Update 1919










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The Diary of Lieutenant-Colonel Charles Mackesy 1919

Months APRIL - MAY - JUNE

Transcriptions in some cases may be impossible to get exactly right - and the Transcriber has listed these disputed words with underlines, asterisks or [straight brackets] to show them as problem areas. Any member is invited to make suggestions as to what the word or sentence should say. We would welcome comments

1st April
1919
Tuesday
SS Lotus
Halfa.
Started out at 0500 while get(still?) dark for a good long walk into the Desert.
Got back at 1100.
Some of the lady passengers greatly excited that I have had no breakfast.
I had heard of some flint deposit some miles from Halfa where many old flint tools had been found.
I did not come across it.
Saw a fox - vultures are plentiful.
We changed boats today going onto the "Lotus". This will save the government nearly a ton of coal per day as we shall now get our light from shore. The Lotus is a newer boat than the "Meroe" - but I do not like her as well. I have an eastern cabin now which is very hot.
Tea I had at Mr. Feyes the local Railroad Manager, who has charge of the boats as well.
Dinned at the (acting?) Governors, Major K. Flint, his junior Captain [space left here to enter name: not done] had just arrived this afternoon from Port Sudan.
A message from H.Q. says we shall be able to get away in a few days.


Wadi Halfa today.
2nd April
1919
Wednesday
SS Lotus - Halfa
Wired Khartoum to find out would the [next] few days interval give me time to visit Khartoum. Also got Governor [Captain Payne] to worry, could we have lookouts.
The answer to my whim was 'Yes" you will have time to visit Khartoum "**** to Governor" wins(or whims?).
I had fares approved. Their wires came late in the day.
Had Tea with Mr. Feyes, a walk in the desert and early to bed.
No news from Egypt.
Worst of all,[ conceivably] be here for another month.
So I intend to run up to the Capital - its a thirty hour trip.
3rd April
1919
Thursday
Sudan Sleeping Car on my way to Atbara.
Went down to (the) Government Office with Colonel K******(name?) and four others officers who wanted the trip up to Khartoum. We were to get half fares). And while there (at the office) a wire came instructing me to take my party that day to Port Sudan to embark on the SS Burielos.
Sent Major Duskan(?) right back to tell everyone to pack up as we should be leaving by the 1340 Train while I stayed behind to make arrangements.
Train put off at 1900 when all Halfa came to see us off - Every lady has been very kind indeed.
Great emotional display from the girls when they knew they were getting away. We left on time taking the ships manager and steward with us.
Dinner on board. The Sudan trains are the best I have ever been on. The sleepers were most comfortable (to each of the seven of us. The rest, two, in a compartment.)


An earlier photo of the locomotive type of the Nubian Railroad still in use in 1919.
To conquer the Sudan, the British built a railroad across the Nubian Desert and around the Nile cataracts. Completed in two years, it carried the troops, cannons, horses, and gunboats (brought in pieces) that defeated the Khalifa's army on Sept. 2, 1898 outside Omdurman.
4th April
1919
Friday
Railroad Train to Sudan.
Sunrise was perfect, a stretch of very rugged track, beyond a perfectly bland bit of desert. The window glasses are a grey blue, this makes the glaring sand shine look a little strange.
All day we saw a kind of desert until we struck the Nile again at Abu Hamed. This is quite a large native settlement both sides of the Nile and constricted, very narrow strips to be seen - but the ***** ***** the mountains I saw at Atbara.
An invitation from the Club met us at the station to come and have Tea - we went over in a special coach. Very nice place. A Mr. Hindmarsh took my party to see all around in his motor.
Saw Atbara bridge, native village - drive in the desert and back for the Train. Time 1930.
A most enjoyable afternoon.


Atbara.
5th April
1919
Saturday
Port Sudan Hotel
A very goods nights rest was followed by a most interesting early morning.
When I woke up before sun up we were traveling through what looked like a park landscape. Saw hundreds of gazelles and camels, many black people et cetera.
Train wasn't comfortable - at Station "Susnit" - we were 300 feet above sea level. Have down grade to Port Sudan, reached at 1650.
R.N.O. (Royal Naval Officer= Captain Draper) waiting at boat. Instead of **** at first *******(intimated?) we should have two ******(bunks??), only one was on **** **** to take it. Made(?) available(?) food on ***** **** the ten days onboard.
Stopped night in Hotel - good.
Saw R.N.O. after he had got to bed. See if he could *** ***** better arrangements.
Twenty-four (is) too many passengers. Says he is working under orders.
Saw Felon(name?) again. Port Sudan has Egyptian Troops.
6th April
1919

Sunday
5 in lent
SS Beluros - Red Sea.
[this page written in very light lead pencil- very difficult to read]
Not being satisfied with the large amount of people in so small a boat and also hearing that we were not going direct to Suez. I got the R.N.O. [Royal Naval Officer] out of bed late yesterday to talk matters over. He refused to order changes. I spent the night ashore at the Hotel and had a good bathe.
The boat sailed this morning at 0700 we have our ****** **** for eight first ***** **** **** hospital *****. But had two passengers of **** forty-four - but put in hospital out of thirty-four (plus) a crew of thirty-eight workers, one hundred all told.
Beluros is small, 300 feet, slow and dirty. Captain with **** **** second lieutenant Mahony is on board, he is their pay officer ******.
[next sentence faded out]
Had appointed him ships Adjutant.
Several of the girls very nervy - most sleep on deck - cabins stuffy. Meals good - waitress and steward good and obliging.
Head on choppy sea. But cool.

7th April
1919
Monday
SS Beluros - Red Sea
I felt seedy last night and left the table before dinner was through. Lay down and must have instantly gone to sleep. Before I know anything more I woke up this morning. Sleeping in my clothes all night. Many of the people are sick. - Miss MacDonald very bad.
Ship is quite under military routine - ******* ***** ***** et cetera.
At 1100 we had boat drill and everybody knows their stations.
We have had head winds all the way - cool and nice.
(We) Have had to slow down so as not to get into Yambo before daylight, the entrance is guarded by many coral reefs and dangerous - almost no lights.
8th April
1919
Tuesday
SS Beluros - off Yambo
Yambo was reached rather late. We were taken twelve miles out of our course during the night - Reefs abound.
The Arab Kalif(?) Mam****** came on board.
I went through the Town first. Most uninteresting austere place - not a tree or shrub. Only place Red Coral grows. Got some and stones.
Sent passengers ashore in two batches with some soldiers to look after them.
Unloaded wheat all day - ****(late?) after dark. Was told the Sherifian soldiers had not been paid for (a) very long (time)- trouble was brewing. They had asked *** ** money aboard - Captain *****(placed?) a ****(guard?) through the night. I wanted him to move back a few hundred yards - Said he dared not on account of reefs.
So made arrangements with the all night sentries and officers watches.
Ladies made to sleep down below in fear of snipers.
Cool still weather.

[Transcribers note: It is difficult to know whether this port is in fact written as "Yenbo" by T.E. Lawrence, as this name often appears as "Yanbu", Yambu" and other variations as a port on the Red Sea. This therefore is probably the town where the Arab force raised by Fiesal was gathered to begin the revolt against the Turks - Intersecting that this force was not able to be moved into action by Lawrence and/or the British until mid 1917 -well after the tide of battle had been turned against the Turk by the ANZAC and British Forces, and who had already beaten back the Turks across the Sinai Desert and into Palestine in a series of victories.
Modern reference and English writing for this town is: Yanbu' al bahr. ]
9th April
1919
Wednesday
A quiet night passed.
We hardly had been finished (unloading wheat?) the night before - we got under way about 8.30 - Don't know why not *****(coaling?) - cool morning.
Nothing to report.
All the passengers are well. The sea calm and the weather most delightful.
10th April
1919
Thursday
Wedj was reached about 0900. The sea perfectly calm with a cool northerly breeze blowing.
Wedj is much smaller than Yambo but a much cleaner town, it has no wells. All the water being collected in cisterns during the rainy weather. The Wireless Station which was here has been removed to Jedda. So there is no way to get at this place but by messenger.
I found a strange method in the Post Office, the mail actually haggled about [to fix] the price of a stamp. They wont sell them [over the counter]. You bring your letters he stamps it canceling the stamp, they then hand the letter back to you to get it to its destination the best way you can.
Got some nice coral (out of a boat I hired with [name?] ).
Left for Suez at 1330.
Nice weather.
11th April
1919

Friday
SS Beluros - Red Sea
The night appears to have been a very rough one.
I slept through it, but hear many couldn't (sleep). In the morning there were many sick people.
The sea was not so bad, but our boat so small we got a good bit of tossing. We hardly were able to make three knots during the night and five in the (long?) morning.
The wind was quite cold about.

12th April
1919
Saturday
British ****sit Camp - Suez.
The sea has calmed down very considerably and by 1000 was very good.
We were over taken by four boats this morning, who disappeared into the mist ahead of us.
As we neared Seuz the weather got much warmer - arrived there at 1330.
It took a long time before we could berth.
It had been rumoured that there was a lot of gold (Hajez) on board for sale in the ****(name?). So the Gippies marched (on) the ship.
We find the country as disturbed as it was two weeks ago.
Officers must go ashore. Our officers all had to report to ****sit(name) Camp. I went to Seuz. The women stayed on board.
Only one Train per day for Suez at 0630.
A Lieutenant Colonel Sanderson(maybe?) in charge of Camp.
It appears that the authorities had backed down altogether - our Gippies getting what they want.
13th April
1919
Palm Sunday
Ismailia Camp.
After spending a fair night in Camp. Lieutenant Colonel Huddlefold and Puera Mayor Duncan[?] and self caught the 0630 Train to Suez. Girls on board. Arrived Ismailia 9.30. Met by many friends. The Brigade [is now] scattered over the Delta.
The news as to Allenby's policy is fairly sickening, there must be something behind it to be afraid. Has he lost his nerve. Are his hands tied.
Any questions asked **** where the deported trouble makers have been released.
A deputation has gone to the Peace Conference.
All permits to travel [to the] Canal Zone [have been] cut out.
Gippoes go everywhere. Allowed to carry Turkish flags. Make processions, ********** over people and not to be ****[find/spied??] on.
14th April
1919

Monday
Camp Ismailia
Back into harness again.
Found that General Broadbent has gone home and General Lloyd had taken his place as G.O.C. P.L.ofC. - called on him.
Colonel Chaytor arrived midday by Train. Pleased just to see me in his flock again. He had an exciting time being held up two or three days at Assiut.
Called on General Williams Admin. **[c.o.?]
Found letter from American Consul who will take over a little Jewish American boy with New Zealand -[he has been] here at this Camp. Will send him up to Cairo tomorrow.
Mail from New Zealand and papers. Mother left family to live by herself in VO.[?]
I think [Bradbury??] letter will soon [find] her VO [address].
Addressed the men for one and a half hours tonight.
Six hundred and fifty in Camp - two hundred moving out this week - Brigade scattered over [the] Delta.

15th April
1919

Tuesday
Continental Hotel
Left Ismailia by the 1010 Train, only one running at the present.
Had got Miss Jones to accept [being a] passenger [on the] "Dorset" for New Zealand. She had refused Major Hullbert.
*****less both - Chaytor with me -Trains cramped, Trains [now have] guards.
[Arrived] Zagazig Station - I found had partly been burnt down by the mob.
Cairo quiet - Astonished at the many people who *****[continued] to stare ****** and seemed pleased that the rumours concerning my death were not true.
[The] Little Jewish boy had [disguised] himself and could not be found in Camp. [He] wants to stay encamped with the Troops.
Gave orders to send him up under escort when caught.
Spent [an] hour or two at Aotea. Only three patients left - [They shall] close down soon.

16th April
1919

Wednesday
Continental Hotel.
Busy about my work all day, Cairo appeared fairly quiet, there had been two more cases of vitriol throwing. One man has been permanently blinded.
In the provinces everything is reported quiet.
Large forces are guarding the Railways every where. And many patrols are met within Cairo. But the general strike of Government [office workers] still continues and only sufficient trains are running to satisfy the military requirements.
Headquarters expressed their wish to have me lecture later on.
Had Major Wilkie and his *****[girlfriend] for dinner - he is writing up the War. She (***tor) quite nice.

[Transcribers note: [1] Vitriol is the name that alchemists gave to sulfuric acid. The act of splashing someone with acid intentionally is "vitriolage".
[2] Major A Wilkie, Wellington Mounted Rifles, was the original compiler of the book "The New Zealanders in Sinai and Palestine". Unfortunately according to a NZTEC account, senior officers back in New Zealand considered his work needed more support, and although Lieutenant Colonel Guy Powles was also not academically trained in historical writing, he was given Wilkie's work to polish up for publishing. Therefore Wilkie only retains the sub-line "From material compiled by" in the books fly-leaf.]

17th April
1919
Thursday
Camp Ismailia
Left Hotel at 0700 to get a seat on the 0800 Train - only one Train a day and very crowded.
Got in at 1201.
General Chaytor had been down to see me yesterday. [He] is now off to spend Easter in Jerusalem.
A most interesting Lecture was given in the evening by a Captain Woolley sent down specially from G.H.Q. to let the men know the exact position of affairs as now existing in Egypt - and the causes leading up to them.
The lecture was given in the M.T.Depot - I should really liked to have got the men over there, but he has no time, so I will have to give the boys a re-hash.
18th April
1919
Good Friday
I had intended marching the men down to the British West Indies Camp to listen to Captain Woolley's lecture on present conditions in Egypt, but in learning last night that this was Good Friday I cancelled all parades et cetera.
We shall now have to give the lads his lecture second-hand.
Many Japanese oilmariners [note: looks like oilmariners, could this be a new word for a new ship class that we refer to Oil-Tankers today?] and Destroyers have passed by the Camp on their way home - and many Troop Ships for India and Australia go by - Our boys are getting a bit fretful at the delay.
I hear the B.U.R.I.'s [unknown abbreviation: name of force behind uprising?] threw four bombs into the officers mess wounding several but missing the Commanding Officer for whom they seem to have no love - They sent him a letter saying -they had some more bombs and he better clear [off] before they use them. He and his second in Command got leave at once - nice state of affairs.
******** *** one and said to have killed a few of their officers.
[Had] Dinner with Major [name?].


[note:] I find it interesting that Mackesy has referred to Chaytor as "Colonel Chaytor" for most of the Diary - now he refers to him as "General Chaytor". Perhaps Chaytor lost rank back to Colonel at Wars end, as many officers did - I've been told to save the Government coffers, but perhaps he has been promoted again - any ideas out there?
19th April
1919
Saturday
Passed off quietly - In Camp all day till evening when I made two or three calls.
Overheard others telling Miss Jones of the wire just *****[un coded?] [saying] that the "Dorset" was going to be filled up with Australians and that the **[Cabin/berth?] of * ** [* M.R.] had got ready for her could [now] not be taken. So it may be with the few first class passengers she has booked Miss Jones is are of them [strange sentence can't get it right].
It is **** their disappointment to the men.[??]
I gave the second part of our recent Refugee Experiences in the Lecture Hall at night and had practically the whole Camp present.
Last night the South Africans and the British West Indies [Troops] had a row, with result several [are] in Hospital - all not expected to live.

B.W.I. members of the British West Indies Regiment
20th April
1919

Easter Day.
Church parades are very small now to what they had been - and the sermon was I believe the poorest I had heard Davis deliver - Pity.
No news of any kind.


[Transcribers note] I think the reference to Black and White soldiers being involved in a fracas is interesting, and a incident that I had not seen reported before.

21st April
1919
Easter Monday
Bank Holiday
There were sports on at the 2nd Battalion B.W.I. (British West Indies) swimming et cetera. Many of our boys went down and managed to get two first prizes.
I had intended going in the afternoon but visitors detained one - In the morning I was up Town to make sure about Miss Jones accepting a passage to Australia on the "Dorset". This boat was to take about ninety of our men - but the Australians whose boat she is - are filling her up with their own people.
The day was very warm.
Several papers and two parcels [arrived] from New Zealand.
General orders out again: That all officers in Egypt are to wear Le***** [Leodvous?? I need a uniform specialist to tell me what this item is?] again - Does not look like peace.
22nd April
1919
Easter Tuesday
Really the very worst desert storm Khamsin of the season, never saw a worse one but it died down towards evening. Our tents however being very old and much worn - suffered considerably.
*** this tennis[?] grass[?] by the men was completed yesterday - But I think they are using for Golf Links, quite extraordinary.
A new Peer is being built for the Convalescent Camp so that they can have a landing of their own where to embark in boats and also do some swimming.
The nurses ask for a *******[bathing?] ***[bar?]. Will have to try and get this one.
23rd April
1919
Wednesday
We had a most successful first day swimming - The British West Indians were down in force and we are pleased to say they won several events - They are all very happy fellows. Their Colonel Wordhill was here as well. Major General Paiting[?] and Generals Williams and Oswald, who is the general officer Commanding] Ismailia - and General Wallen[?] were also with us. Here [also] most of the English Ladies and all of the New Zealand ones. *****[Lady?] Lue[?] also graced my veranda for afternoon Tea.
In the evening I had dinner with Mrs Muller, sister of Mrs Penningthorne who [asked??] me to meet some people, and had one more discussion with Miss Jones who was present.
24th April
1919
Thursday
Left Camp to catch the 1000 Train. We had long delays on the road. Not getting to Cairo till about 1500, just in time if I hurried to get to H.Q. [and] get the pay cheque and bank my money.
Meant to see Miss Edwards but failed, wanted to exchange films with her. My prints had just come to hand. We had tried to ******[conserve?] film by taking different snaps - she was with the 'Before' party.
Cairo seems quiet, just as in the provinces. I hope the rising is over but doubt may be expressed. Sure they hear how their *******tion has singally failed they **** she's *******.
Major and Mrs Wilkin for dinner - Madame Huchell[name?] as ******** ************ to [be?] leaving for France[?].
25th April
1919
Friday
Ismailia Camp.
All day in Camp. The hottest day of the season so far - left Cairo with the morning Train at 0820 today. The Station is well guarded and no one who is not a traveler is allowed on the platform. As the public are restricted from traveling it's much like 1914 and '15. All soldiers - but as there is only one Train a day, one has to be early to get a comfortable seat.
This being ANZAC Day there were church services in the morning and some functions at the ANZAC Hostel in the afternoon where General Allenby presided.
Sorry I could not stay to attend.
Everything seems quiet in the country at present - I hope it remains so. If not let the trouble come quick - so we can get it over and then home.
26th April
1919
Saturday
Busy about Camp. Getting ready to leave quickly once my leave has been approved.
Weather nice and cool.
A ******[name of nationality] ship with cargo of C*****nese soldiers and **** took fire in the Canal at Kant'ara. She was loaded with Uoptha-Bevseuz F*****[?] and [space left blank here by Mackesy] a nice cargo to be seen. The F******[?] promptly jumped over board - many being drowned.
Our ** Division H.Q. happened to be near - the boys jumped on board and worked the hoses so well that the fire was not allowed to spread beneath the poop deck, there were fifty w*****[women?] on board. No **** of these was taken by the *******[nationals]. Everybody for himself - what a difference between the behaviour of the two races, British and Dago - But for our boys the damage would have been very very great and the Canal blocked.
27th April
1919
Low Sunday
1 after Easter
Left early 0800 to run down to Kant'ara East to see General Chaytor. I have received several letters from members of the New Zealand Sisters Ladies who came with Miss Ruth[?] to do war work, but were dismissed by the New Zealand Government. They ask for means to pay their passage back. Miss Ruth having [been] told things they could get off the "Friends of our Soldiers Club" Canteen Ismalia. [She] got this general promise that our New Zealand Women would be allowed to be *********[stationed??] here after we had gone, in spite of the Government saying they were not to be helped back.
Will run down to Port Said and interview Mrs Kurtson[?] personally so she may deal with the others - back in Camp by 1400. Saw Captain Gunell and Miss Goldie and Orsa[?] three of my Kaya party.

28th April
1919

 

Monday
Left Camp at 0600 in the car for Port Said. We stopped at Mrs Chisholms Kant'ara West at 0700 for breakfast, then onto the Port - getting there somewhere about 0945.
Had a nice chat with [space left here by Mackesey] Angus for the British and F******** W** ****[company?]. Met a Naval Doctor whom I had seen at Alex[andria]. He goes as a Missionary to Central Africa as soon as demobilised. Saw Mrs Kurtson and explained the position to her re: Miss Ruth [? could be spelt differently] statement to get her passage money out of the Soldiers Club profits. These were handed over by Miss Jones and have by now all been spent on the boys.
Met several people who had been waiting at Port Said for a boat to the United Kingdom for work and m****[?]
Got back about 1800 - cool day, nearly cold.
Hear I am to get away May 1st.

29th April
1919
Tuesday
Heard word that I am to leave for England on the first. Four officers and one hundred men are to go with me, they are to be in Camp by tomorrow, coming in from their various stations.
I am having Corporal Curtis mark me two boxes to take my extra kit.
Have to *****[inform?] this ********* the Red Seal shells and Corrally[?] et cetera.
Major Hursthorne had a farewell party to which I went. It was quite enjoyable - the first dance I had assisted at.
It's not dancing just company.
Many sad hearts that I am leaving in Camp. But they will also soon get away.
30th April
1919
Wednesday
Ismalia Camp.
Last night in Egypt.
Taken up with packing. Had left two boxes to go with the next Troop ship to New Zealand. I am just taking my belongings with me to make sure I won't loose them.
The country is quietening down and I do not think there will be anymore rioting.
Several officers and men were down on the British who had left for England. All report things are quiet now - all government officials have or are returning to work and things are getting normal again.
Glad to be leaving for England at this time of year, the country ought to look at its best.
1st May
1919
Thursday
H.M.T. Caledonian
Finished packing early. All kits now stacked by 0800. Men paraded by 0900 and marched off to station, Train was to leave by 1055 but did not do so till 1200.
I had several calls to make in the morning. We arrived two and a half hours late at Port Said - the Train had Three hundred Australians besides our one hundred.
The "Caledonian" was waiting and we soon got off - not having had any food from breakfast 0700 till 1900. I was very hungry.
Lieutenant Deans, second lieutenant Armstrong and second lieutenant [space left here by Mackesy] men with me.
The men were all old hands. Met Mr. A*****[?] and his wife who had just come up through Africa from Cape to Cairo - and really all the way to Blighty.
2nd May
1919
"Caledionia"
Friday.
The Caledonia has a good name and lived up to it. As the day progressed the wind got up and the sea became very rough - we have 1520.1675 **** and fully 100 [note: I suspect this is an error, and should read 1000] passengers on board, the crew numbers about three hundred.
The many children all a great nuisance, what little deck space there is is used by them - all badly brought up as is the usual custom today.
The weather is very cold.
I have met several people on board whom I know. Lieutenant Parsons Signal Troop Ass Division [He] was with me on the "Kyara" two years ago.
By the way she was ******[rolling?] this Mediterranean, what a lot of vessels are on that ******.
I hear Troops in Egypt 1st of May will get extra [duty till pay?]



3rd May
1919
"H.M.T.S. Caledonia"
Saturday
As the day progressed the sea got calmer and each **** **** slowly passengers appearing. The men are not comfortable but there is no good [moaning], they are heading the right way. Some fault is found that beer is a [penny or perhaps sixpence?] a glass. I tell them to [leave/abstain?] it if they think it is too dear.
9.45 today is boat drill and a A.S.C. Major is O.S. ships.
I have seen three Lieutenant Colonels and several Majors - no end of Parsons - the officers all make a poor impression. Not what one expects of a British Officer.
We passed Crete about midday, also sighted a ship or two.
The place is so crowded that I prefer to stay in my cabin most of the time.
One of our men, Edwards, is in hospital recovering [from] Malaria.
4th May
1919
Caledonia
Sunday
2 after Easter.
A Service at 1030, I did not attend, sea very smooth. My cabin is nearest to the poop deck and has a lot of vibration, but is well ventilated, but as the men (********?) are day and night in front of it yabbering away it is not as pleasant a retreat as it might be.
I hear we shall get in on Wednesday morning, and possibly I may get away on the express (Rapid) for Paris. This would be rather nice - the rest will have to wait for a Troop Train which moves slowly.
Nothing to relate - time bears heavy on our hands.
Have finished the book "A Mormon[??] Pilgrim to Mecca" - but **** by *******[name?] of the British and Foreign Bible Society Port Said, and had given it to Mr. H***** of the E.G.M. to take back to him when he returns to Egypt.
5th May
1919
H.M.T. Caledonia
Monday
We passed through the straights of Messina during the night some time and are now opposite Stramboli at 0700.
It appears strange that so many people should live on the Islands lower slope near the sea. Had quite a good sized Township of well built white houses.
The mine *******[sweeping devices] which had been attached to the ship before entering the straights were taken up again after getting through. They were torpedo shaped appliances carried along some distance from both sides.
Weather very fine - sea smooth.
Nice talk with an American Martin from Abelene Kansas - who is a missionary in Africa.
Long interested by the ********[surname??].


the Island of Stromboli
6th May
1919
HMT Caledonia
Tuesday
The morning looked as though it might be wet and rough, but all passed off well.
Corsica was passed in the forenoon. There seemed still to be lots of snow on the tops of the hills. Many towns seen all on the hillsides - Elba on the south side looked also very ruggered.
Many new faces are on the deck, the weather is so good that one would think it was impossible to be sea-sick - sea quite smooth.
The many children, all badly brought up, are a constant annoyance.
Exercise is quite out of the question, so I remain most of the day in my cabin.
The many officers on board appear a very poor lot, drinking *********[excessively?] and make silly talk most of the day. Several with their everlasting forced laughter (send one mad[?]) reminding one constantly of the laughing Jackass.
7th May
1919
On Rapid train to Paris
Wednesday
Got in very early - and ****** ****. Got the draft all away to a Camp *** 8, Carcasson.
A Lorry[?] came for our luggage at 1330. Also a car for us **** took us to [the] Railway Station where we got the R.P.O. to give us *****[travel?] and baggage was looked after - we got away at 1800. Seats had been reserved for us by the R.T.O. in the Rapid - we had dinner on board.
With me were three Lady Doctors. Two Majors one a a Padre the other R.E. [Royal Engineers].
We spent a rather disap**able night ****Thing up ice the Train this *******.
Three Pounds three shillings and sixpence for a sleeping birth - I did not conceive it worth the money.
Before dark what we saw of the country was very charming indeed. So pleased to see many trees again.
8th May
1919
On Train Paris - Bourlogue
Thursday
Arrived Paris at 0900 we had two hours to direct ourselves to the other side of town to catch the "Guard du Nord" - We got there and paid for seats. **** thing was [late] - but in the last minute we found two of the ladies luggage had not turned up.
There was nothing for it but get them all out of the Train and wait for another one. We had a most woeful lot of trouble with the registrar of the Luggage - The people official seen ***** ***** and excited - found the luggage missing at the Lyon Station. Drove out in a Taxi to Dois du Borulouge[?] and had afternoon tea. Magufi***[place name] place saw Champs de Elysees, Arc du Triumph et cetera.
Gladly left dear Paris at 2100 - to put another night on the track.
9th May
1919
Imperial Hotel London
Friday
Got into Boulogne about 0530.
The R.T.O. who had been brung up the night before by Doctor Greene to met a New Zealand Colonel [who] was at his office and had help and advice.
After an early breakfast Doctor Greene and Murphy and myself walked [to the] Old Boulogany and saw what we could, at 0930 we came to the boat. The doctors had some little trouble with the ******[stamped?] E.O. boat - left at 1030 very full - smooth passage. Two hours or less.
Got a number one Pulman compartment (4x) 2/6 [Two shillings and sixpence] each seat.
Good Lunch - Magnificent country through Kent to London. Doctor Maier stayed at Folkestone. Our luggage on second train, so had to wait.
Then down to [the] Imperial Hotel [at] Russell Square - saying goodbye to the others.
Found Major Davis at Headquarters but no one else - arranged to come back tomorrow at 1100.
10th May
1919
Basing - Stoke
Saturday.
Rather late for breakfast, which was very poor indeed. Don't like my Hotel - Chambermaid nice but French. Why? The man who cut my hair and shaved me, German, Why? The waiter at the table could hardly speak English, Why?
Can't get washing done under risk.
Saw Major Harvey now A.A.G. - General Melville and Colonel Hall away. Arranged for investiture [to] take place [on the] 17th and asked for return passage to Egypt for 2nd June.
Not a single New Zealand Infantryman saluted - I asked was there an order against it - they are very bad.
Had a wire from Gordon Melville to come for the weekend. Caught the 1700 Train and met where he lives [at] Church Square Basing, Stoke.
Nice house magnificent children - doing well with his practice.
Weather good.
11th May
1919
2 Church Square - in Basing, Stoke
Sunday
3 after Easter
Out with Gordon in his car in the forenoon - he ****** *******.
[In the]afternoon [his wife] came too and he motored us down to the Tines[?] at [space left here by Mackesy], very beautiful is the country.
**** ***** **** one large pair. We had Tea and then [drove] back. Beginning to rain.
Last night he [Gordon] invited General Marsh the big Railroad Constructor to call in and see me. Lady Marsh was also there - [she was] very nice. He has done exceedingly good work. Came from Indian Railway novice and he's got a KCMG and some other things. Hi and Geldings work together.
Weather turned very cold - I feel it much.


Saint Michael's Church - Church Square - Basingstoke today.
12th May
1919
Imperial Hotel
Monday.
Left with the 0855 Train - Saw General Melville and Colonel Hall et cetera at Headquarters. They had very little use for ***** Chaytor.
Wired Elliott for address of Ethel Bell - [I] wish to call [on her.] Also wired Tom Mackesy if [he would] consider to see me wednesday.
Had a letter from Jessie Alexander in answer to my wire arranging arrival.
Lose a terrible lot of time in getting about - not knowing [the place]. I ask, and so frequently I get the wrong information.
The Hotel service is shockingly bad - probably they are overcrowded but it is no excuse - You can get no washing done under a week. Food always cold and long in coming.
Went to see Mat**** Jus******[perhaps a name of a show?] to see some of the larger war celebrities.
13th May
1919
Imperial Hotel
Tuesday
Spent the day about Town. I had wired Elliot for the address of Ethel Bell but he referred me to Aunt Alice - from whom I get a reply tomorrow evening.
I looked up the New Zealand Officers Club, 38 Hill Street, near Berkeley Square. It was a long walk. Met some (two) Aucklanders and one of the Woolleys from Whangarei in the street. I had Tea and came back here in the Trolley.
After dinner I got a taxi over to 68 Upper Gloucester place where the Bells live. Found them in a small flat three flights up. Her mother Louise has been ill all winter. The girls look much the same but older of course - glad to see me - very much surprised.
14th May
1919
Imperial Hotel
Wednesday
Walking most of the forenoon.
Tried to get rubber heels on my boots while I waited - and only managed [to get somebody to do] it on the seventh try.
Called at 28 Victoria Street [on] H.H. Humprey, Consulting Engineers, where Maud Bell is in charge of all their books and also secretary to three companies - took her out to dinner at the Imperial - then went home with her to Aunt Louise (now 78 years old) is fading - weak heart and the girls are anxious about her.
They have done well, working since they left school I presume. Humprey could not speak too highly of Maud who has been eighteen years with him and practically runs the office - he living out of town.
The weather is very fine and looks at its best.
Saw Houses of Parliament and Westminster but did not go in.
15th May
1919
Imperial Hotel
Thursday
Bright and early before I went to breakfast the opening of my door revealed Alex Jack standing outside - Had heard he was in Town and came to look me up before his classes. He is taking a three month course in Business, finishing up next week. Hopes to get a home soon.
Went to Kensington Gardens and they [look] glorious in their shiny colours.
*****[Paris?] is not in it with London.
Have failed all along the line to locate the Wildes - Reids (relations). I think Reading is the place but have not been able locate them, when I come back from Ireland will have a run down [there].
Nurse Cavells remains were brought to Westminster for services to day. Queen Alexandra present.
I had Ethel for dinner - the mother not so well to day.



[transcribers notes:] Executed during WWI was Edith Cavell, a nurse from England who was working in Belgium during the war. While not a spy, secretly she worked helping British, French, and Belgian soldiers to escape from behind the German lines and eventually rejoin their units. She housed as many as 35 refugees at once in the nursing school where she was the administrator. When the Germans occupied Belgium they converted Cavell's nursing home into a Red Cross hospital, and let her continue as Matron under German supervision. By 1915 she had helped more than 100 British and an additional 100 French and Belgian soldiers. but the Germans grew suspicious and arrested her in August. Her trial in October lasted only two days and resulted in a death sentence, in spite of appeals from both the American and Spanish ambassadors for clemency. On the morning of October 12th , 1915, Edith Cavell was executed by a German firing squad and buried nearby. Eventually her body was exhumed and returned to her native soil in Great Britain for reburial - you will find these words on her statue in St Martins Park "'Humanity, Fortitude, Devotion, Sacrifice"
16th May
1919
Imperial Hotel - London
Friday
To day I visited Westminster Abbey and had a walk along the embankment. Good look at the obelisk and the various bridges. The Lions at the obelisk had several holes through the metal where falling shrapnel struck them. I am inclined to think that the diversion measures probably did more damage to London people and property than the bombs that the Bosh dropped.
In the evening I went to Bells for dinner, I like them as I did of old. But the Aunts always trick to keep us apart - Jessie they never *** look to see them. They are queer spinsters, mother delightful.
Called on Lieutenant Colonel F****[Freddy?] Hurbut, head of Division Department, and got my Long Service Medal.
17th May
1919
Hoyton - Liverpool
Saturday
Up early to get uniform into proper shape et cetera for the Palace.
I got there right on the minute, getting out at Edge Hill were Jessie was waiting for me.
I had 1030.
I was put in with the C.M.G. orders - the D.S.O.'s being in the next pen ****[wiped??] off spaces in the Palace, a **** was put over in D.S.O. for that order.
The King presented their Medals in the court yard, and on a ramp with a dais.
He spoke quite a long time with me asking several questions.
Everything went off well.
At 1425 I caught the Train from Euston to Liverpool, getting out at Edge Hill. Found Jessie was waiting for me. I had wired her yesterday - she looked well.
We took the Train to Huyton where *****[name?] lives, she is looking after the house and kids while they are away.
18th May
1919
Huyton
Sunday
4 after Easter.
Breakfast fairly late 0930. Then 1100 to C.o E. [Church of England] a long long service- Minister old - voice not distinct.
On the road home we overtook a Mr Turton and his daughter - they asked [us] to Tea, then themselves came to dinner. He lost his only son at Solonia - He has something to do with Liverpool Municipality, surveyor I think.
The children here are Margaret 15, and Betty 9, the latter a smart little girl in every way.
Margaret is very tall for her age and larger boned. They had a brother called {space left here by Mackesy] who is away at boarding school - Jessie finds much fault with Margaret, too much I fear. But she says Margaret is lazy and not trustworthy about her duties. Is shielded by her mother against a strict Father, and has been spoiled since. The mother came back from India - mother firm but cold.
19th May
1919
Huyton
Monday.
Went up to Town with Jessie, left her at her office, then took the elevated [scenic platform?] and had a good look at the docks. Went out as far as Seaforth. Returned I called at the Housing Department of Mr Turton. Who showed me over the Townhall and parts of Liverpool, he is head of the Building Department and has now about ten thousand poor people housed. He showed me some of the buildings he had erected where former slums had stood.
Saw Cathedral. At 1400 called for Jessie [and] had lunch with her, met Miss Pembuton whom I am said to [have] met before.
Then saw some more of the Town - had Tea at the Middlelands hotel "Adelphi" - Then home to dinner - the day fine but very very very raw.
Liverpool has grown greatly since I had seen it [last].
20th May
1919
Train to Channel boat - to Kingston
Tuesday
Up to Town again - After leaving Jessie I spent several hours in the Museum which is quite an interesting place. It had been closed down during the war and is just being opened up, getting a good spring clean.
After lunch we did some shopping - Jessie getting a dress for her Aunt. Back to Huyton after Tea, a very pleasant motor drive of an hour or so. Then dinner, after which we caught the 1900 Train back to Town leaving my luggage at the station, [then] we went to the Theatre - seeing the Mikado - We had some real good laughing over it.
Had to leave before it was finished for me to catch the Irish Mail and Jessie her Train back to Huyton.
The run to Hollyhead took four hours - Train getting in at 0200.

Hollyhead.
21st May
1919
Limerick
Wednesday.
I had wired for a berth and found one ready for me - downstairs very smelly. But I was soon off to sleep.
The sea was calm, but the boat late, so that this usual mail train from Dublin was missed - which necessitated waiting for one and a half hours at Limerick Junction.
Elliott, to whom I had wired had come down to meet two Trains, and was going to meet the third when I arrived at the Bank[?]. Annie Taylor, now quite grey, had a lunch waiting - It was 1430 when I got in.
In the evening they took me to see a friend of theirs, a wealthy spinster who had just sold out a lovely place - very cheap - a Miss Baker - going to Dublin - great friend of theirs.
Weather still fine.
Had a talk with Lionel Eaglestone.
22nd May
1919
Limerick
Thursday.
A good nights rest. The Bank **** is a big high building with lots of stair-climbing.
Irish time is twenty-five minutes ahead of England summer time, and with the extra one hour added it makes things fairly early - but anyhow, I was [by] a long way the first one up.
Annie, [and] I call her so - is full of life and fun, has taken complete charge of her uncle who does as she tells him. In fact Gordon said [that] he did not know how the Governor could get on were it not for Annie - who does all the housekeeping.
She took me to see the town in the morning - Cathedral and King John's Castle (5th Battalion National here et al).
After lunch he [Gordon?] and I motored out to Kilalon[?] - saw Loch Derg and went to a G********* Farm, by name [of] Going - M***** Lady (Miss Miles) was very nice.
In the evening called on someone else.
The drive through many provinces[?] was simply grand.
Weather fine but cold.


[note:] Charles Mackesy immigrated from Ireland, first to the USA then on to New Zealand. Charles married in the United States - then bringing his wife and three boys to settle in Whangarei (North Island).
23rd May
1919
Tralee
Bank house where Mickey Pearson was brought up
Friday.
The weather is cold and cloudy - stayed in all day writing letters.
At 1800 *****, having persuaded Elliot to come too - we took the Train for Tralee East, had several thousand pounds to take there and make this the opportunity.
He had advised the manager, a Mr Taylor, that we were coming - Taylor was at the Station to meet us and we stayed with him at the Bank House. Mrs Taylor had dinner waiting. It was 2200 before we got in. She is rather pleasant stout and short daughter of Sir W.Harrison of Cork. A governess Miss Legge was also pleasant, A Mr. O'Brien had been asked in - a dreadful talker.
I went to bed at 2425.
24th May
1919
Tralee
The day very fine - yesterday the **** main for ****.
Saturday.
A fire had been lit in my bedroom, and everything that they could think of was done to make me comfortable - Without the fire would have been better. Passed a good night.
Took the 0900 Train for Killarney arriving at 1000. Took a tour of the Lakes - two hours in a boat then walked eight miles there - down and back one and a half hours walking a tour of the [space left by Mackesy-see below Kerry Mountains] mountains. One peak of which is the highest in Ireland.
The Lakes and scenery were beautiful, reminded me both of Canada and New Zealand.
The Gap of Dunloe was very fine and five small lakes.
A nuisance were the women selling mountain dew on the road (Pot***). You must give them [a shilling?] to get out of there. Earl of Ken*****[name?] owns most of the property here - Kilaney has few[?] hotels other than for Priests and nuns.
Got back to the Hotel at 1700 - had to wait till 2100 [for the] Train - getting in at 2200, we had a late dinner - a [cop?] of Annie Taylor's came to met us.

Lough Gouragh & Lough Callee in the Kerry Mountains - the highest peak in Ireland being "Carrauntuohill"
25th May
1919
Rained all night
Rogation Sunday.
To the Presbyterian Church. A shrill voice in the next pew behind me dragging the Hymns spoiled things for me. Not much of a preacher.
There is a very nice park (private belongings to some Captain who allows the Towns people the fun of it for ten shillings a year) just at the side of the back farm, a grand place for children.
After church a walk through it.
After lunch a car jaunting took Mr and Mrs Taylor, Elliot and me out to "Arabela" - a farm belonging to the Peats.
Jessie met Mrs Peat when she was in Yonigal last year - They make seven hundred pound out of their orchard [each season?] - a lovely old place, but everything much neglected. The family are the Mother (seventy eight years old) a son and a daughter, they are some connection to the Melvilles.
The drive out and back was very delightful, the beautiful lanes are at their best now.
26th May
1919
Limerick
Monday.
We left Tralee with the 1035 getting back to Limerick at 1405. The country is very pretty.
Tired but much disturbed, Law lessons is the order of the day. We met a Lady on the Train who has four policemen living in her house for protection. Crimes all constantly committed, and the evil doers escape, there is no such thing as a healthy public opinion in this country. Everyone is afraid to give testimony against the lawless element.
I hope that after Peace is settled Ireland will be dealt with. What it wants is a strong impartial Government.
Probably a rebellion thoroughly stamped out would be the best remedy for the Country.
The Priesthood wants wiping out - But that will save us time.
To bed early.
Weather fine.

[Transcribers notes:] Charles Mackesy was understanding or perhaps had a nose for what was to come in his ancestral homeland. The dreaded "Black and Tans" were being recruited to face the problems he was witnessing:-
In 1919, the British government advertised for men who were willing to "face a rough and dangerous task". Many former British army soldiers had come back from Western Europe and did not find a land fit for heroes. They came back to unemployment and few firms needed men whose primary skill was fighting in war. Therefore, there were plenty of ex-servicemen who were willing to reply to the government’s advert. For many the sole attraction was not political or national pride – it was simply money. The men got paid ten shillings a day. They got three months training before being sent to Ireland. The first unit arrived in Ireland in March 1920.
Once in Ireland it quickly became apparent that there were not enough uniforms for all those who had joined up. Therefore they wore a mixture of uniforms – some military, some RIC. This mixture gave them the appearance of being in khaki and dark police uniform. As a result, these men got the nickname "Black and Tans", and it stuck. Some say that the nickname came from a pack of hunting hounds known as the 'Black and Tans'.
The Black and Tans did not act as a supplement to the RIC (Royal Irish Constabulary). Though some men were experienced in trench warfare, they lacked the self-discipline that would have been found in the Western Front. Many Black and Tan units all but terrorised local communities. Community policing was the preserve of the RIC. For the Black and Tans, their primary task was to make Ireland "hell for the rebels to live in". Over 8000 Black and Tans went to Ireland and while they found it difficult to cope with men who used classic guerrilla tactics against them, those who lived in areas where the Black and Tans were based, paid the price.

Historians agree this was another English political disaster as many Irish not initially interested in the IRA joined the revolts.
27th May
1919
Holyhead Hotel
Tuesday
A drive round the outskirts of Limerick showed it to have some fashionable suburbs with very fine residencies.
After that with Elliot [on] to inspect some Bacon Factories. Annie had been with me for the drive - Lunch at 1330.
At 1445 they saw me aboard the Train - The trip up to Dublin was most enjoyable, sun shinning all day. We got away from Kingston at 2000 - A most perfect sea - like glass.
We got in by 2300 and I put up at the Holyhead Hotel, where I spent a good night.
I had intended visiting Mt Terford but Mrs Mackesy wired that Barbra's husband was expected hourly to die - they had two nurses in the house.
So I decided to come on a day sooner. Alice Mul****[name] wanted to see me but instead I rang her up from Limerick and had a chat.
Met Lieutenant Park R.A.F. for whom I had got accommodation on our boat.
28th May
1919
Huyton
Wednesday.
After a refreshing sleep left Holyhead with the 0740 Train for Liverpool - arriving there 1230. Took the 4.30 for Huyton. Having met Jessie and Jeanie for afternoon Tea. I like Jeanie she is very Lady-like [which is?] common with all Alexander women. Has the feint of interrupting conversation, her hair is getting very grey, though she is only forty one years old - he is [her husband?] fifty-nine and looks very much younger. He has been doing munitions work, does not like living in England and still wants to go to the Colonies once the children are finished with schooling - I rather like him, a quiet sort of man.
We went to the Theatre in the evening seeing the "Admirable Crighton" - Very good. Late to bed.
Weather still fine.
Johnny Park whom I met yesterday in R.A.E. is off to Russia to fly there.
29th May
1919
Imperial Hotel -London
Thursday
Jeanie took me round to see a "will report", [of some?]private gardens, the owners had died and as the Lease has only nineteen years to run and the place costly to keep up as a tenant, [and] no tenant can be found. The old gardner has been retained and keeps the place very fine indeed.
It would take several thousand a year to keep the place up as it ought to be kept.
We all had afternoon Tea in Liverpool where they saw me off by the 1720 Train for Custau Station.
I got a promise from Jessie that she would would be a bit more careful of herself - she has continual blood pressure which might at any moment kill her or worse paralyze her for life.
She is something like the "other" Jessie in temperament, does too much and never spoils herself.
Reached London 2230 to the Imperial Hotel.
30th May
1919
Friday.
Met my old Adjutant J. Evans at Headquarters. He is now a Major and is to take a boat out to Suez about the 8th.
Chaytor had written over that I should be demobilised in England - no need [to] return to Egypt. Also that as I had left the E.E.F my rank of temporary Colonel was ceased.
This Godly, to whom it was put, did not allow the demobilisation ****.
Chaytor after all is the same un***** dirty dog.
Never doing an officer a kindness, but never overlooking the chance to do him down. What a difference it would have been made to the spirit and comfort of the E.E.F. had those two brothers not been in charge.
Saw Godly, [went] down with him to the War Office. [He] Thanked me for excellent!!!! work done. Would not forget to mention me et cetera - all wind.
Spent an hour with Aunt Louisa - she is better this week but wont go out yet.
31th May
1919
Saturday.
About Town, in the afternoon went to the City and Tower [of London] - crossed Tower Bridge et cetera.
The best time to see the city is of a Saturday afternoon when all the people are leaving - otherwise the place is too full for comfort.
Had a good walk round the Tower Gate - back over London Bridge.
Weather still very fine - quite warm now.
Met one of the four officers on leave in England since Friday - but now in Camp somewhere.
1st June
1919
After Ascension
Met the Bells at Baker Street Station and went to the Zoo, after which Maude went back while Ethel and I went into Richmond to see the Park.
I liked it the best of all - and signs very very old ****. While the Thames was simply covered with small boats. One of the finest views is said to be the one from the "Star and Gaiter Hotel" near the Hospital.
I saw several men with both feet gone - Some less arms, others with one leg off.
We went by underground and came back by bus. Houses all the way.
2nd June
1919
Monday.
I had been trying to find the "Wilds" and "Reeves", relatives. I thought they lived at Reading but had failed to trace them there.
So today I ran out to Ealing, but could only find one "Wild" in South Ealing - Not connected. So now I shall give it up.
I went out in Trains and buses and come back with the underground.
Had been asked to dinner with Colonel Studholme and had a hard time in finding his place - 5 Buckingham Street. He had given me a diagram but the diagram was wrong and the little street access very little known in the neighbourhood.
I met his brother who lives in England, and wife, and another officer and wife, a Lawyer from Wellington leaving for home on the 13th. Pleasant evening.
Weather warmer.
3rd June
1919
Tuesday.
To N.Z.R.C. and British Museum - Out to the Times Book Club in Bond Street to try and get something on Bolshevism to help me in lecturing on the subject.
Hard to find anything but stories of people who [either] win, captured or suspected of being Bolsheviks before they could leave Russia.
I ****[purchased?] "The Truth about Sula" a new book - [I] hope it turns out what I want.
4th June
1919
Wednesday
Took the 1057 Train from London Bridge to ST. Leonards on Sea. Got there at 1230.
Had wired the day before to Ellen Larry would it be convenient and got a reply, yes.
So they were expecting me.
Found Ellen very small, quite grey. The business woman I ***** was her sister Maggie, much younger and not so grey - but was more bright and talkative I should say. They have a nice house and full of boarders. But expect they may soon have to move the house having since bought it to by turning into flats.
Ellen took me round about to Hastings - Land is light - bur very ****** country.
But received ****** evening - after dinner left with the 7.50 pm Train - arrived back 1030.
5th June
1919
Thursday
To Headquarters where I was again examined by the victors as to any ailments traceable to the War - Quite fit - this says the Royal Academy.
Spent several hours there.
I see the Honours list in the "Times" that I had received a C.B.E. Commander of the Order of the British Empire I presume.
Strange how cold these Honours leave me. I have never, so far, felt the least bit of pride. Though naturally enough I am pleased to have them.
I also learn that Darcy Chaytor has the same thing, the only two of the N.Z.E.F.in England.
Sorry he got anything - I consider him essentially unworthy of any Honour.
6th June
1919
Friday
A lot of walking - Making up my mind to run over and see the British and French Battlefields and the Rhine - I got all the assistance from our people and a letter to the War Office which I took over myself and got a pass to Folkestone[?] and across.
My boat does not leave until the 23rd - so there will be some time [to fill in?].
I had Tea with Captain and Mrs Maxwell he was for eighteen months legal advisor to the N.Z.E.F.
In the evening went with Captain McKenzie, whom I had not seen since the Gallipoli days, to the Coliseum and saw a good show.
7th June
1919
Saturday
Got my ribbon C.B.E. and went to the Bells to have it hemmed on. It meant of course altering all the others as the C.B.E. follows the C.M.G. then the D.S.O.
Took Maud out to see "Blue Bells", quite good - though I thought some of the funny parts silly.
The weather is very hot for London at this time of year - Everyone asking for rain.
Went to look up the "Governors[?] Club" and the "Patriotic Ass". Found it in All Norwich General Building, Number two basement. Not very much of a place but may look in again with time if opportunity offers.
8th June
1919
Imperial
Whit Sunday.
To Windsor with Ethel, left by the 11.am. Very pleased to have seen it - No wonder that Royalty likes to live there. The view is simply charming. The long drive straight for [about?] a mile was of special interest.
Eton has the same Station as Windsor, new to me the Town is nice and clean.
Saint Georges Chapel very fine. A Band was playing at the East Turret of the Castle.
Back to London and [then] out to Hamstead Heath - this time with Maude. One of the girls must always stay with the mother.
Much astonished to find the heath all covered with bush, thousands of people on the parade, and a couple lying behind every bush. They lie out to enjoy themselves and don't mind making love in public.
Very warm weather.
9th June
1919
Train to Boulogne to Cologne.
Whitsun Monday
Bank Holiday.
Left by the 1255 for Folkstone, had been wrongly directed to Chairing Cross whereas the train started from Victoria, but made it in time.
Found the two girls being on the station to see me off. ***** on the Train - left Folkstone at 3.50pm, getting to Boulonge at 5.30pm.
Met Studholm on the boat [who was with] the Editor of the Christchurch paper, [his name was] Trigg.
At the Folkstone Hotel I also met Colonel Rhodes and his wife.
Studholm is on his way to Cologne and had come down in his car, and Rhodes will be using it to ****** tomorrow.
Met our ********** Major White[?] who got me a ticket to Cologne.
The crossing was most frightfully chilly after the heat of London - I was downright cold.
Captain Wick (W.Rg) [Wellington Regiment?] got my return ticket to Cologne [on a] Sleeper and arranged for me to come back, and he will ***** me over ****** ****.
Dined with Arthor and Mrs Rhodes and a Miss Hymes who is with them traveling together.
Train left at 2000.



Folkstone - Today.
10th June
1919
Officers Club - Cologne
Withsun Tuesday.
I found two United States Colonels in my carriage on the way to Poland and Russia.
(Food Continental) Had a quiet night - early morning I saw us passing through devastated districts. Had breakfast at the E.E.F. at Charleroy - passed Mons - Namour - Huy et cetera. Going through Belgium was very fine indeed. Had a carriage all by myself after Namour.
Hay making is [carried out] in the old style all along the line.
The valley of Meuse especially beautiful, great many coal mines and tremendous slag heaps. Very high chimneys over [the] whole Anses.
[Came to] The German frontier at 1310 at Herbesthal where a German Engine took the Train over.
Meeting a Major Lee on Indian civil accounts who is the C.of S.[Commander of Station?] to the O.C.R.E. Cologne, who afterwards showed me to the Officers Club. We stayed together - going to the Theatre (Express) and a ride on the Trains. All free to the A.o O. - rather good that.
Then walked across after dinner to the Hoffenz ****** bridge to Durtz - Cologne has changed wonderfully since I saw it [last?] - It has grown industriously new Town, very fine - a good place to stay at.

[Transcribers notes:] Charles Mackesy attended studies at an Agricultural University in Germany in the late nineteenth century (circa 1880) as a young man. Possibly Cologne was the seat of the university where he studied. Because of his education here Charles was a fluent German speaker.
11th June
1919

Officers Club - Cologne
Wednesday.
Walked about a great deal finding old recollections cropping up. But know no-one and recognise great changes, climbed the "Dome" for view - 575 steps - hard work - but worth it.
Met a Major Learhill who recognising my badge said he had crossed to England in a Hospital [ship?] with a Major Mackesy - that was Charlie of course. So I asked him out for the afternoon - he was waiting to go to England tomorrow.
We took the electric Train to Bonn.
Met P***** [name? or perhaps "Padre"?] who showed us round - took electric Train to Godasberg, climbed the old Castle and Tower - said to be one of the finest views on the Rhine. Had refreshments on top - full of people, all well dressed and in good condition - shops seem full of goods.
Last Train back to Coln [Köln] after a very long day. One feature very noticeable are the quantity of smoke stacks every where.


Kölner Dom today with its 575 steps.
[transcribers note:] Charles Mackesy's son was Major Charles Mackesy, N.A.M.R. who was hospitalised twice from Gallipoli.

12th June
1919
Officers Club - Cologne
Thursday
Stayed in late writing, sent away a lot of post cards then took the Train to [the] Zoo. I saw many animals - many having been done away with - I presume to save feed.
I find I have no right to stay more than two nights in the Club, but will have to put in tonight yet if a body comes for longer than their two nights he is found a billet - [I will] go on tomorrow at 0730 to Mainz, from there to Wiesbaden, will try to see Heidleburg and Whinhessen outside of O.E.T.
Went to the opera at night 5pm to 8.30pm. Grand house, in the intervals people promenade in Theatre Piece. "Marriage of Figaro" - not very [much] talking but good singing and ********.
13th June
1919

Palast Hotel
Wiesbaden
Friday.
Left Coln by the 0730 express. All the Station and the Train is packed.
A French Officer whom I had met in Egypt, Captain F. J. Widolff recognised me and was delighted [to see] me. Had to come to my Camp at S*****, he turned out useful.
Wilburg was reached sometime after 1100 there we got into electric Trains for Wiesbaden arriving about noon.
Put up [at the] Palast Hotel - one of the grandest places I was ever in, and cheap - eight Marks for room.
Walked about a lot.
Town one of the very best -190,000 ****[population?].
Nearly two hundred new millionaires in it. Great gardens. Heard splendid orchestra at Kiev garten.
At night went to the opera "Rhine Gold" - Wagner - disappointed in both music and play - scenery wonderful, rest no good for my taste.
Walked home, then bed.


Palast Hotel - circa 1899


Palast Hotel - 1945 - much bomb damage evident.



Palast Hotel - rebuilt today.
14th June
1919
Palast Hotel - Wiesbaden
Saturday.
To the Synagogue was the first place to go to after breakfast, which the latter was only bread and coffee - two eggs -[this] cost me six marks.
The Jewish church [has] one of the finest services on.
Then Pictchen Gallery and the Museum. Afterwards to Nerothal, then up the mountain by the cog railway - wonderful views of Wiesbaden and the Rhine plane on one side with the beautiful woods and valleys on the other.
At the Rur Garten again to listen to the fine orchestra.
First time thinking to send a Telegram.
The ****** have their ****** blocks away from the office - stupid.
Dinner then back to the Theatre, a really good play this time. Something to laugh at, a wonderful night, made Wiesbaden doubly pretty.
Paid the ***** at the bank.



Nerobergbahn Wiesbaden - the cog railway still runs today.
15th June
1919
Cologne Officers Club.
Trinity Sunday.
Got away from Wiesbaden by the 0800 Train - I was sorry to leave really should have stayed another day.
The ****** I liked they taste just like bouillon - the bath I had yesterday was also very pleasant and only a mark fifty. Strange things are so cheap, that is at the present value of the Mark [equals] sixpence.
My room had a telephone, three different electric lights, cupboard, sofa - its first floor very large and only cost eight mark per day. Meals also seemed cheap but sparse and plain and not much in them.
Mainz was left at 0925, and Cologne reached at 1330.
In the afternoon indulged the caretaker of the Museum to show me through the picture gallery part (not open nowdays), when finished four United States Officers desired to have the same privilege. But the official not speaking English I volunteered [to] go back with them. Spent most of the afternoon with them - walked the whole length of town - in [the] evening to Bayenthal getting back around 2330.
16th June
1919
Daun Eifel
Monday.
Left at 0715 with Major Sammons for Geraldstein where his car met us, [then it took] forty minutes to [drive] to his Headquarters at Daun. He is the O.C. [Officer Commanding] Civil Affairs. Sent a wire at once to Captain Wilk New Zealand Regiment [at] Wimereux saying I was delayed and would wire again. I had [previously] wired to say I was leaving Coln that morning for Boulogne - after lunch (******** at 1000) we drove in the car to Trenes, the old Imperial city of German Emperors.
Saw the Museum and the old library with the first edition of the Gutenberg Bible of 1450. Also the Codex Poospar [of] 719[AD] - [and the] Codex Aureus [of] 796[AD]. This was a work made by the sister of Charles the Great and presented[?] to some Monastery. The cover is full of precious stones, the writing wonderfully well done, Insured for two million marks.
We got back late and had a birthday party which lasted till 2400.


Gutenberg Bible of 1450


The Codex Aureus of Lorsch is an illuminated Gospel Book written between 778-820 AD.
17th June
1919
Daun Eifel - with Americans
Tuesday.
Not being able to reach Luxemburg and back in one day by Train, Major Lammond Ridley sent me off with a Major and Captain in the car.
We stopped at Saarburg where Major Rifyce was in charge. I had met him with Lammond in Cologne and went in his car to Luxemburg.
The driver was most delightful and [the trip took] something over four hours.
Town most interesting and picturesque, road and country lovely - scenery grand.
We had stopped at Treves for Lunch but I refused to stay for dinner [which would take us up to at least] until 2100 in Luxemburg, as I was anxious to get to Cologne as soon as possible.
Went through the Grand Ducal Palace, and to the Museum, but would much like to spend another day though if possible, and then go to Brussels.
We got back to Daun at 2000 and then spent two and a half hours chatting.
18th June
1919
On Train to Boulagne from Cologne
Wednesday.
The American Major and Captain [chose] to drive me to Cologne. They both wanted to see the city and this seemed a good opportunity.
The Major is in command *********, [and?] readily granted the request through [otherwise the] car could not have left his district.
I was up at 3am and woke the Major at 4.30, but we had to wait till 5.30 - thirty minutes late for the Captain. However it was a lovely spin, some 126 Kilometers we reached Coln in time to have breakfast, to send off wire, and catch my Train to Boulagne at 9.50am.
I promised the Americans to come back and put in a few days with them if I can miss my boat and extend my leave.
I saw a lot of the country towards ***ing[name?] and Belgium which I had missed on the way up.
19th June
1919
Folkestone Hotel
Boulogne
Thursday.
Arrived at Boulogne at 7.30 Having met the **** Trig on the Train Colonel Studholm and seeing him off at Duren. We had breakfast together, met Major Wilk at the boat pier.
Trig going off, while Wilk who had a car ready, took me to Ypres - Comeen - Messines and several other battle places and towns where the New Zealanders had been.
Armen Tiers where they had first come to was of specially interesting - Wonderful how completely the various towns and villagers were destroyed. Some places nothing but the cross-roads remained, nothing to indicate a building had been there.
The country we motored over had magnificent roads - with **** of **** got home fairly late.



Ypres during WWI



Ypres restored today - picture taken from the same spot as above.
20th June
1919
[transcribers comments: I am very pleased to see the interest the diary continues to generate - I must say a lot of things appear quaint in terminology and a viewpoint of ninety odd years ago - but since the last diary entry here we have had 75 hits reading - well not quite 75 because I have been here a couple of times to post different images to go with the entries - so 70 anyway - I find that rewarding that so many of you are coming back - thanks.]

20th June 1919
Imperial Hotel
Friday
Major Wick was to get me a permit to fly across the channel - but the trouble was to get a machine - many had gone homeward, the rest were standing by for the Peace terms especially tomorrow as [this is] the last day when the Germans must make up [their minds] to sign or not.
The Government declares they wont but I think they will have to.
In the meantime the weather got bad rain and fog - so the flying was out of the question.
I therefore left at 1.50pm on a very crowded boat. We were late in leaving Folkestone - Meeting [Miss] Jones on the boat, she had been at Wiesbaden. I looked after her luggage which caused us [to] miss [the] first Train.
Got [in] late to London and Hotel.
21st June
1919
Saturday.
To Headquarters - finding the "Guernsey"[?name of ship] had been deflected to go by the Cape. I cancelled my passage and shall go by a later one.
Designing if possible to lecture to [Conaway??name -maybe Galway?] - They are full of interest and I can live for less than half the price over there than here - I hope I can anyway.
It has stopped raining and hailing in London - the first wet day I had seen since my arrival.
Did a lot of running round and spent the evening with the Bells - Auntie is somewhat more cheerful, but being very spoiled by the girls and so selfish. I should say it will be a relief to the latter when she is called away.
22nd June
1919
Sunday
1 after Trinity
I changed my room [for] the second time,since my return both others [rooms] were too small and picky - have now a better one. I like the hot and cold water.
The deceitful Germans had sunk their fleet, which had been trusted over to the allies, in the Scots waters up North.
The Scheideman Government has fallen and a new cabinet has been brought into being. By the papers it looks as though it is nearly ready to sign a treaty - in the meantime our Troops are going forward and everything is in readiness to strike if need be.
Weather very cold.
I wonder what Cot**** will say to Germany re the sinking of ships.

[Transcribers note:] The Scheidman Government was a player in postwar Weimar Germany. The Versailles Treaty was fiercely resented by all German political factions, especially Article 231. Plus President Wilson's "14 points" created a tidal wave of anger. Politicians as different as Erzberger and Eisner were to find that swimming against the 'diktat' was useless. At the date above the SPD party of Scheideman's took a stance that there was "no alternative".
Previously on the 9th November 1918 – Berlin, Scheidemann had proclaimed a republic from the Reichstag, in order to forestall the later attempts by Marxist Spartakists to bolshevise [radicalize] the revolutionary situation that then existed (following the abdication of Kaiser). The Allies had wanted to deal with the SPD as of the political leaders in Germany at the time only Ebert and Scheideman were considered politically middle of the road representing the working class and more important, definitely not Communists, which was a great fear at the time. Lenin had recently grabbed Russia for the working classes.
Germany was at a crossroads: War weary and exhausted population. Blockade and Spanish Flu.
23rd June
1919
Monday.
In the morning [went] to headquarters to see about the **********. I find it will have to take place later than the 26th. So made a request to get back to Germany to study aforestation for a month ********* [,granted.?or to mean: this was granted?]
In afternoon [went] with Jones to Richmond Park, it rained while we were there - Saw Uncle Sam at night - they waited.
Best thing I had seen for a long time, Germany desired another extension of forty-eight hours, but extension refused *** [allies would not?] consider it.
It is expected that Germany will now agree to sign unconditionally.
The weather is beastly cold, something like winter. No sun to be seen, grey cloudy sky.
24th June
1919
Tuesday.
Mr Farnell, now a private in the N.Z.M.C. looked me up. I walked many miles with him about London streets having lunch in Soho where I had never been - Very good French restaurant and very cheap.
Hunted all over Town for June number of the "19th Century"[name of magazine?] to get an Bolshevik article - had to go to the publishers for it.
Called for Maude at her office at 2200 and had dinner where [we had previously] luncheoned - very good place, best I had struck so far.
German news says that they are ready to sign unconditionally.
Weather wet and bleak, abominably cold. [glass?] or two spirits. Met several wild officers. Gipsey *******[hospital?]
25th June
1919
Wednesday.
To Headquarters for my authority to go to Boulogne. They have given me one months leave till August 1st. May not stay so long, but if things remain as cheap as they were there last time - It will be a far better place to be in than London which is dreadfully dear.
Germans seem very wrathful that their representatives have arrived to sign unconditionally - They have burnt the flags taken from the French in 1870 which according to the Treaty [they] were to be returned to France. The chief man of the German delegates who were to sign has refused.
All seem afraid to tackle the Government and it will take an ultimatum from the ******** to force them to it I expect.
Walked the Parks, Kensington and Hyde.
Said good-bye to Auntie Louise - did not see the girls.



Treaty of Versailles negotiations - finally signed on the 28th June.

[Transcribers notes: Interesting to note some of the proposals added to the Treaty at this time as many countries scrambled for spoils of war - and in hindsight, because of their inclusion, plus the huge war costs Germany were asked to pay - led in a direct way to the rise of Hitler and the second world war - Here below are some excepts from "Section Fourteen" of the Versailles Treaty including the French Flags Mackesy mentions above:

The following miscellaneous clauses are indicative of the opportunity taken by the victors to leave no stone unturned in bringing home to Germany the extent of her defeat:

* Article. 131 Germany to restore to China (and bear all costs of reinstallation) all the astronomical instruments which her troops in 1900-01 [i.e., during the Boxer rebellion] carried away from China"

* Article. 245 Germany to restore to France "the trophies, archives, historic souvenirs or works of art carried away from France by the German authorities in the course of the war of 1870-71 and during this last war . . . particularly the French flags taken in the course of the war of 1870-71 . ."

* Article. 246 Germany to restore to (Saudi Arabia) "the original Koran of the Caliph Othman, which was removed from Medina by the Turkish authorities and is stated to have been presented to the ex-Emperor William II." Also, Germany to hand over to Great Britain "the skull of the Sultan Mkawa which was removed from the Protectorate of German East Africa and taken to Germany"

* Article. 247 Germany to furnish to the (Belgian) Univ. of Louvain manuscripts, early printed books (Incunabula), maps and objects "corresponding in number and value to those destroyed in the burning by Germany of the Library of Louvain."]
26th June
1919
On Boulogne Train to Cologne
Thursday
The weather has been frightfully cold, just like a downright winters day - No sun at all, darken sky.
Maude came to bring me some things and saw me off.
I left from Victoria by the 1255 Train. The crossing from Folkestone was very cold, but not as rough as I had anticipated. Major Wilkes met me. The wire sent to him yesterday only arrived at 1700 to day - just before I got in.
Stayed at the L***** Hotel until Train time 2215.
He found me the tickets. Have no return ticket to Folkestone, he is to get it for me tomorrow and forward it on to Cologne care of the Town Major.
A Peace celebrating torch light procession was held in Boulogne - a measly affair - got an apartment to myself again.
27th June
1919
H.Q. 4th Corps (General Sir A Godly)
Duren
Friday
Bad cold - wet day all through France and Belgium, got better nearing Germany. Passed the German Peace delegates who were on their way to sign the Peace Treaty at Paris - not far from Charees Le Roy - got off at Duren to report to General Sir A. Godly G.O.C. N.Z.E.F. - asked me to stay - lives in Millionaires house most gorgeous building with large grounds - but money sticking out vulgarly everywhere.
Godly looks older - Met Lieutenant Colonel Studholm and Chief Matron's Thurston, New Zealand, over from England, and also Mrs Reed, Matron in chief England - Army stationed Cologne - very nice, had a long walk with the Matrons. Major P******* [was also there] who had been on Godly's staff in France.
28th June
1919
Düren
Saturday
Saw the Paper Mill of Schepley Brothers, where paper clothes and boots are being made in the fore noon. It was most interesting, after lunch Lieutenant colonel Studholm took Major Prideau whom I had met on the Train [coming] up, and Captain Ogilvy one of the General's ADC's [and myself went] via Ebeningen and through Demez to Cologne. Where at 6pm one hundred and one guns were fired from the Rhine bank on the Cologne side as a salute for the Peace signed today in Paris.
After this [we went] to the Opera - saw the "Freischütz" - very good.
Then dinner at VI Corps Club. And back to Düren in the night arriving at 2330.
Cold wet weather just like winter.
29th June
1919
Sunday
2 after Trinity
General Godly did not get up for breakfast, [he] caught a chill yesterday, so went up to say good-bye as I did not intend returning from Cologne.
Major Prideau coming with me we left Düren at 1030 for Wermelskirchen [which had been] on the front line, to see General W. Braithwaite. He took us out after Lunch in his car to Solingen and Burg. The old home of the counts of Berg - a wonderful old castle - splendid paintings on the wall.
Country especially pretty.
People very friendly, all taking their hats off to us. Gone the little doldrums! the girls and boys look happy and content. No doubt they are great people - left there at five. I stayed here. Prideau going back to Düren.



Engelbert von Berg sits astride his horse outside present day Schloss Berg Köln (Castle Berg)

[Transcribers notes:]The Counts of Berg, originally from Cologne, had conquered this land to which they gave their name. The first castle must have looked downright modest. Only the Keep was constructed on a big, broad scale. It was living quarters and defense. But already, at that time, a wall surrounded the entire grounds, including the craftsman settlement, and served to its defense. Around 1150 Adolf Engelbert entered the Altenberg Monastery.
The municipality was established in 1374 and the town became famous for its sword-blades. There are numerous metal factories which turn out fine cutlery, copper and brass-ware, and surgical instruments, etc., while several thousand workmen make small articles of cutlery at home.
In addition, there are paper, linen, cotton, silk, soap and other factories. Solingen cutlery as been famous since medieval times and is supposed to have been introduced by crusaders from Damascus.
30th June
1919









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Daun
Monday
Left Cöln at 0720 arriving Geroldstein 1000.
The wire sent for me from Corps Headquarters Düren to Major Cammons had not arrived, so no car was waiting. I rang them up but as they had had a smash I had to wait till 12.30 before it arrived.
Spent the time with the Burgermeister and in climbing the old ruin.
The weather is like a very late Autumn, very cold indeed - feels like snowy.
Major glad to see me, they had orders to move to Wittlich because their police having been withdrawn to Coblenz. I saw them off. Then took a long walk with Major Brewster and spent a good pleasant evening with him at the Hotel.
Lots of rain.


Geroldstein - "Burg Gerolstein" the old ruin climbed by Mackesy