Topic categories:

World War I - the 'Great War'

You need to be signed in to respond to this topic

First pagePrevious page

Displaying 61 to 75 of 76 posts

Page 5 of 6

1 2 3 4 5 6
Next pageNo action
76 posts:
Order:    

Annewiggy
Tamworth
All posts by this member
61 of 76  Wed 4th Oct 2017 3:39pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2013  Total posts:1049

Waterstones This is the same as the Amazon one, Primrose but it does say they can get it.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Primrose
USA
All posts by this member
62 of 76  Wed 4th Oct 2017 9:12pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:191

Well, Trevor Harkin found George Taylor, complete with birthdate, death date, cemetery and regimental number. I am so grateful for and impressed by his helpfulness. Thanks again, MR, for the suggestion and thank you, Annewiggy, for the link to buy the book. It turns out there is no picture of George in it so I am back to dithering over getting it. Smile
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
63 of 76  Fri 6th Oct 2017 10:56am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

Primrose, good morning. Long before the Memorial Park, long before the Cenotaph, long before the poppies. A young Coventry soldier returned home, barely twenty-one, not physically wounded but badly traumitized by the war. The next morning, he bought and planted a tree in his father's garden, a remembrance tree. Often he would sit by it and tears would stream down his face. When neighbours heard of the tree women came and asked if they could put vases of flowers at the base of the tree, and flowers were planted by different people. One woman returned with a book of poems for him, but the soldier could hardly read - a local girl that knew him offered to come and read for him, they spent time together fell in love and married. Some months after, another soldier from a few doors away returned. He had lost his left arm just above the elbow, he also came and sat in the garden. The tree grew and the soldier got better, but some people still came and placed flowers at the tree. About 18 years on, the council informed them the road was to be widened, the garden and the tree would have to go. The soldier's father, backed by neighbours, protested strongly. A solution was reached - the garden would go but the tree could remain but in the middle of the pavement. This was around the time of Trinity Street being built. The tree remained there until well after the Second World War. So was this Coventry's first, and probably England's, first tree of remembrance? I have a photo of the father and son, in the corner you can just see the branches of the tree that's in the pavement.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
64 of 76  Fri 6th Oct 2017 11:26am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

When my father came home from the war, he brought back a number of picture postcards - put together in columns, they made a picture about 2ft high of Jesus. The outside of the postcards were different little French villages, put into a frame this was a talking point for all that saw it. My father had often talked of Ypres so in the fifties I visited the battlefields around Ypres, I visited churches, museums, picture galleries, etc. but never found a picture of Christ like the one we had on the postcards.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
65 of 76  Wed 11th Oct 2017 9:55am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

Most people when they talk about the WW1 talk about the 'gassing' but I was told, the Germans (Boche) did use gas but it had a smell about it, so they donned respirators but still had high casualties - it took away the offensive to the defensive. Then in the spring of 1917 at Ypres the Germans shelled the British lines with a new gas (mustard gas) but this had little smell so the Tommies took little notice of it. But the men were blinded by it and choking, thousands had to leave the front line - it was an oily liquid gas that evaporated slowly, and by the time their eyes were smarting it was too late. If they got it on their boots it would go through and burn their feet, if they stayed in the dugout long it gassed everyone else. Rain, mud, lice, the stench of horse carcasses, all added to the Tommies' war.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
66 of 76  Thu 12th Oct 2017 10:28am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

Right from a small child I heard stories about the First World War. It was still fresh in people's minds then, men were still dying from it, and now this forum has re-awakened those stories for me. I remember father talking about Chinese coolies - it wasn't until I was in my thirties that it dawned on me that when small we had been to the Hippodrome and saw a Chinese act. I had never seen a Chinese person before and must have asked questions. But it was when I was older and we had had the blitz that he told me the grim side of the war. It had been quiet for a couple of days around Ypres and the generals thought the Boche had retreated to better and new lines, so a platoon was sent forwards to find out - this was a suicide mission if they were still in the same line of trenches. They went over the top in open formation, a couple of yards between them. They were about a hundred yards from those trenches when two shots rang out and two men fell - the others dived into shell craters. They realised this was a lone sniper, and the shots were from a small clump of broken tree stumps. They threw grenades and followed it with a withering fire of shots and advanced. No more shots. A broken stump of a tree had been hollowed out, inside was a German sniper, a slit had been made in the trunk of the tree for firing. He was only about 14 years of age. They found many child soldiers in the next few days. The Boche had retreated and the Army advanced and took over the old German trenches.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
67 of 76  Fri 13th Oct 2017 4:38pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

Let's not forget that in 1914 Coventry was made up by a number of pretty little villages, that fields and farms ran almost to the centre of the city and everything was done by horses, the milk was delivered by horses, butter was collected from the farms by horses, the delivery of most things into the city was done by horses - people loved horses and treated them as pets. But the Army came round and took two thirds of them away. The boat people lost a great number of their working force. It was all to sad. Most of these horses landed up close to the battle lines, shocked, dazed, sometimes up to their bellies in mud and water, scared by the noise of the guns, hit by shrapnel. Some soldiers were more moved by the plight of the horses than of themselves, a number of soldiers had to be moved to rest centres to recover their composure.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
68 of 76  Sat 14th Oct 2017 1:09pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

Incredible as it may seem: WW1 - two youths joined the Army, became pals, after two weeks training they were sent out to France, then sent to a regt but the regt was sent to the reserve trenches a few yards behind the frontline, and a bombardment started. The soldiers in the front line moved forward. The reserve line moved forward to the front line. And word came when the bombardment stopped they were to go over the top. A shot rang out and one of the boys dropped dead, he had accidentally been shot by his mate, while trying to load his rifle. Lack of training, nerves, whatever. WW2 - 1945/6 time the Army stopped training with some of the old weapons, the 9mm pistol was one. Two soldiers finished their training and was sent to the Middle East to a battalion, then to A Company. A couple of days later and two platoons of A Company were sent out on a special mission, they were each issued a 9mm pistol. The two new soldiers were larking about, never handled a pistol before, when one went off and killed his mate. My father witnessed the first and I witnessed the second.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
69 of 76  Mon 16th Oct 2017 10:33am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

NeilsYard, I think people should check on that before they visit. As far as I know it's a French war grave, about a quarter of a million French soldiers, I don't think there is one Englishman in that cemetery.
World War I - the 'Great War'
NeilsYard
Coventry
All posts by this member
70 of 76  Mon 16th Oct 2017 11:59pm  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:1575

Indeed, mainly French, Kaga, but still equally tragic
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
71 of 76  Tue 17th Oct 2017 3:14pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

1914. The Battle of Verdun. The French urged the British to advance their attack on the Somme to relieve the pressure on their forces. In 1917 the mud and conditions were indescribable. The rain that summer was the worst for over forty years, filled the craters with a sea of muddy slime. Afraid of drowning as much as of shelling. For the third attack on Ypres, called Passchendaele, they built a plank road about 15ft wide, if they slipped off this into a crater without help they were doomed, the sides so slippery they slid back into the muddy slime. In the early 50's I decided to visit, travelling up from the sunny south, on my way home - as I neared the site it began to rain. I sighed, but it helped to create a little depth to the stories I had heard and read.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
72 of 76  Sat 11th Nov 2017 10:52am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

There was something about my father's war that baffled me when I was young, he kept referring to 'Wipers' - later I found out it was the way the 'Tommies' liked to call Ypres. There were three main battles of Ypres, 1914-5-7, the third being called Passchendaele. A lot like Coventry it was a textile city, it also had a large cathedral. Both sides respected the cathedral so spared it for a time but the war went on so long and so savage that in the end it was destroyed - it took them ten years to re-build to its former self. My father told me when I was young the soldiers were wet, cold, hungry and tired, and were pinned down by a well hidden machine gun for two days. A cavalry officer on a beautiful white horse rode forward, his cutlass held high in his hand, trying to rally the troops. The soldiers waited with bated breath for the machine gun to rip him apart, but forward he went, then a single shot rang out and the horse dropped dead. The 'Tommies' were so outraged they charged forward, losing hundreds of men but silenced the gun, found the sniper and shot him. But for all the stories of the WW1 my three aunts told me, they were not really touched by the war - they read about it but it was far away in another country. But when dad came home he was a broken man, not physically, but mentally. To the teenaged girls to nurse him, hear his nightmares, his screams upset the family far worse than normal wounds, they said they felt helpless and suffered for many years. Another young man that lived a few doors from us came home minus most of his left arm, there was no counselling, no help for them - the local people helped him to start a greengrocery business, became his customers to help him regain a little of his life. For us boys there was a weekly comic (Hotspur?) - each week a story of the Red Baron, a German ace pilot. In later years I found out the white horse and the Red Baron were completely true. It was in later years and dad recovered and me full of questions, that he told me the more gruesome tales.
World War I - the 'Great War'
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
All posts by this member
73 of 76  Sat 11th Nov 2017 12:34pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:1864

After WW1 there was a flu epidemic that killed almost as many people as the war. About ten years ago we had the Asian flu, there was talk of exhuming the Unknown Soldier for DNA vaccine - anyone know if that happened?
World War I - the 'Great War'
Helen F
Warrington
All posts by this member
74 of 76  Sat 11th Nov 2017 8:13pm  
Off-topic / chat  

Wearethemods
Aberdeenshire
All posts by this member
75 of 76  Sun 12th Nov 2017 3:29pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2013  Total posts:334

Helen, many thanks for that in depth explanation, most interesting. I am sure that I read somewhere that the post-Great War pandemic killed more people that the war itself, and that the virus originated in the battlefields in France from chickens bred to feed the troops.
World War I - the 'Great War'

You need to be signed in to respond to this topic

First pagePrevious page

Displaying 61 to 75 of 76 posts

Page 5 of 6

1 2 3 4 5 6
Next pageNo action

Previous (older) topic

C G C Badge
|

Next (newer) topic

Cheylesmore Manor
View similar topics in the Wartime and the Blitz category
 
Home | Forum index | Forum stats | Forum help | Log out | About me | My music
Top of the page
HTML5
1,412,216
Counter by Rob Orland

This page last updated 21st April 2017  (Load time: 59ms)