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Date: January 5th 1917
Margaret Russell


A gunner with Lieut. Horne's draft from the Cobourg Heavy Battery writes Miss Margaret Russell as follows from the STOWLANGTOFT CAMP:

Received your letter to-night with three others, I guess I am getting my share, for there is hardly a mail comes in that there is not one for me. Of course, we all look forward to a letter, for really I would rather get a letter than a good meal and that speaks for quite a bit. Since I arrived here in this camp I have been continually answering letters. This may not be a very long letter, but I hope that it shows that I have not forgotten the good times we used to have while boarding at your place. Sometime we may have the pleasure of being there again.

At first I did not like it at all but now I am more accustomed to the place, I like it much better. Our parade grounds are far ahead of Witlty ofcourse was so handy to London, but this is an out-of-the-way place, but still we have a good time. Our hut is much warmer and we get a much better supply of coal.

We have now been here about two weeks, but have learned quite a bit in that time. Our drill was all changed and instead of artillery and cavalry, we now get infantry rifle and gun drill. It's very hard for us for quite often we get the two confused. However we will learn someday, I hope, and then they will have to look out for our smoke.
Lon and Russell have gone with the signalers, but jack and I are still with the guns, where we hope to remain. You should have seen our bunch pulling a Howitzer gun along the road for 200 yards. For two days we have been at a dugout, learning how to manage such things, which no doubt will come in use when we reach the front.

If you could see us sometime, well you would think that we did not realize what we were over here for. We certainly do have fun along with the few hardships, but when all is considered I would say that we are comfortable situated. If no worse comes, well, well, I will be satisfied.

We often enjoy a concert here in the Y.M.C.A. and it takes the monotonous feeling away from the dull camp life. I often think of the night we spent singing together. Camp is made up of Australians, South Africans, Imperial troops and the Canadians. Most of the last draft have gone to the front, but still there are a few left to tell the tale. Wishing all a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year,
Your friend,