Life History of

William Henry GARDNER

Document 1 - Letters to the State Gazette and Dyer County Herald, Tennessee, 1902-03

Dyer County Boy in the Philippines

Editor Tom W. Neal, Dyersburg, Tennessee

August 19, 1902

Dear Sir:

I enclose money order for $1 for which please send the State Gazette to me at Manila, P. I.  Kindly remember me to Mr. Sidway, if he is still with you.

The State Gazette is the first newspaper I learned to read as a boy.  I learned the cases and set my first type in the office of the ever-popular State Gazette.  Now that I have settled here, where I feel that the remainder of my life will be spent, I remember Neal's State Gazette and must have it.

Very Respectfully,
William H. Gardner
Sergeant, Manila Police
Manila, P. I.

Philippine Letter

Editors, Herald, Dyersburg, Tenn.

February 27, 1903

Dear Sirs:

Find enclosed postoffice money order for one year's subscription to the Dyer County Herald. I had no idea that my subscription had expired until to-day when I received the Herald escorted by two great big 2-cent stamps.  Then I began to figure and remembered that the last mail brought me no paper, so I looked the matter up and found that my subscription had expired several weeks ago.

I have no idea who the friend is who sent me the last copy, but assure you it was appreciated. No one can realize how we Americans over in this country appreciate the home papers.  I donít know why it is, but very few people here receive letters from home regularly, and even if we did, the paper contains many many things of interest to us that our homefolks would never think of writing.

I suppose the reason our letters from home are so few is because we are so careless about writing.  But the trouble with us is that we have only one thing to write about that we think the homefolks know anything about and that is our insignificant selves, and with most of us the whole story is told at one writing.  We cannot use the Philippines for a subject, for the longer we stay here the less we seem to know about the country and its people.  I used to think some of them were pretty good people, but now I have concluded that I do not know a single one that I would trust as far as I can throw a Carabo [sic] by the tail.

I was a member of the HERALD force in 1896-7, and if any of my old associates are still at the old stand kindly remember me to them.  I hoped to see "God's country" this year, but have recently changed my mind.  There is a great deal of scrapping going on around here now.  They are firing close enough to be heard in the city of Manila.  I am in charge of a company of native police on the outskirts of Manila and am expecting something to break loose poco tiempo.  I sent out two scouting parties Saturday.  A Sergeant and seven men returned Sunday night with no "scalps".  The other party, which is accompanied by two American policemen, has not been heard from.  The police, patrols and outposts are armed with Winchester repeating shot guns.  I believe I will remain here to see further developments.

With best wishes, I remain,

Yours truly,
W. H. Gardner
Sergeant: Manila Police, Precinct No. 4

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