Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Stop it

I found this image on line – recently added to the collection at under UK Army Register of Soldier’s effects.

This is a record of my uncle Harry, killed at Hohenzollern Redoubt in 1915 – a battle for a fucking useless mound – where Harry and his friends were ordered to run uphill into machine gun fire.

This from Wikipedia:

The final British assault on 13 October failed and resulted in 3,643 casualties, mostly in the first few minutes. In the British Official History, J. E. Edmonds wrote that "The fighting [from 13–14 October] had not improved the general situation in any way and had brought nothing but useless slaughter of infantry".

Then, a year later his father gets paid whatever was due. I imagine the accompanying letter read something like:

“Yo! George
Thanks for your lad, here’s ten quid. Got any more?”

At least the record keeping was accurate.

One hundred years ago, and I weep for this senselessness. 


Joanne Noragon said...

My grandfather was wounded at Spottsylvania; his brother killed. After he left the hospital he was sent back, and and was wounded so badly at Gettysburg they had to muster him out. I've looked at these battlefields and was sickened. I can only think, if generals must fight, issue stones to throw, nothing more. I don't know what else to say. Thank you for posting the voucher and Uncle Harry's story.

dinahmow said...

I stay right out of the annual drinks-and-tears fests.
One great uncle was shipped home from the WWI battlefields, severely mentally f'd up.He ended his days in an asylum because then, they did not understand how to treat what they'd caused.

In the next Big One...another uncle came home, married his sweetheart, fathered two daughters, seemed a jolly fellow.I can still recall his nightmares and screams.

And they were the ones who survived...

I feel your family's pain.