Letters of the First World War: last letters home

An image of the last letter sent by Peter Penfold to his wife. It was received after he had been killed. Image © IWM / Trevor Penfold

The last letter sent by Peter Penfold to his wife. It was received after he had been killed. Image © IWM / Trevor Penfold

For many who saw friends and family go off to serve in uniform during the First World War there was always the lingering fear that any correspondence received from the front might be the last they heard from their loved ones.

Peter Penfold’s Last Letter Home

The touching letter pictured above is one example of a last letter home received from the front, written by Peter Penfold, who served in the Canadian Expeditionary Force. In it he writes:

“My Darling Wife Hetty,

Just a few more lines dear to let you know that I am in the best of health and we are getting much nicer weather now its has stopped raining…I met a Cousin of mine in the Imperial Army and he gave me the address of my Cousin Tom and I got a Photo of my Cousin which is Toms Daughter…”95 air max release dates

The letter was the last his wife heard from him before she was sadly notified that he died of wounds on the 3 October 1918, just over a month before the end of the war.

You can view images of both pages of Peter’s last letter home, along with a full transcription, on his Life Story page.

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