Letter

Scope and Content

From Hankow. He arrived here at 7am on Friday. Before he was dressed, practically the whole of the mission staff and quite a few of the Chinese assembled in the ship's saloon to welcome him. It was unexpected and very warming. He has had a word with [Dorothy Hill] but as he suspected everything is up in the air pending the arrival of letters, so Emily should not breathe a word to anyone [about Dorothy's engagement].

Yesterday [James] Heady [acting District Chairman in H B R's absence] and H B R went over the C.C.C [Central China College?], Wesley College [Wuchang] where eight new houses for both Chinese and foreign staff are being built, Chieh Chia Chieh [Chapel? - Wuchang] and Wang Fu Ku [Chapel?]. It was a valuable and heartening experience.

Mr Gould took the service here this morning and H B R took the service this afternoon. He had his eyes tested tonight and there has been plenty of talk in between.

[George] Haddon 'is blowing off again'. H B R visits Union Hospital tomorrow. Rao en Chao [Chinese minister] comes in the evening.

He has not yet seen [William and Priscilla] Rowley but they will be here before long. Mrs [E. Curtiss] Franklin has come here a little early and is now feeling a little lonely as a result. H B R thinks that he shall move [E. Curtiss Franklin] down to help him with various things and be his general junior helper instead of [H. W. Kenneth] Sandy. It must however be done discreetly lest there be Chinese criticism.

Waggie [Ethel Wagstaff: Lay missionary first appointed to China in 1914] goes [on home furlough] in ten days time.

[James] Heady leaves [on home furlough] on March 1st.

Grace [Ridge] and [Edith] Milner leave for home on March 10th.

He does not know when Rowley leaves.

The babys of the Osborns' [family of George Robson Osborn] and the Boltons' [Thomas son of Ralph Bolton] 'are duly admired & greatly welcomed'. The only persons that he has not yet seen are [Nora] Booth and Mrs [James Maxwell] Gratton who are both at Union Hospital and [Edward] Cundall who is at [unreadable word]. He should catch up with all of them tomorrow.

He has re-read Jesus of Galilee and shall do so again and again. It is a beautiful book.

H B R expects that Dr McClelland will be [sharing a house?] with him for some time with perhaps the new Wesley College man, Richardson. Cheng Shu Fu will return to them as their cook and Wang Shu Fu 'hangs around' - H B R would like him to be the gate- keeper at Chieh Chia Chieh [Chapel].

In a postscript he mentions that two letters have been received so far from Emily.

Notes

  • George Robson Osborn (1905-79) was born in Sheffield and was educated at the Leys School and Kings College, Cambridge. He trained for the Wesleyan ministry at Wesley House, Cambridge, and in 1930 was appointed to the China mission. For three years he worked with the Y.M.C.A. in Peking and then taught at the Wuchang Wesley Middle School. In 1937 he was placed in charge of a refugee camp and remained there after the camp was overrun by the Japanese. During the war Osborn was interned at Langhwa and was head of the camp school. Despite the terrible conditions he achieved standards of education comparable to those in Britain. In 1945 he went back to Wuchang and apart from a period of home furlough, remained in China until well after the Communist takeover. He returned to England in 1951 and served as Secretary of the Methodist Education Committee (later Department) until his retirement in 1970. He did much valuable work in the field of ecumenical co-operation with the Church of England as well as helping to expand the Methodist teacher training colleges. After his retirement Osborn remained active in the educational field and the United Nations Association. Source: Minutes and Yearbook of the Methodist Conference 1980.
  • James Maxwell Gratton (1896-1971) was born at Leominster in Herefordshire. He was educated at Kingswood School and served in the army during World War 1. After the war he trained for the Wesleyan ministry at Didsbury and Handsworth and was appointed to the China Mission in 1922. He was evacuated with other missionaries during the disturbances of 1927 but returned to China after one year, serving at Wesley College in Wuchang. After his return home in 1939, Gratton was a circuit minister for two years before joining the army chaplaincy. He saw service in Africa and after the war went back to China for three years. When China was closed to missionaries, Gratton returned to the circuit ministry in England until superannuation in 1961. Source: Minutes of Conference 1971.

Note

Notes

  • George Robson Osborn (1905-79) was born in Sheffield and was educated at the Leys School and Kings College, Cambridge. He trained for the Wesleyan ministry at Wesley House, Cambridge, and in 1930 was appointed to the China mission. For three years he worked with the Y.M.C.A. in Peking and then taught at the Wuchang Wesley Middle School. In 1937 he was placed in charge of a refugee camp and remained there after the camp was overrun by the Japanese. During the war Osborn was interned at Langhwa and was head of the camp school. Despite the terrible conditions he achieved standards of education comparable to those in Britain. In 1945 he went back to Wuchang and apart from a period of home furlough, remained in China until well after the Communist takeover. He returned to England in 1951 and served as Secretary of the Methodist Education Committee (later Department) until his retirement in 1970. He did much valuable work in the field of ecumenical co-operation with the Church of England as well as helping to expand the Methodist teacher training colleges. After his retirement Osborn remained active in the educational field and the United Nations Association. Source: Minutes and Yearbook of the Methodist Conference 1980.
  • James Maxwell Gratton (1896-1971) was born at Leominster in Herefordshire. He was educated at Kingswood School and served in the army during World War 1. After the war he trained for the Wesleyan ministry at Didsbury and Handsworth and was appointed to the China Mission in 1922. He was evacuated with other missionaries during the disturbances of 1927 but returned to China after one year, serving at Wesley College in Wuchang. After his return home in 1939, Gratton was a circuit minister for two years before joining the army chaplaincy. He saw service in Africa and after the war went back to China for three years. When China was closed to missionaries, Gratton returned to the circuit ministry in England until superannuation in 1961. Source: Minutes of Conference 1971.