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November 25th 1914 - Letter from Mela Brown Constable to her fiancé, Cyril E Sladden Esq

25th November 1914
Correspondence From
Mela Brown Constable, The Nurses' Home, The General Hospital, Birmingham
Correspondence To
Cyril E Sladden Esq, The Officers' Mess, Bhurtpore Barracks, Tidworth, near Andover
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter

The Nurses’ Home
The General Hospital

Nov 25th 1914

My dear Sweetheart,

Thank you so much for your dear little letter and enclosure – it is very good of you to make me a present of it but I hardly think it quite fair to accept it as such, but as you say it will make you happier if I do, I will do so because I would like you to feel that I take you at your word. I had a curious piece of good fortune this afternoon and am £1 richer in consequence. When I left Badsey I could not understand why I was so much out in my accounts and this afternoon Ethel brought me a sovereign which she says she is sure is mine as it was slipped amongst my things which I left behind at home. I cannot think how I could have been so frightfully careless. We had a good laugh at my expense over it and May and Ethel seemed to think you’d be greatly horrified at the way your future wife threw her money about!

I missed the money but did not like to say anything about it as I had not any idea as to how I came to lose it.

The girls came loaded with things for me. Mustoe sent me some chrysanthemums out of his greenhouse, and Brailsford had carefully preserved the two last roses for me, a pink copper colour with an exquisite scent. I was very touched at their thoughtfulness and it made me so happy to think they liked me well enough to think of sending what the Belgians would call a “souvenir”. There was also a delicious cake made specially for me last night - and the little Mother ‘treated’ us our tea.

Ethel and May gave me my Xmas present today; I casually remarking I had’nt a little table in my room, not meaning it as a hint, and they bought me a dear little folding table on the spot. I am so thankful to have it and you can try and imagine me writing to you in my little green bedroom with Mustoe’s and Brailsford’s flowers beside me. I am not making very good progress with this letter as various nurses keep popping in to see me. That’s the worst of being so “beastly popular”!

I will give you more news in my next letter as it is getting late now.

My sudden “embarass de richesse” has enabled me to invest in some comfortable stockings, my others being practically all hole and no stocking! I feel that now this sovereign has turned up I ought to return you the 10/- but I do not want to hurt your feelings so am not enclosing it in this letter. Instead some of it will help me to send you a little present in about a week’s time which I have been wishing to send you for some time. It won’t really be a present as you will be paying for it but I know you will like to have it – it is nothing much but I won’t tell you what it is now.

Your dear words at the end of your letter made me feel I would love to be with you. I, too, feel the need we have of each other more and more as time goes on. Outwardly I am cheerful but underneath there is always a gnawing pain at my heart. I have felt ever since last Sunday that you were thinking about me more than usual – you seemed so very close to me in thought.

Goodnight my own dear Boy – it was so jolly seeing May and Ethel, but they reminded me so much of you, especially May, who has mannerisms similar to you, and when I looked at her sometimes she brought you vividly before me.

Dear Love – God bless you – you are very good to me – I wish I were more worthy. All my heart’s love is yours.

Ever your own

Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 2 sheets of notepaper
Location of Document
Imperial War Museum
Record Office Reference