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58642: Leonard Jackson 54993 Final Letter

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posted on 2024-02-23, 23:00 authored by Great War Archive Project Team

My Grandfather Leonard Jackson of Millbridge near Heckmondwike, West Yorkshire, was killed on the 26th of September 1917, aged 28, at Passchendaele, Belgium. There is no grave as he was blown to pieces by a shell. His name is on the Tyne Cot memorial near Ypres.

He enlisted in June 1916, joining the Royal Welsh Fusiliers as he was working in Wales at the time. He was wounded in the leg in April 1917, but was sent back to the front after treatment.

He left behind a widow, Minnie, and three little girls; Ruby aged 2, Constance aged 4, and Evelyn Mavis, my mother, aged 6. Mother always remembered walking into town with him in his uniform on his last leave, and was very proud of him.

This is his final letter sent a matter of days before he was killed.

Sunday, Sept 16/17 My Dear old Girl, Your two letters to hand the other day, for which I had looked forward to. Do not be afraid Kiddie, when you see there has been severe fighting. It does not follow that we are in it you know. I am glad to hear everybody are well, and pleased that you gave my little girlies enjoyment at the pictures. They would be delighted I am sure. And I would not mind giving you a lift with them. I think I would carry Ruby any distance. Am just about used to walking now. I can quite understand how you feel Kid, when you say you sometimes feel lonely. I feel just the same many a time, and am looking forward to the time when I shall see you and my little ones. As you say - I shall be selfish too, and shall not want to leave you during any of the time in England. You said in one of your letters you had saved and put it in the war loan for me. I thank you, Kiddie, so much for that, but I would much rather you looked after yourself and the Kiddies. I don't bother about money if I can come through this lot all right. With regard to the second letter you wrote, well, Kiddie, the least said about it the better. It came to me more as a shock than anything else, but everybody have their own rights to please themselves. If my mother knew everything as I know them - things of which I dare not speak - she would think herself heartless in refusing me that favour I asked. As you say, what I asked for was for you and the little ones. And what mother says about having money tied up I take as a direct refusal to help you. However, I am saying no more about it, Kiddie, as it is a waste of time and paper, but I hope to make you understand soon. Well. Kiddie, you will think this is a rotten little letter, but I have no more paper. I got a letter from Polly and Bob and a nice little letter from Bessie today. My cousin ### has had leave. There are not a great many for leave now before our draft, but it all depends on my luck how I shall be placed on the list. It will be a pleasure to me to see you all over again. ### #### from ###chester has got a stripe, and has gone in another platoon. I have also been transferred to 13 platoon. So don't forget in the address, that is the only alteration. Well, Kid, will close with best love to mother and all at home. Fondest love and many kisses to you, my old darling, and my sweet little girlies. May god bless you and keep you safe, your ever loving husband Leu XXXXXX

Editor's Comment:
Pte. 54993 Leonard Jackson, 10th Bn. Royal Welsh Fusiliers, was killed on the opening day of the battle of Polygon Wood (the third phase of the third battle of Ypres), serving in the 3rd Division.



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Jackson, Leonard


16th September 1917

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1, 2, 3

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Richard Marshall | Adrian Layden | Jill Layden


The Great War Archive, University of Oxford / Primary Contributor


The Great War Archive, University of Oxford

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