Private Diary of J.K. Dick Cunyngham Br Gen July 1918

Private Diary of J.K. Dick Cunyngham Br Gen

PoW

BLANKENBURG 1/11 MARK bei BERLIN

Germany

July 1918

 

Monday July 1st.  At last a real fine warm day.  Tennis started 8 a.m. – 2 letters one from DD one from Charlie.  2 parcels, 1 Red Cross, containing very little, & a clothing parcel, the other shoe turned up all right, am gradually getting together some kit.  Played golf in the morning, Sipi & I beat Hatfield & Evans 3 & 2.  Played tennis at 2.30 p.m. for an hour & didn’t get as blown as I thought I should, in shoes from Canteen with linoleum soles (11/50 M) were rather uncomfy.  Hatfield has lent me a pair of grey flannels with a red stripe down them, it is a treat to get out of breeches & boots.  Felt like a schoolboy after tennis going to Canteen for Ersatz Beer & a bag of cherries!  Had cold shower bath before tea – washing came back from Berlin, looking very nice but evidently more cleaning process than washing with soap.

 

Tuesday July 2nd.  Promised to be a fine day but it was raining before 1 p.m.  Managed to get a 2 mile walk in the park before lunch, & we tried to play golf after lunch but were driven in by rain which continued on & off all day.  Handicaps for tennis tournament are out (singles) I am ‘scratch’ lowest -30 highest +30.  There are 24 entries & we have got a “Pari Mutual” started on it.

 

Wednesday July 3rd.  Cloudy day.  Worked at French & played golf.  Sipi & self v Hatfield & Pughe Evans, they beat us on the last green.  Very hot & thundery weather in afternoon, sat out in garden, French officers went for a walk, those who went with them came back very hot, am glad I didn’t go – more rain after dinner.  No tennis again today, courts too wet.

 

Thursday July 4th.  Hot bath 7.50 a.m.  Fine morning & cooler breeze.  Tennis Tournament started at 12.30 p.m. & went on incessantly until 7.30 p.m.  3 letters today, one from Gina, Col Neish & Hercules Tailyour whom I haven’t heard of for years.  He was taken prisoner in Aug /14 & is now at Scheveningen Holland.  Sat in Garden during the morning, & had a game of golf with Farmer after tea, beat him on the 19th green, after being dormy 4.  Quite a breeze today but still thundery & oppressive.

 

Friday July 5th.  Cold dull day.  3 parcels from Fortnum & Mason, A & N, & Walter Barnard.  At last got a respectable cap with Badges.  Excellent selection food, but marmalade & Eschoffier Sauce in F & M’s parcel broken.  A & N parcel dated 25 May F & M’s evidently 3 May.  Fear my bread parcels dating back from 7 June will be bad.  Evans’ bread from Copenhagen dated 22 June was quite good, no mould but dry.  Played 2 sets tennis with Farmer & beat him 6.2 &6.1. As a little practice before Tournament in afternoon.  Played George in Tournament 2.30 p.m. & beat him 6.4 both sets.  Rather a pat ball kind of game.  I had to give him 15 one game & 30 the next.  Cold shower bath after very refreshing.  Sipiagni in bed with touch of flue & very sorry for himself.

 

Saturday July 6th.  Another parcel food one from Lazenby, all excellent things & arrived well packed.  Bad night.  I could not get to sleep till 2.45 a.m., result was not at all inclined to take my hot bath at 8 a.m.  Tennis tournament continued I played Williams at 12 p.m. & finished the 3 sets at 1.20 p.m.  Had to give him ½ 30 & managed to win after a very close game – 6-4 – 2-6 – 8-6 were the games – Was very stiff after the games in spite of hot bath after it.

Cold drizzling rain at times, played Farmer golf after tea, & beat him on the 18th green – Sipiagni better this evening & taking nourishment.

 

Sunday July 7th.  Fine but windy.  Wrote to DD in the morning.  Played Norton in Tournament after lunch – he gave me ½ 15 & beat me – 7/5, 2/6 & 6/8.  A very even game which lasted 2 hours – Youth & better training told in the end.  Both feet blistered from the Canteen shoes with linoleum soles & am very stiff.  Sat in garden in sun but sheltered from the wind after tea.  2 British (Norton & Hatfield) & 2 Frenchmen left in for Semi-finals.  My roses are now in full bloom in the window & look very well, but they soon lose their beautiful Salmon colour after coming fully out & turn into a rather common pale pink.

 

Monday July 8th.  Fine day.  Hatfield & Avensgas left in for final of tennis.  An attempt to arrange another tea in Library after finals has I am glad to say failed.  The golf course has been improved, greens & bunkers weeded – played Farmer who beat me 2 up & 1 to play.

My left heel is bruised after the tennis & I shall have to give my feet a rest for a day or two. Sat in garden after tea, nice & warm in the sun.  Sipiagni was up for tea & dinner & appears to be better.

 

Tuesday July 9th.  Hot bath 8 a.m.  Very hot day, sat out in garden in the morning.  Played golf with Hatfield before lunch.  Final tennis tournament 2.30 p.m.  Avensgas won 2 sets to one.  Played another round of golf after tea with Farmer who beat me 2 & 1.  Thunderstorm & rain at 6 p.m. just as we had finished.

 

Wednesday July 10th.  Letter & postcard from DD.  Parcel from Red Cross – food.  Shall only get 61 days pay as Br. Gen. & then revert to Regt Rk.  Must plan out accordingly – Had meeting of Room representatives & Secretaries various funds after Roll Call.  Every fund appears to be separate, with no estimate of expenses etc.  Hope to be able to get a general levy to include all games, library, gas etc & prevent as at present about 6 people collecting money at end of each month.

Very hot morning but slight rain in the afternoon. Played foursome golf after tea.  Self & Farmer beat Hatfield & Sipiagni 7 & 6.  Had some German Burgundy for dinner at 9.50 mks per bottle.  Special brand kept by Lt. Burgkman who says there isn’t a great stock of it.

 

Thursday July 11th.  Played tennis 9.45 – 10.30 a.m.  2 parcels arrived one Red Cross, one Copenhagen biscuits for week ending June 15th.  2 letters, one from DD, one from Betty, all well.

Slight touch of lumbago after tennis, shall have to go easy. Very hot day.  Sat out in garden morning & afternoon.  Played golf after tea.

 

Friday July 12th.  Very hot day, sat out all morning & afternoon.  Played golf with Farmer after tea & beat him 4 & 2.  Have planned 3 more holes & must get sanction from Comdt to make them.  This will give a 9 hole course & I think will improve it especially when grass is cut & course generally smartened up.  Walked in Park after dinner with Sipi.

 

Saturday July 13th.  Played tennis with Pughe Evans 9.45 – 10.30., beat him one set 7-5.  Cool breeze today, more clouds about.  Listened to new German Feldwebel playing piano in the Library – he is a perfect artist at it & has given concerts since 1889.  Has played at Crystal Palace.

Played 4 sets tennis. Hatfield & self v Norton & Evans. 4/40 p.m. to 6/40 p.m. Bath just before dinner.

 

Sunday July 14th.  Rained hard from 5 to 8.30 a.m.  No tennis today Feldwebel playing again before lunch.  Wrote DD short letter one postcard after lunch – Concert (piano) after supper quite a large audience 8.40 to 9.30 p.m.

 

Monday July 15th.  Very hot day.  Arranged to play tennis at 4.30 p.m. but heavy rain shower stopped tennis for day at 2.30 p.m.  Marked out new 3 holes on golf course with Vick & Farmer & put up a bunker guarding No 1 green.  With a load of sand & rolling course ought to improve.

 

Tuesday July 16th.  Hot bath 8 a.m.  One letter from DD dated May 15.  Two Red Cross Food parcels dated May 15 & 22, both good ones.  Still hot & some rain during the night – tennis started 12.30 p.m. I played 3.30 to 4.30 with Hatfield against Hibbard & Vick & beat them 2 sets.  Had shower bath after tea.  Very close & thundery all evening.  The Feldwebel gave us another piano recital after dinner.

 

Wednesday July 17th.  Letter from DD dated 28 May.  Still very hot, a thick fog at 5 a.m.  Played tennis with Hibbard at 10.30 to 11.30 – and again at 4.30 – 5.30 with Count D’Aymery.  My shoes have given way, they have only lasted 3 weeks, shoes continue to be a difficulty until some arrive from home.  If my black brogue shoes turn up I can turn the brown canvas ones into tennis shoes by taking off the heels.

 

Thursday July 18th.  Thunderstorm hanging about from 2.30 a.m. broke over village about 8.30 a.m.  Quite sufficiently close to be unpleasant.  2 letters, 1 from Betty, 1 from Aunt Alice.  Biscuits parcel from Copenhagen dated June 7th.  Very hot all day.  Looked to official correspondence from Van der Zyde – 2 boxes of H & P biscuits have arrived & have been put with Common box.  The 60 emergency parcels will also form a reserve when they arrive & are to be kept for a new captured officers, or men transferred who have delayed in getting their parcels.  Very hot all day.

 

Friday July 19th.  Bad night, did not get to sleep till after 2 p.m. Mosquitoes very troublesome.  Letter from Oldfield, parcel clothing, mackintosh cigars etc.  Played tennis 2.30 – 3.30 p.m. with Hatfield against Pughe Evans & Norton.  1 set all.  Golf 3 ball match.  Hatfield, Farmer & self 5.15 to 6.40 p.m.  Feldwebel played again at 8 p.m.

 

Saturday July 20th.  2 letters from DD dated 27 May & 18 June & 1 from Gina dated 26 May.  Played Hibbard singles 10.30 – 11.30 a.m. & beat him   6-2 – 6-3 and again at 4.30 p.m. & beat him 9.7.

The Feldwebel & Count Kirkoff on “cello” gave recital at 6.30 p.m. Some French orderlies went to Frankfurt on Oder prior to going back to France.  They have been prisoners since 1914.Cunningham has rigged up a stick with sponge steeped in Toothache Mixture (Camphor) over my bed as a preventative for mosquitoes!

Still very hot, luckily the baths are going all day. Had a hot bath @ 8 a.m. & 2 cold shower baths after tennis today.

 

Sunday July 21.  Letter from Gertie.  Played tennis 10.30 – 11.30 a.m.  Norton & I beat Hatfield & Hibbard.  At 12 noon attended Belgian Room at invitation of Lippens to drink health of Belgian nation on the Independence Day.  Self & Hibbard represented British. D’Amery French.  All Belgian officers in full kit were present.  Russian Generals excused themselves on account of news of Czar’s assassination.

Wrote DD in the afternoon & tried a walk in the Park after tea, but rain drove us in. Difficulty in finding a British Orderly to take on work on tennis court.

 

Monday July 22nd.  Food parcel Red X dated 27 May & Pitman Shorthand Dictionary, French Dictionary, Prayer Bk from DD.  Wet morning.  Worked hard & wrote out suggestions re formation of Sports Club etc.  At present everything is separate.  Heavy rain & hail after lunch.  Got some exercise (1 hour) after tea.  Hatfield sick with Tummy.  Siprani also has tummy ache.  Rumour from Berlin that Russia has declared war on England!

 

Tuesday July 23rd.  Another wet morning.  Letter from Charlie.  Biscuits from Copenhagen dated June 22.  Worked on the new golf greens during the morning.  Went with Robertson to our garden 2.30 – 4.30 p.m.  There is a good stock of vegetables but requires some weeding, shall be quite glad to take it on when he goes away.  A large Gotha aeroplane passed low over here about 5 p.m. just as we were going out to play golf, a foursome, Sipia & Hatfield against self & Farmer, we gave them a half but couldn’t manage it.  Had trial shots at the new holes, think they will be quite good.  The small load of sand has cost 25 Marks!!  Not worth getting any more at this price.  Feldwebel played to us after dinner.  Count Kirkoff has sent me some sweet peas, pink ones, from his garden.  Cunningham went to Berlin today & says it looks very empty.  About 16 French & British officers went to Football field & found goal posts gone!

 

Wednesday July 24th.  Another wet morning.  Warned at Roll Call there is to be an Inspection at 3 p.m. tomorrow, Chief of Staff of Corps, & P of W Inspection Staff.  Wet morning.  Worked on golf course after tea, rolling greens & approaches.  Kirkoff and Feldwebel played in the Library during the afternoon.

 

 

Thursday July 25th.  Great excitement in Camp about 8 a.m.  15 French officers & Phillips (Mercantile Marine) escaped during night.  Phillips d’Ayenery & 5 others were caught & back here by 9 a.m.  Result we were locked into the courtyard until after Inspection at 3 p.m.

C of S III Army Corps & Inspector P of W Camps inspected Camp at 3 p.m. They shook hands with me & asked if I was comfortable, saying that this was the best Camp.  C of S speaks English well.  He addressed officers after I had left parade & said it was a pity to try & escape from here as it was so comfortable!

Played golf, 3 ball match, self Farmer & Hatfield after Inspection, & won 14 points to H’s 10 ½ , F 8. Still some showers & no tennis.  Red X parcel dated June 8 arrived today.

 

Friday July 26th.  Tennis started at 8 a.m. D’Ayemery, Phillips & Co plus Castier left camp about 10.15 a.m.  We had a chance of saying goodbye to them, don’t suppose they will come back here again.  Played tennis at 11.30, and again at 4.30 p.m.  A game of golf with H at 6 p.m.  Vick & Farmer looking on the new greens & have put down some sand.  2 of them are still too sloping & must be altered.  Hibbert & Bitz dined, so we had some Hock cup.

 

Saturday July 27th.  Heavy rain again during night & tennis courts not fit to play on.  At luncheon Sipiagni was warned to be ready to leave at 5 p.m.  He was furious & went straight to bed but finally after Traube had seen him decided to go to Kirtrin where they say Russian Officers are being collected.  We all walked him to the Station, very sorry to lose him, but he will probably get back to Russia soon where & under what circumstances remains to be seen.  Cashavaio, his faithful servant remains with us, as cook & orderly.  Played golf after dinner.  A Russian General Johnson left this morning as well.  Many rumours in Camp from doing away with Camp altogether to 20 new English Officers arriving – also Camp to become a Senior Officers’ Camp & all young officers to go elsewhere.

German Engineers digging for the tunnel in garden this afternoon, all very amused. I saw the room where it was commenced.  A very neat piece of work, all the spoil from the tunnel packed carefully away & boarded up with bed boards.

Rumours that most of the others have been caught.

 

Sunday July 28th.  Wrote letter & postcard to DD.  Fine morning but more heavy rain & thunder at 2 p.m. just as tennis courts were drying up.  Walked in park with George for an hour after tea.  A new Russian officer has come back here, one Colonel Lillier, he was C of S of Russian Army Corps.  Speaks French.  Awescas has returned & is alone in No 13 Room.

 

Monday July 29th.  Two letters from DD dated June 20 & 28.  2 parcels, one from Morels, badly damaged, & arrived in a sack.  One clothing containing cigars, badges of rank, powders, shoes & sock.  Sewed on my new tabs & badges and am at last dressed correctly.  Walk at 2 p.m. went along Berlin Rd, through Pankow & back by the Berlin City allotments, some of them are quite good flower, fruit & vegetable gardens with tiny houses.  Got back at 3.40 p.m.  I walked with Lippens.

Played golf after tea. Cool cloudy day but no rain.

 

Tuesday July 30th.  Two letters from DD dated 12 & 14 June & one from Mrs. B.F.  Cold dull day.  Worked at my French Grammar in morning.  Comdt Mozin Senior Belgian Officer came to see me about my proposals for forming one sports club, they agree but think Library & gas fund must be kept separate. Castier who came back & 1 other French officer left for another camp ‘en route’ for Switzerland.  About 18 of us went to football field at 2 p.m. & had a small game of soccer.  About 40 German children flocked to the field on our arrival, & were given some chocolate to scramble for, this appears to be a very popular game for them.

 

Wednesday July 31st.  Woke up about 6 a.m. feeling very sick but recovered after Mullin’s exercises & cold bath!  Found Sipi back again at breakfast, having travelled all night.  Still cold & dull, sat out & worked at French, & had usual 3 ball golf match before lunch.  At 2 p.m. went for long walk through outskirts of Pankow, suburb of Berlin, inhabitants seem quite friendly; do not admire German Architecture.  Got back 4.20 p.m. to find new Australian officer Ranson in Camp (No 3 Room) in Phillips’ place.  He & Col Lillier dined with us.  Ranson has been P of W 2 years & expects to go to Holland shortly.

Paris & 3 other French Officers returned & in No 13 Room.

 

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War Diary of AA Laporte Payne July 1918

War Diary of AA Laporte Payne July 1918

 

EXTRACTED FROM.

 

Brigade Diary, Personal Diary, Operation Orders, Note Books, Memoranda

Correspondence

—————–

Sunday July 7 1918.

 

Today I am feeling better than I have done during the past few days. I had a return of my head trouble, but today after a good blow on the sea I am more inclined to sit up and take notice.  I went out in a sailing boat with two other fellows had lunch at Sandbanks and tea at Branksome Chine, followed by a sail round Bournemouth pier, and so home to the Sailing Club pier at Poole.  I was allowed to go on this trip if I did not exert myself at all.

 

I hope to have a medical board this week. They may give me three weeks leave and then G.S. again.

 

There have been several changes at the hospital. The pleasant matron has gone, and the old one is back again.  There are to be lectures for 1 hour and a half each morning.  Everyone is very angry.

 

It was very hot yesterday, and it seemed to make my head worse. I am not allowed to bathe.

 

July 12, 1918.

 

To day I am actually being allowed out to dinner, but I have been warned that if I return the worse for it I shall not be allowed out again. I still spend most of my time sleeping and reading, very unexciting though pleasant.

 

My board I hope is tomorrow. As soon as I get away from this asylum I shall get three weeks leave, and I am looking forward to it very much.

 

July 17, 1918

 

I have no news of a board yet. It is all very uncertain.  So the fresh push in France has started.  I was told about it before anyone else in England.  At 4 a.m. the morning it started!!

 

R.P.                                         The Mount, Parkstone.

July 23 1918

 

Yesterday morning I spent in the Police Station. The enclosed cutting explains.

 

There is no sign of a board yet. It may come this week.  The doctor is, I think, putting it off as he says I am not yet fit.  I had a rather bad Saturday and Sunday, as my ear hurt a bit, but it is much better now, I am glad to say.

Letter to Rev. R.M. Laporte Payne 30 July 1918

Letter to Rev. R.M. Laporte Payne 30 July 1918

 

Martin Dales

Lincoln

July 30/18

 

Dear Mr. Payne,

 

I was very pleased to receive your letter, & to hear that your two sons have been spared to you, in the good Providence of God. My elder boy Reginald is in Italy with the R.A.M.C., he was sent out with a mobile laboratory.  My younger boy Albert is in Mesopotamia & was well & happy when last we heard from him.  Previous to “joining up” Reginald was at Keble College & Albert was just going to begin a medical course at Manchester University.

 

It must be a great strain on you being without a curate. Lucy Jaques sends us your Par Mag so we get to know a little parochial news in this way.

 

We are very happy in our work here. I left the C.A. two years ago feeling to need a settled home & sphere of work.  I am in charge of a district Church on the edge of the Fen.  The Parish Ch is five miles away from here.  We have Matins, Evensong & S. School.  The work is very encouraging in every way.

 

We have a nice little home situated on the bank of the Witham, with a very large garden.

 

I have the Bishop’s Commission for preaching in Church. Twice during the month the Vicar and I exchange churches.

 

I hope Mrs Payne & your two daughters are well.

 

With all good wishes

Yours sincerely

Walter Barton

Alf Smith letter 18 July 1918.

Alf Smith letter 18 July 1918.

 

German censor marked.

152 High Street,

Southend on Sea

Essex

Eng

July 18th 1918

 

Our dear old Boy,

 

The news of your safety is the greatest comfort; we are happy once again; it has been a vary anxious time since April 28th the report “missing since March 21st” came from the Records Office on that date; since then it has been like night to us; we are the first to receive the good news; your letter dated May 7th reached us July 16th & Father has not received your letter to him of which you referred in yours; I telegraphed to him immediately so that he got the good news the same evening; by this you will know why you have not heard from us; dear Boy you also must be anxious for news & to know that we are all well; even now a small delay has to be added to enable us to become acquainted with the rules Official as to writing & as soon as we know the rules of parcels, we will send some goodies, not forgetting the “leather boot laces” with all speed; it is like old times once again Alf old boy.

In conclusion now, I rejoice to tell you we all enjoy good health & progressing at home & here; also that I received a letter from Jess today to tell how happy Father & they all are; they all four are going to Exmouth on holiday July 29th for three weeks, I am glad Father is going with them.

So now adieu, we send fondest embraces & heaps of kisses from Joyce.

Your devoted

Brother & Sister

 

Heaps of love to you dear boy; so very glad you are safe & well

Affie

 

Ansell is as happy as ourselves. He drinks to your good health; & is glad you thought of him.

 

F. Hammond letter 16 July 1918

16.7.18

BEF

Dear F & M

Just a line to let you know I am gogging along all merry and bright.  Glad to hear you had a good day out at Alderley.  The place where we are is just typical of the country round that dear old place.  Just like the Cheshire plain with Alderley Edge standing out prominently.  Only if one cares to walk up the edge here one can see for miles and at night it’s a most lovely spectacle to see the gun flashes and bursting shells as far as the eye can reach.  I see the Boche have started their grand offensive again but up to now as far as we can make out he has made a bad start and I hope before very long the offensive for him will have passed away for ever.  Then we shall soon have the German population up in arms at their dastardly failure.  It was certain very good of the fraternal to present you with so lovely a present let us hope we may all be together before very long and take a slice of Mar’s old cake from the silver dish.  Glad to hear Gladys has had her screw raised more chocolate for her I suppose.  Had a letter from Gladys Green a short time ago but haven’t answered it yet.  She’s looking forward to a trip to Mac before long.  Hope you girls have a good time together.  There is very little else to say at present.  Hope Mar’s cold is better ere this.  Could just do with some of Par’s new potatoes & cabbage suppose you’ll pickle some cab for the boys.  Suppose Jack has appeared again ere this.  He should be very near leave again by now.

Well cheerho old dears

Gussie

NOTES ON RECENT FIGHTING – No. 17. 9 July 1918

Headquarters 178th Infantry Bde. stamp.

Issued down to Divisions

(for distribution down to Battalions)

T/9

NOTES ON RECENT FIGHTING – No. 17.

(Issued by the General Staff)

The attached German document gives a detailed description of the enemy’s tactical procedure and arrangements during the recent operations. Although in previous notes attention has been drawn to the majority of the points on which emphasis is laid in this document, the following should be particularly noted.

  1. Great stress is laid on the fact that it is necessary for the attacking troops to be thoroughly trained in open warfare.
  2. It is pointed out that the most rigorous secrecy is vital, and that the time and place of the attack should not be communicated to the troops until the last moment.
  3. Special injunctions are given as to the thorough reconnaissance of the sector to be attacked.
  4. The minimum objective is definitely laid down as the defender’s artillery positions. The infantry, after passing beyond the limit of the barrage zone, is instructed to push forward rapidly, relying on infantry weapons (including light and heavy machine guns), and supported by light trench mortars and by the field artillery placed at the disposal of the regimental commanders. From the outset of the attack distribution in depth is enjoined.
  5. The need of the personal initiative of subordinate commanders, and the necessity for the exploitation to the utmost of any success, are emphasised.
  6. The aim especially set before the infantry is the overcoming of strong points and centres of resistance by envelopment combined with concentration of machine gun and artillery fire, rather than by direct attack, reserves being only employed at points where initial success has been obtained.
  7. As soon as a hostile counter-attack has been repulsed, an immediate counter-thrust is prescribed. It is laid down as the principal concern of commanders that the general forward movement should be promptly resumed and the defenders pressed as closely as possible.
  8. Reference is made to the difficulties caused by the defender’s centres of resistance in splitting up the attacking troops.In order successfully to meet an attack on the lines laid down, the essentials are constant observation in order to guard against surprise, organization of depth in defence, economical distribution of troops in forward positions, and determined resistance with a view to the retention of tactical localities and strong points between which the enemy may succeed in penetrating, combined with counter-offensive action.9th of July, 1918.Printed in France by Army Printing and Stationary Services.                                                                 PRESS A-7049 & 7018S-7/18.

 

 

 

 

TRANSLATION OF A GERMAN DOCUMENT.

[S.S. 723]                                                                                                                  Ia/51522

 

Issued by German G.H.Q.

at the beginning of 1918.

 

NOTES ON THE BREAK-THROUGH, FOR BRIGADE, REGIMENTAL AND BATTALION COMMANDERS.

 

  • – PREPARATIONS.

 

  1.  
  • The preparations in the position itself are usually made by the division in line (Stellungs-division). The objective will be kept secret. Instructions should be given in good time regarding the nature, extent and state of these preparations. If the preparations are not sufficiently advanced, the attacking troops will, if necessary, lend their assistance.
  • A thorough training of the attacking troops in open warfare and offensive tactics is the most important point. The attacking infantry must be trained to co-operate with machine guns and trench mortars, and with the artillery accompanying it. To keep close up to the creeping barrage and to assault immediately “on top of” the supporting fire of the machine guns are two principles which must become second nature to the infantry. Training should be carried out with blank ammunition. The creeping barrage is, nevertheless, not the principle thing; it assists the infantry in the close combat, but cannot entirely obviate the latter. The infantry should, in principle, advance under the protection of the heavy machine guns ready to place a barrage in front of it. The tactics should be those of assault troops; massed formations should be avoided. Subordinate commanders must be thoroughly trained. The first requisites are discipline and a firm attitude on the part of officers. Superior commanders must know their subordinates thoroughly, in order to be able to employ them judiciously. The moral of the troops and of the subordinate commanders, and their elan and determination must be raised. During training, the men should wear their full equipment. The fighting strength of the infantry should be checked (men on detachment). As rapidity of movement is of the utmost importance, the men’s equipment for the attack should often be reduced.
  • During training, the various means of communication should be employed; all ranks should be trained in their use. Too many men should not be employed on this duty.
  • Rigorous secrecy must be maintained. The time and place of the attack should not be communicated to the troops until the last moment. The notification of zero hour at the last minute should be practiced. All cases of indiscretion should be severely dealt with, even in the case of officers. Any elements which are suspected should be kept in rear and watched without their being aware of it.

 

    1. The men must be constantly instructed to take cover from air and ground observation.
  • The equipment of the men, harness of the horses, the vehicles, and the defensive measures against gas, must be inspected. The troops must not take any unnecessary baggage with them. Men must be trained to load vehicles in accordance with definite instructions, and to calculate weights. The kits of officers and Feldwebel must be inspected. Text books and papers must be reduced to the absolute minimum. The first line transport and travelling kitchens should be provided with good teams, if necessary from the regimental transport.

 

    1. The kit which the men are to carry for the assault should be thought out in detail. Any unnecessary reduction of kit does more harm than good.
  • Supply of rations. Iron rations must be checked. Every man should go into battle well provided with food and drink. Vegetable rations are unnecessary. Full use should be made of all stores and supplies captured from the enemy. These should be carefully guarded. Tobacco should be provided. On days of heavy fighting alcohol should be issued.

 

    1. The supply of water in the forward area will be difficult, and men should, therefore, carry two water bottles. A reserve supply of water should be maintained with the first line transport. During the first few days of an offensive, it will scarcely ever be possible to send up supplies of rations.
  • Supply of maps. Maps, air photographs, oblique photographs, and sketches of the zones of attack and of the enemy’s battery positions should be issued down to platoon commanders. Uniformity must be secured in the type of map and the conventional signs used by the infantry and artillery, and also by the air service.
  • Reconnaissance of the sector to be attacked. This should be carried out by the commanders in conjunction with the divisions in line. Movements of all officers or staffs, which might attract the enemy’s attention should be avoided. The sectors of attack selected by the higher commanders mainly from the map should be located on the ground by means of prominent features. The sectors of attack should not all be made equally wide. Where the conditions are more favourable for a rapid advance, the sector should be made narrower.

 

    1. The positions of the enemy’s strong points, woods, etc., the capture of which necessitates special measures (such as an artificial smoke screen, envelopment, etc.), should be noted. Special assault detachments should be detailed in advance for the capture of particular strong points. The troops for holding the captured ground should be detailed in advance.
  • Brigade, regimental and infantry battalion commanders must receive detailed instructions as to the preparation of the attack by artillery, trench mortars, aircraft and, if necessary, tanks, and as to the support which they will receive from these arms. Every subordinate commander must have a general idea of the arrangements. The artillery commander should give the infantry commanders a short explanation of his proposed course of action.
  • The meaning and use of all visual and flare signals, including those of units on the flanks, must be absolutely clear. Their allotment and the method of employing them must be settled in detail.II – THE ASSEMBLY.

 

    1.  
  • Guide detachments (Einweisungskommandos) should be detailed. The routes of approach and the assembly positions should be carefully and inconspicuously reconnoitred, distributed and marked out for the following:-

 

  1. The attacking infantry, with light machine guns distributed as for assault troops. The machine gun group is the tactical unit of the infantry.
  2. The heavy machine guns and light Minenwerfer (generally with their battalions). Machine guns and trench mortars should not be massed. From the outset, the heavy machine guns must be ready to protect the attacking infantry by their fire, and must not be kept in reserve in rear. Machine guns should be detailed from the outset for anti-aircraft defences.
  3. The artillery accompanying the infantry, with a detachment of pioneers (battery commander with the regimental commander).
  4. Carrying parties and police detachments. Means for crossing trenches protected by wire (lengths of duck board, about 13 feet long, are useful). Preparations must be made for the supply of rifle, machine gun (filled belts) and light trench mortar ammunition, rifle grenades and hand grenades; horsed transport and hand-cart echelons.
  5. First line transport. Arrangements must be made for its concentration and for bringing it forward. The most rigorous march discipline must be enforced. Subordinate commanders should check the concentration.
  • Supernumerary officers and N.C.O.s, intended to replace casualties, should be warned in advance and sent forward. A company does not generally need more than one officer, in addition to the company commander, for the first attack.
  • Vehicles with material for crossing obstacles and shell holes should be provided, e.g., fascines and, with the batteries, portable bridges. The requirements must be thought out beforehand. The men of the first line and regimental transport should be trained beforehand in overcoming difficulties of ground.
  • Brigade and regimental command posts in the assembly positions must be fixed, and arrangements made for communication.It is important that the commander should be able to overlook the ground to be attacked.Wireless communication must be established between the regiment and the battalions and artillery sub-groups, as well as with the brigade or the “signal communication head” and from the brigade to the division.Increase of signal traffic before an attack should be avoided. Strict discipline must be enforced in regard to telephone conversations and wireless messages. The “Signal Service Traffic Regulations” must be observed.

 

    1. The subsequent extension of the system of communication intended during the attack must be worked out in advance, and the main lines must be marked out on the map (see para. 23). The whole Staff must have a thorough knowledge of these arrangements and not only the technical officer.
    2. Communication by lamp and signals must be arranged.
    3. Telephonic communication should be established between the regiment and the brigade, between the latter and the division and the artillery groups. In establishing these communications, the arrangements which will be required, as the attack progresses must be taken into account. If the division has pushed its “signal communication head” (Meldekopf) in advance of brigade headquarters, the regiment will establish communication with the division instead of with the brigade (see para.23).
    4. These command posts should be pushed as far forward as possible.
  • Arrangements must be made to organize the first attack in depth, and to form regimental and brigade reserves. The machine guns must be allotted, and each machine gun must be detailed to a special task. The sectors of attack must also be allotted. 

 

  1. III- THE ATTACK.
  2. Each unit must have its objective assigned to it in detail e.g., the capture of particular positions, machine gun nests and dug-outs. Positions which are to be passed by and taken by means of a turning movement must be specially indicated. Arrangements must be made to protect the flanks and to “mop up” trenches. Officers’ watches must be repeatedly synchronized; the hands must be correctly set; it is not sufficient merely to note that a watch is so many minutes fast or slow.
  • Regiment in Front Line.

 

  1.  
  • Watches must again be synchronized shortly before the attack.
  • The infantry should penetrate the enemy’s position simultaneously with the fall of the last rounds of artillery and trench mortars. Everything which might disclose prematurely the hour of the attack must be avoided (no machine gun fire, no cheering etc.).

 

    1. A rapid advance affords the maximum degree of security and ensures success. Beware of traps (ruses). The covering fire of machine guns must always be ready (also that of rifles, rifle grenades, trench mortars and the artillery accompanying the infantry).
  • The minimum objective is the enemy’s artillery position. Consequently, the enemy’s positions should be overrun without a halt, isolated battery positions penetrated and the advance continued beyond the latter positions. The quicker the gun positions are reached, especially those of the heavy artillery situated on reverse slopes, the fewer will be the casualties.
  • From the outset, distribution in depth should be immediately established from rear to front (in echelon, flank defence).
  • The batteries accompanying the infantry should be pushed forward as single guns or by sections, from sector to sector, in such a manner that they are never all out of action at the same time. Sufficient ammunition must be taken forward. A few guns with plenty of ammunition are of more value than a large number of guns with little ammunition. The same applies to the trench mortars. The section commanders of the artillery should open fire on all favourable targets on their own initiative.

 

    1. Infantry regimental and battalion commanders must be acquainted with amount of ammunition carried by their accompanying artillery, in order that ammunition may not be wasted on targets of secondary importance. All reserves, whether they have been specially detailed for this purpose or not, must of their own accord make every effort to assist in getting forward guns and ammunition.
  • The reserves must be brought up closer than is usual in open warfare, but they must not be engaged too soon.
  • The position of commanders must be clearly marked (flags).Brigade and regimental commanders should select positions from which they can see the ground. These positions should be moved forward by bounds to the next point from which observation can be obtained. (Take horses forward.)

 

    1. Command posts should be used as long as possible, otherwise communication fails and command becomes impossible. Commanders should push as far forward as possible, in order that they may exert their personal influence on the troops which they hold in reserve. If necessary, a commander must himself intervene in the conduct of the operations, or must send an officer from his own staff or from his own reserve of officers to any point in the front line where his presence may be required.
    2. The battalion commander accompanies his troops on the battlefield, his place as a rule being in the vicinity of the company reserve.
  • Communication during the attack.
  • During the attack, communication within the regiment, and from the regiment to the brigade, to the artillery in position and artillery accompanying the infantry, to the aeroplane, and to the units on the flanks, is indispensible. As direct telephonic communication in the forward fighting zone cannot generally be relied on, the transmission of information must be effected by other means (liaison officers, mounted orderlies and cyclists).
  • The division will push forward continually, and as far as possible, on the general alignment of regimental headquarters, a report centre (“signal communications head”) which will be connected by telephone to the division through the brigade. It will, in addition, be plentifully provided with every other means of communication. All orders and reports will be sent through this report centre, which will ensure their transmission. It is essential that all information regarding the successive positions of the regimental command posts should be notified to this report centre. When command posts move, someone must be left at the old headquarters to receive orders until such time as the new headquarters is completely established. The report centre will establish telephonic communication with the regiment as soon as the forward movement has come to a standstill.
  • Communication within the regiment, and from the regiment to neighbouring regiments and to report centre, will be carried out by mounted orderlies.

 

  1. Communication with the artillery in position will be carried out through the artillery liaison officer who is attached to each battalion. Each battalion must be in possession of a signalling detachment.
  2. Communication with the artillery accompanying the infantry must be established either direct with the commander concerned or through the artillery liaison officers. (In addition, the artillery staff must be able to observe for themselves.)
  3. Communication with aircraft will be carried out by laying out cloth signals near the command posts and message dropping stations, as soon as the infantry aeroplane appears.
  4. The troops in front line will lay out cloth signals as soon as they have reached their objective, or, if the advance has come to a standstill, as a rule only when the aeroplane calls for them.
  • The progress of the attack will not be uniform. Reserves must only be employed at points where an initial success has been obtained; this initial success should be extended by a turning movement or by rolling up any portions of the line which still hold out. This systematic enveloping movement should be continued with the assistance of the supporting troops, the leading assault waves continuing to press forward in their sector of attack. The personal influence of infantry commanders and their own spirit and initiative are frequently decisive. The centre of gravity of the attack must always be clearly recognised. It is important to occupy high ground; massing should be avoided; cover should always be taken from air observation.
  • Machine guns, artillery and trench mortar fire should be rapidly concentrated upon centres of resistance which are successfully holding up our advance from a flank; assault troops should be pushed forward to attack from a flank by means of an enveloping movement; too large a force should not be used for this purpose, nor must the general direction of the attack be lost sight of.
  • Centres of resistance and hostile artillery battery positions tend to split up the attacking troops, and all ranks must immediately endeavour to regain touch with their commanders. It is the duty of the latter to collect and reorganize their forces repeatedly, and to re-establish the distribution in depth. New reserves should be formed.
  • The most distant objective should be allotted to the first wave, which should push forward as far as possible. The first and second waves should overrun the hostile trenches. It is expressly forbidden (for these troops) to take prisoners or clear dug-outs.
  • Troops must not collect in villages or in woods, but should go round the edges of them. As soon as the attack of a village has succeeded, the majority of the troops should be at once withdrawn. A protective garrison should be left behind.

 

    1. Deep dug-outs and caves should be searched at once, in order to discover enemy nests and isolated stragglers.
  • The necessity for co-operation between battalions and regiments must never be lost sight of. They should not, however, wait for one another, but care should be taken that the flanks of elements which are advancing independently are protected by supporting troops and, above all, by machine guns.
  • Arrangements must be made for the supply of ammunition for machine guns (filled belts), trench mortars and artillery, and for the supply of hand grenades and of water for machine guns. The various echelons of horsed transport and hand-carts must follow up the attacking infantry.

 

  1. Repairs to machine guns should be carried out at the wagons. Belts must be filled. Empty boxes and belts should be returned to the wagons.
  • Regiment in Support.
  • The general task of the regiment in support is to carry forward the attack when the forces of the initial blow becomes spent. As a general rule, it should not intervene in the battle unless ordered to do so by the brigade: it is the duty of the regimental commander, however, to act entirely on his own initiative in an emergency.
  • The later the regiment is engaged, the better. Its spirit must not be daunted in the event of small local reverses. It should only be engaged at points where the attack progresses.
  • It must maintain visual communication with the front line regiment. The commander of the support regiment must be able, personally, to view the battlefield, otherwise it will be impossible for him to command his regiment.
  • Communication with the brigade (in the event of the unit being divisional reserve, with the division) with the artillery, etc., as laid down in para. 23.
  • A reconnaissance of the ground with a view to bringing forward the troops in 2nd line must be carried out from the assembly position. The final decision as to the roads of approach and the formation to be adopted for the attack will depend on the fall of the enemy’s fire. Areas which are not swept by fire must be utilized; if the formation is temporarily lost, it should be re-established.
  • The scattered elements of the front line regiment must be collected, reorganized and brought up as a reserve to the second line. For this purpose, energetic officers should be kept in readiness. The company Feldwebel, with the first line transport, should collect stragglers and control wounded.

 

    1. IV. REPULSE OF HOSTILE COUNTER-ATTACKS.
    2. Police measures should be very strict behind the front.
    3. A study of the hostile position, of the ground, and of the attitude of the enemy during raids carried out by patrols and during minor operations undertaken by divisions in line, gives the best indication regarding the position of the enemy’s main line of resistance. Counter-attacks carried out by local reserves need only be expected in the main line of resistance; counter-attacks by larger forces need only be anticipated behind the main line of resistance.
    4. The points where hostile counter-attacks and tank attacks are likely to be delivered should be the subject of careful previous consideration.
  • If distribution in depth is continually maintained, counter-attacks are almost certain to be repulsed. In repelling a counter-attack, the co-operation of machine guns, batteries accompanying the infantry, light Minenwerfer and trench mortar companies is necessary; in this respect, heavy machine guns should be employed in dominating positions in rear in a similar manner to the batteries accompanying the infantry, in order to afford protection by their fire to the advancing infantry. They should advance rapidly in echelon from one position to another; they should be distributed chequerwise. The forward companies will employ their light machine guns in the front line.
  • As soon as a counter-attack or a hostile attack has been repulsed, an immediate counter-thrust should be delivered. The principle concern of commanders is to see that the general forward movement is immediately resumed and that the enemy is pressed as closely as possible. In particular, the fresh reserves which have been engaged to repel the counter-attack must continue the forward movement; new reserves must be constituted by collecting together all available units.V. – ACTION TO BE TAKEN WHEN THE OBJECTIVES HAVE BEEN GAINED.

 

  • A formation should be rapidly adopted which will ensure the maintenance of the ground which has been gained against the enemy’s counter-attacks, until the attack can be continued. Units should be organized in considerable depth in the formation which will eventually be necessary for the continuance of the attack. The reserves will then form the counter-attack troops required for the defence of the position. Small parties should be pushed forward to act as a screen; reconnaissance must be continually carried out. Arrangements must be made to secure flanking fire from the machine guns sited at points which cannot be seen by the enemy; these points are frequently situated on low-lying ground. Flanks must be secured; touch must be maintained and co-operation effected with neighbouring units. Machine guns must be brought into position for defence against aircraft.
  • Order must be re-established in units, reserves detailed, and communication established with higher formations and with units on the flanks. New commanders must make themselves known by name to subordinate commanders, and the latter must make themselves known to the men.
  • Communication must be established with the artillery, which should rapidly organize the artillery defence (artilleristische Abwehr). It is important that the artillery should have direct observation, so as to be able to detect the hostile counter-attack and break it up the moment it is launched. All points which would form good observation posts should be immediately reported to the artillery. All results of infantry observation should be communicated to the artillery by the most rapid means available.
  • The supply of ammunition and food must be ensured and the travelling kitchens brought up.
  • Construction of the position. – Units should dig themselves in as rapidly as possible. The exact trace of the line will not be settled until later. Attention must be paid to the distribution of the forces engaged, and to arrangements for reliefs and rest. Protection against aerial observation is of very great importance.
  • Medical services.
  • In certain circumstances, units which have suffered heavily should be relieved in good time.
  • As soon as his counter-attacks have been repulsed, the enemy should be attacked immediately and pursued with fresh forces.All the above arrangements must be made in close agreement with the artillery and the units on the flanks.VI – SUCCESSFUL PENETRATION OF THE ENEMY’S POSITIONS.

 

  1.  
  2.  
  3. As soon as the enemy’s positions and artillery have been captured, the fighting assumes more the character of open warfare. Methodical preparations come to an end and personal initiative and vigorous action take their place.The commander’s place is well forward. Columns of route must be rapidly formed, and the artillery accompanying the infantry and the light Minenwerfer must follow closely on the roads.
  4. Assert and exploit German superiority in open warfare.
  5. The pursuit of the enemy should be rapid and uninterrupted. He must be given no respite, even during the night. One unit should not wait for another. At the same time, effective measures must always be taken to overcome by fire any unforeseen resistance (machine guns, artillery in position). There must be close co-operation with the artillery. Sections of artillery or single guns should move with the advanced guard.
  6. Reconnoitring patrols should be sent out at once to the front and flanks; these should have mounted orderlies and cyclists attached to them. The flanks should be covered by reserves in echelon, and especially by machine guns.
  7. Communication must be maintained with higher formations and with units on the flanks as described above. Communication must also be maintained with the first line transport.
  8. Attention must be paid to the supply of ammunition and rations. The supply officer and N.C.O.s of the train must, on their own initiative, keep in constant touch with the battalion staff.
  9. Arrangements must be made beforehand to give the troops rest during the short halts. The travelling kitchens should be brought up, or orders given for the iron rations to be consumed. Iron rations consumed must be replaced immediately.VII. – ACTION AGAINST THE ENEMY’S REARWARD POSITIONS.
  10. The enemy’s rearward positions are best carried by the first vigorous pursuit. Such attacks must be supported by fire. A short concentration of fire by machine guns, trench mortars and the artillery accompanying the infantry will often prove sufficient. If the capture of these positions is delayed, it usually involves heavier casualties.Single heavy guns should be brought rapidly forward, as their action is frequently decisive.
  11. In principle, patrols should be pushed forward to the attack well in advance of the troops. Such patrols will often dislodge the enemy if he is already shaken, and, in any case, they should carry the enemy’s outpost zone.
  12. If the enemy has had time to garrison his rearward positions with fresh reserves, he should first of all be driven from the zone in front of those positions, so that the ground necessary for the development of the subsequent attack can be thoroughly consolidated.A co-ordinated attack, after an artillery preparation, will then be carried out under the orders of the higher command. General Headquarters,
  13. 4th July, 1918.
  14. General Staff (Intelligence),
  15. The procedure in this instance is similar to, but more rapid than, that for the first attack.
  16. A thorough close reconnaissance must be made to find out the situation and depth of the enemy’s position, and the method of holding it. Where is the weakest point? Which is the easiest line of approach?