Clifford Almon Wells was born in Toronto, Canada, March 12th, 1892. His teaching career at Johns Hopkins University was bought to a end when he decided in the summer of 1915 that it was his duty to relinquish his position and take his part as a Canadian in the European war. In Sep. he enlisted as a Private in the 4th University Company, one of the reinforcing companies of the famous Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. Although without previous military training his advancement was rapid, later he was transferred to the 8th Battalion as 2nd Lieutenant.
His letters cover a period of eighteen months. They were written in railway cars and on board ship; in tents in England, Belgium and France; in huts, shacks, furnace rooms and ruined houses; in London boarding houses and hotels; in French farm-houses, and German dugouts; in the midst of the awful clamors and crashings and thunders of artillery, and within sound of the coughing of a sick German in the front line of enemy trenches.
He wrote of things which others have written about; of things which pleased him, and of other things which displeased him, most of these relating to the commonplace of life. But in addition to the commonplace there will be found in these letters a surprising variety of topics, and withal such graphic descriptions, thrilling or amusing stories, and information on many matters of interest to all who have friends overseas that the letters will both entertain and enlighten.
His last dated letter was written the 20th day of April, 1917, eleven days after the battle of Vimy Ridge. Thankful because he had had a part in that battle, exultant and confident in view of the great victory, but before this letter reached her she had received official notice that he had been killed in action the 28th day of April.