HomeHome    SearchSearch    PrintPrint    Login - User: anonymousLogin    BookmarkBookmark

» Show All     «Prev «1 ... 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 ... 93» Next»

Auntie Nancie Letters No 1

Uncle David has four letters from Auntie Nancie which, although apparently incomplete, contain a lot of interesting family history memories. They are undated, but probably written in the 1980s. Written on pages torn from reporter – style notebook, the letters were out of order. I have tried to link them together but can’t guarantee total accuracy. The punctuation and spelling is mostly Auntie Nancie’s. She uses exclamation marks nearly as much as I do!!!

This is letter No 1

transcribed by Ruairidh Greig 9 Nov 2008

London House
35B Fore street

Dear Sheila
I have a book here called “Other paths to Glory” written around a man researching the first world war on the Somme- I am reading the bit about the 10th Lincolns- the Chums Regiment formed by Mr Stream – headmaster of the old Grimsby college “Wintringham Sec” in other words. Daddy was with them before they went to the front – just going into the Navy in time to escape the almost annihilation of the whole company at Lochnagar Crater, a hole a hundred feet deep and 450 feet across where they blew up the Schwaben Habe strongpoint.
The 10th Lincolns took it – Daddy’s school pals – (which is as far as they got - !!! I am so fascinated by the information here I felt I had to tell you all about it – do you know on the Somme we lost fifty seven thousand men in a few hours - ! I feel so utterly amazed that I didn’t know before – the men who came back just didn’t talk about the horrors – it is only recently that most of it is coming out – a whole generation of young men wiped out on both sides, by this time (1916) – all of our Crack Regiments were more or less wiped out and the (ordinary blokes) formed the ‘Chums’ of Grimsby, did the fighting and what wonderful fighters they must have been too – Remember Sheila Armistice Day at School – standing in front of the little memorial – the song we sang in church – Mother and the Aunties all sad and quiet, big red poppies –

“There is an old belief
that from some solemn shore
Beyond that sphere of grief
Dear friends shall meet once more
Serene in changeless prime
Of body and of soul
That creed I fain would
Keep, that hope I’ll ne’er forgoe
Eternal be their sleep
Eternal – Eternal –
If not to waken so!
Beyond that sphere of time and Sin
And fates control
Serene in changeless prime”

We all sang that beautiful thing with great unction – but did we realise what those men had to do – and go through -?
Imagine Grandma thinking & dreaming nightmares about Uncle Jimmie – never found in all that mud and blood & horror – poor soul – I went through enough when Roger was under the sea off the Falklands – but that lot went on for four years until most were killed – for what-?
I remember getting a letter from one of the teachers from School Miss – cant remember her name she was the Chemistry Mistress – (when John was killed) I had never realised that she had lost a fiancé ‘out there’ Also Mrs Newbury – she did too – then married poor ‘Bill@ who was racked with asthmatic coughing after being Gassed! And we used to be impatient and laugh when he had to go outside to cough his lungs up! God – we never realised, total war is terrible.

Rest of sheet blank

Owner/SourceRuairidh Greig
Linked toNancie Urquhart MILLER

» Show All     «Prev «1 ... 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 ... 93» Next»