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Remembered Today:

Sgt. Thomas William Chisholm

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About this blog

My Diary leading up to my capture 27th May 1918 during the Battle of Aisne and subsequently as a POW at Giessen, Darmstadt, and Lamsdorf camps, until my release 1st January 1919.

Entries in this blog

My Diary in Paperback and Kindle

My Diary in Paperback and Kindle

A few have asked to be kept informed as to the publication of my diary, so here you are. It is available from Amazon as an ebook as well as in paperback format. It can be bought from Waterstones in Newcastle upon Tyne, Morpeth and Hexham, also at Cogito Books in Hexham or direct from broomfieldpublications@gmail.com for £6.99 + p&p. It is available in the Newcastle City Library, The Newcastle University Library, and the Lit & Phil Library in Newcastle. So far it is being read in the US,
 

My Diary in Print

Since the Sergeant returned from WW1 in February 1919 until his passing in 1979, he had always dreamed of having his Diary of his days as a POW published. Well I am pleased to say that 100 years after the events, that has now happened. His Diary is available from Amazon in Kindle ebook form, and will shortly be available in paperback. It has been number 2 in the best sellers for Biographies, in WW1 and has done reasonably well. If you are a "Kindle Unlimited" subscriber, you can read it for free
 

Wednesday 1st January 1919 - A march off, the wonderful HMS Concord and a friendly Marine.

Wednesday 1st January 1919   So finally we were marched off, and at Lamsdorf station boarded the train. A different kind of train it was this time, none of the cattle trucks in which we came here in, but instead real carriages with properly upholstered seats. So with eight men in a carriage we rolled away in the direction of a seaport on the Baltic Sea called Stettin. At the end of our train were two vans with two days supply of food which was issued at intervals alon
 

Tuesday 31st December 1918 - New Order but someone has to stay behind.

Tuesday 31st December 1918   The day begins as usual, and still we wait. In the evening orders are issued that all officers, NCO’s and men will parade outside the orderly room at 2pm tomorrow dressed ready for marching off, greatcoat and one blanket over the arm I might say that all men were ready before the appointed time, and when we did parade and were just about to march off it was found that there was one man to be left in the camp. That one man was our Serbian f

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Sunday 29th + 30th December 1918 - New order, then wait!

Sunday 29th December 1918.   Orders are issued that the camp must be closed by the 1st January 1919. The excitement is great and we all start packing our little wooden boxes in readiness for the journey. Then we wait.   Monday 30th December 1918.   Still we wait.   Sgt. Thomas William Chisholm (POW), The Northumberland Fusiliers 5th Battalion, B Company Aisne, Giessen, Darmstadt, Lager 3A, Barrack

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Tuesday 24th December 1918 - A Christmas card of Sorts.

Tuesday 24th December 1918   As a special treat today we have been given a large amount of sausage, from the Germans but I may say that very little of it was eaten as we have any amount of our own food now. I suppose that this was sent as a peace offering owing to it being Xmas eve. Also included in the gift were two packets of tobacco and a Xmas card. The tobacco proved only to be dried oak leaves, and the card we discovered had been intended for one in England, for on the side us

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Thusrday 19th December 1918 - A birthday

Thursday 19th December 1918     My birthday, I am 22 today and I am very miserable indeed for I had thought to spend it in dear old England, but not so, but I had a talk with the cooks and it ended up in a nice little spread in our hut where we celebrated very well indeed under the circumstances. There are rumours again of another transport on Sunday to include in it all cripples and every two days after that.   Sgt. Thomas William Chisholm (POW), The Northumberla

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Wednesday 18th December 1918 - More men and goodbye Fred.

Wednesday 18th December 1918.   I am on duty today as Orderly Sergeant to the camp and receive order that at 7:15pm tonight there are to be four guides per company at the main gate in readiness to meet a batch of men coming in from another camp. So it came about, that Fred and I parted company on this night, and I was to sort of welcome into the camp 950 new arrivals, who in all probability would also go before I did, so I had to cover up my misery and carry on.  

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Monday 16th December 1918 - Clothing, and list of names.

Monday 16th December 1918     A large consignment of clothing arrived from Lager 1, to equip the men of the first transport. We had a very busy day but I was doomed to disappointment, for when the list of names was read over my name failed to appear, so Fred and I were very gloomy at having to be separated after all our times of strife together, for he was down to go with this first batch. However we had to make the best of things, so I helped him to pack his few goods and ge

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Monday 15th December 1918 - A canteen and poorly fed kids.

Sunday 15th December 1918           Today after a short parade and inspection by our C.O. we were dismissed and just wandered about the camp as we pleased. Our path took us into a German canteen which by appearances was used by all and sundry, as included in its customers were a few children, poorly fed, and poorly clad. They were really in a very poor state altogether, which only went to show once more the ravages of war on the younger generations. It mu

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Thursday 12th December 1918 - Red Cross Parcels, cinema, and best get out of here.

Thursday 12th December 1918 Today has been spent in getting into the camp as much British Red Cross Parcels as possible and it has been arranged that before distribution all goods such as tea, cocoa, bully beef, sugar and any other things that could be used in the cook house, (for we had to have cooks on duty) so that the cooks could make them up into a decent meal. So after these articles had been extracted, we were at liberty to have as much bread, margarine, dripping, cheese, biscuits,

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Wednesday 11th December 1918 Lamsdorf POW a new battalion and new huts.

Wednesday 11th December 1918 Early this morning the Major from the RhD comes on first parade and proceeded to organize our troops into some sort of composite battalion, and is very successful.   He arranged that, to save the removal of any of our belongings, that each two huts should form one Company, irrespective as to what Regiment a man belonged to.   So here we are another step forward to better times, also with a much better supply of good food, things where looking more rosy

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

7th December 1918 Lamsdorf POW camp, an inspection and promises.

Saturday 7th December 1918 Another two Romanians are brought back into camp this morning. The Medical Officer, who had come to the camp, has been busy trying to get better living quarters for us and the first stage takes place today at 10.00am. He arrives at the compound in the company of a number of high officials to inspect the camp in general, and they went through every hut. On coming to the last one, the Chief was overheard to remark “It’s amazing, I don’t know how the poor fe

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

Tuesday 3rd December 1918 Lamsdorf POW Romanians escape but are brought back again.

Tuesday 3rd December 1918 During the night shots were heard at intervals, telling us that it is either more attempted escapes, or prowling wolves.  In going out next morning for soup, we are just in time to see three guards marching two Romanians back into camp. They had escaped during the night, and had made for the village about 2 miles south west of the camp, in an endeavour to steal bread from the local bakery. They’d have succeeded very well, had they not been caught. They eac

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

2nd December 1918 Lamsdorf POW, prisoners arrive from Munster and a great reunion.

Monday 2nd December 1918 A batch of prisoners from another camp called Munster arrived today, amongst them being an Irish corporal of my own platoon. The joy of our meeting again, is almost impossible to imagine. I think we remained out of bed more than half the night talking over all that had happened in our various stages of captivity. He told me that he had been kept behind the lines during the first three months, engaged in carrying wounded back to the dressing station.

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

1st December 1918 Lamsdorf POW, the Russians are plotting.

Sunday 1st December 1918                                                 A Plot Revealed One sergeant arrived back in camp at dinner time from working at the railhead in the company of a squad of Russians. He had relieved a Tommy of his jacket earlier that morning in the hope of exchanging it for a bit of salt fish or ground meal. However he brought news of an intended raid on the British quarters by a mob of Russians.  It appeared that he had heard them talking together and

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

11th - 30th November 1918 at Lamsdorf POW camp, peace, but nothing really changes.

Monday 11th November 1918 Similar to yesterday the weather is cold and dreary, but we hardly notice it as we are so interested in the present situation. The troops who have been our guards so long, are busy packing, rolling up blankets and various other duties connected with moving from one place to another. After breakfast of brown soup with five grains of barley in the bottom (I have counted them), we are all called out on parade, counted and ordered to march. The half dead colum

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

4th - 10th November 1918 Lamsdorf POW, rumour of peace and then what we all wanted to hear.

Sunday 4th November 1918 "Again Fred and I go out to the forest to work, whilst Billy has to go to Lamsdorf railhead to work. When the day is over we pool all our goods, Billy has got about 3lbs of ground maize, Fred 3 turnips, and I a few potatoes so we make up a thick stew with the lot. One of the boys in the foraging party managed to stand on a baby rabbit whist returning to camp but it got away.   I never felt more like doing murder than on this occasion, because the thought o

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

October 1918 Life at Lamsdorf POW Camp

Tuesday 1st October 1918   Today started just as many others have started with the usual breakfast and working parties.   News reaches us that the civil population is to be allowed another rise in their bread ration of 10%.   When the boys return after work it is with rumours of terms of peace by President Wilson, also that the railway workers in Austria had gone on strike owing to some misunderstanding, and that they were refusing to convey German troop

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

27th - 30th September 1918 Lamsdorf POW, YMCA Parcel.

Friday 27th September 1918   All the time as prisoners there had never been any sign of a parcel from England, and we had been told that after about twelve weeks we would be in receipt of parcels of food and clothing from the British Red Cross Society.   However today we all got a pleasant surprise. While the men were at their various tasks, Fred and I were searching round from one compound to another trying to get something to eat, when we spied one of the members o

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

14th August 1918 Lamsdorf POW, fumigation and lost hair.

Wednesday 14th August 1918         Today at 2pm we were roused from our after dinner siesta by our guards, absolutely chased out on parade, and ordered to take with us all blankets and clothing in our possession and were marched across to Lager 1 for a bath, and very happy we were at the thought of a good old splash to relieve us of some of the dirt and lice.   First we entered what appeared to be a boiler house but proved to contain large fumigating appliances. We w

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

 

July 1918 from Darmstadt to Lamsdorf, our new "home" but far from home.

Monday 1st July 1918                                                    Orders came today that we were going to move and while handing in blankets, I was accosted by my old red nosed friend, who with a smile approached and asked how I had enjoyed my stay at Darmstadt. Not to be outdone I replied that it had all been very nice, only I saw that he had noticed my plight, being without boots etc, and drawing me to one side he asked if at any time during my tour of the front I had met

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

Sgt Thomas William Chisholm

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