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Date: October 2nd 1915
Alexander Mowat - (cousin)
Wilhelmina Mowat

Moore Barracks,

Dear Cousin, Alex, –

I have intended to write you ever since I arrived in England, but every thing was so new, and unsettled, that I have written very few letters, now that were getting settled there is more time for letters.

Moore Barracks Hospital is the Canadian base hospital, we can accommodate five hundred patients. Wallace Scott of Toronto is the O.C. of the hospital, Miss Russel of Hamilton our matron. Each hut has beds for forty patients; we had about seventy nurses or sisters as they are called in the army, while among the orderlys are many medical students. In fact you find here graduates of all kinds, as privates, doing all kinds of fatigue work, they have never done before in their lives. But all seem perfectly happy. The men as patients are ideal they appreciate every thing done for them, and they do come back so battered up, and many just nervous wrecks. It is terrible what some have come through. I believe you get more of the late war news than we do. The entire second division moved out from here over to France, last week. We know something big is on again, as the convoys of wounded are coming in. We expect one today but so far it has not arrived.

I am in the operating room, have not had any ward work since I have been here, much as I like it. I do not know if you know England or not, but our hospital is beautifuly situated, on the sea. We can sea the ships guarding the channel and mine sweeping going on. Some days we can hear the bombarding. There have been [may?] air raids, thus far, we have escaped, we are allowed to use only candles at night, and even then the windows are covered early.

England truly is a grand old place, and there is much old interesting things, places, cathedrals etc to be seen. I had two weeks in London when we arrived. Enjoyed Canterbury and Dover too, but some how one can not really enjoy these things, with the war on.

I hope to visit Scotland possibly after the war and look up some of our relations. I do not know of any in particular, except mother’s brother, but I will hunt up the others. Mother did not object to my coming, I offered my services shortly after the war broke out, but did not get an appointment until last Feb. We are well looked after in the C.A.M.C. and are more fortunate than the sisters who have been sent to the Dardanelles, our matron and one of our sisters who went from here died, others have returned and are in hospital in London, while many of the medical men have returned on sick leave too. We expect to be moved any time – as abiding places are of short duration in the army. There is much I have to tell you – but for this time must let this go, as my time is limited just now. Kindly remember me to Mrs Mowat, and will be glad to hear from Grant, expect he has been home for holidays. If you have time, I will be glad to hear from you, as every one looks for mail here.

Mina Mowat.
Nursing Sister

Moore Barracks Hospital


[Editor’s note: There is an error in the written letter’s page numbering – pages 4, 5, and 6 were mistakenly numbered as 5, 6, and 7.]

Original Scans

Original Scans