Cecil Gray Frost (1897-1947) WW1 Correspondence  
6th Brigade Canadian Machine Gun Company
Cecil Gray Frost (1897-1947)
WW1 Correspondence 1917-1919

Previous Letter

Postmarked Field Post Office D.C.2  27th July 1918

[LMF Notes]  This was written no doubt unknowingly during the move of the Canadian Corps to Amiens.  C.G.F. had been promoted to Captain.
Verva Jackson Ė a girlfriend.
Tizzie Wizzies refers to a class our mother taught of girls and her sons referred to them irreverently as above.
Miniature airplane Ė This was made by one of C.G.F.ís battery near Neuville Vitasse.  The miniature is still in existence and in possession of the family.
Reference to the Allies offensive action refers to the first beginnings of the 100 days, the last days of the war.  The French had been driven across the Marne to the Vesle River and there the counter attack took place very successfully.  This action is sometimes referred to as the 2nd Battle of the Marne or at least its beginnings.  The action at Chateau Thierry, an American battle was part of this engagement.
Mrs. Deans the mother of Harold Deans.  He was shot down at Passchendaele and is among the missing whose names are carved on the Menin Gate at Ypres.
France  26/7/18
Dear Mater et Pater -

Received a letter from Dad and two from Mater today.  Also one from Gren which made me almost faint with surprise.

Am so glad that trade is so good.  Am sure that the new optical dept. will be a great success.  It would be lots of fun to see what signs old Jebb will put in his window.
Do you remember the fuss he made when Graham was at ďDiamond Hall.Ē

By the way I am receiving ďbeaucoupĒ dollar bills from you people now.  Quite a fine idea, everybody tells me.

Do you know that Iím very very ashamed of myself for letter writing for the past few weeks.  Do you know everybody is in the same position.  That is, all are confessing there inability to write letters home or elsewhere for that matter.

However Iím going to make amends and become a frequent letter writer.  Now I assure you that this promise is not like one of poor Dadís resolves to get to the store by eight oíclock or to post the books.  Now thatís surely a slam at the head of the family eh!

So Verva Jackson told you that I was a captain.  I wonder who wrote her that letter.  Iíll have to ask her.  Iíd like to know who knows her in this crowd.

Well Iím not a Captain yet by any means yet.  I have been acting captain for over four months now however.  Whether Iíll get the rank or not yet remains to be seen.  Candidly speaking I donít think I will.  The reasons are simply these.  There are others senior to me, to whom promotions are coming before me.  However Iím getting quite high on the list now.  If I had the luck to be sent out here six months before I would be a captain today but then you see I wasnít, so to follow the argument there you are.  Might say that Iím still holding down my job however, and it is certainly a very good experience for me.

Do you know that I have been nine months in this country now.  That is quite a long stretch too.  As yet I have never missed a single trip in the line except when I was on leave nor have I been sick for a single day.  Thatís pretty lucky too you know.  I want to see a year in France at the least however.  People need to talk in terms of months of the time they spent in France.  Now they talk in terms of years.  Thus I want to have at least a year to my credit.

Had a letter from Leslie the other day.  Said that he had a suit of civies and was also going before a board.  Well I surely hope that he is marked ďCanadaĒ.  I have absolutely set my heart upon his getting home.  I know it would do you all good to see him again.  Two years is a long time to be away you know.  I guess Iíll be away a little longer than that all right.  However I certainly hope that August sees him home O.K.  It ought to you know if he has any luck at all.

Would like to see Les in civies again.  Am going to get a suit myself the next time I go on leave.

OH.  Iíll be glad to hear when I have paid Les all the money I owe him.  Five hundred dollars isnít bad you know.  Its all in a start.  I must be somewhere near it now.  Then I have the odd hundred over here.  And that helps some too.  Lord only knows when Iíll ever get leave again.  It is coming so slowly now that it just about might as well stop altogether.  However I may get it about Xmas, and thatís a pretty fair time to get it too.

Well how did the ďTizzie WizzieísĒ party come out.  I really would like to have been there.  How is that fat Wallace girl.  I forget what her name is now but I went to school with her anyway.  We were in about the same class I think.  She couldnít learn and I didnít try very hard I suppose.  Poor old Pick Lillie.  I see by the Packet he has sold his house.  Surely he hasnít moved from Orillia.  Iíll never forgive him.  I sent him an Xmas card which he didnít answer.

Am so glad that you have received my aireoplane.  That little souvenir was made not so very far from the front line and near to the spot where Leslie was wounded.  I think if it were polished a bit it would be O.K.  I was rather nervous about it as I sent it from the line in a box I received from home and also the cloth came off a parcel from Molly Downey I think.  But it was packed in official stationery you remember.  I took the paper out of my waste paper basket and sorted all important ďdopeĒ out of it.  Still it was hardly the right thing but what could I do.  OH well as long as it has really arrived why worry.

We are having kind of a windy and rainy period over here ourselves just now.  However one learns how to get wet and merely laugh and say Ė ďSend her down Davy, send her down.Ē
I suppose you will be or rather are delighted to see that the Alies still have a powerful kick left.  Certainly ďchannel Heinie upĒ down south this time.  Well he can take a whole lot of it too.

The Yanks are coming over here to make good our losses Ė not only that, but will increase our strength.  Whereas the Boche is losing men and lessening his reserves all the time.  Thatís what we want him to do.  The Yanks will be alright too.  Iíll never forget the first American officer I had up the line with me for instructional purposes.  He was an awfully nice fellow.  Didnít boast a bit.  Iíll never forget as I was taking him overland one night how curious he was.  He couldnít tell our Machine Guns from the Boche.  OH well theyíll soon learn and I often think that its better not to know anyway.  This war hasnít affected my nerves yet Ė not a bit but I know that Iíll never feel as safe as I did at Paschendaele again.  Simply because I know more.  However lets get off the subject of war.  I think it has changed us all a little.  We can say with the French Ė ďCíest la guerre.Ē

At present we are enjoying life at the war.  I have a good billet.  Nice bed.  Soft & springy.  Big French windows.  Madame always gave me strawberries and cream.  Now it is cherries.  Both are beautiful however.

Am so sorry to hear that M. Deans has given up hope about Harold.  Poor Hal.  I often think of the many castles in Spain which we constructed.  Lots and lots of them.  He was a good fellow sure enough.

Well dear people Iíll have to say goodnight.  I picked up a remark in Motherís letter to the effect that Dad had new teeth.  Is that so.  Now thatís fine.  Iíll have to have a picture of Dad showing a sunny smile.  Then Iíll be able to judge the improvements on their merits.
Well good bye Ė Have received the socks Ė Annie McIntyres syrup which by the way had run out of a hole in the bottom of the can.  Donít tell him that however.  Say I appreciated it very much.  So I do.  Luckily the socks werenít touched.

Thanks for the birthday wishes.

XXX Cecil

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