Minneapolis, 1945. Fine.
Minneapolis: 26 August 1945. Three pages, written over two leaves of 1452nd A.A.F. Base Unit Service Center letterhead; with the original envelope postmarked August 27th , addressed in Hammett's hand. A fine manuscript letter with the usual creasing, else free of any wear or damage. Written in the weeks leading up to the end of World War II, this letter is addressed to Hammett's friend Lee Browne, and describes some of the most recent developments among his group of fellow soldiers. A veteran of World War I, Hammett re-enlisted in the Army after the attack on Pearl Harbor, serving for three years despite his ailing physical health. Hammett would later be imprisoned for his political activity as a leftist working to combat the wrongful imprisonment of alleged communists. Most famous for the development of the hard-boiled crime novel, Hammett himself worked as a detective at the start of his writing career. "Dear Lee- Peace made me an old man - with the usual help of the calendar - and I'm now on my merry if not always swift way to Fort Dix and discharge. I've been hung up here - Edmonton - for four days but am told I've entrain for Minneapolis tomorrow. Mostly I leave the fidgeting and fretting over delays to the young, but once in a while I find myself wishing to God they'd get it over with. When I find that happening I either go get something to eat or take a nap or do both and should arrive home fat and sleek as a suckling pig. Home, by the way is: Hardscrabble Road, Pleasantville, N. Y., (Phone 201) I had a letter from Bill last week and he sounded content enough on his rock, though I imagine he's restless as everybody else since the Japs quit. Al Weisman left for Adak the day before I took off. Yank is shutting up its Alaskan bureau, so he has a pretty good chance of being transferred to New York before long. Lew Valentine should be showing up in the city too - unless he's managed to get out of the Army. Hurford was supposed to be making some kind of deal for him. Gene O'Donnell at last reports was assigned to SS at Fort Dix. Maybe I'll get a chance to look him up. That about cleans me up on who's who, at least until I see you. (It's funny as hell writing people about seeing them with anything approaching immediate expectancy!). Love, Sam"