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Title: Love Letters of a Rookie to Julie
Author: Stone, Barney
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Love Letters of a Rookie to Julie" ***

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Copyright 1919 by


All rights reserved


R.E.S., whose Suggestions made these pages possible and palatable.

[Illustration: ME ON GUARD]


IN CAMP (Somewhere between the Kitchen and the lunch counter).

Dere Julie,

Well, hear I am in camp after being "rough-housed on the rattlers" for
1 day and 2 nites; I was so shook-up that I'm like a loose button on
an overcoat--no wheres in particular.

The most vivid impression in my bean is our interview in the hall-way
of your flat the night (or was it morning) when we bid each other a
fond fare-thee-well. Never will I forget them tender and loving words
you spoke, also will I remember them words spoke, by the guy on the
second floor, NOT so tender; how was we to know you were backed up
against the push button of his bell? When a boob like him lives in a
flat in wartime he ought to be made to muffle his bell after 10 p.m.
I'm gonna rite the Pres. about this.

Our going away was some deeparture; I'll bet a small piece of change
that every fair young damsel on the block was present--and some
damsels not so young and fair. The old maid who grabbed onto me had
seen about 40 summers and heavings knows how many winters; she was so
crosseyed that if she had pulled a weep the tears would have run down
the back of her neck. It was her last chance to grab a man and believe
you me, she made use of the opportunity.

Well angel face, here I am a buck private fur fair, but believe you
me, I'd rather be a private with a chicken on my knee than a kernel
with an eagle on my shoulder; and I'd rather have any shoulder on a
bar than a bar on my shoulder any time.

Yours loving dough-boy,


P.S.--I don't know why they call us dough boys, for thirty per aint
much "dough," is it angel face?

[Illustration: "How wuz I to know you wuz agin the push button of his

Same Camp.

(Not on the map.)

Dere Julie,

Many thanks, my cherrie (that's French), fur the lovely cake you sent
me, but believe you me deary, I didn't get a smell of it. I got the
box about 6 p.m. opened it at 6;01, and at 6;01½ our band played the
Star Spangled Banner and all us fellows had to stand at attention;
by the time they had finished, our company mascot, a billy goat
camouflaged with a bunch of whiskers and an unshaven glue factory
breath gobbled the whole blooming business.

Speaken of eats, the Gov't certainly comes across with the gorging.
That is, there's plenty of it, but the "maynew" is not as long as a
search warrant. But O, my kingdom for a plate of ham and eggs. Ham is
scarcer here than at a Jew wedding feast, and as for eggs, there ain't
no sich thing in the world. I think that some of Bill of Berlin's
ginks in this country have been hanging up birth control "info" in
every hen house in the U.S. least ways sumpin has happened to corner
the market.

Well, deary, far be it from me to say how long this war will last. I
got a scheme to end it, so I'm gonna spill it to you, and here she is;
Lock Theo. Roosevelt and his three sons in the same room with William
the Twicer and his seven sons; whichever cums out at the end of an
hour wins the war. You bet when this cums off I'll hold a ticket on
Theo. Well honey bunch, I had a lovely dream last eve, I dreamed that
you and me was holding down a park bench, with not a cop in sight.
I had just taken you in my arms, and touched your ruby lips, when I
suddently awoke to find the captain's pet sausage hound was licking my
nose. Some day there's gonna be a first class dog funeral in this camp
and that lop-eared canine is gonna ride in the head wagon.

It's so cold down here that if a guy wanted a hair cut all he'd haft
to do would be to wet his hair, leave his hat off, and break off the
icicles, More Anon.

Yours until Lillian Rustle retires,


P.S.--I'd rather be a lamp post on Broadway, than a ten story building
down here.

[Illustration: "The Captin's pet sausage hound wuz lickin' my face."]

In Camp C, W and H.

(Meaning cold, wet and hungry.)

Dere Star of My Heart,

Big day for us; we got our new soldier scenery--a complete set from
kicks to skypieces. Did you ever see a feather bed with a string
tied around the middle, or a bale of hay with the middle hoop busted?
That's what my appollonnaris form looks like now draped in the togs
handed me by the "land of the free and the home of the brave." The
pants must have been cut out with a circular saw for a bow-legged
simp. I have to use a compass to find out which direction I'm going,
and believe you me when I caught sight of "yours truly" in a mirror I
looked like the end of a load of wood and just as handsome.

These clothes remind me of the tailors sign on eur block, "A.
LEVINSKY, FIRST CLASS TAILOR. Wear a suit of our clothes and you will
have a fit." I am liable to have several fits before I get acquainted
with 'em. If I could rent out the extra room, I could buy "makins"
for a month. They call 'em fatigue uniforms, and believe you me they
called 'em right--one look at 'em makes you tired. The only things
that fit are the hat cord and collar ornaments.

You know how it is with me Julie nothing ready made fits me but a

After studying the directions, I managed to make 'em hang on me. I was
so interested in 'em that on my way over to the barracks, I failed
to salute a major who passed; he grabbed me amid ships with one hand
and pointed to his shoulder with the other; my mind bein on clothing
scenery instead of salutin, I piped up, You got no kick comin, look
what they handed me.

Me and Skinny Shaner got on the outside of about a ½ dozen pickled
pigs feet last night at the canteen and finished off with about a
quart of ice-cream apeace. Along about a hour or so afterwards during
the mixing process, I guess the pigs feet got cold in the ice cream
and commenced to kick. Skinny was doubled up so he looked like a horse
shoe bend on a scenic railroad. I suggested that we each take a dose
of Allen's Foot Ease, as I heard that helped sore feet, but Skinny
balked; he always was stubborn like that. Finally, we sent in a three
alarm for a doc.

[Illustration: "You got no kick comin'--look what they handed me."]

He asked us what we'd been eatin; we couldn't give up anything,
otherwise we'd have "give up" the pigs-feet, so the Doc. Allowed we
had the appende-come-and-get-me. That's about as near to the truth as
the Docs usually gets. If you're laying at death's door they generally
pull you thru. The Doc said "operation at once" but havin read Irve
Cobb's book about Operations I passed the buck to Skinny and we
both got better simultaneously to once. I don't jest "make" this
appendicitis but I have a suspicion that's its a disease that costs
about $500.00 more than the stummick ache; anyhow its sumpin you have
just before your Doc buys a new automobile. All the samee, we're off
pigs feet fur life.

Yrs in Health


P.S.--I left my other shirt at the "chinks" to be laundered. Don't let
him sell it for charges before I get back.

Dere Julie,

At last I am a officer; and it happened like this. To make my old
lady feel good, and knowin she didn't know much of the "parley-voo"
spoke in the army, I rote her that I had been made a Captain in the
Latrines; this A.M. i gets a "billy-doo" from her asking me, now that
I had got to be a high up officer, not to be too hard on the boys
under me, and to always remember that I was once a buck private in the
rear ranks. I hope the old lady don't think to look the word up in the
dictionary, or she might, as Laura Blue Jeans Libby says "be rudely
awakened." Eh What?

An instructor today was wising us up on overseas service, and told
us the best way to rough house cooties; he didn't show us any of the
pets, but did show us the scratch proof dug-outs they had made on
his frame. From the way he described 'em and their habits, I imagine
they are the same species of "seam squirrels" that you get in a Coney
Island bathin suit. The first time you go to Mrs. Woolworth's store
please buy and send me a ½ dozen graters so I can rent 'em out to
the boys to scratch on. That's me. In time of piece prepare for war.

I see by the papers that Uncle Sam says the Kings must be thrown out.
Believe you me, he must be some poker player to throw out 3 kings and
make a hand win.

Skinny Shaner got in dutch today at drill. We had been drillin for a
hour or so, and the command was, Company forward march! Halt! This was
kept up continuously fur about a hour, and all to wunce Skinny trowed
down his gun and said he'd be d---- if he would be bossed by a guy
like that, he changed his mind to d---- often. Skinny is always like
that. Ever since he's been here, he's been braggin what a fine singer
he is; said his voice was trained for Grand Opera. He sang for us last
night, a song, entitled "God give us cheap ice, for Heaven's knows we
have cheap skates." Believe you me, his voice was trained for Grand
Rapids instead of Grand Opera.

Yours until the William the Twicer gives that dinner in Paris,


P.S.--I hope Skinny keeps well. He will if he don't try to sing again

[Illustration: his voice wuz trained fer Grand Rapids instead of Grand

Dere Julie,

They took away our maiden names yesterday, and give us numbers,
Skinny's is 31. Yesterday his old man arrived in camp to visit him.
Stepping blithely up to the top sarge he pipes up "I am the father of
thirty-one." "Well said the sarge, you ain't got much on me, I am the
father of eighteen myself."

My number is 475. Today they marched us off to listen to a hour sermon
by a antiquated ol' bunch of spinnage, who at the end bawled out, No.
475. "Art thou weary, Art thou languid?" An now they give me 7 days in
the guard house because I yelled out that I certainly was. How was I
to know that the ol' billy goat was givin out the him to be sang.

Im readin in the papers you sent me from home that Bill Ferguson has
enlisted, which fact leads your "uncle Dudley" to say that the war
certainly is nearin the end, for nobody ever knowed Bill to hold a job
more than 30 days at the longest.

We got our first settin up exercises today. Believe you me, they are
more settin down than they are settin up. All the boobs have to lie
on there backs, put there laigs in the air, and move 'em like he wuz
ridin a bicycle. All to once Skinny Shaner stopped. The drill Sarge
stepped over and deemanded to know why he quit. "Im coastin" pipes
Skinny, "I always do a little coastin when I ride a wheel." Believe
you me if Skinny ever tries to ride all of them wheels in his head at
one and the same time, he have to do a considerable lot of coastin.
With love and mushes,


P.S.--I hope this war lasts till I get over. I'll make that poll
parrot of a clown quince learn to say "UNCLE" in jig time. He won't
have as much chance as a tallow legged dog chase a cat thru H----. Now
that the Yanks have Come in fur fair, Kings, Queens and two spots is
gonna be throwed in the discard.

[Illustration: "Coastin"]

Dere Julie,

The Doc says that me and Skinny will recover, but we'll never look
the same. It wuz like this. Day behind yesterday we wuz out for bombin
practice, each one havin quite some supply of them hell on the Wabash
lookin things in our posesshun. Of course nothing wood do Skinny, but
that he must have a smoke. All to once, as you read in the papers,
their was a tree-mendus explosion and I went up what seamed to me
about a thousand feet. On the way down, I met Skinny going up, he
yelled out to me, "I'll bet you five bucks that I go higher than you
did." Skinny is some sport.

Some of our training officers has seen active service in the front
line trenches. Yesterday was visiting day in camp; after drill, as
pretty a "Jane" as I have seen in this neck of woods asks one of 'em
did he croak a Fritz, while on the other side? "I sure did," sed he
"with this mighty rite hand." Whereupon, this "bunch of peeches" grabs
his hand and kisses it. Skinny 'lowed as how _he_ would have told her
he bit him to deth. That's Skinny, he's strong for the "Janes." Don't
peeve up Julie, a lot of 'em down here fall for me, but I let 'em
lay; exceptin for a few I've saw, you have 'em all lashed to the mast
howlin fur mercy.

Seems to me like we don't do anything down here but walk. It's a
wonder to me that all of us don't walk in our sleep. I was telling
Skinny we should have joined the cavillry, but Skinny said no; He
'lowed as how if he ever had to retreat he didn't want to be bothered
with no horse.

Yours truly and affectionately,


[Illustration: "I'll bet 5 bucks I go higher than you."]

Dere Julie:

Many thanks for the pink silk piejamas, with the red ribbon ties.
Skinny sez they are "a thing of beauty and a joy forever." It don't
take much to make Skinny poetical. When the Sarge got a lamp at 'em he
sed "they would move _anyone_ to poetry, if he didn't "do the Dutch"

I'm afraid the Pres. is not running this trainin biz rite. What's
the use of wisin up this big bunch of guys, when one company of cooks
could wipe out the Fritzies in twenty four hours, if they can get 'em
to eat some of the stuff they wish onto us. We have seventeen kinds of
meat everyday--hash. That's all rite. We can stand fur that, but when
they put raisins in it on Sunday and call it puddin, good nite, its
enough to make a feller bat 1000 in the booze league.

Speakin of shufflin off reminds me that Skinny 'lows as how we ought
to make our wills before we hit the briny trail. The only WILL I'm
worried about Julie, is WILL I cum back? And that's no Bullsheveki,
fur you know derie when one of them tin fish strikes a transport, yer
jest as well let your voice fall. Say Julie, I'm not fur this country
down here a-tall. It has ticks; chiggers and nats all open fur biz
at one and the same time. You never had a tick on you did you Julie?
Well a dog with two sets of flees isn't any busier than said tick.
They ought to draft a lot of 'em into the engineers. They are the best
lil' trench diggers on earth. They always selects a place between your
shoulder blades where you can't reach 'em and dig in. The think-tank
of a tick is not large; but unless they have been shootin hop into
themselves, they can make a guy feel as small as a bar of soap after a
hard days washin. Yours till the kaiser's mustash droops,


P.S. Skinny sez this means "poor simp" but lissen, derie, fer you it
means pretty sweet.

[Illustration: "Them ticks is the best lil' trench diggers in the

Friday the thirteenth.

Dere Julie:

A bugler is jest as popular round this camp in the a.m. as a roman
nose in Russia. If "yours truly" ever gets a large bunch of the mazuma
I'm gonna hire a bugler to blow the revelee every morning at 6 under
my window so I can tell him to go to H----. Skinny sed a Jane he asked
to marry him wunce told him to go to the same place; she didn't jest
zactly tell in them words, but sed to go ask her paw. Now Skinny
knowed her "old" man was dead, he also knowed what kind of a life
he'd lead, so Skinny was wise to what she ment when she piped "Ask
dad." If she'd told me that same I would have thought she was flashin
a spiel for Sweet Caps. Skinny says that's repartee, but I think
its RAP-artee. Speakin of Russia, I see by the papers that a new
revolution has busted out there. That God forsaken country reminds me
of a fly wheel on a automobeel--2000 revolutions per minute.

I had a grate peece of luck this a.m. I had three portions of bacon
for breakfast which same happed on account of my bein seated between
a young Jewish feller on one side, and a Catholic feller on the other.
It bein Friday--nuff sed. Don't ever try to tell me again that Friday
the thirteenth is unlucky.

If I was loose from the army, I could make a million dollars in the
umbrella business; its stopped pouring now, but comin in bucket fulls,
and we are looking fur orders from Washington any day to begin to
build a ark.

Last nite after taps me and Skinny wuz arguin about who wuz to blame
for this war. Confidentially Julie, I think it was Theo. Roosevelt. Do
you remember Julie, about ten years ago when Theo. was on a trip round
the world, he called on Bill the Twicer and Bill got out his army and
peeraded them in Theo.'s honor? and Theo. not wantin to be lackin in
perliteness, slapped Bill on the back and sed, "Bill with an army like
that you can lick the world," Member him sayin that Julie? Well he
did, and Bill the Two-spot, was d---- fool enuff to fall fur Theo's

Yours 'till the Klown Quince sings the Star Spangled Banner.


[Illustration: "An' Bill The Twicer wuz fool enuff to fall fer Theo's

Camp Wadsworth.

Dere Julie:--

Well, ol' girl, you can see by the heading of this that we have gone
south. The plentifullest things down here is "dinges", mules and mud,
and you very seldom see one without the other. You know Julie "Birds
of a fether gathers no moss"; sumpin like that anyhow; you know Julie
I was never much on problems. I see a big lazy dinge yesterday asleep
against a corner of the barracks when the bugle blowed the mess call;
he woke up in time to hear the last notes; stretching himself and
scratching his bed, he said: "Dar she blows, dinner time for white
folks, but just 12 o'clock for niggers."

Well Julie, you can bet your Wrigleys and every hair on your bureau,
that what Sherman said about war is right; its easy to get in an' hard
to get out. Reminds me of the story my ol' man tells about when he
lived on a farm (You know Julie dere, I told you my old man was raised
on a farm in Brooklin, N.Y.U.S.A.). He stuck his bean into a yoke, to
teach a yearling calf to work double, and the way that calf started
to hot foot it to the other end of Long Island was some exhibition of
speed. He could have give the Empire State express a ten mile start
at Peekskill and beat it into Powkeepsy. He yanked my ol' man along
so fast that his feet only struck the ground every other mile. If the
calf had run around in a circle, my ol' man could have spit in his own
face. His coat tail stuck out so straight behind you could have played
a game of peaknuckle on it. Finally the o' man got hep that he wasn't
gonna be able to break the calf before the calf broke my ol' man's
neck so he yelled out, "here we come, dum our fool souls, somebody hed
us off." So Julie, see if somebody bobs up who is able and willin to
stop this little unpleasentness, let him go to it like a sick kitten
to a hot rock.

Member Julie that song we all usto sing comin home on the boat after
a picnic at Staten Island of the Patrick Dooley East Side Outing
and Chowder Club? You know Julie--The chorus ends with Beans! Beans!
Beans! Say kid, that song would fit in this camp like a hungry tramp
at a chicken dinner. Every farmer in the good ol' U.S.A. must have
planted nothing but beans for the last two years. We have 'em boiled
fer breakfast, baked fer dinner, and in the soup for supper. Every
time the Chaplin (not Charlie) says grace, he always "Thanks the Lord
for these tokens of his grace," and Skinny got forty-ate hours in the
booby hatch fer askin me real loud like, so everybody could hear him
to "please put some of them tokens on his plate."

[Illustration: "Dinner fer white folks, but jest 12 o'clock fer

But all the same Julie I'm glad I'm here. Of course I miss you; as the
poet sez "Your brite smile haunts me still." Never will I ferget what
a beautiful picture you made the Sunday before I left when I was rowin
you round the lake in Central Park. You was settin up in the bough of
the boat trailing your lily white hand in the water, and looking up
into my eyes you gurgled in a voiced choking with love, emotion and
beer, you said, "Wouldn't it be heavenly derie, if we could go floting
down life's stream in a boat like this forever and ever"--an' me
paying 25c. an hour for the boat. Of course you didn't think of that,
did you derie.

Yours until Brooklyn wins another penant,


Dere Julie:

On land again, thank God! Comin across we skidded several times and
there were occasions when it looked like there wuzn't anything like
dry land in the whole world, yet we finally landed on terra cotta,
vice versi, or whatever Lattin fraze they use for solid ground.

Believe you me, Julie, I luv a life on the ocean wave like a burlecue
soubrette luvs an alarm clock; that is I like it a lot, but not a
heluva lot. Fer four hours at a strech I leand over the side of the
ship; I wuzn't interested in the ocean or the study of fishes, only I
felt I had sumpin I must give up. Finally, after givin up everything,
even standin for some of Skinny's jokes, I managed to recover
sufficient to enjoy two meals before we got to the dock. Believe you
me, derie, you do not know how near you cum to havin to wear black,
and cashin in on my life insurance. Speaking of life insurance,
reminds me of Skinny's prayer when he turned in one night when it was
stormy. "Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
If the ship should sink before I wake, Uncle Sam has made a $10,000

And speaking of turning in brings up the subject of hammicks; show
me a guy who can ride one all nite without being turned out, and I'll
back him to ride the best tricky mule that P.T. Bamum ever trained.
About the only way to do, when the nite is ruff, and the ship is
rockin, is to sit down and wait until your hammick comes around, and
jump on it and choke it into insensibility. I made out to do this
better than the balance of the bunch, as I had had more practice,
owing to the fact I used to use this method after a nite with the
boys; when I got to my street I used to sit down on the curb, and wate
fur my house to come round; when it came I used to jump on it and hang

Believe you me Julie, that "A life on the ocean wave" may be all rite
as a song but its no noise fur a guy who was born and brung up in
Longacher square.

Will rite you again as soon as I get my land legs.

Yours until they build another statue to Von Hindenburg.


[Illustration: "I felt as if I had somethin I _must_ give up."]

Dere Julie,

Arrived in London O.K. and wet. London is worse than them that talk
about it. When we got unshipped at Liverpool it was rainin cats and
dogs, Skinny was worried over getting his new scenery wet, as he had
lost his rain coat, on the way over, so he spent all morning in the
rain trying to get a new one. Skinny was wetter than I was when I went
home after my nightie the nite you had me stay at your house because
it was stormin outside. He was so wet the water was runnin offen his
rist watch; Skinny wasn't worried about the rist watch as he said it
had been soaked many times before.

Well derie, I am glad I enlisted; I am sertainly gettin some
experience in this little ol' scrap; and will have sumpin to relate
to them slackers when I get home to 'lil ol' New York. Skinny asked
me did I know what a slacker stood for. I told him I didn't know
everything but that most of 'em reminded me of a lemmen marine
pie--yellow all thru, and not enuff crust to go over the top. However
don't be too hard on 'em Julie, no person is perfect as Mose Jackson
said when he was convicted for the 10th time of harvestin other
peoples poultry.

The worst thing I haft to lissen to is Skinny talkin about his first
wife. He says he used to sit and hold her hand fer hours; maybe he
did, and believe you me Julie from other things he said about her, I
believe if he'd ever let loose of her hand she would have killed him.

With love, I am

Yours until the Fritzies sing the Marcel Wave on Unter der Linden,


[Illustration: He wuzn't worried. It had been "soaked" often--]

Dere Julie,

Well ol' dear (you see I've already picked up some London wheezes) a
week has flat-wheeled by since you've heard from 'lil brighteyes. Last
wensday Skinny and me got a pass to do the burg, and our pocket books
have been at half mast ever since. As we are billeted some distance
from Picadilly, we figgered to go downtown in a taxi, rite there our
trubbles begun. We asked the pilot of the tin Lizzie what the tax
would be and he comes back with, "2 and 6 thankee sir." Can you beat
it? Two dollars fer me and six fer Skinny. We hot footed it down and
saved that much.

I didn't care much about ridin with him anyhow. I think he was a Jona;
anyway he was so cross eyed that if he'd aimed a gun at Berlin he
would have shot an eye out of Constantinopel.

We wuz a little nervous account of not being wise to the customs,
but Skinny said if we kept our lids down over our ears nobody would
be wise as to what was going on inside our skulls. The first place
we went into was the Palm Tree Inn. All the barkeepers and waiters
was "Janes." Most of them wuz pretty good looking; one "Jane" in
particular was there with a front. Skinny got one lamp at her and
immediately forgot what he joined the army for.

We wondered why it was called Palm Tree Inn cause there wasn't a palm
in sight, but when we showed the color of our coin, then everybody in
the joint showed us a palm. The people here move slowly, and believe
you me Julie a spider slower than a fifth avenoo handsome cab would
have a cinch spinnin a web around all of 'em. Skinny says most of 'em
has a long line of ancestors; but let me slip you the "info" derie,
that some of 'em must be sinkers on the end of the line. I wish that I
knowed as much as they think they do.

Yours till someone counts all the flivvers,


P.S. Tomorrow night, Skinny wants me to go to the Opera with him.
I'm not goin--cause I always sleep better at home. I'd rather here a
soubrette dolled up in a costume that would barely pass the bord of
sensers sing a song like "Mother don't bother with the rolls, father's
coming with a bun."

[Illustration: Skinny got one lamp at her, and immediately forgot what
he joined the army for]

Dere Julie:

These cockney birds sure chirp some language. Believe you me, a guy
had orto carry an interpreter around with him. Me and Skinny went
out to a swell English camp today to take a peep at English trainin
methods; outside we sees a tipical Tommy Atkins settin down fixin
sumpin wrong with his kicks; as we heaved along side of him, he yells
out to us, "I say, ol' top, have ye any lices?" Skinny, thinkin he
ment did we have seam squirrels commenced to bawl him out in jig time,
telling him there was no such things in the good ol' U.S.A. when he
came back with, "Oh, I say ol' top, I didn't mean the lousy lices,
I meant shoe lices." What they say over here about these cooties
wouldn't look well in print, and makes me think they are harder to get
rid of than a flivver.

If there's one thing in life that Skinny loves its sumpin good to eat.
Honestly, Julie, I believe he thinks of eating when he's asleep. We
goes into a feedin place yesterday in White Chapel to satisfy what
the poets call, an inner longing. I was so hungry my stomak tho't my
throat was cut, Skinny slips the female "biscuit shooter" a tip and
sez, "Now suggest a good dinner for me;" and she whispered in his
listener "Go to some other restaurant." Serves Skinny right about
losing the tip for he's such a tight wad that when the company sings
"Old Hundred" at chapel Skinny sings the "Ninety and Nine" just to
save a cent. Honest Julie, I don't believe he would give two bits
to see the statue of Liberty do the hoo-chama-cooch. Speaking of
the hoochy-koochy reminds me that we saw the Ol' Curiosity shop that
Charlie Dickens wrote about, and desiring to become acquainted with
how much Skinny knowed about books, plays, and etcetery, I asked
him did he ever see Oliver Twist? He says "no but I've seen Fatima
wiggle." He would miss a point if he sat down on a tack, and it would
take a vaccum cleaner to sweep the cob-webs from his noodle; someday
I'm gonna hang a peece of crape on his nose, for I think his brain is

That's why I think he always has a cold in his head, as you know Julie
that disease always strikes in the weakest spot.

Yours until one of the Kaiser's sons is wounded,


P.S. Keep offen indoor sports, fur none of 'em has got sense enuff to
know when to go home.

[Illustration: Skinny wouldn't giv 25 cts. to see the Statue of
Liberty do th' hoo-cha-ma-coochy]

Dere Julie,

We have caught up with the Spanish influenzy--not influence! as there
ain't no sich thing in the world as Spanish influence. The disease is
not confined to Spanish people. It hit Skinny and he speaks Spanish
with an Irish accent, and has never been nearer Madrid than a Spanish
omelet made in Hoboken.

You're nose gets as red as a rear light on an automobile or the beak
of a Park Row panhandler. Your knees knock together like a man who
sees a collector for an installment house. The only things it don't
attack is your corns. They should rename it mucilage flu because it
certainly is a sticker; you have as much pep as an Ingersol watch with
the main spring on a two weeks vacation; but cheer up derie, there
ain't goin to be any job fer any undertaker. No foreman fur a funeral
is gonna say "All those desirin to kiss the corpse, will please pass
up this aisle and go down the other." Not for a while I hope; which
reminds me of that time you and me went to the revival meetin in
Carnarsie. Remember that Julie? You know the time the undertaker put
a century note in the plate, and the ol' sky pilot not knowing who it
wuz prayed that "the business of the giver would increase an hundred

Skinny went into store today to buy a birthday present for his "Jane"
in the U.S. Steppin blithely up to a fresh sales girl he said "I
wanna get something for a gift to a lady." "Your wife sir?" sed she.
Skinny thought it would be safer to pose as a married man, so he said
"Yes'm." "Bargain counter to the right, sir," and she went on wrasslin
with her Wrigleys; she was so busy with it, she wasted no more time
than a blue gum coon passing a grave yard at midnight, with no rabbits
foot in his pocket. The sales ladies in this emporium are always in
high speed, with the throttle wide open when it comes to chatter; at
another counter I asked the young lady to show me the thinnest thing
in underwear. Flashing a 40 below zero look she lisped, "I'm very
sorry sir, but she's just gone out to lunch."

Yours until the Eskimos wear Palm Beach suits,


[Illustration: "Somethin fer my wife" says he. "Bargain counter next
isle" says she]

Dere Julie:

We drilled today for the first time since we landed in this land of
smoke and fog. I'd enjoy these drills, in fact so would all the boys,
if it wasn't fer Skinny. The only one that's in step is him. He knows
as much of the commands as a Bowery Bum knows about publishing a
Chinese newspaper.

Today we saw a German prisoner for the first time. He looked nearly
human. Written on his belt was "Gott mit Uns," an English soldier who
saw it said, "But I say Ol top _We have the Americans with us_." So
you see they're wise to us already.

Believe you me derie, if this war lasts six months longer, Gen.
Pershing and his boys will make German the court language in the lower

Skinny spent last night in the guard house. In trying to get back in
camp after taps he runs plum into a sentry who said "Halt, who goes
there?" and Skinny told him "Oh never mind, I only have been here
a week and you wouldn't know me ennyhow." He told me today that he
didn't wanna be a kernel as there wuzn't much chance fer advancement.
I think I told you Julie in one of my letters how stingy this bird
Skinny is. Last week we got a three day ferlow and beat it up to the
big burg to see the sites. Goin into one of the big hotels, I said to
the clerk "What are your rates?" "Five shillings up to 10," he said.
Skinny called me to one side an' whispered "Ask him how much it will
be up to half-past eight."

Well, derie, we hear we're soon goin on to France, and then
fare-thee-well loafin. We be busier than a paralized man with the
cooties. The only thing that's lible to bother me is the language. I
don't know whether I can speak it or not, I never tried it.

Yours until they have ham at a Jewish wedding,


Dere Julie:

Skinny and me has at last burgled our way into society. You know
derie, that what I know about the highbrow stuff would fill a book,
and what Skinny don't know would fill a library.

Believe you me derie, you needn't get jelous for I would just as
soon get chummy with a flivver as I would with this bunch of "Janes"
who put us on exhibition, for that was exactly what we wuz in their
eyes--freeks on exhibition.

It happened like this: Lady Blue Jeans Shoddy or some name like that
was givin an afternoon funkshun (I'm quotin from the invite so I can'
tell you what it means derie) fer charity and a lot of our company was
invited to come, admission free--tickets fifty cents. Anyhow it was
a lecture by Lord Somebody for the benefit of Lord knows what; the
nearest I could make out it was a spiel on "Do married men make the
best husbands." I'd like to tell you how I enjoyed the talk--but I
don't use that kind of language; anyhow I'll lay a small peece of
change that this bird knew less about what he was trying to talk about
than you could drive into a turkey gobbler with a peggin' awl. I give
in tho, that he was a brave cuss; anybody who stood up and shot "bull"
like he did for two solid hours, must have been brave. Everytime I
looked at him I thought of that ol saw "Faint heart never kissed the
chamber maid." When he finished everyone in the audience was "out"
exceptin an ol maid who was trying to send him a love message by eye

After his batteries went dead on him we was invited to eat. It wuz the
first time I ever eat out in company with Skinny, and believe you me,
Julie, it'll be the last time while I am conscious. I'm not going to
try to tell you of all his breeches of etiket 'twould take too long,
but he pulled one that was a beaut. He kept mixing honey with his
peas; I kep kicking him under the table, and finally I got a chanct to
whisper "What in h---- was he doin that for?" He whispers back "How am
I gonna make 'em stay on my knife if I dont mix 'em with sumpin."

Yours until country bording houses quit using canned vegtabils.


Dere Julie:--

When the Kaiser is canned and I get back to the ol' job, eatin my 3 a
day, and holdin your hand in the movies at nite, I'm gonna try fer the
vaudeville. We have formed a quartet in our company, and we must be
pretty good fer up to the present nobody has fired anything at us but
remarks. Skinny tried to git in by telling us his voice was trained;
the top sarge sed he guessed it was trained all-rite, all-rite,
but he must of trained it selling strawberries. We have a little
Yiddish feller in it too, You know, Julie, the one who slips me his
bacon every mornin; when he ain't soldierin, he runs a little gents
furnishin store on 8th Avenoo; he's some warbler too, but persists in
allus wantin to sing "Keep the home fires Burnin." Well Julie, if he
has ten thou. insurance on that joint of his, as he sez he has, no
wonder he wants to "keep the home fires burnin." He's all business
this little Jewish guy. Skinny sez if he was shiprecked on a deserted
eyeland he would get up the next morning and try to sell a map of the
eyeland to the natives. He's a good business feller too. He rote a
song once, fer a big vaudeville actor, and the actor wrote Izzy to
send it along and if it was good he would send a check. Izzy wired
back to send the check, if it was good, he'd send the song.

Well Julie, I'd like to see your little blonde bean just about now.
Believe you me, Julie, me for the blondes every time. Skinny says that
brunettes is the most popular; well maybe he's right; ennyhow his girl
has been both, so I suppose he knows. I don't know whether you ever
saw this "dame" of Skinny's or not Julie. She lives on the upper east
side of New York and ways about 275 plus in her bathin suit; believe
you me, she ought to marry a traffic cop as he's the only guy I know
of that can handle a crowd. I'll bet 10 cents against Bryan's chance
of being Pres. Skinny can wear one of her stockins for a sweater. If
she ever wore a striped waist she'd look like the awning over a greek
candy store, she never knows when she needs a shine, fer, like Bill
the Twospot, she can't see de feat.

Believe you me, angel face she looks like a model fer a tent.

When Her and Skinny walks along Broadway the newsies yell, "Hully
Gee! Here goes the claronet and the bass drum, where's the rest of the
band?" I'm tellin Skinny I can't see anything attractive about her,
and he says "I know you can't see anything but she's got it in the
bank all-rite, all-rite."

Speaking about this William Jennins Bryan, I'm readin in the papers
about a bull chasin him half way across a field. Imagine Julie, a bull
doin that to Theo. Rusevelt, it wouldn't go ten feet before Theo would
turn round, grab it by the tale and throw it. When it comes to throwin
the bull Theo. has any Spainnard or Mex lashed to the mast howling for

Yours until Eva Tanguay quits singin "I don't care."


P.S. Tell your ol' man not to lose any sleep over the four bits I owe
him on that last peaknuckle game, for if anything happens to me here
you can give it to him out of the l.i. policy.


Dere Julie:

At last we are in the land made famous by Joan of Ark, and notorious
by N. Bonaparty. The little burg we are billeted in is about as big as
a pound of choclates after a Yale-Harvard football game. It's so small
you can stand on the corner of Rue de Main and spit into the country.
It looks like the ornament on a birthday cake or a picture post office

We have been hear about 1 week, and would have written sooner but for
the second time in the life of yours truly, I am recovering from "Mal
dee Mear" (the name is bad enuff, but the disease is worse) Third
Class passengers call it sea-sickness, but if you have a first class
cabin, you are supposed to call it mal dee mear.

They say its only about 30 miles from Dover to Callay; maybe it is on
a calm day, but believe you me derie, we went up the hills of water to
the tune of about a hundred miles. It was all-rite goin up, but Julie
goin down is when everything "comes up." That's if you have anything
left to come up.

[Illustration: "I don't know what to call you," sez he, "Call me an
ambulance," says I.--]

The game we played comin over would have been a good trainin fer a
prize fiter. We tumbled round so we looked like we was shadow boxin.
"Snappy brand of weather" pipes one of these sailor guys. He was rite,
I never remember givin a better imitation of a whip snapper; and the
wind, Julie dere, the wind which spends its time round the Flatiron
and Woolworth Buildings, are as the poets say "gentle zephers" to that
which sweeps across the English channel when a man sized storm is on;
it listens like a cross between the moan of a dyin giastacutus and a
subway express behind time under the East River.

I never before was so glad to set my foot on dri land. I was so
tickled I could have kisst the ground if it had been Hoboken, N.
J.U.S.A. Next time they send me to Vive la France, I hope they send me
by parcels post or airoplane. I bumped into the Captain; he said, "I
dunno what to call you," I told him he could call me an ambulance or
a taxi, anything to get to land with. We have been on water so much
since we swore our way into the army, that I don't know whether I'm in
the army or navy. Tomorrow me and Skinny is gonna get a pass to look
over Paree. We're lookin forward to a big time with what Skinny calls
"Ze gay chansonettes." I don't know whether he means a disease or a
dance, as I don't make this parley-voo much, but I'm gonna find out
before we come back.

With love I am yours until my wrist watch goes 24 hrs without takin a


P.S. How about my other shirt, did you get it from the Chinks?

Nowhere in France the morning after a night in Paris.

Dere Julie:

So this is Paris. Believe you me, Julie, I don't see why they wanna
keep Wilhelm the Twicer away from this burg; give him 48 hrs. in
Paree like the once around the clock we had here and it would be
fare-thee-well Wilhelm. There would be nothin left to say but "don't
he look natural."

Speaking of funerals, Julie reminds me that was the first thing we met
up with when we arrove in Paree! Flowers, paul-bearers, an everything.
Skinny lowed as how it must be some high and mitey who had joined his
4 fathers, and asked a Frenchy standing on the curb of the "bull-yard"
who the big guy wuz? Shrugging his shoulders, he pipes up with sumpin
which sounded like "Monsewer Jennyseepah." Well, we didn't ever here
of the poor boob, so we went over onto the next Rue (make that Julie.
I'm getting along fine), and we runs slap bang! into a other funeral
more elegant than the first; and Skinny not wantin to let anything get
by him, again asked the name of the guy ridin in the head waggin and
he got the same answer "Monsewer Jennyseepah." "Yer a liar," yelled
Skinny, "we just saw _his_ funeral on the other street." Well, Julie,
I don't blame Skinny, I was a little sore myself on the way this guy
tried to string us.

[Illustration: Me an' Skinny seen the toom of Napoleon the Wunst.]

We got along seem the sights without much trouble; the toom of
Napoleon the Wunst, the bridge over the Sane, the 4th of July colum
and Champ de Lizzie; feelin hungry we drifted into a swell lookin
feedin place with good lookin she waiters. Now don't be nervous Julie,
there ain't nothin gonna happen with me and them Jane's; for believe
you me star of my heart, I don't _care_ what anybody says to me, but
you can bet every dollar that Hetty Green ever gave to charity, that
when I do marry, I'm gonna get a dame who bawls me out in language
that I understand. Well, luckily we struck a she waiter who spoke
a little American; to put it as she said "I speek a leetle of what
Monsewer calls ze Anglaise." The first thing we ordered was soop. The
Jane brought it in a bowl and had her thum jabbed into it, when Skinny
pointed to her thum in the soop, she grinned and sed "Zats all rite,
Monsewer, it is not hot." We got along very well (considerin that
Skinny kept her mind offen her business by trying to send her a eye
wireless) and got down to the desert. You know me Julie, Me for the
good old fashioned pies like my ol' lady makes. Gettin a lamp at what
looked like a juicy huckleberry pie, I pointed to it and said in my
company tone of voice "Please give me a big dose of that huckleberry
pie." Puttin on her prettiest smile and rollin her eyes, and arching
her shoulders she cum back with "if Monsewer will pleese brush off ze
flies, he will find it is custard pie--NOT ze huckleberry."

Its a good thing we are leaving to-morrow to go toward the front for
if we staid round her long the moral of our regiment would stand at
about zero minus 5.

Yours until they chase the Kaiser to Holland with the balance of the


On the Hike Nowhere in France.

Dere Julie:

There shure is a bunch of widows over here, Both grass and sod. I say
little brighteyes, do you think it possible fer a guy to get hay fever
from a grass widow? Ennyhow Skinny got some kind uv fever when he was
chummin round with these female comfort kits, and if they don't lose
his trail, I can see visions of a certain (what the dickens is that
French word for fat--oh yes, embumpoint), lady in Hoboken, N.J.U.S.A.,
lookin fer a new affinity. In other words, unless the signs is
misleading, Skinny is gonna lose his liberty by gettin married, and
its the opinion of your "'Lil Brighteyes" that the speech of P. Henry
of Va. on "Give me Liberty or give me deth" was made, more because he
was married than because he was patriotic; and all the married men,
I'm told Julie, are chirpin the same wheeze. Of course with you derie,
its different. I don't believe you would accuse a feller of keepin
another woman when his pay envelope is a nickle shy on Sat. night.

Skinny and me had a date with the Pudding Sisters at the canteen last
nite, and believe you me, they was some babies, and was well worth the
money we spent on 'em.

Some people we met today from Belgium say that when the Fritzies get
soused, they hug and kiss every woman they meet. What a fat chance for
that sweet maiden of fifty years who grabbed me off at the station,
the day I left for camp. You can bet your Wrigleys that after a
regiment passed her she would make a detour and catch up with the head
of it again.

Yours until Eyetalian restaurants serve real wine.


P.S. After readin this letter over I tho't I'd better wise you up on
that date me and Skinny had with the pudding sisters at the canteen
last nite. Women are so suspicious you know. I ment we went down to
the canteen to get some puddin, rice and tapioca.


[Illustration: She would run and ketch up with the hed of the

Dere Julie:

Your last lovin letter was rec'd by your little bright eyes in a
quaint old burg in viva la France, just back of where the Yanks are
making soup strainers of William the Twicer's boobs by punchin them
in the kitchen with that "wooden sword of America." You know Julie,
that story that the Emp has been jabbing them in the arm with about
"America couldn't fite if she would, and wouldn't if she could,"
and tellin em also about Germany's "submarines sinking all the Yanks
transports etcery etcery." If Bill keeps this up very long they will
nickname him Barnum.

Speaking of William the Twospot, reminds me of what one of our boys,
which was taken prisoner and escaped, wuz telling about what the Emp
said when he saw so many of our boys on the front at Chato Theiry;
sendin fer some of his generals he deemanded they tell him what boat
brung all them Yanks over. One of 'em piped up and sed "I think, yer
Majesty it was the Lusitania." Being German, it went over his bed like
a air ship.

The way things are goin now, it looks as if William the Twicer is
gonna have a great future behind him: Skinny sez the Klown Quince and
his army reminds him very much of his (Skinny's) brother who went out
west and made twenty Indians run--but the Indians couldn't ketch him.
Believe you me derie, the Boches are running faster than the color
in a 19 ct. pair of stockins. They are hot footin it faster than the
train that I left for camp on pulled out of Grand Central Station; and
that pulled out so fast that when I tried to kiss you from the window
when she started, I kissed a cow ten miles away.

Well Julie dere, I miss you much believe you me. I'd rather see you
just about now than a messenger with the news that piece has been
sined; of course there's a lot of nice girls hear amung the Red X
Nurses and Y workers, but there's so many officers and gold braids
round that fellers like us dont get any more show than a dollar at a
church fair.

[Illustration: Speakin' of William the Two-spot]

We're up now to where we can hear the noise of the big 75's as they
pound the Boches from their trenches and have gotten so used to it
that we can't sleep without it. Every once in a while we see the
ambulances comin in, and a lot of the boys have to be watched to
keep em from trying to beat it back into the trenches again. We heard
yesterday Julie, about a detachment who went over the top and the
commanding officer told em not to go beyond a certain objective during
the first half hour; when the half hour was up they wuz a half mile
beyond the objective. When the major of the battalion bawled out the
company commander, he yelled back at him "H---- if the Crown Prince's
men couldn't stop 'em what chance had I to stop 'em?" That's whats
winning this hi' ol' scrap Julie--we hit em first and apologise

Some of our boys was sayin to-day that they thought the war would soon
be over, and when I ast Skinny about it, he allowed as how that meant
fer single guys only; that the war would go on fer married men just
the same. Corporal Louie Heinlein sez that song "Here cums the
bride is the greatest battle song of all" and Louie has had a lot of
experience with "Janes." But with you and me Julie dere, that will be
sumpin else again.

Yours till people keep their New Year's resolutions until Valentines


Dere Julie,

At last I have smelt the smoke of battel, and fer the third time since
I joined the colors you don't know how near you've been to cashing
that 10 thou. insurance policy. You would have cashed it fer sure this
time, if it hadn't been fer a despised cooty; never again will yours
truly be hard on 'em.

I have one that I'm gonna retire on a penshun. It wuz like this.
Our regiment wuz called upon to go into the front line trenches and
while I was peepin over the top, one of them pesky "seam squirrels"
commenced bitin the back of my neck. I bent my head for'd to reach
over on the back of my neck to pick him off, at one and the same time
a sniper cut loose at me from a big tree just outside the line of
Fritzies trenches; had my head been where it was before I started to
get the cooty, it would have been fare-thee-well Barney, so I just
put Mr. Lifesaver back, and, as before stated, I'm gonna put him on a

Believe you me derie, the way our boys made that sniper climb down out
of that tree would make Tarzan of the apes have a hemorage, and turn
green with envy; he shinned down that landscape decorashun like as if
it was greased.

Well derie, when we first swore our way into the army, I thought
Skinny was a coward; I figgered if he ever got in a regular scrap
with Bill the Twicers hired patriots his knees would knock together
like a pair of castnets played by a Spanish bull fiter; but I take it
all back, Skinny in battel is a whole team and a cross dog under the
waggin. It came about like this. We was bein bumbarded by the Fritzies
in the most approved style and believe you me derie, the shells and
shrapnels was flyin round and over our heads thicker than hungry bums
around a free lunch counter; all to once Skinny commenced to get a bad
case of the hecups. I didn't say anything to him as I was busy with a
little party of my own when all to once he yells to me, "Say Barney,
fer Heavens sake do somethin to scare me so I can get rid of these
d---- hecups." So you see Julie dere, you never can tell by the looks
of a frog how fer it can jump.

This lil' old scrap has brung out a lot of cases like Skinny's;
fellers in civil life that you think wouldn't have the sand to get
manicured, or ther hair cut without takin cloroform, are puttin
themselves on the map faster than towns on newly opened Government
land. Even the married men in our regiment are gettin so "Spiffy" that
I believe they'll have sand enough to talk back to friend wif when
they get back home.

Yours until they make bottles without false bottoms.


[Illustration: He cum down that tree quicker than Tarzan uv the Apes]

Dere Julie,

Well Julie, a courier has just horned his way into camp with the
"info" that this lil ol' scrap is over, and I've lost an other chance
to be a hero; but I'm not gonna go round making a noise like a dill
pickel, just because I didn't get no show to give the Fritzies a upper
cut. I'd rather be a live simp Julie, than a dead hero, any day.

Its better for me ennyhow, to say "there he goes, than here he lies."
Believe you me derie, I've saw enuff of the damage these Boch pills
can do, to know that a boob who tries to stop one of 'em with his
frame, has no more chance than a 10 cent piece of ice when the
thermometer is 99 plus in the shade, or a scuttle of suds in a Bowery
gin mill.

Well Ol' dear, she's over, and I didn't get a chance to croak a single
Fritzie. My ol' man had better luck in the civil war. He was out one
hot nite with a foraging party and they run into a confed ambuscade,
a big fat Johnny Reb took after my old man and the chase was nip and
tuck fer about 2 miles. Just when the ol' gent had give himself as
lost, he saw over his shoulder the confed fall down in a heap and die
from being overheated. But at last Julie dere, we have made the world
safe fer the Democrats, so you can kill the cow's young son fer little
bright eyes as they did fer that young high roller mentioned in the
Bible. If veal is top high in the good ol' U.S.A., I'll be satisfied
with a table-dee-hoty dinner at the Cafe Des Enfants (meaning Child's
Restaurant), I'm not particular Julie, so long as every course is
served with your smilin face opposite. The more I see of the "Janes"
over here the better I like the Julies over there. I've saw 'em all
and not a one can hold a tallow candle up a dark alley to my own
Julie. In the language of the poet

  You can talk of English women
    Who like there beef and beer;
  Of Italy's black haired beauties
    Who love there land so dere;
  Of Spanish turtle doves
    Who sing of wealth and love;
  But give me the U.S. Girl
    She wins my esteem
  Fer everytime you kiss her
    You get the flavor of--Boston Pork & Beans!

[Illustration: Home again, across the ol' Atlantic.]

Skinny has just arrove back in camp from the trenches and got the news
about the sining of the armistice. He was caked with mud from hed to
foot, which he said he didn't mind till our captin complimented him on
holdin all the ground they took yesterday. I guess Skinny thot he was
bein kidded. I made him pull off his clothes in jig time fer if he'd
ever get caught out in the rain like that he would have suffered a

Well derie, I don't suppose an other letter will reach you before
"Yours truly" so I can't say if I will rite again or not; enny-ways on
our way back across the ol' Atlantic we wont have to look out fer any
of William the Twicers tin fish, and when I get back to the land of
the free and the home of the brave, I'm gonna be afraid to get on a
ferry boat fer fear she might head across the ocean. And now Julie,
fare-thee-well until I hold you in my arms again,

Yours until married men have alibyes there wives believe


P.S. I've just learned our regiment is to leave for home at once, so
plug the push button on that guys bell in the hallway.

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can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.