me very much. Was very glad to hear from you again; many thanks.

Everything here is just about the same as ever and absolutely nothing of interest has occurred since my last letter to father which, no doubt, you have read. However, I want to let you know that your letter arrived and that I’m feeling fine.

From enclosed newspaper clipping you will note that my former outfit has been in action. Lt. Colonel Liebmann certainly was a very efficient and popular man. He took hold of me the day I enlisted in the N.Y. National Guard in 1910 and gave me my first drill instructions. At that time he was a second lieutenant. He was also in command of our Regiment while we were at Van Cortlandt Park last summer.

Sorry to hear that you also had such a hot spell but hope that the weather has cooled off a little, as it has down hear here. Yes, that surely was a sizzling time and the natives say it was the hottest spell they every had down here. Funny, we always seem to strike the hottest or the coldest, the dryest or the wettest, wherever we go and I’ve come to believe that the natives are trying to josh us at times! Last winter, you know, was supposed to have been the coldest, and the summer of 1916 on the Border the wettest. Anyway there’s some good to everything—it provides something to talk or brag about!

Monday evening saw a vaudeville show at the Camp Liberty Theatre which was quite good; Tuesday had supper at the Hostess House in Camp which is run by the YWCA. The food is very good, prices reasonable, and after supper we sat in great big rocking chairs on the screened veranda which was quite a treat. Thursday evening took a walk, visited our new ice plant which is now beginning to supply the camp with ice. It is quite interesting to see how ice is produced, everything very simple.

A large refrigerator is connected with same and the temperature in there is never above 34 degrees, even on the hottest day. It’s funny to see the fellows wear winter overcoats in there when everyone else outside is melting away. After that saw a movie. Yesterday evening, Friday, took a trip to town for a change, hadn’t been there for about three weeks. Saw another movie and got back ‘home’ early.

You asked me about the furlough. Well, can’t say that things look very favorable in this respect. All furloughs were cut out some time ago by order of the commanding General of this camp,—reason unknown. Yesterday, however, a bulletin was published stating that all men having had two years consecutive service w with no furlough during that time may apply for a vacation. I’ve had the 2 yrs. service but also had a furlough, so don’t fit in there. However, one can never tell in advance and as my application is for 15 days from Sept. 30 th things might change by that time for better or worse. You see, it is impossible to make any definite plans in advance in the Army. I recently read a story in which a fellow had ‘nostralgia‘. Looking the word up in the dictionary I find it means ‘homesick’. Guess I ‘ll tell the C.O. that I’ve got a bad case of ‘nostralgia‘; he might think that’s a serious sickness of some kind and O.K. the furlough! That would be some joke, eh? At any rate he couldn’t accuse me of lying in case he should find out what it meant!

Sorry to hear that you and Rhoda were not well during the hot spell but hope both of you have entirely recovered by this time. It certainly is fine that Miss Capelle can keep you company and help you out; it is certainly very good of her.

No doubt father will return to the city to-day or to-morrow; the rest must have done him a lot of good. Hope the water shortage will not become acute in Liberty. Be sure to keep your well covered all the time; the people around here are being cautioned in this respect.

Glad to hear that Paul is getting along nicely; how much does he weigh now?

I was glad to get your ideas about my serving in this country, i.e. not going ‘over-seas’. Well, I’m not doing much just now, in fact haven’t been doing hardly anything lately as there is too much help in our office at present. That, of course, is rather unsatisfactory, but I’ve asked for work without success, so it isn’t my fault if I’m sitting around most of the day. At any rate, as already stated in previous letters, I will not make any attempt to change before getting my furlough, at which time we can talk things over. There are some things which I cannot discuss in my letters, as you can readily understand.

I certainly do not believe in being pessimistic and, of course, would be highly delighted to get home again, that is after things have been satisfactorily settled on the other side, but I cannot see how that time can be very near at hand. The way things look now, it won’t be over before another year at least unless something very unexpected happens. Of course, no one knows and everything is a guess.According to rumours we will soon have nothing but (Slavs). Slavs down here; a Slavic Legion is to be organized. Of course, the officers will, no doubt, be Americans. Suppose they will be used in Russia after a while.The reason John Ferguson’s brother didn’t write sooner is, no doubt, due to the fact that they were not permitted to write sooner. Many people have been wondering about that and I guess that must be the cause.

Carl Jellinghaus must have a pretty good job; is he is Government Service? I suppose so, but not as an enlisted man? Yes, I will write him in case he sends a wedding announcement.

Well, that’s about all for to-day.

With love to you.


P.S. Soldiers are going in and out of this camp right along. Things keep moving right along. For instance, just now right outside of our office a regiment is marching away, probably for 'Over There'; a bunch of fellows in civilian units are waiting to be discharged on account of physical disability, etc. and third bunch is straggling in – recruits coming in for training. And all this is getting repeated again and again; and not only here but in a lot of other camps at the same time! Otto

Original Format



Bubendey, Anna-Marie Kappelmann, 1887-1986





Kappelmann, Otto Carl Wilhelm, 1888-1960, “Otto CW Kappelmann to Anna-Marie Bubendey,” 1918 August 17, WWP18925, Otto Kappelmann Letters, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Staunton, Virginia.