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Joseph Milton Mock First World War correspondence

 Collection — Box: WWI 4, Folder: 8
Identifier: 2017-429-w-r

Content Description

- This collection contains original correspondence from Private Joseph Milton Mock to his older sister, Bertha Phelps, as well as two photocopied newspaper correspondence of the same letter to his father, John Mock, during the First World War. The collection also contains a note from the donor concerning the original correspondence, a transcribed narrative told to the donor by Mock, a photocopied certificate of graduation, a photocopied enlistment record, a photocopied honorable discharge record, a photocopied death certificate, and a photocopied obituary. The original correspondence is dated March 29, 1919. The donor note concerning this letter states that the letter was written by Mock in Kruft Germany to his older sister, Bertha Phelps in Frontier, Nebraska. The letter was later given to the donor. In the letter, Mock exclaims that he has not received a letter from his sister in three years, but it seems like he is over exaggerating. He also remarks that he would not be coming home until 1995. He states that their new mess hall is currently being built but in the meantime there are holes in the roof which makes the rain and snow even more unpleasant. He discusses his re-enlistment in the army, saying, “If need to stay any longer might just re-enlist stay in the army the rest of my life and take care of the whole U.S. someone must do it you know and I can’t make a living on the outside the best thing to do is remain a soldier. Well I have changed my mind all ready I am coming home just as soon as possible.” In the photocopied newspaper clipping correspondence, Mock is writing to his father and discusses what he has been up to and where he has been. He also discusses his position as a messenger, saying, “It is not so dangerous any more you know, but when I first started it about two months ago, they told me the average runner’s life was from 15 minutes to 24 hours. However, none of our bunch were killed, altho’ we were all close to bursting shells.” His time as a messenger is elaborated in the transcribed narrative dated November 11, 1982. Mock tells the donor that he was the messenger that told the batteries about the cease fire at 11am November 11, 1918. He was sent to give the message an hour before the ceasefire and was forced to walk due to the exceeding amount of horses killed. Mock states, “It made me disgusted that the Generals knew of the cease fire a couple days before but wouldn’t stop the firing because the big wigs wanted the publicity of the 11th day, month, and hour.” More information on Mock is given in his obituary and his death certificate.


  • 1918-11-24
  • 1919 March 29
  • 1982 November 11

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

There are no restrictions on the use of this material except where previously copyrighted material is concerned. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all permissions. For further copyright information, please contact the archivist.

Biographical / Historical

More background information on Joseph Milton Mock is in the death certificate and obituary in the collection.


0.08 Linear feet (1 folder)

Language of Materials



This collection contains an original letter, photocopied correspondence, photocopied obituary, and photocopied official military and government documents from PVT. Joseph Milton Mock, AEF, during the First World War.


This collection is arranged by material type, author, and date.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Donna F. Jackson.

Legal Status

Donor retains any copyright and related rights. For more information, consult original donation form.
Finding Aid for the Joseph Milton Mock First World War correspondence collection
Wynter Salazar
April 4, 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Center for American War Letters Archives Repository

Leatherby Libraries
Chapman University
Orange CA 92866 United States