facebook tracking pixel Claude: That new actress, Bacall, is unusual | TheUnion.com

Claude: That new actress, Bacall, is unusual

Editor’s Note: Claude Dawson writes to his wife, Nadine, about his taste in movies. He’s running low on cigarettes and has been sick; she’s on vacation in Portland, Ore.

Near the end, Claude uses an ethnic slur that we have deleted.

For more on these letters from a homesick Navy man to his wife in San Francisco, how The Union came to have them and to see previously published letters, visit http://www.theunion.com and click on the WWII Love Letters icon.

n n n


5 April 1945

Dearest Sweetheart:

This letter should just about coincide with your arrival in Portland, that is if you have good luck on your plane priority. I bet you will have a wonderful time, the first reason being as free as a birdie and not having to think about being back at work. That thought would ruin anyone’s vacation. Its too bad tho that you always go to Portland when its raining, I imagine now that spring is in full bloom that it rains every day. Its been pretty good here lately, rained just enough to keep the dust down. But when you come right down to it I believe I prefer the rain to the dry spells. Its so sticky when its hot.

Just came back from lunch we had roast veal, mashed potatoes and ice tea. No dessert, so had a piece of jelly and bread. The veal was good, at least it was’nt that Aussie stuff. Last night they showed “To Have or Have Not”, it was good, but I don’t think it could compare with “Casa Blanca”, do you? That new actress Bacall is certainly unusual, although they shouldn’t have spread it on so thick by having her sing, sounded like Dietrich, also bad. They showed a Walt Disney short and I really enjoyed that, you know me. The other night they showed a “Tree Grows In Brooklyn”, but it was so crowded I did’nt stay, so just saw the first part of it. Where in the devil did they get James Dunn? He was thru before he started 15 years ago.

Had the other afternoon off but did’nt do anything but lie in my bunk as I’ve bee sick since Easter. We had eggs for breakfast Easter morning and there must have been something wrong with the one I ate as I got sick Sunday night. Went over to sick bay twice. Did’nt feel well until last night. My stomach is still abit weak, but I’m back to normal again.

We’ve had a shortage of cigarettes lately in fact I’m down to my last 5 packs, and am starting to get panicky. Nothing worse than I can think of, is to run out of cigarettes. The worst part is that every one runs out at the same time. Therefore you can’t borrow any. There is a slight chance that they may go on sale tomorrow, if the supply arrives.

Did you take care of everything before leaving home, I.E., the electrical plugs, rent, mail, etc.? I know you did cause your smart, but if you got in a hurry you might forget. When you get home, I want you to have the piano tuned, that is if you can find a tuner. Sissie is really very lucky to have you and you Mamamama come all the way up from San Francisco to sweat for her. It will help a lot. If she has twins don’t tell her and just take one. She won’t know the difference when she comes out of the anathesia. See if you can find me a good pare of snipper-snappers while your there, I’m still using these that are wired togeather. But be sure not to send me anymore food.

Incidentally we don’t have a scale and I have’nt weighted myself since arriving but I’m quite sure I lost somemore weight. I may be down to 180 now, I hope. Especially this week, as I’ve hardly eaten anything since Sunday noon. Tell Patty not to forget that E Major Chopin Etude. One of Chopin’s most beautiful compositions. If she ever gets a chance to learn it she will have accomplished a major feat. I’m watching for that picture on Chopin’s life. Its playing around here someplace and hope to see it soon. Life mag. says that they cut his life up in true Hollywood fashion, which is of course typical of those (deleted) producers who would change the life of Christ around if they could make money-story out of it.

We’ve been given permission to go surf swimming if we so desire, but few fellows have gone. You have to be so careful with your ears in this weather especially when your in water. So it really isn’t worth it. Of course taking showers so often your bound to get your ears wet, but then your able to dry them out good right away.

Sure hope I received a coupld of letters this afternoon Darling, as I did’nt get any yesterday. Have a wonderful time and spend all the money you want, thats what is for. Give everyone my love.

Love and Kisses

From your



Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Grass Valley and Nevada County make The Union’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.