Letter Home from Camp Hughes

Camp Hughes
July 21st 1916

Dear Mother:–

I received your most welcome letter yesterday and can’t help but say that I was surprised to here that it had been so long between my letters, but you must have got one about the time you wrote because I sent you the check by registered mail.

You want to keep on driving to town even it does tire you because it is a good change it must rest you even if you don’t feel it does I am glad I bot Mutt and Jeff so you have a trusty horse to drive around.

This a.m. at 7 oclock 20 of use fell in marched over to the target house about a half mile just back of the rifle Ranges. four of use got a job tidying up the different departments they are separate tents and shacks Bob Mc and I we inside target house all day we had to sweep the floor, sort about two hundred lbs of empty shells to see there was no loaded among them then we carried three rifle boxes about 100 feet to the Armory tent moved about 200 targets made of 4 x 4 plaster board and lath carried in about three boards 12 x 12 had dinner a sleep swept out and at 3.45 P.M. fell in marched back by 3.55 and were dismissed. We had to keep out of sight so we beat it down into the bush for ground cedar for our bunks got back before 5 had supper a good wash read a little and come over to the recreation tent it is now 6.50

I had my first digging of trenches the other day 34 of use dug a trench about 17 rods long this shape                   4 feet wide at the top 3 feet at bottom and five feet deep we fell in an 8 a.m. marched a mile and lay down till about 9.30 then we started to dig and had it done long before four P.M. the digging is great we get from 12 to 2 P.M. noon, and only work at trenching till 4.30 we get from 10 to 12.20 a.m. recess and from 3 to 3.20 P.M. every day so we have it easy even it is hot most of the days the big hats are great.

We have been warned for overseas but still I won’t give up till I see use loaded that we won’t get home for harvest. I guess it is because I want to come.

When we hit here they fed the whole Batt at one table so we shoved and fooled around bad then we got four tables and shoved just the same but in a line. then they would not let use line up till after the bugle went, but we all made such a rush that they made use line up in front of our tents in platoons or 54 men is a platoon and each platoon gets its turn at the table first there is four in each Co’y. There is 37 officers to a Batt. out side of n.C.O.’s.

I am sure glad Ted got the race I would have liked to see the come in. Say Mother tell Ted that he never wants to take the notion to enlist if I could only trade the time I have spent in the 128th and let it have been him I know he would not. but this is all I can say about it because I can’t tell just how I feel and see it, but I think Ted will realize what I mean, I could not receive my discharge under any consideration but there an’t one of use from Hazenmore would enlist under the same conditions again, we may be able to explain after the war how we see things but I can’t now and I don’t think any of the others can either. The only thing I want to make clear is that if the war last for 20 years we have done our duty under any conditions

You should see my mustache it is getting quite a length and I keep it trimmed all the time I will get a picture of it some of these days most of the boys are down town to a boxing match tonight. I haven’t boxed for about two weeks.

I haven’t got a bit of cold ore cough or head ack these days at all but I had to take some medicine for about a week but I put it off about a month to long before I started to take any thinking all the lime that I would be better in a few days.

Mother I have to hot a temper and I can’t all ways keep quiet if I an’t getting used right. lots of men would take things that I can’t at times, and when I can’t I am ready to fight even I don’t fell sore at the endividual in the least it an’t the man I am fighting but it is my rights that I want, and if I get them I an’t sore and I don’t think that I would be sore if I fought I told Fred Barns what I thought of him last night and his little drink of booze once in a while. but we are good friends again today.

Fred Nelson is on C.B. for two days for cutting up in the physical drill.

We get our mail twice a day all the time. I never go down town for a bit of fun I can’t see any fun down there at all. I go down and go to T Eaton’s or Dingwall’s and come back that is all I wan’t of down town

There is an eagle of at the 212th I went over to get a picture last night but he would not get out of his cage so I will have to go over earlier in the day some time.

Bill Hopkins is back from the hospital he had tonsilites Bill Boyns is there still be he walks around he was up here yesterday.

Mother I used to think that I was clean shaven if I shaved every other day but I have to do it every day now regularly.

Well good night Mother dear as ever your loving son