Private Diary of J.K. Dick Cunyngham Br Gen 8 June 1918

Private Diary of J.K. Dick Cunyngham Br Gen


Mainz Blankenburg Mark



Saturday June 8th.  Called at 7 a.m. had breakfast 7.45 a.m.  Rice & fruit saved from supper.  Walk at 8 a.m. to Hechtsheim & back, with Berner: got back at 10.15 a.m.  9 Medical Officers left about 8 a.m. for camp near Dutch Frontier, lucky fellows to get back again.  Letter from DD dated May 11th.  Consignment of food from Red Cross arrived, gave an issue of biscuits, meat, dripping, milk, cheese, tea or cocoa to each room.  D as usual was lucky & drew an extra tin of mutton.  The stove is a great blessing & our evening meals are getting quite palatable & served hot on hot plates.  Tonight we had soup & fried potatoes & a bread & jam pudding made of mouldy Copenhagen bread.  After steaming, baking & then boiling into a pudding it is surprising how the green & black bread turns out & doesn’t seem to give one any internal trouble, but don’t think it will do for long.  Ogilvy came in after Roll Call to talk about his Education Scheme: the confidential census is going on well, & by getting classes made up in farming, mining, & a hundred other occupations, we hope to help those who must start life anew when they get home again.  Generally speaking most are keen on it, some have no regard for future or how they can support themselves after the war.  What we want is a good reference library & a committee is now sitting to select one but there will always be difficulty in getting the books.  Bed 10.30 p.m.


Letter to Father 8 June 1918


My dear dad,


How are you? I hope you are feeling stronger & better in yourself.  I wish the dickens I could get home for a bit & drag you away somewhere where we could potter round some links a few holes a day.  When I do come home you & Edie Win & I are going away to some quiet spot like Borth for a bit, or anywhere where you and I can play a round in the morning or cool of the evening, & the girls can bathe.


I return the warrants signed. The dividend on the Exchequer Bonds has been paid into Cox & Co.


I believe mother has the dividend warrant for the £150 I brought through Selfridges. She mentioned it in one of her letters to me while the rush was on in April & I hadn’t time to think about         it then.  I have since written about it to her but had no reply as yet.


I am glad you liked the chit from the Chief Engineer. I was rather pleased about it myself but it is a silly characteristic of the Englishman to assume indifference.  The original is in the office here & when I leave the school I shall ask them for it.


Thought it was so nice because it is very rarely one gets thanks nowadays & the little that comes one’s way is quite gratifying. I expect you find it the same when grateful coal kings write & tell you they are thankful to you that things are going well & smoothly: I am not getting leave just at present but could do with a bit.  I am looking forward to many a long talk with you.


By the way dad tell them at B’pool to keep a tight hand on that letter as there are various details on it that are confidential & I shouldn’t like them to get about.


The first week of the course is over. They are an extraordinarily good lot of fellows on it.  Their spirit is wonderful.  They are cheerful & confident & a good example to anyone who may be inclined to be a doubting Thomas.


Col. Murray is home.  He is downright ill.  He was given a month’s leave but has written since he was home & says the doctors say it will be 4 months before he is well.  I am awfully sorry as it looks as though we shall lose him, & a decent fellow & a man at the top makes all the difference to a show like this.  I am not very taken with the man who I believe is coming.


I must dry up. I do hope you are better dad.  Where are you thinking of going to?

What is this farm idea?

With very best love to you both

Your loving son