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Date: August 20th 1916
Mother & People

Aug 20/16
Dear Mother & People

Back again in Billets after our first baptism of fire. It seems that the most danger time is on the way up and out of the trenches not in them. We had several narrow escapes but had no casualties. One shell buried itself not far away but only threw some sand at us.

The Germans have spies all through the country. They seem to have knowledge of every thing going on as soon as we do and native belgians are being continually taken out & shot.

While up front the Hockers were very quiet. They only sent about one shell to our ten which to my mind seemed to indicate that they are saving up for an attack.

They used to send up captive observation balloons which did us a lot of damage but our aeroplanes have frightened them of that by flying over them and dropping incendiary bombs - zipp & they are gone. So they have quit that. They send very few aeroplanes which spot billets in rear of the line during the day by observing any congestion of troops. Then at night when all the men are in the billet they drop a whiz-bang right in the centre. One platoon officer disregarded the warning & inspected his platoon in front of his billets. That night an aeroplane gave range & three sheets dropped cleaning up the whole platoon. But their aeroplanes are few & far between while ours seem to be myriad.

We have practically no news of the conditions in other sections of the line and not much of our own.
Wes was up with us but came back alright & smiling.

I got a verbal message from Gordon G today but have only seen him once since his arrival in England & that time was at Bramshott & only for an hour one evening.

This letter has relieved my blue feelings this morning an awful lot and I'll be much more able to carry on now. It has taken my mind away from our trip back last night.

Pray for my soul. That is all I have worthwhile. Write my friends & Aunt Lila & Wilford B. that I have no time to write them.

God keep you all and Give love to you all


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