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Remembered Today:

Mount Sorrel


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I thought it would be appropriate to remember the anniversary of this battle with an excerpt from the War Diary of the 5th Canadian Mounted Rifles, part of the 8th Canadian Infantry Brigade (C.M.R.) which was sorely tested here. The original War Diary can be seen here, link to Diary.

(Unproofed version)



Morning broke bright and clear, with slight NW wind.

A red letter day in the history of the Battalion, ever to be remembered by those who lived through it. In the early morning, enemy sprang a mine in part of line held by 4th CMR Battalion and began a bombardment of the Brigade area, details of which are shown in the following narrative:-

The Battalion went into the line on the night of 31st May/1st June occupying a position in Brigade Support at MAPLECOPSE (I 23.g.9.2)

Disposition “C” Coy. S P’s

“A” Coy. and 2 Platoons of “B” Coy MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2)

“D” Coy. Dugouts at ZILLEBEKE BUND

“B” Coy. 2 Platoons and Lewis Gun


Orders To maintain Support Line and in event of attack to “Stand to” and await orders from Brigade.

Nothing of importance occurred until the morning of 2nd June when at about 8.30 am enemy began a very heavy bombardment of the front line and all the ground in MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2) and vicinity. The men were kept under cover as much as possible and at 9.15 am the following message was brought in by two runners of the 4th CMR Battalion which was occupying the front line trenches 47 to 53 inclusive:-

“Our wires are cut, please have Corps Artillery turned on. General Mercer is here and wants it. General Williams has been hit.” (sgd) J.H. Symonds Capt. & Adjt. 4th CMR.”

Artillery and Brigade were notified of this message. Several attempts were subsequently made to get in touch with the front line without success. Runners sent out by us with this end in view were either killed or returned wounded, with news that the communication trenches had been blown in, and that it was impossible to get through enemy’s barrage fire. On account of the terrific bombardment of MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2) and the consequent destruction of the dug outs therein, the C.O. deemed it advisable to place the men in the communication trenches on the south and east sides of the Copse, which disposition maintained the frontage from S.P. 16 to the Cemetery, and S.E. corner of MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2) together with trench in South side. At about 1.30 pm as all telephone communication was broken, the Battalion Headquarters moved into communication trench on South side of the Copse and at 1.50 pm the following message was sent to Brigade:-

“Enemy attacking, we are holding East side and communication trench on South side MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2).”

The position remained as above and at 4.06 pm the following message was sent to Brigade:-

“Our present position:- line S.P. 16 East and South Side, MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2), S.P. 14. S.P. 16 still holding out. Am endeavouring to obtain touch with S.P.s 13 and 14, and 4th CMR. Have no report from anyone this morning. Present strength (380 rifles) 2 ½ Companies, besides those in Strong Point. No Lewis Guns.”

At 4.10 pm following message was sent to Lieut. J.D. Fraser o/c Lewis Gun Detachment:-

“Unless you have other orders, bring up your Lewis Guns. We are in Communication trench South Side of MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2).”

Subsequent enquiry showed that our Lewis Gun Officer had received orders from an Officer of the Brigade to proceed to ZILLEBEKE SWITCH (I.22.g.2), and he took up a position there acting on the orders of his Senior Officer.

At about 6.00 pm the C.O. sent out a patrol to discover the position of the enemy in the vicinity of S.P. 14. This patrol found the bodies of several dead Germans near S.P. 14 but reported our men were still in possession. About 6.40 pm Captain Pitto O.C. “A” Company was given the following order, in carrying out which he was mortally wounded:-

“Reinforce S.P. 14 with two platoons and get in touch with 10th Canadian Infantry Battalion on our right.”

About 6.00 pm Captain Roscoe, O.C. “D” Coy. which had been at ZILLEBEKE BUND (I.21.a.g) brought his Company up through the open with splendid leadership into MAPLECOPSE and was ordered to firmly establish a line on the East end of the Copse, from the communication trench on the South side to S.P. 16 on the NorthEast. This order was carried out with signal ability and the line maintained. A detachment of the 42nd Battalion came up about this time and occupied a position in support of the P.P.C.L.I.’s to the NorthEast of the Copse. At about 7.00 pm Major Draper 2nd i/c of the Battalion was ordered to take a force of 20 men to reinforce S.P. 16. This order was immediately carried out and C.S.M. Gill left in charge of the Strong Point, which he gallantly held until his force was practically wiped out.

The position of affairs did not change markedly until about 8.15 pm when enemy began to appear in the vicinity of OBSERVATION RIDGE, coming apparently from the direction of RUDKIN HOUSE (I.24.E.1.1) and about 8.30 pm the enemy’s bombardment increased in intensity, particularly along DURHAM AVENUE and South Side of MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2). The enemy used Trench Mortars, Bombs, and guns of all calibres, enfilading the trench from the East with Shrapnel.

This intense bombardment continued until 9.40 pm, our casualties being very heavy, the Commanding Officer, Lt. Colonel G.H. Baker being hit and dying shortly after. During the period of this intense bombardment the enemy essayed several attacks on the East and SouthEast sides of MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2), all of which were repelled by the prompt rapid fire of our men, who were at a great disadvantage owing to the profuse use made by the enemy of smoke bombs which very effectively screened them from view when attacking. The general bombardment by the enemy continued, reinforced with intense machine gun fire, during the night till about 11 pm when the 2nd CMR Battalion under Major Allen came up and endeavoured to dig themselves in between MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2) and a brick barn on the OBSERVATION RIDGE ROAD. This they were unable to do and subsequently withdrew to the communication trench on the South side of MAPLECOPSE (I.23.g.9.2) .

At 2.30 am 3rd June the 14th Battalion came up on our right front and dug themselves in on the line which the 2nd CMRs had attempted to establish – they were subjected to a very severe fire and were able to establish a line. A lively bombardment continued all night and at about 7 am the 14th Battalion advanced across the open in a very gallant manner, but their attack being in broad daylight was apparently unavailing, for we saw nothing more of them than a constant stream of wounded returning. During the morning of the 3rd June a desultory bombardment was kept up by the enemy till about noon diminishing in the afternoon. At about 6.00 pm the bombardment again became severe, due apparently to the fact that the 9th Brigade was being brought up. During this time there were only two of our Officers left in the line, the balance being killed or wounded.

At 8.30 pm (3rd) another demonstration accompanied by numerous flares, trench mortars and bombs, took place which lasted one hour and from then until about midnight the enemy searched the approaches and communication trenches with shrapnel. The 9th Brigade could be seen coming in and they established themselves in our positions and in a new line just in advance. At 1.30 pm the remainder of our Battalion under Captain Hewson and Lieutenant Barnes having evacuated their wounded and all possible rifles and equipment came out of the line, on being relieved by Units of the 9th Brigade.


Fighting continues and the enemy has taken a heavy toll from the 5th both in Officers and men. The enemy is being well held and counter attacks are beginning to push him back. This evening the remnants of the 8th Canadian Infantry Brigade are to be relieved by the 9th Canadian Infantry Brigade and go back to rest camp.


Weather squally. Remains of the Battalion are back at rest camp. “B” muster parade held in morning showing “A” Coy 80 other ranks, “B” Coy 80 other ranks, “C” Coy 50 other ranks, “D” Coy 42 other ranks, Staff 63, and Lewis Gun Section 26. Of these 54 were not in the line during the engagement, giving a total of 325 rank and file returning out of nearly 650. Only twelve Officers remain, four of these being, four of these being non combatants, and two returned from leave, leaving six Officers out of 18 who went into the line. Our casualties altogether in other ranks are:- Killed 59, wounded 272, and missing 5. Officers 4 Killed, 7 wounded and 1 missing.

Particularly regretted is the death of our O.C. Lt. Colonel G.H. Baker who has been O.C. since the Regiment was recruited in January 1915. He had endeared himself to Officers and men alike by his tact and cheerfulness under all conditions. Our comfort is that he died as he wished, at the head of his men, and his cross in the new MILITARY CEMETERY at POPERINGHE (LOT 2, G1) is inscribed “Killed in action”, the epitaph of a man. He was buried with full military honours today, the Chaplain of the 3rd Canadian Division Hon. Major A.W. Woods officiating. The following acted as pall bearers, Major Draper, D.C., Captain Rhoades, W., Captain French, J. (1st CMR), Captain Patterson, J. (4th CMR), Captain Robinson, E., Captain Tribch, A., Captain Hewson, C., and Lieutenant Todd, J.S. Representatives of each platoon in the Battalion followed.



The Battalion moved back to the outskirts of STEENVOORDE (T.31.d.2) occupying billets in farmhouses.

Our Officers Killed were Lt. Colonel G.H. Baker, Captain H.J. Pitts, Lieutenant G.D. Otty and Lieutenant T.L. Harling. Wounded Major D.C. Draper, Captain W. Rhoades, Captain B.W. Roscoe, Lieut. W. H. Harton, Lieut. H. G. Rogers, Lieut., A.L. Rice (?), Lieut. J. Adam and Missing Lieut J. Decker (?).

For distinguished conduct and good services rendered Major D.C. Draper, now Officer Commanding the Battalion has made the following recommendations for Honour and Awards:-

Officers – Captain Barry Wentworth Roscoe D.S.O.

Lieutenant George Roland Barnes D.S.O.

Captain William Rhoades Military Cross

Captain Charles Waldby Rowson (?) Military Cross

Other ranks - 110053 Pte Brayley, J.E. D.C.M.

111195 C.S.M. Gill, G. D.C.M.

110254 C.S.M. Hughes, I. D.C.M.

111320 Sergt. Martin, I.W. D.C.M.

110448 Sergt Rogers, L.B. D.C.M.

110563 Cpl. Walton, H.B. D.C.M.

110022 Sgt. Baker, P.A.C. Military Medal

110031 Agt. Beard, G. Military Medal

22987 L./Cpl. Dickinson, J. Military Medal

110404 Pte. McDonald, T.V. Military Medal

111380 Pte. McMurrer, L.J. Military Medal

112268 Pte. Moss, R.D. Military Medal

111433 Pte. Redden, S.B. Military Medal

110487 Sgt. Roe, J.E. Military Medal

110506 Cpl. Sempes, S. Military Medal

114906 Pte. Youngman, R.H.L. Military Medal

For conspicuous and consistent work during the period previous to the 1st June 1916 the following recommendations were also made:-

111085 Sgt. Chase, G. Military Medal

110309 Sgt. Leach, J. Military Medal

110487 Sgt. Roe, J.E. Military Medal

414337 Pte Smith, R.A Military Medal

The following recommendations for direct commissions, from the ranks, to fill vacancies caused by casualties, were made:-

110210 C.S.M. Gray, J.R.

110367 O.R.S. Mathews, R.E.

110189 Sergt. Gifford, H.R.

111156 Sergt. Eaton, L.C.


Weather wet and squally. Battalion resting and cleaning up.

Thirteen other ranks arrived as reinforcements, also two Officers.


At this point, the Battalion awaited further reinforcements.

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Mount Sorrel and Sanctuary Wood (June 1916)

The Canadian Third Division moved in to the front line to occupy a hill in the Ypres salient known as Mount Sorrel, almost the only high ground retained by the Allies from the previous year. Because of its strategic importance it was a key target for the Germans. On the morning of June 2, 1916 a furious bombardment was unleashed against the Canadian positions, and simultaneously four huge mines were exploded under Mount Sorrel. Trenches and their defenders vanished, and those who survived offered virtually no resistance to the German infantry as they attacked. Of 702 men in the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles, only 76 survived unwounded; the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry lost 400 men in Sanctuary Wood. The next morning the Canadians counter-attacked to try to recapture Mount Sorrel and Hills 61 and 62. With little artillery support and in the face of heavy machine gun fire, the Canadians were beaten back. On June 6 the Germans exploded four more mines under the Canadian positions at Hooge. A second counter-attack was launched. A different artillery plan, designed to catch the German defenders off guard, was developed. Four times the bombardment built to a crescendo and stopped. Four times the Germans manned their defences, only to sustain heavy casualties as the guns opened up again. Finally, at 1:30 a.m. on June 13, after an intense bombardment the previous evening, the Canadians attacked and regained all the positions lost on June 4. The cost was heavy, with some 8,430 casualties. Canadians had won a victory, but ahead of them was the Battle of the Somme.

Source: http://www.vac-acc.gc.ca/remembers/sub.cfm.../chapter3_page1

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Vol. VIII. The Canadians at Mount Sorrel, June 1916

The Battle of Mount Sorrel was typical of many "small", local actions in the Great War. In less than 2 weeks in June, 1916, 9,000 men were dead, more than 3,000 Canadians were dead. Amongst the dead and prisoners were two Canadian Generals and five Colonels.

ISBN 1-896979-14-9

Published by CEF BOOKS

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The Battle of Mount Sorrel, 2-13 June 1916

The beginning of June found the 2nd Canadian Division still in front of St. Eloi. Major-General Currie's 1st Division had battalions in its front line, which centred on Hill 60, immediate]y north of the Ypres-Comines railway. The remaining two miles of front on the Corps left were held by the 3rd Division (Major-General Mercer), with four battalions forward. This part of the Canadian line formed the most easterly projection of the Ypres Salient into enemy territory. The challenge to German aspirations presented by this obtrusion was the greater in that the 3rd Division's sector included the only portion of the crest of the Ypres ridge which had remained in Allied hands - a tenure which gave the Canadians observation over the enemy trenches. This advantageous position extended from a point about a thousand yards east of Zwarteleen (beside Hill 60) passing in succession over a flat knoll called Mount Sorrel and two slightly higher twin eminences, "Hill 61" and "Hill 62", the latter known also as Tor Top. North of these points the ground fell away to the Menin Road, but from Tor Top a broad spur, largely farm land, aptly named Observatory Ridge, thrust nearly a thousand yards due west between Armagh Wood and Sanctuary Wood. If the enemy could capture Tor Top and advance along Observatory Ridge he would gain a commanding position in the rear of the Canadian lines, and might well compel a withdrawal out of the salient. At the least such an advance might, as the Germans themselves stated, "fetter as strong a force as possible to the Ypres Salient", and thus reduce the number available for a British offensive elsewhere.

Opposite the 1st and 3rd Divisions the enemy's 27th and 26th Infantry Divisions, of the 13th Württemberg Corps, had for the past six weeks been stealthily preparing just such a blow. Warnings were not lacking. During May Canadian patrols reported that German engineers were pushing saps forward on either side of Tor Top. These progressed slowly but steadily in spite of our artillery and machine-guns; and before the end of the month a new lateral trench connected the heads of the saps, now fifty yards in advance of the main front line. The same kind of thing was going on south of Mount Sorrel and at other points beyond. Some weeks earlier observers of the Royal Flying Corps had seen near the Menin Road, well behind the enemy lines, works curiously resembling the Canadian positions near Tor Top. (The history of the German 26th Infantry Division confirms that these were practice trenches used to rehearse the assault.) Other indications of forthcoming action appeared in the bringing up of large-calibre trench mortars, and abnormal activity by the enemy's artillery, aircraft and observation balloons. Weather conditions, however, prevented systematic observation of the German rear areas; and the absence of significant troop movements seemed to signify that the looked-for attack was not imminent. (Actually the only additional enemy troops transferred to the sector for this operation were artillery.) Then on the night of 1-2 June the Württembergers refrained for seven hours from shelling the Canadian trenches, in order, as it subsequently transpired, to avoid interference with their own wire-gapping parties. Later their guns resumed normal activity, and Canadian suspicions were allayed.

At six o'clock on the morning of the 2nd, General Mercer and Brig.-Gen. Williams, commander of the 8th Brigade (which was defending the threatened area about Observatory Ridge), set out to reconnoitre Tor Top and Mount Sorrel. They had just reached the front-line trenches of the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles on the brigade right when the enemy's preliminary bombardment burst upon them. It was the Canadian Corps' first experience of the terrific violence that artillery preparation was to attain in the summer of 1916. "All agreed", writes Lord Beaverbrook, "that there was no comparison between the gun-fire of April and of June, which was the heaviest endured by British troops up to that time." For four hours a veritable tornado of fire ravaged the Canadian positions from half a mile west of Mount Sorrel to the northern edge of Sanctuary Wood. The full fury fell upon the 8th Brigade and the right of the 7th Brigade. Hardest hit was Brig.-Gen. Williams' right-hand battalion, the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles, in front of Armagh Wood. Their trenches vanished and the garrisons in them were annihilated. Of this unit's ordeal a German eye-witness was to write: "The whole enemy position was a cloud of dust and dirt, into which timber, tree trunks, weapons and equipment were continuously hurled up, and occasionally human bodies". "The Tunnel", a gallery dug on the reverse slope of Mount Sorrel by the 2nd Canadian Tunnelling Company (whose sappers were to do stout work in evacuating casualties), afforded some safety until it was blown in; its surviving occupants were captured. In all, the 4th Mounted Rifles suffered 89 percent casualties - of 702 officers and men only 76 came through unscathed."

Neither Mercer nor Williams returned from the Mounted Rifles' area. The latter, wounded, was taken prisoner when the German infantry assaulted. The death of Mercer - his ear-drums were shattered by shellfire, his leg broken by a bullet, and finally he was killed by a burst of shrapnel as he lay on the ground- came tragically at a moment when his new command was entering its first big action.65 That afternoon Brig.-Gen. E.S. Hoare Nairne, of the Lahore Divisional Artillery, assumed temporary command of the 3rd Division. Williams' place was taken for the time being by Lt.-Col. J.C.L. Bott, Commanding Officer of the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles (then in brigade reserve). For several critical hours, however, both the 3rd Division and the 8th Brigade were leaderless; and the conduct of the defence suffered accordingly.

Source: Official History of the Canadian Army in the First World War - Canadian Expeditionary Force, 1914-1919, Colonel G. W. L. Nicholson, pp 131-132

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Tonight we will commemorate at the Last Post Ceremony private Teizo Nishioka, 5th Canadian Mounted Rifles killed on 2nd June 1916. His name is forever chiselled on the walls of the Menin Gate.


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Thank-you Jacky for mentioning this. I will think about him tonight as well.

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This part of a map (28 N.W. 4 & N.E. 3, Edition 3.B ) is attached as an appendix of the June 1916 8th Canadian Infantry Brigade War Diary, link.

Strong Points 13, 14, 16 and 17 are visible.


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Here is the right side of the same map, link to jpeg.


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The following is an extract from R. C. Fetherstonhaugh's book, "The Royal Montreal Regiment, 14th Battalion, C.E.F. 1914-1925." which is reproduced here courtesy of the The Archive CD Books Project, link.


When the German attack smashed through the lines of the 3rd Canadian Division early on the afternoon of June 2nd, 1916, the 14th Battalion, Royal Montreal Regiment, lay in rest at Dominion Lines, near Poperinghe, under Major Gault McCombe, who was commanding during the temporary absence of Lieut.-Col. R. P. Clark. Early in the day news of the intense bombardment was received, and several officers walked to high ground whence, far away in the Salient, a great cloud of dust and smoke indicated the scene of action. Soon after this party returned, the Battalion was ordered to "stand to". Later orders to move forward were received and at 7.30 p.m. the march began.

Under command of Lieut. C. G. Power, Battalion Scouts and Intelligence men guided the companies and details to a rendezvous not far from Cafe Beige Corner. Speed was essential and the men marched steadily throughout the night, omitting the customary halts, but losing time none the less owing to congestion of traffic on the roads. Not far from the appointed rendezvous the Battalion was met by Staff Captain H. M. Urquhart, of the 3rd Brigade, and ordered to take up a position in battle formation with its left flank resting on Zillebeke Lake and the right flank on a point near Zillebeke Halte. Major McCombe was instructed to report to Brigade Headquarters in Railway Dugouts for further orders.

In obedience to instructions, the companies and details of the 14th Battalion moved independently across country to the locations assigned them. Different routes were chosen to avoid congestion and shell fire, No. 1 Coy., under Capt. R. W. Frost, reaching its destination about 1 o'clock on the morning of June 3rd and Nos. 2, 3, and 4 Companies, commanded respectively by Lieut. Dick Worrall, Capt. C. B. Price, D.C.M., and Lieut. W. E. Beaton, arriving in position not long after. Meanwhile the Machine Gun Section, commanded by Lieut. J. K. Nesbitt, had come forward from Cafe Beige independently. At Zillebeke Halte, Lieut. Nesbitt left two of his gun crews, under Corp. Fletcher, proceeding with Sergeant Lennan and the remaining four guns past Blauwe Poort Farm, where the dead of two batteries were strewn about, and on to a point where Major McCombe had established temporary Headquarters. From this point Lieut. Nesbitt led his men through Zillebeke Village and on up Observatory Ridge Road, skirting to the right when near Valley Cottages to take advantage of an area which afforded protection from enemy shell fire. Returning to the Road, Nesbitt's section encountered a party of the enemy who retired and touched off an S.O.S. rocket, which brought a withering blast of gun fire. Sergt. Lennan, Corp. Sullivan, and four men were wounded by this fire and all the party badly shaken. Shortly afterwards the 15th and 14th Battalions moved into position on Nesbitt's right, and formed the first line to defend the gap opened by the enemy's success at Mount Sorrel.

Meanwhile, plans for an extensive counter-attack along the whole Canadian front were maturing. On the right the 7th Battalion, with the 10th in close support, was ordered to retake the ground from Mount Sorrel to Observatory Ridge. In the centre the 15th and 14th Battalions, supported respectively by the 16th and 13th, were instructed to drive a counter-attack against Hill 62. On the left, and not in immediate touch with these attacks, the 49th and 60th Battalions, with the 52nd in close support, were ordered to restore the front from Hill 62 to a point where the Royal Canadian Regiment still held original front line trenches near Hooge.

When these counter-attacks were planned, 2 o'clock on the morning of June 3rd was named as "zero", but this allowed too short a time for the fresh battalions to come from reserve and deploy for action. Had it been possible to clear all roads and had the terrain for deployment been dry, the feat might have been accomplished. As it was, roads were congested with traffic, communication trenches in places were barely passable, and some units had to seek their jumping off locations across marshy ground waist deep. Accordingly, "zero" was postponed once and again and confusion resulted, the 7th Battalion attacking at 7.37 a.m., the 14th at 8.17 a.m., the 15th at 8.35 a.m., and the 49th and 60th on the left at 7 a.m. By arrangement, the Staff of the 3rd Canadian Division was to fire six green rockets as a signal for the attack to begin. This sign would have been effective at 2 a.m.; at 7.10 a.m., when it was fired, day had broken and the green lights were almost invisible. Even when seen, the signal was recognized with difficulty, as rain had spoiled some rockets, and fourteen were ignited before six could be made to rise into the air. Six rockets at regular intervals constitute a signal; six rising irregularly leave just that element of doubt which in an attack is often the genesis of failure.

When Major McCombe returned from Brigade Headquarters in Railway Dugouts, he brought instructions for the Battalion to advance to a position in front of Zillebeke Village, the right flank of the Battalion to rest upon Observatory Ridge Road and the left flank on Maple Copse. In obedience to these orders the companies of the 14th moved independently forward through Zillebeke Village, with the Battalion Bombers, under Lieut. F. Owen, marching on the left.

Almost at once the advance of the Battalion encountered shell fire. Men began to drop in Zillebeke Village and casualties mounted as this point was passed. In front of the village Capt. R. W. Frost was blown into the air by shell fire, command of No. 1 Coy. passing temporarily to Lieut. W. R. B. Lugar, who showed judgment in reconnoitring his front and spreading his troops to fill a gap which had opened on his flank. Later Capt. Frost, who had resumed command of the company, was again hurled to the ground and partially buried by the burst of a shell, but for the second time he regained his feet and insisted that he was fit to "carry on". At about 6 a.m. the Battalion reached the position whence it was to "jump off" for the final assault on Hill 62. Shell fire continued while the men dug in, Capt. C. B. Price, D.C.M., suffering his second severe wound of the war and Lieut. W. R. B. Lugar losing a leg through the same shell. Lieut. V. G. Rexford, who had served in the ranks and been granted a commission after recovering from injuries received in the Second Battle of Ypres, was also wounded at this time, as were a number of other ranks.

At 8.17 a.m. orders were received to advance and at once, under immediate command of Major A. T. Powell, the whole Battalion swept forward. Speaking of the advance, an officer of the 3rd Brigade Staff says, "It was one of the finest things I have ever seen. One hears occasionally of troops advancing 'as if on parade'. There was no question of this being a parade. Under the leadership of Major Powell, the old 14th advanced coolly, steadily, and splendidly. The lines were torn and bent by shell, rifle, and machine gun fire, but there was no faltering. When the front line was staggered and withered by fire, there always seemed someone to step into the gaps".

Truly the gaps were filled; but sooner or later under fire such as the Germans concentrated on the advancing lines an attack must vanish into thin air, or dig in. Reluctantly, having lost two-thirds of his strength, Major Powell realized that such a moment had come. His men had marched all night, had deployed over unfavourable ground, had advanced under shell fire severe enough to shake the strongest morale, had dug in unshaken, and had then advanced for three hundred yards in broad daylight, under fire which had torn their lines to ribbons. Those who remained were undaunted; but the Battalion's strength had gone. Accordingly, orders were issued for the line to dig in. When this was accomplished the Regiment, under severe fire of all descriptions, held the front until relieved on the following morning, the firing line being manned by approximately 80 men, who, with the details and small parties operating on the flanks, represented what was left of the Battalion. No one can claim that the attack was an entire success, as it failed to attain its topographical objectives. Inasmuch, however, as it closed a dangerous gap in the secondary system of the Ypres defences and provided jumping-off positions for the great counter-attack of June 13th, it cannot be regarded as a failure. Elsewhere on the front the result was the same, the assigned objectives proving beyond the power of flesh and blood to attain, but discipline and marked courage carrying the attacking battalions well forward.

For some time during the progress of the attack and while the men were digging in, Major McCombe, who at first established Headquarters in a cellar at Valley Cottages, was unable to keep in touch with his forward companies, but later, when this condition had been corrected, his grasp of the situation proved his ability to command under exceedingly difficult circumstances. A tribute to his work exists in a letter from an officer of the Battalion to a brother officer in hospital. The tribute is short, but complete: "Gault McCombe handled the situation splendidly".

After the line advanced Capt. Utton and Capt. E. A. Whitehead carried out a reconnaissance and, following their report, Headquarters was moved to a dugout under the crest of Observatory Ridge. Between this dugout and the front line the Signallers, under Sergt. A. Close, established and maintained communication, their work being of the finest character. It is a principle of military operations that routine must continue under the most difficult circumstances, this probably accounting for the fact that on June 3rd a runner, who had made his way through the enemy barrage, arrived grimy and exhausted at 14th Battalion Headquarters with a message from London asking how many members of the Battalion had subscribed for War Loan.


The story of the advance and check of the 14th Battalion, Royal Montreal Regiment, has been outlined in the preceding pages, but no account of the unit's work on June 3rd would be complete without mention of the gallantry and splendid behaviour of certain details and isolated parties. On the extreme left of the attack Lieut. W. E. Beaton, commanding No. 4 Company, advanced with 35 men, encountering the enemy far in advance of the front line at a point near Hedge Street. At about 9 a.m. Lieut. Beaton, finding himself cut off from the main body of the Battalion and coming under enfilade fire from a machine gun, halted the eager advance of his little company, faced his men left to meet a threatened flank attack, posted sentries to guard against surprise, and sent out patrols to maintain touch with the enemy. All day, though wounded in the shoulder by a splinter of shell, he remained at duty, encouraging his men and setting a splendid example of level-headedness and courage. At night the enemy concentrated gun and trench mortar fire on the position, rendering it quite untenable, whereupon Lieut. Beaton, taking advantage of the darkness, disengaged his contact patrols and successfully led the living remnant of his party back to safety in the Battalion lines. During the whole of this little feat of arms, Beaton received much assistance from Sergt. H. Hunt, of No. 2 Coy., who, when all officers of the company had fallen, had led the remaining men forward. Sergt. Hunt, throughout the day, showed great courage in leaving shelter to recover disabled men, or dress their wounds. Unfortunately, before nightfall, he was killed by an enemy trench mortar.

Equally gallant, but less fortunate than Lieut. Beaton, was Lieut. A. F. Major, who with a small party penetrated even further into the German lines. The full story of this little party can never be told, though it is established that its members fell fighting at some point far back of the German front. At another point on the left flank Sergeant B. Topham, of No. 3 Coy., led a party of 14 men and established contact with the enemy at a point near Durham Lane. When his advance was checked, Topham took up a position and for the whole day defied the enemy's efforts to eject him. Casualties he could not avoid; and gradually his little party dwindled. At night, together with some two or three survivors, he retired on the main body of the Battalion.

When the advance from in front of Zillebeke Village began, the Battalion Bombers, under Lieut. F. Owen, moved forward on the left flank. Proceeding up Durham Lane until they encountered a block, the Bombers moved out into the open, crawled from shell hole to shell hole, kept pace with the Battalion, and dug in on the same line. During the advance the detail lost Lieut. Owen, who was wounded by shell fire.

Covering the advance from positions previously taken up, teams of the Machine Gun Section, under Lieut. J. K. Nesbitt, accomplished excellent work. When their covering fire was no longer of value, they advanced with the Battalion, suffering heavy losses. One team, though reduced from 6 men to 2, kept its gun in action until relieved that night. At another spot Private Imray retrieved a gun which had been blown up, carried it forward, found ammunition to feed it, set it up unaided, and kept it in action throughout the day. At the height of the engagement Sergt. Bagnall returned from leave and brought forward the two guns which had been left at Zillebeke Halte the night before. He established a position in Maple Copse and reported to Lieut. Nesbitt for further orders. While conferring with his officer Bagnall was seriously wounded by the burst of a shell, Lieut. Nesbitt escaping severe injury but being knocked over and dazed by concussion. Recovering, Nesbitt reported to Battalion Headquarters and guided stretcher bearers to Bagnall's assistance. It is worthy of note that these bearers, though in view of the enemy for some time, were quite unmolested.

Amongst the companies and Battalion details every officer who took part in the attack was killed, wounded, or blown up by shell fire. Capt. E. A. Whitehead, who had been wounded at the Second Battle of Ypres and, after rejoining, had for months served as Adjutant, acted as Signalling Officer during the early morning hours and then asked to be sent to the main body of the Battalion. Major McCombe was reluctant; but realizing how valuable Whitehead's presence might prove, he finally gave assent. A few minutes later news reached him that Whitehead had been killed while hurrying forward. Lieut. M. M. Grondin was also killed and Lieut. A. F. Major died after penetrating the German lines, as previously mentioned. Major Powell, though wounded, remained at duty until the new line was established, and then handed over the forward area to Lieut. R. A. Pelletier, who, though twice blown up and once rendered unconscious for a time, commanded until the Battalion was relieved. Lieut. J. E. McKenna was wounded in the hand, but did not leave his post; other casualties not previously mentioned including Lieuts. Dick Worrall, T. A. Evans, R. D. Torrance, R. C. MacKenzie, R. H. Walker, R. G. Marion, and C. L. O'Brien, the first, and the last two, original members of the Regiment who had been commissioned from the ranks.

Amongst the other ranks losses were severe. Company Sergeant-Major R. W. Rankin, of No. 1 Coy., was killed while trying to penetrate the German wire; Coy. Sergt.-Major G. Armstrong, of No. 3 Coy., was also killed during the attack, as was Coy. Sergt.-Major L. Duhamel, of No. 4 Coy. Many other valuable N.C.O's. were killed or wounded before the Battalion was relieved, the day's work costing the Regiment a total of 379 all ranks, killed, wounded and missing.

All during the attack the Battalion Medical Officer, Capt. W. J. McAlister, and the stretcher bearers under his command worked tirelessly to collect and evacuate the stream of wounded, much assistance being rendered by the Battalion Scouts and Intelligence men, under Lieut. C. G. Power, who, having guided the Regiment into the line, were ordered to Valley Farm. There they constructed a Regimental Aid Post. Later they advanced behind the Battalion, gathering valuable information and rescuing numerous wounded. When the aid post at Valley Cottages was rendered untenable by shell fire, they assisted Capt. McAlister in moving to a new post in Railway Dugouts. Throughout the whole engagement Lieut. Power set an example of high courage and displayed initiative in carrying out the varied duties falling to his lot.


Early on the morning of June 4th the Royal Montreal Regiment was relieved from the front line by the 2nd Canadian Battalion and withdrew to Dominion Lines, moving to Patricia Lines on the afternoon of June 5th. While retiring through Zillebeke Village Capt. R. W. Frost, for the third time in 24 hours, was blown to the ground by a shell. Too dazed to walk, he was carried to Railway Dugouts, where he recovered and whence, on the following morning, he hastened to duty with the Battalion. He reported and expected to take over his company without delay, but, in view of the severe battering he had received, the Commanding Officer of the 14th ordered him temporarily to the Canadian rest station at Mont des Cats.

While marching back on the morning of June 4th the Royal Montreal Regiment, on the Ypres-Vlamertinghe Road, reached the transport lines of an Imperial artillery unit, the men of which had just prepared breakfast. With that quick sympathy for those who have been "in it", the Imperials called to the Royal Montrealers to come and help themselves, thus earning the gratitude of a Canadian Regiment. In the haste incidental to times of war no formal acknowledgment of the courtesy was given, or expected. Eleven years have passed, but the kindness has not been forgotten. Such incidents provide cement with which are bound the enduring walls of Empire.

On arrival at Dominion Lines Capt. F. W. Utton, without delaying for food or sleep, began preparation of those lists which it is the duty of the Adjutant to produce following a great battle. To assist in obtaining accurate information on which to base these, Lieut.-Col. Clark, who had returned from leave, called for volunteers to proceed to the scene of the attack on June 3rd and search the torn ground for wounded. Lieut. Beaton, Lieut. Nesbitt, and 50 other ranks responded to this appeal and moved off after the briefest possible rest. Pushing into all sorts of dangerous corners, this party rescued a number of wounded and buried many dead, among the latter being Corp. Scott, to whom a Military Medal had been awarded on the day of the attack. Throughout the search for wounded and the recovery of the bodies of the dead, Pioneer Sergt. Brayton accomplished valuable work which won recognition by award of the D.C.M. Unfortunately, 3 other ranks of the party were killed before the search came to an end.

On June 6th Private H. A. Davin was granted a commission and 20 other ranks were taken on strength from England, 150 other ranks following on June 7th, 15 on June 10th, and 308 on June 11th. On the 9th of the month Major-General A. W. Currie, C.B., commanding the 1st Canadian Division, visited the Battalion and addressed the men, a similar visit being paid on June 10th by Brig.-Gen. G. S. Tuxford, C.M.G., commanding the 3rd Brigade. Between the 6th and 12th of the month the Battalion equipped and reorganized and absorbed the men of the new drafts. At 5 p.m. on the 12th the unit moved from Dominion Lines to " D " Camp on the Vlamertinghe-Ouderdom Road, a party, under Capt. F. B. D. Larken, Battalion Paymaster, meeting the Regiment near its destination and directing the companies and details to billets. Hot tea, served on arrival, helped the men to forget the unpleasantness of a march in heavy rain.

At 1.30 a.m. on June 13th, Sir Julian Byng launched the 1st Canadian Division, under Major-General A. W. Currie, against the positions taken up by the Germans after the operations of June 2nd and 3rd. For the occasion the brigades of the Division were reconstructed, Brig.-Gen. Lipsett, on the right, commanding a brigade composed of the 1st, 3rd, 7th, and 8th Battalions, and Brig.-Gen. Tuxford's brigade on the left, being made up of the 2nd, 4th, 13th, and 16th Battalions. In reserve lay Brig.-Gen. Hughes, with a force composed of the 5th, 10th, 14th, and 15th Battalions. The actual assault was delivered by three battalions, the 3rd Battalion on the left, the 16th Battalion, Canadian Scottish, in the centre, and the 13th Battalion, Royal Highlanders of Canada, on the right. Roughly, these battalions had as their respective objectives Mount Sorrel, Hill 62, and the position to the north of Hill 62. Guns of all calibres were concentrated to support the attack, and on the flanks demonstrations and feint attacks were employed to mask the actual location of the assault.

The 14th Battalion was "in reserve" during the successful counterattack on June 13th, but it must not be inferred that the men lay idle. On the contrary, parties moved forward at intervals after June 7th, and worked in every conceivable manner to assist the troops chosen for the assault. Previous to, and during, the attack the 14th Battalion furnished the following parties:—

Party "A"—2 officers and 158 other ranks. This party carried material and worked in the captured front line, digging trenches to link up the flanks of the 13th and 16th Battalions. Lieut. H. A. Davin, who had been commissioned a few days previously, was in command and was killed, together with 15 of his men. Lieut. W. A. Bonshor, who had won the D.C.M. while serving as Regimental Sergeant-Major, was wounded, as were 13 other ranks. Twenty-one other ranks were blown up by shell fire, or picked off by enemy sharpshooters, the names of these men, pending definite information as to their fate, being added to the Battalion's roll of

missing, presumed killed.

Party "B"—1 officer and 38 other ranks. This party, under command of Lieut. H. E. Banks, carried small arm ammunition to the front line and supports. In passing through the enemy barrage one man was killed and one wounded. Three others failed to report and were, presumably, killed by shell fire.

Party "C"—54 other ranks. This party carried bombs from Brigade Reserve to the front line and supports. It suffered 7 casualties, 2 men being killed, 2 wounded, and 3 listed as missing.

Party "D"—42 other ranks. This party advanced with the attacking waves, attending to casualties and carrying stretcher cases to the dressing station. One man of the party was killed and another lost in the barrage.

Party "E"—2 oflBcers and 108 other ranks. This party carried ammunition and bombs. It also carried rations to the 13th and 16th Battalions. One man was wounded.

Party "F"—17 other ranks. This party, though employed on dangerous work, i.e. wiring, under the supervision of the Engineers, was fortunate in coming through without losses.

Party "G"—21 other ranks, who served as Battle Stops at specified points. No casualties.

Party "H"—2 officers and 108 other ranks. This party carried wire and entrenching material. One of its members was missing when the roll was called, and 2 were reported wounded.

To express appreciation of the work accomplished by the Royal Montreal stretcher bearers, Lieut.-Col. V. C. Buchanan, D.S.O., Commanding Officer of the 13th Battalion, Royal Highlanders of Canada, wrote to Lieut.-Col. Clark as follows:—

Dear Clark:—

I want to thank you most sincerely for allowing your Stretcher

Bearers to come up with the 13th in the recent show.

The men did their work splendidly and were the means of saving

many of our men's lives.

They certainly did well and showed great heroism in the way

they tended the wounded although exposed to heavy fire.

You will please express to these men the deep appreciation of

the 13th for the excellent work they did.

I regret the casualties you have suffered and the lives lost.

Yours sincerely,


Lieut.-Col. J. E. Leckie, Commanding Officer of the 16th Battalion, Canadian Scottish, wrote in similar terms, and Major-General R. E. W. Turner, V.C., C.B., D.S.O., sent a note from Headquarters of the 2nd Canadian Division to congratulate the 14th on "the splendid work lately carried out".

At 7 p.m. on June 14th the Royal Montreal Regiment moved forward from Brigade Reserve into Brigade Support, Headquarters being established at Swan Chateau and the companies located three in the grounds of Chateau Seagard and one at Moated Farm. Here the Battalion remained for five days, providing working parties and training the recently joined drafts in the details of trench routine. Following the period in Brigade Support, the Battalion moved by bus to Kenora Camp, there to spend four days in Divisional Reserve.

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This photo is the scene of the 14th Battalion counter attack on June 3, 1916 (Note the photo is online at Library and Archives Canada link and the caption say July 1916 charge - this photo is in Fetherstonhaugh's book so I will go along with his caption, written in 1927).


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This photo is of German trenches destroyed by artillery during the battle, link.


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For my own small contribution, this is a platoon photo of men from the 28th Bn. Many of these men were killed or wounded when German mines were blown in their positions. All the dead have no known grave and are commemorated on the Menin Gate.


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I second all that's been said .. great job Chris.


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The following is an excerpt from the Borden Battery Motor Machine Gun Battery's war diary and its reaction during the Battle of Mount Sorrel. [All spelling and grammar mistakes have been retained]


Tue., May 30, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Showers in the A.M. Fine in P.M.

Our Aeroplanes active between 4.00 P.M. and dusk. Intermittent Artillery duels during the day. Machine Gun and rifle fire very active after dark and all during the night. At 9.30 A.M our Anti-Aircraft Guns on the Ypres Road brought down an enemy machine which was able to land in its own territory. At 10 A.M. one of our machines was hit and dropt about a hundred yards from Sardine Box Pilot killed.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Wed., May 31, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Cloudy

Enemy shelling the back roads, Comines Canal from 4 to 6.30 P.M. Our Planes were very active from 4.30 P.M to dark Rifle and Machine Gun Fire very active during the night.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Thu., Jun 1, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Lieut. Battersby relieved Lieut. Currier at Sept. Post. Weather fine. British Observation balloon broke loose during the evening, and drifted over the german lines and was shelled very heavily without any apparent effect. After a heavy bombardment of our lines the enemy attacked and took part of our front lines just south of Hooge, held at the time by the 7th Bgde. , 3rd Canadian Division.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Fri., Jun 2, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Fine

The Germans again opened an intense bombardment of our lines just south of Hooge, commencing at 7.00 A.M. At Noon they attacked and took about a mile of our front line coming through over 700 yds in depth. They took over 500 men and Officers prisoners, including [inserted by hand. Brig.] Genl. Mercer and Brigadier Genl. V.S.A. Williams. The Canadians counter-attacked and took back part of the line inflicting heavy losses on the enemy. We had to wear tear goggles owing to the tear shells. Our 12’’ guns fired all night. [ Inserted by hand. Genl. Mercer was afterwards found to have been killed; His body was recovered and he was buried with military honors at Relinnighelst.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Sat., Jun 3, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Fine

Very heavy reciprocal bombardment all day. 14 British Aeroplanes passed over on a raiding expedition We saw one falling behind the enemy’s lines. The enemy set one of our Stores of S.A.A. on fire near Ypres. All stood to all night with everything as we were expecting an attack. All the 2nd Division stood too all night. Placed our Machine Guns in shell holes in advance in the open to command country north of the canal. At 8.00 P.M. a violent attack was made north of Hill 60 which lasted about an hour. The actual dispositions of these attacks were very plainly visible from our Gun Positions near Sardine Box Emplacement.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Sun., Jun 4, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE


At 1 A.M. a fierce bombing attack was made by the Canadians at the same moment a fient attack was made by the British division in front of Kemmel to relieve the pressure at Hooge. Stood to all night. Several shells hit our Parapet without exploding saving us casualities.

Standing to at “A” Camp.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Mon., Jun 5, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Cloudy.

The detatchment of the 24th Can. Inf. Battn. at Sept. Post was relieved by the Kings Liverpool Regt., 3rd Imperial Division. Huns attacked over Hill 60 but the 8th Can. Inf. Battn. immediately counter attacked and bombed them out, the bombers displaying great enthousasiam while carrying out their task. At 11.30 P.M. Lt. Holland and Lt. Currier and four guns arrived and took up positions near ecluse No. 6. on the Ypres Comines Canal.

At 11.30 P.M. took over Nos 1.2.and 4. tunnels and Gordon Post with 4 Machine guns and Officers and men previously detailed to “A” Camp, Major Holland V.C. making his Headquarters at Bedford House. Heavy shelling of all Calibres of guns and trench Mortars on our left from 12.30 to 1.30 P.M.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Tue., Jun 6, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather;- Raining in the A.M and Cloudy and clearing in the P.M.

Early in the Afternoon the enemy heavily shelled our front, Comines Canal and the Bluff. Our Artillery retaliating vigourously. Our ‘Planes active during the evening and night. Intermittent shelling during the night.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Wed., Jun 7, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Raining in the A.M. Cloudy P.M.

Lieut. Currier relieved Major Holland at Bedford House from 11. A.M. to Midnight, Lieut. Holland taking charge of the guns at the Tunnells, Bluff and Gordon Post. Intermittent shelling all day. Our ‘Planes active during the evening and after dark. Considerable Machine Gun and Rifle fire during the night.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Thu., Jun 8, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Cloudy.

Intermittent shelling all day. Enemy and our ‘Planes active during the afternoon and evening. Heavy rifle and Machine Gun Fire during the night. Capt. P.A.G. MacCarthy returned from leave to Paris.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Fri., Jun 9, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Showers

Intermittent shelling by both sides during the day. Things fairly normal. Machine Gun and rifle Fire active after dark. Capt. MacCarthy and 12 men took over two positions from the 4th Bgde. Machine Gun Company at Strong Point No. ? and La Chappelle Farm. Left billets 9.30 A.M. completed change at 1. A.M 10th inst.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Sat., Jun 10, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Cloudy

Our Artillery bombarding very heavily about 1.30 A.M. on out left. Huns vigourously shelling the Bluff in the morning. Artillery exchanges during the day. 2 Hun’ Planes manouvreing over the salient at dusk Stood to all night. Major Holland VC visited all gun positions about Midnight.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Sun., Jun 11, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Showers

Our Artillery opened at about 1.30 A.M and again at Noon. Intermittent Artillery duels during the afternoon. No ‘Planes or observation Balloons up. General activity on both sides during the night.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Mon., Jun 12, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Raining

Our Artillery opened up and heavily bombarded the enemy at 1.30 A.M., noon and 8. P.M. Quieting the Bosches each time. Much rifle and Machine Gun Fire all night in front of Zillebecke.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Tue., Jun 13, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Raining.

Our Artillery opened up an intense bombardment at 12.45 A.M. and carried on until 10. A.M. Enemy replying on our Front line trenches, supports and rear lines of communication. Intermittent shelling the rest of the day. About 1.30 A.M after a very heavy bombardment by our Artillery our infantry went over and took back the trenches the bosches took on the 2nd . Stood to all night.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Wed., Jun 14, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Rainy and cold.

Considerable activity of Artillery on both sides. We had no one hit during the attacks but some very close calls. Stood to all night. Much Machine Gun and Rifle fire all night and some trench mortars were very busy.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Thu., Jun 15, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Cloudy and showery

Intermittent shelling during the day by both sides. Major Holland and Lieut. Currier left for the Billets about 12 Midnight. Lieut. Holland was put in charge of the Guns. Machine Gun Fire during the night [inserted by hand. very heavy.]

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

Fri., Jun 16, 1916 GODEWAERSVELDE

Weather.- Fine

Lieut. Currier relieved Lieut. Holland at 11.P.M. as Lieut. Holland had to come to Billets in connection with his leave. Heavy rifle and Machine Gun Fire during the night. After a heavy bombardment enemy tried to take back the lost trenches but our counter artillery and Machine Gun fire prevented him from doing so.

---signed P.A.G. MacCarthy, Capt. O.C

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No. The Canadian Corps moved to occupy, defend and attack from many locations on the Western Front during the Great War.

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  • 10 years later...

"...And thrice again the wood that travestied its name of Sanctuary, where the stripped and splintered boles of once lovely trees seemed to point accusing fingers at an unheeding sky, and endlessly, the shells fell..."

(Lt. H.L. Holloway, 49th (Edmonton) Battalion, 7th C.I.B., 3rd Canadian Division. January 1960, The Forty-Niner Magazine, Pages 7 & 8.)

One hundred years ago tomorrow, June 2nd. Remembering all those killed, wounded and captured at Mount Sorrel, Sanctuary Wood and Observatory Ridge; especially those of the 1st and 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles and The Princess Patricia's. They are not forgotten.

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The presence of the Governor General's Horse Guards and their Association at the Menin Gate will provide a suitable Canadian representation on 2nd June 2016.

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My grandfather Thomas Howes was in the 60th Battalion and was wounded in the battle. I recently visited Sanctuary Wood for the first time and it was quite emotional being in the same part of the Front that he fought in exactly 100 years ago.

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