A few months back, we wrote about finding the perfect home for a recent donation of photographs. That donation also came with four bundles of letters from World War II. The letters were all addressed to Clyde O. "Mac" McKinney of Longview, IL. I just started processing the collection, and here are some tidbits I learned after spending an hour unfolding fragile letters.
Where we started (left). Where we are now (right)
The letters are from 1945, from family, friends, local ministers, etc., to 'C.O.,' 'Skip,' 'Pal,' and Clyde. He had a lot of monikers. My favorites are the letters from his mother, Stella Wright McKinney. She includes "My-Son" on each envelope and addresses him in each letter as "My Dearest Sweet Jolly Boy."
The letters from home and friends are newsy accounts about life on the home front during the war's final year. The joys of V-J Day are expressed as friends and family revel at the end of the war and the possibility of their loved ones coming home soon.
This letter to C.O. McKinney is from Don McKinney, brother and fellow serviceman.
There are still three bundles of letters to unfold, and I look forward to reading more about Clyde McKinney and his family.
- Sherrie Bowser