Update 1919


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The Diary of Lieutenant-Colonel Charles Mackesy 1919


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 July
Major Lammons arrived about 1030 and Major Brewster (Doctor) got the motorcar to drive over to Mayen, where he had left a tunic to be altered.
I went with him. We had a cold drive but over a very fine roads and through beautiful forest.
Mayen is occupied by many U.S. Troops - and a castle graces the hill. The cost not dear after filling up with benzene - the Americans call it "Gas" - we came back to Duan.
Frau Laudrathin where the officers use to be billeted asked us for afternoon Tea, we left a little after six for Wittlich where Lieutenant Colonel Savage expected me for dinner. We got in late at 2000 - he had waited.
Stayed at the Hotel Wills for the night.
Very cold wet weather.

Wittlich - Market day 1910.

Wittlich - Today. In this image we are looking across the road from the 1910 image - the corner of the side street at left has a Cafe. And across the road we can see that the old town clock has been removed from the face of the old building and now an impressive clock tower has been added in period style in the middle of the building.
2nd July

We were late starting back for Daun, where we arrived at 1000. After which I went with Doctor Major Brewster to witness[?] the Kreis Artst to get some vital statistics, he does not speak German. Found him a nice man. In fact all the people I meet are nice. It seems such a pity that we had such a terrible war. The public does not at all sympathise with the German High Command.
Afternoon we took a long walk through the woods - the weather has been so cold that I should not be astonished to find snow on the ground in the morning.
There are many people at the Hotel, mostly women, they spend their time religiously in walking about the beautiful woods every day.

3rd July
Took a long walk through the woods to some springs and then back to the Hotel by 1300.
Major Lammons was selling stuff by auction in the town.
Weather looks as though it might get better.
In the afternoon the U.S. Officers (There are four - Major Doctor Brewster, Major Lammons in charge - Captain Rungi who drives the cars [and] acts as interpreter, and Lieutenant Haig) went to several villages to sell stuff.
I went over to the Laudraths house to get information concerning forestry.
His wife speaks good English, the four officers arrived in time for dinner, when just about finished, the girl from the hotel came over to tell me a New Zealand officer and [his] sister had called to see me. It was Lieutenant Colonel Studholm with Chief Matron Thursten[name?] motoring up from Wiesbaden.
I took them back with me and we had a pleasant evening - then a bed at Schraumhaus.
4th July
Studholm and Matron left at 0900 for Düren, while we went off to Helesheim and some other places where sales had to be made.
Got back at 1300 - after that the four officers went back to Witlich, but I stayed on.
I am expecting some mail - Studholm tells me General Melville, General Officer Commanding N.Z.E.F. England, has been recalled to New Zealand.
Possibly Godly may consider me to carry on for him.
The weather is most strange, very cold and wet. Not sufficient rain to saturate the ground. The crops have suffered accordingly - oats are only six inches to a foot high, a complete failure for potatoes the staple crop - do not promise much - while the fruit crop, wheat et cetera are also far from what we could call satisfactory.
5th July
Yesterday Coblenz celebrated the 4th [of July U.S. Independence Day]. - Had I known about it sooner I should respectfully had him up and taken part in the nights historical event.
It will probably never happen again that U.S. soldiers as a garrison in Germany will celebrate their national day.
All Americans barring one Regiment are to be withdrawn - And they hope to have them out of the country very soon - [President] Wilson appears to be liked by no one - The Americans claim that a Republican Government is sure to follow him - He is spoken of as the greatest Egotist of the present day. France and Germany don't care for him. Lloyd George, the Germans say, has treated them best and they want to be friends with us.
6th July
3 after Trinity
The first good day I have experienced since I have been here - several U.S. soldiers arrived who had been billeted here - to see their friends again.
Forenoon I spent in the garden reading - Afternoon took a long walk, I had many conversations with people about the war, who was to blame and present conditions - Their view is of course so very different from ours, that it is hard to get them to look at things in a different light.
But several times I had been able to stagger them not a little. They have been most shamefully misled by their own people that their conceptions are altogether wrong.
But I find no spirit of great hostility in these parts - more one of resignation.
7th July

Called on the Oberforester in the morning and arranged to be taken through the Government woods and plantations, in the afternoon he called for me at 1400 with his buggy and we spent this day looking at the various plantations et cetera. It was most interesting. We did not get back till 1900. He took a gun and revolver with him as he said there was a gang of five men hiding in the woods who were up to mischief - discharged soldiers I presume.
Of course we had rain again. The old forester is a great admirer of the Kaisers and thinks [he] should come back, all would be well again with the country. A belief not shared by the bulk of his countrymen.

8th July
We had arranged to go to the Neroder Kopf should it be fine, we had ordered breakfast some what earlier - but it was rainy while we were at it. But decided to go anyhow.
We got there dry - a lonely old castle in a very fine beech forest, most of it volcanic stone like round Auckland.
Lay for two and a half hours sunning ourselves on a bit of grass with the most wonderful views. Then a very heavy thunderstorm coming up we thought it wiser to pullout. Lunch we had taken with us.
Got as far as Steinborn and the hotel there when it came down in torrents - much thunder and lightning - we had gone by way of Nehnbergen.
Left Steinborn in time to get home for dinner 2000.
Quite dry after a most rainy old tour.
Letters from London one from General Lovy[name?] who had seen my award at the High Commission.
9th July
I woke up with a lot of noise going on in the street, they were erecting booths for a market - the first since 1915. Any amount of cattle and pigs, these all very dear. And booths of all sorts of stuff for sale, the whole countryside was present.
From a cheap jack I bought some soap - said to take out all kinds os stains - and a small whistle at one of the stalls - for Melville.
The day was cold and raw, no rain and not as cold as it has been but disenjoyable - I don't think I shall stay much longer.
Letters must be waiting for me in Cologne.
Three persons are sick in [the] hotel. Better food than they are use to - don't get so much meat in the cities.
10th July

A walk in the woods till 1300, through most beautiful pine and beech forests.
Then the 1408 Train to Gillenfeld whence an hours walk took us to a very pretty lake - the largest one in the district - a pity the weather is so cold, raw and wet, this spoils everything. The 1730 Train brought us home again.
Trout for supper again and getting rather tired of this, they are very bland indeed - Trout but nothing to them, caught plentifully here about. Breakfast consists of coffee toast and butter, not too much of the latter, and an egg.
Dinner, soup, fish and meat and vegetables and something sweet - eating much the ******** quite efficient and good cooking.
The U.S. officers were here for the last time, they are finished with their work and ordered home.
The Major desires to visit England first.

Maar bei Gillenfeld
The volcanic lake at Gillenfeld

11th July
Practically rain all day - but managed two nice walks - in the evening I went over to the Kreis Artzts (Doctor) for one of the boarders who has taken ill, probably from eating too much of something the stomach did not agree with.
A very heavy downpour of rain has given the people all the water they wanted, and while the oats will not benefit anymore other crops most probably will.
I expect to leave here on monday after being here for two weeks, I have only had one fine day but have learnt a lot.
Peace has been ratified by Germany and now perhaps I can get into Heidelberg, *********heim[?] and Oberirch[?], the latter place to visit Finsteineck[?] whence I started for the U.S.A. in 1879.

[Transcribers note: Although Mackesy spells "Doctor" as "Artzts" it may well have been a popular spelling at the time, and his reference "Kreis" added at the front, may well have meant "District Doctor" - the terminology today in Germany for a G.P. is: "Praktischer Arzt"]
12th July
Out walking towards Meuron in the morning, then took the 1408 Train to [space left blank by Mackesy] from where an hours walking through grand woods brought us in view of the two unused castles of Manderscheit - these were upper and lower castles - in a wood between the borders,] the upper one was destroyed in the 12th Century. But dates from the 8th Century- rebuilt by the Arch Bishops of Trier - it was destroyed again by Melack in the 17th Century - both [castles] are very picturesque, the woods and walks delightful.
Had coffee at the lower castle then up to Manderscheit for dinner, catching the 2048 Train back to Daun from Pantenburg one hours walk from Manderscheit in a pouring rain.
Got back at 0130.

A view from the "Niederburg" where Mackesy had his coffee all those years ago in Mandersheid in the Eifel - in the distance the "Oberburg" (or upper castle.) Eifel is the volcanic region along the Rhine near the Dutch border.
13th July
Out in forenoon - [then] resting till 1700, went with some friends [to] Beigeordneter and Biesten pass Cobley.
I called by invitation on the Laudraths. He was ill in bed with influenza, but she was as charming as ever. Can never get enough of [information on] New Zealand - [she] looks up everything on the globe and on the atlas.
Spent an unpleasant walk back to [the] hotel in time for dinner - bad day again. Spent the rest of the evening with hotel guests and got ready to leave monday morning with the early train for Cöln - sorry my stay in Duan was accompanied throughout by cold and wet weather.
But Daun is undoubtedly a charming little town - the prettiest in the Eifel.
14th July
Hotel Dom
Early breakfast then off with the 0748 Train. Changed cars at Geroldstein and on to Cöln arriving 1200.
To Town Mayor where I found two letters, but none from either Studholm or Wilks - both of whom had promised to send me a pass from Boulongne to Folkestone.
I wrote Studholm.
Town Mayor gave me a billet in the Dom Hotel, best in town - good room.
Heavy rain.
Looked through many bookshops for a Bible, for [Miss] Emons (RC) [Roman Catholic], but could get none.
Called on the Clostumaus in Hindeuthel and I had dinner with them - spending a very pleasant evening.
Had to walk back to Dom Hotel most of the way.

The Dom Hotel today with the Dom köln in the background
15th July
Shopping Forenoon.
Met Miss Emons 1200 Train from Daun who chose some music for me for Jessie.
Took opportunity while passing Ordinance to get another pair of boots (31/6) [One pound eleven schillings and sixpence] which would have cost me ₤4 [Four Pounds sterling] or more in London. Also Cap. Collars shirt and gloves.
Forenoon fine, later rain.
In the evening went to the Nickonilda Theatre which use to be Cölner Heineschau when I was here before.
All Cologne plot deutsche [local play in German] - I don't believe I ever laughed so much - fairly hurt me.
Later met Major Lammons, the U.S. officers had been so kind to me at Daun. He was off to England via Brussels. Would have [been nice to go with him] but could not. Saw him off at 2330.
16th July

Off to Godisburg[?] nice electrical [Train] and walked back from Stees[?] to Dom through the woods, having a snack a mile or two out from Dom where there was a magnificent view of the Siebrugeburen[??] - back to Cologne by 1800.
Dinner at Lindauthal, later back to the Hotel - where I found a note from Colonel *****[name?] late in command of the ****hustone[name?] Camp. He wants me to come down to Wiesbaden with him.
He called twice, is staying with Godly I believe in Duren.
Weather turning out better.

17th July
Hotel Dom
Spent over an hour trying to get either Adams or Studholm on the Telephone. Then sent a wire, but thought better afterwards to go down to
Duren by [the] 1325 Train. Got there before the wire reached Adams. Found him and took him back to Cologne with me - borrowing Studholm's car and driver. We returned coming through to Wiesbaden tomorrow.
Adams came by way of the U.S.A. where he spent two and a half months, has his wife in London.
We wired Major Wilkie to meet us with car in Brussels on Tuesday - will tour the Battlefields - leaving probably Thursday for England.
This cuts me a little short, but I prefer going with the company and the advantage of a car.
Got Adams put up at the Dom.
18th July
Hotel Rose.
Had to loose something to find the [space for] extra stuff I had brought ****.
I thought the best thing would be a rucksack, which may come in handy later (40 walk). Left Cologne about 1000 - getting to Goblenz about 1300 - had punctured.
Invited[?] U.S.A. Commissioner who referred me to Sir E. Stuart the British are not ********. [Will] see him on monday next on the way back.
Dinner at Coblenz, two more punctures on way to Mainz - then to Wiesbaden where we put up at Hotel Rose - The Palast Hotel being full.
Weather turned and warm sun shinning.
******* looked in ***** Chrystal Palast and ********, bathroom et cetera with bedrooms - good. [comments about hotel room].
19th July
We motored over [to] Nero Berg to the old Hunting Castle of the Grand Dikes of Nassau. Schloss Platte. Not much to see the place was started 1800 and finished 1826 whence till '66 it was used every year for six weeks to two months. No modern conveniences such as water and lights. Grand view of Wiesbaden but too far away.
On the Langten schwalbach for lunch - good.
Several[?] officers invited us [to] the sports on the morrow. If we can get pass through neutral territory to **** we shall go.
Back to wiesbaden by another road, very beautiful drive. Glorious day - and shopping.
Spent evening at **** at Ruhr Saal - great crush of people there.
French not liked. Too much after the women.
20th July
Coblenzer Hoff (Hotel)
5 after Trinity
Rained heavy during the night and early morning.
Left for Langen Schwalbach after having obtained permission to travel to Coblenz on the right side of the Rhine -Went through the neutral zone between French and U.S. O.T. [Occupied Territory] at Lagen Schwalbach - was a large Algerian Fehi on to which the Colonel L/C. [Lieutenant Colonel?] had invited us - we had good seats - every need ********** with a nice French Lady, introduced to a General.
Left about 1700 - Escorts on horse back, rather poor.
The road led us through Nassau and Ems and was very beautiful, at this latter place we stopped - I looking up Grace Von Olbermann, she is the richest woman in Cöln. But found she was ill in bed.
Lovely hotel and scenery - arrived in Coblenz in time for dinner.
21st July
On the Train Cologne to Bruxelles
Interviewed [by] Sir Harold S*****[Sleusort?] High Commissioner- "International Rhine Land C**** (England).
I may possibly get an appointment on account of my knowledge of Railway and Friends - he will let me know by the 18th August.
Reached Cöln in time for dinner - made up my mind to leave by 2330 express Brussels - got sleeping bunks, not too hot.
At Station met Paul Ryon with whom I had talked to at Duren before.
The afternoon was spent shopping - bought camera et cetera - then went to ****** that and spent the coming [wait] at Clostermans till time to catch the Train.
My companion though very wealthy is not a spender which is a good thing and I appreciate - He is always late, likes his bed. Would not have served well in the field. Know the song of the soup.
****** otherwise a very good walk.

Cologne Deutz railway station c1920
22nd July
Palace Hotel
Arrived here about 0700 and went to the palace Hotel, considered one of the best in Europe. Certainly fine rooms with bathroom attached. All rooms have communicating doors. Never been in a place more given to Loos living.
Women in plenty.
Rooms fifteen Francs, everything dear.
The rain came down steadily - this was Belgium's day of Victory.
I got a place near the King at the Saluting base and saw everything exceptionally well.
Foch and Badring Generals were there. A very fine march past.
The rain spoiled things.
Saw General Sir A. Godley who had driven over from Duren.
In the evening had dinner at a restaurant and with a Major and his wife (?). Went to an exceptionally good mixed pageant at the Pali d'Ele.

Albert I King of the Belgiums

King Albert and Queen Elizabeth returning to Brussels at wars end.

[transcribers notes: Albert commanded the Belgian army throughout the war, despite constant requests from the French and British to hand it over to them. He paid regular visits to the front line, and was closer to the ordinary soldier than any of the other commanders-in-chief. In return, he was held in great regard. His wife worked tirelessly as a nurse.]
23rd July
Hotel Royal
Leaving Colonel Adams in bed I motored all over, seeing museums and churches et cetera. Took a guide with me in the car.
At 1130 we left en route for Lille stopping for lunch at a place called Niedersbrachel. Very hard to get anything in the Town, the place we finally got to had been the British Chateau.
[Here?] Mother and daughter did us well, very anxious for us to spend the night, it being steadily wet.
We pulled out however and had a puncture and broke a spring - the road being so very bad and full of holes, at 1600 we stopped at a Smithy but could not effect repairs.
The wife giving us coffee, and we warmed up at her stove - [they] would not charge.
Arrived Lille by 1700 - went to Palals du Ele - poor show compared to last nights.
Stayed at the Royal - good but under paid staff - they need [the] stick.

24th July


Hotel Skindles
Morning promised better - but when we had sunshine the weather was very cold.
Took many snaps in the battle area of the 2nd Army where our boys fought.
Passed through Holeystret - Paschendale - Armentiers - Ypres et cetera arriving at Poporinghe about 1800.
This place has not suffered much, only a few houses destroyed. The Germans were only here for ten weeks in 1914. Whereas of Massine where we stopped for lunch, and which place was a large town with tramway and fine buildings - Not one single solitary house remains.
Utterly impossible to believe in such destruction until actually seen.
We hope to sleep in London.

25th July


Imperial Hotel
Put in a good night - the arrangement as to bedrooms being rather off. The room next to me had only an entrance through mine. It had a single bed while mine had two.
Large garden at back of hotelbut stagnant water. Very cold and some rain.
Got into Wimereaux (Boulogne Headquarters) in time for lunch with Wilkes - left Boulogne at 1700 reaching London 0930.
Came back to the Imperial because my luggage is here, but shall not stay beyond Sunday at latest.
Miserable pokey room. Bad attendance and exorbitant place.
Weather cold and rainy the same as we left behind.

Wimereux where New Zealanders were based during WWI (also spelt Wimereaux)

Monument aux morts - Wimereux
A ses glorieux enfants morts pour la France
War Memorial at Wimereaux also honours those who lost their lives in 1939-45 and Algeria.

26th July
Imperial Hotel
Busy all forenoon - went to see High Commissioner but he seems always to be away.
General Johnston in command at Headquarters - out of town. But found lots mail awaiting me - most of it dated January, the latest was early March.
All most all Troops have left Egypt for home.
General Chaytor is embarking for England [in] ten days - no further news.
Drove out to Richmond [on a bus]. I like these longer runs, they are cheap and enjoyable - But so far have not been able to get a plan or guide, these use to be plenty formerly.
27th July
Imperial Hotel
Russell Square
6 after Trinity.
Stayed in the forenoon. packing up as intend leaving here tomorrow.
After 2pm got on a bus to Golders Green, from there to St. Albans and attended service in the Abbey Church - wonderfully nice old building, good singing - choir in attendance, but preacher as usual very poor.
The ride was horribly cold, rain threatening all the time.
Crops are very backward.
Came back on the Midland Railway getting in at 9pm too late for dinner as the employees had taken their chances and cleared the tables as soon as possible. So I had to go out again.
Met Maude's friend Miss Gopsill, English young person. She found a four-leafed clover while with me.

Cathedral and Abbey Church of Saint Albans.
28th July
Governor Hotel
Waited over an hour for Major Harvey to turn up at New Zealand H.Q.
He was to arrange for my investiture for Saturday next, and also make an appointment with High Commissioner for me, but failed in the latter.
McKenzie on sick leave again - it appears to be a continuous holiday for him. However will see the ***.[abbreviation - perhaps Gen for General]
Had a new pair of boots rubberised, we hear not of these things in New Zealand.
Cold and dreary weather.
McKnordes[?], Private Secretary of the High Commission, sent me to Major Morton, Colonial Office - who could not tell me where to apply - but certainly the Colonial Office had nothing whatever to do with the Rhineland Commission. Will have to look up the War Office.
29th July
Busy till late trying to run down the proper person to apply to for a post at the British Section of the Inter-Allied Rhine Land Commission.
At last found out that it was being appointed from Paris. But a Lieutenant Colonel Strickers or some such name, who had something to do with it happened to be in London and I was fortunate enough to see him down at the War Office. He took my name down and promised to forward it with two other ones for consideration.
Legal knowledge would I believe be a help but can hardly be a factor - However I hope I hear something to my advantage soon.

[Transcribers note: Between 1906 and its abolition in 1964, the War Office was based in a massive neo-Baroque building, completed in 1906, located on Horse Guards Avenue in Whitehall, London. It contains about a thousand rooms across seven floors, linked by 2½ miles of corridors. The construction of the War Office building took five years to complete at what was then a huge cost of over £1.2 million.
30th July
Called into Edgewan Road this afternoon.
Was passing Marble Arch and thought I would like to see if Hardings were still to be found. I had been with them for some time in 1903.
A Government shop where I stopped for some things gave me the information - I found them still at fifty-five - old lady and two daughters - the third was still on leave. She is a W.A.A.C. Officer - they offered me a room, and I think I may go there. Certainly think it would be wise to leave my things there.
Walking hence through the Parks.
Find several New Zealand nurses still in London.
General Chaytor expected over end of this week.
General Braithwaite staying here at the Hotel Gr*******.
31st July
Got a note from Sister Maysie McDonell through one of our men, so ran out to Lunns[?] Gate Terraces 13 to see her after ringing her up on [the] phone.
Found Major Ferguson with her, I hear they are to marry soon - Spent an hour or two going down town - learning Marlane was in London and wanted dearly to sail for India shortly, and decided to look her up tomorrow.
I am writing her in the meantime to expect us between ten and eleven tomorrow.
Spent some time at the Contraband Department of the Foreign Office where I called on E. Leslie Esquire, who is in charge and has something to do with the appointments in the Rhineland Commission. But he is leaving his post. Asked for a written slip, which he would hand to his successor.
1st Aug

Called for Maysie McDonald at 0930, found her not quite ready - however we found Marlane - now Mrs Hollings - at Friesbury Park.
Ecelstone house - she was very pleased indeed to see us. Her husband had to be off early to look after some business connected with their sailing - they sail today week for India where he (a Captain during the war) is head of the Telegraph department Bombay.
Marlane came with us for lunch - she looks well, hope she may find her new home to her liking.
To Headquarters, then some purchases.
Out to Aunts to go with Ethel and a friend of hers to the Opera. This friend a Miss (space left by Mackesy) had asked me to go with them. I found her nice and chatty - 27 - well educated and bright. The piece was "Boheme".
Had to walk home, too late for buses, getting in 2345.

2nd August

Maude was down at the Hotel bright and early - took breakfast with me so as to be in plenty of time to go with me to the investiture.
Ethel had to go and see an eyespecialist with whom she had made an appointment and turned up at the Palace.
I had a long wait.
The King was gracious.
He said: "The next time Colonel Mackesy it will have to be a K.C.B.!"
May it come off!.
The girls went their way to catch the 2.30 Train for their Holidays.
I caught the 2.20pm from Euston to Liverpool.
Margaret met me at Huyton. Her mother and father were at the house - the day was raw and cold - had been raining in the morning. The opposite to Liverpool and London the weather was hot and sultry.
Four hundred odd Policemen on strike at Liverpool were dismissed.
A Warship and Crusier ordered to Liverpool, four Tanks around the Town Hall - Rioting.

George V (George Frederick Ernest Albert; 3 June 1865 - 20 January 1936) was the first British monarch belonging to the House of Windsor, as a result of his creating it from the British branch of the House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.

3rd August

7 after Trinity
Went with Jeanie in the car to fetch Jessie home from the nursing home in Liverpool where she had been operated upon.
The day cold and gloomy.
Jessie looked better than I expected and is doing well.
Stayed in the rest of the day.
I like Jeanie - real practical and thrifty hard working woman.
Liverpool had great trouble, Police on strike, stores were looted last night. Troops called out, and fired over the mob - Riot Act read et cetera.
It shows there is not much between law or war and mob rule.
The Police are of course all dismissed, nothing else could be incorporated. I hope this God remains firm.
Strike promises to spread and revelution is in the air all over the world.
Nasty open letters [attack] Prince Henry of Prussia to King George.

4th August

Bank Holiday.
A very wet and cold day in Huyton. Just like a bad winters day with us[in New Zealand].
I did not leave the house except for a ten minute walk around the garden about sundown.
The Vayhats had asked a certain Colonel [space left blank by Mackesy] to come in with his wife ansd spend the evening.
They stayed until 2330.
Jessie is improving rapidly and thinks of being able to go to Buxton at the end of the week.
The Liverpool things are quieting down down. Three hundred and fifty arrests had been made and the penalties handed out - more than £20 and six months in the lock up.
[Will] do them good.

[Transcribers notes: There had been many riots during 1919, including instances referred to as the "1919 Race Riots" - which had started in Liverpool on the 5th June which were also taking place. Not only were there many race riots in England there were many also across the USA and were known as the "Red Summer of 1919".
However the Riots in August were probably communist led - Interestingly the strike referred to above was in support of the Police being on strike over an ability to unionise.
From the Liverpool Post:
The absence of police on duty resulted in what the Post (4 August) described as 'an orgy of looting and rioting' over the August Bank Holiday weekend. One rioter was shot. He later died in hospital. Baton charge after baton charge was made in an attempt to end the disturbances, and the dock gates were set on fire. The London Road-Scotland Road area became a 'war zone'. The Riot Act was read and according to one account the shops and pubs were plundered to the tune of £150,000.]

5th August

5th August
Governor Hotel
Stayed with Vybaits till the 4.25pm Train for Liverpool. Jeannie came as far as the station while he came from the hospital.
I catching the 5.24pm for London. We had time to have a look at the Troops camped round the town. [They] Had four tanks with armoured cars and many [Transports] to take the Troops around the Town in a hurry - It was a sight I hope I shall not have to see again - bad enough to have to fight foreign foes - Got into London by 9.45pm and had to pay 5/- [Five shillings] to get a Taxi to the Governor at Victoria.
The proper fare is 2/2 [Two and tuppence] - but usually you pay what they ask you [or you] get no Taxi.

6th August

Headquarters for mail - met Captain Manners, wrote him out a certificate - he apologizing to be put on the N.Z.S.C..
***** up a tailor he recommended could not locate him.
Hear General Chaytor arrived on Sunday - Will notify what boat I go home with after having waited to the 15th as I promised Sir A. Stuart at Coblenz.
Had Marlane (Mrs Hollings) for lunch. Took her up to Richmond - the day exceptionally fine - brought her back in time for dinner given to her husband by the family - they leave on friday.
Met him - like him - nice fellow.

7th August
Met General Chaytor at New Zealand Headquarters - looking well. Said he had all his kit stolen in Egypt, even his sword.
Intends going over to Germany for a few days.
I Had myself measured for two suits - blue and grey - £19.19.6 [Nineteen pounds,nineteen and sixpence] - terrible prices.
Strikes are being overcome, railway men returning to work.
Police who went on strike are sacked for good.
Weather good, and England lovely. Took bus out to to Saint Albans and had dinner out there, coming in late Train.
No news.
Several letters from Germany - I shall not be able to keep up my correspondence.
8th August

Met Captain Stuart at New Zealand Headquarters who came over with Chaytor - he tells me they leave for the Rhineland and Flanders on Friday next, and expect to return to New Zealand early September.
Had my first try on of [suit] cloth, and next on wednesday.
Learnt that Reverend Guy Stormtier is assisting Reverend F. E. Myers at Christchurch Westminster - shall look him up later.
Took a time out to St. Albans - lovely country - staying to have dinner and return back with the last Train. Strikes collapsing - but profiteering terrible - Government proposes to take it in hand.
Perfect weather - England very lovely just now.

9th August

Left with the early Train 0955 for Staines from Waterloo Station - Staines is a summer resort on the Thames, many houseboats beautifully got up with very nice built bungalows with good camps upon the banks.
People bathing and boating, lovely weather.
From Staines the boats [move up river as far as] Windsor. It was something like one and a half hours run - most picturesque, we went through two locks. Passed Runnymede and Magna Carta Island - still having its old Roman house and some ruins of the Abbey left.
At Windsor went through the stock rooms in the palace. Walked out three miles to George III statue.
After dinner back to London by Train.
Found wire from Melvilles to come [up to] Basingstoke tomorrow.
Shall go.
Weather perfect.

Holiday makers waiting trains at Waterloo Station - circa 1920.

10th August

Sunday 8 after Trinity
Left waterloo at nine arriving at Basingstoke something after eleven. They did not expect the Train to be so early so [they] had not come to the station.
Elliot and Annie both looking well. He is sixty three I believe. Gordon and Felicity also well. They had ******** of the children done at £10 each - very fine indeed. Played and romped with youngsters Nona and Jimmy, her birthday on Tuesday she will be nine. Jim a bit troublesome. Nat so nice as he might be, is six.
Gordon took his father and we went in the tractor through country lanes and roads - lovely drive.
Everybody slept for an hour after lunch.
Weather hot, grass drying up, but a great relief and change after rising hot London.
Late to bed.

11th August

Out with Gordon in the car. He showed me some of the ground he has to shoot over.
He and two other keep a man and rear birds. This on a farm of a Mr Thiel, who's daughters run the place - He a millionaire perhaps. Director of P&O bought it for him.
She looks like any common farmers daughter while her sisters are society ladies. And this one could not be interested to attend a ball.
[What] Strange differences in families.

12th August

Took Train to Walton but not liking it went on, winding up finally at St Albans. Taking a very long walk...country beautiful - harvest now in full swing - glorious work over here. Wonder where the next full moon will find me - probably at sea. As I haven't heard nothing from the W.O.[Warrant Officer] yet with regard to Germany.
Shall apply for the next boat after the 15th instant.
Weather bad.
Twelve collapse in London today.

13th August

Had my clothes tried, they now want £36.4.6 a terribly high price compared to the first prices.
Left Town for Seven Oaks by the 3.45. I found it one of the very nicest places visited yet, twenty two miles out. An old quaint Town - with church and stables et cetera [right down to] the water.
Holer Park was especially pretty, extrudes I believe for miles, and is full of tame deer - we must have seen several hundred anyway.
Came back with the 930 Train.
I had called to see Chaytor in the morning, who leaves for France on Friday - but failed - He never being an exact man did not turn up at the office as arranged.
Fifteen deaths by heat in London.
Mr. Gospiel [ref.name]

14th August

Rayne - Sussex
Up Town to buy a suitcase and send to my Tailor to pack clothes up in - then 1200 Train to Rayne where the Bell's are holiday making - changed at Bishop Stratford - Hampton[?] with a stop. [They are] Staying at small farm house and are really well cared for.
Weather looking better.
But a relief to the girls once she is dead [referring to the ill aunt].
Took girls out to the Lay-by thing **** where spent late afternoon watching tennis and talking to everybody.
Crumbling of [Labour force?] and scarcity of Army.
I wonder what the outcome will be. Shall we have great labour troubles in New Zealand also? - I hope not.
Early to bed.

Rayne Railway Station today.
The foreground shows a grass verge where once the track for the Great Eastern Railroad was laid. The platform vacant of passengers since closing in 1952.
The line was originally opened in 1869

15th August

Grosvenor Hotel
Rode six miles before breakfast.
Left Rayne with the 1150 Train.
E & M going with me as far as Broadminster, there was no changing this time.[Trains]
Maude much disappointed at my not staying longer.
They come back Saturday week, after having had a three weeks away[?].
E will have to find a new situation as she gave up her last man before taking her holiday - a pig of a man, whom she should have left long ago - she suitored by him seven years. Never [allowed her freedoms?] left him because again he refused her a holiday - too many things.
Did shopping then took the Train to Seven Oaks - coming back after dinner - lovely country.

16th August

Took the 1000 Train from Charring Cross to Tumbridge Wells. After looking about a good bit went on with a [some sort of vehicle] for fifteen miles into Sussex. The country is very fine, a pleasure to the eye which ever way you turn.
Holiday makers every where. Many are complaining of the heat.
Much interested in tall tower like structures with the tops open to the wind. I was informed they were hop curing silos and where ever seen I supposed[?] this was for Hop Whiskey - the fluids of the bitter promise a good yield this year.
Frank was delayed so did not get here till 2300.
Very pleasant outing.

17th August

9 after Trinity.
Spent the later forenoon in Hyde Park, had been told several times to go there on a Sunday and see the crowds after church.
Took lunch at Kensington Gardens.
M.C. in the afternoon, bus to Richmond Park. It is one of the favoured resorts of Londoners on Sundays and the crowds have to be seen before one can realise what they are. The queue waiting for the bus was immense and would take hours to work off. So I tried the underground - the crush was equal.
Crammed in on the other proper railway line to Waterloo Station, and the Train was packed, not another person could have got on.
Had my new (civy) clothes on, this is the first time in five years that I am in mufti.

18th August

Shopping - looked up the price for miniature medals, find they are shockingly dear. But think I had better get them: L.G. the honours given by the King - C.M.G. C.B.E. D.S.O. the other medals will only be a few shillings. But these people who make them simply charge exorbitant prices for as much, if not more I should say, than the actual larger medals cost.
Took the bus out to Epping Forest. Not much of a ride - nearly all the way through dirty streets - the beginning of the forest which I saw was very poorly kept, not nice at all like the other parks seen.
Autumn appears to be coming quickly judging by the falling leaves - the days too are drawing in unbelievably quickly.
Arranged to leave by the S. S. Remuera on the 12th September direct to Auckland.

19th August

About Town, visited Greg's Inn and Limerolus Inn, the Law Courts and several other sites. The day was windy and cloudy, but in the city very hot. Looks as though the weather is going to break. I cannot get used to the terrible huge charges for everything. The prices are in my estimate terrible exorbitant. Everyone is on the take, want to get rich quickly seems to be the general design, but the money is spent [as quickly].
The Government still squandering it at the rate of £4,000,000 per day. The outlook for the country is bad. London has over three million guests, it is wonderful how they are all fed.
Sat in the Lord Chief Justice's chair and Sir Edward Casson's at the Law Courts.
Saw "Tilly of Bloomsbury" at the Apollo Theatre.
Supper at the Tra****. M.G.

20th August


A very hot day - Rained all morning. Did up my ribbons. L.E. Turned them and saved them together - rather a good job.
Very sore throat - sitting in a draught during the time between the acts at the Theatre last night.
Went for glasses to 68 Upper Gloucester Place where I had a long talk with Jennie Lee a famous actor of many years ago in Australia. She occupies the flat below the Bells, and lives quite alone, having lost her husband, daughters and sons. The latter killed during the late war.
London is very gloomy and nasty on these cloudy wet days - I wish my boat sailed right away, quick - not much pleasure to stay any longer.
The [cost] of living here is very great indeed. Money is wasted every where.
Invited [to] spend week end at Basingstoke, but told them I should have to come down later.
Have had my mustache cut off. Like the usual style

[Transcribers note: Distinguished Service Order Medal (at Left)
Instituted in 1886 by Queen Victoria, the Royal Warrant being published on 9 November. It usually goes to officers ranked Major (or its equivalent) or higher, but is sometimes awarded to especially valorous junior officers. 8,981 DSO's were awarded during World War I, each award being announced in the London Gazette.

21st August
Called on a Mr Gopsill of the Food Control Department. Who took me over the whole of the new L.C.C. buildings which is being erected at a cost of many millions of pounds. There we had lunch somewhere in the basement where daily over three thousand employees are catered for.
After dinner we did the Westminster Abbey most thoroughly - showing the coronation statue and giving Daniel's prophecy re: 5th (stone) [Kingdom] was the principle [ercut?].
Much unrest in the labour world. The Ministry and Transport workers threaten another strike - it is such a pity - the country has already lost its export it had with coal to Scandinavia.
U.S. stepping in and supplying.
22nd August

In the evening went to the Convent Garden Opera House to hear and see “With Allenby in Palestine”.
To my astonishment a large picture of me – Colonel Mackesy was thrown on the screen, while the lecturer Mr. Lowell Thompson [Lowell Thomas] mentioned having met this Colonel at Hebron and that he had told him that Allenby would take Jerusalem and that as the British are the old Israelites it would just be a homecoming to the [promised] land – etc etc.  This was all he had to say about New Zealand, the rest was all Australia and England – I went to see him after the lecture.  He remembered me well and promised to join me [in] an hours talk anytime I wanted him.
Australia and the U.S. had already approached his management to come to their countries.
This must not do for New Zealand.  I shall see to that.

23rd August

Saturday forenoon was spent inspecting the houses of Parliament. John Burrowes[?] was taking a large party of U.S. officers through. The building appears to us to be too small for the use it is put to - The large paintings pleased me again as of [last] year.
The Hall is being renovated by having several tons of steel girders put into the roof to strengthen it. And the whole inside is one network of steel scaffolding.
I got a piece of [wood] of the worn eastern oak beams which are being replaced by steel and which were put into the building centuries ago.
Took the Train to Basingstoke to spend the weekend with the Melvilles.

24th August

10 after Trinity.
Went to St. Mary's - the church where Gordon is warden.
A poor preacher I thought, gave one nothing to carry away with - Day wet and gloomy.
[Cleric] Sir J. Nash came over and played tennis with Gordon. Elliot, Nina and I went out for a walk, otherwise this day was spent quietly.
The two children are being rather spoiled - the boy is very babyish and crying on the least provocation. He is noisy at times and is not being checked by his parents.
Annie would do a great deal of good when she is in charge, as she[Nina?] and Elliot are leaving here next Friday for a few days in London, then back to Limerick.

25th August

Out in the car before breakfast, afterwards Gordon drove me down to Winchester with Mr Liddel, with whom he was playing off a match of croquet.
Elliot went down by Train. He and I after lunch saw the cathedral - St Cross where old pensioners are kept, the college and the old [half?] belongings to the old Royal Castle destroyed by Cromwell.
Winchester was King Arthur's capital - his round table is still being shown, it hangs up on the south wall. It is eighteen feet across and two and three quarters inches thick - I think it is oak timber.
Also viewed some old armour et cetera - old town [gone?].
Home by 5pm Train. Slightly wet day.

26th August

Left Basingstoke with the fast express at 9.40am, one hour to Waterloo Station.
Then made arrangements to get a typewriter and a room in our rear office at Headquarters. And got a stenographer Miss B. Gopsill - to begin work tomorrow for me.
I intend to have several lectures to expand - as with the Mounted men or Brigade in Egypt, Gallipoli and Sinai Campaigns, Palestine and my work as Governor East of Jordan - the reasons for the unrest and uprising in Egypt - My return to Egypt with a party of refugees via the Sudan and Red Sea et cetera.

27th August

Got things fairly well together and made a start, and will work in the afternoons on the presentations of lectures.
After spending an hour At [Madame] Tussards to see some new figures, went to 68 Upper Gloucester Street. Found Maude quite recovered. She had sprained her ankle at tennis, and Ethel away on a visit to a Mrs Proctor - she has found a new situation with a motor company, as company
secretary to the manager I believe. Beginning with five pound a week.
Weather cloudy all day - some spots of rain.
I hear there is no chance at present for me on the Governors Commission - Got others cheaper I presume.

28th August

Busy at the office all day - But won't be able to stay too noisy and too smelly.
No key so that I came back into Town for a look around to carry all books and papers back and forth. Will have to look out for some lecture place.
Went to see "Abraham Lives by"[?] a play at the Hyice Theatre at Hammersmith. Never that pleased. The course of the [play] is wonderfully well brought out - as is the old Albi character. To where it seemed the best thing I had seen staged in London - thought the staging itself with the scenery displayed, was very poor indeed.

29th August

A letter from Nina advised me that she with Annie and Elliot would be up in the afternoon and wanted me to meet them for dinner at the [name of eating establishment].
It was a very wet day, raining continually and I was sorry to go out.
They brought another lady friend with them. The theatre tickets they arranged to see a play at the Duke of York, "Surprise de Bergier" I think it is called - I had got the two days ago to make sure of seats.
The dinner expensive and good - had to be rushed through for Annie and have her friend (her sister Mrs Davis) will [be?] late.
The play was not up to much, but *****[name] had thought a lot of it.
Later had to walk still raining.

30th August

18 St Georges Square
Mrs Bates
Yesterday I heard of a gentleman who wanted to let his flat furnished for a few weeks - so I went to see it - in St Georges Square, nice and quiet - though up three flights of stairs. The rental was something less than I pay at the Grosvenor for one room. So I took it on the spot, and moved in this forenoon.
The sitting room and bedroom had the walls simply covered with paintings. It seems the gentleman's sister is a painter - a very good [artist] I should judge.
In the afternoon I waited at Convent Garden Opera House for Elliot and his party - as they did not come out I took the bus to Hern Hill where they have a flat, met Mrs Davis, Annies's sister, and Hino on the bus.
I had Tea at the flat, Elliot and Hino left at 8pm for Basingstoke - I took the others out for a walk and dinner.
Mrs Davis has three children.

31st August

18 St George's Square
Mrs Bates
11 after Trinity
Spent a fairly good night, bed not as long as I should like, good breakfast - Mrs Bates the Landlady - seems obliging and pleasant.
The weather being nice and fine I was out walking - lunch in Kensington Gardens where several times I have had a cup of Tea in the open.
These London Parks are most delightful places - I ought really to try and get a shot[photograph] or two of Hyde Park. It is no wonder London is a healthy large town with all these breathing spaces for her people.
I intended to hunt up Reverend Guy Thornton who I hear is working with F.B.Myers. I missed finding his place. Was told it was "Christ Church Westminster" but when I got there I found a Reverend Campbell instead.

1st Sep

Off early to Headquarters and also to see if I could get tickets for the Melvilles - I managed and took them out to Hern Hill, missing Elliot who is coming back from Basingstoke, instead of going home came on to my diggings, finding no one in this time was wasted.
I met them at the Opera House at night.
Mrs Davis and her little girl also being present.
It was raining when I came home.

2nd Sep

Elliot asked me to meet his Chief, a Mr Budd - who is over here while the Chief Secretary is away on leave. We had dinner at the Holborn Restaurant, one of the show [pieces] ones in London. I have seen them all pretty well by now and much prefer a dinner in a quiet little country place.
The music band is too large I think for the room and instead of being pleasant it is rather noisy.
It was raining again - not much news in the papers.
Elliot tells me Annie and her sister Mrs Davis are his nieces by marriage only - Mrs Davis is very clever. Married to a rotter who went off with an actress after giving her three children - she now supports herself - but he has to contribute, she won't allow a divorce thinking the allowance required to help educate her little ones [might cease].

3rd Sep

At work all day at notes for lectures.
Weather dull.
Met Elliot [traveling down] at Victoria and took him out to 68 Upper Glouster Road to see the Bells.
Annie did not come staying behind with her sister Mrs Davis.
The [sister] is working downtown some where in our office - Was employed at the Chief Paymaster Office, Whitehall, but has now a more congenial post at three pounds ten shillings a week.
Maude was not at home so Elliot only met Ethel, who is looking much better for her holiday. She has been taking lessons again in shorthand.
She goes for three hours a day for dictation and theory to get up her speed - she is a private secretary now to a Member of Parliament, who she says will probably have a larger vocabulary than her late employer - she wants to be up to the mark.
The old lady made in her a hatred for Lloyd George.

4th Sep

The Melvilles left with the evening Train from Euston Station. Elliot asked me to dinner there - with him were his two nice's - Mrs Davis and Annie. The former has married a rotter and is now doing for herself. She was very anxious I should come down to [space left by Mackesy] where she lives and be entertained to Tea by her friend a Doctor where she would meet me - He has I believe taken charge of her little baby boy.
At Headquarters I had been ******[writing] my lectures. Being prepared now, I made up my mind to take on lecturing [out first] with me to New Zealand.

5th Sep

Started off early to hunt up with sergeant Island of the Wellingtons. The various Laut*** shops and finally bought a complete outfit at the S.S. Union [this next line in diary left blank by Mackesy]
J.H. Butcher 243 Ludgate Circus Building London E.C. they [charged] me [with] some forty odd pounds, but makes me ***** of anyone, and things may be hard to purchase in New Zealand just now.
Island managed to sell me a large P.O. hamper[ships travel locker case?]. Headquarters bought a lot {of them] to send their records et cetera back home. It will do nicely, and take a lot of my goods as well - relieving me of one or two parcels of luggage.
I got it down to the firms office, they have closed and left it next door. See them in the morning.

6th Sep

Most busy all forenoon getting the [luggage] et cetera packed. They had intended to get things ready for Monday - but that would have necessitated me taking the big hamper with me in the Train et cetera - lots of extra pay and inconvenience - so I persuaded them to fix everything up at once.
I take my full kit bag over and so got it all in - the hamper was taken to H.Q. padlocks and stored away to leave Monday morning with the last load of stuff that goes down to the "Remuera" while still in London docks.
Afternoon a long run out on the bus. Chalk Farm and S*** *****.
Good weather.

7th Sep

12 after Trinity.
Went down to Brookwood half way to Basingstoke and had a look at London Necropolis Cemetery - It is a sight worth seeing - fabulous about six hundred acres and has 180,000 people buried in it. Saw no New Zealand section - as much as the other Dominions ones.
Found Lieutenant Colonel Saxby's grave, he was one of my best officers and left us for the Infantry at very first Rail Head, Egypt, with
I took a photo of his grave as well as one of a Miss Speedy as she may have been a sister of my former Quartermaster Speedy, and the family might like a copy.
The weather glorious.

[Transcribers note: Special Railway Station and Special funeral trains ran from 1854 between London Necropolis Station and Brookwood Cemetery, offering one-way tickets for coffins, and returns for everyone else. There were two stations at Brookwood, one essentially "Church of England" and one non-conformist or non-Christian
but the station has not been used since it was bombed in April 1941. However, a special funeral train ran from Waterloo in 1979, carrying the body of Earl Mountbatten.]

8th Sep

Up to Headquarters early. Colonel Hunter has made special arrangements for me to have my new dentures made by the latest scientific method.
I shall get a better articulation and better suction for both upper and lower plates they say. But new moulds had to be taken, as the working was not done from plaster of Paris castings.
So new impressions were taken, and tomorrow I go to the great man who is to get several things ready for the vulcanising on board the boat.
I heard Colonels Hutchings and Hunter are to be passengers as well as Captain [space left blank by Mackesy] Rhodes with his wife. He married a Plunket and her sister is also to be of the party.

9th Sep

Went to see "Chin Chin" down at His Majesty [Theatre] - I had heard a lot about it and had been repeatedly told that it was well worth seeing. I found it fully up to expectations - it has been stayed over 400 nights [continually] - the great attraction is the gorgeous display of Eastern costumes. The scenic effect is really grand. The story not much - as it is taken from the Arabian Nights - Ali Baba and his forty thieves.
Getting on all right with the lectures. Wish I had started some weeks sooner and worked up to a book, it might pay quite well. It all seems I shall have time for that on board the boat.
I spent two and a half hours solid in the Dentist chair - scientific disaster!!

10th Sep

After doing some shopping I took the Train for Haselmere leaving from Waterloo Station.
The day was perfect and the view of the country well worth seeing. Haselmere is considered one of the very picturesque ones that can be reached from London.
From Haselmere we took the bus for a few miles out and had a really fine trip to the country.
Hotels seem to be dotted every where and all are full. I should say there is little need for the English people to go abroad until they have explored their own fine country.
I got a letter today dated 3rd September, sent to care of the High Commissioner - marked please forward very urgent. It was from the Secretary General: World Federation B.T.[perhaps British Territory].
I [contacted them] at once, expressing my regret at not being able to call - but had only just got the letter and that I am sailing on the 12th - leaving London 1030.

11th Sep

Took the typewriter back to H.Q. Got the *** cover glasses **** and sports pile, the five gross glasses to make lantern slides, they run into another eight pairs. Also got a fourteen inch lens for the lantern.
Mrs Gopsill arrived from Birmingham -M.G. went to meet her mother.
She turned out to be a very nice quiet ladylike person. She came with me shopping all afternoon.
Had my photo taken in Civvies. Had to have three sittings, first not sharp enough, second plate turned out a scratch on it, thrid taken at 2pm today.
The Grosvenor Hotel looked fine and bright, all the seven floor is servants quarters.
Had dinner at "Fuseatic", getting home late.
Found Mr.Herbert Garrison waiting for me in my room, Secretary of the World Federation B.T. He stayed until midnight. He wants me as Vice President for New Zealand and to come next year to the World Congress in London.

12th Sep

Up rather early to get my pack done - having some luggage with me that needed to go in the van. I thought I had better go to Paddington in plenty of time - M.G. - a large car of New Zealanders were collecting to take the Train and friends to the say good-bye.
In the end Mr and Mrs Garrison turned up, he must have evidently have taken to me - to bring his wife out from Chiswick to have a look at me.
The journey down to Plymouth was most delightful - the country layered in sunshine. England at its best. Many orchards laden with fruit.
On board the "Remuera" we got away about 5.30pm.
Glad to carry a pretty picture of England away with me.
Suitable to New Zealand saying - "I was coming by Remuera".

Built 1911 by W Denny at Dumbarton for the New Zealand Shipping Company,  Official No 124590. 
Cargo and passenger ship, 60 first class berths, 90 second and 130 third class.

13th Sep

Pleased to find my bunk of sufficient length. It makes all the difference to my comfort.
The sea while not bad was rather rough and many of the passengers did not supper at table.
I have seen no list as yet so do not know who is who but there is plenty of time to find out and get to know them if I desire.
The change in temperature is not remarkable. I have to wear a woolen shirt and my cardigan as well - the thickest tunic I have.
My cabin is comfortable and roomy. A baby is however not very far off - I hope it will prove to be a healthy and good natured one. I think it belongs to Captain Rhodes who married a plunket sister too.
I am told there is on board also a family of Williams from Hawkes Bay.
I have not met these people yet.

14th Sep

13 after Trinity
The day was warmer and the sea calmer - but still some people are obliged to stay away from table. Among these are Mrs Meyer and her three daughters - He the Colonel N.Z.M.C. - seems all right - He is the brother of Arthur Meyers of Auckland, minister of ammunitions.
He tells me he has been twenty years away from Auckland.
Met Major Kay who is in charge of the Troops - several of the officers say they have served under me at different times, some in the old volunteering days.
Matron Wilson is on board, it was she who went with me to Alexandria to fetch Chas up to the "Ponte Cuba Hospital" prior to sending him to New Zealand.
Captain Percy Sullivan also on board.

[Transcribers note: "Chas" mentioned above is Major Charles Mackesy, the Colonel's son, twice hospitalised from actions in Gallipoli - the second time with multiple gunshot wounds to arms and chest.]

15th Sep

As the day wore on it got more cold and blowy so that many of the passengers had to refuse their meals again.
I hear it will take us ten days to reach Newport Mews, where we may stay up to three days.
I also hear that one of the holds is full of coal for New Zealand. But whether for this company (Union Steamship Company) or for sale the first officer - my informant - could not say.
All day scots mist has been hanging over the water, making things rather disagreeable.
It will be four years ago the day after tomorrow that Nurse Wilson and I brought Charlie up to Port de Cuba Hospital.

16th Sep

Click here to
go to

The morning found the sea much calmer and by noon all white horses had disappeared.
Mrs Williams of Hawkes Bay had a chat with me. It appears her husband had written to me at the instigations of young Black - some two or more years ago. I well remember. Mrs Black use to live at Keri Keri - was a Williams, died last year in Auckland.
She [Mrs Williams] has her teen, two daughters and son with her.
Now that the passengers are all getting over their sea-sickness we are getting to know one another.
I have been in the dental chair these last two days having the new dentures tried. I hope they do not make a mess of things and that I may get a good fit this time.
But I don't believe they are following out the method they spoke to me in London about.

[Transcribers note: The reference here to "young Black" appears to be in relation to some sort of courts martial perhaps - more research needed here.]

Remuera Lounge - these photos and a comprehensive history of the S.S. Remuera, her trips, conversion from coal - this was her last voyage as a steamer - her role in the second world war and her sinking by German Bombers inbound to the UK in August 1940 - a truly in depth report - available to read by clicking on link in the left hand column.

We thank Gary Law for his work on the "Remuera" page.

17th Sep

A beautiful morning and not much of a swell and as far as I know with the exception of Mrs Meyers everybody is now at the table.
Next to me sits a Miss Wood. Fare all white with *****. [She] has put in five years in England - more or less war work. Principally a good time I should say.
Mr and Mrs Emerson[?] are among the passengers he was for many years the Head Master of Monganui College - They too have spent five years at home while their son was in France. He belongs to the Indian Army.
Mrs (Colonel NZMC) Bernard Meyers lent me a book he wrote - "Letters of a Professional man" - Amazing to read these letters, I should say he is a good man, Imperialist and Patriot.
All the Troops have been put through the Inhaling Chamber. I presume it was about a year ago that New Zealand was visited by the Influenza.
We expect to get to Newport Mews by next Tuesday - and stay some two or three days.
Towards evening blowing and wet.

18th Sep

White horses to be seen again, but the atmosphere decidedly warmer.
An iceberg (large) reported some fifty miles north. Foghorn going about noon.
After lunch the weather got lighter - we passed several steamers - sighted several whales - also a fleet of smaller fishing boats (250 to 300 tons), they must have been about 150 miles out from land.
Passengers sitting down to games and enjoying themselves better. Many I have had no words with yet.
I am most of the time busy in my cabin with my own affairs.
Weather getting warmer as we bear off to the south. We are out one week to night. - wish to goodness we were only one week from New Zealand.

19th Sep

Had the fog horn going all night while the boat slowed down to half speed. The Fog horn is controlled electrically, all they have to do is move a switch! I think the beastly thing goes off every minute for ten seconds.
The forenoon was very boisterous but towards evening the weather moderated considerably and Miss Wood of Christchurch much to her delight got a dance going on the deck after dinner.
A steamer from ******[name of port] to New York kept us company for some miles. It was pleasant to see her lights all flaming - it was an assurance that Peace had settled on the seas again.
A very fine display of Aurora Borealis took place at night.

20th Sep

A very delightful day - Sun and calm for most of the time. Getting to know the passengers slowly.
By request I gave a lecture in the Social Hall after dinner in the evening. It seemed to take very well - and many are the requests for more - Mrs Meyers is now at table. She is a frail little body - but has been putting in two years at [space left here by Mackesy] the blind hospital, or rather the Hospital where the blind soldiers are being treated. It is in Regents Park not far from where the Bells live.
Also met a Miss O'Neil - the people that live at O'Neils Point Auckland.

21st Sep

Sunday 14 after Trinity.
A Miss [space left blank by Mackesy] gave me quite a chat on New Zealand, can not see it altogether. But when asked for her objections they were only philological - she is clever and **** ***** for the amusement of the passengers, but tells no fortunes.
Attended Service forenoon - right in the stern. Sergeant Mears good speaker but like Lawry won't look his audience in the eye.
Young McPhee - a sergeant heard about my lecture, and expressed a wish to see me as we come from the same small town. I found him quite blind - done at Messines, a girl (nice) married him since.
I have been much in the dentists chair - but after everything was going beautifully the careless mechanic in vulcanising spoiled the plates.
All to do again!

22nd Sep

S.S. Remuera
off Newport Mews
An exceptionally fine day.
We got into the "Hampton Roads" by evening when the pilot came on board and we went up as far as Point Comfort where we anchored for the night.
It was fairly late (1030) when I turned in - having been busy entertaining some ladies with stories from the East.
Fort Munroe was of interest as we passed it, but would be of little value against modern guns.

23rd Sep

Hotel Richmond
We got in fairly early to Newport Mews. Several of the passengers had wired ahead for rooms at the Point Comfort Hotel and when they saw it from the boat, and thought it appeared so much like a Barn they were sorry.
I got off about twelve noon. Took the 1.30pm for Richmond arriving at 3.30pm.
The day had been very very hot and a nice big downpour of rain cooled everything off.
Went to the Richmond Hotel quite a nice place, but had to pay $2 for a sixth story room.
Called at the YMCA for information. Went to the Academy of Music in the evening to hear the minstrels - It was very good.
Lieutenant Colonel Hunter attached himself to me - would have been better off alone.

24th Sep

Hotel Richmond
Richmond Virginia.
About the town early. Never knew a place with so many motors for hire.
Took the Tram to Holywood Cemetery and found it probably the best kept one I had ever come across. Not a thing to offend the eye.
Not a single crucifixion in the whole place - Then took the Tram to Oakwood Cemetery for Confederate Soldiers - not so nice.
You may ride for 5cents anywhere - after lunch did some shopping, shirts and books, latter $12, former $4.
I am ***** 2 things 2 twos. - Lieutenant Colonel Hunter who has attached himself to me got our invitations to visit some Golf Club. I did not go. But after having dinner at the YMCA gave them on [to some locals?]- an address which they all liked very much.
Then one of them took me about the principle streets and [then to] bed.
Lent the A.M.R. Sergeant two pounds to be repaid on boat.
Lovely weather.

25th Sep

S.S. Remuera
off Newport Mews.
Went to see R.E. Lee Camp Number 1. The Lodge in fact of the Veterans of the Confederate Army. I had called last night and met the Adjutant and a Colonel ***** I expect but there are no Privates left.
[Met] J. Tyler Jobson a 79 year old this morning. And calling [again] I find he had left for me Confederate money to the value of $183.11, awfully kind of the old man.
The Secretary of the YMCA also presented me with a book of a Mr McGee, another gentleman gave me some Confederate [cans?].
I was asked by two ladies to speak this evening - also by some gentlemen.
Had seen the account in the morning paper of last night [of me] arriving at the R.E.Lee Number 1 Confederates Veterans Club [the first senior officer to visit] since G.A.[perhaps this is short for a commanders name?] in the [nineties?].
I left Richmond at 4pm getting to a very dirty boat at 6.30, but soon went to bed.
We sail at 1000 tomorrow.

Items of reference to the R.E.Lee Number 1 old soldiers home can be found here:http://www.lva.lib.va.us/whatwehave/mil/campabout.htm

26th Sep

The night was passable with the fan going - for all the portholes were closed on account of coral dust.
It was inches thick on deck and hung about every where. Most of the passengers had returned last night **** this morning. All report [having] a good time.
We were to leave at 1000, then 1300, then 1500 but did not get away till 1800.
Passed the "Paparoa" which was to leave Plymouth the day after us.
Hampton Roads where *****[american war ship name] and Monitor had fought, was filled with ships.
The water in the morning had been dirty for the bath. I presumed so many propellers stirred up the mud.
The day fairly blowey - the 2000 tons extra weight seemed to make the ship go more like a pendulum. I do not like the motion as well as before.

27th Sep

Usual games could not be carried out, the swell being rather big.
Many of the passengers have taken to sleeping on the deck. They were cleaned off last night by rain - they tell me there was big heavy thunder storm during the night. I heard nothing.
Heard that Mrs Meyers and her daughter have recovered from sea sickness.
There is a [rumour] started flowing of petty table talk going on Marjorie has evidently been smitten by the first officer - a nice quiet
fellow - with a wife and child at Brighton - and she gives him little peace at breakfast and dinner. Her sisters were Lola and Daphney - all three rather nice girls.
The ships doctor's mother was a Nathan - Wife's name is Cohen from Palmerston North.

28th Sep

15 after Trinity
Quiet day _ Service in the open by the number four hatch. Rain coming up stopped the proceedings.
In the evening the YMCA man gave a lecture on the life of Christ. Useless slides and poor talk. Telling the boys that every time they deny Christ Christ he suffers the same agony of the Crucifixion over again.
No wonder men turn from the preachers - I fear he is depreciated, as everlasting torment [rather than] a God of Love [he] is said to be the originator and keeper of it.
As we near the Isthmus the warmth becomes more and more perceptible.
Again a heavy thunderstorm in the night of which I heard nothing.

29th Sep

At 12 noon we passed San Salvador. It looks a long flat Island with apparently many reefs around the side of it. Has a large lighthouses on the highest elevations. Only a few scattered from (Palui?) were seen.
We passed several steamers overtaking one - The sergeants had a dance in the evening - I hear many complaints as to the Captains unsympathetic behaviour. I have been told he refuses to allow the [Lanterns?] to be used any where claiming it to be dangerous. The pianos are not allowed to be moved from the place where they stand. Singing must stop as it interferes with the wireless et Cetera.
I feel he must be a regular old [Coddger.]
Weather getting warmer.
I got my picture puzzle out, others already in possession.

30th Sep

go to next months entries.

Usual weather.
People all busy playing off a tournament of quoits.
Captain lectured to the sergeants and men on the Panama Canal. While our crowd waited on him till 9pm to finish, where they began to dance.
I being asked by one of the girls complied and did all right.
[Danced with] Maryon Meyers but as I am only used to the old style of walking and soon got her giddy - I shall have to learn the modern