Sorry, folks. I seem to have done it again. I got a few letters out of order. There were two more letters between January 10 and 27.
Envelope post dated January 17, 1941
Mr. & Mrs. K.W. Rhoades & family
4011 North 30 Street
Long Beach, California
Thursday [January 16]
Well here is your wandering child again, how is every body? We are back in Long Beach now, anchored last night about 9 p.m. It was pretty rough out this week, but lots of time to go up on deck and feel the spray hitting you in the face. We did some more firing and made some test runs. Smashed up an airplane, but no one was hurt. [see archived footage at end of post for images of launch and recovery of Kingfisher seaplanes]
Well here is some good news, I have the money problem all figured out. I made out an allotment to Dad for $15 a month beginning February for six months. You will get a government check, Dad, about the 20thof the month. I figure that will be about $90 in six months and I have about 30 in the bank (I guess) which will make $120. After six months I will increase my allotment to $25 as I should be making $54 by then. Dad you know that bank account is open to you and any time you need any extra money help yourself. You see I had to make the allotment as helping support dependents as the Navy is not permitting allotments to banks (because to many fellows were paying interest on loans) unless you had a savings account number. January 14 was the last day allotments could be made this half year. I make $36, insurance runs me $3, allotment $15, Hospital and miscellaneous $1, that leaves me $17 split into two paydays is $8.50 which is about all I need. On that amount I can get my necessities and make a liberty each payday. Too much liberty isn’t good for anyone and neither is to much money. We got paid this afternoon. I drew $8. Just bought me a new yellow [bole, bode or lode?] pipe, that gives me two of them now.
Well, Saturday is Hellenes birthday, as I can’t go ashore and wouldn’t know what to get, I am sending two dollars. Buy her a little coat or an outfit of some kind; you know more about what she needs than I do. I bet she is getting pretty big four years old now. “Happy Birthday, Babe”.
We are leaving for the islands Monday morning at 6 a.m. keep sending my mail to Long Beach, until I find out what our exact location will be, it will be forwarded to me, and please let me hear from all of you including you, Dad. You can find time at least once a week to write. I haven’t had a letter from you in at least a month now. All the mail they brought on this morning and I didn’t even get one from home. It didn’t make me feel very good. B sent me one of her announcements, they sure are nice.
Time out…it’s time for chow now, will write more after chow. Well here I am again 10 minutes has elapsed. I cleaned up sat down at the table; the chow didn’t look so hot (guess we got fed too good at noon) so I got up again.
Well how is the weather back there? Warming up, I hope. Nobody has colds or the flu, have they? I sure wish you could all come out here. Boy it is just like summer. Just think about this time next week, I will be running around in shorts sweating to death and cussing the whole Navy that is what everyone does. Nobody likes it, its just like a boy scout outfit, [???] but when it comes time to get out you reenlist and I don’t believe they are very many who would take their discharge if it were offered to them. Well, I can’t think of any more so I will close for now.
Loads of love to all
Happy birthday, Babe
Previous portion neatly written, in the same envelope was included the next portion. Appears to be drafts of a response, probably the telegram he mentions in the next letter.
Box 14 Kenny Rhoades U.S.S. Colorado, Long Beach Cal
Thursday letter rec’d
Hope you have mom’s + dad’s letters now
Thanks for birthday fromHelene has moneybirthday in her purse. Proud and thanks you your letters goes round table to many your friends all interested goodall wish you well. Anchors aweigh, good luck God speed safe anchorage quick return all proud of you.
Ja.5300. Kenneth W. Rhoades [senior]
Thursday’s letter rec’d. Hope you have Moms and Dads letters now. Helene has birthday in her purse – proud and thanks you. Your letters go round table to many your friends. All interest, all wish you well, anchors aweigh, good luck, God speed, safe anchorage, quick return – all proud of you.
Dick + Helene
|USS Missouri, circa August 1944 showing bunk life on a ship similar to what Kenney
may have experienced on the USS Colorado. Image from Wikipedia.
Envelope post dated January 19, 1941
Mr. & Mrs. K.W. Rhoades & family
4011 North 30 Street
Pearl Harbor Honolulu
Sunday [January 19] 12 A.M.
I got your telegram about 10 A.M. and was sure tickled. It gave me a slight scare at first. Yes, I got your letters about an hour after I mailed mine to you. Thanks for the good wishes. Glad Helene was happy.
I just got a letter from B and she said she didn’t get the corsage, boy am I going to write that Florist a mean letter, it’s a chinch[?] I haven’t got any $5 to be giving away.
Well it sure is swell out today. We get underway about 2:30 tomorrow afternoon. Bill came over last night about 3:30 and we sat around and talked till 10 P.M. It will be about 16 days before you get another letter from me so don’t worry or feel that I have forgotten you. Well I’m sorry this is so short but I just can’t think of any more to say. I sent over on the beach for a pair of tailor made dungarees boy am I a dogger.
Loads of love
The next letter in chronology is January 27, when Kenney arrived in Pearl Harbor.
 Dogger: this slang word appears to be no longer in use in the context which Kenney used it. I assume it has something to do with acquiring uniforms outside of regular channels and is a corruption of dodger; as in dodging customs, or dodging watch, etc.