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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box5/Fold3/1914/52
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateSaturday 29 August 1914
Address From30 St Mary Abbotts Terrace, Kensington, London
Address To
Who ToWilliam Philip ('Will') Schreiner
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. The date has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. Schreiner was resident in St Mary Abbotts Terrace for some weeks during August and September 1914.
1 Saturday
3 Dear Laddie
5 I’m not wrong this time. I do know the date! It will be but a
6sorrowful birthday to you, but I’m glad you have the two dear young
7ones with you. The one thing that has been good is that you’ve had
8this time with them. When once they sail out on life it may not often
11 How they will be thinking of you tomorrow!
13 I’m not afraid of the Germans! taking South Africa! I’m not so mad.
14 I’m afraid of our joining in this war which in Englands part seems
15a colossal crime – & our people killing Germans who have never done
16us one stroke of injury. That is the awful thought. I suppose you have
17heard that 80, 000 Russians have passed through England & have been
18shipped, (the last were perhaps being shipped today) across to France
19to help us. I suppose the man on the street will find out about it
20first the end of next month. They came by way of the extreme north.
21They will know the road now! ^And the Indians too.^ I heard from a
22politician yesterday that there will probably be compulsory service in
23three weeks.
25 Alice has gone to visit one of her sisters for some days. Will return
26next Tuesday I think. I continue flourishingly on monkey nuts & milk.
27I did not go to Eastbourne this morning. The cheap excursion leaves at
288 & I had not of course got your letter at 7 when I would have had to
29start from here. Thank you for the directions. I will leave next
32 I hear (on what you would recognize as the best authority) that in
33high military circles here they expect the Germans to reach Paris in
34about ten days. But there are so many things may happen. Germany must
35be crushed will all the world against her, but I think it may take a
36couple of years. I wish I could look upon war as other people do.
37It’s just the most hideous form of murder to me. I quite agree with
38Pier Basson when he said of the Boer war – "If its right to kill
39hundreds of men why isn’t it right to kill one!"
41 Thy stupid little sister who loves you
42 Olive.