Deaf Hill Terrace
June 4, 1916
Dear Bro. & Sis. Shorthouse
As a Sunday School we have learned of the loss of one of your sons, the sorrow for which we have to extend the deepest sympathy of all the Teachers and Officials of the School. The present national crisis through we are passing as brought grief into thousands of homes, yours has not been passed by.
It may and will seem hard, the clouds may seem very dark, but we must remember through all this the words of the blessed Saviour “so I will be with you always.” The same God who is too wise to err will support you through this terrible trial if you will but trust in him and I am quite confident that this will be so.
Many of us connected with the School have pleasant memories of Joe. He possessed a good knowledge of the standard things of life, he was a splendid scholar in the class and a keen listener. His character in public and the home life was of the choicest.
In the future when the war is finished, the brave men who are privileged to return, will talk of deed performed, sights seen, the hearing of which will fill out inmost souls, but there will be that one of your own blood whose lips are silent, whose tongue is still, and you will be unable to know all the experiences he passed through for King and Country.
The greatest heros are not always known to the public. Who knows but what some life has been helped and blessed by the instrumentality of Joe. He has completed his task on Earth, this was surely a short life, but he answered the call of King and Country and his name is now written on that immortal Roll of Honour.
As far as human sympathy will reach, we extend it to you in this your time of distress and sorrow. What we are unable to do, we commit to God who is the great succour. I have also on behalf of the members of the Lodge to extend to you their deepest sympathy at this perhaps the greatest trial of your life. Therefore I will close asking you to:
Have faith in God the sun will shine
Though dark the clouds may be today
His hand has planned your path and mine
Have faith in God. Have faith always.
MEMORANDUM from the: Station Town Co-operative Society Limited Wingate Durham
Mr & Mrs F Shorthouse June 5, 1916
Dear Sir and Madam.
I am instructed by the committee to tend to you their deepest sympathy in the sad bereavment you have suffered in the loss of your gallant son.
He was I believe the first of our employees to enlist in the fight for Liberty and Honour and he is also the first to lay down his life in this cause. We trust that God in his great mercy will help you to bear the bitter loss and we are sure that you will be consoled by the thought that Joe died doing his Duty.
With deepest sympathy
Tom Armes Esq.
Letter Amy Peacock 1916
2 South Terr.
7 Jun 1916
I recieved your letter safely and the news was a great shock to us all. I was talking to Lizzie Twitty on Saturday night and she had heard about it but couldn’t believe it but when your letter came and confirmed it. I and mother send our deepest simpathy to your dear mother and father in there sad bereavment. It is a very heavy blow and hard to bear but God nows best but your dear brother is out pain and suffering and dear friend try and keep a brave heart. I no it will be very hard but look to him who cares for us all and he will help you.
Your Sincere Friend