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In war there is but one favorable moment; the great art is to seize it!

-- Napoleon Bonaparte

World War ISeptember 13, 1916 Dear Wife:- Just a line in answer to your most welcome letter. I should have liked to have written before but I have not had the time. We have been on the go night and day, and you can't write letters under a hell a of fire like we have had this last two weeks,but we are resting for a couple of days now so I am writing to you the first chance that I have had. Well dear how are you going on, alright I hope. And how are the little ones? I can't say I am too well myself. I am getting stiffened up like an old man, and no wonder as it is very wet here now and we have to sleep in it night and day, so you can bet what it's like. So you have got a new sidewalk. Well I wish I was walking on it now for this is some place. I got a parcel from you yesterday, but it was broken up pretty badly so if I were you I would not send very much cake. I have not told you before but all the cakes you have sent have been smashed up so I would not send much of it if I were you. I have not received the plums yet that you sent but I hope to. Are you getting any letters from my people? I have had letters from them and they all say they have written to you. It's funny you don't get them. Well old mate, I have some very bad news for poor Mrs. Richardson. Poor Charlie was killed on the 9th of Sept. I was by his side when he was killed and I don't know yet how I escaped the same fate, but one thing, he didn't suffer as he was killed instantly. A big shell called a nine point, weighing over one hundred pounds hit him so you can see he didn't stand any chance. But it's a great blow for me, for we were always together ever since he came out here, and I can tell you I miss him very much. There are no St. Mary's men in my Platoon now, and I am all on my own again. But never mind, don't you worry over me. I am alright up till now, but if anything happens to me, keep your little house together for I don't think you would like England. It's not much of a place now, but this place, is a thousand times worse. There is some talk out her of the war not lasting any longer than Xmas. Let's hope it is true, for I think everybody has had enough of it. The Germans are beaten and they know it, but we have got to get to Germany before they will give in, and that means some rough fighting. I suppose you know where I am now, I saw in the Canadian papers where we are an we are in the thick of it too. There isn't a day passes without us taking prisoners and trenches. The French do the same so I don't think it will last much longer, but at any rate keep on living and believing. I don't think I can say anymore now so will conclude this short letter. Wishing you and the children the very best of health. I remain, Your Loving Husband, FRANK France September 13, 1916


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This Day in History
1408: The revolt of Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland, against King Henry IV, ends with his defeat and death at Bramham Moor.

1788: France declares bankruptcy due to expenditures aiding the American Revolution.

1814: The USS Constitution captures the British brig Catherine.

1903: The Austria-Hungary government decrees a mandatory two year military service.

1915: British and French warships begin their attacks on the Turkish forts at the mouth of the Dardenelles, in an abortive expedition to force the straits of Gallipoli.

1917: American troops are recalled from the Mexican border.

1942: Darwin, on the northern coast of Australia, is bombed by the Japanese.

1942: President Franklin Roosevelt signed executive order 9066 giving the military the authority to relocate and intern 112,000 West Coast Japanese-Americans, two-thirds of whom were American citizens.

1944: The U.S. Eighth Air Force and Royal Air Force begin "Big Week," a series of heavy bomber attacks against German aircraft production facilities.

1945: Operation Detachment, the U.S. Marines' invasion of Iwo Jima, is launched.