Charles Jarvis : First World War

Charles Jarvis : First World War

Charles Jarvis, the son of a coastguard, was born in Fraserburgh, Scotland. After attending Carnoustie School, Jarvis joined the British Army and served overseas before leaving in 1907.

On the outbreak of the First World War Jarvis joined the Royal Engineers. He was immediately sent to France with the British Expeditionary Force and arrived at Mons on 22nd August, 1914. The following day Lance-Corporal Jarvis was one of the members of the men sent to destroy eight of the bridges over the Mons-Conde Canal. Although coming heavy fire from German fire, Jarvis managed to blow up the bridge at Jemappes.

For his actions at Mons Jarvis was awarded the Victoria Cross. He returned to England and was presented with the medal at Buckingham Palace on 13th January, 1915.

In January 1917 Jarvis was dismissed from the British Army after over 17 years service. He claimed in an interview with the London Star that the authorities had done this to avoid paying him the pension granted to men with 18 years' service.

After leaving the army Jarvis found work as a labourer. During the Second World War he was employed at Portsmouth Dockyard.

Charles Jarvis died in Dundee on 19th November 1948.

Lance-Corporal Jarvis and Sapper Neary were detailed with B Company Royal Scots Fusiliers, and ordered to prepare one of the bridges for demolition in case of retirement. During the work of placing the charges of the fire of the enemy gradually increased in violence. Lance Corporal Jarvis despatched Sapper Neary to obtain the exploder and leads, which were in the possession of another party under Corporal Wiltshire.

Lance-Corporal was called upon to destroy the bridge, but was still without the exploder and leads, as the sapper had not returned. He crawled out over the bank, and got into the street, where he commandeered a bicycle from a Belgian, and was riding towards the market square to find the exploder himself, when he met Captain Wright, who was then wounded in the head. Wright told Jarvis to go back to the bridge and be prepared to connect up the leads, as he would fetch them in a motor car, and taking the bicycle from Jarvis, went off to fetch the necessary articles.

Jarvis returned to his former position to await the return of Captain Wright. After working for about one and half hours Jarvis did finally manage to successfully fire the charges for the bridge's demolition, which probably saved the lives of many British troops.

The work on the bridge was done under fire from three sides. Near the bridge I found Captain Theodore Wright, wounded in the head. I wished to bandage him but he said, "Go back to the bridge." It must be done - and so I went."

Corporal Charles Jarvis the first hero who received the Victoria Cross in the present war, has over 17 years' service to his credit. In ten months (November, 1917) he would be entitled to the pension granted to men with 18 years' service. A year ago (January 1916) he answered a call for volunteers for munition work, and as a skilled mechanic he has been so employed since. Last week he was suddenly presented by the civilian manager of the works where he is engaged with his discharge from the enemy. The effect of that is to deprive him of the opportunity of becoming eligible for his 18 years' pension.

I want to know what I am discharged for? I am 35 years old, perfectly sound, and perfectly ready to go out to the front again if I am wanted. I do not believe that the authorities are acting legally in discharging me in this way. I have the best possible character from my officers. I mean to expose the meanness of the practice, and see whether the public approves such treatment for the men who went through the first and heaviest fighting of the war.


Ancestors of Charles Jarvis Holmes of Marshfield and Rochester MA

The family bearing this name is one of long and honorable standing in New England and as well across the water in old England, its history there reaching back to the year 1066. One John Holmes, who took his surname from Stockholm, the capital of his native country, as the story is told, was the founder of the Holmes family. He is credited with having gone to England as a volunteer, with the army of William, Duke of Normandy, in the year above named.

“Being of ancient family and of handsome conduct, he was noticed by William himself, and made a captain in his army and, having performed his part to the satisfaction of the Conqueror, he was rewarded by him with an estate in Yorkshire. He and his descendants continued in possession of this estate until the reign of King John, in the beginning of the thirteenth century, at which time Hugh Holmes was the head of the family. Incurring the displeasure of King John in the controversies of that turbulent period, Hugh fled to the northward, and found safety at Mardale, having for refuge a cave, still known as ‘Hugh’s Cave.’ He subsequently purchased the Dalesmans estate, which is still in possession of his descendants.” In time, in the early days of the peopling of New England, there came a number to our shores of the Holmes name, and from two of them, John Holmes of Plymouth and William Holmes of Marshfield, the most of the families bearing the name of Holmes in the Old Colony are descended, and of them said the genealogist Vinton,

“So far as the present writer (Vinton) is aware, they have always sustained a high character for intelligence, thrift and all the moral virtues.”

But it is the purpose of this article to treat with one branch only of the Marshfield-Rochester family, the head of which was the late Hon. Charles Jarvis Holmes, lawyer and public servant of distinguished official relation, as was his father before him, Hon. Abraham Holmes, and as was also the former’s son excepting that he was a banker and financier instead of a member of the legal profession, and a man of high standing and long service in his calling at Fall River, where he was succeeded by his only son, Charles L. Holmes, now treasurer of the Fall River Five Cents Savings Bank, an institution his father had served in the same official relation for approximately fifty years, and who is worthily wearing the family name and sustaining its reputation.

There follows in chronological order and in detail the family history and genealogy of the Holmes family alluded to above, beginning with the John whose traditional history has already been given.

John, of whom nothing further is known except that he was father of Robert, of Paul Holme. He and wife Annas had sons:

  1. Sir Oliver
  2. Ralph, the latter marrying Frances, and had descendants residing in Huntingdon, Yorkshire.

Sir Oliver, of Paul Holme, controller to Empress Maud and knighted 18th Stephen (1152). He was father of Robert, of Paul Holme, Esq., living 22d Henry II. (1175). He married Ursula, daughter of Sir John Frismarsh, Knight, and had

  1. Oliver (who married a daughter of Sir John Rison, Knight, of Ravenser)
  2. John
  3. Robert
  4. Thomas
  5. Henry

John, of Paul Holme, Esq., temporary Henry II. (22d Henry, 1176). He married Sebastian or Keterine, daughter of Sir John de Lascello, Baron of Sayer, and had issue:

Stephen, knighted at Barhamstead, 22d Henry III., 1237, married Millicent, daughter of Sir Richard Sutton, Knight, and dying Jan. 22, 1254, left

John, Esq., his son and heir. About 1286 he married Ancoretta, daughter of Peter de la Twyer, Esq., and had:

  1. Sir Richard
  2. Elen, who married Sir Stephen Burstwick
  3. Ann, who married Sir William Acton
  4. Margaret, who married Rob Thorpe
  5. Elizabeth, who married Sir Peter Frothingham
  6. Ursula, who married Roger Welnick

William of Orange grants to Master John Holm all his rights in toft and eight butts in Holme, with marsh called Salem (Salun?) Marsh tested by William Vavasour of Thorne, Robert Boothby, etc. [Holderness Records].

Sir Richard, son of John Holme and Ancoretta de la Twyer, was knighted 1st Edward II., and was alive 18 Edward II. (1324). He married Joan, daughter of Sir William St. Quintine, Lord of Brandsburton, and had:

  1. John
  2. Bryan
  3. William “de Howom” (Holme-on-the-wolds) (who married Isabell was a freeman in 1353 bailiff in 1366-67 mayor in 1374 M. P. in 1387, and had a son, Thomas de Howom).

Sir Bryan, knighted by Edward III. and master of his buckhounds in 1328, had for ensign a hound’s head, er., or. He married Dame Ellen of Blois and had: Robert. He died 22d Edward III., the same year he had armorial bearings for taking the King of Scots prisoner.

Robert, son of Sir Bryan, married Julian, daughter of Sir William Rockley, and dying 22d Richard II left:

  1. Robert
  2. Brian
  3. Richard (who married a daughter of William Harwich, 22d Richard II)
  4. William

William, son of Robert Holme, alias Holmes, Esq., lived 6th Henry IV., 1405, and married Joan, daughter of Sir William Marflet, of Ripley issue

John was of Paul Holme, was seized of Thorngumbold in right of his wife, 8th Henry VI. (1429). He married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Adam Wastneys, and she died before her husband, probably in 1429, when he had the estate of Thorngumbold. Issue:

John, of Thorngumbold, married Jane, daughter of Jno. Ellerher, of Risby, sergeant-at-law, about 20th Henry VI. He had Thorngumbold “jure matris.” Issue:

  1. Richard
  2. John
  3. Robert
  4. Jane (who married Constable of Frismarsh)
  5. Anne (who married William Hodgskin)

Robert, of Paul Holme, 1485-86, married Margaret, daughter of Sir John Constable, of Halsham, and Laura, daughter of Henry Fitz Hugh, Lord of Ravensworth. Issue:

  1. Robert
  2. John, who married Elland and had
    1. John (who died young)
    2. Joane (who married Ralph Rokeby)
    3. Anne (who married William Cheney)

    William, third son of Robert Holme, entails his estate and honors at Paul Holme. He married Catherine, daughter of Sir Xr Hildyard, of Winstead, Knight, and had son

    William, of Paul Holme, Esq., who married Catherine. Issue:

    1. Agnes, who married Paul Alkirk
    2. William
    3. Johan, who married John Kelsby
    4. John, of Paul Holme

    The last named, John, married Anne, daughter of Ralph or John Aiseley, of South (?) Darston, and had among other children Edward, who was twice married and had by his second wife (Ann Strickland) a son Henry, born in 1570, who among other children had son Christopher, born in 1591 one son of this Christopher, Henry, had a son Rev. Henry, who was father of Stephen, who left an only daughter, Betty, who married Rev. James Torre, their son Henry assuming the name of Holme the other son of Christopher, Christopher of Skefling, had among other children a son John, who left two sons, Henry, who died unmarried, and Rev. John, who also died unmarried, in 1775.

    William, son of William, was born about 1528 and married June 8, 1556, Margaret, daughter of Stephen Warwick. They had children:

    Of these, William married May 8, 1591, Sarah, daughter of Thomas Hills, and had sons:

    1. William, born June 3, 1592, emigrated to Plymouth before 1632, served in the Pequot war, was lieutenant in Scituate, returned to England and later to Boston, Mass., where he died Nov. 12, 1649. He left no issue, and willed to daughters of his brother Thomas farm in Scituate, provided they came to New England they were then living in London,
    2. Thomas, born May 12, 1593, married Henriette, daughter of William Martin, and had:
      1. Rachel, born Jan. 3, 1615
      2. Bathsheba, born July 23, 1617

      Stephen, born March 22, 1557, married Aug. 4, 1590, Elizabeth, daughter of Israel Richardson, and had issue:

      1. William, born Jan. 3, 1592
      2. Israel, born March 19, 1593, who married June 7, 1616, Annie Warrick
      3. Elizabeth, born Jan. 8, 1595

      William Holmes, born Jan. 3, 1592, near Holme, East Riding of Yorkshire, England, emigrated before 1636 to New England, living in Scituate as early as 1641. Pope has him at Scituate in 1636. He was on the list of those in Scituate who were “able to bear arms” in 1643 one of the “Conihassett Planters” in 1646 (a company of twenty-six individuals who in 1646 purchased a tract of land in Scituate), and a householder before 1647. He was a freeman of Plymouth Colony, 1658. In 1661 he removed across North river into Marshfield, and died there 9th of 9th month, 1678, aged eighty-six years. Elizabeth, his widow, died there Feb. 17, 1689, in her eighty-sixth year As shown previously, Mr. Holmes was a kinsman of Lieut. William Holmes, who was at Plymouth in 1632 appointed to instruct the people of Plymouth and Duxbury in arms in 1635 commander in the Pequot war, 1637, and afterward major in Massachusetts.

      The children of William Holmes of Marshfield were:

      1. John, who married Mary Wood
      2. Josiah, who married Hannah Sampson
      3. Abraham, baptized in 1641
      4. Israel, baptized in 1642, who married Desire Dotey Sherman
      5. Isaac, baptized in 1644, who married Anna Rouse
      6. Sarah, baptized in 1646
      7. Rebecca, baptized in 1648
      8. Mary, baptized in 1655, who married a Cheney, of Newbury
      9. Elizabeth, baptized in 1661, who married Thomas Bourne

      Abraham Holmes, son of William, born in 1640, baptized in 1641, married (first) Elizabeth, daughter of Rev. Samuel Arnold, pastor of the church in Marshfield (1659-1693). She died in May, 1690, and he married (second) April 19, i695, Abigail Nichols, of Hingham. Mr. Holmes lived in Marshfield till about 1698, when he moved to Rochester with his brothers Josiah and Isaac. He was town treasurer of Rochester in 1698. His house stood a fourth of a mile southeast from Snow’s Pond, on the westerly side of the road. He died April 17, 1722, aged eighty-two years. His children, all born to his first wife, were:

      1. Elizabeth, born in 1666
      2. Isaac
      3. Bathsheba, who married Samuel Doggett
      4. Rose, who married Thomas Blanchard, of Andover
      5. Susanna
      6. Experience, born in 1681

      Experience Holmes, son of Abraham, born in 1681, in Marshfield, Mass., married Patience Nichols. He settled just within the line of Dartmouth, in what was afterward Fairhaven, on a farm which was afterward known as the Parish farm, having been purchased by the parish for the use and occupancy of Rev. Thomas West. He died in 1754, aged thirty-four. His widow married Deacon Ephraim Wood, of Middleboro. The children of Experience and Patience were:

      1. Elizabeth (married Jethro Ashley)
      2. Sarah (married Elias Miller, of Middleboro)
      3. Experience

      Experience Holmes (2), son of Experience, born June 9, 1716, in Rochester, Mass., married Dec. 13, 1737, Hannah, born Nov. 4, 1715, daughter of Abraham Sampson, of Duxbury. After his mother’s second marriage Mr. Holmes lived with his grandmother during the remainder of her life. After this he lived with Rev. Peter Thatcher of Middleboro. After his marriage he occupied the homestead of his father in Rochester. Here his first child, Susannah, was born. He lived subsequently at several other places in the town and from 1757 to 1782 he owned and occupied a farm in the Third parish of Rochester, near the Chaddock meeting-house. Mr. Holmes is described as a man of small size, never weighing more than one hundred and thirty-six pounds, but was agile and quick in his motions, and in wrestling, which was then considered a great accomplishment, few could excel him. He was an expert with a gun and fond of hunting. Although his education was limited he had strong reasoning powers, was well versed in the Bible and in polemical divinity, so that few clergymen could baffle him in argument. He had native wit and was prompt at repartee. He embraced Baptist sentiments in 1762. He died March 14, 1794, aged seventy-eight. His wife Hannah died Nov. 30, 1797, aged eighty-two. Their children were:

      1. Susanna, born in 1739, married Hezekiah Purington
      2. James, born in 1741, died in 1754
      3. Bathsheba married Joseph Rounseville
      4. Elizabeth, born Sept. 30, 1746, married Job Sherman
      5. Experience, born Aug. 14, 1749, died in 1768
      6. Abraham, born June 9, 1754, is the next in the line of descent

      Hon. Abraham Holmes (2), son of Experience (2), born June 9, 1754, in Rochester, Mass., married Dec. 26, 1776, Bethiah, born Feb. 16, 1759, daughter of Ichabod and Bethiah (Blackwell) Nye, all of Rochester. Mr. Holmes was admitted to the bar of Plymouth county in April, 1800. He was then forty-six years old. He had previously been president of the court of Sessions, and though not regularly educated for the profession the members of the bar voted his admission in consideration of “his respectable official character, learning and abilities, on condition that he study three months in some attorney’s office.” He continued in practice till August, 1835, when eighty-one years of age, with a considerable degree of reputation and success. He was regarded as an acute and learned lawyer. He was full of anecdote and traditional lore, abounding in wit and humor. In June, 1834, when eighty years old, he delivered a very interesting address at New Bedford, to the bar of Bristol county, on the rise and progress of the profession in Massachusetts, giving sketches of the early lawyers, etc.

      Mr. Holmes was a member of the Executive Council of Massachusetts, May, 1821-22, and May, 1822-23, under Governor Brooks. After his death the members of the bar of Bristol, Plymouth and Barnstable counties, at a meeting held at Plymouth Oct. 25, 1839, paid a most respectful tribute to his talents, learning and character, and adopted a resolution expressing a high sense of his professional worth as a man

      “whose mind was enriched with various learning, whose memory was a repository of the most valuable reminiscences whose legal attainments gave him high professional eminence and whose social qualities were an ornament of the circle of friendship during a long life of integrity and usefulness.”

      Mr. Holmes passed his life in Rochester, and died Sept. 7, 1839, aged eighty-five. His wife Bethiah died Dec. 14, 1832, aged seventy-four. Their children were:

      1. Bathsheba, born May 18, 1779, who died unmarried in 1853
      2. Rosalinda, born Aug. 10, 1784, who married Anselm Bassett, Esq.
      3. George Bonum Nye, born March 1, 1788, who married Elizabeth Valentine
      4. Charles Jarvis, born May 9, 1790

      Hon. Charles Jarvis Holmes, son of Hon. Abraham, born May 9, 1790, in Rochester, Mass., married (first) Oct. 17, 1814, Cynthia Crocker. She died Aug. 17, 1828, aged forty, and he married (second) in 1830 Louisa, daughter of Ebenezer and Bathsheba (Crocker) Haskell, who died Oct. 11, 1846, aged forty-four years.

      Mr. Holmes studied law in the office of his father in Rochester, Mass., and was admitted to the Plymouth bar in 1812. He practiced his profession in his native town more than a quarter of a century was identified with the feelings and interests, and enjoyed the confidence of his fellow citizens. He represented Rochester in the Legislature of Massachusetts in 1816, 1817, 1819, 1820, 1824, 1826, 1827, 1831 and 1832. He was a senator from Plymouth county in 1829 and 1830 a member of the Executive Council in 1835, and an elector of President and Vice President in 1836.

      Desiring a larger field Mr. Holmes removed to Taunton in 1838. In 1842 he was appointed by President Tyler collector of the customs of Fall River, to which place he removed. He remained there till toward the close of his life. He filled at various periods other offices of importance, as master of chancery, commissioner of bankruptcy, et cetera.

      “was a man of ardent friendships, genial temperament, of a high sense of honor. His intellectual powers were strong and well cultivated, although he was not educated at college. He was a careful reader of the English classics, and a thorough student of the law. In political life he was ardent, sanguine, strong in his convictions and indefatigable in maintaining them. He wrote his own epitaph, closing with these words: ‘By profession a lawyer by practice a peacemaker.'”

      Mr. Holmes died at Fall River, Mass., May 13, 1859, aged sixty-nine. He was buried in the same cemetery in Rochester where repose the remains of his father, grandfather, great-grandfather and great-great-grandfather – five generations. His children, both born to the second marriage, were:

      1. Emma Louise, born Nov. 4, 1830, died March 31, 1881. Her husband, Daniel Stillwell, of Fall River, to whom she was married Aug. 20, 1856, was born Feb. 11, 1825, and died Dec. 20, 1878. They had one daughter, Louisa Holmes, born April 17, 1858, who married Sept. 6, 1882, John H. C. Nevius, of New York and they have had children born as follows:
        1. Stillwell, July 23, 1883
        2. Louisa Condit, Feb. 10, 1886 (died Aug. 29, 1906)
        3. Richmond, Oct. 10, 1887
        4. Marian H., June 24, 1892
        5. John L., Dec. 28, 1896

        Hon. Charles Jarvis Holmes (2), son of Hon. Charles Jarvis and Louisa (Haskell) Holmes, was born March 4, 1834, in Rochester, Mass., and at the age of five years accompanied his father and family on their removal to Taunton, Mass., and four years later to Fall River, to which point they then removed and that city continued to be his home until his death. He attended the public schools of Fall River and was one of the first class formed in the Fall River high school, from which he was graduated in 1853. After this event he entered the service of the Massasoit Bank in Fall River, and at twenty-one years of age was chosen treasurer of the Fall River Five Cents Savings Bank, a relation he sustained to it at the time of his death, his term of service covering a period of over fifty years.

        In the same year that young Holmes became treasurer of the Savings Bank he was chosen cashier of the Wamsutta Bank, which in May, 1864, became the Second National Bank, a position he held during the existence of the institution, his official career with it being one of approximately thirty-seven years, the bank going out of business through his influence. As the years came and went he grew in knowledge and experience in the financial affairs of a great industrial center and developed great financial ability, and as a writer expresses it was for the long period of fifty years the very capstone of Fall River’s financial structure and as a banker especially he stood in the closing years of his life one of the city’s historic figures. He is credited with saving Fall River from one of the worst financial disasters ever visited upon it. As the father of the law known among bankers as the Stay Law Mr. Holmes performed a great public service.

        It was not only as a financier that Mr. Holmes stood out prominently in the life of Fall River. He was a man of great executive ability and was interested and officially connected with a number of the enterprises of his city. He was president of the King Philip Mills, and of the Sagamore Manufacturing Company, and a director of the Border City Mills. He was active and prominent in public affairs and interested in the city’s moral and religious life, a most useful member of society. He represented Fall River in the lower house of the Massachusetts Assembly in 1873, and was a member of the Senate in 1877 and 1878. For some thirty and more years he was chairman of the committee of Associated Savings Banks of Massachusetts. Some years before his death, at the time it was proposed to tax the savings banks’ deposits for internal revenue, Mr. Holmes alone represented Massachusetts at the hearing in Washington, in protest of the measure. He was for sixteen years a member of the school board and exerted a strong influence in the educational affairs of Fall River. For the long period of forty-three years he was a trustee of the Fall River Free Public Library. He was for many years a member of the board of overseers of the poor. He served for a period as treasurer of the Fall River hospital. He was for years chairman of the civil service commission.

        The religious faith of Mr. Holmes was that of the Congregational denomination. In 1857 he joined the Central Congregational Church at Fall River and all through life was prominent in that church. From 1877 until the time of his death, covering a period of nearly thirty years, he was a deacon in the church.

        “As banker, alderman, member of the city government and of several of its most important subordinate boards, of finance, schools, libraries and charities, as member of both branches of the General Court of Massachusetts, as president and director of manufacturing and industrial organizations, of charitable and social bodies, as officer and leader in church and Sunday schools, there is scarcely a life in this city which has not in some measure felt the stimulus of his abounding energy, his devotion, his ardent faith, his higher religious and spiritual nature.”

        On May 4, 1858, Mr. Holmes was married to Mary Anna, daughter of Joshua and Joanna (Lawton) Remington, and to them came three children:

        1. Mary Louisa, born May 15, 1859
        2. Anna Covell, born March 5, 1861, are unmarried
        3. Charles Lincoln was born May 21, 1866

        Mr. Holmes died at his home in Fall River, Mass., Feb. 26, 1906.

        Charles Lincoln Holmes, born May 21, 1866, is a prominent business man of Fall River. He is married to Anna Stamford Pratt, daughter of Judge Calvin E. and Susan (Ruggies) Pratt, the former a judge of the Supreme court of New York. Mr. and Mrs. Holmes have three children:


        Battle of Mons

        War: The First World War known as the ‘Great War’.

        Contestants at the Battle of Mons: The British Expeditionary Force (BEF) against the German First Army.

        Commanders at the Battle of Mons: Field-Marshal Sir John French commanding the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) with Lieutenant-General Sir Douglas Haig commanding I Corps and General Sir Horace Smith-Dorrien commanding II Corps against General von Kluck commanding the German First Army.

        Size of the Armies:
        The BEFcomprised 2 corps of infantry, I and II Corps, and a cavalry division 85,000 men and 290 guns.
        Both corps of the BEF and the Cavalry Division were in action, although the bulk of the fighting was carried out by Smith-Dorrien’s II Corps along the line of the Mons Canal (Le Canal du Centre or Le Canal de Condé). II Corps comprised around 25,000 men.

        General von Kluck’s First Army comprised 4 corps and 3 cavalry divisions (160,000 men) and 550 guns.

        Winner of the Battle of Mons:
        The British were compelled to fall back to comply with the withdrawal of their French allies on their right and to avoid encirclement, leaving the Mons canal line in German hands. However heavy casualties were inflicted on the German infantry during their attacks on the British positions, although the numbers were insignificant compared with casualties in the battles later in the war.

        British infantry receive the German attack: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        Armies, uniforms and equipment in the Battle of Mons:
        The armies on the Western Front in the Great War from 1914 were the Germans against the French, the British and the Belgians. In 1918 the Western Allies were joined by the United States. Other nationalities took part on the side of the Western Allies on the Western Front in small numbers: Portuguese, Poles and Russians. From 1915 onwards significant numbers of Canadians, Australians, Newfoundlanders and members of the Indian Army fought in the British line of battle. The first regiments of the Indian Army arrived in the Ypres area at the end of 1914.

        The Great War began in August 1914. Britain despatched the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) to France to take up a position on the left of the French armies, with its concentration area around the fortified town of Mauberge, south of the Belgian border.

        At the end of the 19 th and beginning of the 20 th Century the British Army’s day to day task was the ‘policing’ of a worldwide empire. With increasing tension on the continent of Europe, from 1900 onwards the British Government remodelled the British army to provide a field force capable of taking part in a continental war. This force was to comprise 6 divisions of infantry and a cavalry division. Initially, in August 1914, the BEF took only 4 infantry divisions to France with the remaining 2 infantry divisions following later in the year.

        In the late 1870s Edward Cardwell, the British Secretary of State for War, set up the 2 battalion regimental system which was designed to provide 1 battalion in garrison abroad with a supporting battalion at home in Britain or Ireland. Four line regiments comprised 4 battalions while the 3 old Foot Guard regiments comprised 3 battalions. The rude shock of the Boer War in South Africa between 1899 and 1901 caused the British Army to remodel its training to emphasise the importance of small arms marksmanship and weapon handling. Regular musketry courses brought skills to a level where British infantrymen were capable of firing up to 20 or 30 rounds a minute of accurate rifle fire, the standard being 12 rounds a minute. This rate of fire was to give the Germans a shock in the opening battles of the Great War and create the impression that the British were armed with many more machine guns than they actually possessed. Opening volleys at this rate were referred to as the ‘mad minute’. British cavalry also received extensive training in firearms use, enabling them to fight effectively in a dismounted role, when required.

        The regular British Army comprised some 200 infantry battalions and 30 cavalry regiments. The Royal Artillery comprised batteries of field and horse artillery. The Royal Garrison Artillery manned the heavy 60 pounders guns.

        As part of the army reforms the old concept of ‘service for life’ was abandoned. Soldiers served 7 years with the colours, with the option of extending to 14 years, rarely taken up other than by successful non-commissioned officers, and then 7 years service in the reserve after the soldier returned to civilian life. The home battalions were heavily under manned as recruitment into the army was always inadequate. With the outbreak of the Great War units filled up with reservists who made up a substantial proportion of most battalions and cavalry regiments, in some cases up to 70%.

        The rifle carried by British troops, both infantry and cavalry, was the .303 Lee Enfield bolt action magazine rifle. The Lee Enfield was a robust and accurate weapon that continued in service with the British Army until the 1960s.

        The British Royal Field Artillery was equipped with the 18 pounder quick firing field gun and the Royal Horse Artillery with the smaller equivalent 13 pounder gun, both effective weapons remaining the mainstay of British field artillery for the rest of the Great War.

        The Royal Field Artillery also operated field batteries armed with the 4.5 inch howitzer.

        The British heavy gun operated by the Royal Garrison Artillery was the 60 pounder. The British Army lacked heavier guns comparable with the weapons used by the Germans and the French during the early period of the war.

        Each British infantry and cavalry regiment was issued with 2 machine guns. These weapons immediately dominated the Great War battlefield.

        German attack on the Nimy Bridge at the Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War: picture by W.S. Bagdatopoulos

        The German Army at the Battle of Mons:
        War between France and Germany was considered inevitable following the annexation of Alsace and Lorraine by Germany after the Franco-Prussian War in 1870 to 1871. The armies of each country were from 1871 onwards organised with such a war in mind. With the pact between France and Russia it was clear that Germany, with its ally Austria-Hungary, would have to fight on an eastern front against Russia as well as the western front against France.

        The German Army was formed on the same basis as all the main European armies, with a force at the colours to be massively augmented by reservists on mobilisation. These reservists served with the colours and then joined the reserve on return to civilian life. On mobilisation the German army increased to a force of around 5 million men, while the French army comprised around 3 million men.

        Full-time military service in Germany was universal for males and comprised 2 years with the colours or 3 years in the cavalry and horse artillery. There was then 5 or 4 years service in the Reserve followed by 11 years in the Landwehr. The army was organised into 25 active army corps each of 2 divisions and a number of reserve corps and divisions in support of the active formations. There were 8 cavalry divisions, each with jäger infantry supporting units.

        The German armaments company of Krupps supplied the German army with a range of highly effective artillery of all weights. Machine guns were widely issued. The German army was well advanced in radio communication and in the use of airplanes for reconnaissance and artillery spotting.

        It is clear that none of the armies involved in the war at this early stage anticipated the impact of the modern weapons they were deploying and in particular the impact of machine guns and concentrated artillery fire.

        125th Würtemberg Infantry Regiment of the German Army during exercises in around 1905: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War: illustration by Major General von Specht

        Background to the Battle of Mons:
        The trigger for the Great War, or First World War, was the murder of the heir to the Austrian throne, Arch-Duke Ferdinand, and his duchess in Sarajevo on 28 th June 1914 by Gavrilo Princip, a member of a gang of Serbian Nationalists who objected to the annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina by Austria. Reacting to the assassination, Austria declared war on Serbia, following which Russia declared war on Austria in support of their fellow Slavs in Serbia. In accordance with its treaty with Austria, Germany declared war on Russia and in accordance with its treaty with Russia, France declared war on Germany.

        It was apparent from the outset of the Great War that the principal theatres of war would be the Western Front between France and Germany and the Eastern Front between Germany and Austria and Russia. The Austrian campaign against Serbia was of less significance militarily although important symbolically.

        General von Schleiffen in the 1890s devised the German plan for invading France. The Schleiffen plan provided for a line of German formations wheeling through Belgium, outflanking the French armies by marching around the west side of Paris, while other German units held the French armies in a line from the Swiss frontier to the Belgian border.

        Once it was clear that the Germans were invading Belgium, Great Britain declared war on Germany and Austria. In the period from 1900 to 1914 Britain and France had developed the ‘Entente Cordiale’ on the assumption that the 2 countries would be fighting Germany as allies, although no formal pact was entered into.

        British infantry, before moving up to the front line: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        Each nationality at the outset of the war seems to have had the expectation that the war would be finished by Christmas 1914 with their own victory. One of the few to foresee that the war would be long and hard fought was Lord Kitchener, appointed British Minister for War on 6 th August 1914.

        Russia began its mobilisation on 29 th July 1914. France and Germany began their mobilisation on 1 st August.

        At the outbreak of war the German Commander in Chief was the Kaiser, Wilhelm II. The actual commander was General von Moltke, the German Chief of Staff. The German strategic plan was to take advantage of the slowness of Russian mobilisation to commit the preponderance of German forces against France and to switch them to the Eastern Front once France was defeated. The Germans expected the defeat of the French to be quickly achieved. The speed of the Prussian defeat of France in 1870 led the Germans to believe the same could be achieved in the next war.

        While nominally applying the Schlieffen Plan von Moltke made a significant change. The change was that the wheeling German armies would pass to the east of Paris, not to the west as von Schlieffen intended. This would have the consequence that the German right wing would not be able to swing well clear of the French left flank.

        It was von Schlieffen’s intention that the armies on the German left, well away from the Paris envelopment, would give ground and not make any attempt to push back the French forces opposing them. This important element of the plan was also abandoned in the face of clamours from the commanders on the German left wing to be permitted to attack the French and push them back.
        Germany declared war on France on 3 rd August 1914. On the next day German troops crossed the border into Belgium. In the light of Germany’s invasion of Belgium, Britain declared war on Germany the same day and began mobilising.

        4th Dragoon Guards on the Mons Canal waiting for the infantry to take over their positions: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        On 6 th August 1914 the decision was taken to send the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) to France, comprising 2 Corps and a cavalry division commanded by Field-Marshal Sir John French. I Corps commanded by Lieutenant-General Sir Douglas Haig comprised 1 st and 2 nd Divisions. II Corps commanded by Lieutenant-General Sir John Grierson comprised 3 rd and 5 th Divisions. The Cavalry Division was commanded by Major-General Allenby. 4 th Division would remain in Britain and the 6 th Division would remain in Ireland, for the time being.

        A significant element of the Royal Flying Corps accompanied the BEF and from an early date provided useful information from reconnaissance flights on German movements. This information was often insufficiently exploited by the higher command in the early period of the war.

        There was no commitment in France of the British Territorial Force, which comprised full regiments of part-time soldiers, in the first weeks of the War, although they were soon sent to France to act as line of communication troops and were thrown into the fighting around Ypres at the end of 1914. Lord Kitchener had an antipathy to the Territorial Force regiments and chose later to raise completely new battalions as ‘Kitchener’s Army’.

        Units from the Indian Army arrived in France later in 1914 in time for the ‘Race to the Sea’, which ended in the savage fighting around Ypres.

        The advanced party of the BEF crossed to France on 7 th August 1914 and the BEF itself crossed to the French ports of Le Havre, Rouen and Boulogne between 12 th and 17 th August and moved forward to its concentration area between Mauberge and Le Cateau, near the Belgian border, where it was assembled by 20 th August.

        On 16 th August 1914 the Germans captured Liége after an heroic defence by the Belgian Army.

        On 19 th August 1914 the German Kaiser commanded the destruction of Britain’s ‘Contemptible little army’ (The translation from the German might also allow ‘Contemptibly little army’. Bismarck, the German Chancellor in the 19 th Century had memorably said that ‘If the British Army lands of the coast of Germany I will send a policeman to arrest it.’)

        The Germans expected the BEF to land in the area of Calais before moving in a south-easterly direction and von Kluck’s First Army was deployed to meet this threat. The German navy informed the German army command shortly before the Battle of Mons that the British had not yet landed in France. Von Kluck was unaware that the BEF lay in the path of his advance south into France.

        The French Army formed between the borders of Switzerland and Belgium, in order from right to left: First Army, Second Army, Third Army, Fourth Army and Fifth Army (under Lanrezac). The BEF was expected to come up on the left flank. The French Cavalry Corps (under Sordet) moved into Belgium.

        The French Commander-in-Chief was General Joffre. The BEF was not subordinated to the French Command but was expected to co-operate with it. The relationship between the British Commander-in-Chief, Sir John French, and General Joffre was ill-defined and unsatisfactory.

        In preparation for the execution of the Schlieffen Plan the German armies were formed up with their First Army under von Kluck on the right, advancing through Belgium Second (under Bulow) and Third (under Hausen) Armies also advancing through Belgium Fourth Army advancing on Sedan Fifth Army advancing on Verdun from Thionville and Metz with Sixth and Seventh Armies in Southern Lorraine holding the left wing up to the border of Switzerland.

        The 3 Armies on the Western Front exercised different policies in relation to their reserve troops. The British policy is set out above. The reservists filled out existing regular formations. For the French and German armies reservists completed regular formations but also formed reserve units up to divisional and corps strength. The French did not intend to rely upon these units and kept them well back in reserve.

        The Germans in contrast put their reserve units into the fighting line with the result that they deployed a substantially stronger force than the French, even with their commitments on the Eastern Front.

        Map of the Battle of Mons 23rd August 1914 in the First World War: map by John Fawkes

        Account of the Battle of Mons:
        On 17 th August 1914 Lieutenant-General Sir John Grierson, commanding the British II Corps, died of a heart attack on a train in France. His command was taken over by General Sir Hubert Smith-Dorien DSO from 22 nd August.

        On 20 th August 1914 Sir John French, the British Commander-in-Chief, reported to General Joffre, the French Commander-in-Chief, that the concentration of the BEF was complete.

        Matters were not going well for the French Army. The French First and Second Armies suffered severe reverses at the hands of the German Sixth and Seventh Armies on the far right of the French line.

        The BEF moved forward towards the Belgian border on 22 nd August 1914. Sir John French’s intention was to establish a defensive line along the high road from Charleroi to Mons with the French on the BEF’s right. This proved impracticable as the German movement to the BEF’s left occupied Charleroi and the French Fifth Army under Lanrezac fell back on the right. The BEF took up positions with the British II Corps along the line of the Mons canal and I Corps on the right, angled back from the line of the canal.

        As the BEF moved up into position in the area of Mons the Cavalry Division provided a screen in front of the advancing infantry divisions.

        Captain Hornby, 5th Dragoon Guards, a successful polo player in India before the war: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        22 nd August 1914:
        The British cavalry covered the gap between the 2 British infantry corps to the east of Mons. A squadron of the 4 th Dragoon Guards commanded by Major Tom Bridges was the first British unit into action. Bridges’ men encountered German cavalry of the 4 th Cuirassiers on the road north of Obourg. The Germans withdrew pursued by Lieutenant Hornby with 2 troops. Hornby caught up with the cuirassiers near Soignies, which lies to the north east of Obourg and does not appear on the map, and after a brisk fight forced them into flight. The pursuing British Dragoon Guards were brought up short by fire from a regiment of German Jӓgers. The British dismounted and returned fire until Bridges received orders to return to his regiment and the fight ended. The squadron of the 4 th Dragoon Guards arrived in the brigade lines with captured German soldiers, horses and equipment to the cheers of the brigade. Lieutenant Hornby received the DSO.

        At the left end of the British line a squadron of the 19 th Hussars, the divisional cavalry of the 5 th Division, and a company of cyclists engaged the advancing German cavalry at Hautrage all day.

        Other British cavalry regiments, the Scots Greys and 16th Lancers, engaged the German cavalry screen.
        During the night of 22 nd August 1914 the Cavalry Division, less the 5th Cavalry Brigade, moved across to the left flank of II Corps to the area of Thulin-Elouges-Audregnies, a march of around 20 miles. The 5 th Cavalry Brigade remained with Haig’s I Corps on the right of the BEF.

        British infantry waiting to advance in the Mons area: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        The Mons positions:
        The Mons Canal (‘Le Canal du Centre’ or ‘Le Canal de Condé’) runs from Charleroi on the Sambre River in the east to Condé on the Scheldt or L’Escault River. For the section from Mons to Condé the canal follows a straight line running east to west. To the immediate east of Mons the canal forms a semi-circular bulge or salient to the north, with the village of Nimy at the north west of the bulge and Obourg on the north east side.

        The Mons canal ran through what was in 1914 an important coal mining area and its route was, in the area occupied by the BEF, almost continuously built up and covered with small enclosures, pit-heads and slag heaps for a mile or so to either side of the canal. There were some 12 bridges and locks in the length of the canal between Condé and Obourg, including 3 bridges in the salient, a railway and a road bridge at Nimy and a road bridge at Obourg.

        British infantry waiting to move forward in the Mons area: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        During 22 nd August 1914 the British II Corps moved up to the section of the Mons Canal between Obourg and Condé, 3 rd Division taking the right flank with 5 th Division on its left.

        Of the 3 rd Division the 8 th Brigade occupied the area on the east side of the canal salient and to its south, with the battalions from the right: 2 nd Royal Scots, 1 st Gordon Highlanders, both in position to the south east of the canal, the Gordons occupying a feature of high ground call Bois La Haut with the Royal Scots as the connecting battalion to I Corps 4 th Middlesex lined the canal in the area of Obourg, with 2 nd Royal Irish Regiment in reserve.

        Soldiers of the 1st Lincolns in position to the south of Mons: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        The 9 th Brigade lined the canal salient through Mons with the battalions in line from the right: 4 th Royal Fusiliers, 1 st Royal Scots Fusiliers (1 st RSF) and 1 st Northumberland Fusiliers with 1 st Lincolns in reserve.

        Royal Fusiliers entraining in France: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        The 13 th and 14 th Brigades of the 5 th Division lined the Mons Canal extending the BEF’s position to the west. From the left flank of 3 rd Division: 13 th Brigade comprising 1st Royal West Kents (1 st RWK) and 2 nd King’s Own Scottish Borderers (2 nd KOSB) with 2 nd King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry (2 nd KOYLI) and 2 nd Duke of Wellington’s Regiment (2 nd DWK) in reserve. 14 th Brigade: 1st East Surreys positioned north of the canal, 2 nd Manchesters and 1 st Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry (1 st DCLI) along the canal with 2 nd Suffolks in reserve.

        On the left of 5 th Division the independent 19 th Brigade came up to the Mons Canal during the 23 rd August with, in line from the right 2 nd Royal Welch Fusiliers (2 nd RWF), 2 nd Middlesex and 1 st Cameronians with 2 nd Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (2 nd ASH) in reserve. This brigade joined the 6 th Dragoon Guards, Carabineers, on the canal.

        The 7 th Brigade formed the II Corps reserve in the area of Cipley.

        Of the British I Corps, the 1st Division occupied positions along the Mons-Beaumont Road and the 2 nd Division held positions at Harveng (4 th Brigade), Bougnies (5 th Brigade) and Harmignies (6 th Brigade).
        Several authorities, including Brigadier Edmonds in the ‘Official History of the War’, describe the British positions on the Mons Canal as an ‘outpost line’, stating that the intention was to hold positions on the higher and more open ground a mile or so to the south of the canal.

        A Company, 4th Royal Fusiliers in the market square of Mons on 22nd August 1914, the day before the Battle of Mons. Soon after this photograph was taken the battalion moved up to the Mons Canal line at Nimy

        The British battalions that moved up to the canal ‘dug in’ with varying degrees of success. It is apparent that it was the high command’s intention to use the canal as an obstacle to the German advance. The Royal Engineers were ordered to sink all barges in the canal and to prepare the bridges for demolition.

        There were some 12 or more bridges and locks in the section of the canal covered by the British line and this was a difficult order to comply with in the few hours available. In the confusion of the advance some important demolition stores were missing. The Sappers did what they could in the circumstances.

        Soldiers of 1st Northumberland Fusiliers preparing street barricades in the Mons area before the fighting started on 23rd August 1914

        While the Royal Engineers worked on the canal the infantry and gunners did their best to turn a confused suburban industrial landscape into a workable defensive line with positions both north and south of the canal. The artillery batteries in particular found it hard to find positions for their guns with a reasonable field of fire and to establish practicable observation posts. It was assumed that the numerous slag heaps must provide good vantage points, but the numbers of them interfered with sight lines and many were found to be too hot to stand on.

        Soldiers of 1st Northumberland Fusiliers preparing street barricades in the Mons area before the fighting started on 23rd August 1914

        A curious and sad feature was that the Belgian population was largely unaware that their home was about to be turned into a battlefield. 23 rd August 1914 was a Sunday and began with ringing of bells, much of the population hurrying to church, with trains bringing in holiday makers from the cities. Many of these civilians were caught up in the day’s fighting.

        Soldiers of 1st Northumberland Fusiliers preparing street barricades in the Mons area before the fighting started on 23rd August 1914

        23 rd August 1914:
        The opening episodes of the battle were confused by the lack of knowledge each side possessed of the deployment of the other. Von Kluck’s First Army marched through Belgium in a south westerly direction at a speed that gave it little time to assess the situation in its path. It seems that the German High Command was unaware that the British were in the line in front of them, assuming that the BEF was still not in France, although Von Kluck’s orders to First Army for 23 rd August state that a British cavalry squadron had been encountered and a British airplane shot down and captured.

        As the BEF advanced north from its assembly area around Mauberge cavalry patrols and reconnaissance flights by the Royal Flying Corps warned of large German troop concentrations, but the reports that the BEF II Corps with 3 divisions was about to be attacked by 6 infantry and 3 cavalry divisions of von Kluck’s First Army appear to have been discounted by Sir John French.

        The German forces advancing on the Mons Canal line comprised the German 3 rd , 4 th and 9 th Corps with the 9 th Cavalry Division from the German 2 nd Cavalry Corps all of von Kluck’s First Army. That was 3 corps with cavalry from another advancing on Smith-Dorrien’s II Corps. The advance by the cavalry division was across the canal to the east of Mons and the division took no part in the direct attack on the canal line.

        During the 23 rd August the 17 th Division of von Kluck’s 9 th Corps crossed the canal to the east of the salient beyond the reach of the British defensive line and attacked the Gordons holding the high ground on Bois La Haut, so that it was simply a matter of time before the canal salient became untenable by the British, regardless of the success of their action against the regiments of the German 9 th Corps attacking across the canal from the north.

        In one of the first incidents of the German attack on the Mons Canal line in the early hours of the morning of 23 rd August 1914 a German cavalry officer with 4 troopers rode up to an outpost of 1 st DCLI, ½ mile north of the canal on the road to Ville Pommeroeul, appearing out of the mist. A British sentry shot the officer and 2 of the troopers before they could get away.

        The initial German assault on the canal line, by the 18 th Division of the 9 th Corps, fell on the canal salient north-east of the city of Mons the point defended by the 4 th Middlesex, the 4 th Royal Fusiliers and the 1 st RSF. Heavy German artillery fire from the high ground to the north of the canal supported the attack, with fire direction given from spotter planes flying over the battlefield, a new technique not yet adopted by the British and French. The German infantry advanced on the canal in massed formations headed by skirmishers.

        Private Carter, D Company, 4th Royal Fusiliers on sentry duty in Mons on 22nd August 1914: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        For the first time the Germans encountered the facility with which the British troops used their rifles the ‘Mad Minute’ in which individual soldiers could fire up to 30 aimed rounds in a minute from their .303 Lee Enfield rifles. This fire coupled with supporting machine guns decimated the advancing German formations.

        The Boer War in 1899 to 1901 taught the British Army the importance of concealment when under fire and the art of concealed movement around the battlefield. The British infantrymen were in well-hidden trenches and positions in the urban landscape from which they poured a devastating fire on the advancing German infantry.

        Brigadier Edmonds in the Official History of the Great War comments that British officers attending German manoeuvres in the years before the war watched the German technique of massed infantry attack and foresaw what would happen when such a form of advance was used against British infantry.

        While there were clear disadvantages in attempting to defend the urban area around Mons, the canal provided the British regiments with a defensible obstacle. The canal barges and boats had been sunk by the Royal Engineer field companies. The canal was sufficiently deep to prevent the Germans from wading across so that access to the British lines could only be gained by the permanent bridges and locks or across bridging units brought up and put in place by the attacking troops, not a practicable proposition under such heavy fire. Several road and railway bridges crossed the canal and each of these became the focus of the German attacks.

        The pattern of the day was repeated along the canal line from east to west initial German attacks by massed infantry formations that were shot to pieces, followed by more careful, but increasingly heavy attacks, using open formations of infantry supported by artillery fire, that increased in weight and accuracy during the day, and by machine guns.

        Artillery support was provided for the British infantry by Royal Field Artillery batteries firing 18 pounder quick firing guns positioned in sections and single guns behind the canal.

        For each side these opening days of the war were the first experience of quick firing gun fire and the troops were taken aback by the all pervading effect of shell-fire. While the German guns took some time to range on the British line, once they had done so the British positions seemed to be constantly smothered by bursting shells. The myth was born of armies of civilian spies ‘spotting’ for the German batteries. It took time for the reality to be acknowledged that sophisticated artillery observation from the ground and air was directing the guns.

        The initial focus of the German attack was the bridges around the canal salient the Obourg Bridge held by the 4 th Middlesex and the Nimy Bridge and the Ghlin Railway Bridge held by Captain Ashburner’s company of the 4 th Royal Fusiliers, supported by the battalion’s 2 machine guns commanded by Lieutenant Maurice Dease.

        On the right of the canal salient the Germans put in a series of heavy attacks on the 4 th Middlesex at the Obourg Bridge. The positions around the bridge were held by Major Davey’s company with a second company under Major Abell coming up in support, losing a third of its strength in the process.

        Lieutenant Maurice Dease 4th Royal Fusiliers, awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross for his handling of his machine gun at the Nimy Bridge: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        German advance to the canal was in close company formations of the German 18 th Division, presenting a good target to the Middlesex riflemen and machine guns. In the opening attacks the leading German companies were mown down as they attempted to reach the canal bridge. The Germans fell back into cover and after half an hour resumed the assault in a more open formation.

        Equally heavy German infantry attacks in close columns fell on the 4 th Royal Fusiliers holding the Nimy Bridge Captain Ashburner’s company supported by 1 of Lieutenant Dease’s machine guns. These columns were decimated and the Germans fell back into the plantations along the north side of the canal. After half an hour of re-organisation the attack was renewed in more open order. While the Royal Fusiliers held the attacks the pressure increased with the build-up of German infantry and the weight of the supporting artillery fire.

        Further platoons of the Royal Fusiliers came up to support Ashburner’s company, all suffering heavy casualties of officers and men. Dease continued to work his machine gun although wounded three times.

        On the left of the Nimy Bridge, the Germans attacked the Royal Fusiliers on the Ghlin Railway Bridge where Private Godley manned the battalion’s second machine gun. Again the Germans suffered heavy casualties as they attempted to force the bridge. The battalion was provided with supporting fire by 107 th Battery, Royal Field Artillery.

        Private Godley firing his machine gun at the attacking German infantry at the Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War: picture by W.S. Bagdatopoulos

        To the west of Mons the German attack on the straight section of the canal took longer to develop and was less intense.

        The German 6 th Division launched an attack against 1 st RSF and the positions of the 1 st Northumberland Fusiliers on the north bank of the canal, while to the west of Jemappes the Germans advanced on the bridge at Mariette, marching up to the bridge in column of fours. The massed Germans were shot down by Fusiliers waiting in their positions to the north of the canal. The attack was renewed in a more open order but was again repelled.

        German pontoon bridge in place over the Mons Canal at Jemappes after the Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        The German infantry waited in cover while guns were brought up to fire on the Fusiliers’ positions. The German attack was then renewed. Whether deliberately or by accident a crowd of Belgian school children headed the German advance, preventing the British infantry from firing. Pressing through the children the Germans forced the Fusiliers across the canal to the south side from where the German attack was again driven back.

        The next battalion to the west in the British line, the 1 st RWKs, were engaged north of the Mons Canal, from where they were providing support to the divisional cavalry squadron of the 19 th Hussars. The 1 st RWKs eventually fell back to positions behind the canal. The attacking troops, the Brandenburg Grenadiers, then focussed on the St Ghislain Bridge but were repelled by the RWKs supported by 4 guns of 120 th Battery RFA positioned on the canal tow path. The guns were forced to withdraw but the heavy fire brought down on the Brandenburgers effectively ruined the 3 battalions of the regiment.

        To the west of the RWKs, the 2 nd KOSB held the north canal bank, the battalion’s 2 machine guns positioned on the top storey of a house on the south side of the canal. The battalion was able to pour a heavy fire into the German infantry forming up on the edge of a wooded area on the north bank, until it was forced to fall back across the canal.

        One of the regiments attacking the 2 nd KOSB was the German 52 nd Infantry Regiment. Once the KOSB were back on the south side of the canal this regiment delivered an attack against the railway bridge held by 1 st East Surreys, advancing with 2 of its battalions in mass formation. These 2 battalions suffered the same fate as all the German mass attacks against the Mons Canal line, cut down by rifle and machine gun fire from the concealed British infantry.

        9th Lancers in Mons on 22nd August 1914: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        By the end of the morning the 8 British battalions engaged along the Mons Canal were still in place in spite of the efforts of 4 German divisions.

        Around midday the Germans infantry began to attack along the whole line of the straight section of the canal west of Mons, sworking their way forward using the numerous fir plantations and villages as cover.

        At around 3pm the British 19 th Brigade arrived by train at Valenciennes and came up to occupy positions at the western end of the canal line, taking over from the single cavalry regiment, 6 th Dragoon Guards (the Carabineers). Soon afterwards the German attack increased in intensity.

        The main area of crisis for the BEF in the day’s fighting was the Mons salient where the British battalions were subject to attack and fire from front and flank, although the main influence on the future deployment of the BEF was the increasing withdrawal of Lanrezac’s Fifth French Army on its eastern flank.

        At around midday the German IX Corps redoubled its attacks on the Mons Canal salient, its artillery bombarding the British from positions to the north and east of the line. The German 17 th Division after crossing the canal to the east of the canal salient, beyond the reach of the British defences on the canal line, attacked the 1 st Gordons and the 2 nd Royal Scots positioned to the south of the canal and facing east. The attack was driven back but the increasing threat was clear.

        Soldiers of 1st Gordon Highlanders and 2nd Royal Irish Regiment at Mons on 22nd August 1914: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        The Germans, now over the canal in strength, were threatening the flank and rear of the 4 th Middlesex. The 2 nd RIR were ordered to move up to support the Middlesex. They did so, but any movement in the canal salient was difficult due to the heavy German artillery fire and it took them some time to work their way forward. The RIR’s machine gun section dispersed a German cavalry attack but was then wiped out by gunfire.

        It was clear that the BEF II Corps could no longer maintain a position along the canal with the Germans crossing the canal to the east of the British line, the French Fifth Army falling back on the British right and the Germans advancing on the BEF’s left. Orders were issued to II Corps to withdraw to the positions prepared to the south of Mons and behind the Haines River.

        At around 3pm the Middlesex and the RIR began to withdraw from the canal salient. The Royal Fusiliers and the RSF were already doing so. The withdrawal of the Royal Fusiliers was covered by the wounded Private Godley still firing his machine gun on the railway bridge. When it was time for Godley to follow the withdrawal he broke up the machine gun and threw the pieces in the canal. Godley crawled to the road and lay there until he was taken to the Mons hospital by some civilians, where he was captured by the advancing Germans.

        At around 4pm the 1 st DCLI, still positioned to the north of the canal, fell back across the canal after shooting up a large detachment of German cavalry advancing down the road from Ville Pommeroeul.

        Other British battalions maintained positions north of the canal until the general withdrawal began.

        In the evening the order was given to the British 5 th Division to retire from the canal line. Along the canal the British battalions began to withdraw by companies and platoons. Where there were bridges desperate attempts were made to destroy them. The Royal Engineers managed to destroy the road and railway bridges at St Ghislain and 3 further bridges to the west.

        At Jemappes, Corporal Jarvis of the Royal Engineers worked for an hour and a half under German fire to demolish the bridge with the assistance of Private Heron of the RSF, earning himself a Victoria Cross and Heron a DCM.

        Lance Corporal Charles Jarvis, of 57th Field Company Royal Engineers, preparing the demolition of the bridge at Jemappes, for which he received the Victoria Cross: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        At Mariette, Captain Wright RE persisted in trying to destroy the bridge although seriously wounded, winning himself a Victoria Cross. Companies of the Northumberland Fusiliers hung on to cover Wright’s attempts.

        At around 5pm the German IV Corps came up and attacked the 19 th Brigade on the western end of the canal line.

        Along the line the British regiments withdrew as the Germans pressed their attack, bringing up bridging pontoons to cross the canal.

        Captain Wright placing explosives under the bridge at Mariette in the Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War: picture by G.D. Rowlandson

        On the right the Middlesex and RIR experienced considerable difficulty in extricating themselves from the salient as German infantry were infiltrating through Mons to the open country south of the city. A strong German attack on the Gordons and Royal Scots on the Bois la Haut was repulsed with heavy German losses. Behind the high ground German infantry advancing through Mons ambushed the withdrawing 23 rd Battery RFA, but were driven off.

        Finally the German army command decided to let the British withdraw without further interference and bugles sounded the ‘Cease Fire’ along the German line, much to the surprise of the British.
        During the night the 2 corps of the BEF fell back to their new positions. The 8 th Brigade extricated itself from the canal salient and withdrew without further interference from the Germans.

        Initially II Corps fell back to the line Montreuil-Wasmes-Paturages-Frameries during the evening. In the early hours of the 24 th August the order was issued to II Corps to continue the withdrawal to the Valenciennes to Mauberge road, running west to east 7 miles to the south of the Mons Canal (at the bottom of the map to the south of Bavai).

        British transport passing the memorial to the Battle of Malplaquet, fought by the Duke of Marlborough on 11th September 1709 to the south of Mons, during the retreat: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        The need for this withdrawal was not easily understood by the British troops who considered that they had seen off the German attacks, but was necessary for the BEF to conform to the French Fifth Army on its right and to avoid encirclement by the German corps moving south on their left.

        This withdrawal was the beginning of the ‘Retreat from Mons’ which ended south of the Marne on 5 th September 1914.

        The Angels of Mons: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        Casualties in the Battle of Mons:
        British casualties were thought on the day to be much greater than in fact they were. This was due to the intense artillery fire on the British line, giving the expectation of high casualties, and to the confused nature of the withdrawal. Platoons and companies became separated during the night, rejoining their parent battalions hours later or during the next day. Total British casualties of the day’s fighting were around 1,500 killed wounded and missing. The casualties were suffered by II Corps and by 3 rd Division in particular. The 4 th Middlesex and the 2 nd Royal Irish Regiment suffered around 450 and 350 casualties respectively.

        German casualties are unknown with accuracy but are thought to have been around 5,000 killed, wounded and missing from the fighting along the Mons Canal Line.

        Wounded soldiers from the Battle of Mons back in ‘Blighty’: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        Aftermath to the Battle of Mons:
        The BEF retreated in compliance with Lanrezac’s French Fifth Army on their right. The retreat continued until 5 th September 1914, when the French counter-attack from Paris took place on the Marne and the Allied armies turned and pursued the Germans to the line of the Aisne River.
        The actions of the BEF in the various incidents are described in the next sections.

        ‘Pip, Squeak and Wilfred’: The 1914 Star (in the centre), the British War Medal and the Victory Medal awarded to Private Conway, 1st Battalion the Cheshire Regiment: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        Decorations and campaign medals:
        The 1914 Star was issued to all ranks who served in France or Belgium between 5 th August 1914, the date of Britain’s declaration of war against Germany and Austria-Hungary, and midnight on 22 nd /23 rd November 1914, the end of the First Battle of Ypres. The medal was known as the ‘Mons Star’. A bar was issued to all ranks who served under fire stating ‘5 Aug. to 23 Nov. 1914’.

        An alternative medal the 1914/1915 Star was issued to those not eligible for the 1914 Star.
        The 1914 Star with the British War Medal and the Victory Medal were known as ‘Pip, Squeak and Wilfred’. The British War Medal and the Victory Medal alone were known as ‘Mutt and Jeff’.

        The book ‘The Bowmen’ by Arthur Machen, the origin of the ‘Angel of Mons’ myth: Battle of Mons on 23rd August 1914 in the First World War

        Anecdotes and traditions from the Battle of Mons:

        • Walter Bloehm, a reserve officer in the German 12 th Brandenburg Grenadier Regiment which suffered heavy losses in its attack against 1 st Royal West Kent’s at St Ghislain, wrote in his memoir entitled ‘Vormarsch’: ‘Our first battles is a heavy, unheard of heavy defeat, and against the English, the English we had laughed at.’
        • The Angel of Mons: In September 1914 a journalist, Arthur Machen, published in the Evening Standard newspaper a story called ‘The Bowmen’ in which archers from the time of the Battle of Agincourt in 1415 assisted the British troops at Mons. The story was re-printed in parish magazines across Britain. The story gave rise to the legend, widely accepted as true, that there was angelic intervention on behalf of the British at Mons.
        • Lieutenant Maurice Dease, the machine gun officer of 4 th Royal Fusiliers received a posthumous Victoria Cross for his actions in assisting in the defence of the 2 bridges at Nimy in the Mons Canal Salient on 23 rd August 1914.
        • Private Sidney Godley was one of the gunners in Lieutenant Dease’s machine gun section. Godley continued to work his gun at the Nimy bridges, although wounded, remaining in action while the rest of his battalion withdrew. Unable to move, Godley was taken to Mons Hospital by local civilians where he was captured by the Germans. He was awarded the Victoria Cross, presented to him by King George V in 1919 after his release from prison camp.
        • Captain Theodore Wright, Royal Engineers, received a posthumous Victoria Cross, in part for his repeated but unsuccessful efforts to ‘blow’ the bridge at Mariette. The 2 field companies of the Royal Engineers of which Wright was the adjutant, the 56 th and 57 th , were given the responsibility of destroying 10 to 12 bridges across the Mons Canal. Due to the closeness of overwhelming numbers of German troops only 1 bridge, at Jemappes, was destroyed. Wright died after being severely wounded on the Aisne on 14 th September 1914.
        • Lance Corporal Charles Jarvis, Royal Engineers, a member of 57 th Field Company achieved the destruction of the bridge at Jemappes and received the Victoria Cross.

        References for the Battle of Mons:

        Mons, The Retreat to Victory by John Terraine

        The First Seven Divisions by Lord Ernest Hamilton

        The Official History of the Great War by Brigadier Edmonds August-October 1914

        The previous battle in the First World War is the British Expeditionary Force (BEF)

        The next battle in the First World War is the Battle of Mons (2 nd Day): Elouges


        No. 2 Construction Battalion

        Black Canadians have a long and honourable tradition of patriotism, sacrifice and heroism in the British and Canadian Armed Forces.Following the outbreak of the First World War, Canadians flocked to recruiting stations. From Nova Scotia to British Columbia,hundreds of Black volunteers, eager and willing to serve, were turned away from enlisting in what they were told was a “White man’s war.” The No. 2 Construction Battalion was created after several appeals and protests to top military officials.

        History of Black Canadians in the Armed Forces

        Black Canadians have long demonstrated loyalty to king and country by volunteering for military service. During the American Revolution (1775–83), the British Crownencouraged enslaved people to desert their American masters and join the British lines. Eager to escape the shackles of enslavement, thousands heeded the call and worked as labourersfor the British, while others worked in combat units. The Black Company of Pioneers, for instance, was raised by the British and based in the American colonies — it served throughout the war (see Black LoyalistsLoyalists).

        During the War of 1812, Black soldiers helped defend Upper Canada against American invaders. Anumber of volunteers in the Niagara region were organized into the Company of Colored Men, who played an integral role in theBattle of Queenston Heights. Many Black soldiers in the War of 1812 were former slaves who escaped to Upper Canada to find freedom.

        A member of the 104th (New Brunswick) Regiment of Foot. An illustration of Black Loyalist Richard Pierpoint.

        By the 1850s, Black soldiers began receiving military honours for their bravery. William Neilson Hall was one of the first Canadians to be awarded the Victoria Cross — the British Empire’s highest award for valour. Hall, a Black seaman from Horton Bluff,Nova Scotia, risked his life in the relief of Lucknow, India, on 16 November 1857.

        In 1860, before the American Civil War, approximately 600 Black people emigrated from California to Canada to escape racial persecution. They would settle in the colony of Vancouver Island.Unpopular with local residents due to the colour of their skin, they were denied the right to join the volunteer fire brigade and decided to organize a volunteer military force. Officially known as the Victoria Pioneer Rifle Corps, the all-Black forcewas the first organized troop in the history of Western Canada.

        (courtesy of the Royal BC Museum and Archives/C-06124)

        First World War

        Although Black men were not altogether welcome in the armed forces, there were those who served in a number of combat units during the First World War. This includes the 106th Battalion, Nova Scotia Rifles,CEF, which was authorized 8 November 1915. Recruits were drawn from Nova Scotia,Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Newfoundland. As the 106th Battalion began the recruitment process, protest erupted over Black volunteers.

        DID YOU KNOW?
        Jeremiah Jones enlisted with the 106th Battalion in 1916, when he was 58 years old (13 years above the age limit). As did many other underage and older enlistees at the time, Jones lied about his age when he signed up. Jones was recommended for a Distinguished Conduct Medal by his commanding officer for his heroic actions during the Battle of Vimy Ridge however, he did not receive the medal during his lifetime.

        Samuel Reese, a Black man from British Guiana living in Truro, was told he would only be accepted to the armed forces if he first recruited a certain number of Black soldiers. At thesame time, Reese was referred to Commanding Officer Lieutenant-Colonel W.H. Allen for enlistment in the 106th Battalion. Reese also reached out to Reverend William A. White for assistance. White was pastor of Zion Baptist Church in Truro, and he in turn appealed directly to Allen to assist young Black men with the enlistment process. Reverend White made a verbal agreement to put his efforts into recruiting Black men throughoutNova Scotia.

        Recruitment poster for the No. 2 Construction Battalion.

        In December 1915, the federal government declared that enlistees could not be refused based on their race. This proclamation did not sit well with several white volunteers, who refused to sign up and fight alongside Black soldiers. As there was no officialpolicy for discrimination, recruiting officers were ultimately responsible for selection. Allen felt strongly that a segregated battalion would be the best solution however, from December 1915 to July 1916, approximately 16 Black volunteers were acceptedinto the 106th Battalion.

        The Black soldiers were dispersed throughout the battalion’s four companies. On 15 July 1916, the battalion left for England aboard the RMS Empress of Britain. As was common practice at the time, the 106th Battalion was broken up to providereinforcements for front-line battalions that had suffered heavy casualties in France.

        Two soldiers washing their uniforms, September 1916. Photo by Henry Edward Knobel.

        Other CEF combat units containing Black volunteers included the 25th Battalion, the 102nd Battalion, the 1st Quebec Regiment and the 116th Battalion. There are a number of battles in which Black Canadians fought, including the Battle of Vimy Ridge and the Battle of Passchendaele (see Curley Christian).

        No. 2 Construction Battalion

        Two months after the outbreak of the First World War, the first contingent of Canadian troops arrived in Britain. Across Canada, large numbers of Black men were turned away at recruiting stations strictly on the basis of race (see Prejudice and Discrimination).

        Many were unwilling to accept this rejection and a battle for the right to fight for one’s country began to take shape. Several Black leaders and white supporters began to question recruiting policies and practices. Concerns were addressed to the highestlevels of both the civilian and military authorities. Defence minister Sir Sam Hughes and Major General G.W. Gwatkin received numerous letters requesting an explanation.

        After receiving word from Hughes that those who so desired could form a platoon in any battalion, J.R.B. Whitney, Black publisher of the Canadian Observer newspaper in Toronto, offered to create a unit of 150 Black soldiers. Despite rigorous recruitment and great interest from Black volunteers, Whitney quickly discovered that officers stationed at headquarters were not willing to accept the platoon and adamantlyignored Hughes’s memorandum.

        The struggle to form a separate platoon went on for two years. Casualties were reaching alarming proportions overseas and there was a lack of reinforcements. The issue of rejecting Black volunteers had reached the floor of the House of Commons,and many were awaiting a satisfactory response.

        On 11 May 1916, the British War Office in London called the governor general and expressed its willingness to accept a segregated unit.

        The No. 2 Construction Battalion was formally authorized 5 July 1916 as a unit of the Canadian Expeditionary Force. Due to the racial composition of the battalion,it was difficult to find a commander. Lieutenant-Colonel Daniel H. Sutherland, of River John, Pictou County, eventually accepted the position of Commanding Officer.

        The battalion was granted special authority to recruit throughout Canada. Nova Scotia provided the largest group, with more than 300 recruits. Enlistments also came from theUnited States and the British West Indies.

        Headquarters for the Black Battalion were first established at the Market Wharf in Pictou, Nova Scotia. On 9 September 1916, headquarters were relocated to Truro, Nova Scotia, as Sutherland felt the presence of a Black community would stimulate recruitment.

        Reverend William A. White was appointed chaplain and given the rank of honorary captain. The Williamsburg, Virginia, native was reportedly the only Blackofficer in the Canadian military at that time.

        Despite enthusiasm from hundreds of Black men, there was still great difficulty in recruiting the desired target of approximately 1,000 volunteers. This may be attributed to the rejection and humiliation Black men experienced when previously turned awayat recruiting stations the objection to serving in a segregated non-combatant labour battalion and the exclusion of Black immigrants, especially in Western Canada.

        In December 1916, Sutherland received word from Ottawa that the battalion was needed overseas immediately. Sutherland confirmed that the unit would be ready to depart the last week of February 1917.

        Library and Archives Canada / PA-003201 (modified from the original). Provided by The Vimy Foundation.

        Conscription

        On 29 August 1917, the Canadian government passed the Military Service Act to reinforce depleted troops overseas. With some exceptions, the Act made everyBritish subject between the ages of 20 and 45 who was, or had been, residing in Canada since 4 August 1914 liable for active service.

        Black men, who were turned away from enlistment due to the colour of their skin from 1914 to 1916, were now subject to conscription. Those embittered by racism and discrimination refused to respondto this new law. Many of these men were plucked from the streets and held against their will if they would not enlist.

        Forcing Black men to enlist contradicted the exclusion Black men initially faced, and many military authorities still wanted to maintain racial segregation. Despite training as infantry alongside White conscripts in Canada, many Black soldiers were placedin segregated units and assigned to labour duties upon their arrival in England.

        Details on the Front

        The Black Battalion embarked from Pier 2 in Halifax on 28 March 1917 aboard the SS Southland. Prior to dispatch, a high-ranking officer suggested the battalion be sentoverseas on a separate ship without a naval escort to avoid offending fellow passengers. The motion was rejected and the 19 officers and 605 other ranks, along with 3,500 non-Black troops from other units, arrived in Liverpool, England, following a 10-dayvoyage through submarine-infested waters.

        Four members of the Canadian Corps pose with ammunition before loading it into tramway cars to be taken up the line. Most black soldiers who served in the Canadian Expeditionary Force remained segregated in labour units. Few were allowed to serve in combatant roles.

        As a construction unit, the battalion was tasked with non-combat support roles, which included building roads, railway tracks and bridges, defusing land mines to allow troopsto move forward, removing the wounded from the battlefield and digging and building trenches.

        In early May 1917, orders were received to downgrade the battalion to a company because it had fallen under strength. A battalion is generally comprised of 600 to 800 soldiers, and the battalion had lost a number of men who had fallen ill or lost theirlives. The unit proceeded to France and the Swiss border, where it was attached to the Canadian Forestry Corps, CEF, and performed logging operations. Themajority of soldiers served at Lajoux in the Jura Mountains, while smaller detachments joined Forestry units at Péronne, a commune of the Somme department in Picardie in northern France, and Alençon, a commune in Normandy, France.

        Legacy and Significance

        The No. 2 Construction Battalion was officially disbanded on 15 September 1920. Their story represents a group of determined men who fought racism and discrimination at every turn for the basic right to serve one’s country. While most soldiers returned home from war as heroes, the men ofthe Black Battalion didn’t receive proper recognition until decades later.

        On 12 November 1982, Senator Calvin W. Ruck and the Black Cultural Society of Nova Scotia hosted a recognition and reunion banquet held at the Lord Nelson Hotel inHalifax for nine Black veterans of the First World War. Senator Ruck went on to write The Black Battalion 1916–1920: Canada’s Best-Kept Military Secret (1986), a book that details the story of the No. 2 Construction Battalion and profiles its veterans.

        Many veterans of the Black Battalion were buried in Camp Hill Cemetery in Halifax. Each grave was marked by a flat, white stone, forcing visitors to crouch down and grope the grass to find loved ones. In 1997–98, Senator Ruck successfully lobbied theDepartment of Veterans Affairs, and each soldier received a proper headstone and inscription in 1999.

        Other commemorations of the battalion include a permanent monument on Market Wharf in Pictou, an annual commemoration ceremony in Pictou, and an official stamp launched by Canada Post on 1 February 2016 to mark the 100th anniversary of theBlack Battalion. In addition, the film Honour Before Glory (2001), written and produced by Reverend William White’s great nephew Anthony Sherwood, and the poem “Black Soldier’s Lament” by George Borden — which has been published in Canadianand American Grade 10 textbooks — tell the story of the No. 2 Construction Battalion.

        The photograph was taken at the dedication of a plaque in memory of the members of the No. 2 Construction Battalion, an all-Black non-combat battalion that served in the First World War. The plaque was (and is) in the main hall of Queen's Park. Rev. Mrs. H.F. Logan and Rev. H.F. Logan, who spearheaded the campaign for the plaque, are at left of centre. Also included in the photograph are Rt. Rev. Samuel R. Drake, General Superintendent of the British Methodist Episcopal Conference Ontario Premier Ernest Charles Drury and Sir Henry Pellatt.

        Long before online quizzes and Myers-Briggs, Robert Woodworth’s “Psychoneurotic Inventory” tried to assess recruits’ susceptibility to shell shock

        In January 1915, less than a year into the First World War, Charles Myers, a doctor with the Royal Army Medical Corps, documented the history of a soldier known as Case 3. Case 3 was a 23-year-old private who had survived a shell explosion and woken up, memory cloudy, in a cellar and then in a hospital. “A healthy-looking man, well-nourished, but obviously in an extremely nervous condition. He complains that the slightest noise makes him start,” wrote Myers in a dispatch to the medical journal The Lancet. The physician termed the affliction exhibited by this private and two other soldiers “shell shock.”

        Shell shock ultimately sent 15 percent of British soldiers home. Their symptoms included uncontrollable weeping, amnesia, tics, paralysis, nightmares, insomnia, heart palpitations, anxiety attacks, muteness—the list ticked on. Across the Atlantic, the National Committee for Mental Hygiene took note. Its medical director, psychiatrist Thomas Salmon, traveled overseas to study the psychological toll of the war and report back on what preparations the U.S., if it entered the ever-swelling conflict, should make to care for soldiers suffering from shell shock, or what he termed “war neuroses.” Today, we recognize their then-mysterious condition as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), an ongoing psychological response to trauma that the Department of Veterans Affairs says affects between 10 and 20 percent of veterans of the United States’ War of Terror.

        “The most important recommendation to be made,” Salmon wrote, “is that of rigidly excluding insane, feebleminded, psychopathic and neuropathic individuals from the forces which are to be sent to France and exposed to the terrific stress of modern war.” While his suggestion to identify and exclude soldiers who might be more vulnerable to “war neuroses” seems today like an archaic approach to mental health, it resulted in a lasting contribution to popular psychology: the first personality test.

        Patients in the "neuro-psychological ward" of the base hospital at Camp Sherman in Ohio in 1918. (National Archives)

        When Myers named shell shock, it had a fairly short paper trail. During the German unification wars a half-century earlier, a psychiatrist had noted similar symptoms in combat veterans. But World War I introduced a different kind of warfare—deadlier and more mechanized, with machine guns and poison gas. “Never in the history of mankind have the stresses and strains laid upon the body and mind been so great or so numerous as in the present war,” lamented British-Australian anthropologist Elliott Smith.

        Initially, the name “shell shock” was meant literally—psychologists thought the concussive impact of bombshells left a mental aftereffect. But when even non-combat troops started exhibiting the same behavioral symptoms, that explanation lost sway. One school of thought, says Greg Eghigian, a history professor at Pennsylvania State University who’s studied the development of psychiatry, suspected shell shock sufferers of “maligning,” or faking their symptoms to get a quick exit from the military. Others believed the prevalence of shell shock could be attributed to soldiers being of “inferior neurological stock,” Eghigian says. The opinion of psychologists in this camp, he says, was: “When such people [with a ‘weak constitution’] get faced with the challenges of military service and warfare, their bodies shut down, they shut down.”

        Regardless of shell shock’s provenance, its prevalence alarmed military and medical leaders as the condition sidelined soldiers in a war demanding scores of men on the front lines. To add insult to injury, the turn of the century had brought with it “an increasingly uniform sense that no emotional tug should pull too hard,” writes historian Peter Stearns in his book American Cool: Constructing a Twentieth-Century Emotional Style, and accordingly, seeing soldiers rattled by shell shock concerned authorities. From the perspective of military and medical personnel, Eghigian explains, “The best and brightest of your young men, whom you staked so much on, they seem to be falling ill [and the explanation is] either they’re cowards, if they’re malingers, or they have constitutions like girls, who are historically associated with these kinds of ailments.”

        American soldiers at a hospital camp in France recovering from what was then known as war neurosis or war neuroses. The caption from 1919 specifies that the treatment center was "located away from the noise of the hospitals and crowds." (National Archives)

        Salmon’s call to screen out enlistees with weak constitutions evidently reached attentive ears. “Prevalence of mental disorders in replacement troops recently received suggests urgent importance of intensive efforts in eliminating mentally unfit from organizations new draft prior to departure from United States,” read a July 1918 telegram to the War Department, continuing, “It is doubtful whether the War Department can in any other way more importantly assist to lessen the difficulty felt by Gen. Pershing than by properly providing for initial psychological examination of every drafted man as soon as he enters camp.”

        By this point, the United States military had created neuro-psychiatry and psychology divisions and even established a school of military psychology within the Medical Officers Training Camp in Georgia. The syllabus for the two-month training reflects the emphasis placed on preliminary screening (as opposed to addressing the wartime trauma that today’s psychologists would point to as the root cause of many veterans’ PTSD). Of the 365 class hours in the course, 8 were devoted to shell shock, 6 on malingering, and 115 on psychological examination.

        The suggested schedule for the second month of the newly established school of military psychology in Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia. (From Psychological Examining in the United States Army, public domain)

        Less than two years after the United States entered World War I, around 1,727,000 would-be soldiers had received a psychological evaluation, including the first group of intelligence tests, and roughly two percent of entrants were rejected for psychological concerns. Some of the soldiers being screened, like draftees at Camp Upton in Long Island, would have filled out a questionnaire of yes-no questions that Columbia professor Robert Sessions Woodworth created at the behest of the American Psychological Association.

        Cornell psychologists who were employed to assess soldiers at Camp Greenleaf. (National Archives)

        “The experience of other armies had shown,” Woodworth wrote, “that liability to ‘shell shock’ or war neurosis was a handicap almost as serious as low intelligence…I concluded that the best immediate lead lay in the early symptoms of neurotic tendency.” So Woodworth amassed symptoms from the case histories of soldiers with war neuroses and created a questionnaire, trying out the form on recruits, patients deemed “abnormal,” and groups of college students.

        The questions on what would become the Woodworth Personal Data Sheet, or Psychoneurotic Inventory, started out asking if the subject felt “well and strong,” and then tried to pry into their psyche, asking about their personal life—“Did you ever think you had lost your manhood?”—and mental habits. If over one-fourth of the control (psychologically “normal”) group responded with a ‘yes’ to a question, it was eliminated.

        Robert Sessions Woodworth, the psychologist who was tasked with developing a test that would screen recruits for shell shock susceptibility. (WikiCommons, public domain)

        Some of the roughly 100 questions that made the final cut: Can you sit still without fidgeting? Do you often have the feeling of suffocating? Do you like outdoor life? Have you ever been afraid of going insane? The test would be scored, and if the score passed a certain threshold, a potential soldier would undergo an in-person psychological evaluation. The average college student, Woodworth found, would respond affirmatively to around ten of his survey’s questions. He also tested patients (not recruits) who’d been diagnosed as hysteric or shell shocked and found that this “abnormal” group scored higher, in the 30s or 40s.

        Woodworth had tested out his questionnaire on more than 1000 recruits, but the war ended before he could move on to a broader trial or incorporate the Psychoneurotic Inventory into the army’s initial psychological exam. Nevertheless, his test made an impact—it’s the great-grandparent of today’s personality tests.


        World War II and postwar life

        When the United States entered the war, many of Lindbergh’s America First peers joined the active duty military. Having publicly resigned his commission during the spat with Roosevelt, however, Lindbergh had effectively closed the door on that possibility. He appealed to General Arnold, but few in the War Department were willing to support someone whose loyalty to the United States appeared to be in question. Officials in the Roosevelt administration saw no military or political benefit in reinstating an officer who had spent almost two years vilifying them. Denied a role in the military, Lindbergh threw himself into the war effort as a civilian, serving as a consultant to the Ford Motor Company and to the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC later United Technologies Corporation).

        Lindbergh was dispatched to the Pacific theatre in April 1944, ostensibly to investigate performance issues with UAC’s F4U Corsair. Although he wore the uniform of a U.S. Navy officer, he lacked any rank or command authority, and, as a civilian, he was officially barred from firing weapons in combat. That legal distinction was largely ignored once he reached the front lines in New Guinea. As a “technician” and later as an “observer,” Lindbergh flew 50 combat missions—most of them in the cockpit of a P-38 Lightning—strafing and bombing enemy ground and naval targets. He was also credited with shooting down a Japanese “Sonia” attack aircraft. Lindbergh’s greatest contribution, however, was his technical expertise he developed a novel technique that reduced the P-38’s fuel consumption, dramatically increasing its already impressive operational range. After the end of the war in Europe, he accompanied a navy mission that investigated German aviation developments.

        Charles and Anne eventually had four more children following World War II, the family lived quietly in Connecticut and then in Hawaii. He continued as consultant to Pan American World Airways and to the U.S. Department of Defense. He was a member of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics and served on a number of other aeronautical boards and committees.

        He received many honours and awards, in addition to the Medal of Honor that had been awarded to him by a special act of Congress in 1927. For his services to the government, he was appointed brigadier general in the Air Force Reserve by Pres. Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1954. Lindbergh wrote several books about his life, including The Spirit of St. Louis (1953), which described the flight to Paris and gained him a Pulitzer Prize. He was also the author, with Alexis Carrel, of The Culture of Organs (1938), concerning the operation of the perfusion pump and related research on which he and Carrel had collaborated.

        The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica This article was most recently revised and updated by Letricia Dixon, Copy Editor.


        Charles Jarvis : First World War - History

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        Reign

        In 1625, Charles became king of England. Three months later, he married Henrietta Maria of France, a 15-year-old Catholic princess who refused to take part in English Protestant ceremonies of state.

        Charles&aposs reign was rocky from the outset. His good friend George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham, openly manipulated parliament, creating powerful enemies among the nobility. He was assassinated in 1628. Charles had to contend with a parliament that disagreed with his military spending. Religious tensions also abounded. Charles, a High Anglican with a Catholic wife, aroused suspicion among his Protestant countrymen. As a result of these tensions, Charles dissolved parliament three times in the first four years of his rule. In 1629, he dismissed parliament altogether. Ruling alone meant raising funds by non-parliamentary means𠅊ngering the general public. Meanwhile, religious oppression in the kingdom drove Puritans and Catholics to the North American colonies.


        Portraits

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-38-156).

        JESSEAU, Corporal, ARTHUR.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-11-140).

        JESSEAU, Corporal, ARTHUR.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-11-140).

        SMALL, Private, R. A.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. . A-11-153).

        SNOW, Private, CHARLES.

        "2616. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. 20th July 1917. Age 23. Son of Austin and Sophia Snow, of Water Street West, Harbor Grace, NL. AA. 3." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-11-156).

        BALLAM, Private, C.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-12-60).

        HAIG, GENERAL, Sir DOUGLAS. Portrait taken with his wife.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-18-6).

        FRASER Private, HAZEN.

        Royal Newfoundland Regiment handler of SABLE CHIEF, Newfoundland Dog and Regimental Mascot. SABLE CHIEF was killed in 1918. He was subsequently sent to a taxidermist for preservation before being sent back to Newfoundland. (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-19-26).

        STICK, R.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-37-93).

        SUMMERS, Captain, MICHAEL FRANCIS.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of wounds 16th July 1916. Age 26. Son of Michael and Catherine Summers, of 330, Water St., St. John's, NL. . II. A. 18." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published).(Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-37-94).

        O'NEILL, Private, AMBROSE.

        "2545. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of wounds 22nd April 1917. Age 29. Son of Paul and Mary O'Neill, of Admiral's Cove, Fermeuse, Newfoundland. II. P. 9." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-38-156).

        OUTERBRIDGE, Lieutenant, NORMAN.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Monchy-le-Preux 14th April 1917. Age 33. Son of Sir Joseph and Lady Outerbridge, of St. John's husband of Mary Evaleen Outerbridge (nee Shea), of 36, Monkstown Rd., St. John's, NL. . III. A. 47." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-39-1).

        WALSH, Private, HAROLD.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-39-10).

        QUINTON, Private, H.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-39-11).

        OAKE, Private, WILLIAM P.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-39-8).

        FINN, Private, PETER.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-8-45).

        STRONG, Lieutenant, ca. 1914.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-11-70).

        SABLE CHIEF with his handler Pte. HAZEN FRASER, ca. 1917

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-18-90).

        PROUSE, Private, WILLIAM (wounded November 6th)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        HISCOCK, Private, SAMUEL. (wounded November 1st)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        WIGHTON, Captain T. (Killed in action)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        FOWLOW, Private, RICHARD. (Died of Typhoid November 22nd)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        RICHARDS, Private, FINLAY. (wounded November 17th)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        SNOW, Private, WILLIAM.

        "750. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 12th October 1916. Son of John Snow, of St. John's, NL. . XII. C. 7." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        EVANS, Private, MICHAEL. (Wounded November 7th)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        HYNES, Private, JAMES JOSEPH.

        "1095. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 18th November 1915. Age 19. Son of John and Margaret Hynes, of 239, South Side, St. John's, NL. II. B. 21." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        BRAITHWAITE, Private, ERNEST (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        ELLSWORTH, Private, JAMES.

        "625. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Caribou Hill 4th November 1915. Age 26. Son of Henry and Amelia Ellsworth." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        SOMERTON, Private, FREDERICK CHARLES.

        "1342. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died on board H.M.H.S. [His Majesty's Hospital Ship] Guildford Castle of wounds received on Gallipoli 25th November 1915. Age 27. Son of Frederick and Caroline A. Somerton, of Trinity." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        BROWN, Private, JAMES MICHAEL.

        "1328. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 3rd December 1915. Age 23. Son of William and Mary Ann Brown, of Curling, Newfoundland. Native of Toronto, Canada. Special Memorial 34." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        SNOW, Lance Corporal, FREDERICK, M. M.

        "685. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Age 21. Son of George and Dinah Snow, of 116, Pleasant St., St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        TAYLOR, Private, WILLIAM BARTLETT.

        "1240. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of wounds 17th May 1917. Age 22. Son of Horatio and Annie Taylor, of St. John's (Southside), Newfoundland. XVIII. 0. 2." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-3-16).

        CARTER, 2nd Lieutenant, CYRIL B. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-51-39).

        RENDELL, Captain, HERBERT, M C.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 29th September 1918. Age 29. Son of Herbert and Lizzie Rendell, of St. John's, NL. . VI. F. 16." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        GORMAN, Private, JULIAN JOSEPH.

        "794. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of pneumonia 30th March 1915. Age 19. Son of James and Marguerite Gorman, of Harbour Breton, Fortune Bay, Newfoundland. Born at St. Pierre, Miquelon. G. 209." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        HALEY, Private, LEONARD. (wounded in September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        BUTLER, Private. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        CUMMINGS, Private. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        EBSARY , Private, FREDERICK ERNEST.

        "1138. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of meningitis 23rd September 1915. Age 19. Son of Newman and Sarah Ebsary, of 89 Southside, St. Johns, Newfoundland. D. 112." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        LOCKE, STANLEY.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-11-41).

        O'NEILL, Private, MICHAEL JOSEPH.

        "763. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Brother of A. O'Neill, of Mount Cashel, St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-17-3).

        WARREN, F.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-17-4).

        DOWNEY, H.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-17-5).

        PARSONS, Private, CHARLES ALBERT.

        "1471. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Son of Mrs. Matilda Parsons, of Stephenville Crossing, St. George." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-17-7).

        HOLLOWAY, Lieutenant, ROBERT PALFREY.

        "Mentioned in Despatches, Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Monchy-le-Preux, France, 14th April 1917. Age 30. Son of Robert Edwards and Henrietta Holloway, husband of Agnes Isobel Holloway, of 115, Summer Hill Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-25-34).

        LINCH, THOMAS.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-29-1).

        DRUKEN, THOMAS.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-29-4).

        SHARP, CHARLES.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-29-43).

        BUGDEN, Private, JOHN STANL. EY.

        "2815. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action near Marcoing 20th November 1917. Age 20. Son of Henry and Elizabeth Bugden, of Epworth, Burin." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-29-44).

        TAYLOR, Private, ALFRED PENNY.

        "897. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Age 22. Son of G. Hedley Taylor and Dorcas Guy Taylor, of St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-29-56).

        WILLAR, E.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-29-60).

        SNOW, Private, JOHN.

        "1923. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 1st July 1916. Son of Robert and Margaret Snow, of Harbor Grace Newfoundland. A. 27." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-42-32).

        HODDER, Private, STEWART.

        "2976. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Monchy-le-Preux 14th April 1917. Age 32. Son of James and Susie Hodder, of Horwood, Fogo." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. A-42-33).

        RICKETTS, Private, THOMAS.

        "4020. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 14th October 1918. Age 22. Son of Cornelius and Elizabeth Ricketts, of Westport, White Bay, Newfoundland. V. E. 26." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. E-42-6).

        RICKETTS, Sergeant, THOMAS.

        Born in Middle Arm, White Bay. According to the Dictionary of Newfoundland and Labrador Biography, (1990) Ricketts enlisted in Royal Newfoundland Regiment at age 15. He went to France in 1917. For his actions on 14 October 1918, he was awarded the Victoria Cross—the highest honour awarded by the British Military. He eventually returned to Newfoundland, began his studies at Memorial University College and continued to study pharmacy in Canada. He later operated a pharmacy on Water Street. There is currently a memorial dedicated to Ricketts in the same spot where his pharmacy once stood. Thomas Ricketts died in 1967. (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. F-48-18).

        MEWS, HENRY G. R.

        According to the Dictionary of Newfoundland and Labrador Biography (1990), Mews was born in St. John's in 1897. During the Great War, he served as an officer in the Royal Newfoundland Regiment. After the war, he moved to Canada but returned to St. John's in 1927 and entered the insurance business. He was first elected to City Council in 1943 and became Mayor in 1949. He remained Mayor until his retirement in 1965. The H.G.R. Mews Recreation Centre and the H.G.R. Mews Park have been named in his honour. Mews died in 1982. (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        DUBOURDIEU, JOHN.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        MOAKLER, M.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        MERCHANT, JOHN.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        NANGLE, Lieutenant Colonel, THOMAS.

        Roman Catholic Padre, Royal Newfoundland Regiment 1914-18. According to the Dictionary of Newfoundland and Labrador Biography ONL. ine, Nangle was ordained in 1913. He eNL. isted in the Newfoundland Regiment in 1915 and became the Regiment's padre in France. He was extremely popular with the soldiers and was active in recruitment campaigns in Newfoundland. After the war, he represented Newfoundland on the Imperial War Graves Commission and supervised the acquisition of land for the Beaumont Hamel Memorial Park and supervised its subsequent construction. He later left the priesthood, moved to Rhodesia and was elected into the Rhodesian parliament in 1933. (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. NA-2221).

        FREW, Captain ALEXANDER, R.A.M.C. Medical officer in trenches at Suvla Bay.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. NA-6045).

        WOODS, Private, JACK.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        ROBERTSON, J.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        TOBIN, Private, P.J.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-27).

        MARTIN, Private, CHARLES. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-1).

        EARLE, Private, W. E.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 28-170).

        EARLE, Private, W. E.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 28-171).

        ROSS, Captain HECTOR. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-13).

        MURPHY, Private, JOACHIM.

        "696. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died on board H.M.H.S. Morea, of wounds received in Gallipoli, 7th November 1915. Age 19. Son of Joseph and Ellen Murphy of Mundy Pond Rd., St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-131).

        VOISEY, Private, EDWARD.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-131).

        VISCOUNT, Private, JOHN THOMAS

        1065. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died on board H.M.H.S. Valdiva on 30th October 1915, of wounds received in Gallipoli, 25th October 1915. Age 20. Buried at sea. Grandson of Mrs. Jane Viscount of Dunville, Placentia Bay. From The Rooms Provincial Archives Division database of Newfoundland and Labrador soldiers of the First World War (http://www.rnr.therooms.ca/soldier_files/Viscount_John_Thomas_rnr-1462.pdf) (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-14).

        GRIFFIN, Private, LAWRENCE. (wounded October 11, 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-14).

        WHITE, Private, EDWARD (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-14).

        SLADE, Private, EDWARD (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-14).

        COLLINS, Private, WILLIAM JOSEPH.

        "82. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of dysentery 28th October 1915. Age 27. Son of Jeremiah and Sarah Collins, of Ropewalk, St. John's, NL. . C. 29." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-14).

        BROWN, Private, WILLIAM.

        "2183. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Gueudecourt 12th October 1916. Brother of Mrs. Eliza Keefe, of Little Harbour, Twillingate." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-15).

        MILES, Private, HEBER JOHN.

        "934. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of meningitis 18th March 1916. Age 18. Son of Dugald Miles, of Bonavista, Newfoundland. Nfd. 774." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-15).

        DAWE, Private, GEORGE (ill)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-15).

        WALTERS, Private, GILBERT.

        "620. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Gueudecourt 12th October 1916. Age 30. Son of John and Mary Walters." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-15).

        HARDY, Private, JOHN.

        "760. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regt. Died of Wounds, received at Gallipoli, on board H.M.H.S. [His Majesty's Hospital Ship> Neuralia 14th October 1915. Age 20. Son of James and Elizabeth Hardy, of 49, Brazil Square, St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-15).

        MURPHY, Private, WILLIAM JOHN.

        "975. 1st Bn. From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-16).

        MURPHY, Private, LEONARD. (died of wounds)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-16).

        GALLISHAW, Private, ALONZO. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-16).

        GRIEVE, Private, R.C. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-16).

        ANDREWS, Private, JOHN. (ill)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-16).

        ROBERTS, Lance Corporal, FRANK.

        "2522. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action near Wieltje, Belgium, 14th March 1918. Age 21. Son of Hugh and Lydia Roberts, of Wild Bight Green Bay, Twillingate." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-16).

        WHITE, Private, WILLIAM ARTHUR.

        "1632. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Age 21. Son of Mr and Mrs. John White. of Rattling Brook, Notre Dame Bay."From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-17).

        MCKINL. EY, Sergeant, JOS. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-17).

        TUCKER, Lance Corporal, WALTER.

        "880. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died 25th October 1915. Age 21, on board H.M.H.S. [His Majesty's Hospital Ship] Aquitania, of wounds received in Gallipoli. Son of Stephen J. and Lucy Tucker, of 116, Springdale St., St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-17).

        EZEKIEL, Private, MICHAEL. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-17).

        HARVEY, Second Lieutenant, GERALD. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-18).

        HENNEBURY, Private, ALEXANDER. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-19).

        HACKET, Corporal, DAVID. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-19).

        GARLAND, Private, GEORGE S. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-19).

        PENNEY, WILLIAM EDWARD. (ill—Enteric Fever in Egypt)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-19).

        COOPER, Private, PETER. (wounded November 28)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-20).

        BISHOP, Private, FRED. (wounded November 21)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-20).

        ROPER, Private, FREDERICK CHARLES.

        "1189. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 27th November 1915. Age 19. Son of John and Amnie Roper, of Bonavista, Newfoundland. Special Memorial 23." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-20).

        ST. JOHN, Private, JOHN. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-21).

        BEWEY, Private, EDWARD. (killed in action November 20, 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-21).

        BARNES, Lieutenant, WILLIAM EDWARD.

        "Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of wounds 13th April 1918. Age 29. Son of William and Mary Barnes, of St. John's, NL. husband of Williamina Graham, of Streatham Common, London. XXVIII. H. 4." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-21).

        MYRICK, Private, JOHN.

        "99. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of diphtheria 10th December 1915. Age 19. Son of Patrick and Mary Myrick, of 15, Monkstown Rd., St. Johns, Newfoundland. V. D. 167." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-21).

        CLARKE, Private, GEORGE RANKIN.

        "271. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of dysentery 24th November 1915. Age 19. Son of John and Lydia Clarke, of Brigus, Newfoundland. III. D. 105." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-21).

        TIBBO, Private, JAMES JOSEPH.

        "1017. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 1st December 1915. Age 20. Son of Richard and Mary Ann Tibbo, of 35, Damerills Lane, St. John's, NL. . I. A. 20." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-22).

        FUREY, Private, IGNATIUS.

        "1312. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of tetanus 7th December 1915. Age 19. Son of George and Margaret Furey, of Harbour Main, Conception Bay, Newfoundland. V. D. 158." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-22).

        THOMPKINSON, Private, HARRY. (wounded November 30)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-22).

        LEMESSURIER, Lt. PHILIP. (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-22).

        CALDWELL, Private, CHARLES.(wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-22).

        SULLIVAN, Private, ARTHUR (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-23).

        LYONS, Private, ALLAN.

        "1222. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Age 24. Son of James and Margaret Lyons, of Avondale, Conception Bay." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-23).

        CAREW, Private, MICHAEL (died of wounds October 7)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-23).

        GOWANS, Private, THOMAS (dangerously wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-23).

        BANNISTER, Private, WHITFIELD (wounded)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-23).

        GULLIVER, Private GEORGE (wounded October 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-10).

        WALSH, Private, MICHAEL FRANCIS.

        "399. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Age 25. Son of Patrick and Catherine Walsh, of Placentia." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-10).

        MORGAN, Private, WILLIAM.

        "865. Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Beaumont Hamel 1st July 1916. Age 16. Son of John A. and Sarah Morgan, of Alexander St., St. John's." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-10).

        COLUMBUS, Private, FREDERICK.

        "912. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of wounds 9th October 1915. Age 21. Son of Francis and Susan Columbus, of Shallop, Cove, St. Georges, Newfoundland. F.66." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-10).

        LYONS, Private, JAMES. (wounded October 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-10).

        SELLARS, Captain, FRED. (wounded October 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-11).

        RYDER, Private, JOHN. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-11).

        PAUL, Private, REGINALD.

        "731. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 1st July 1916. Age 21. Son of William John and Maria Veil Paul, of Burin, Newfoundland. A. 8." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-11).

        BASTOW, Private, WILLIAM. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-11).

        SMITH, Second Lieutenant, SAMUEL.

        "Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action at Monchy-le-Preux 14th April 1917. Age 27. Son of John Smith, of Harbour Briton, Fortune." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-11).

        COISH, Private, WILLIAM JAMES. (wounded September 1915)

        "731. 1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 1st July 1916. Age 21. Son of William John and Maria Veil Paul, of Burin, Newfoundland. A. 8." (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-12).

        MERCER, Private, CHESLEY. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-12).

        O'DRISCOLL, Private, JAMES W. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-12).

        BURSEY, Private, FRED. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-12).

        NOSEWORTHY, Private, HERBER. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-12).

        (Left) ROSS, Captain HECTOR (Right) DONNELLY, Captain, JAMES JOHN, M C.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 12th October 1916. Age 34. Son of William and Bridget Donnelly, of St. John's, NL. . XII. B. 6."From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-3).

        (Left) CARTER, C. (Right) SHEPPARD, R.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-3).

        (Left) FOX, Captain JOHN EDWARD. (Right) O'BRIEN, Captain, AUGUSTUS.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of wounds 18th October 1916. Age 36. Adopted son of Mrs. Bridget O'Brien, of 28.5, Lime St., St. John's, NL. . V. A. 7." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-3).

        (Left-Right) ROSS, H. ROBERTSON, J. MARCH, J. W. LUMSDEN, S. CARSEN, C.V.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-4).

        SHORTALL, Lieutenant, RICHARD.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 1st July 1916. Son of Richard and Catherine Shortall, of Cross Rds., St. John's, NL. . C. 44." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-4).

        NUNNS, Captain J.

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-4).

        DONNELLY, Captain, JAMES JOHN, M C.

        "1st Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Killed in action 12th October 1916. Age 34. Son of William and Bridget Donnelly, of St. John's, NL. . XII. B. 6." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published). (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-4-4).

        ENGLAND, Private, FRED. (wounded September 1914)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-9).

        TIBBS, Private, WILLIAM. (wounded September 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-9).

        RIGGS, Signal[t] FRED. (wounded 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-9).

        SHEA, Private, EDWARD. (wounded October 1915)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-9).

        O'BRIEN, Private, JAMES.

        "1160. 2nd Bn. [Battalion] Royal Newfoundland Regiment. Died of sickness 2nd October 1915. Age 22. Son of James and Mary O'Brien, of 27, Adelaide St., St. John's, NL. G.3.I." From Commonwealth War Graves Commission, "Royal Newfoundland Regiment," World War One: The War Dead of the Commonwealth (Berkshire, England: August 1998, re-published).

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. VA 36-9).

        ROBERTS, Pte. WALTER GRAHAM, 1914

        Pte. Walter Graham Roberts, Regiment # 368. He was born in Brigus in 1897, enlisted on Sept 5, 1914 and sailed for England aboard the Florizel on Oct 3rd. On Aug 20, 1915, he embarked for Egypt, and from there on Sept 13 he sailed for Gallipoli. Roberts suffered frostbite there and was admitted to hospital on Dec 1, 1915. Following his partial recovery in England he was attached to the Depot and then to the Pay Records office in London. He received a disability discharge in St. John's on Feb 20, 1919. Walter Roberts died on July 14, 1948.
        (Information and photo courtesy of Philip C. Wilson, grandson of Walter Roberts).

        RENDELL, Captain, WALTER. (wounded 1916)

        (Photo: Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division, St. John's, NL. B-5-139).

        MURPHY, Pte. JOHN, n.d.

        Pte. John Lawrence Murphy, Regiment # 1227. Wounded 16 October.
        Courtesy of The Rooms Provincial Archives Division (VA 36-13.3), St. John's, Newfoundland

        HOWLETT, Pte. JAMES, Regiment #3313. He was from the Goulds, and enlisted on December 9, 1916. Howlett was demobilized on June 30, 1919.

        (Information and photo courtesy of Leonard Howlett, nephew of James Howlett.).

        Left: unidentified soldier Right: HOWLETT, Pte. JAMES, Regiment #3313, with walking stick. He was from the Goulds, and enlisted on December 9, 1916. Howlett was demobilized on June 30, 1919.

        (Information and photo courtesy of Leonard Howlett, nephew of James Howlett.).

        WALSH, Pte. JAMES, Regiment #2341. Walsh was killed on August 21, 1917 when the hospital he was in was bombed in a German air raid.

        (Information and photo courtesy of Leonard Howlett. Leonard Howlett's mother was a 1st cousin of James Walsh.).

        ROWSELL, Pte. GORDON. He was from Glenwood, and the son of John and Emma Rowsell. Killed in action on 14 April, 1917 in the Battle of Arras at Monchy le Preux. Gordon's brother Lance Corporal Hedley Rowsell was taken prisoner by the Germans in the same action and survived the war. Picture taken at Holloway Studio in St. John's in 1915.

        (Information and photo courtesy of Terry Rowsell.).

        Contact | © Copyright 2015 Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Web Site


        Charles Richard Drew

        Dr. Charles Richard Drew broke barriers in a racially divided America to become one of the most important scientists of the 20th century. His pioneering research and systematic developments in the use and preservation of blood plasma during World War II not only saved thousands of lives, but innovated the nation’s blood banking process and standardized procedures for long-term blood preservation and storage techniques adapted by the American Red Cross.

        A native Washingtonian, Drew was an average student but gifted athlete recruited in 1922 on a football and track and field scholarship by Amherst College in Massachusetts. He was one of only 13 African Americans in a student body of 600, where the racial climate exposed him to hostility from opposing teams. His own football team passed him over as captain his senior year even though he was the team’s best athlete.

        Beyond sports, Drew didn’t have a clear direction until a biology professor piqued his interest in medicine. Like many other fields, medicine was largely segregated, greatly limiting education and career options for African Americans. For Drew, the narrowed road would lead him to McGill University College of Medicine in MontrÉal. There, he distinguished himself, winning the annual scholarship prize in neuroanatomy becoming elected to the medical honor society Alpha Omega Alpha and staffing the McGill Medical Journal. He also won the J. Francis Williams Prize in medicine after beating the top 5 students in an exam competition. In 1933, Drew received his MD and CM (Master of Surgery) degrees, graduating second in a class of 137.

        Drew’s interest in transfusion medicine began during his internship and surgical residency at Montreal Hospital (1933-1935) working with bacteriology professor John Beattie on ways to treat shock with fluid replacement. Drew aspired to continue training in transfusion therapy at the Mayo Clinic, but racial prejudices at major American medical centers barred black scholars from their practices. He would instead join the faculty at Howard University College of Medicine, starting as a pathology instructor, and then progressing to surgical instructor and chief surgical resident at Freedmen's Hospital.


        Watch the video: 10 September 2021