Letters from the Front

Private John Cushnie

First Letter from France

Private Collection

Wednesday, March 13, 1918

Transcribed by: Anne Hales

Somewhere in France


Dear Folks at Home:-

     Well this is my first letter from “La Belle France” where we have been now for nearly 2 days.

     To begin with you will understand that I cannot mention the names of any places we came through after leaving Bramshott or this letter would probably be destroyed by the censor.

     We had beautiful weather all the way which helped to make the trip much more enjoyable. At the English Port where we embarked we were allowed up town for the afternoon and evening and managed to put in a pretty fair time. 

     The English Channel is noted for its roughness but the day we came across it was just like a duck pond and we enjoyed the trip very much as we were lucky enough to get a seat up on deck and didn’t have to stay down below like some of the other troops.

     Landing at the French Port we had a short march through the city.  It impressed me as being a very dirty place but then seaports are nearly always dirty.

     From there we had a ride in motor trucks to the base where we are stationed now.  It was uphill nearly all the way and we were thankful indeed that we didn’t have to march it with our heavy packs.

     The country we passed through was quite hilly and there were many woods.  The soil is very sandy and some of the hills are chalk.

     The air over here is much more dry than in England – more like Canadian summer.  In fact summer has come here already and everywhere the peasants are working in their fields.

     We are all quite well and suffering no ill- effects from our trip.

     This is the “base” we are at now.  We don’t know how long they will keep us here but it will probably be some time yet before we move up the line.

     I must close now.  Will write soon again



P.S. Please send me a can of Boracic Powder in your next box.  It keeps the feet in good condition during hot marching.  JC

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.