Letter, Earl Southworth "Southy" Williford to his sister, January 1, 1919

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Correspondence from Earl Southworth "Southy" Williford to his sister. Williford was a native of Carroll County, Mississippi, and a 1917 graduate of Mississippi A&M. In this letter, he describes the incredible loss of life he witnessed serving in World War I. He states "I will never forget the incident and now I am nervous as can be."



Post-traumatic stress disorder
World War, 1914-1918








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Jan 1/19

Dear Sister & Lige

----I guess you people had a wonderful celberation when the Armistice was signed. Well I could not believe it. I was fighting right up until 11 o'clock and when the Major ordered me to cease firing I thought he was crazy from shell fire. We were driving the bloody devils right in to Germany and all at once everything ceased, and the World was at peace again, and there lay our dead and dying for miles back of us and all around us. It was really impossible for us to stop. You see we had been pushing him for 32 days and didn't want to stop until he crossed the Rhine. We lost so many good boys, and lots of my class mates are buried in our old sector. The thing that got me worst of all was the blowing of 5 men all over me, a direct hit with one of those big shells knocked me down and burnt my cheek but some way I managed to move ahead. I know I will never forget the incident and now I am nervous as can be, but everyone of us is torn up more or less.

Tell Lige we will murder the peas and water melons this summer and also take another trip to Greenwood.

Would give anything to see those kids, it seems now that it has been years since I have seen any of you, but I guess we will get home sometime during the summer.

Will stop for this time. Heaps of love to the family.

Tell the Boys I will tell them all about the war when I get back.

Your loving Bro
Earl S. Williford
Lt. of Inf.
A. E. F.




Williford, Earl Southward, 1895-1932, “Letter, Earl Southworth "Southy" Williford to his sister, January 1, 1919,” Mississippi State University Libraries, accessed May 29, 2024, https://msstate-exhibits.libraryhost.com/items/show/95.

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