Letter

Scope and Content

From the Missionary Home in Shanghai. It was with great relief that he received the cable last night informing him that Joan and Gordon had both passed the Inter. It reflects great credit on Emily.

The question of separated families has been very much in the minds of both H B R and [William Wildriddge] Gibson. It has also recently been raised by both [James John] Heady and Coundell. H B R therefore gathered all together on Friday at Avenue Haig ' & we decided to say to Heady & Coundell that business people were at least to some extent getting wives & families to Hankow (concession area), that Stanfields, Dixons & Liveseys were all going & that I advised they shd come & bring part of their families at least. Afterwards...I meditated that if you were coming that would be the seal on my judgement for more than anything I might say that I had hardly the right to ask others to do what I was not doing myself. Then Joan's & Gordon's needs seemed to block the way'.

He is sending off a cable today which will prepare Emily for the issues raised in this letter.

  • 1. He presumes that Joan will now go to Bedford. She has a base with Miss Trew at Queenswood School and except for the awkward residential matter is provided for in one way or another. Assuming that Emily returns to China, could not the accommodation matter be sorted out between Emily, Miss Trew and Miss Tuke?
  • 2. H B R feels that this matter of a junior mastership for Gordon is in these days too uncertain. He has proved himself and there is no doubt that he could sail an honours degree with the proper help. H B R is not fully convinced that the teachers life would suit Gordon, but if Emily and Gordon are sure, then there is Westminster, Exeter, Nottingham, Reading or even Bristol. Wiseman is another possibility or even Towlson. He would very much like Emily to see Starkie and has suggested that in the cable. There can be little doubt that Miss Trew will see that Joan is alright. He would feel a lot happier if Gordon was in a similar situation. Possibly [Hubert Arthur] Wootton will now relent but unless all were fixed up for 1928 it is better not to settle things.
  • 3. His conclusion is that Emily may well now return to China for three or four years until Morley is near the end of his time at Kingswood and Joan and Gordon almost through College.
  • 4. The Dixons now probably have to come here. They shall probably take the decision today. The doctors are most emphatic that Arthur [Dixon] should return to England. H B R is equally emphatic that he does not want the family divided. None of them are in really good health except for Margaret.

H B R will therefore probably be left with [Ernest Henry] Livesley as his only senior missionary until Heady and Coundell return. He really needs Emily's help.

Should it turn out that Kuling is not ready for occupation until next year, Emily will have to go to [unreadable place-name]. He thinks that Mrs Gibson will soon be on the way if Emily comes out.

He has no doubts that Emily should return to China. The only uncertainty is Arnold and Peter but on reflection they will have one another and their parents.

It would be lovely if they could be together for Christmas. He expects to leave for Hankow tonight.