William Gilham loyally wrote to Wynne during the war. He had been the kitchen boy, but was transformed by the war. Check out his photo in November, by which time he had served on 6 different fronts. He joined in September 1914. The letter from William Gilham, describing his experiences in Palestine, is transcribed below. I have left his spelling and punctuation unchanged, which given his education, is actually very good. The letter arrived in this state, which Wynne wondered might have been in the sea.
Once more I take my pencil in hand to let you know that I am still in the best of health hoping you and the master are the same sorry I have not written to you befor this as I have been moved about a lot since I last wrote and have been waiting to get settled down befor I could write and let anybody know how I was getting on or where I was and have been waiting to joine my regiment which I am now up the line with and have been with them for three months and don’t feel none the worst for it but when we go in these big stunts it nearly does me in with the egiment (equipment) and pack we have on for it is very hilly and rocky where we are fighting (Jacko) the Turk now befor Jerusalem, the city that I never thought of seeing (obscured word) marched through it and it is a very pretty place indeed for I saw a lot of places that I read out of Bible such as the walls of Jerusalem which have been standing now for thousand years and also I saw the golden Gates of the City, the Garden Tomb or Gethsemane where our Lord Jesus Christ was buried and was camped on Mount Olives was (where) our Lord was crucified and also we was camped on the side of the Mount of Temptations.
Now dear Madam seeing that I have now left this very interesting place I will now sent you my address: Pte. W. Gilham 071810 B Coy, 24th Queen’s R. W. Surrey’s 53 Division E.E. Force as we are not allowed to put it on the top or bottom of the letter. We are now getting some very fine weather after heavy four days of continuous rain and wet through to the skin with out anything else to put on so we had to keep on until it got dry I will now close this short letter hoping that it will find you all in the best of health
from yours truly Servant, William Gilham