Work – Who were they?

Except for George Crawford, who was still at the Hendon Paper Mill until the 1950s, the names of the staff there are now meaningless to us, and even within the narrative of the diaries, their identities are often uncertain.

Is the Bob, for example, who is mentioned on 30 March, 14 August and 3 September 1914 the Bob Brotherston (written in longhand, for once) whose death from wounds is recorded on 6 May 1915?

All one can say is that the lads in the office were at times rather unruly, that the management seems to have been all too ready to use the War as a means of getting rid of them when trade became bad and the firm’s income fell, and that they were unwilling and ungracious when it came to fulfilling their legal and moral obligation to take their War heroes back when it was over, as will be seen in due course from a December 1918 diary entry and other evidence.

August 2013

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