George Ryan’s letter home dated 25 Mar 1915

George Ryan’s letter home dated 25 Mar 1915

Barrackpore

Bengal.

India.

25 Mar 1915

 

Dear Edie,

 

Your letter of 24th Feb received.  I hope you use all your fingers on the type-writer.  It’s very nicely done & set out but never type your name at the end.  Always sign a letter, else it might come from anybody for all the receiver knows.  (Ahem.)  Hope you passed your shorthand exam.  No, I didn’t know I’d got any certs to come, I’d forgotten all about sitting for those exams.  Please let me know what certs they are & for what speed.

 

Should like to have seen & heard you playing your duet with Mr. Beake, I suppose he saw you home safely afterwards.

 

Sorry to hear you have to work an hour longer; I suppose you miss your early evening class.

 

Remember me to Alf Tyrrell

Yr loving brother

George XX

 

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George Ryan’s letter home dated 25 Mar 1915

George Ryan’s letter home dated 25 Mar 1915

Barrackpore

Bengal.

India.

25 Mar 1915

 

Dear May,

 

Your letter of 25th Feb to hand but what was the matter when you wrote it.  You miss out a word in the very first line, you miss a whole line at the bottom of the page, & sundry other slips etc.  Are you in love or were you in a hurry to get out.  Judging by your writing I should say you were in a terrific hurry.  You also commence by saying you’ve got nothing to tell me & then fill up 2 pages.  But you are not the only one that does that; Ma did it the other week.  It’s not a very cheerful thing to read at the beginning of a letter.

 

Glad to hear you are to be made a book keeper. I hope it will be at W.G. as you want it there.

 

We had a race-meeting here last Saturday. It seemed quite like London to see so many motors about; & they do fly along.  Apparently there’s no speed limit out here.  The R.F.A. (Royal Field Artillery) had one race at the meeting for a few of their horses.  There’s another meeting next Saturday.

 

You need not be afraid of me getting fat. We get plenty of exercise & any “overweight” is soon sweated out of us.  It is hot here now.

 

Yr loving brother

George XX

 

George Ryan’s letter home dated 25 Mar 1915

George Ryan’s letter home dated 25 Mar 1915

Barrackpore

Bengal.

India.

25 Mar 1915

 

Dear M & F,

 

Thanks for your note at the foot of Edie’s letter of Feb 26th.  I had a letter from Bert at Rouen; I expect he’s in the thick of it now.

 

Well as you see we are still here. We shan’t leave this week now; we expect to go next Thursday.  This place doesn’t seem to have agreed with me this last week, my inside has been a bit out of order.  I’ve had a few doses of medicine & feel almost right again now.  But I think the change of air will do me good.

 

We had a thunderstorm every evening this week. (Perhaps it was that that upset me.)  One night the lightning was very vivid; every 4 or 5 seconds, it fairly lit up the whole place, & the rain comes down in sheets.

 

Further news in girls’ letters.

Hoping you are all well, Love to all,

Yr affec son

George

 

I suppose you are keeping all my letters?

 

George Ryan’s letter home dated 31 Mar 1915

George Ryan’s letter home dated 31 Mar 1915

Barrackpore

Bengal

India.

31 Mar 1915

 

Dear M & F,

 

Your letter of Mar 5th received.  Thank you for the Easter Card.  It’s the first mail we’ve received direct here & it’s arrived in record time, the letters only taking 22 days.  You do not say whether you received the pound from the office; (on the 1st Mar).  I suppose you did, but please let me know.  You evidently mis-understood my letter that you were answering, it was my fault I expect: when I’ve mentioned about getting wet through I’ve meant with perspiration, not rain.  We do not have to wear our tunics now, except on Church Parade.  We wear our equipment over our shirts so it’s much cooler.  It would look funny in England, soldiers marching about in shirt sleeves, but there’s nobody round here to see us.  Of course we have to wear our tunics outside the barracks, when we are not on parade.

 

Well, as you see, we have not gone to Darjeeling yet & we’ve no idea yet when we are going.  It might mean that we are all going to leave here soon, but there’s no telling.  As you know was the case when we left Dinapore, we are not given a month’s notice to shift.  We shall be here one day & a few hundreds of miles away the next.  By the way it’s been rumoured this last week that we should be leaving shortly for somewhere on the Persian Gulf, but that’s all it is at present – a rumour.

 

We’ve had some more thunderstorms this week: they are a sight. Flashes of lightning every 3 or 4 seconds & they light up the whole place as if by a flash of a big arc lamp & it lasts for hours sometimes.  I was on guard y’day & it looked as if we were in for it again in the evening; there was a little lightening but it all blew over & turned out a glorious night.  It was lovely between 1 & 3 a.m. when I was on duty, full moon shining; all the same I thought of my nice soft bed at 8 B. Rd & so I did between 3 & 6 when I tried to get some sleep.  I gave it up about 5 & tried to catch a few of the mosquitoes that had got into my net.  You can’t sleep once one of those things get into your net.

 

You made my mouth water at mention of your marmalade. We have to pay 7d a tin for it here & 9d for jam.  They are only small tins.  They say they contain 1 lb but I reckon it’s a jolly short pound.

 

Hoping you are all well.

Love to all,

George

Dick-Cunyngham letter to wife dated 21 Mar 1915

Dick-Cunyngham letter to wife dated 21 Mar 1915

 

My darling one,

 

Rather busy – one last walk round our trenches tonight – we go further north soon – to place you will see marked Mont K & we live in a Chateau very comfortable but within shell area, although it has not been touched – yet – Home circumstances changing especially after we have just got our trenches so good – Doubt if we shall find better ones up K way. If I don’t write tomorrow or next day you will know we are changing quarters.  Have written to Godfrey now lot and hope it will find him – Am taking round a Gen & Colonel tonight.  We shall be out from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. I expect.  Moon is up now, so we shall see something.

 

All my love my darling one,

Your devoted Hubby

Jimmie

 

With envelope addressed to Mrs J. Dick Cunyngham, Heslington, Croft Road. Crowborough, England.  Signed Dick Cunyngham.  Passed by Censor No 1354 cachet.  Postmarked FIELD POST OFFICE 14 21 MR 15.

George Ryan’s letter home dated 18 Mar 1915

George Ryan’s letter home dated 18 Mar 1915

9th Middlesex

Barrackpore

Bengal.

India.

18 Mar 1915

 

Dear M & F,

 

I’ve received your letters of Feb 12 & 19. I received quite a batch of letters with your first one last Saturday.  One from Charlie Soper at Malta, one from the office, one from the landlady at Sittingbourne & one from Cousin William at Holt.  I’ve also received a few papers from Holt.  I don’t remember seeing “Cousin William” unless it was that he came over from Uncle Tom’s some time ago.  I suppose nobody else is likely to write from there; perhaps you had better let me know who’s who in case.

 

We’ve practically finished our firing now. We expect to go to Darjeeling some time next week, so I am going to Calcutta this afternoon if I can get a pass, as we might not have the chance again for a little time.

 

Well I suppose we are out here till October now, as there’s no signs of moving, in spite of the rumours.

 

The 2nd partner at the office has got a commission in the Navy & the Governor’s son has joined the Army so there’s only the Gov, & Mr Walker left.

 

I’m surprised at the cost of the W.D. League’s uniforms, they must be very swanky things. They only ought to cost half that amount, 20/- at the most, from any army contractor, in large quantities.

 

Hoping you are all well,

Love to all,

George

 

Dear Ma,

Thanks very much for the tales about my naughty sisters. Lets have some more.  I’m surprised at May, I thought she knew better.  She hasn’t got me to look after her.

G

 

Dick-Cunyngham letter to wife dated 15 March 1915 on black edged notepaper.

Dick-Cunyngham letter to wife dated 15 March 1915 on black edged notepaper.

 

March 15th.

My own darling one,

 

You do write such darling letters. I love the story that Freddie has got, bar settling down to work that night at St. Quentin and doing a bit of Staff work for F.W.  I didn’t know I had done anything more than anyone else – I shall be amused to hear your description of Seely, I wonder if you will remember that I got him to take Pancake Allan away in his motor-car from Bavai.  There has been some heavy fighting North of us – went on all last night, incessant firing & rifle fire heavier at 3 a.m. when I got up & telephoned down to the trenches.  But I’ve really had 2 good night’s rest lately – and rather less to do by day – we are going off on our tour in 40 minutes time.  Hope it will be quieter than last time when we had to take to ‘dug-outs’.

 

They are building us a Hutment Bde Hd Qrs later on, so we shan’t have these daily moves – today just as we had finished lunch a shell went over the house and landed beside the road about 100 yrds down – the vet officer who hates shells was just leaving the house at the time & came running back for the cellar – they put 9 in altogether & 3 failed to explode. One hit the church & knocked the S chancel to pieces, Geoff and I had a look at it just now.  The priest and some nuns were trying to save some coloured figures – it is sad to see churches knocked about & this one has some rather nice oak panelling & pictures.  I wonder they don’t remove everything.

 

How killing about Neil – what is he doing at Camberley – such a place to settle in for the poor boy unless he is with Godfrey’s relations. Must write to Godfrey some time – really disgraceful I’ve never written him a line.

 

I enclose a bill which please pay if you have enough & when I tell you cap has arrived and is satisfactory.

 

Never heard anything about Dickie & Eva going to Warminster – and a house – how exciting – shall I come home & help train the new Army! Daniell in Seaforth’s has gone.

 

My chilblains are now small blue & black bruises the size of a shilling and are very tender in the mornings – or whenever I put on or take off my boots. Find my old field boots the most comfortable by day but must try and wear the Norwegians for the mud tonight – my feet are warmer now so I may get into them easier.

 

Woke up deaf in left ear this morning so uncomfy, still deaf now – perhaps ride will shake it up.

 

There isn’t any news much – more activity all round coming with the spring, new moon tonight, one looks forward to moonlight nights as then we can walk round in comfort, it’s no fun on a pitch black night- shall be home for dinner about 10 p.m. tonight I expect, anyhow there ought not to be any more work & I have written my usual letter.

 

I am so glad you enjoyed your little jaunt in Town, you richly deserved it – will you now think about joining a Lady’s Club in Town, I feel you would have somewhere go to when you go up where you could be comfy – I never did like you rushing about, lunching at Stewart’s etc & having no rest. Think of it, darling will you – must go and change for trenches – old coat etc.

 

All my love my precious one & god keep you both safe & give you the strength to bear all your anxieties.

 

Ever your own loving Hubby

Jimmie

 

With black edged envelope addressed to Mrs Dick Cunyngham, Heslington, Croft Rd. Crowborough, England.  Passed by Censor No 1354.  Signed Dick Cunyngham.  Postmarked FIELD POST OFFICE 14 dated 16 MR 15