Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula



Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula


Number 31. Reports no new mail received. Mentions parcels that have arrived. Writes of reading about agriculture and plans for future and where and in what sort of house they might live. Encourages her to approach an estate agent. Mentions weather, health and medicine issues.



Temporal Coverage



Two page handwritten letter


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NUMBER 31. 29-11-42.

Darling Ursula. No further mail from you yet & how sadly I miss it! My only mail this month was the flood released by the lifting of the ban. Two further tobacco parcels (making 4 in all) have come 3 are certainly from A.S.Y. & 1 I think from you containing 1/2lb Cut Gild Bar & 200 Gold Flake - A grand present & much appreciated. An invalid food parcel is also here from Father I think. Please thank him for everything & say I’m truly grateful. Now as to our future. I haven’t started swotting Agric yet but have read 1 or 2 books about the country & suggest that you get a copy for yourself of “Glory Hill Farm” Clifton Reynolds. He does what I want to do & writes of the difficulties as well as the joys of farming - the book gave me a lot of encouragement. I think you might well start looking around for a house. Well in the country but within easy reach of a good train service to London. It would really be much better for you to choose it for you have to live in it more than I. 40 miles out wouldn’t be too far if trains are good enough (even further at a pinch). The best idea would be to get one with say 50 acres & sub let the land until we want it. Don’t buy the house, rent it. I would suggest taking say 5/10 acres with the house to play about with to gain experience eg. cows, pigs, hay, grain. As to rent, I’m rather ignorant but I should put £100 pa. for rent, rates & taxes as the absolute maximum. Requirements for house are 1 Electricity 2 indoor sanitation 3 Water laid on 4 Good view of countryside preferably not too flat. 5 Plenty of Room for expanding family (?) ; all these apart from a good state of repair. Out houses would be useful too. I would like you to get a house & move into it as soon as possible but I imagine you wouldn’t be willing to do that on account of Ba & Lido although I don’t think your parents would object. When choosing the house always bear in mind the possibility of expanding the acreage farmed so that a district of relatively small holdings would be best. I don’t suppose for a minute that you will succeed in doing anything in this line but it’s food for pleasant contemplation on my part. I think a reliable agent is your best method of setting about it & you would certainly lose nothing by approaching one & studying any offers he might submit. You’d certainly gain experience anyway. I shall eagerly look forward to your reply to this. The Argotone arrived very conveniently for the 1st bout of really cold weather aggravated my tastelessness which has definitely receded since I first took a dose. I’m quite fit nowdays [sic] but have had no further chance of violent exercise. Violin study continues but German has slackened owing to lack time. I intend giving the fiddle precedence over all claims on my time for I’ll never have another chance like this. Longing for you always - fondest love, John.

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[underlined] Kriegsgefangenenpost [/underlined]

[post mark]




Straße: HENDON



Landesteil (Provinz usw.)

P.C. 90



Vor- und Zuname: Sgt JRM VALENTINE

Gefangenennummer: 450

Lager-Bezeichnung: M.-Stammlager Luft 3

Deutschland (Germany)



John Ross Mckenzie Valentine, “Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed September 21, 2023, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/19233.

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