Letters from the Front

Private John Cushnie

Explosion at Longmoor, 4 from the 153rd killed

Private Collection

Saturday, August 18, 1917

Transcribed by: Anne Hales

Bramshott Camp Hants Eng

August 18, 1917

Dear Folks at Home:-

     Received your box last Monday and also mother’s letter written a little later.

     We are back from the ranges and just in time too as there was a terrible explosion the very night we left and four from the old 153rd were killed.  Chester McEwan is the only Mt. Forest casualty and all the others are safe and sound.  The company was out watching what was supposed to be a night attack and some of them through an officer’s carelessness wandered right over where a mine was set and before they could get back the mine exploded with the above tragic results.  Marwood our YMCA man in St. Thomas was also killed with his chum Osborne.  They were great friends of George Henry and Rachor and very popular with the rest of the boys and will be greatly missed in the battalion.

     Well we are going back to signalling at last.  We are all transferred to No 2 Company and we go to the school tomorrow.  We are nearly all together again in one hut which is more like home to us.  We will be attached to the Signal School until we are sent to France which will likely be quite a time yet.

     J. Campbell and Denis Mc Namara along with some others of the old 153rd Band have transferred to the 160th (Bruce) band and are now at Witley Camp.  The will go to France with the 5th Division which is still in England.  I haven’t seen the Findlay boys or Jack Renwick for quite a time but will try to make a trip up to Whitley soon and see them before they go to France.  Bob Young is also up at Witley with the 208th Battalion.

     This morning while walking down the road I saw an aeroplane land quite close so I went over and had a close view of it.  It is the first chance I have of seeing one at close quarters, although I have seen dozens passing over camp. It was certainly a neat structure with 2 cubby holes for the pilot and his observer where they sit with only their heads outside.  Upon rising into the air again they performed some fancy stunts for our benefit which looked very thrilling and beautiful.

     Well I must close now hoping you are all well as I am.



P.S. I sent you a book of views of Bramshott and district which will give you some idea of how beautiful this country is .  J.C.

This is part of the John Cushnie Collection. This is a collection of approximatly 98 letters from 1916 to 1918, and a diary with 220 entries from 1918. These letters and diary entries, were very gratiously provided by Anne Hales.