Postcard from the Trenches

Oh boy, this is going to be hard to convey how emotional I feel right now…

One of my previous posts concerned the five IRVING brothers – none of whom survived the Great War.

Well, I was just going through the box of family history research that my Dad gave me recently. He had traced the direct line of RETTIE ancestors back to 1678 (before the internet, with many hours trawling through microfiche I bet). The box is full of his hand-drawn charts, magazine articles, newspaper clippings, hand-written notes, etc. There was a separate folder labelled ‘IRVING’ which I hadn’t looked into before now.

And inside I found something more precious than any medal…

Postcard from Hugh IRVING to his daughter Charlotte (front)

Postcard from Hugh IRVING to his daughter Charlotte (front)

Postcard from Hugh IRVING to his daughter Charlotte (back)

Postcard from Hugh IRVING to his daughter Charlotte (back)

Dear Lottie.
Can you find me out in this Photo. This is the place w[h]ere we were digging trenches. 
I am away at the back with my hat the wrong way.
Are you still getting on well at school and behaving yourself.
Are you still going [for] Grannies messages.
From Dada with love and kisses. x x x x x

Lottie is Charlotte, my Nana (my paternal Grandmother) and this postcard is written by her Dad, Private Hugh IRVING of the Scots Guards, killed 19th June 1917, Flanders.

I also found a picture titled ‘Sgt E.H. Trinder’s Squad, Scots Guards, November 1915′. I presume my Great-Grandfather is somewhere – this time with his hat the right way round!

Sgt Trinder's Squad, Scots Guards, Nov 1915

Sgt Trinder’s Squad, Scots Guards, Nov 1915


I shall treasure these items forever and endeavour to find out more about Corsham trenches, the photographer(?) Spackman and Sgt Trinder.

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4 comments

  1. Pingback: Like Father Like Son « One Step Forward, Two Steps Back
  2. Pingback: Naval Gazing | One Step Forward, Two Steps Back
  3. Julian Carosi

    Hi – the Batters is an area where I used to play as a child in Corsham. It still exists – see my Facebook photos via the link below. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.877944798901482.1073741851.100000579095891&type=3
    Corsham are also holding a commemoration of the trench building at the Batters in Corsham, Wiltshire on Sunday 5 Oct 14 – see here for more details. http://corshamcommemorates.weebly.com/trenches-at-the-batters.html
    Regards, Julian Carosi

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