Ralph, Ralph Who? Letters from the Western Front to Darlaston, 1915.

Posted: November 4, 2014 in Mysteries, Soldiers, War Memorials, WWI
The final page of Ralph's first letter, talking of when 'the British Bull-dog bites...' (Walsall Local History Centre)

The final page of Ralph’s first letter, talking of when ‘the British Bull-dog bites…’
(Walsall Local History Centre)

As an archivist, every now and then a collection comes along that peaks my curiosity perhaps a little more than others; this story is about one of those collections, or more accurately two of them. It started back in October 2013 when a letter arrived at the Walsall Local History Centre that was postmarked ‘America’. Inside were two letters sent in April 1915 from a solder, ‘Ralph’, to the proprietors of the Herbert’s Park Tavern in Factory St, Darlaston.’Ralph’ was clearly unidentifiable from the letters, but they do give some clues about his identity and clearly show what he thought of the War: his vivid account of the machine-gunning of stretcher-bearers chilled me. Then in October 2014 a couple of unconnected WWI postcards appeared, or so I thought. The name ‘Ralph’ and the handwriting seemed familiar. I had already listed the first collection, but could this wierd coincidence add anything further to our knowledge… https://wyrleyblog.wordpress.com/walsall/ralph-ralph-who-letters-from-the-western-front-to-darlaston-1915/

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