Letter to Kate, 8th July 1918

July 8th 1918

32507/9th Batt Y & L
C Coy 12 Platoon
Dear Kate
I was glad to receive your letter dated 7th. Sorry I not not wrote this last week but you see we have been up the mountains for about 7 or 8 weeks and all the envelopes were stuck. I hope we get down now for two or three weeks. We have had some trying times up in the front line on what we call sacrifice post up in front of our own wire but I am glad to say we got off alright we only went out after dark till morning. Glad to hear they are going on alright at home, I think it would be best for Annie to stay at home and wait for a bit of work. I have had a letter from Mr Leverton. I bet Willie fancies himself with his new clothes. We have got some very thin khaki and those big helmets they are alright out here as it is very hot on the plains. I might get home on leave late in September if I have good luck but I hope the war will soon finish. I think it as been on long enough. I am glad that you are keeping well as I am in the pink at present. The scenery out here is grand it would be alright in peace time for a holiday. we are half way up the mountain now and can see for miles along the plains it does look well. The people out here have some funny ways and not so clean as English, but in towns they are alright they are all Roman Catholics out here. Write as often as you can and let me know how you are getting on send a book or two if you can.
With best Love
I am a little concerned by the date. Maybe it's not correct. According to the War Diary, Harry's battalion is in the front line on the 8th July. That's not the impression I get from the letter. Also there's the comment that he'd received Kate's letter dated 7th, on the 8th? (Unless it was the 7th June.) Any opinions?

Click on the scans to enlarge


erathwomen said...

Harry says they're half-way up a mountain. Perhaps the war diary is generalized and Harry was pulled back for a bit of rest without being sent back...perhaps we'll find that he's back out in the front line in the future. I would expect the 7th does mean June since it took a little while for mail to arrive and he says they were out of contact for a bit.

Anonymous said...

But he does say that they've "had some trying times up in the frontline..."?

Lt. Ralph Krattli said...

Harry's Letter states that they had trying times at the front lines. The front line in July 1908 was already "up in the mountains"!

Harry was doing night round in No men's land "in front of our own wire" during the day time they would have been pulled back for a bit of rest as mentioned by erathwoman above.

The "7th" does not need be 7th June could be May too as "... all envelopes were stuck" for 7 or 8 weeks before the 8th of July. How long did the delivery of a letter take during the war time? Guess about 2 weeks + ?

I know me is not helping to solve the puzzle.

I am amazed how frequent Harry finds time to write with all that is going on around him.

I like this blog

Anonymous said...

Reference the letter being dated 8th of July. He may have started the letter on the 8th and had to finish it off at a later date.