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: British Empire & Commonwealth

: Stephens

: 2005/044/2/079-128

: Letters from India - Rawalpindi, Kohat, Abbottabad

: 6 May 1946 - 22 August 1946

: Letters examine his calling to the Methodist Ministry, the situation in India as he sees it and the future uncertainties for peace. Also his first comments on local troubles between Sikhs and Muslims. Including: 2005/044/2/79: 06/05/46 - To his parents 'I have felt a call to enter the Ministry; and what I have seen since I joined the Army has only made that call stronger' discusses options for study after demobilisation to achieve this. 2005/044/2/80: 12/05/46 - 'Many of my snaps so far have been personal, and groups, but I am gradually getting some of Indian life and customs, so that I could illustrate a little talk on India, or on the Punjab, if I ever gave one' (see photographs on pages 3-7 in album 2005/044/1/1). 2005/044/2/83: 15/05/46 to Rachel, refers to Michael, in Japan, near Hiroshima 'the ruins of Japan'. To all - health issues, also refers to Michael’s visit to Hiroshima. 2005/044/2/84: 22/05/46 - From Kohat to John. 2005/044/2/86: 30/05/46 - Leave has been cancelled. 2005/044/2/91: 11/06/46 - Letter about situation in India as he sees it and the future uncertainties for peace. News that he and others will probably be in army till end of 1947. Controversy is about how demobilisation overlaps with conscription. Wants his parents to write to their local MP Ald Alpass. 'The Indian ORs (Other Ranks) are being demobbed much more quickly than we are...India wants her independence... It is an unfortunate fact that the Hindus, Moslems, Sikhs, and so on will never agree. But we shall have to quit India sooner or later, and whenever we do there will be civil war in India... Even since I have been in India the attitude towards us has changed. We are no longer respected.' 2005/044/2/90: 11/06/46 - Describes a trip over the Kohat Pass with the Pigeoneer (a soldier who trains messenger pigeons) - 40 pigeons in the baskets. Interesting description of ascent and a photograph outside the gate to Tribal Territory (see photograph on page 9 in album 2005/044/1/1). 2005/044/2/93: 12/06/46 - To Philip, sarcasm about 'What the army says today the Unis say tomorrow'. Encloses photograph of Peshawar side of the Kohat Pass (see photographs on page 8 in album 2005/044/1/1). 17/06/46 - To Rachel, photograph enclosed of Dave Ogilvie, myself and Mick Squance(?) riding in Topi Park (see photographs on page 3 in album 2005/044/1/1). 2005/044/2/94: 17/06/46 - To All enclosing 'a fairly reasonable photo of myself. I am wearing my made-to-measure jacket. In the background you can see the mosquito-proof billet' (see photographs on page 9 in album 2005/044/1/1). 'PS please acknowledge the receipt of this snap. You do not seem to have received the ones I sent in March, for you have not mentioned them'. 2005/044/2/98: 19/06/46 - Posted to Kohat refers to sending 'topsec' messages. Still discussing study for the Ministry 'offering myself at the QM Dec 47'. 2005/044/2/99: 24/06/46 - 'Unofficially I am now Unpaid Acting Sergeant!'. 2005/044/2/102-103: 04/07/46 - To John - he is going by truck to Rawalpindi and hopes to take some photographs on the way. Later letter to All - took several shots of the river near Khusalgarh bridge - boundary between NWFP and Punjab (see photographs on page 11 in album 2005/044/1/1). 2005/044/2/107-108: 11/07/46 - Posted to Abbotabad to open up new cipher office. Enjoys the fact that it is cooler. Describes drive from Rawalpindi through mountains (see photographs on page 12 in album 2005/044/1/1). Hand drawn map to Rachel, chess game opener to John, in the role of the older brother giving advice and cricket talk. Many of his letters preoccupied with demobilisation procedures and having to give up Correspondence course (for studying for the Ministry) 'because I got so far behind'. 2005/044/2/114: 20/07/46 - To Rachel, mentions a book by Philip Marsden (one of the lads here) called 'Kashmir Calls' (see 2005/044/3/3). 2005/044/2/118: 29/07/46 - 'the excitement which stopped me going to church last night' refers to fighting between Sikhs and Muslims - Gurdwara set on fire, dozen killed, military called in to restore order 'people who play side by side in Hazara Rovers Hockey Team have been killing each other'. Refers at end to disbandment dinner and two photographs (see photographs on page 14 in album 2005/044/1/1). 2005/044/2/120: 05/08/46 - 'overworked because of rioting in Abbottabad' Encloses cutting from Civil and Military Gazette. 2005/044/2/121: 07/08/46 - 'The trouble brewing here and down the Frontier' and discussion of camera/photos taken (see photographs on page 11 in album 2005/044/1/1). 2005/044/2/122: 08/08/46 - Map of proposed Kashmir trek and detailed plans. 2005/044/2/123: 12/08/46 - Description of excursion to Nathia Gali with Pete Sherry (Northern Command Signals DR) to deliver message to the summer residence of the Governor of NWFP. References to taking photographs and detailed descriptions of village life (see photographs on pages 12-13 in album 2005/044/1/1). 'Assuredly it is good to be alive!'. 2005/044/2/126: 19/08/46 - Reports that there is news of Northern Command Signals being posted to Iraq, Palestine or Italy.

India, Pakistan

: 49 documents

: File

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