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June 11th 1917 - Letter from Bernard Sladden to his uncle, Julius Sladden

11th June 1917
Correspondence From
Bernard Sladden, No 1 SA General Hospital
Correspondence To
Julius Sladden, Seward House, Badsey
Relationship to Letter Addressee
Text of Letter

No 1 SA General Hospital


Monday 11th June/17


Dear Uncle Julius


I came down from the lines on Friday morning with a dose of shell gas and remained 24 hours at a casualty clearing station where I was given the necessary treatment to counteract the effects of the gas. I believe mine was considered a fairly bad case and there was one period between the time that the remedy was administered and the moment when I found myself almost smothered in hot water bottles and breathing through the oxygen respirator, that I have no recollection of at all. From the CC Station I came on down here by Red Cross train and was admitted here yesterday morning to the No 18 Ward, No 1 South African General Hospital, Abbeville. I feel very little effect from the gas on the lungs now and although the action of the heart seems to be highly affected, the doctor says that time and a rest will remedy that.


Fritz was very liberal with his gas shells on our section and it was very hard to distinguish between the tear gas shell and those that cause trouble internally.


At the CC Station I gave a padre your address and asked him to send you a message. Probably my head was not quite as clear at the time as it might have been and my message may not have been clear to him but what I asked him to do was to ask you to cable home to say that I was slightly gassed and that treatment had been successful. Frank will be told by our military authorities that I have been admitted etc etc "gas poisoning" and to reassure them at home. The telegraph people will not accept cables as transmission from the soldiers and this seemed the best means of sending word.


I am comfortable and well looked after here.


I may not be able to write to Aunt Lottie at once and I would like someone to tell her what has occurred and I will send her a letter as soon as possible. I will have more to tell you later.


From your affectionate nephew

Bernard Sladden


PS - In case I am moved from here shortly, please keep my NZ letters till I send you a reliable address.

Letter Images
Type of Correspondence
Envelope containing 1 double sheet of notepaper
Location of Document
Worcestershire Archive and Archaeology Service
Record Office Reference