Wednesday 18 January 2017

It Ended in Tears

Gas Masks at the Imperial War Museum

Thursday 18th January 1917

1st Battalion, Bedfordshire Regiment is in the front line at Cuinchy, east of Béthune. This afternoon the Germans, for reasons unknown, perhaps just for something to do, shelled the artillery battery supporting the Bedfords. The adjutant said he estimated about five hundred shells went over their heads. It turned out these shells were filled with lachrymatory, or tear, gas as the gas blew back onto the Bedfords causing copious eye irritations but, fortunately, no further casualties.

Source: X550/2/5

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