Tuesday, 29 June 2021


I inherited a lot of family postcards from the Edwardian era, which were largely correspondence between my grandmother and her sisters and brothers. As is often the case, there were a number of mystery cards, either because I had no context for them, or because I simply didn't know enough about my grandma's life at that time. Also, the mystery cards could have come from my grandmother, her siblings, my great grandmother or my great Uncle, as all their effects ended up with my father and later with me. 

Tonight, courtesy of a WW1 website called "A Street Near You" I was able to finally put a history to a photo. 

This postcard said simply "Arthur" and on the reverse "Remembrance" and the date he died, a month before the end of the War.

Arthur was a similar age to my grandmother's eldest brother Bill. They would have grown up together in the village.  Both worked as gardeners on large estates, Bill in Canada, and Arthur for Stapleton Park, whose grounds and gardens were designed by Capability Brown. Bill signed up to go to France with the Canadian Regiment, but was never deployed, Arthur joined the Durham Light Infantry as a Lance Corporal and died in France.

I cannot imagine the devastation caused by his death in such a small village. Three young men were lost from the tightly knit community. A hundred years later on I find it so sad as I look at this young man with so much promise.

RIP Arthur Etty, son of Alice and Thomas Etty. 

Forever with the Lord

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