WW1

That’s Why He’s Called a “Foot” Soldier (1914)

In the early morning of September 7, we had a very short march into a wood near Artonges.  Here we saw something which was not agreeable to see; many supply wagons returning hastily and in bad condition.  The drivers told us about a retreat of our troops, about heavy casualties, about a defeat, etc.  We were anxious about the battle, which we could only hear, but not see. About 8 o'clock AM, we marched to Villemoyenne and began digging in there, our front to the west.  We could not understand this situation because to date we had been driving the…
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WW1

Assigning the American Combat Zone (1917)

The eventual place the American Army should take on the western front was to a large extent influenced by the vital questions of communications and supplies.  The northern ports of France were crowded by the British Army's shipping and supplies, while the southern ports, though otherwise at our service, had not adequate port facilities for our purposes, and these we should have to build.   The already overtaxed railway system behind the active front in northern France would not be available for us as lines of supply, and those leading from the southern ports to northeastern France would be unequal to…
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WW1

De-gassing the Trenches (1918)

METHOD OF USING CANVAS TRENCH FANS 86. (a) CLEARING fan blade is placed on the ground with the brace side downwards, the man using it being in a slightly crouching position with the left foot advanced, the right hand grasping the handle at the neck and the left hand near the butt end.  The fan is brought up quickly over the right shoulder, and then smartly flicked to the ground.  This drives a current of air along the earth and, on the top strokes, throws the gas out of the trench.  The part of the fan blade nearest the handle…
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WW1

Principles of Ammunition (1910)

THE SHELL. Field Artillery projectiles are either shrapnel or high-explosive shell.  Common shell and case-shot may now be considered obsolete. Shrapnel. ...The walls of the shell are made as thin as possible, in order to get in the greatest possible weight of bullets.  For this reason, the shell is made of hard and tough nickel steel, pressed hot from the ingot and afterwards drawn out hot by passing through successive discs. It will be observed that the body of the shell is contracted at the shoulder.  The object of this "choke-boring" is to get a closer pattern with the bullets,…
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WW1

Training for the Trenches (1917)

…Those who fell victim to loose women and contracted venereal diseases – and it is beyond doubt that most of the women who follow an army are diseased – had to be withdrawn from their positions and sent back to the bases to hospitals.  Every man, therefore, who violated Lord Kitchener’s advice, was playing into the hands of the enemy to this extent that he was taking the risk of contracting a disease which would rob the army of his services.  My own Colonel used not to mince words on this subject but used to say that such men might…
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WW1

Attack by Moonlight (1918)

COMPANY “L,” SIXTEENTH INFANTRY IN THE AISNE-MARNE OFFENSIVE JULY 18-25, 1918 (Personal Experience)   MAJOR FRED M. LOGAN, INFANTRY First Division                Again the silent, determined columns moved forward—but, now, with an animated resolution of purpose which could not be denied—even by all Germanic resources which had held the upper hand against the world for four years. Down into the ravine of Coeuvres midst an intensive artillery counterpreparation methodically and instantly placed by the thorough opponent; past high-walled gardens, whose walls were crumbling under the intensity of the heavy shelling; over the little stream, so full of…
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WW1

“When the Guns are Rolling Yonder” (1917-18)

Every soldier leaves behind Oh! a girl that’s true and kind, But you’ll never see your sweetheart anymore. To the war you’ll go away Just a little while to stay Oh! you’ll never see your sweetheart anymore.     Chorus:   When the guns are rolling yonder, When the guns are rolling yonder, When the guns are rolling y-o-n-d-e-r,     (Spoken) Fall’ In! When the guns are rolling yonder we’ll be there.   You’ll be marching up to battle Where those damned machine guns rattle But you’ll never see your sweetheart anymore. When you’re hanging on the wire Under heavy…
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WW1

Prussians & Doughboys, 1917-1918

Are Americans Well Disciplined? Statement of Dr. Otto Schranzkmuller, A former Prussian Municipal Official. 42nd Div. Summary of Interrogation #185 Dec. 12, 1919. "The American army seems to me as fine a collection of individual physical specimens as I have ever seen," the doctor declared in his excellent unidiomatic English.  "But from the standpoint of military discipline it is a mob, pure and simple.  The men appear slouchy; the officers do not stand out from the men in appearance as they do in any European army.  All seem to allow themselves to be victimized in prices by the tradespeople of…
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Tank Raid for Corned-Beef

OPERATIONS OF THE WESTERN DETACHMENT 1ST BRIGADE, TANK CORPS (US) SEPTEMBER 26 - OCTOBER 11, 1918. (PERSONAL EXPERIENCE) By Captain Thomas C. Brown ...As we left the forest and started east we seemed to be passing through all of the machine guns and anti-tank guns that had been kicked out of Montblainville.  They peppered us from all sides with their small stuff, adding a big "wham" every so often from their wicked 16mm anti-tank gun.  This gun was very effective and would penetrate tank armor very easily with a normal impact.  The fact that the gun was about as dangerous…
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WW1

1928

Source:  A Comparative Study of World War Casualties from Gas and Other Weapons, Col. H. L. Gilchrist, Medical Corps, Army, USGPO
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