Monday, October 28, 2019

Ulithi--Christmas in February

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Tuesday 6 February 1945, 7:00 PM
My Dearest,
     How is my Darling today? How's about a kiss? Gee thanks, Honey, but take it easy, what will the censor say?
     Worked all morning as usual. Got to my room about 11:15 AM. Surprise! Mail! I finally got the package containing socks, "vitamin pills," American Mercury Magazines etc. I also got a beautiful leather picture frame folder from Deb and Dave. In addition I got some Bureau of Medicine and Surgery Bulletins, the National Jewish Monthly and a greeting card from the Goodfriends mailed on November 30. Hope the rest of the packages come through soon.
     The socks are not longies and are swell. If you haven't done so already how about half a dozen more. Got hold of an "Omnibus," a magazine with best seller condensations. It had "Immortal Wife" and I read it between 4:15 and 5:30 PM this evening. Then I censored some mail, showered and dressed for dinner. Enjoyed the breeze topside and here I am.
     Now that I have some coloring pencils, I'll do another Valentine to add to your collection. I finished "Fountainhead" last night and I must say all the characters are most unusual. It's hard to believe people would act like they are portrayed. However it was most enjoyable and easy to read. In fact it was about 1:30 AM when I finished and turned the light out.
     Darling do you remember when I wanted to read at night and you wanted to turn the lights out and go to sleep? Well I'll let you turn the lights out but I don't know about the rest.
Good night honey until tomorrow.

Loving you always,

Friday, October 25, 2019

Ulitihi--Court Martial

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Monday 5 February 1945, 7:10 PM
My Darling,
     Here I am once more. Just the usual routine this morning. Worked on patients until 11:15 AM and then I read a little from "Fountainhead."
     After lunch, except for an hour in my office, I spent the afternoon listening in on a court martial. It was very interesting but I can't tell you anything about it.
     At 4:30 PM I went to my room, stripped down to my skivvies and read some more until 5:15 PM. Then I censored a few letters, showered and dressed for dinner.
     After eating we stood up on the bridge and enjoyed the cool ocean breeze. Thought for sure it would rain, but the clouds passed on with very few drops coming down. We have "See You in St. Louis" tonight so I hope it doesn't rain during the movie.
     There was no mail for me today so I have nothing more to talk about.
     All kinds of talk as to how long we'll be here but none of it seems reliable. Guess I'll just have to wait and see.
     By the way Sweet, have I told you I love you lately? Well I do and I miss you too. Poetic aren't I, but very corny too.
     Darling do you remember when you'd bring me my dinner and ride with me the summer I operated a tram on the ocean front? That was ages ago and we were just two happy kids in love. Well, we're not kids anymore but we're still that way about each other.
     I'm going to sign off now Honey. Good night. I'll see you in my dreams.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Ulithi--Marine Corps

  Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, FPO San Francisco
Sunday 4 February 1945, 7:20 PM
Dearest Eleanor
     Happy days! Got nine letters today, all from you except one which was from your mother. This being Sunday, I had services arranged on board so that took up my morning.
     I did see several patients this afternoon but really I didn't overwork. Since last night we've had two appendectomies and a third scheduled for tonight at 10:00 PM. I'll probably go to the movie and then attend the "opening." The movie tonight is the "Falcon Comes to Hollywood" and I hope it's interesting.
     Sweet, those snaps are swell but I have two complaints. First, no picture of you and second, only one of Linda. Norma is simply adorable and I had an overwhelming desire to have her here so I could cuddle her in my arms. Imagine how a picture of you would affect me.
     Sorry about your unpleasant evening at the "G's." However please don't let all those little things get you. Really it isn't worthwhile. Sounds like the affair at the Brentwood was quite swanky even if oversold.
     I do hope Dave does make warrant officer but I doubt that he'll go through officers training. The Marine Corps training is extremely rugged but then who can tell.
     Send Sadie her camera. Colored snaps can be taken with a miniature camera and enlarged. Probably the cost is no more than the way we have been getting our colored pictures.
     For a while you seemed so busy and in such a better frame of mind that my mind was relieved. Now you are drifting back and letting everything get you down. Snap out of it Sweet, you owe it to yourself and our girls.
     Saw "Together Again" recently. Glad you enjoyed it.  
     The four months began Jan 1 and ends April 30. I still think we should buy another $1000 bond. The income tax for 1944 won't be much over $100. A series "G" bond can always be cashed in. Beside checking accounts don't produce any interest and every bit extra help. I'm going to the movie now and will finish later.
10:15 PM
     Back again honey. The Falcon movie was pretty good and took up two hours of my time.
     The records I got were those of the kids wishing me a happy birthday. The papers you sent were just what I was looking for. Now my file is complete.
     One minute you tell me how important money is and the next you tell me about nursery school at $5 a week. Make up your mind, gal. That is better than $20 a month that could well be saved. Anyway I expect to be home by fall and we'll discuss it further.
     Still getting calls to teach, I see. Well I hope you aren't doing too much. Seems to me you were happier when you were getting out more with your friends, however you know best.
     Commuting from Long Beach is a small problem. Thousands who are employed in war production plants do it every day. Leon is all wet as usual!
     Wish I could tell you about the beach around here but I really can't so please don't ask. Anything I can say I will, you know that.
     Talking about something to send the other night we were talking about kosher dill pickles and imported salami. How about that? Think you could send me some? I could really go for one of our nite-nite snacks right now.
     I see with Linda something new has been added. What's causing her nervousness? Find out if you can. After all there is little I can suggest so far away. She looks thin in the snap. Maybe a tonic or some Vitamin B would help. Have her checked and find out. However I'm sure that the change you are planning will help a lot. Do you remember how well she ate at Catalina and Arrowhead? I won't worry because I know you'll do what is necessary.
     So much for the mail. Sweet do you remember when you, Linda, and I rented the pony and wagon in Catalina? Didn't we have fun? Didn't we have fun? Didn't we always? Well we will again.
     I'm signing off now. Good night my love, my one and only darling wife.


Dave Gindoff, Marine
Gil's brother-in-law

Friday, October 18, 2019

Ulithi--War News

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Saturday 3 February 1945, 10:15 P.M.
Dearest Eleanor,
     Just got back from the movies. We had "The Thin Man Comes Home" with William Powell and Myrna Loy. It was pretty good. Last night's "Carolina Blues" was very poor but it did help pass a couple of hours what with shorts and such.
     Today was an unusually hot day with very little breeze to make it comfortable. Did very little work this morning. Was standing by for inspection. However I made up for it this afternoon by seeing six patients.
     Was through with work around four. Had a cold, refreshing "coke" and then retired to my room, stripped down to my "skivvies" and read a little from "Fountainhead." Soon it was 5:15 P.M. and time to shower and dress for dinner.
     After eating I indulged in the usual routine of enjoying the cool evening breeze on the bridge deck, but not for long. Soon it began to rain so I had to go below deck for shelter.
     I'm enclosing a valentine (?) someone dreamed up. But the sentiment is way off the beam. Do you think so? Well anyway! Add it to your collection.
     The mail brought me just one letter, a note from my mother mailed the 26th. Besides all the packages I'm expecting, I'm missing letters of the 21st, 22nd, 23rd and 24th. I'll probably get them very soon now (I hope).
     Nothing new out here. However the war news is most encouraging on both fronts. It does look that there is a good chance of a sudden collapse in Germany. As far as Japan is concerned, I wouldn't be surprised to see her surrender once the Philippines have been completely retaken. Japan has much to gain by an early surrender and thus preserve her industry in Japan proper. Then she can hope for a comeback and another try again in 25-50 years just as Germany did after the First World War. However I do hope that this time we'll win the peace as well as the war and give neither Germany nor Japan the chance to become strong enough to wage war again.
     We've been at this place a lot longer now than I'd ever expected. I do hope that we get out of here before the real hot weather sets in. However no one tells me anything. We could leave tomorrow or six weeks from now and then again we could stay here until June or July. Who knows?
     Oh well, everyday is that much closer to my homecoming and the end of the war. One thing I'm pretty sure of now. When I do get back to the states, I'll never have to leave you again.
     I'm all run out now Sweet, so I'll sign off with love and kisses to all my girls. Good night and pleasant dreams.

Valentine (?) someone dreamed up

Wednesday, October 16, 2019


Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Friday 2 February 1945, 7:05 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     Just another routine day today. Worked all morning and finished up at 11:15 AM. Had lunch and then collected the monthly mess bill from the wardroom officers.
     It was cloudy and rainy looking but I went up on the poop deck anyway and got a half hour of sun.
     This being Friday, "field day" was the order of the day this afternoon. My corpsman worked, cleaning and polishing, and I caught up on my book work.
     This morning I got a letter from you dated the 24th and two this afternoon of the 23rd. Also got one from your mother.
     Now to your letters. You seem to be teaching regularly. I do hope it isn't too much for you even at $10 a day. Why are you so anxious to lose weight? I love you just the way you are, tummy and all. I haven't been on the scale lately but I don't believe my weight has varied any from what it was when I came aboard, 170 lbs. clothes and all. By the way I slipped the other morning and lost my mustache. Don't believe I'll ever raise another.
     I have a recollection of the party at Ruth's that you mention but a very faint one at that.
     I haven't started "Fountainhead" yet. I finished "Tree Grows in Brooklyn" last night and that book is next. I would enjoy "Immortal Wife" so send it along. I do believe that Xmas mail will soon be caught up and that packages will get out here in about thirty days.
     As long as you keep getting letters from me I don't see how you could expect me to phone you. After all air mail goes so much faster than any ship. Just take it easy dear and hope. I still think that I have a mighty good chance to get back when my year is up and something could happen and bring me back sooner.
     Yes dear I got my fifth assignment finished and on its way. The sixth should be ready to go by the end of this month.
     I'm glad that Linda is behaving so well. I do hope that Norma snaps out of it and gives you more rest at night. Losing an hour or two of sleep just spoils the following day completely.
     I hope you work out something nice at Arrowhead for this summer. If I get back and you're there I'd rather spend our time up there together than anywhere else. After all that was the locale of "our first night," wasn't it?
     Boy I sure could use some of that cold weather. I do hope we move on before long. The summer and late spring out here are just hellish. It's hot enough in the winter. I'd just as soon scram. However I'm just a (j.g.) in the dental corps and don't run the Navy. It's probably a good thing for the Navy.
     The movie tonight "Carolina Blues with Kay Kaiser and Ann Miller and is rated only fair. Guess I'll go anyway.
     Am signing off now darling. Good night with love and kisses to my three girls.
Yours always,

Gil doesn't mention going to ashore for a few, but here is a chit.

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Ulithi--Amplifier Burnt Out

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Thursday 1 February 1945, 9:15 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     Hello darling, this has been a "bitch" of a day, but all is well that ends well. I began this day with my regular appointments and was busy all morning. After lunch I continued my regular work routine. At 2:00 PM I began to examine some fifteen odd men who hadn't reported in for examinations when they were supposed to.
     After that I went to work on the wardroom statement. First I was $40 short, then I was $65 ahead. At 4:00 PM I gave up in disgust still some $60 ahead. As I came on deck I ran into a few officers on their way ashore for a few drinks, so I grabbed my cap and became one of the party.
     We went ashore and spent the most pleasant couple of hours since we have been at this place and then we returned to the ship.
     The stewards fixed us a late snack and we even had some ice cream for dessert. Someone brought it aboard to eat after the movies and we just got into it.
     By then it was movie time so we went up on deck. But the amplifier had burned out. After waiting an hour it began to rain so we gave the whole thing up.
     Got one letter from you postmarked the 21st. It is the one with Anne C's letter. Sounds like she'll be glad when she gets back to Santa Monica.
     Now to your letter. "Meet Me in St. Louis" sounds OK. I hope we get it soon. Hope you get to the Victory Ball though I'll bet you don't get in, in spite of Dave's uniform.
     Looks like the old feud of Marty versus Ben and Jerry goes merrily on. I bet Marty wins.
     I'll look for "Immortal Wife" but I haven't heard anyone comment on that book.
     Mary and Willie will go right on. Mary knew what the score was long ago. No matter what she says now, she'll just have to make the best of a bad bargain.
     As you probably gathered by now, I'm a little high but really I don't care. I feel much better than I did at 4:00 PM.
     Sweetheart, do you remember when for lack of anything better to do Saturday nights we'd get together with another couple and go to the Band Box for a sandwich and the "naughty" entertainment of Pete and Billy Snyder et al? Do Abbott and Costello still run that joint or did they give that up as a bad venture? Do you ever see the Posners? Just wondering?
     Well darling I really should close and turn in. Good night Honey with loads of love,
Your lonely,

U.S.S. Ocelot crew
Movie screen in background
Gil front row, on right end

Thursday, October 10, 2019


Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Wednesday 31 January 1945, 10:25 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     Have been busy all day. As a matter of fact I just finished working. In spite of all my activity I didn't do a lick of dentistry all day. Spent all morning and part of the afternoon closing the wardroom mess books.   Turned the monthly return over to my corpsman to type up. I just rechecked and found several errors, so it'll have to be redone.
     Completed that jigsaw puzzle before dinner tonight so I'll break out another one. I've spent about a 1-1/2 hours a day for the past three days so you can see that it is quite involved.
     After supper the doctor and I counted the paymasters money and certified the amount he was reporting on hand. Handling more than a million dollars should give one some kind of a thrill but somehow it just seemed like so much paper.
     The movie tonight was "Brazil" with Virginia Bruce and Tito Guizar. Although the movie wasn't rated highly I did enjoy the music and especially the samba routine of Velez and Yolanda. By the way last night's movie "Together Again" was most enjoyable. You should see it if you haven't.
     No mail today. Never did find yesterday's misplaced letter. One of the officers saw the postmark which was Bonner Springs, Kansas. Must have been from that Mrs. Dingey that I wrote you about. Haven't had any mail since last week so I do hope I get some tomorrow.
     Nothing more that is new or exciting. Do you remember when you and I were young and went to the dental school dance at the Elks Club? Those days seem like a dream of long ago, but we did have fun then. When I get back we'll have wonderful times together, you and I and our two girls.
     I'm going to sign off now Sweet, good night, I'll see you in my dreams.

Bonner Springs, Kansas Postmark

Monday, October 7, 2019

Ulithi--Letter Disappeared

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Tuesday 30 January 1945, 7:15 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     Am I mad. A letter came for me today and it disappeared. I know there was actually a letter because three officers and one of the steward mates saw it in the wardroom but "it ain't there anymore." It wasn't from you is all I know about it. Maybe it'll turn up tomorrow.
     Been keeping quite busy these days doing dentistry. Just got a request from another ship to take care of forty men. Am planning to take them next week, a few every day and clean them up. Anyway those in addition to what I already have lined up should keep me going.
     Worked steadily today until 3:00 PM. I really don't have much time to devote to my wardroom mess treasurer's job or my welfare job. However primarily I'm a dental officer and I'll attend to that job and let the rest ride until I can find time.
     At three I returned to my room and caught up on my book work. Then I relaxed with the jigsaw puzzle I'm working on. It's a dilly 16x20 inches and 500 pieces. Anyway it was 5:15 before I knew it and then I showered and dressed for dinner.
     It has rained on and off this afternoon and is raining now. I do hope it lets up because we have a good movie, Charles Boyer and Irene Dunne in "Together Again." I'll go anyway but I'd rather see it dry than all wet.
     Nothing new out here, just the same sixes and sevens. I owe everyone letters but it'll be some time before I catch up.
Sweetheart, do you remember how much fun we had on our trip east in 1940 and how glad we were to get home again? Well that was nothing compared to how I'll feel when I get home from here.
     No more for now Honey. Good night and pleasant dreams. Till tomorrow.


Part of the missing letter?

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Ulithi--Heat Rash

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Monday 29 January 1945, 7:15 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     Hello darling, here I am again. Had quite a busy morning and wasn't through with work until after eleven. Then I went to my room and read until lunch time.
     I broke out with heat rash so after lunch I went up of the poop deck, stripped down and got the sun for a half hour. Sunshine seems to be the best remedy for this type of rash.
     Then back to my office for more work. I was all cleared up by 3:00 PM so I had a coke for a little refresher and censored some mail. By then it was four o'clock so I stripped down to my skivvies (shorts to you) and worked on a jigsaw puzzle until it was time to shower and dress for dinner.
     After eating a few of us stood out on the bridge deck enjoying the cool refreshing ocean breeze. And so here I am.
     There was only one letter. It was from Ambie. He is en route to San Francisco and promised to phone you when he gets there. He seems to be feeling very well. No doubt the fact that he is returning to the states has helped him a lot.
     The movie last night, "Belle of the Yukon," had lots of stars and possibilities, but it was only fair. Tonight we have Merle Oberon and Franchot Tone in "Dark Waters" and I do hope it's good. The story was run in the Post magazine recently.
     Nothing that is new, Sweet, so I'm going to sign off. Good night, I'll see you in my dreams.

U.S.S. Ocelot

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Ulithi--Admiral Halsey

Lt. (j.g.) Gilbert Steingart
U.S.S. Ocelot, F.P.O. San Francisco
Sunday 28 January 1945, 7:15 PM
Dearest Eleanor,
     More mail today! I'm just like a kid with a new toy. Got five letters today, three from you, one of the 13th and two of the 20th. Also I got one letter from Ruth and one from Libby.
     I'm glad the package arrived and you like what I sent. That charm bracelet is expensive. It is sterling silver but I don't remember what it cost. Now to you other two letters.
     I hope you aren't overdoing with your teaching. Your health is more important than the money so please be careful.
     Can't understand why Rose wants her son-in-law to go in with someone else. If he has any ability at all and with the present shortage of doctors he should get started on his own now and get established while the getting is good. But then they're nuts anyway.
     Talking about the re-examining censor, one of the officers made some thoughtless remarks in one of his letters and another officer passed it. The re-examiner checked it and now hell is a popping. A copy of the letter has been sent to Admiral Halsey and I guess we haven't heard the last of it yet. Just goes to show how careful one must be in what he says in his letter.
     I didn't know the shells turned over on the neck. If they do I'll be able to fix the necklaces when I get home. However all the necklaces I've seen are made the same way. I'll be able to work out something with the chains you send me though I do wish I had one longer one.
     As far as Arrowhead is concerned, do as you see fit. When I said "To hell with a couple hundred bucks" I meant that if I happened to get home when you were planning to go up there, we wouldn't care if we had to lose the money to be together?
     So you feel rich and "phat," with all the money you made. Well take it easy Honey and have fun spending what you make.
     Scuttlebutt is like that. Now I don't know anything but am still hopeful.
     The movie last night "Hi Beautiful" was worse than I expected. Skip it when it comes around. Tonight we have "Belle of the Yukon" with Gypsy Rose Lee, Dinah Shore and Randolph Scott. It should be good.
     Today being Sunday I had a light work schedule. Did a lot of visiting and guessing what will come next. With our recent successes things look quite bright and I really think that things are going to blow up sudden-like for the Japs. I have very good reasons for saying so.
     Nothing more for now Sweetheart. Goodnight and pleasant dreams of things to come when we are together again.

Admiral Halsey