9th Canadian Artillery Brigade Operation Order 63 15 April 1917

9th Canadian Artillery Brigade Operation Order 63 15 April 1917


SECRET                                                                                 COPY NO.

REF: Map VIMY 1/10,000

ROUVROY 1/10,000



Operation Order No 63


Lieut. Col. H.G. Carscallen Comdg



INFORMATION       1.  The enemy is holding the OPPY-MERICOURT-VENDIN line and ARLEUX LOOP.

The 3rd Canadian Division with the 9th C.I.B. in the line and the 7th and 8th C.I.B. in reserve are consolidating a line running from T.15.b.3.8. – T.8. central – T.1.b.0.0.

The 9th Canadian Infantry Brigade are at present disposed as follows:-.

1 Battalion in above line.

1 Battalion on line VIMY Station (Exclusive).

T.13.d.central – S.18.central (LA CHAUDIERE)

1 Battalion on VIMY RIDGE.

1 Battalion in old British front line.


The 3rd Canadian Divisional boundaries areas under:-


T.30.Central, VIMY Station (exclusive)

T.15 central –T.4.d.central – MERICOURT (exclusive)



BOIS DE CHAMP POURRI – T.18 central thence along LENS-ARRAS Road (inclusive) to S.12.d.6.4. thence along track (inclusive) running through T.1.b.0.0. to AVION inclusive.


ARTILLERY             2. The 63rd D.A. been withdrawn from the 3rd Canadian Division.

The 93rd and 242nd Army F.A. Brigades have been attached and will now come under the orders of 3rd C.D.A.




  1. Batteries of CARSCALLEN’S GROUP will move forward as soon as possible to positions in the vicinity of VIMY Station – LE CHAUDIERE to support further advance of the Infantry.

The 45th Battery will move forward tonight, 15/16th inst.



  1. RIGHT: T.19.central – T.14.central – N.34.d.0.0.

LEFT: S.24.d.7.9. – T.8.central – T.3.b.4.0.


This zone is divided as follows:-

Right Third to 32nd Battery

Centre third to 33rd Battery

Left Third to 45th Battery

The 36th Battery will cover the whole zone.


LIAISON                   5. The 36th Battery will detail a Liaison Officer to report tonight to Headquarters 58th Battalion at Railway Embankment S.18.d.8.3.


AMMUNITION         6. Dumps of about 250 rounds per gun should be accumulated and maintained at the new position.


REGISTRATION      7. Will be completed as quickly as possible.


REPORTS                  8. To Headquarters on completion of the move and registration.


H.G. Carscallen

Lieut. Col

Letter of recommendation 12 April 1917

Letter of recommendation 12 April 1917



4th C.M.R. Battalion.



Dear Colonel Carscallen,


I have great pleasure in calling to your attention the gallant work done by Lieut. Heney of your Group, in carrying forward a line to the Crest of the Hill.  This Officer established an O.P. on the Crest of the Hill, shortly after we reached our objective, and was in touch with the Liaison Officer, Lieut. Webster at my Battalion Headquarters.

I was able to speak to Lieut. Heney myself, and obtained from him confirmation that we were established on the Crest, also much valuable information as to the movement of the enemy.


I also want to thank you for the courtesy and valuable work done by Lieut Webster as Liaison Officer.  He was most untiring in his efforts to assist us.


Lieut. Haskell, Lieut. Weldon, who were up in front and Lieut. Jamieson who volunteered to stay with me as Liaison Officer on the night of 9/10th Lieut. Manning who helped to arrange shoot, morning of 11th: Lieut. Anderson who directed the 4.5s during the shoot; all did their work in a praiseworthy manner.


I also want to thank you for the good work done by the batteries under your command, all through the action and subsequently when we asked for retaliation, and especially for the great assistance you rendered on the morning of the 11th, when you drove the enemy out of the new trench on slope of Hill, so saving us the necessity of sending men over the top, which would undoubtedly have resulted in severe casualties.


My officers join with me in thanking you.  The work of the artillery throughout, leaving nothing to be desired.


Sgd/ W. Gordon, Lieut. Col.

O.C. 4th C.M.R. Battalion.

9th Canadian Artillery Brigade Operation Order 62 12 April 1917.

9th Canadian Artillery Brigade Operation Order 62 12 April 1917.


SECRET                                                                                 COPY NO.

Ref Map VIMY 1:10,000




Operation Order No 62


Lieut. Col. H.G. Carscallen Comdg



INFORMATION       1.  The enemy are holding the line FLIT and FLICKER FLOWER-PETIT VIMY thence along FILLIP, and eastern sides of BOIS DE LA FOLIE.

The Left flank post of the 2nd Canadian Division on our right is at S.30.b.6.0.

The right of the 3rd Canadian Division is at S.30 central.


In accordance with orders from the 3rd Canadian Division the 9th Canadian Infantry Brigade will attack and consolidate the line FLICKER, FLUNG, FLOWER, PETIT VIMY, FILLIP and trenches along Eastern side of BOIS DE LA FOLIE in S.23.d.c. and a.


BARRAGES.             2.  CASCALLEN’S GROUP will assist in accordance with Barrage Table attached.

During the night 12th/13th April, each 18-pdr. Battery taking part in the rolling barrage, will fire one round every 30 minutes on its first barrage line in order to give the Infantry who will be creeping forward before zero towards their objective, an idea as to the line of the opening barrage.


ZERO.                        3.  Zero hour, which will probably be about dawn on the 13th instant, will be notified later.

Watches will be synchronised with this Headquarters at midnight 12th/13th April.


REPORTS                  4.  Reports will be made to Group Headquarters.

H.G. Carscallen

Lieut. Col


Issued at         p.m.


Copy No 2 to O.C. 32nd Battery

3 to O.C. 33rd Battery

4 to O.C. 45th Battery

5 to O.C. 36th Battery

6 to O.C. 43rd Battery

6,7,8   WAR DIARY

Alf Smith letter 11 April 1917

Alf Smith letter 11 April 1917

No 27521

Pte. A.A. Smith

10th Essex Regt.

‘C’ Company

No 10 Platoon

B.E.F. France

April 11th 17


Dear Father

Just a few lines to thank you for parcel, also for letter from Jess, they are all very nice just a treat.

I was extra pleased to receive it, as it was the first news I had for nearly a month.  Did you get many letters from me I wrote several.

How did you enjoy your Easter I suppose you spent it quietly.  I was surprised to hear Ethel had left school, time passes so quickly I will write to her & Winnie the first opportunity.

A FEW CIGARETTES & Harrisons Pomade would be useful when you are sending another parcel but I am not in a hurry though I would mention it now.

Have you heard from Albert Taylor lately I would like to write to him if you know his address.

Glad to say I am quite well the weather is very cold & wet.

I have not heard from Southend for sometime have you had any news lately?

Well I think I must finish now.

Glad you are all in the best of health.

Au revoir

With much love

From your devoted Son

Reports on Vimy Attack 10 April 1917.

Reports on Vimy Attack 10 April 1917.




April 10th 1917


REPORT ON BOMBARDMENT OF TRENCH FROM S.29.b.4.8 TO S.23.d.7.2 from 6.15 to 6.45 a.m. April 10th


Bombardment was arranged for at the request of O.C 4th C.M.R. his scouts having encountered a party of about 45 of the enemy partly dug in in this area.

The bombardment had the desired effect, as a patrol was sent out over the ground half an hour later and found no trace of the enemy. The O.C. 4th C.M.R. was very pleased with the shoot.

Attached is report by Battalion Scout Officer.


(Sgd) A.L. Anderson Lieut.

36th Battery C.F.A.








Patrol pushed forward, at first crawling and then walking. Patrol went two thirds of way through wood and reported wood to be full of the enemy.

Patrol was not shot at from VIMY.

Artillery fire was very good. Shell holes were found all around the position.





3rd Canadian Division


This is very satisfactory


(sgd) L.J. Lipsett, Maj-Gen.

3rd Canadian Division.


Intelligence Report 10 April 1917.

Intelligence Report 10 April 1917.





5.30 a.m.         The Barrage opened up simultaneously all along the whole line and was the most perfect I have ever seen.  It was quite light and the visibility was good.  The Infantry encountered slight opposition from the German front line and craters and moved along steadily with our barrage, till they came to the BLACK LINE.  From here to the final objective there was very little opposition as the enemy defences had been absolutely blown out of existence.

The Infantry (all ranks) were immensely pleased with the Artillery Support.

6.45 a.m.         At this hour I left the Tunnel Head with the Battalion Signalling officer, having clearly ascertained that the enemy retaliation was very light and on our front consisted only of two 5.9 guns, one battery’ four guns 4.1s and one battery of whizz bangs.  From here I went on by stages to the front line, keeping in touch with our Brigade Hdqrs all the time by telephone and never being out of touch with the Company and Battalion Commanders all day.

From 10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. much movement of Infantry in small parties were observed coming down BOBBY and BODKIN Trenches to BLOATER TRENCH and also some movement in FLOWER Trench. The enemy were immediately engaged by our 18-pounders and the movement stopped.

From 2 to 3 p.m. four parties of Germans (about ten in each party) were observed going overland to the rear from LA CHAUDIERE through S.13.a. and c.

About 3.30 p.m. two gun limbers with four horses each came along about S.24.c.5.6. They were immediately engaged by machine gunners and at once disappeared from view about S.24.b.5.8.

From 3.30 to 5 p.m. over 1000 of the enemy were observed coming overland towards PETIT VIMY from the SUNKEN ROAD in S.15.c. They were spread out in parties of about twenty to thirty men, moving quickly to the Railway line in S.19.b. where they disappeared.  None of these parties went further north than the tramline at S.24.c.1.8. to 4.8.  They were engaged by our 18-pounders which eventually stopped all movement through square S.24.d.

The Howitzer Batteries engaged the enemy in squares 14 and 15 but nearly all their shots fell in squares 20 and 21 and were ineffective.

From 5 p.m. (9th) to 9 a.m. (10th) the night was quiet the enemy throwing up flares all over the back area and showing signs of nervousness.

From aa a.m. to 7. p.m. 9th the enemy fired about 500 rounds of 5.9s into LA FOLIE WOOD close to LA FOLLIE FARM and on the SWISCHEN STELLUNG TRENCH.




Alf Smith’s Field Service Postcard 9 April 1917.

Alf Smith’s Field Service Postcard 9 April 1917.




To J. Smith, 24, Palmerston Rd. Bowes Park London N 22 England. Postmarked Field Post Office 68.  12 AP 17.


I am quite well

I have received your letter and parcel dated April 5th.

Letter follows at first opportunity

Signature only. A. Smith

Date April 9th 17

Report on capture of Vimy Ridge 9 April 1917.

Report on capture of Vimy Ridge 9 April 1917.


APRIL 9TH 1917



Promptly at 5.30 a.m. this morning the barrage opened and from here it appeared well synchronised all along the line. Practically coincident with the first rounds fired flares of all sorts were sent up from the German lines.  Within ten minutes the German barrage was well under way but it was not very effective owing to high bursts.  Our barrage was reported as being very good, a large percentage of the rounds being just off graze.  The smoke barrage put up by the R.Es was also reported to be most effective.  At 5.37 a.m. report was received that we had crossed enemy’s front line.  Within 23 minutes from Zero Hour our Infantry were reported as having crossed the support line and that the enemy barrage was light.  At this period our Communication Trenches were subjected to a searching fire from enemy 5.9s.  After our crossing of the support line enemy commenced sending up white flares from immediately in rear of SWISCHEN STELLUNG.  At 6.07 a.m. a small party of prisoners were reported as being brought in.  Seven minutes later we occupied SWISCHEN STELLUNG.  Enemy barrage now heavier on ARTILLERIE WEG and FLAPPER TRENCH.  At 6.45 a.m. infantry reported as having left SWISCHEN STELLUNG and started advance to next objective.  Reports from Infantry were that our barrage was very satisfactory.  At 7.10 a.m. a large number of prisoners had been brought in.  Tanks were reported as advancing on our right.  At 7.35 a.m. our Brigade F.O.O. Lieut. J.R. Jamieson established a Group telephone communication as far forward as VIMY RIDGE.  About the same time Lieut. F.B.L. Heney, F.O.O. also established communication from the RIDGE.  At 7.40 a.m. report received was that the Infantry were consolidating RED LINE.  By 9.30 a.m. situation was quiet on our zone.  Infantry still busily engaged in consolidation and as covered them by occasional bursts of fire.


In addition to barrages the enemy also resorted to Gas Shells. Points in front of LA FOLIE WOOD and also the 43rd Battery (S.25.b.31.02.) was shelled for a short time with Gas Shells.


Throughout the day the enemy was reported as massing at various places particularly in VIMY and vicinity of PETIT VIMY, also large numbers of Infantry were reported at various times throughout the day as being seen in back areas.


At 4.30 p.m. German machine gunners and snipers were reported active in FLOWER and FILLIP Trenches.  These trenches were fired upon by the 36th Howitzer Battery.  Through our Left Battalion Liaison Officer and different F.O.Os number of hostile batteries were reported and they were immediately taken on by Counter Battery Group.




5.30 a.m.         Barrage commenced.

5.33 a.m.         Left Battalion Liaison Officer, Lieut. Webster, reports everything going as per programme.

5.37 a.m.         Left Battalion reported as crossing enemy F.L.

5.41 a.m.        Effect of enemy barrage lessened by extremely high bursts.

Our barrage reported as very good.

5.53 a.m.         Our Infantry have crossed support line, enemy barrage light but is searching C.Ts with 5.9s.

6.00 a.m.         Infantry reported as leaving second line and advancing to next objective.  Enemy sending up white flares from immediately in rear of SWISCHEN STELLUNG.

6.17 a.m.         Small party of prisoners coming in.

6.14 a.m.         Our Infantry have now reached SWISCHEN STELLUNG.  Enemy barraging heavily ARTILLERIE WEG and FLAPPER TRENCH.

6.42 a.m.         We occupy SWISCHEN STELLUNG.  Party of 100 prisoners reported coming in.

6.45 a.m.         Infantry leaving SWISCHEN STELLUNG.

6.47 a.m.         Reports state that Infantry advance is even all along the line.  Our barrage is reported to be very successful.

6.55 a.m.         One of our Infantry outposts reported on the outskirts of BOIS DE BONVAL.

7.04 a.m.         Our Infantry have disappeared over LA FOLLIE CREST.  Enemy still barraging his old front line.

7.10 a.m.        Large number of prisoners coming in.

7.13 a.m.         Tanks can be seen advancing on right.

7.27 a.m.         Enemy putting gas shells on western outskirts of LA FOLIE WOOD.

7.37 a.m.         Lieut. J.R. Jamieson Brigade F.O.O. and Lieut J.B. L. Heney 32 Btty telephones us from VIMY RIDGE.

7.40 a.m.         Infantry consolidating along RED LINE.

8.30 a.m.         Situation quiet on our zone.  Infantry consolidating and we are covering their work by intermittent bursts of fire.

10.15 a.m.      Enemy reported to be massing in S.24.d.

10.20 a.m.       43rd Battery position being shelled with gas shells.

10.40 a.m.       Enemy reported in large numbers on road in S.19.a.3.5.  From road they are going into BOBBY Trench and then proceeding to a point on the outskirts of PETIT VIMY where they are reported as massing.

10.50 a.m.       Enemy reported as massing in S.23. central.

11.15 a.m.       Enemy is reaching massing point in PETIT VIMY  by way of BOBBY, BODKIN and BIMBLE Trenches.

11.15 a.m. to 3.50 p.m.

Our Infantry busily engaged in consolidation and trench work and enemy reported massing at many places. These points were all kept under fire.  Number of enemy batteries reported through Infantry F.O.Os were taken on by the Counter Battery Group.

3.50 p.m.         German machine gunners and snipers reported active in FLOWER and FILLIP Trenches.  These points were kept under fire by our 36th Bty.

4.00 p.m.         Enemy reported to be massing behind VIMY.

4.20                 500 German Infantry reported as observed going into PETIT VIMY from direction of Railway Line.

5.30 p.m.         Situation practically normal both sides apparently settling down to improving trenches and fortifications.


  1. King


Adjt. 9th Brigade C.F.A.


9th Canadian Artillery Bde Addendum to Operational Order 59. 8 Apr 1917

9th Canadian Artillery Bde Addendum to Operational Order 59.


SECRET                                                                                 COPY NO.



Addenda No 1


Operation Order No 59



SIGNALS       1. (a)  The S.O.S. Signal will be RED, either rockets or Very Lights.  As many as possible fired in quick succession.


(b) When objectives are reached the Divisional distinguishing flags will be waved NOT stuck in the ground.

Flags will be carried as below:-

3rd Canadian Division,   Black and Red.

2nd Canadian Division,  YELLOW flag with Black Maple Leave, Reverse Khaki.

4th Canadian Division, RED.


The 2nd Canadian Division are also using a signal of three WHITE Very Lights to denote that their objectives are reached.  The 3rd Canadian Division will not use light signals to denote their position.


  1. After reaching the final objective of the Division the 7th and 8th Canadian Infantry Brigades will arrange to push patrols forwards towards BOIS DE CHAMP POURRI (S.23.b.), PETIT VIMY and VIMY in order to ascertain whether the defences of these localities are occupied. The protective barrages will be lifted by order of Headquarters 3rd C.D.A. to enable this to be done.


H.G. Carscallen

Lieut. Col


Issued at       a.m.


TO: All Batteries