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    Life at the headquarters of the Commander-in-Chief

    Dwight D. Eisenhower Typed Letter Signed to Mamie Signed Twice, "Ike", at the conclusion of the letter, and "D" after the holographic postscript. Three pages, quarto, 8" x 10.25", [Algiers], Dec. 9, 1942, on imprinted stationery of the Allied Forces Headquarters; with the salutation , closing lines and postscript in Eisenhower's hand. A lengthy letter describing his daily life, in part:

    "Lee has just told me that an officer is leaving here today or tomorrow to return to the States. I am just too weary to pick up a pen to write a full letter so I hope you will forgive me if I dictate part of it. I have handed Lee a check which he is sending to you... We are still living on a rather 'camping out' basis, although we have a house that we will eventually put on quite a nice basis. It is a sprawly affair and gloomy, but it has one nice living room and my bedroom is quite comfortable. Lighting, heating, and all other facilities are typically French and you know what that means... For the moment, we have an army cook who does as well as he can out of the type of rations we get. I haven't had any fresh fowl or beef since coming to this country. All of us live mostly on mutton and canned 'willie' so far as the meat ration is concerned. Fruits, such as tangerines, oranges, dates and figs, seem to be plentiful at this season... Butch and Lee are both in fine fettle... it is pretty hard to run a household here... and at the end of a long day I get rather impatient with little things that go wrong...This has been a wearing tour of duty. As long as the first of August I knew that I was not to be in England long - at least that I was to take a good healthy trip away from the place. Since the whole thing was highly secret, it was of course difficult for me to write to you often and avoid telling you things that I couldn't put in a letter... Through friends in the War Department, you would be the first to know if I should take seriously ill or have any accident befall me, so I trust that you don't worry about my general welfare... Yesterday a copy of a telegram was shown me which indicates that Milton is soon to come to this theater. What a joy it will be to see him, and you may as well tell Helen that he is going to have a good long stay. She might as well understand that I am the boss here and no one leaves the place until I give the word!..." Much more excellent content.

    In his hand, Eisenhower closes, "Well - not so much more to say except that I'd like to see you this very minute. Send my best to all the family members - and remember, I love you - always Ike." In a postscript, he adds, "The written part of this letter is not nearly what it might be - but as usual I'm a slave to 'time' - loads of love - D."

    On November 13, General Eisenhower flew briefly to Algiers to sign a formal accord with Admiral Jean Fran├žois Darlan, commander-in-chief of the Vichy French Armed Forces. It was agreed that the French would not resist an American-British offensive in North Africa in exchange for making Darlan governor general of French North Africa. Upon returning to Gibraltar, Eisenhower resolved to move to Algiers by Nov. 23. Eisenhower soon realized the troubles that would arise out of the Darlan Deal. In his book Letters to Mamie, John Eisenhower notes of these events: "Actually the Deal was recognized as necessary because of the urgency of an advance toward Tunisia, which had not yet been occupied by the Nazis and Italians. The cooperation of the French allowed [the British] to begin the push to Tunisia. From mid-November to late December, despite the fact that the Tunisian fighting was foremost in his mind, General Eisenhower was able to visit the front only twice, as weather forced him to travel this long distance by automobile over muddy roads.

    "General Eisenhower's one relief during this period was the visit of his brother Milton, who had been sent by President Roosevelt to inquire, among other things, about the continuing bad publicity still coming out of North Africa regarding the Darlan Deal. Milton was able to discover some difficulties and correct them, but he could only stay a short time. The Darlan problem was not completely solved until his assassination on Christmas Eve."

    Very fine condition.


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