Thursday, August 07, 2014

Letters to the Front

I was going through some of my ephemera and letters, looking for some materials to use in a mail art call related to World War I, when I came across two letters I had picked up for $3 in a Victoria collectibles shop. They are quite lovely and heart breaking, written from a boy, Ron, to his father. Since we are "celebrating" (honouring?) the centenary of World War I, I thought I'd post the images and text of these letters (a letter and a Valentine).




Transcript:

[image of 2 cent stamp]

Dear Dad,
Went back to school today and had manual in the after-noon. We had to go to Steveseton [I think Steverston, a community near Vancouver] because they moved the manual. We went up and came back in the school buses. We had a swell time. Soon as I got back to the school after manual the principal collared me and said I want you as soon as you get your hat and coat on so I got them on and went with here [her?] to the nurse's room. The nurse said I was all right. Get [got?] faged [*fagged] out. So Miss Principal said don't worry about your homework and don't work hard in school so I am going to have a swell time.

Glad you're coming HOME, Home Sweet Home.

Yours till the Cream puffs,
Ron

[picture] One of the nurse

Turn Over

* I looked up fagged in my lovely old Webster's Dictionary and it says: to work strenuously; to tire by exertion; to exhaust.

I'm not sure what manual would be. The above dictionary referred to "The specified manner of training with a weapon." Any other thoughts? 



This side is the most heart-breaking (and sweetest, really). "Before," dad is in a wheelchair. And now? He is "all bright and shiny as a new dime." Then, an illustration of the "new dad ("You"), "By Me." 

2 comments:

PamelaArtsinSF said...

Very charming! I don't know what a "manual" would be either. What a great find -- a small, personal part of history.

Adrienne Mason said...

Yes, quite sweet wasn't it? I looked a bit into manual and I think it might have been a sort of military training (perhaps like cadets?). Thanks for reading and commenting, Pamela. It's drippy here, so I'm having a good day going through the mail that arrived over my holiday (THAT was fun!), scanning, blogging, creating… Looking forward to a nice day. Hope you're having a good Labour Day.