Letters from the Great War – “We are right in the Path of the German Warships”

Wittey Camp, April 9th, 1916 – (Letter #12) 

Dear Brother;

Jack and B, your most welcome letter and Sunday Globe received last week. Glad to hear you are all in the pink as this leaves me at present. Well, Jack, they keep us on the move. We left Codford last week and thank God for that. It was the worst place in England. I think we are now in a very nice camp. We are 35 miles from London. It is a fine place, a good dry camp and we are handy a town, only five miles from a place called Godalming, but we call it God Help Me. We are right in the path of the German airships. They went over our camp three times last week when they made their raids, but they were flying so high.

We can’t leave our camp now as I am in No. 1 platoon and I have to mount gun. I am number one man that pushes the double button. Jack, we have been under orders to go this past month. We may go any minute or we might be here for three months yet. We had our last laugh. I had six days, went to Southport to my old billet and had 8 shillings to spend, that is about $1.75. And since we came back, we only get a shilling a week, that is 24 cents in American money, by God, can’t buy tobacco on that. We will go to Egypt or Mesopotamia, as we got our light drill suits for a hot climate.

Are you working every day? Hope you are. I had a letter from Ina yesterday. Only had one letter from home since December 15th, I write every week. I would like to know where in hell all the letters go to. I get tired writing and getting no answer. There were Canadians in this camp before we came. They are now in Aldershot. It is not very far from here. I am going there next Sunday if I can scrape up the fare. That is the hell of it – can’t go any place without some money. We get hell and no money.

How is Dave Ross? I wrote to Flo and Eugene, but never got an answer. Well, Jack, I will have to come to a close for this time. When you answer this letter, register it, as I am sure of not being here and then I am sure of getting it. Give Teddy and Mary a kiss for me. Our last draft of machine gun men got all cut up and killed and I suppose I will get the same. To hell with them as long as I get a few of them first.

Give my love and best regards to all friends, not forgetting yourself and B.

Editor’s Notes:

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