Leading up to the 100 year anniversary of the Armistice being signed, the boys in 4RT did some research on World War One and created a display board in the Junior School, along with the other classes in the building. Some of the boys were able to share stories of relatives in their own families who had fought in the war.
James brought into school a wonderful historical artefact which is important in his family. It is a metal Princess Mary gift box, thousands of which were sent by Princess Mary to the front, containing small comforts from home. Inside the beautiful box there was still the Christmas card from the Princess and a small book containing verses from the bible to give the men on the battlefield comfort during the terrible fighting. This is the extraordinary information that James wrote to tell us about the history of the box and th e person to whom it was given.
The Princess Mary gift box was given to my Great, Great Grandfather, who was called Reginald Orme Massey. He was a private in the Leicestershire Yeomanry. He was a farmers’ son who went to war in 1914, at the age of 19, riding his own horse. Sadly this horse was killed whilst saving Private Massey’s life. When under fire, he dismounted on the right hand side instead of the usual left, and the horse took the shot.
Thank you, James, for sharing the story with us.