Letter to Mother from Witley South Camp, Milford, Surrey

Witley South Camp Sept. 23rd 1916

Dear Mother:–  

I am killing time on a Saturday after noon I read a book in the Bible and now I will write you a short letter. and then get ready for to go down town and have supper and go down We were out on physical drill for an hour and had an hours soluting drill then we all came in and scrubbed our Hut. washed the windows and have it all cleaned up nice so with our ticks and etc. everything is comfortable.

Since I came back from London there don’t seem to be the same desire to go to these little towns as there was. I saw five airships when we were coming from London and they look good, but we are getting used to it now so we an’t as interested in them as we were when we hit here.

11.15 A.M.

Dear Mother:– I have to get this letter written and away today because it is several days since I wrote to you. My paper is all in but two sheets I will have to buy some or go to the Y.M.C.A. to write every time. I was out for a walk with Stanley last night and we are going down to Godalming to the S.A. to and to S.S. the P.M. we will have supper down there at some of the Y.M.C.A’s  We are all sitting around our Hut this fine bright Sunday morning and I think that most of use thinking that this army life an’t to bad as long as they leave use hear after all is said and done.

 I was on floor fatigue this A.M. so I had to help sweep the floor before church parade, we heard a good short talk after the usual English church form of service.

 We had an other raid scare last night we had to stand to and dress at 2 A.M. so we slept in our clothes the rest of the morning.

I havent the slightest cold or cough at all so I am ready for any kind of a winter. I havent had a damp foot yet since I hit here and the weather stays so nice now, but it wont be long until the winter rains starte I think.

I was down to Witley village last night and was in to look at the Soldier institute and we met the English church parson he seemed a fine fellow, he asked use to come up some sunday and spend all our sunday down at Godalming, so we said we would come up sometime

Well Mother it seems your lot to have the hard work to do on the arrival of an other grand child, but I am hoping that it is well over by now, because Frances must be about a month old by this time. I would like to just be able to spend the rest of to day at home with you and the rest but we will just thank God from the bottom of our hearts that we are blessed with health and strength and also for the christian experiences we all have had and that we may continue to have all through life, and may Gods richest blessing be with you all untill we meet again.

One of the boys said at the table that if I could prove to him the he was not living right that he would change his life so after church parade, he came over to my bunk and we got the bible and a little little book I bot at Moose Jaw of little helps to those who want to be Soule winners by Fred K. Scibeat. and we read the scripture on the different points he wanted to talk on untill he said that he couldent change his life in a crowd like this because they would just laugh at him and etc. but we talked for a long time and I don’t even know how much of it will help him, but every chance I get I will help him untill he may change his father is a christian man he said one day a week ago to me you just talk to me like a father would an he told me about his father asking him if there was any thing he could give him before he left and he told him no, so his father went into the house and got him a little vest pocket testament that he has with him yet. his mother has been dead ever since he was a little boy.

The storie just came in that there was two more Zeps brot down last night this side of London that would help if it is so they got one a while ago there at the last raid.

The next letter that comes you folks should have received one from me but I wonder when some more mail will come, I have had nine letters since I hit here but you know if it had have been 5 doz. it would not be enough the next day I would want another such is life. Well Mother dear I am going to go out to dinner will write some more to morrow or tonight and send this so it will starte tomorrow They use a lot of those Lorries they call them here they are little steam engines that hall trucks loaded close to as heavy as the freight cars that they use here. They tell use that the first while they used these engines they surely spoiled the roads as they have to keep on repairing the road with crushed stone and tar it makes them fine. the Lorries travel at about 6 and 10 miles an hours that seem fast but I think they do they remind you of little freights when you see them coming.

One of the boys are playing the mouth organ and the other one is dancing around alone.    

9 P.M.

Dear Mother:–

I should be home but I wan’t to finish this and send it to you.

I took in S.A. meeting in Godalming at 3 P.M. had supper and walked untill 6.10 and went to the Wesleyan Methodist Church heard a good sermon Got out at 7.50 and have walked a little over 3 miles since, so I should ans. my name at roll call at nine so I will have to go on in

good bye as ever you loving son