Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula



Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula


Number 16. Reports letters arrives and sends thanks for tobacco parcels. Request she send him violin studies and that his new instructor is taking him seriously but he has progressed little despite much practising. Requests she send him farming handbook and apologises for not mentioning daughter's birthday. Mentions weather, health and 'duff gen' provided by prisoner of war magazine. Writes of mental state of fellow prisoner who unlike him does not get letters/parcels from his wife.



Temporal Coverage



Two page handwritten letter


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NUMBER 16. 2 – 4 – 43
My Dearest Ursula: No mail from you but one form your Mother dated 21/1/43 & one from a Mr Brett of Whetstone – would you ask my Father to thank him. Also two tobacco & cig parcels arrived from the “Wardens” of Whetstone. They have been very generous to me – having sent a large quantity of tobacco & cigs in 3 parcels. One of them was damaged & 1/4 of the contents missing Could you send me the following music please. “KAYSERS Studies of the violin”, books 1 & 2. My new instructor seems to be taking me quite seriously, but I have really progressed very little so far. However I am is keen as ever & if I still feel the same when I get back to you I shall endeavour to carry on with it. I’d love to be able to play with you, eventually I’m sorry to say that I haven’t used much of the stuff you sent me before, I had managed to acquire a German tutor with English translation, before your parcel came & being on my own I stuck to it, waiting for advice as to the best books to choose. I am now at doing 3 hours practice daily sometimes I manage a little more & sometimes less, but rarely less than 2 hrs. Very seldom do I miss a day entirely. That takes a lot of time out of each day so that the time devoted to Dutch, Agriculture & Musical Theory is very slight. Incidentally I am reading an excellent farming book & would advise you to get a copy if poss “Farming Handbook” published 1942 by Jarrold & Sons, Norwich. I’m very sorry that I didn’t mention Frances birthday until so late. I often thought of it but forgot each time I wrote to you. I hope you were able to give her a good time & doubtless you gave her a special kiss from father. By the way, that is how I wish to be called & I’d like you to be known as Mother. The weather has been most unpleasant during the last few days after a glorious month of March. Now it is cold windy & wet – & my senses are playing funny tricks as a result. in letters received here, we get a lot of quotations from P.OW. Mag. & very rarely do we see one which accurately describes conditions here. Of course, the fellow only advertise the least realiable [sic] excepts but it is apparent that there is quite a lot of “Duff Gen” in the thing. Frank Pepper is particularly disgusted with it but he has a very jaundiced outlook on life now. The major course of this mental state, apart from being confined, is neglect by his wife. She rarely writes & never sends a parcel – personal or tobacco. How much luckier am I with your constant care & attention. No one could have done more for a POW that you have done for me. Thank you for it all my dearest, perhaps I’ll be lucky enough to repay you one day. Love to both John.
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75 – 16
[sticker] EXAMINER 3310 [/sticker]
[postmark] GEPRUFT 64 [/postmark]
[underlined] Kriegsgefangenenpost [/underlined]
Kreis: LONDON, N.W.4
Landesteil (Provinz usw.)
[underlined] nfrei! [/underlined]
[sticker] P.C.90 OPENED BY [/sticker]
Vor- und Zuname: Sgt JRm Valentine
Gefangenennummer: 450
Lager-Bezeichnung: M.-Stammlager Luft 3
[underlined] Deutschland (Germany) [/underlined]
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John Ross Mckenzie Valentine, “Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed December 5, 2023, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/19296.

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