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2nd Battalion Canadian Machine Gun Corps
War Diary - April 1918
Transcribed from National Archives of Canada, Records of the Department of Militia and Defence, RG9, Series III-D-3 (War Diaries), Volume 4985, 2nd Canadian Machine Gun Battalion, March 1918 - April 1919; Microfilm Reel T-10817 (Files 621 & 622). © National Archives of Canada. Reproduced by Permission.
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Army Form C. 2118.
Place Date/Hr  Summary of Events and Information
BASSEUX 1 The 2nd Canadian M.G. Battalion are now in line taken over from the 3rd (British) Division, and part from the Guards Division. The line when taken over was in an "obscure" state. It was not certain whether the GREEN LINE was still held by our forces or the enemy. On the day following our relief of the 3rd Division the enemy attacked the Guards with 3 Battalions. The attack was repulsed with great loss to the enemy, who only reached our trenches in one or two isolated spots, and from these he was speedily ejected. The Machine Gun defences have been organised as well as can be done in a few days. Dispositions are as follows. 2 Companies plus eight other guns are in forward system, 12 guns are in support in the PURPLE LINE, and 12 Guns in Reserve at BASSEUX. Details of gun positions are as follows.  [App.1 Disp. State]
Work is being done every night to (a) improve positions (b) to stock positions with 10,000 rounds S.A.A. each, and two boxes of bombs, water, gun, oil etc.
   7 pm Enemy aeroplane dropped eight bombs in vicinity of gun positions at S.5.c.30.05.
   9.45 pm Word received over telephone that S.O.S. signal observed. The 14th Canadian M.G. Company were ordered to "Stand To" at once. The 4th Canadian M.G. Company were telephones to same effect also the 5th Company. The 5th Company's guns were all firing when Lieut Hobson was spoken to at 10 o'clock. Guns of 4th Company fired 16,000 rounds on S.O.S. Lines. The 5th Company fired 6,000 rounds.
   10.55 pm Message was received from the 4th Company "Front is quiet".
   11 pm "G" Branch Division reported situation normal. The 14th Company were ordered to 'Stand by' but unhitch horses from wagons.
   out night
The following harassing fire was carried out throughout hours of darkness:-
4th Canadian M.G. Company:- 9,000 rds.
   Roads N.25.b.3.9.  to  N.26.c.0.8.
   Trenches N.20.d
5th Canadian M.G. Company:- 10,000 rounds.
   Targets  S.6.b.2.3.  to  S.6.d.1.8.
   M.36.a.9.9.  to  M.36.b.6.4.
   S.6.d.00.70.  to  S.6.b.90.10.
Casualties 1. O.R. Wounded.
Effective Strength this date 43 Officers and 1006 Other Ranks
2  9.00 am Col. WEIR, Major BASEVI, and Lieut SALISBURY made reconnaissance of PURPLE LINE and TELEGRAPH HILL SWITCH.
   4.00 pm Low flying enemy aeroplane crossing lines M.25.d. to N.13.c. height about 800 ft. They sailed overhead for 15 minutes during which time our A.A. Machine Guns fired 1,200 rounds at them.
   9.30 pm "G" Branch advised that much movement of Germans with packs on had been observed in N.25.d.9.8. and on road in N.20.A.&B. Orders at once sent to Os.C. 4th & 5th Companies to fire at least 10,000 rounds on each target in harassing fire. [App.2 Disp. State]
Casualties 1 Killed 3 Wounded and 1 Wounded accidentally.
3   2 am
   to 6 am
Guns carried out harassing fire as per pre-arranged programme on the following positions:-
2 Guns  On Road N.20.c.75.00 to N.20.c.50.40. 5,500 rounds
2 Guns On Road Junction and Trench N.26.c.00.70. 5,500 rounds
2 Guns On Road M.36.b.40.45 to M.36.b.80.00. 5,000 rounds
2 Guns  N.36.d.90.90.  to  M.36.b.60.40. 1,200 rounds
2 Guns  T.1.a.65.40.  to  S.6.b.85.10. 700 rounds
             Total Rounds Fired 17,900 rounds
   6 am 17 Guns answered the S.O.S. Signal that was seen on left front. 9,500 rounds in all were fired.
   11.45 am Operation Order No. 31/81 issued. All positions were re-sected and guns accurately located on the map.  [App. 3 O.O.31/81]
   7.00 pm A Patrol of the 19th Battalion reported presence of a working party in "No Mans Land" to Lieut J.A. Ramsay 4th Company. This officer at once switched two guns on to the target and fired 2,300 rounds into them.
   11.00 pm Heavy bombardment of our lines by the enemy, evidently in conjunction with a counter-attack by the enemy on AYETTE, which was taken by the 32nd Division on our right this A.M. This bombardment died away at 1.00 p.m. 4th inst.
Gas shells were fired into Railway cutting at M.21 & 27. Crews in vicinity wore gas helmets for ½ hour.
During the day Aircraft was inactive owing to poor visibility.
Casualties for the past 24 hours was 2 O.Rs. Killed and 1 O.R. Wounded. The Other Ranks killed Privates PUDDLE & ELAND were hit by enemy H.E. shell when working improving the trench.
Pte. WEBB Killed in Action 2nd inst. was buried in BELLACOURT Cemetry (Map Ref. R.25.c.3.2).
Effective Strength this date 43 Officers and 996 Other Ranks.
4  1.00 am Inter-Battalion relief completed. Harassing fire was carried out between dusk and 11.p.m. 3rd inst. and 2.a.m.
   6.00 am and 6.a.m. 4th inst. 24,000 rounds were fired on the following targets:-
   M.36.d.9.9.  to  M.36.b.6.4.
   M.36.b.50.55.  to  M.36.b.80.00.
   N.20.c.75.00.  to  N.20.c.50.40.
   T.1.a.65.40.  to  S.6.b.85.10.
   6.35 am The enemy laid down a stiff barrage from N.13.Central to M.18.d.6.0. to M.24.d.6.0. well west of our Front Line. No S.O.S. Signal was observed but one green flare went up from N.13.c. and one from vicinity of N.19.c.0.0. Machine Guns opened up a steady rate of fire, but owing to steadiness of the bombardment as much ammunition as possible was conserved, in expectation of direct targets. 4,800 rounds were fired before the bombardment died away. Four guns of the 4th Company are now in Front line N.13.b.05.78. - N.13.a.90.78. They are supported by bombing posts of one Platoon of Infantry and 1 Lewis Gun. With considerable difficulty 10 boxes bolted S.A.A. and three boxes S.A.A. have been carried up to their positions.
   5.30 pm The 14th Company left BASSEUX to relieve the 5th Canadian M.G. Company in the line.
   6.15 pm The following message received from "G" 2nd Canadian Division "The enemy has attacked in force South of the SOMME today. Prisoners state that offensive is to be resumed along whole front immediately. It is essential for prisoners to be obtained tonight, and strong Battle Patrols will be sent out for this purpose. Brigade in Divisional Reserve will be prepared to man PURPLE system at short notice. The Machine Gun Company in Divisional Reserve will move tonight to WAILLY ready to man positions in PURPLE system".
   6.20 pm Messenger sent on side car to overtake the 14th Canadian M.G. Company with message that relief is cancelled. All companies in forward area advised of cancellation of relief. [Appdx. 5. Wire]
   7 pm Movement Order 28/260 issued. [App. 6 R.F. 28-260]
   10.15 pm Following wire received from Division "Germans resumed attacks today against French in neighbourhood of MONTDIDIER and also against our 19th Corps immediately South of the SOMME and are reported to have gained a little ground. In the event of Germans attacking astride river SCARPE tomorrow morning units will carry our instructions contained in our Wire G.5. of today, and in addition will increase patrol activity just before dawn, to discover whether Germans have parties out to cover assembly of troops, and will arrange to get information passed back quickly in order that counter preparations may be put down by our Artillery. 14th Canadian M.G. Company will man positions PURPLE Line as soon as heavy bombardment commences The 6th Brigade and 4th Brigade will each detail two Companies as nucleus of Garrisons and rallying points in intermediate line".
Orders to this effect were immediately forwarded to 14th Company.
   10.30 pm Harassing fire carried out from dusk till 10.30 p.m. on following targets:-
   N.20.b.95.20.  to  N.20.b.50.90.   N.20.a.20.20.  to N.26.b.05.70.
   N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.75.   N.20.c.40.75.
29,500 rounds fired in all.
Effective Strength 43 Officersand 2 Other Ranks.
5  1.00 am Wire received from Division that prisoner had been captured by 4th Brigade, whom on examination stated that an attack was eminent on this front, probably on 6th inst. All is in readiness so no further orders issued.
   2.00 am Harassing fire carried out from 2.00 a.m. until dawn on same targets as from dusk till 10.30 p.m. 4th inst.
   5.00 am Heavy Artillery fire on front. All crews "Stood To". Many crews were obliged to wear S.B.R's for about 1 hour owing to gas shells. Railway cutting in M.21.a. came in for considerable gas.
   7.30 am Hostile Artillery activity around gun positions started at midnight died down somewhat. Road running through M.20.d. & c. M.27.d. & a. heavily shelled with H.E. and gas. Strong concentration of gas was soon blown away by wind.
   9.20 am 'Phone message received from Division 'G' that S.O.S. signal had been observed on 1st Canadian Divisional Front (Division on Left). 'Phone message sent immediately to Companies in the line to this effect. Companies were all acquainted with situation before message reached them.
   9.30 am Enemy raided Right Battalion Left Brigade at approximately M.30.b.95.95. with parties about 30 strong. Many casualties were caused by our fire. Another party of about 100 strong with covering party of about 50 attacked Left Companies of Right Battalion about M.24.B. & D. These were driven off by M.G. Lewis Gun and rifle fire. 30 dead bodies were counted in front of our line.
   9.55 am Wire received that 4th Company had gun put out of action. Message despatched to Ordnance to this effect and limber at once sent to fetch new gun to Ordnance.
   11.20 am Orders issued that reliefs as per O.O. 31-81 be carried out night 5th inst.
   12.15 pm Enemy raided Left Battalion of 1st Division with about 100 men. These were easily driven off by Machine Gun and rifle fire.
   1.20 pm Two situation reports received, in which prisoners examinations were stated. In both cases prisoners now state that they know nothing of an offensive on this front.
   2.00 pm Tripod of 4th Company put out of action by shell fire. Ordnance requested to supply new one which was done at once.
   7-10 pm Indirect fire carried out on following targets:-
   N.20.b.95.20.  to  N.20.b.50.90.
   N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.75.
   N.19.a.20.20.  to  N.26.c.05.70.
   Midn. Inter-battalion relief as per 31-81 and 31-81/1 completed by midnight.
6  2-6 am Indirect fire carried out on same targets as 7/10 p.m. 5th inst. Total rounds fired during night 31,500.
   1 pm The following letter was forwarded to all companies:-
"1. The re-organization of the Machine Gun companies in this Battalion will be commenced at once.
2. The re-organization will be made as follows:-
No. 1 Company (14th and 5th Coys.)  O.C. Major Basevi J.
  "A" Battery  O.C. Lieut. White L.F. 14th Coy.
  "B" Battery  O.C. Lieut. Salisbury H.S. 14th Coy.
  "C" Battery  O.C. Lieut. Hobson G. 5th Coy.
  "D" Battery  O.C. Lieut. McBurney H.A. 5th Coy.
No. 2 Company (4th and 6th Coys.)  O.C. Major Pearce W.M.
  "E" Battery  O.C. Capt. McCamus J. 4th Coy.
  "F" Battery  O.C. Lieut. Ramsay J.A. 4th Coy.
  "G" Battery  O.C. Capt. Millican G.W.F. 6th Coy.
  "H" Battery  O.C. Lieut. Fleming R. 6th Coy.
3. Transport Officers
Lieut. Cowan P. will act as transport officer No. 1 Company.
Lieut. Millsap W.E. will act as transport officer No. 2 Company.
4. Transport of four companies will be pooled and following re-allotments made:-
Battalion Headquarters   2 G.S. Wagons;  1 G.S Limbered wagon;
Each Company   2 wagons, limbered G.S.; 2 Mess Carts; 2 Water Carts; 1 travelling kitchen.
Each Battery   6 limbers G.S.
5. All ranks must be made thoroughly acquainted with the new establishment.
6. Company Commanders will take up Central Headquarters, preferably Bde. H.Q. for Battery Commanders. Positions for Battery Commanders will be reconnoitred at once.
7. Communication must be established between Company Headquarters and all Battery Headquarters with telephones, and Lucas Lamps where possible. Batteries to be responsible that communication is kept up.
8. The forward is re-divided so that each company will have 3 Batteries in the line and one in Divisional Reserve at BRETENCOURT. (See attached tracing).
9. Locations of Battery Headquarters to be sent to this office by 6 p.m. 7th inst.
10. Date of re-adjustment of sectors to be notified later".
   3.55 pm E.A. crossed our lines at low altitude engaged by A.A. M.G's. 19000 rounds fired.
   7 pm Word received that suspected German relief was taking place in centre sector. Orders immediately issued to all companies to concentrate as many guns as possible on F.4. and F.5. Zones. (see Zone map).
4th Canadian M.G. Company fired 15,000 rounds on these targets in F.5. Zone.
   7.10 pm Following targets were also engaged between dusk and 10.00 p.m.:-
   S.6.d.4.8.  -  S.6.b.90.00.
   S.6.b.90.00.  -  T.1.a.4.2.
   M.36.d.9.7.  -  M.36.b.9.6.   Total rounds fired 29,000.
Prisoner captured night of 3rd/4th. On examination disclosed the fact that during raid in which he was captured M.G. fire was very effective, and that nightly harassing fire had caused four casualties on 3rd inst. during relief.
7   2 am Targets as 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. 6th inst. fired upon. Patrols were sent out 1100 yards by centre sector, so M.G. fire was switched to Left Centre and Right Centre.
   Noon Two Low Flying E.A. crossed our lines. Heavily engaged by our M.G's. One aeroplane returned fire on our gun at M.31.b.5.4. but without effect.
   8.30 pm Wire received stating that 1st Canadian Division had perceived large bodies of Infantry in full packs entering trenches in rear of area of Left flank Division. Orders immediately issued to Companies to double harassing fire programme and concentrate on area concerned. [Appendix 8 O.O. 31/102]
   9 p.m. Operation Order No. 31-102 issued, also letter 61-313.
   11.25 pm Wire received Gas shells falling M.5.b. Repeated by priority wire to all Companies. [R.F. 61/313 Appendix 9]
   midn't. Another wire received of gas being in various vicinities. 23,250 indirect fire carried out on F.4. and F.5. Zones owing to suspected enemy relief.
8   6 am Heavy bombardment of H.E. shrapnel and Gas. Another wire of Gas falling in various vicinities. 20 shells fell in M.24.a. Thought to be shorts from our own guns.
   7 am One E.A. crossed our lines flying at 3000 ft. Engaged by our M.G's with 200 rounds.
   11.30 am Two E.A. crossed lines and circled overhead at 2500 ft. 500 rounds were fired at them.
   5.30 pm Two E.A. flying at 2500 crossed lines. Our M.G.'s fired 550 rounds at them and caused them to return behind Bosche lines.
   Dusk till
   10 pm
Very little firing owing to relief.
9   12 am 15,000 rounds fired on F.2., F.3., and F.4. Zones. Relief complete at 2.30 a.m.
   Dawn Birmingham and Bristol Guns received a lot of M.G. Fire.
   9 am Hostile artillery active until noon on whole area. Guns in BIBLE Group came in for great amount of gas shelling. Guns at S.5.c.30.10. also shelled.
   Noon Operation Order received from Division "G" that the 2nd C.M.G. Battalion is to be relieved on 10th/15th. April. [Warning Order Appendix 10] D.M.G.O. of 5th Division called to see O.C. Battalion and arrangements were made regarding details of relief. Warning Order issued to all companies.
   3 pm Situation wire received from Division that enemy are attacking with four divisions, their Southern flank resting on the LA BASSEE CANAL. Orders were immediately issued to all Company Commanders to visit their respective G.O.C's. Brigades and show positions of their S.O.S. Lines, etc. [Appendix 11] [Appendix 12]
   4 pm Our artillery fired short into Glasgow, Bath, and Dublin guns, but did no damage.
   10 pm Trench Mortars firing into M.36.a.4.4. for three hours.
10  12 am
   - Dawn
Indirect fire carried out on F.4, 5, and 6 Zones, 42,000 rounds fired. [Appendix 13]
   9 am Wire received from Division that the relief by 5th. British Division is cancelled, and that Division will remain in present area. Word sent to all companies immediately. [Appendix 14]
   6 pm  Word received from Liaison Officer at 5th. Cdn. Inf. Bde. that German relief is suspected. Instructions were given that Liaison Officer co-ordinate time of firing and targets with Bde, Major, 5th. Cdn. Inf. Bde. and issue orders to M.G. Company Commanders accordingly. [Appendix 15] [Appendix 16]
   6.30 pm Quantity of gas shells fired into valley at M.16. and 22.
   7-9 pm Left Brigade advised O.C. that enemy relief suspected in that sector. All guns were laid on enemy approaches and tracks. 31,000 rounds were fired in all.
   9 pm Lieut. Col. Weir was called by wire to visit C.M.G.O. who informed him that a third Company of 32 Guns is to be added to each Canadian M.G. Battalion. The personnel (600 men and 12 officers) are to be drawn from the Infantry Battalions. They are to receive 5 or 6 days training and to proceed into the line at once, strengthened by 3 gunners from existing companies.
   11.45 pm The following wire was received from Division. "From deductions made by Army enemy may make an attack tomorrow on frontage which may include this Divisional front". Communicated to all Coy Commanders immediately by Priority wire.
11  12mn
    - 2 am 
Indirect harassing fire as between 7 & 9 p.m. 10th inst., carried out on:-
Targets F.5. F.6. & F.4.  [Appendix 17]
Steady shelling by H.E. & Gas shells at Whiskey & Blighty Groups. Otherwise fairly quiet.
   6 am
    - 10 am 
Enemy fire rather heavy, with barrage over front line system. Enemy raided at 9.30 a.m. but was driven back with loss on Left Battalion frontage.
   2 pm One gun put out of action by German artillery fire. Complete spare part kit blown away.
   5.20 pm Two low-flying E.A. crossed line at 2520 ft. Guns fired 1200 rounds.
   10 pm Relief of "A" & "B" Batteries by "E" & "F" Batteries completed.
12 12.05am Enemy artillery very active. Our guns replying vigorously all night until daylight. [Appendix 18]
   7.10 pm Targets engaged by harassing fire as follows:-
S.6C40.00 1,000
S.6A.80.00 1,000
TIC 70.20 1,000
M36b.95.42 1,500
S.6b.40.09 1,500
M36b.57.55 1,500
N13d.3070-N19b.70.70. 3,000
N20b.60.80.  to  Nna.90.90. 3,000
N19d.10.40. 5,000
N25b.35.90  to  N25b.90.00. 5,000
   9 pm First party of 600 men who are to form a third Company with 32 guns arrived. Capt. J.A. McCAMUS M.C. is placed temporarily in charge of Company by addition of 4 N.C.O's per Battery is to make them fit to take their places in Line in 5 days.
   10 pm Position M.23.65.10. shelled with light H.E. and Gas shells. Aeroplanes very active, and many enemy balloons observed owing to good visibility. [Appendix 19]
13 The guns for the 600 men of No. 3 Company did not arrive. Battery Commanders were withdrawn from the line and appointed temporarily. Batteries are named as follows:-
"J" Battery "L" Battery
"K" Battery "M" Battery
   9 pm Secret letter Third Army No. G.S. 59/9 Received. (Third Army letter G.S.59/9) [Appendix 20]
   10 pm Five lorries, drivers, 32 guns and all spare parts arrived, in charge of Lieut. CLEGHORN. These are to form the transport of the 3rd Company of 2nd Machine Gun Battalion. Abel gun heavily shelled, and officer in charge (Lieut. McBURNEY) decided to move it to new position further from a road, which he considered, drew fire. Work being done to improve positions and Batty HQ at M17b.20.45 was constructed. Guns at S2a.90.60 came in for heavy shelling with Gas.
14  12 am M.G's cooperated with Artillery in a combined shoot. Harassing Fire carried out until dusk on following targets:-
M36b.51.55 3,500
M36b.95.42 3,500
S6b.40.07 3,500
T1b.20.65 4,000
T1b.40.65 3,500
N26c.10.80  to  N26a.70.80 4,000
N19b.90.10  to  N20b.70.80 4,000
N20a.10.70  to  N26b.50.80 4,000
N15a.70.80 3,500
N19d.10.40 4,000
Total 37,500 Rounds
Lieut. FILDES was loaned by the 27th Battalion to this Battalion to act as Assistant Adjutant. He at once started a thorough reorganization of "A" and "Q" Branches of Unit, owing to it having grown beyond all limits. Card Index system for men started, and with the original A.F.B. 213 of Unit used as a base, made out a complete Nominal Roll of the Battalion. Lieut. SMART was loaned by the same Battalion to act as Assistant Quartermaster as owing to the great increase in personnel, this step was found necessary.
Considerable work done during the night in constructing dugouts, latrines, and deepening trenches.
   10.30 Area around MERCATEL was shelled for about two hours.
   11 pm Position at M23c shelled for an hour with all shells. Small damage done to some gun equipment by this fire.
   11.15 Word received from Division that there is considerable enemy movement in NO MAN'S LAND especially in front of Division on our right flank. The O.C. Right Company (Major PEARCE) was telephoned and ordered to fire as many guns as possible in F1a.F2a & b, to endeavour to cut this movement down.
15 7.10 pm Fire carried out in enemy tracks, routes, and approaches. Following targets well engaged:-
F2e 3,000
F3a 3,000
F3c 2,250
F3b 3,000
F2L 3,000
F1b 3,000
F4c 4,000
F5c 3,500
F5a 4,000
F5d 3,000
F6a 4,000
Total 35,750 Rounds.
This firing was done in conjunction with Artillery and in cooperation with Infantry Brigades.
  5.15 am
  - 5.50 am
All M.G's fired a special shoot in conjunction with Artillery, but although all M.G's fired, artillery did not open up.
Corporal HICKMAN. D.C.M. with four men have been out for two days in positions in front of their positions on TELEGRAPH HILL, sniping. They claim many targets of Huns at from 1100 to 1300 yds, being principally enemy carrying parties with corrugated iron. Several hits were claimed. Work done on improvements to dugouts, construction of latrines and M.G. signs for PLAYER, CAPSTAN, TUCKETT and BILLINGS guns. Quiet morning. Cpl. HICKMAN carried on with sniping from TELEGRAPH HILL, apparently with good results. APPLE and TULL guns were moved to new emplacements which had been prepared and carefully camouflaged.
  4.30 pm Wire received that enemy will carry out relief tonight in front. Guns were all concentrated on approaches, etc., to area concerned.
Another shoot was arranged in cooperation with Artillery which was carried out with success in a suspected enemy relief.
C.M.G.O. and General BURSTALL made a short inspection of men of No. 3 Company who are receiving five days training, whilst the men were at work. The schedule laid down is necessarily condensed as far as possible, and is chiefly composed of Immediate Action and loading, with as much firing as can be done.
Captain MILLICAN M.C. made a reconnaissance of the Army line with C.M.G.O. They selected positions for M.G's. Engineers are to put M.G. positions in under supervision of Lieut. MUCH and six N.C.O's of this Battalion. Work to commence 10.00 a.m. on 16th inst. Relief of "H" Battery by "G" Battery was carried out without any hitch.
   Dusk &
   Mdnt. to
Indirect fire was carried out on following targets :-
N.26.a.10.10.  to  N.26.a.90.50. 3,000
N.19.b.90.20.  to  N.20.c.70.80. 4,000
N.20.a.10.65.  to  N.20.b.40.75. 3,000
N.19.a.10.40. 3,000
N.13.a.20.75.  to  N.19.b.85.90. 4,000
N.20.a.55.00.  to  N.21.a.1.1. 4,000
T.1.b.35.36.  to  N.32.b.0.0. 4,000
T.7.b.20.55.  to 4,000
Total 29,000 Rounds.
16  9.50 am Word received from G.S.O. 1. that Bosche are in front line of Division on right. Word sent by phone to O.C. No. 1 Coy. who was not acquainted with the fact, but who said that the front was quiet except for our own guns which were firing hard.
It was afterwards determined that Bosche had occupied 400 yards of trench south of our Division Boundary. Col. WEIR who was at the time making a tour of the line was informed by observers that Huns were re-inforcing their troops in our lines. He immediately gave verbal orders to turn BELFAST and CORK Guns to fire over area over which enemy re-inforcements would have to travel. In addition, GLASGOW, BATH, and DUBLIN Guns were switched on same area. No direct fire was obtained, but some thousands of rounds were fired indirect.
   11.00 am Word received that party of Bombers of 19th Canadian Battalion succeeded in driving enemy out of trenches they had occupied, and handed same over to Division on right flank, who were apparently not aware of anything unusual occurring.
   2.45 pm Enemy shelled MERCATEL ROAD. M.28.d.30.55. to M.27.d.40.90. This shelling followed immediately after two wagons had passed along, as it is in plain observation of the Bosche.
   4.00 pm DAUGHTER and FARO Guns received direct hits on positions. No casualties but guns were moved 30 yards left. "A" Battery relieved by "B" Battery and "D" Battery will be relieved by "A" Battery.
   11.15 pm Relief complete. 11.15 p.m.
17 Day fairly quiet. Time spent in salvaging frames for dugouts, and constructing same. An Infantry Battalion assisted to wire some positions. Harassing fire carried out for hours of darkness 17th/18th.
N.19.d.31.00.  -  N.25.b.85.10. 3,000
N.26.a.10.10.  -  N.26.a.90.50. 3,000
N.19.d.10.40.  - 3,000
N.19.b.90.20.  -  N.20.c.70.75. 3,500
N.15.a.70.75.  - 3,000
N.31.a.15.25.  -  N.31.a.60.55. 3,500
N.31.a.90.05.  -  N.31.b.30.87. 3,000
N.36.a.90.85.  -  N.31.c.15.05. 3,000
N.31.b.45.50.  - 3,000
M.36.b.40.90.  -  N.36.b.70.35. 3,000
M.25.d.28.95.  - 3,000
34,000 Rounds Fired
18 Four British soldiers captured during first stage of German Offensive escaped to our lines. They report that enemy intends to resume his operations against AMIENS with PARIS as his objective, but knows of no intent to attack on this Division front.
   2 pm Operation Order issued. [OO.No.31.85 Appendix 21]
19 Harassing Fire carried out during hours of darkness as follows:-
N.31.a.80.20.  to  N.31.b.30.92. 4,000
N.31.a.20.36.  to  N.31.d.60.55. 4,000
T.1.c.50.85.  to  T.1.c.80.20
T.1.d.35.45. 4,000
N.26.a.85.55.  to  N.20.d.50.00. 4,000
N.25.d.32.08.  to  N.25.d.95.80. 4,000
N.19.d.30.00.  to  N.25.c.85.15. 4,000
N.25.d.25.90. 4,500
Total 32,500 Rounds
Enemy artillery more active. Positions came in for H.E. & Gas shelling at 4.30 p.m. Road M.27.c.27.82. to M.26.d.30.52. was shelled with H.E. Engineers worked on shelters for guns at M.16.c.16.33. and M.16.c.44.45. Work on dugout at M.23.c.5.1. making good progress. 11 steps have now been put down. Considerable S.A.A. is being salvaged from old camps that lie close to the front line. There is a large one in "No Man's Land."
   8.15 Word received from "G" Branch that S.O.S. seen on left flank.
   8.20 Wired through to O.C. Left Company (Major BASEVI) who reported S.O.S. seen, and all left guns firing, but no knowledge of what was actually happening, but thought it was a raid on Division on left flank.
   8.30 Another signal seen to the right of first. 11,500 rounds fired on S.O.S. but no direct targets obtained.
   8.55 O.C. No. 1 Company reported all quiet on Brigade front.
20 Harassing Fire carried out during hours of darkness as follows:-
T.1.c.00.15.  to  T.1.b.25.55. 4,000
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.75.40. 4,000
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.d.60.55. 4,000
T.7.b.20.50. 3,000
T.1.c.50.80.  to  T.1.c.75.25. 4,000
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.90.10. 2,000
N.19.b.90.15.  to  N.20.c.70.80. 3,000
N.19.d.10.35. 2,500
N.20.d.10.65.  to  N.20.b.40.75. 2,500
N.20.b.60.80.  to  N.21.a.75.98. 3,000
N.13.d.30.75.  to  N.19.b.85.95. 3,500
Total 35,500 Rounds Fired
Work on Battery Headquarters for EDEN GROUP completed. (M.17.b.20.45.) Splinter proofs have been constructed for PLAYERS, TUCKETTS, WOODBINE, GOLD FLAKE, 30 foot dugout nearly complete for FARO, DAUGHTER, MOSES, BULL. Communications are installed between them.
   9.00 -
   10.30 pm
Many Gas shells into S.2.d. and S.3.c.
   9.30 pm Gas masks had to be worn at Battery Headquarters "B", for 30 minutes.
   11.30 pm Heavy shrapnel barrage put on sunken road in N.22.d. and quantity of gas at M.23.c. The two Batteries in Division Reserve took up positions in forward area. As follows:-
"D" Battery.  H.Qrs. M.16.a.40.65.
4 Guns Reserve at M.16.a.40.65.
2 Guns M.28.a.35.45.
2 Guns M.21.a.75.70.
"B" Battery.  H.Qrs. M.27.a.38.16.
2 Guns M.32.d.50.25.
2 Guns M.29.a.50.10.
2 Guns M.27.a.05.70.
   5.00 No. 3 Company moved up to BRETENCOURT where they are to stay until tomorrow, when they will take up place in front line.
21 Harassing Fire carried out on following targets during hours of darkness:-
M.36.d.85.85.  to  N.31.c.15.10. 3,000
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.d.60.58. 3,000
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.70.30. 3,000
T.7.b.20.50. 3,000
T.1.c.50.80.  to  T.1.c.75.25. 3,000
S.6.b.90.15.  to  T.1.b.30.55. 3,000
N.21.c.00.00.  to  N.21.c.85.00. 3,000
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.21.c.85.00. 3,000
N.19.b.90.20.  to  N.20.c.70.75. 3,000
N.19.d.10.40. 2,000
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 3,000
32,000 Rounds Fired.
Honours and Awards.  The following N.C.O's and men are awarded the Military Medal. Authority London Gazette No. 30573 dated 12-3-18.
427184 Cpl Hills, J. 68001 Sgt Christie, J.
57318 Sgt White, E.J. 910115 Pte Duxberry, O.B.
135305 Cpl Saint, J. 79728 Cpl Donald, R.
447377 Sgt Bradford, L.E.
The following N.C.Os and men are awarded Bar to Military Medal. (Authority as above.)
69194 Sgt Caldwell, L. 423395 Sgt Eustace, F.
Work carried on all day at improving dugouts and constructing splinter proof shelters. Enemy aircraft very active all day, and guns fired 1,700 rounds at them. German relief suspected in two positions of Division Front, so Guns were trained for Harassing Fire as follows :-
Targets. F4.a. 4,000
F.4.c. 4,000
F.4.b. 4,000
F.4.e. 4,000
F.5.c. 4,000
F.5.d. 4,000
Route. N.20.a.5.5.  to  N.21.a.1.1. 4,000
30,000 Rounds fired.
   10.50 pm Relief by No. 2 Company completed by No. 3 Company.
22 CULVERT, AGNEY, AND FICHEUX were all shelled throughout daytime. New positions were reconnoitred for GOLD FLAKE, and WOOD BINE Guns at M.10.c.51.70. and work commenced on constructing emplacements. Sunken road in M.22.d. & M.23.c.heavily shelled. The valley south of M.23.e.5.1. was filled with Gas by enemy shelling.
All crews working hard at reclaiming and retimbering old dugouts which were stripped when the British advanced last spring, but have now been recommissioned for service.
Headquarters, and Officer Commanding Battalion, moved to LA RIVIERE.
Honours and Awards.  The following N.C.O's and men have been awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal. (Authy London Gazette 30601 dated 26-3-18).
61221 Sgt Chamberland, E. 71196 Sgt Murray, W.
721950 L/C Sillers, W.
The following other rank has been awarded the Military Medal. (Authy London Gazette No. 30573 dated 12-3-18.
1004093 Pte Anderson, M.J.
The following N.C.O. has been awarded the Bar to the Military Medal. :-
424444 Cpl (A/Sgt) Bierd, E.C.
(Authority as above.)  [Appendix 22 Appendix 23]
24 Harassing Fire carried out during hours of darkness as follows:-
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.d.60.58. 5,000
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.70.30. 5,000
T.7.b.50.85.  to  T.7.b.52.30. 3,000
T.1.d.40.35. 3,000
T.1.c.50.80.  to  T.1.c.75.25. 3,000
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 2,500
N.20.b.45.70.  to  N.15.c.75.00. 2,500
N.25.b.75.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 2,000
N.26.c.0.0. 2,500
N.13.b.90.90.  to  N.14.a.90.90. 2,500
N.20.a.20.30.  to  N.20.b.10.10. 2,500
Road N & S through N.23.c. 2,500
Track N.25.d.00.75. - N.26.c.00.60. 2,500
Total 38,500 Rounds Fired.
1850 Rounds fired at Enemy Aircraft.
Work continued in wiring gun positions with spider web wire. Great amount of salvage is being collected nightly from a deserted American Engineers (Railway) Camp just behind front line.
ADAM and EVE positions were shelled, and enemy bombardment was heavy on front of Division on left, this is evidently in retaliation for raid by that division. SERPENT and GARDEN came in for some of this barrage.
25 Harassing Fire carried out during hours of darkness as follows:-
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.d.60.58. 3,500
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.70.30. 3,500
S.6.a.25.50. 5,000
S.6.d.20.85.  to  S.6.b.98.25. 3,000
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 2,500
N.20.b.45.70.  to  N.25.c.75.00. 2,500
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 2,500
N.26.c.00.00. 2,500
Track N.13.b.90.90.  to  N.14.a.90.90. 2,500
N.20.a.20.30.  to  N.20.b.10.10. 3,500
Road N & S through  N.25.c. 3,500
Track N.25.a.00.70.  to  N.26.c.00.60. 2,000
Total 34,500 Rounds fired.
Honours and Awards. The following other ranks have been awarded the Military Medal. (Authority: London Gazette. 30573 dated 12-3-18.)
Enemy very quiet with Artillery, but M.G. Fire at night is fairly heavy and steadily increasing in volume. BAPAUME-ARRAS ROAD receives a great amount of M.G. Fire. Ground in front of SNAKE, SERPENT, and GARDEN vigorously shelled, also Battery Headquarters in EDEN GROUP. The shells were Gas, dropped in salvos of 6 at half hour intervals. Work on wiring and timbering of dugouts continued.
26 Harassing Fire carried out as follows during the hours of darkness:-
S.6.d.80.10.  to  S.12.b.80.25. 4,000
T.7.b.20.50. 2,000
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 4,000
N.20.b.40.70.  to  N.15.c.75.00. 4,000
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 4,000
N.26.c.00.00 4,000
Total Rounds - - 22,000
It was necessary to stop firing for a long time as patrols were out during the greater part of the night.
   10.30 pm Quantity of Gas shells on M.23. Square.
Work done during the 24 hours. :-
Bunks fitted to gun crews' dugouts. Stairway dug out and timbered for one gun. Sign boards placed at all positions. Latrines constructed. Wiring done on APPLE and TREE Guns. APPLE and TREE Guns camouflaged with sods. Trenches deepened and drained.
27 Harassing Fire program carried out as follows:-
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.45.70. 4,000
N.20.b.45.70.  to  N.15.c.75.00. 4,000
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 4,000
N.26.c.00.00. 4,000
S.12.b.56.60.  to  S.12.b.40.20. 5,000
T.1.c.50.80.  to  T.1.c.75.25. 7,250
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.a.60.58. 4,000
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.70.30. 4,000
Total 36,250 Rounds.
   6 am Enemy M.G. Fire is increasing every night. Our M.G. Fire increased accordingly. O'S.C. Companies complain of movement in vicinity of Guns in daylight, causing much shelling.
   9 am Enemy dropped a few shells around BENSON without doing any damage
   10 am Wire received from Division that 16 L.D. and 16 H.D. Horses and 12 vehicles were to arrive at QUESNES LE COMPTE this day. Party of 20 drivers and Quartermasters were despatched to draw them.
Company Headquarters of Left Company was moved from M.16.a.40.68 to Brigade Headquarters at M.8.c.70.00. This was done to see if better liaison could be established with Infantry Battalions.
Work done during the 24 hours:-
Dugout construction proceeded with, and new dugouts commenced at GLOBE and MAIL.
28 Harassing Fire program carried out throughout the hours of darkness:-
T.1.c.50.80.  to  T.1.c.75.25. 7,250
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.d.60.58. 4,000
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.70.30. 4,000
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 2,500
N.20.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 2,500
N.26.c.00.00. 2,000
S.12.b.56.60.  to  S.12.b.40.20. 7,000
Total 31,250 Rounds Fired.
   3 pm Enemy made a stealth raid in left Brigade and entered our trenches S.W. of NEUVILLE VITASSE, capturing some three wounded infantrymen. Guns did not obtain any direct targets but fired 8,000 rounds on S.O.S. Lines. [Appendix 24]
   5.30 pm Hostile planes flew very low over BRETENCOURT, WAILLEY, and BELLACOURT. All M.G's and rifles were firing but did not bring them down. 3350 rounds fired at low flying enemy Aircraft during the day.
29 Harassing fire program carried out throughout the hours of darkness as follows:-
S.6.a.20.85  to  S.6.b.98.25. 8,000
T.1.c.50.80.  to  T.1.c.75.25. 8,000
S.6.d.80.10.  to  S.12.b.80.25. 8,000
S.12.b.56.60.  to  S.12.b.40.20. 2,000
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.30.70. 6,700
S.6.a.25.50. 7,300
M.36.d.90.05.  to  M.31.b.30.87. 6,500
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.d.60.58. 5,000
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 3,000
N.20.b.45.70.  to  N.15.c.75.00. 2,000
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 2,000
N.26.c.00.00. 2,000
Total 60,500 Rounds fired.
Word was received that enemy were relieving in right sector, so amount of indirect fire was trebled. Left Brigade raided enemy trenches in NEUVILLE VITASSE. 16 Machine Guns cooperated with indirect fire, and carried out firing on following points. (Instructions for M.G. Barrage).
   Cross Roads at N.19.b.80.85.
   Cross Roads at N.20.a.10.65.
   Sugar Factory N.19.c.20.20.
   Road N.19.c.30.05  to  N.25.b.40.80.
Time of firing was 20 minutes rapid: from Zero plus 20 to Zero plus 30 1 belt per Gun. The Raid was successful and we captured 10 Germans and four machine guns.
Weather wet and dull. Trenches all caved in, necessitating much digging to keep belts, etc., unburied.
   11.30 pm Inter Battery relief of No. 3 Company complete. Very dark night for relief, and one or two men got detached from parties, and temporarily lost, but all turned up eventually.
30 Harassing Fire Program carried out through the hours of darkness as follows:-
T.1.c.45.98.  to  T.1.c.80.20. 3,500
S.6.a.20.85.  to  S.6.b.98.25. 2,000
S.6.d.80.10.  to  S.12.b.80.25. 6,000
S.12.b.56.60.  to  S.12.b.40.20. 1,500
M.36.b.40.85.  to  M.36.b.70.30. 1,500
S.6.a.25.50. 1,500
M.36.d.90.05.  to  M.31.b.30.87. 1,500
N.31.a.15.25.  to  N.31.b.30.87. 1,500
N.20.a.10.60.  to  N.20.b.40.70. 1,500
N.20.b.45.70.  to  N.15.c.75.00. 1,500
N.25.b.35.90.  to  N.25.b.85.15. 1,500
Total 23,500 Rounds fired.
Harassing Fire was interrupted considerably by relieving infantry walking along overland tracks in front of Guns. Wet and misty day made Artillery activity small. Work was done on all positions needing improvement and party from R.E's. assisted M.G's. to build dugouts etc.
The 6th Canadian Infantry Brigade are contemplating making a raid, and O's.C. Companies visited them to arrange for M.G. Support.
G.N. Douglas. Capt
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