Halsey 15 November 1914
From HMS New Zealand
By Ian Fisher
To listen to the audio clip, click play on the bar on the right.
My Dear Father,
I have treated you all very badly in the way of letters lately, but I have absolutely no news and also I get no time to write as one is always doing something. The general news of the war seems to be pretty good, though the casualties are too awful for words and every day one sees some name one knows in the lists. I cannot think that such ghastly slaughter can go on very much longer, but yet the end is impossible to see. I fear our service has come badly out of it in the last 3 weeks and the Good Hope and Monmouth fight was an awful catastrophy, but there it is and we must hope that a similar calamity will be avoided in the future. Of course as far as naval battles are concerned there is little doubt that it is either death or victory nowadays. No ship can stand modern conditions of fighting for more than an hour or so. How sad about Lord Roberts, but I am sure he would have preferred to die where he did, on the battlefield, than anywhere else.
I wonder if Marney has gone over yet and what news you have of Regie. I got the enclosed yesterday and have written and acknowledged the things to Mrs Dalton. Who is she? Please thank Fyfie for her very nice letter, started on 8th and sent off on 12th. She is very busy with all her meetings and things, and you must find it very hard to get everywhere I should think with only Oram and 2 horses.
I am sending Mother the 15 acknowledgements she asked for and if she wants more will she let me know – the warm things have come out with the cold weather and are very much appreciated by all. Tell Mother uncle Harry has sent his boots, which was nice of him, but he has a very small, narrow foot as he wears them over a pair of shoes and they are too small for me to get into at all, but of course I did tell him this.
Much love to you all, ever your affectionate Son