Monthly Archives: April 2015

29 April 1915; Thursday

At work as usual. Busy all day. Finished late.

Germans using poisonous gases1  2 & made an advance near Ypres at this time.

  1. The first successful, large scale use of gas was in the German attack at Langemarck in the NW. angle of the Ypres Salient, on 22 April; initially against French African troops, but Canadian and British troops were soon involved. German prisoners had given detailed accounts of the preparations, but the French Corps commander, Balfourier, would neither believe the warnings nor transmit them to the British. 

  2. See also: Wikipedia: Chemical weapons in World War I and Wikipedia: Second Battle of Ypres 

25 April 1915; Sunday

At chapel in the evening. Slept in in the morning. Mr Mullens preaching in the morning and Mr Hewitt at night. At Sunday School as usual. Had short walks. Fine day. Aeroplane over three times. Went to Whittakers’ to tea. Fine night. Willie appeared at chapel in khaki.

23 April 1915; Friday

At work as usual. Got a sales book a bit further up today. Read a bit at night. Bought the “Roadmender.”1 Shipping between England & Holland stopped. Had short walk last thing. Mr Chadwick called at the shop. Edward off all day.

  1. The Roadmender”, by ‘Michael Fairless’ (Margaret Fairless Barber, 1869 – 1901), is a consolatory Christian work, written by Fairless/Barber in her last illness and published 1902. It was immensely popular (reprinted 31 times in 10 years) before the era of effective modern medicine and during WW1; old copies still abound. See also: Arthur Linfoot’s Library 

The Roadmender

Cover ImageThe Roadmender is a 1902 Christian spiritual book by Margaret Barber, writing under the pseudonym Michael Fairless. The book became a popular classic, running through 31 editions in 10 years.

The book is written as a series of meditations on the road to heaven with the author adopting the persona of The Roadmender.

Arthur Linfoot bought a copy of The Roadmender on 23 April 1915 and subsequently lent his copy to Willie Wanless on 6th May, the same day as his friend and colleague Bob Brotherston had died of wounds incurred during battle in France.