Love letters from WWI found in Indiana Jasper home

Courtesy NBC News

JASPER, IN (WFIE) - Love letters from World War I were found hidden away in a Jasper, Indiana home during a remodel.

Those letters, dated July 1918, were found tucked away inside insulation of Phil Mathies' attic.

Phil says he and his wife hired a contractor to begin work upstairs to build a new bathroom and the first step was to rewire their storage room.

The contractor was pulling the yellowed, torn, and mysterious letters out of the attic wall and placed them on the floor. That's when Phil, his wife, and his sister, Barbara, began reading them.

Clement Berger was writing the letters for his sweetheart, Mary Borho, while he was preparing for deployment in World War I.

Phil and Barbara were determined to find Mary and Clement's relatives. Once the letters were published in the local newspaper, they got the response they were looking for.

Sisters Mary McCune and Nancy Teder are Mary and Clem's nieces who still live in Jasper and plan to get the letters from Phil.

The war officially ended in June 1919 and Mary and Clem got married a year later.

No one is sure how the letters ended up in Phil's attic, but Mary and Clem's relatives are glad they were saved.

"We have to thank Barb and Phil for taking care of them the way they did," said Nancy. "It was just an amazing find."

The relatives of Mary and Clem, who still live in Jasper, say they will get the letters from Barbara Tuesday night.

They say the letters will be kept in Louisville with Mary and Clem's grandchildren.


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