Saturday, November 22, 2014

November 1914 - With the Irish Guards

Army Base Post Office - November 1914
"Do not take any notice of me being wounded because if I was I would have let you know and I cannot think what the War Office is doing frightening people."

Kipling: "The Battalion had been practically wiped out and reconstructed in a month. They had been cramped in wet mud till they had almost forgotten the use of their legs: their rifles, clothing, equipment, everything except their morale and the undefeated humour with which they had borne their burden, needed renewal or repair."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

11 November 1914 - With the Irish Guards

Postmark: Army Post Office, 11 November 1914
"...hope dear you and Lucy are quite well, you ever loving husband."

"On the morning of the 11th November, they were moved out by way of the Bellewaarde Lake and under cover of the woods there, in support of the Oxfordshire L.I. who cleared the wood north of Ch√Ęteau Hooge and captured some thirty prisoners of the Prussian Guards... At 9 P.M. the Battalion was told it might go back and get tea and supplies at some cross-roads or other in the darkness behind it. The cookers never came up and the supplies were not available till past midnight on the 12th."  (The Irish Guards in the Great War, Kipling).

Monday, November 10, 2014

10 November 1914 - With the Irish Guards

Postmark: Army Post Office, 10 November 1914
"Dearest wife, just a postcard to let you know I received about 5 letters from you at once.  
They must have been saving them up for me..."

"Since October 31, 6 officers had been killed, 7 wounded, and 3 were missing. Of NCO’s and men 64 were dead, 339 wounded, and 194 missing. The total casualties, all ranks, for one week, were 613.

On the night of the 9th November the Battalion of four platoons, three in the firing line and one in reserve, was relieved by the S.W. Borderers; drew supplies and men at Brigade Headquarters, moved back through Zillebeke and marched into bivouacs near a farm south of the Ypres–Zonnebeke road, where they settled down with some Oxford L.I. in deep trenches, and dugouts which had been dug by the French.  They spent the 10th in luxury; their cookers were up and the men ate their first hot meal for many days."   (The Irish Guards in the Great War, Kipling).