Thursday, August 26, 2010


Soldiers have written home to comfort and console their loved ones since Plutarch wrote to Timoxena during the wars of Alexander the Great. Their letters tell us of their lives, their thoughts, their fears and hopes -- a window into who they are. And we are losing them, to email, Facebook, and cell phones, aides that have become replacements.

This letter is a V-mail written by Lieutenant Jordan to his mother from his foxhole in Belgium in World War II. A V-mail was a letter that was written, microfilmed, and sent with thousands of others on a thin strip of film to save space and weight on the boats crossing between the United States and the war zones. Sharing these letters opens up this window for all of us.
If you have a letter from your parents or your family written while they were in our service, any time from the Civil War to Afghanistan, and are willing to share it, please send me a note at And, whether you do or don't have one to share, please see what others have already contributed at The Letters Project, a new website we have created for you to share, browse, and enjoy at

See you soon.