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To Mr Anthony Browning

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To Mr Anthony Browning 95 Chester Close Norfolk SE56 5KY United Kingdom 17th January 1916 Dear Papa How are you? How is mother doing? Hope she is ok Please give my regards to young Louisa. Hope she is studying well. My journey to France was very enjoyable. We first took a short train ride to Dover. Then we went by boat to Calais. From there on it was just a short walk for around 16 miles. During the journey I was excited and nervous. Surprisingly I made quite a lot of friends. We shared stories with each other and many more. The sandwiches mother made were delicious. They lasted for the whole journey, even though I shared it amongst everyone there. Most of the young lads that are with me haven't got a proper family. My good friend Edward is one of the minorities who have any of their family members alive. Edward's lost his father and mother to a bad case of murder at the age of two. ...read more.


He can also imitate a commander really well. You should see him, standing tall with his nose up and his bottom stuck out. Anyone would think that was the commander himself. We also sing a great deal of folk songs. We sometimes even make up our own. We have a great time under the stars. If we make too much nose the general comes and tell us off. He doesn't like us getting together. He says that we are not here to have fun but to fight the opposition. He says we loose concentrating when we are having fun. We never take any notice of him anyway. In a way what he is saying is right but lads like us need fun. You should really come here and see us. You'll be very jealous. We are having such a nice time that you would not like to leave. It's all fun and games in the evening but it isn't like that in the daytime. ...read more.


After the incident I really miss home. I wrote to Edward's sister yesterday. Informing her about Edward. I am really scared now. I always think that I am going to end up with the same fate as Edward. I pray everyday day now. I pray for a war free country. Please pray for me and all the other lads. I hope that the war will be over soon and I can rejoin you, mum and Louisa. I could not right letters all these weeks because I did not have any paper. They just gave us this paper as most of the lads were complaining. Hope I can write back soon. Your loving son John Emanuel Browning PS: This letter is not for mother's eyes. If she sees this, she will be utterly disappointed. Just tell her that you got a telegram saying that I was all right. Please father. I do not want mother to me worried about me. PPS: I'm afraid you cannot reply to me because there isn't a proper address. Don't worry, I'll write back very soon. ...read more.

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