Letter to Mother from East of Montreal Camp

13 August 1916
East of Montreal [Camp]
Pte LDCunningham D [Co] 128th [Batt.]  
#  782373 D. Co’y 128th Batt
C.E.F. Gen. P.O.

Dear Mother:

I never thought of this being Sun. A.M. till right now and it is 7.48 A.M. we are traveling along at about 50 per, and the boys are getting shined up right after breakfast. I put off writing this letter till I would get to Ottawa but we didn’t get to Ottawa so I had to do on the train after all

we crossed the big St Lawrence river that seems a mile wide to me but they say it is a mile and a half long the river was running fast and wide down here about 45 min run from Montreal the country is level and great all fenced in small fields and lots of cows to the right is posted some big bills that were fine to see. Montreal is a great city built on the side of a large hill and the hill is covered with trees so you can just see the houses sticking out among it. say Mother I wish we could have taken this train trip together it would be the greatest time we could ever have. I just past a bunch of sheep on a small creek one of the nicest sighs the grass is short and very green. we saw apple trees up in Ontario and there is some young orchards out here. there are some rail fences out here but mostly wire oh I can’t write and tell you anything about this trip but I will try and give you a good idea of what I saw when I get back.

we call this the Bull Moose Batt. and when we started around the first bend in Lake Superior we chaced a big moose out into the lake he went out till he could just touch bottom and then turned around and looked at the last of the train go by, you know a moose was supposed to be our mascot so I guess we will have good luck on the trip.

we have just stopped in some kind of town for water or some thing there is 16 cars to our train and say they are feeding use some thing great. I hope it is as good on the boat. Bananas are 3 for a nikel in Mont. But the C.P.R. meenies charge more I don’t know what our canteen charges he hasent come around this A.M. yet. we are off again. We have emigrant cars so we have the upper bunk and can put my thing up there in the day time and I sleep down on the lower bunk at night the seats pull out to gether

Bob me and Wallie H sleep up above at night there is only three of use in this seat a lot of the boys have hollered so much that they can’t hardly speak out loud at all but it hadent bothered me yet. This is the first trip on a train I ever enjoyed and it is great all around.

Bob had his head out the window yesterday and he said look at some thing I don’t remember what but I went to look quick and my window was down I broak the glass in a hundred pieces and never hurt my head or scratched me one bit. Say we sure laughed.

There is just our platoon in this car 45 men and there is a guard on each door all the time to keep every man in his own car. we get 2 hours on out of about every 30 hours The [Lat???] Superior was great to me when I could see the water go way out to meet the sky and great high hills on each side of the opening which was only a cupple of miles wide they say that the hills were big islands, we have seen some islands in the lakes that couldn’t have been over a 100 feet across and would have two small houses on just for a summer home near a city or some town. We are going again.

Mother I feel alto gether different since I was home this last time I don’t feel so lonesome as I did I can’t tell why but there was an awful lot of satisfaction in getting back to have a few days talk with you and the rest at home. I think that every thing will be all right again in a few mos and we will all appreciate the blessings of life more than we would have if the war had never been. I saw several of those little creeks I have heard you mention at home that run down thru the hills and are nothing but solid rock and pebble bottomed they sure are so nice and clear. we passed thru 7 tunnels on the north side of L.S. some of them from a car in length to long and black as ink the smoke came in the window. It is all great to ride along the lake bank and see the big breakers come in and jump about 10 feet into the air right below you about 50 feet. There is a strip of good breaking out here less than acres just thick and it is fenced in by it self. The forest all lined up like a town back on the ends of the farms and all the farm cut up by fences. The raspberries were thick along the tack they seemed to grow on the grade thick for miles and miles. Harvey Anderson is police he has to get off every time the train stops and walk along the side of the track, he pulled some bushes and let use eat the berries right off the bush.

I can’t understand how it is that there can be such an amount of waste land as there is out here with out a man on it it gets me all around I had no idea of what it was like.

You would think some times if there is an open stretch for aways that you were looking out at a set of stock yards instead of farm field fences and say if I had a pile of the best hay I ever saw in Sask as big as the first twenty five stacks I saw in Ontario and I wanted to give it to a preacher I would tell him that he could hall the pile home in two trips with and ordinary Sask democrat with out ever making the springs twitch Well Mother Sergeant England just came in and said shine up so I guess we will get a church parade about the next division or some thing is on, we all like to get out on parade and say we get to our places just like one man Men can do it if they want to but say they can be mean if the don’t want to do any thing. we are three soldiers short yet Andrews Leeper and Fred Nelson they came down to say good by to all there folks at home

good bye mother dear as ever your loving son Laurie