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Hudson, John Henry, Winnipeg, Manitoba, B.S.A. (1916). Military Service: Lieutenant, Reg. No. 910246, 196th Univ. Bn. Attestation Papers. Diary Reference: “Fourth year [J. H.] Hudson is president,” 1:19 Mar ’15.
Additional Biographical Information:
Graduate and Member of Staff, 910246, 196th Univ. Bn. (Field Co.).
University of Manitoba, Archives and Special Collections, Managra, v. XI, No. 1 (Nov 1917), 6.
France, Jan. 1st, 1918.
Dear Mr. Sproule:
A very pleasant surprise was awaiting me today, the first of the New Year, when I returned from a forced landing from the air a few miles away. The arrival of your very welcome letter has bucked me greatly, to think that I still have some definite connection with the old college. It seems ages since I heard from anyone there, and yet apparently we are always in your thoughts, and I must apologize for being a doubting Thomas.
Your letter was posted on October 14th, and it has travelled considerably before finally reaching me today. It certainly speaks well for the Army Postal Service. I have had several letters follow me around for months, but they always finally arrive, even if they are a long time about it. I will enclose the envelope just to show you how persistent the authorities are.
The news in your letter is very interesting, particularly that about the work of the Red Cross Society, and the members of the college staff. I have just shown it to an old ’16 student, who started with us at the old college, but did not continue. His name is Broadhurst, perhaps you remember him, but he has changed considerably through his experiences out here. He is an observer in the same squadron that I am a pilot in. We often recall names and incidents in connection with the college.
Funnily enough, I have met very few of our boys over here so far, especially since I have been flying. Being attached to the R.F.C., I get very little opportunity to keep in touch with the Canadian battalions. There are only three or four of the old 196th Battalion with whom I am still corresponding, although I am continually on the look-out for any chance meeting at the various places I go to.
Our boys have done some splendid work, and it’s regrettable that some of them have already paid the great price. You probably know the latest new of them better than I do, as that kind of news does not circulate very quickly here. We often hear news for the first time from Canada. Bradford and I were together for several months after leaving Canada, and I have surely missed him, especially since he fell on the Passchendaele Ridge. Nelson Young is in England getting used to his new leg. Sometime ago, just before I left for France, I was rather fortunate in meeting Macauley [sic - McAuley] , Roy Hopper and Frank Belway, as well as two others from the 196th. It was a great day for us all, and we certainly worked overtime with our tongues for awhile. We all came over together as privates except Belway, who came with another battalion, and yet at that meeting we all had our commissions, and funnily, enough we were all to leave for France within a few days. I came over on the same boat as Macaulay, and met Belway when we landed. Mac went off in another direction, but Frank and I both being in the Flying Corps, went to the same Pool together, where we were for a few days before being separated, as we fly different types of machines. Frank is doing Artillery observation work, and I drop “eggs” (bombs) behind Fritzy’s lines. We usually go up to about 15,000 ft. or over, but today I was unfortunately just over 200 ft., when my engine suddenly coughed out, and I had to make a quick landing. I had no choice of fields, and the one I had to land in happened to have the terrace effect. My gliding space carried me over one of these “steps,” and we “pancaked” (dropped flat) onto the lower level. As the machine weighs over two tons, and I had an observer as well as a good many pounds of ammunition on board, something had to give way, so now my old bus has to spend the night out, before being dismantled tomorrow. Fortunately, neither of us was hurt, for which we are extremely thankful.
Doug Smith has just been on leave to England, but I believe he is back here again now. Am writing him tonight, and will enclose your letter, in case he has not received his like token yet. I’m hoping to see him soon, and then, perhaps, we shall not talk!!
Broadhurst joins me in wishing Mrs. Sproule and yourself, as well as all our friends at the college, a most Prosperous New Year, and we hope to be moving among the familiar haunts in Manitoba before the advent of another New Year’s Day.
J. H. Hudson, Lieut.
University of Manitoba, Archives and Special Collections, Managra, v. XI, No. 4, (Feb. 1918), 43-45.
Dear Mr. Harrison
I have just received your Alumni parcel, which seems to have wandered all over the country in search of me. I surely am very grateful for it, and appreciate the work of the Alumni Association very much. You will be interested to know that the parcel arrived in really good condition, particularly considering the number of places it has been to.
I can hardly express my feelings, which I believe the same as those of all the M.A.C. students over here, when some thought comes from the place we are often thinking of. It’s real good to live in thought for a while with the old associations, in the old lecture rooms, in the gym., in the auditorium, on the campus, and the hundred and one things and places one can easily recall.
We had a very good reminder of the old days a few days ago, when we had a re-union of members of the 196th Battalion in a small village a few miles from the front line. There were sixty men of us present, and about twenty of those were old M.A.C. boys. We could have had a much larger crowd, but the whole thing had to be done in a big hurry, and we had no time to let everyone know.
We had a fairly good little spread, and the six officers present performed the domestic act and waited on the other boys. When we were dishing out the food, we could not help thinking of the time when the boys helped in the dining room in an emergency. Doug. Smith and I found we could still wash dishes fairly well too. The officers included Capt. Martin, Lieut. McLean, Lieut. Black, Capt. Oliver, Lieut. Doug Smith (18) and myself. Amongst the rest were Hugh McPhail, Muldrew, Alvan [Alvin] Mitchell, Vic. Thompson, Headley [Hedley], Tingley, Higham and Jenkins, as well as many more whose names I can’t recall just now.
It surely was great to meet so many old acquaintances from the west, like that, and under such conditions, too! The final spasm sounded something like the finish of an inter-collegiate debate or football match. Most of us were rather hoarse after a really splendid attempt to raise the roof with the old college yells.
You have probably heard of the educational scheme in operation on the 3rd Division, Canadians. It is progressing very well. Mr. Martin, of St. John’s, is a very active worker in it, and now Ken Gordon (’14) [sic – graduated in ‘13] and Higham (’19) are also helping in the instruction of Agriculture. There are also two branches of the “School” in England, in one of which, I believe, R. A. Cunningham is instructing.
I saw Roy Hopper, Big Macaulay [sic - McAuley], and Frank Belway about two months ago. The latter is in the R.F.C., and the other two are machine gun officers. Beaty Beaubier and his brother were stationed for a time near the aerodrome we have just left.
We have not had extra good weather for flying for the past month or two, but we’ve done a fair amount of it. It is sometimes a little chilly at 15-18,000 feet up, and then again we think it is quite “warm” when the “Archies” (anti-aircraft) are after us.
Please remember us all to everyone, and wish them all every success from us. We are looking for the next issue of “Managra” soon.
Jack Hudson (’16)
University of Manitoba, Archives and Special Collections, Managra, v. XI, No. 5, (Mar. 1918), 65-66.
Farewell to Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Hudson
The first meeting of our Alumni took the form of a supper at the Mikado; forty-five members were present. The supper was arranged to honor Mr. and Mrs. Hudson, who were leaving Winnipeg the following afternoon. Mr. and Mrs. Hudson were in England during the summer, and while over there, Jack was offered a good position in dairy work, which he accepted. They are now returning to the Old Country to live.
The president of the Alumni could not be present at the supper; in his absence the vice-president conveyed to Mr. and Mrs. Hudson the good wishes of the members. A hope was also expressed that they return soon to visit their colonial friends.
After the supper the members had an opportunity to talk with our guests, to wish them happiness, to bid them “good-bye.” It was quite evident that Mr. and Mrs. Hudson have many friends here, and that they carry with them to their new home the warm regards and kind wishes of these friends. – E. T.
Managra, v. XIX, no. 1 (November 1925), 24