Recently on eBay I found 4 postcards sent from a lieutenant to what I am guessing is his girlfriend in Andalusia, Alabama.
French postcard with the word “theater” written on the front. The message on the back (hand dated March 8, 1945 and mailed March 11) reads: “Dearest Ainsworth, Gee I am having a swell time- wish you could be here with me. This place is about the same as Hot Springs, Ark.- natural hot water. Believe it or not but I received my first bath Sun. since the early part of Jan. I am living in a nice hotel with plenty of good ole American food- beef steak at least once a day. Thanks for your letters- just keep up the good work. Love, Ray.”
The above card shows two children (possibly Austrian?) It has a handwritten date of May 2, 1945 and was postmarked on May 7, 1945- one day before V-Day in Europe. “Dearest Ainsworth, Wish you could be here. We would have a big snow fight- everything is covered with snow. Hope we’ll be on our way home soon. Be sweet + write often. Love, Ray.”
The above card was mailed just a few days after V-Day, and the note on the front reads “Street dancers from 7 P.M. until 6 A.M.- what a life!” Ray’s message reads: “Dearest Angel, Having a big time- left Austria on the 8th to spend ten days here at a rest camp. Did I tell you I was in Italy? That makes seven countries I have been into. Hope to return home before many months- be sweet and write often- Love, Ray.”
“Dearest Ainsworth, I did not get to go horse riding yesterday due to the rain but I hope to make the trip this afternoon. We have another dance tonight- be sweet + write often- my address may start changing soon. Love “Bo.”” Mailed July 5, 1945.
I had trouble finding information on Ray on Google. There was an obituary online for a Bozeman in Alabama who died in 2005 and was preceded in death by his dad Raymond Bozeman, but the mom’s name was Ethel. Perhaps this Raymond came home to Alabama and found someone named Ethel? My searches for Ainsworth Mathews also proved fruitless 😦