My mother was looking through an old box if my grandfather’s who passed away years ago and found these mementos from his time serving in WWII. The photos are from Palermo, Naples and other parts of Sicily. The post card is a bit of a mystery, we’re not sure exactly why he had it considering it is dated 1932. My sister and I suspect somewhat dubious origins, and think that it was prized for the picture of an Italian soldier on the front. The five lira is a piece of Allied Military Currency that was used during war time to ensure that the US dollar didn’t flood the economy of a recently occupied city and cause inflation.
My grandfather never talked about his time overseas during the war except for a few stories so it was interesting seeing these photos and reading the letters. Part of the reason I chose to go to Italy for my junior year abroad was him. My mother always told me that he would say he could be happy to never leave Maine again except for Italy. Italy was worth going back to. He never got to return, but so far two of his granddaughters have made the trip and I’ll be the third.