Local Soldier in War (1st Battalion)

Local Soldier in War (1st Battalion)

Postby kerchi » Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:18 pm

Local Soldier in War - Letter from a Private at Estcourt

Mrs. J. GLOVER of Collingwood Street, Carlisle, has received a letter from her son who is a private in the 1st Battalion Border Regiment.  It is dated Estcourt, 7th November.  He says that when the regiment was going out he saw some people from Whitehaven, and there had been "lots of Cumberland people"  before they moved out of the town with the other white people.  They had all to leave their cattle and furniture behind.  The letter proceeds: "You can go out any time and catch a hen or two and cook it for tea.  We get plenty of fresh meat here.  I was on a firing party last Sunday for an officer of the Natal Mounted Police, who got shot through the heart.  Everything you buy at this place costs a shilling.  They hardly know what copper is.  You would laugh if you saw the native men and women running about with a little bit of rag round them.  We are not allowed to take our boots off for fear of having to turn out any minute.  I was talking to a chap from Workington yesterday.  He is in the Dublin Fusiliers.  They are camping next to us.  Their regiment have lost a lot of men.  All the Boers they empty their pockets.  Some of the chaps have got gold watches and as much money as they can carry."  The writer concludes by expressing the hope that he will soon be home "with plenty of medals and money." It may be mentioned that in the letter the writer says, "We can't get ink or stamps here, so I send this without stamp.  I don't think you will have to pay for it at that end, as it was given out letters went free."  Nevertheless the letter bears a Natal penny postage stamp, as if some new arrangement had been made as to postage instead of leaving the addresses to pay at this end.

Carlisle Journal, 8th December 1899

Source: Cumberland and Westmorland Newspaper Transcriptions
In memory of John Bardgett (15309 L/Cpl.), 11th Border Regiment who died 1st July 1916.

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Re: Local Soldier in War (1st Battalion)

Postby CockneyTone » Thu Jan 01, 2009 1:27 pm

Chris,interesting letter, I love to pick up these snippets of the Borders in the Boer War thanks for sharing it with us, and keep up the good work! :)Regards,
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