Whitfield-Barnett correspondence  1917-1921
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Collection Scope and Content Note

This collection is made up of 42 letters that Robin Whitfield wrote to his girlfriend and future wife, Tacey Barnett of Clarksville and Nashville, Tennessee, from 1917-1921. He wrote of his experiences at Camp Dodge, Iowa, and Brest, France, during World War I, and commented on his life in Clarksville after the war.

Whitfield wrote 2 letters from Clarksville in 1917; 17 letters and postcards from Camp Dodge, Iowa, from June 1918-August 1918; 1 letter from Camp Upton, New York, in September 1918; 1 letter from Camp President Lincoln in Brest, France, in June 1919; 2 postcards immediately after his return to the United States in late 1919; and 17 letters from Clarksville from April 1920-September 1921. Two additional letters from Clarksville are undated. At Camp Dodge, Whitfield joined the 804th Pioneer Infantry Regiment, an African American unit. He commented occasionally on the attractiveness of local women (August 14, 1918) and about his fondness for the shooting range (September 20, 1918), but most often he discussed his social activities and his relationship with Barnett. After his return to Clarksville, he continued to write about their relationship and upcoming visits. The collection's postcards include a photographic postcard depicting trench warfare ([July 8, 1918]), a photographic postcard showing Camp Dodge ([July 22, 1918]), 2 postcards with short poems about friendships and relationships ([July 30, 1918] and [October 28, 1919]), and one postcard bearing a logo from the YMCA Troop Train Service ([October 9, 1919]).

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