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May 10th 1917 - Letter from Arthur Sladden to his father, Julius Sladden

10th May 1917
Correspondence From
Arthur Sladden
Correspondence To
Julius Sladden, Seward House, Badsey
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter



My dear Father


I had your last letter a couple of days ago and was glad to get the home news, and also to hear that you are better again. I hope by now you will be feeling more vigorous. How about a little change for a week or so, that might be a good thing for you.


We are all enjoying the warm weather here and one can watch the herbage growing from hour to hour almost. The apple blossom round here is glorious – of course Normandy is a great apple country and so many of the trees have deep pink blossom. This year it is coming out with the leaves and the effect is splendid.


I was so glad to have the account of the flowers on Mother's grave last month, I'm sure it is a source of happiness to you all to be able to tend her grave so constantly and keep it bright with flowers.


I keep busy but am not quite as pressed with routine work while I have additional help. The work in bacteriology out here during the war has been very extensive everywhere and many new lights are being shed on the subject, complicating in some ways. I have much material to write up on the subject of dysentery if only I can get opportunity to analyse results and put them into shape.


Mary writes cheerfully from Port Talbot I think they may stay on there for a while, for if Hubert is called up the two wives will join forces in our absence, and there is some prospect of his being called up. The War Office seem to have acted rather hastily a few weeks back, and were really forced to withdraw their wholesale calling up of doctors. I think rightly, though doubtless there are many individual men who might well be “roped in”.


I agree with you that it is more probably we'll have to wait till 1918 for the successful ending of the war – I fear we're not very likely to see Russia on the offensive this year, and for the next twelve months it is more than ever necessary for us to rely only on our own strong right arm inspired by the world-recognised justice of our cause. It is a great pleasure to read of Balfour's successful visit to the States; there, Government seems to be ahead of the populace – with us so often the case is reversed. However when one considers how every Englishman regards it as a pleasure and duty to grouse at his government I suppose the present situation is very good, all things considered. The Times still informs us that State Purchase is on the tapes – I hope it comes off as I'm sure it is an essential feature for effective control of interference - and also it would be a safeguard against any bigoted legislation against the reasoned wish of the country. Whether it's a good commercial proposition per se I don't know.


I heard from Norton recently in reply to a letter of congratulation. He says that much American aid in transport service (with the French I presume), will quickly be established - I expect he'll get a commission as colonel – I see that recently he has received the Legion d'Honneur.


Our little patch of vegetables is coming on pretty well, but the soil here is rather sandy and I don't expect to see very rich crops. I suppose the Evesham district should have a good season ahead, if they can arrange facilities all right for transporting their stuff.


With my love to all at home.


Your affectionate son


Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 3 sheets of notepaper
Location of Document
Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service
Record Office Reference