A Family Postcard from Firle

Firle is a charming village a few miles east of Lewes in Sussex where a couple of great aunts of mine ended up living. My great aunts were young women in that Edwardian era, when the postcard was the equivalent of today’s text message. I was fortunate in that my gran was the hoarder and keeper, so I have the cards which Granny received. This one came from her sister Eliza (my great aunt) and was sent in 1907. It shows the village shop in Firle.


It is quite possible that Eliza knew the people on the card, for she lived just down the road behind the three standing men. Before we look at the message, let’s look at my ‘recent’ photo of the same scene.#image004

Frighteningly, what I call recent was actually in 2002 which is 14 years ago but wonderfully, the shop was still the shop and remarkably unchanged. That was my car of the time, parked where the horse and cart had been in the old image.

And now let’s look at the back of the card.


Granny’s rather grand address was, indeed, quite grand. But she’d have been a junior maid in service at the time, aged just 15. Eliza, the card sender, on the other hand, was a married woman with children. And it was just like her to make the message awkward for the postman to read. But with modern technology we can turn it round easily.


Hmm! The message hardly seems top secret.

D E (Dear Ethel) I hope you are well as it leaves us about the same. I have sent you the Post Office this time. I will let you know when we go in new house. Goodbye from your sister E (Eliza) XXXXXXXXX.

Well, a lovely image of the old shop, and a message to try to keep a young sister, in service, happy.


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One Response to “A Family Postcard from Firle”

  1. Janet Says:

    This postcard is a gem. Lucky you to have had a collector in the family.

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