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Remembered Today:

French artillery assisting British 1.7.16


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You have to love the French (no, really). At the same time as one hears about closures and added costs at Kew I have spent a happy morning locating and printing the war diaries of the French artillery groups and batteries that were sent to assist the British in the pre-1st July bombardment - totally free (the only cost will be the testing of my nearly failed and barely remembered O-Level French). All field batteries identified however I have a query about 2 other batteries.

French artillery mainly came in three types:

de campagne (Field artillery mainly the famous 75 mm)

Lourde (Heavy)

A Pied (Foot)

What is not entirely clear to me is the difference between the latter two categories and where, therefore, the 71st and 72nd Batteries equipped with 220 mm howitzers or mortars (?) fit in. I cannot currently find any thing relevant to these two batteries on the Memoire des Hommes site and wonder whether I am looking for the wrong things.

If anyone knows the answer to either of these questions all answers, as ever, gratefully received.

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And further illuminating the issue. The six batteries of 120 mm long guns mentioned in the Official History footnote as being part of the artillery available for the 1st July were, in fact, as their war diary shows in Third Army's area in and around Arras and did not leave for Fourth Army until 4th July. You lives and learns. So, only the four batteries of 220 mm howitzers and the five batteries of 75 mm actually involved on 1st July.

It's alright. You can all ignore this thread now.

Doh! :rolleyes:

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