Tag Archives: Chadwick

Rev. Wm. Chadwick was minister at the South Durham Street United Methodist Church and is mentioned in this capacity on numerous occasions in the early part of the diaries, prior to Arthur Linfoot’s enlistment in the RAMC. Little else is known about Rev. Chadwick save that he suffered the loss of a young daughter to an unknown illness in early November 1914.

14 March 1915; Sunday

At chapel and School as usual. Very late in morning and afternoon. Had my class and Henman’s and managed all right. Had decent walk at night. Fine day. Mr Chadwick preaching. Miss Smith sang at night. Fine day. Dresden1 sunk off Robinson Crusoe’s Ireland [sic] by Glasgow, Kent & Orania. Crew taken off.


  1. Dresden had been at both Coronel and the Falkland Islands, as noted on diary entries 1 November and 9 December 1914; Robinson Crusoe Island, formerly known as Más a Tierra after which this battle came to be named, was neutral territory. The RN ships found Dresden at anchor; Dresden sent Lieut. Wilhelm Canaris (head of Abwehr Intelligence in WWII, and part of the opposition to Hitler) with a white flag while they scuttled her. 300 men were interned in Chile. 

7 March 1915; Sunday

Too late for chapel. Had a walk with Joe up Chester Road and back before dinner. Went with Charlie to the Salvation Army Meeting where he sang two solos and I played. A very interesting meeting. Went to Whittakers’ to tea. Miss Butler and Edie Hunter there. At chapel at night. I played for children’s service and Mrs Chadwick spoke. Came up with Billy Peake and Billy Whittaker. Sang anthem very badly and a Miss Wilkinson from Thornhill sang very nicely.

21 February 1915; Sunday

At chapel and School as usual. Mr Chadwick preaching. Rather stormy and we didn’t get our walks. Had to refuse a lot of business at the side door1.


  1. The shop would have been closed on Sunday as was then required by law. Perhaps, under the shop’s former ownership, some customers had been in the habit of making clandestine purchases at the side door on a Sunday? This is clearly a practice which ALL and his family, devout observers of the Christian sabbath, would never have allowed to continue. 

24 January 1915; Sunday

At chapel as usual Got on very well at Sunday School. Rather stormy and didn’t get for walks. Mr Chadwick preaching. Received news last thing of the battle in the North Sea. Battle in North Sea1. The German ship Bluecher2 sunk by our battle cruisers in the North Sea. The Lion, Tiger, Princess Royal, New Zealand and Indomitable with light cruisers and destroyers.


  1. This was the Battle of the Dogger Bank; the German High Seas Fleet (under Admiral Hipper) was to raid the British fishing fleet, but the British discovered this on 23 January, and (especially after the public outrage caused by the raid on Scarborough etc.) the British Grand Fleet (under Admiral Beatty) had to intercept them. The Germans were lucky that their flagship, Seydlitz, did not blow up due to fire; the loss of the Blücher is said to have caused the Kaiser to order that his High Seas Fleet remain in port thereafter – which it largely did, except for Jutland at the end of May 1916. The British flagship, Lion, was badly damaged but not lost. 

  2. SMS Blücher was the last armoured cruiser built by the German Empire. She was designed to match what German intelligence incorrectly believed to be the specifications of the British Invincible-class battlecruisers. 

18 January 1915; Monday

At work as usual. Busy all day. Played the piano at night, and then went to Mr Chadwicks. Talked to Mrs Chadwick until 10 o’clock, and then stayed and had supper and didn’t leave until 11 o’clock. Talked about speeches1 that we couldn’t quarrel about. They referred to the loss of their little girl2. Mother in bed bad3.

Great Earthquake4 in Italy about this time. About 30,000.


  1. “Speeches”: transcription correct, but perhaps “subjects” was intended. 

  2. ALL had first heard of the Chadwicks’ loss on 9 November 1914

  3. “Bad”: in North-Eastern English idiom means ill or unwell. 

  4. Great Earthquake: presumably the earthquake (13.01.15) in Avezzano, in the Abruzzo region of central Italy, said to have been ‘possibly’ the worst earthquake in Italy’s history. The town had been on the shore of Lake Fucino, at that time ‘the largest lake in peninsular Italy’ (this presumably excludes the lakes north of the Po), which was completely drained in the late 19th century, leaving land for cultivation and housing. Population was 42,000, of whom 12,000 died; only the Casa dei Palazzi and a wing of the Palazzo Orsini remained. 

1 January 1915; Friday

[written above printed date -­ ] Posted letter to N.Z.1

Got supper at Mrs Wiseman’s with Ernie and Joe Mummery after the Watch service. Shook hands with several at church, Ernie first and Mr Chadwick next. Went to bed about 2 o’clock. Charlie got up at 7 o’clock. I walked through to Seaham2 and walked back in the afternoon. Took 1¼ hours to go there and 65 minutes to come back. Strong south easterly gale blowing and very wet. I was drenched. All family but Charlie at dinner and tea and supper together. Played a few games, ping pong, etcetera at night and went to go <sic; “bed” intended?> about mid-­‐night. Charlie in shortly after 11 o’clock and had to start again at 8 o’clock in the morning. “Formidable”3 blown up with a loss of about 700 lives in the Channel.


  1. The letter to N.Z. was probably sent to ALL’s cousin, Hilda Tate Linfoot. See Hilda disambiguation page

  2. Seaham [Harbour]: small colliery town and sea-­port 4 miles S. of Sunderland. 

  3. HMS Formidable, built 1904, was a battleship stationed at Sheerness to guard against possible German invasion. On 31 December she was on gunnery practice off the Isle of Wight, and was hit during the night by two torpedoes from submarine U24. 547 officers and men were lost out of 780. 

31 December 1914; Thursday

Not much to do at work. Tom brought his gramophone over at night. I received 5/61 Christmas bonus. Charlie at work from 5.35 train until about midnight. Went to the Watch service2 with Ernie and Joe after finishing the letter to New Zealand. Mr Chadwick and Joe Speed spoke and Mr Mullens prayed. Pretty good service. I had walk round the town. Walked through Garrison Field with Joe.

THE END3


  1. Five shillings and six pence: = 27½p. 

  2. “Watch service”: the Methodist “watch-night” service, usually starting at 11.30 pm, to see the New Year in. 

  3. It was ALL’s habit to write “THE END”, or some variation thereof, on the last day of each diary. 

20 December 1914; Sunday

At chapel at night and at School as usual. Walked round the streets first thing because I was too late for chapel. A bit trouble at night through Miss Bigwood taking it into her head to assist the carol singers without consulting the choir. We sang “And the Glory” wrong. Mr Mullens preached in the morning and a stranger at night because Mr Chadwick was ill again.