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On WW1 artillery

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On WW1 artillery
Post by isaac_newton   » Sat Mar 31, 2018 7:53 am


Posts: 859
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 5:37 am
Location: Brighton, UK

Given how important artillery & trench warefare is in Safehold [esp last two books] I thought that you might be interested in this...

In our local library I came across this book 'Gunner on the Somme; the memoir of William Robert Price'
ISBN 978 0 7509 6982 6

This is facinating from many perspectives
- most WW1 memoirs that I have come across are infantry and most seem to be from officers.

- The author started as a gunner and stayed a gunner in the same battery until he was sent home in late 1917 with a shrapnel wound. Although well off and educated [a botanist] he joined the ranks because he had a really bad stutter - not a good thing for an officer!
He - as far as I can tell - stayed on the same type of gun - an 18 pounder field gun [3.3" cal] for most of this time. This gun had a 5 man crew.

- the book gives a good feel to the life of an artillary man in WW1 - in training, on the march, the firing process and what it was like during times of conflict - both in the big 'pushes' and at other times.

His battery started of at the north end of the Somme battle field near Beaumont Hamel. They were moved around as the front line changed, fighting right thru to the end of that stage of the war.

After the Somme [1916], they were eventually moved up to Flanders for Paschendale [end of July 1917], and as far as I can tell, were based just north of Ypres. Perhaps this is whay he does not seem to mention the explosion of the massive mines on Massines ridge to the south.

Anyway a highly interesting read!

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