Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula



Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula


Number 177-34. Reports arrival of many letters and joy of photographs. Catches up with family/friend news. He talks about their finances and of her purchase of extra land and out buildings. He tells her how depressed he has been and how she was unduly optimistic about the duration of the war. He ends by saying that the last few weeks have been the worst of his captivity.



Temporal Coverage



Two page handwritten letter


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15thOctober 1944


Darling Ursula, Your letters from you – 14th & 21st May, 19th June & [underlined] 4th Sept [/underlined] !! Series now complete to end May. How I wish they would arrive as regularly as written. I was delighted to have them – each has been read four times already & the photos most carefully studied. How beautiful are Frances & her gracious mother - I love them both so much. The gent. whom Grunfeld says I met is my Father’s contact. Frances is left handed is she? What a pity she is not a boy for its quite an asset at some games! What service is Carol’s father in – the censor always obliterates all references, of course I don’t mind them using our bed. But I’m excessively jealous all the same. Your “feminine society” is not quite so undiluted as our masculine. Please tell your Aunt Car of my sorrow at hearing of Mrs Hoare’s death. I really am grateful for her kind gifts & hoped one day to be able to meet her & say so. If you are to be disappointed if I do not audit you’re a/cs. I shall do so gladly & thoroughly. My aim when I get home is to make you happy in any & every way possible. You certainly deserve a little attention from me after all these years of neglect. Bless you for all you’ve done & the positively heroic way in which you’ve acted single handed. You chide me about our apparent inconsistency of financial outlook but you mistake my point. I wish you, if poss, to live well within our income so that when I return & commence consuming a part of it you wont suffer hardship by finding less available each for yourself & I. At the same time I urge you to invest every cent (if poss) in building up our home – so don’t laugh at me please! I’m delighted (hugely) at the purchase of the extra land & out houses. Congratulations darling. Could I have a description & sketch of the complete garden now. Thanks to your earlier sketches & the photos I have a fair idea of the “property.” Your letter of 4th Sept was a great relief. I’d been worrying a lot about you & ‘F’ during the [indecipherable word] months. I note it was written from Devon. Have you been there long? What have you done about the house? I forgive your crack about further writing being a “waste of time” because I think you meant it. Had you intended it to be sarcastic I’d have been mortally hurt but I see that like so many others here you were unduly optimistic about the duration of the war. I wasn’t but that hasn’t prevented me from being very depressed these last weeks. They have been & still are the worst of my captivity. I cannot see the end yet & am still unable to while away much time with my fiddle. Fondest love John.

[page break]

144 34

[underlined] Kriegsgefangenenpost [/underlined]

[stamp with the words GEPRUFT 139]

Little Close Devon Rd.

An M[underlined] rs [/underlined] U. M. VALENTINE
[deleted] FELMERSHAM [/deleted]
Salcombe Devon

Empfangsort: [deleted] BOTTRELL LANE [/deleted]
Strasse: [deleted] CHALFONT ST GILES [/deleted]
Kreis: [/deleted] BUCKS [/deleted]
[underlined] Gebuhrenfreil [/underlined]
Landesteil (Provinz usw.)

[stamp containing crown PASSED P.W. 5894]

Vor- und Zuname: W/O John VALENTINE
Gefangenennummer: 450
Lager-Bezeichnung: M.-Stammlager [deleted] 357 [/deleted] LUFT III
[underlined] Deutschland (Allemagne) [/underlined]



John Ross Mckenzie Valentine, “Letter from John Valentine to his wife Ursula,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed April 12, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/19486.

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