Journal Entry – Sunday March 11th 1917

Another wet Sunday. In Thursday’s paper was an account of a Home Rule Debate in the House. The Government are now independent of the Irish Vote, & although the Home Rule has been passed yet now Lloyd George turns round & says that Home Rule can be for those who want it, which means that Ulster is to be left out. This naturally makes Irishmen very angry as they consider they have been badly treated, & so they have. This affair & the publication of the Report of the Commission on the Dardanelles has made the week a depressing one....

Journal Entry – Wednesday March 7th 1917

A terrible N E wind cutting through everything, strong & biting. I tried to go to Marystowe, but had to turn back. Father however drove in to Tavistock for a Kelly College meeting. The Germans continue to withdraw on the western front. Lovat Fraser – a writer in the Daily Mail – gives 6 probable reasons why they are doing it. One is that by retreating in this way we have to go to the expense of making fresh railways & so will have to postpone our offensive. He states that it does not indicate any weakness on their part....

Journal Entry – Wednesday February 28th 1917

Kut has been taken and the Turks driven back. Here we have been thrilled all day. The face of the stable clock has been regilded. For years the figures have gradually got more & more indistinct until alt last they have disappeared & we could only guess the time by the position of the hands. Two men came up from Plymouth, one came into the house and set going all the clocks, & the other did the gilding. Balsdon was very pleased with himself as it was his suggestion. The man took up three sacks stuffed with hay, which he...

Journal Entry – Sunday August 9th 1914

Same misty rain. Everything in the house damp & wet Rose at 6.30 fed fowls. Church at 8. Quite a lot of people including Locum tenens of Bradstone & Dunterton. Good sermon at Matins from Mr Smith (a prepared one) Had to play for children service. Afterwards Dorothea, Ela & I went up to Minnemore with Hector. Very damp but not much falling. After tea fed fowls. 10 eggs. Must try and get rid of some of the stags* . Food is getting very dear. We have started jam sandwiches for tea to save butter, the family call them “the...

Journal Entry – Sunday August 2nd 1914

We had a special service here that day, because of the great seriousness of the European situation. We began with the Litany Followed by the Celebration. Mr Smith asked everyone to stop at the end of the Service. We heard no news all day. it was very hot, I walked over to Bradstone Rectory to call on the Locum Tenen’s*1 Wife, whom I failed to find. Mary, Ursula, Frank & Reginald walked over to Marystowe to settle about the proposed camp on Dartmoor which considering the exceeding dampness of the weather, they wish to put off. Very large congregation at...

Margaret Clare Kelly

Margaret Kelly was born in 1879 in Ottery St Mary, Devon. She was the eldest daughter of Rev. Maitland Kelly and Agnes Leigh Clare Kelly. Following her mother’s death, and that of her Stepmother, in 1891 Margaret became matriarch of the Kelly Family, responsible for the running of the household. In 1899 her father inherited Kelly House from his brother Reginald and became squire of Kelly. Margaret came to Kelly with her father. It is fair, indeed necessary, to recognise many aspects of her identity when considering the tone and opinions she uses and espouses in this memoir. First, she...

Coming Soon!

Starting on the 2nd August this year, we will be blogging Margaret Clare Kelly’s WW1 diary! Family information and a brief overview introducing Margaret are now available on the blog. For more information on Kelly House, visit our website: http://kelly-house.co.uk  

Introduction.

Over the next few years, we have carved out an ambitious project to follow the wartime diaries of Margaret Kelly, written over 100 years ago starting immediately before the outbreak of the first World War in August of 1914. Over the subsequent four years, Margaret kept a personal journal which described both the activities around her, and those from around the world. Sometimes in detail, and other times distressingly vague, she records the number of eggs harvested from the chickens, the places where she takes tea, and her efforts to learn to bandage effectively, and nurse wounded soldiers. She also...