Perhaps the most poignant of all tasks undertaken by serving men was the composition of what might become their last letter, often prepared the day before a big attack or heading to the Front. Here is the last letter of Roland Garvin, the son of James Louis Garvin, the noted editor of The Observer and proponent of strong leadership during the war. Roland was killed on the Somme in 1916: the loss haunted James, affecting his editorials for the paper, and caused him to press for an enlightened peace settlement.
- Full title:
- Garvin Papers. Letters to James Louis Garvin from Roland Gerard Garvin; March-July 1916, n.d.
- 20 July 1916, The Somme
- Manuscript / Letter / Ephemera
- Roland Gerard Garvin
- Usage terms
- Creative Commons Attribution licence
- Held by
- From the Garvin archive, British Library
- Add MS 88882/3/9
- Article by:
- Randall Stevenson
- Literature 1900–1950, Capturing and creating the modern, Power and conflict
Randall Stevenson describes how the violence and loss of the First World War affected modernist writers’ attitudes towards nature and time, as well as shaping their experiments with language, literary form and the representation of consciousness.
- Article by:
- Santanu Das
- Life as a soldier
From smell and sound to touch and perception, Dr Santanu Das draws on soldiers' records to consider the sensory experiences within the trenches of World War One.