Barrett, Harold (Harry) Roward: Service no. 739518

Digitized Service Record

Source: A Letter From Pte. Barrett

Blog Post re. Letters

The Grand River Sachem June 28 1916.

The Grand River Sachem September 19 1917 Letter From France by Pte. C. J. Shea 739766 referring to Pte. Barrett.

Letter from Pte. Barrett[i]

Somewhere in France, Sept. 2, 1917[ii]

Mrs. P. Young, Caldedonia, Ont.:

Dear Grandma – Your letter and paper at hand, containing Lafayette’s death[iii], which certainly made me feel blue when I first received word. It seems queer that mother[iv] and he should die in the same month. My birthday is on July 24. Mother died on the 10th and Lafe on the 27th. I am pleased to hear that everyone gave a hand to get him. You can give my sincere thanks to everyone in return for their willing hand upon recovering his body.[v] If any of you see Jim Stevens give him my best regards as an old friend.

I hope Lafe’s cigarettes arrived all right; also the other parcels, as they are appreciated now.

My address is B Co., 18th Battalion, Canadians, B.E.F., France. I am not in touch with the other boys, so cannot give them the paper. Of course you are aware that lice is no object here; also peaches and cream are scarce, but we live good. Well I guess I will close for this time, hoping all is well. Best regards to all.

I remain your loving grandson,

HARRY BARRETT

[i] Source: The Grand River Sachem. September 26, 1917. Page unknown.

[ii] At the date of the composition of the letter the 18th Battalion was at Villers Camp near the commune of Villers-au-Bois in France. The letter was written on a Sunday and the Battalion had a Communion Service at 7:45 a.m. and Divine Service at 10:00 a.m.

[iii] Lafayette Barrett was born March 1906. Private Barrett also had 2 sisters. The census tables do not record his mother. 1911 Census. Ontario, Haldimand, Caledonia. District 41. Page 3.

[iv] Private Barrett listed his next-of-kin on his Attestation Papers as his sister: Velma McCann residing at 106 Murray Street, Hamilton, Ontario. The 1911 Census does not list his mother.

[v] From these two sentences, it is likely that Lafayette Barrett drowned or met some other misfortune.

The Grand River Sachem September 26 1917. Letter From Pte. Barrett

September 2, 1917: Somewhere in France

Letter from Pte. Barrett[i]

Somewhere in France, Sept. 2, 1917[ii]

Mrs. P. Young, Caldedonia, Ont.:

Dear Grandma – Your letter and paper at hand, containing Lafayette’s death[iii], which certainly made me feel blue when I first received word. It seems queer that mother[iv] and he should die in the same month. My birthday is on July 24. Mother died on the 10th and Lafe on the 27th. I am pleased to hear that everyone gave a hand to get him. You can give my sincere thanks to everyone in return for their willing hand upon recovering his body.[v] If any of you see Jim Stevens give him my best regards as an old friend.

I hope Lafe’s cigarettes arrived all right; also the other parcels, as they are appreciated now.

My address is B Co., 18th Battalion, Canadians, B.E.F., France. I am not in touch with the other boys, so cannot give them the paper. Of course you are aware that lice is no object here; also peaches and cream are scarce, but we live good. Well I guess I will close for this time, hoping all is well. Best regards to all.

I remain your loving grandson,

HARRY BARRETT

[i] Source: The Grand River Sachem. September 26, 1917. Page unknown.

[ii] At the date of the composition of the letter the 18th Battalion was at Villers Camp near the commune of Villers-au-Bois in France. The letter was written on a Sunday and the Battalion had a Communion Service at 7:45 a.m. and Divine Service at 10:00 a.m.

[iii] Lafayette Barrett was born March 1906. Private Barrett also had 2 sisters. The census tables do not record his mother. 1911 Census. Ontario, Haldimand, Caledonia. District 41. Page 3.

[iv] Private Barrett listed his next-of-kin on his Attestation Papers as his sister: Velma McCann residing at 106 Murray Street, Hamilton, Ontario. The 1911 Census does not list his mother.

[v] From these two sentences, it is likely that Lafayette Barrett drowned or met some other misfortune.

Grand River Sachem January 23 1918 Letters from the front Letter from Capt. Wm. Lyon with mention of Pte. Barrett.

The Grand River Sachem July 10 1918 Letter From France by Pte. Barrett to Capt. Lyon.

June 30, 1918: To Captain Lyon[i], Chaplain of the 114th Battalion, Brock’s Rangers

Letters from Overseas

To Capt. Lyon.

France, June 30, 1918

Dear Sir – I was the recipient of your most welcome letter, and need not say was pleased to hear you are making good your trying experiences. Captain, you shall have to excuse this scribble, as I am taking advantage of army laws by doing this after the lights are out, and as I have just concluded a six-page letters, “otherwise a continued story” on paper like this you shall not be disappointed if I cut this rather short. No doubt you surmise where this mentioned letter went to, “not to press anyway.” I gave your compliment to the boys, also Jim Johnson[ii] your address so you shall no doubt hear from him shortly. Everything is the same as usual here and just as quiet again; therefore, we can rest peacefully again. I imagine everything is getting unpleasant up there again on account of the rain.

I just received news yesterday that my father is better again, but unfortunately my youngest sister[iii] has been very ill.

Well, captain, some one says lights out, so I guess I shall be forced to close for this time, wishing the best of luck and Godspeed home.

Yours sincerely,

PTE. H.R. BARRETT

[i] Captain William Percy Lyon was the Chaplain for the 114th Battalion and The Grand River Sachem has numerous letters from former soldiers of the 114th Battalion to Captain Lyon relating their experiences and feelings. It appears he kept a very robust correspondence with the members of the 114th and was highly regarded by the men of the Battalion.

[ii] Likely Pte. James Wellington Johnson (739556) killed in action with the 1st Battalion August 30, 1918.

[iii] Helen Barrett born 1902.

The Grand River Sachem October 9 1918 Letter From France by Pte. Barrett to Capt. Lyon.

August 11, 1918: To Captain Lyon[i], Chaplain of the 114th Battalion, Brock’s Rangers

Letters from Overseas

To Capt. Lyon.

France, August 11, 1918[ii]

Dear Sir – Just a line in answer to your most welcome letter of July 17, which has been mislayed, and I humbly apologize for my carelessness in causing such a delay.

I am now of age, as you know, but shall not return to my unit on account of being classed B 2[iii] on a recent medical board, and am now employed in an orderly room in this depot.

I received a letter from home the other day, and find my young sister has been move from the hospital, but will not be able to do anything for quite a long time.

I saw Jack Renwick; he just left here this morning for the unit; he is with the 58th. I haven’t seen any of the Brock’s lately, on George Brittingham[iv] [Brettingham], who was here some time ago, but do now know where he went to.

We have had our visitor[v] here quite frequently trying to get the troops wind up.

Perhaps I shall be making my tracks to England on leave the end of the month or the first of the next, where I can see life again.

When I said I’d not seen any of the boys, I had forgotten that Fred Harrison[vi] passed through the A.S.C. [Canadian Army Service Corp] Bakery, and I told him where you were, so, perhaps, you will be hearing from him.

Well captain, I guess this is all the news for this time. Hoping to hear from you again,

I remain, yours sincerely,

PTE. H.R. BARRETT

[i] Captain William Percy Lyon was the Chaplain for the 114th Battalion and The Grand River Sachem has numerous letters from former soldiers of the 114th Battalion to Captain Lyon relating their experiences and feelings. It appears he kept a very robust correspondence with the members of the 114th and was highly regarded by the men of the Battalion.

[ii] On June 31, 1918 Pte. Barrett was taken on strength with the Canadian Labour Pool and was no longer attached to the 18th Battalion. He did rejoin the Battalion January 17, 1919 at Allner, Germany.

[iii] He was classified B 2 as being undersize and debility. These records do not exist but another Board indicated he complained of nervousness and “weakness” and remarked that there was no sign of these conditions no longer existed.

[iv] Lance-Corporal George Arthur Brettingham, reg. no. 739520. This soldier served in the 18th Battalion and was killed in action, ironically one day after this letter was published, on October 10, 1918 near Iwuy, France.

[v] The meaning of this oblique reference is unknown.

[vi] This is Pte. Fred Kirkley Harrison, reg. no. 739541. He served with the 3rd Field Bakery, Canadian Army Service Corp.

 

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