Ethel’s work in Camouflage

Lady Monkswell's diary: Saturday 5th January A steeple-chase walk with Mr Kit. got over stream below Knoll Farm, saw plovers, head their cry.

Ethel [my niece] to lunch. We talk of war conditions and her own work in Navy camouflage.

At Shipness [in Scotland] she plants and tends the garden and drives and cleans the car. One day they saw ten great liners, filled with Americans, go past between them and Arran - other great ships are constantly going by. Frances to tea and Mr Kit. Cosmo nearly as worn out as Robert. Pretty sure he is not to be sent abroad.


U-boats on American coast

June 6th 1918 Field of hay carried. Went to Mrs Bartlett about donkey for Lorna. Enemy at the Marne but “held firmly” there. U-boats on American coast - Stirs them up

June 8th 1918 Came here fortnight today [near Chideock] Watched an air-ship pass close, Lorna waved to it. It hung over Bay all PM. Sea planes came up from both sides, also destroyers, great firing about 11pm. Did they get a U-boat? I think so


150 U-boats sunk

Lady Mary’s diary: Sept 6th 1918

News very good. List of 150 U-boats and the captains’ names we have sunk, and that is not all, “but enough”. Most impressive. The worthy Ebdon brought in a ton of coal, to my great relief.

September 7th 1918 News very good a new world. In pony cart to Mrs Dyer Mrs Ryle and Drysdale. Took Mrs Kitson. After pleasant talk & tea, Mrs Kit and I walked by Melplash Court. Fresh warm wind, lovely: saw a pair of wheatears, brown body, grey breast, white back edged w. black.

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Explore by day, month or person here on the blog or on our five Twitter feeds: @Voicesfrom1918 @LadyMonkswell @MarieStopes1918 @JamesSansom230 and @OliveHarcourt.

Voices from 1918 has been developed by artists Sharon Hayden and Alastair Nisbet in partnership with Wimborne Community Theatre, Dorset History Centre and the Priest’s House Museum, Wimborne with funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Thanks to all who have helped us with this project: Maria Gayton and staff at Dorset History Centre where we found Lady Mary Monkswell’s diaries; Joan Cocozza, ward of nursing auxiliary Olive Harcourt; Portland Museum where we found James Sansom’s diaries; the British Library and Wellcome Libraries; Priest’s House Museum in Wimborne and Gill Horitz from Wimborne Community Theatre.

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