Making History: Transcribe is made possible in part by federal funding provided through the Library Services and Technology Act program administered by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

James A. Harris to Family, Letter, September 10, 1945.

image 2 of 11

Zoom in to read each word clearly.
Some images may have writing in several directions. To rotate an image, hold down shift-Alt and use your mouse to spin the image so it is readable.

This transcription is complete!

2. know where we were going until we were out about 3 days, then the word started going around that we were going to Saipan. On the 8th we crossed the International date-line & every body who had not crossed it before got their head shaved--free of charge. 2 days later, the 10th we arrived at Eniwetok Atoll which is in the Marshall Islands. We were anchored there over-night & then started out again. On the 13th at about 6:00 P.M. we arrived at Tinian Is. in the Marianas. We unloaded a bunch of seabees there & then shoved off for Saipan which is only 6 miles from there. On the morning of the 14th I debarked at Saipan along with 53 other radiomen & we were taken to the Naval base in army trucks driven by Jap prisoners. After standing around outside a building for about 2 hours and haggling with a rough looking character who turned out to be the officer of the day, he finally found out what we were doing there (we didn't even know ourselves--and still don't) and sent us to a barracks. Our barracks was a 2 story outfit called a "Quonton hut" & was screened in all the way around. This was very nice for helping to keep mosquitos & snakes out, but was very hard on the guy who had to clean up the joint 3 times a day--namely, me, because the dust came in just like there were no walls at all, and believe me there was plenty of dust. I think I told you about my "hardships" there, so I won't go into that. There were a lot of Japs still up in the hills, but they were so well hidden and tricky that there were always more of our men killed than there