May 11, 1943


Lt. D. Alquist

Cp. Roberts, Calif.

Dear Folks:

The ride from K.C. to here has been a long & hard one. The train is an old one & the scenery not too good. Hope for a better trip from here in. Will write in L.A.





This postcard is a bit of a harbinger of letters to come when Dorance heads overseas to join the war. 1943 is certainly different than 2019, and some of the future letters from Lt. Dip will contain uncomfortable depictions of unfamiliar people. The fact that this postcard can be sent with no comment about its subject matter is indicative of the times. The inscription reads:

Weird and savage is the famous Apache “Devil Dance”, held each July fourth on the Mescalero Apache Indian reservation, located in the Sacramento Mountains of southeastern New Mexico. Once the most war-like of Indian tribes in the Southwest, the Apaches are slowly adapting civilization.

I will be presenting Dorance’s letters without editing them for content. They will sometimes be difficult to reconcile with the nice Minnesota boy that we’ve seen so far in his letters home to his family but I want to present the reality of war.

Please feel free to let me know what you think via email at

Christian Olsen