January 31, 1945
Dear Mother, Dad, and Grandpa,
Well, one month of the new year end today. We get paid the 6th, so I will be drawing my overseas pay for the first time, which, incidentally will make me a wealthy man, since I’ll be getting $10, or perhaps I should say 1000 lire, more. We are still prohibited from writing about places we have visited, but we have seen quite a bit in a short period of time. One afternoon this week we had 4-hour passes and went into a town. It is very interesting indeed and quite prosperous compared to other places I have seen in Italy.
Today I sent you some objects and art which I picked up – all Italian alabaster. One is a novel set of ash trays and a cigarette box which form one complete set when put together. Also a bird-bath (miniature, of course!) and a powder box. I do hope they arrive safely. I was looking for some Capi di Monte figurines, but couldn’t find any. They have some gorgeous things in the shops there.
(continued in next letter)
 These miniature letters are the famous “V-Mail” of World War II. Intended to save shipping space so that it could be used for war material rather than mail, they were converted to film for shipment back to the states and then reproduced at 60% size for delivery to their final destination. In this way the equivalent of 2,575 pounds of normal letter mail was reduced to 45 pounds of film. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V-mail
I also bought some post-cards which I will send when I am permitted to do so. Also I want to send some Italian and Allied Military Currency for souvenirs.
Dad, I received the “Life” magazine of Jan. 8, and was indeed glad to get it. Can magazines and papers be sent without requests? I thought perhaps not, and thought you got around that by sending it in 2 parts.
Well, last night I heard that the Russians are 70 miles from Berlin. They are really flying! I hope the good news will continue. It seems that the rumors from neutral countries are prevalent once again. It’s difficult to sift the true facts out of the propaganda. Dr. Goebbels is really working overtime.
I don’t believe that I can talk about the weather, but you can read plenty about it in the newspapers, and believe me it’s all very true. “Miserable” is one way of describing it.
I guess that’s all for now. I want to write to you more tomorrow if possible. Love to all of you.
Lovingly, Jerome, Jr. P.S. Send some food. Hope that doesn’t sound too commanding.