Monday, February 13, 2012

Dick Joins The Army

This was the first letter Bill Nevard wrote to his brother, Dick after he left to join the army in January of 1943. This copy is heavily edited to hopefully fit the attention span of today's average reader.

Headlands P.O. Sask.
Jan. 30, 1943
Dear Dick
We got your letter last night so now that we have your address we can write to you and let you know what is going on back home. Glad to hear that you made the grade alright and I hope you will be happy in your new surroundings and will find some congenial companions to make army life more pleasant.
When the train pulled out with you on Tuesday the smoke or steam from the engine blew in between the train and the town so that I could hardly see the train and I don't suppose you could see much of Lipton either as you took your departure. I didn't hang around town long after you'd gone. I got the coal oil at Cohen's, hitched up the team, drove around to Jampolsky's for the groceries and then headed home. I didn't find it so cold going home as I expected. I came along quite a bit faster than usual. We went down to the well, watered the cattle and got inside in time for Fibber Mcgee and Molly.
Next morning I woke up in the dark and heard a strange noise. It sounded like a train whistle. Then I heard further noises. I thought it might be Raspberry calving so I got up and lit the lamp. It was 6:45 am. Dad got up , lit the heater and we went out to the stable but it was a false alarm. I guess maybe it was a train whistle I heard. It was sixty below zero when we first went out.
It was too cold to do anything with the horses so I went and cut a load of wood on our north line just west of the gate into Uncle Horrie's. On Thursday it was little warmer and I got a jag of hay and one of oat straw. Friday night I walked to the Post Office. I think it was the first time I've walked there since the Leslie's moved away. The walking wasn't too bad. It was a cold night, moonlight coming home. John Fleming wasn't home when I got there. Jack Binnington and Leonard Wheale were both at the post office.
It was cold and windy on Monday so I went and cut a little dry wood for Uncle Arthur on his North line. On Wednesday I got two more loads of wood home which makes twenty loads in the yard.
On Friday I borrowed your skis for the trip to the post office as the fresh snow has made walking none too good. We got your second letter alright and Mother got letters from Aunt May and Aunt Flo. Aunt May spoke of you visiting them in your uniform.
I guess some of us will be going to Lipton next week to post this letter. I am thinking of writing to Bud now that we know the government definitely intends to keep you. I hear that Edwin and Victor Senft have to go up for training.
We are getting along alright although Mother is bothered with a cold. Dad is listening to the game between Regina and Flin Flon. Previously he was listening to the game between Toronto and Boston won by Boston. Syl Apps was unfortunate enough to break his leg in the second period.
Well Dick , thats all I can tell you for now but I hope to write to you pretty regularly and hope you will find the going not too tough.
So long and best of luck from your brother
E. W. Nevard

E.W. (Bill) Nevard at back left, Dick Nevard at right.


  1. "It was too cold to do anything with the horses so I went and cut a load of wood..."

    My, haven't times changed?

  2. When I read how hard Bill worked day after day on the farm (except Sundays) it is exhausting. We don't know the meaning of hard work nowadays.


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