Medical Officer’s Diary of the 18th Battalion: October 1918: September 1915

Note:  This is the Medical Officer’s War Diary and offers some many illuminating insights into the life of our Canadian soldiers. Sadly, the war diary has a lot of parts that are illegible and consequently it is very difficult to deduce the writing and the mean there of. Included are the images downloaded from the Archives for your reference.

CONFIDENTIAL

WAR DIARY

OF

M.O. 18th Infantry Battalion

From 14th September 1915 TO 30th September 1915

VOLUME No 4.

Place Date Hour Summary of Events and Information
1 No entry.
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14 5:30 pm

9:30 pm

10:50 pm

Left Sandling Camp to march to Folkstone. Water Duties Unit; Stretcher Bearers + Sanitary Squad complete.

Left the docks enroute to Boulogne.

Rammed by British destroyer:  have to be towed to Boulogne where we arrived at 5 pm. Nine men jumped on the destroyer at the time of collision and rejoined the Battalion four days later.

15 5 am

6:15

10:30

arrived and marched to rest camp. Left at hospital there the following:

No. 54067 Pte Steentonsynovitis ankle.

No. 54279 Pte Montgomery  – incised wound elbow.

No. 53554 Pte R Cassell – gastritis.

No. 53689 Pte C. Hooker – abscess pubic area.

No. 54159 Pte W. Cunliffe – contused knee.

Entrained for Saint Omer.

Started march from Saint Omer to Renescune arriving there 2 am and billeting for most of the night.

16 11 am Left for Eecke via Hazenbrouck. About 200 men dropped out owing to fatigue or sore feet. These men joined the Bttn two days later.
17 am/pm Men remained in billets & rested.
18 am/pm Rested in billets.
19 am/pm Expecting to be moved. The following men, unable to march were sent to the 5th Field Amb.

No 5335 1Pte G Lee – contusion leg.

No. 54035 Pte R. McDonald – synovitis knee.

No. 53702 Pte Mariette – synovitis knee.

No. 53768 Cpl. R.E. Allen – [illegible].

No. 54181 Pte. C.G. Harding – synovitis knee.

20 am/pm Men rested [illegible] for some physical service [sic]. Sent to 5 Fld. Ambulance.

No. 53478 Pte  Tuxford – synovitis knee.

No. 53532 Sgt Crosby – appendix – sub acute.

21 7 pm While marching to R.E. Farm no. 53902 Pte. Dewar was wounded by bullet through fleshy part of thigh. Was sent to hospital. Also…

No. 53439 Pte Bancroft [illegible] – appendicitis acute.

No. 53206 Pte Bryson – influenza.

22 Rested in camp areas.
23 No. 54070 Pte Chilvers hemoptysis to 5th Fld. Ambulance.
24 2 am Rested in camp.
25 Battalion called out to man reserve trenches. Casualties…

Major Sale with sprained ankle, sent to 5th Fld. Amb.

No. 53242 J. Jackson with epilepsy.

Also from R.E. Farm no. 53849 Stanley was sent to hospital with pleurisy.

26 In reserve trenches all day. C + B companies went into first line trenches, A + D returned to camp at 7 pm.
27 Rested in camp area.
28 7 am

5:30 pm

A + D companies marched to [illegible] over trenches from (19?) Btn.

No. 53476 Pte HJ Logan shot through [illegible].

29

7 am

8:30 am

1 pm

Rather heavy bombardment from German guns.

Capt. Hallam shot through head + killed instantly while looking over broken parapet. [illegible] puncture!

No. 53863 Pte. RC Taylor – scabies.

30 A quiet day. At about 4 pm No. 53227 Pte W.W. Frew, while filling sandbags in D support was shot by a stray bullet which ploughed through the base of the skull killing him instantly.

No. 53423 Sgt. S.J. Real broke his plate of false teeth [illegible] would eat nothing without them. He was sent to 5th Fld. Amb. for repairs.

Notes:

The 18th Battalion C.E.F. was “blooded” in this month. After training in England since May 1915 the battalion was shipped to France and then marched to the Ypres area for acclimation and eventually combat in the trenches.

The battalion suffered several casualties of varying seriousness but it had its first men killed in action. Coincidentally, on September 29, 1915 two soldiers died but only Captain Hallam in listed in the Medical Officer’s War Diary.

Also died that day was  Pte.LOGAN, HERBERT JOHN, 53746. He was 22 and the son of E.R. and M. Logan of Brantford, Ontario. See link for more information on this soldier.

Listed in the Christmas Expositor, Christmas 1915, Brantford Ontario.

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