Tag Archives: War

Diary entries which mention aspects of the war (other than naval and aerial warfare, which are separately tagged) which ALL noted but in which he had no direct involvement.

4 October 1918; Friday

Up about 7 o’clock. Transport moved off in the morning. Spent a lot of time picking blackberries. Terrific fighting down south and very slow advance. Fell in at 3 o’clock and marched to Brian1 where we entrained. Detrained at Warlincourt and marched to Souastre and arrived there early morning. No blankets and nearly frozen in the night.

  1. Brian: perhaps Brias (B), 5km NNE. of St Pol (A; near Grecourt? see 2 October); Warlincourt would be Warlincourt-lès-Pas (C), 11km E. of Doullens, just S. of the Arras road, and Souastre (D) is 16km E. of Doullens (Michelin square H6 and H7 respectively) – just off the NW corner of the 1916 Somme battle area. 

3 October 1918; Thursday

[Written above date: “Franchie’s birthday 11th inst.”]

Up about 9 o’clock. Parade at 10 o’clock. Got back to Pernes and went in with Billy Truman. Had some tea at the Y M and then eggs and chips at a restaurant. Returned about 8 o’clock.

Very heavy fighting down south. Heard that the Germans were falling back from La Bassée.

27 September 1918; Friday

Up about 7 o’clock. Betts and Duggins went up and I and Pugh were left behind. Messed about the place a bit and turned in at night about 9. Walked to headquarters with Harvey.

Splendid news from Palestine1 and Macedonia. 40 thousand Turks prisoners. Heard that the Americans had advanced in the Argonne2 and taken 10 thousand prisoners.

  1. Palestine: See notes on 23 and 24 September

  2. The beginning of the Meuse-Argonne Offensive

25 September 1918; Wednesday

Up at 7 o’clock. On fatigue during the morning. Rather dull and showery but got out fine. Heard that the Americans had taken a redoubt†. Pulled out of bed at mid-night to go up the line. Dressed hurriedly and went up as far as the A D S. Got down in a marquee. Jerry shelled in the night and came very near. We ran into the dressing room. After a while lay down again. He shelled near but not so much as earlier in the evening.

24 September 1918; Tuesday

Up at about 7.30 and on guard 8 to 12. Taken off guard in the afternoon and put on a party of stretcher bearers and again taken from that later on. Received letter from Leishman. Heard that 25000 Turks and 260 guns were captured in Palestine1 and that the Bulgarians were in full retreat2.

  1. Palestine: The Battle of Nablus again? See yesterday

  2. Bulgarians in retreat: This diary entry was written towards the closing stages of the Vardar Offensive, which led to Bulgaria signing the Armistice of Salonica and thus withdrawing from the war on 29 September. 

4 September 1918; Wednesday

Up at 7 o’clock and on parade and duty at 8 o’clock. Heard that Walsh, Stothard & Gilmour were killed1 and Whittaker badly wounded. Fine day. Good news from all the battle front. John Dory went on leave.

  1. 341610 Private John Edward Walsh, 76886 Private William Stothard and 46674 Private Dennis Gilmour (the prior three links are to records on the Commonweath War Graves Commission site), all of the 58th Field Ambulance, had apparently been killed on 3 September.

    Privates Stothard and Gilmour are also listed on Lives of the First World War; Private Walsh is not.