Letter to Mrs. Stepler from Gordon Stepler, April 5th 1917

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Somewhere in France
April 5 1917;
Dear Mother
Received a letter from you (Feb 17) and was glad to hear from you as it is
the first mail I have got for about six weeks altho [sic] I know it is not
your fault.
I am up at the front now and have been up the line three times. I came over
with the 54th and some of the battery were put in the Divisional Ammunition
Column and as I am one of the newest
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in the battery I was one of the unlucky ones. I don't like it very well and
will get in a battery again as soon as I can. I am in the [rubbed out]. My
address now is 337810 - - -, [D Echelon], 1st Canadian D.A.C., B.E.F.,
We are back behind the lines a little and haul the ammunition up to the
batteries. We go up at night and so it is a pretty safe job. We are out all
night when we go up and the weather has been cold and rainy so far. To-day
has been a fine day and I hope it stays that way for a while.
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The mud is fierce as the horses and waggons[sic] plough it up. It is lucky
I have my high boots but should have rubber boots up to the waist. It has
rained nearly every day so my slicker has also been useful.
Our guns sure are giving it to the Germans and seem to be almost [hub] to
[hub] and put over about twenty five shells for every one we get back.
I have seen the tanks and one of them almost ran over a dugout some
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of the fellows were in but it turned just in time.
I missed my last pay in England and did not get paid when we arrived here
so I was dead broke at the time when I needed money most. I sent over to
your friend Lillie Hill for the loan of five dollars so you can send it on
to her as soon as you can. It would take too long to wait for money from
Canada. You then might send me five dollars a week for a month and then I
will have a reserve. I would have difficulty in getting a MO cashed so send
bills and see if you
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can get English or better still French money at the bank. We got paid
yesterday but you know we do not get much here - about three dollars pay. I
will need socks now so send a pair in every parcel. Don't bother sending
Players Cgts as they just cost 5[f] a package here - just a few
Am feeling fine so don't worry about me. I don't get much time for letter
writing now so if anybody asks why I ams not writing to them you
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can tell them the reason.
I guess this is all [scribbled out]. Lots of love to Dad, Dorothy, &
Your loving son,
  W.G. Stepler.