April 22nd 1915
Dear Wife & Children
Just a few lines hoping your are all quite well as it leaves me at present we are having very nice weather & we are in a very dangerious place now the worst in the whole firing line they are being killed & wounded all around it is awful to see the poor soldiers passing us on the road with the bandages in all sorts of places but mostly in the head we are out of France we are at a place called Haumertinghan in Belgium the last place we was at in France was Winnezeele near Hunvoorde & it was the best place we had been to we had six days rest their & now we have just arrived hear & it is hot no one would ever scribe it without they see the ruines of the towns & villiages the place we are at now the people have orders to be cleared out in 24 hours as their will be something doing at any minute the poor things going along the road crying with 4,5,6 , children & all with a bundles that was all they could take from their homes as the Germans had all ready started firing on the town it was awful little baby in their arms & lots like that as they say the Germans was awful when the first came through last October with the women killing them if they did not do what they wanted very old people could only just walk along but our transport that would be going the same picked lots up & gave them a ride I till you it but it hit lots of us fellows pretty hard to think what could happen to your own while you were away fighting they are crowded up in barns sleeping any where some of them have not see or heard of their husband since the war began & do not know if they are alive prisoners & dead nor do not know where to find them I often thing how thankful it is not our homes & towns the places we have seen but we are not allowed to tell or say I have manage to get this envelope & I have said quite alot that I perhaps they would not like but I have took a chance Dear Wife what I have seen of the Belgium people they are better to the soldiers than the French they do not put the price like they did in France I was in a nice little town called Poperinche while we where having our rest & that was in Belgium Dear Wife we hear all kinds of rummers hear but I must tell you this that those who gets through is going to be very lucky & I hope I shall be one of them but what is to be will but I do hope shall have the chance to see all my children once more with you since I have seen these poor Belgians with their familes it as made me think a lot of my three young ones the others two is not so bad as they are old enough to battle for themselves but I must tell them I what them to stand and look to the others until they are old enough to look for themselves I know you will do your best but you may not be long enough yourself upon the earth & then what about the young ones so I want them to understand me what I expect them to do but I hope we shall both see them grow off hands & be able to look themselves. I will now draw to a close with best love & wishes from your ever loving Husband & Father.
some wild flowers picked in Belgium