Attu, Alaska Territory

October 22, 1943

While onboard ship I had plenty of opportunity to practice on the violin. The ship’s library had a collection of musical instruments. I really enjoyed myself and surprised everyone (and even entertained some) by playing the violin. There were also banjos and guitars, and we spent many pleasant hours playing and singing on the back of the ship as we rolled along o’er the deep blue sea. There was plenty of competition from a number of real “fiddlers” whose square dances and Arkansas-Tennessee hill-billy music proved to be more popular with the men than any other type of music.

Except for the blue fox, I know of no other animals on the island [Attu]. There were of course many varieties of wild birds, and the cold clear streams were choked with giant salmon and other fish.

There are no trees on the Island, but it is carpeted with tundra. Just like a thick colorful Persian rug. The Tundra covers the rugged terrain of Attu. The tundra is as thick as a mattress, and interwoven are millions of tiny flowers of all colors which begin to bloom as soon as the snow had melted.