France, Dec 30, 1917

My dear wife;-

I was partly expecting a letter from you in the mail to day but none arrived. Are you sorry yet that you did it? I hope not. I am enclosing you another small list of persons whom I should like to receive announcements. You will see that I am not very sure of the addresses of some of them. Perhaps also you have already included some of the names in your list. Regarding the officers of the 31st named in my previous list I should like the name of Major C. H. Westmore added if you decide to send to any particular officers of the unit. Do you know whether or not Mrs. R.G. Brett is still alive? I think she is, although in the back of my mind I have a sort of an idea that I have heard something about her death since I came to Europe. In any case I should like the old Doctor to have an announcement.

Our weather is still very miserable. The ground is still covered with snow but it is not quite so frosty as during the past few days. I went to church parade this morning and this afternoon have been reading and letter writing. I have acknowledged 3 Christmas parcels since I returned and still have 4 to open and acknowledge. I wrote to Mrs. A.G. Clarke this afternoon. She sent me a big parcel containing candy, socks, maple sugar, and all sorts of things. I shall not open up any more until we get the contents of some of those already investigated at least partially consumed. I like to write and thank the sender as soon as I open a parcel before I forget what it contained.

Now for a terrible confession: I have not yet written to Major Mayhood but shall do so this evening. I shall address it to No 12 Canadian General Hospital Bramshott and I trust he will receive it alright.

I am dreaming about you every night and sometimes, often in fact, I wonder when and where I shall see you again. You are very very dear to me my sweet girl and I am looking forward longingly to the time when we can really begin living our lives together. In the meantime I must get on with my small part in the war. There is a long rough road ahead of us.

Kind regards to Mrs. Daughty.

Yours ever

Harold W McGill

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Published in: on September 10, 2007 at 8:00 am  Leave a Comment  

Nov 6, 1917

Dearest Emma; –

Your letters of Oct 27 & 28 reached me the same day and were handed to me just as I was getting into a motor ambulance to make a move. I read them as I traveled along the road. Thank you very much for the flowers; we do not see much of that sort of thing where we are at present. I am sure you will look very pretty in your new dress as indeed you do in any case. I was nearly saying “without it”, but that expression would be liable to mis-interpretation, might it not? Your letter of Oct 29 came 3 days ago, since when I have not heard from you.

It is now 4 A.M. and a fine morning with the moon showing between the clouds. The weather lately has not been at all bad for the time of year. It is very much better than that we had at this time last year. November and December are the two most gloomy and unpleasant months out here and if we get a reasonably fine November the winter will be appreciably shortened. There has been no rain for the past several days.

I had fully intended writing you a whiz bang last night but went off to bed at 10 P.M. without doing it. You see I was up at 3 A.M. yesterday morning and kept fairly busy all day. This morning my reveille was 2:30 A.M. and I got up to get a few lorry loads of men and supplied sent up the line. It is now just after 4 A.M. and I have everything and everybody sent safely off. This will probably be the only chance I shall get to-day to talk to my sweetheart.

We are now clearing the line and the C.O. has given me a safety first job, i.e. I am back at Hq. looking after the forwarding of relief in personnel, supplies and a dozen and one other things. I have not dressed a wounded man since we took over the line. It is quite an unusual experience for me during active operations. I suppose the C.O. thinks I had my share of the front line work during my two years with the battalion.

The place is very quiet except for the noise of transport passing on the road, and nearly everybody is sleeping. I wish you were beside me so that I could take you in my arms and stroke your hair. Do you know it is a long time since I first had a wish to do that, but I haven’t had much in the way of opportunities have I? Isn’t this silly stuff to be committing to paper? You had better burn this letter when you have read it; or perhaps I shall before I post it and then write you a partially sensible one. I send my best love.

Yours ever

Harold W. McGill

Published in: on June 4, 2007 at 8:00 am  Leave a Comment