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 East Lothian’s War

The flow of information in newspapers, letters and postcards was important - for those at home and for men and women serving overseas.

The newspapers printed ever longer lists of those who had gone missing, were wounded or killed. For example, it was reported that three East Lothian Royal Scots had been killed at the front. Private Robert Aithie, House o' Muir, by Ormiston, Private William Muir, Ormiston, and Private Andrew Baird, Tranent. A letter from Private McGinty, direct from the trenches, had conveyed the news.

On Christmas Eve 1914, at Mount Pleasant, the Post Office undertook a gigantic task. Mount Pleasant was the pivot on which the postal system of the whole country revolved. Vans from all the terminal stations of the railways brought parcels and letters from all parts of the world. Not only was the work heavier this Christmas than ever before, but it had been conducted after the organisation was deprived of something like a thousand men who were now serving their country.

Retailers who had stocked themselves before the war began with cards of Christmas greetings "made in Germany" were sorely hit.

Parcels with Christmas comforts and luxuries had been sent to the men of "Kitchener's Army", training at the camps or at the front. The Royal Engineers Postal Section had about 1,000 men working on the Continent, and some 300 in London, stationed at Mount Pleasant.


A huge amount of mail to be sorted at Mount Pleasant.

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