Rothwell was an 18 year old bank clerk in Baldock when the first of these postcards were sent to his girlfriend Hilda in Dorset. By 1918 he was 23, had suffered ‘malaria’ (more on that later) and was serving in Egypt and Palestine; he died aged 36. The impossible neatness of his handwriting, the courtly endearments and turn of phrase seem a different world entirely from the lives of his great grandsons. But then they have never had to grow up in such a hurry; these letters are from a time before teenagers.
Baldock June 8th 1913
Thankyou very very much for your lovely long letter: it came on Sunday morning & took me quite by surprise. I have been very busy for the last 10 days & I must confess I have been a bit lazy. This evening I have been all around Clothall district and have just locked up here. I will try and write more tomorrow Dear- at least I will start: I am sending the other ones for you to read. Goodbye Darling.
Love from Your own Rothwell.