1st August, 1916
Slept in bushes again last night, but had rotten night, woke about 1 a.m.,
did not get to sleep again till 3 a.m. and was awake again 4.30 a.m.,
lay till 6 a.m. and got up. Guns booming all night. On duty 8 a.m. looking
after couple of tents of wounded, get fresh cases and evacuate to C.C.S.
as fast as they arrive. Passed about 40 cases through today. This afternoon
four German planes flew over, heavily shelled by our anti-aircraft guns
but apparently got away. Cleared all patients this evening, expect our
troops to attack tonight and inrush of wounded tomorrow. Off duty 9 p.m.,
turned in 10 p.m.
Wednesday 2nd August, 1916
Orders issued last night, no man to sleep in hospital grounds. Billets
allotted as are 20 minutes walk away, filthy and alive so slept over way
in an orchard. Up 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. No attack last night so
not many wounded in today. At 10 a.m. was told off to attend a badly wounded
officer, looked after him till 4 p.m. and went back to my other duties.
Heard that 2 of German planes that flew over Page 41 of 69 yesterday were
caught by our planes and brought down. Heavy artillery firing started
about 7.45 p.m. Wonder if start of another advance. Off duty at 8 p.m.
and turned in about 9.30 p.m.
Thursday 3rd August, 1916
Terrific bombardment by our guns all night till about 5 a.m. this morning
when they eased a bit. Up at 6 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Fairly busy morning,
most of wounded who arrived belonged to 4th Pioneer Batt. The officer
I nursed yesterday (Capt. Ward 23rd Batt.) died before midnight. After
dinner things were very quiet. Our aeroplanes very active. Had half a
dozen wounded in after tea, not dangerous. Off duty 8 p.m. Wrote till
it was too dark to see and turned in about 9.30 p.m. Our guns started
bombarding heavily again about 9.45 p.m.
Friday 4th August, 1916
Our guns went heavily most of night but eased off somewhat about 5 a.m.
Up at 6 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Had fair No. of wounded in this morning,
some very severe. Learned from these men that Tommies had taken two trenches
from Fritz last night to the right of our position, and that Fritz seemed
annoyed and was shelling somewhat indiscriminately. Much quieter after
2 p.m. so padded lot of splints ready in case of rush of casualties. Received
four letters today. Off duty 9.15 p.m., several patients arriving late.
Artillery started about 9.15 p.m. In bed 9.45 p.m.
Saturday 5th August, 1916
Heavy bombardment during night, sky all aglow. Called out at 2.30 a.m.,
big rush of wounded. Our boys attacked at 9.28 p.m. last night and captured
enemy trenches. Going for my life all day, snatched hurried breakfast
at 10.15 a.m., dinner 3 p.m. and tea about 8 p.m., not a minute to spare.
Had about 40 wounded Germans in, but attended our own boys first. Kept
at it till 11.25 p.m. when rush was over. Absolutely tired out. Most wounds
caused by high explosive shell, very few from rifle bullets. Turned in
about 12 p.m.
Sunday 6th August, 1916
Up 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m., steady flow of wounded all day including
about dozen Germans. Our section treated nearly 300 wounded yesterday
and up to tonight the Amb. has passed through just about 700 wounded.
Kept busy all day but not rushed like yesterday. Managed to get my meals
better. Our troops beat off enemy counter attacks and are still holding
captured position. Had to personally dress wounds of several of enemy.
Our bearers went out last night. Off duty 9.30 p.m. and turned in 10 p.m.
Monday 7th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Fairly quiet first part of morning
but about 10 a.m. wounded started coming in and kept us going steadily
along till 6 p.m. when eased off again. Heavy artillery firing during
this afternoon. Two of B. Section of our Amb. bearers wounded during night.
Lieut. Jacka, Aust. first V.C., came through wounded today. Our boys having
very hot time from enemy guns. Managed to get a bath this evening. Fairly
quiet after 6.30 p.m. for us but guns going heavily. Turned in 9 p.m.
Tuesday 8th August, 1916
Page 42 of 69 Up at 6.30 a.m., on duty 8 a.m., first job I had was to
dress a French boy's hand which had been badly shattered by a bomb in
a fire, he was about 14 years old. At 11 a.m. went in motor ambulance
to divisional rest station with patients and called at "Contay"
where first Anzac Hdqutrs are for mail from field post office. Got two
bags, only one letter for me from soldier in India. Artillery going very
heavily. Very few wounded in today so managed to write couple of letters.
Warned to be ready for call out in night so turned in 9 p.m.
Wednesday 9th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Good number of wounded brought in today,
mostly from 15th Batt. who along with one company of 16th Batt. attacked
and took some German trenches last night. Couple of German wounded came
in today. Good number of men are coming in suffering from shell shock,
pitiable to see. Believe shell fire further up is something terrible.
Off duty 8 p.m., sat outside tent till 9.30 p.m. when saw one of our planes
come over with lights attached to wings and tail then turned in.
10th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty at 8 a.m. Very quiet all day today, just few
odd slight wounds and two Germans seriously wounded, one a stretcher bearer,
evidently been hit and lying out some days. Warned to expect visit from
the King this afternoon and to have everything spick and span. King expected
about 3 p.m. O.C. and other officers done up to kill and everything all
in order but King passed along main street without calling, did not see
him. Very quiet after tea, so sat talking and turned in 9 p.m.
Friday 11th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Tidied up and had about eight wounded
in before dinner. Our boys advanced another 200 yards last night. After
dinner closed up our dressing tent and we had to unload Amb. cars with
wounded while C. section did the dressing as all our bearers are out.
Major Welch was out near front today and brought back a small wicker cradle
from German dug out. Very few wounded after dinner. Learned that our division
had 1200 casualties before getting into trenches. Off duty 8 p.m. and
in bed 9 p.m.
Saturday 12th August, 1916
Up at 6 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Was not sure what duty we were to be on
today but were put on unloading wounded from motors and general fatigue
work at front of dressing station usually done by bearers. Not many wounded
today, though guns were going solidly last night. Unload large motor wagon
of tents etc. and stood by all day till 8 p.m. for any kind of duty. One
of our C. section bearers brought down from further up suffering from
shell shock. Our planes as usual very busy. Turned in 9 p.m.
Sunday 13th August, 1916
Very quiet last night. Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. at front gate
unloading wounded of which very few today. Went to D.R.S. at 11 a.m.,
also to field post office in motor. After dinner some 6th field Amb. men
came to give us hand. Instructing a party this afternoon how to carry
on, do not seem to Page 43 of 69 know much. Went to field post office
in motor again at 2 p.m., got one bag mail. About 4.30 p.m. German plane
came over but about 4 shots from anti-aircraft gun sent it back again.
Off duty 8 p.m., in bed 9 p.m.
Monday 14th August, 1916
Up 6.30 a.m., on duty 8 a.m. Things very slack so at 9 a.m. got a parcel
of goods and hopped on motor amb. which took me through Millencourt and
Henencourt to Albert, then got on another motor and arrived at Becourt
wood, changed again on to a horse wagon and arrived at Casualty Corner
just behind our lines, walked about 1 1/2 miles to some of our bearers,
had dinner and went into support trenches, was 15 yards behind our front
line. Just got in and enemy opened his guns on the supports levelling
trenches all round. Hit on leg, small piece of shell spent. An awful bombardment.
Waited an hour before could get out and arrived back in stages at 8 p.m.
In bed 9 p.m. Went through Contalmaison to about 1/2 mile beyond Poseries.
Tuesday 15th August, 1916
Sausage Valley, Chalk Pit, Black Watch Alley, Sunken Rd. trench. Not a
brick left in Posieries and very little at Contalmaison, enemy shelling
all the time, terrible scene of desolation, every inch of ground shell
holes. Up at 6.30 a.m., on duty 8 a.m. unloading cars at gate. Very busy
this morning. Our boys attacked a farm and surroundings last night (13th
Bgde). Do not know the result yet, but we had fair number of casualties.
Unloading cars and carrying wounded back and to all day. Guns very quiet
today. Rained fairly hard after tea, ground very muddy. Off duty 8 p.m.,
turned in 9 p.m.
Wednesday 16th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty at 8 a.m. Very busy till dinner time loading
and unloading and carrying wounded, a good number coming in. Very shorthanded,
3 of us doing 10 men's work. The last of our division were relieved last
night and first division now in trenches, fair number of them knocked
out already. Busy again from 4 p.m. till 8 p.m. when came off duty. Enemy
plane attempted to come over this morning but cleared as soon as one of
our battle planes went for it. Our bearers came in tonight. Turned in
Thursday 17th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty at 8 a.m. Very busy loading, unloading and
carrying wounded, also doing general fatigue work, sweeping the grounds
and tents and making things tidy. Some of our chaps saw one of our planes
bring down two enemy planes this morning in our lines. One came down on
fire. Had to go to cemetery with a man who had died of wounds while on
the way to our dressing station. Heard this afternoon that the Jocks had
captured Mouquet Farm and over 700 prisoners. Off duty 8 p.m., in bed
Friday 18th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty at 8 a.m. General fatigue work till 11 a.m.
Had to go in motor again this morning with another man who had died of
wounds. On duty stretcher bearing again till 1.30 p.m. when relieved.
Had this afternoon to ourselves, bearers being back from advanced post.
We are not so shorthanded and are to work in eight hour shifts instead
of 12 hours. Spent whole of afternoon in Page 44 of 69 writing letters
as post has opened again today. Our planes very busy flying about all
day. After tea had sleep as have to go on duty at 12 midnight.
Saturday 19th August, 1916
Had very busy night, some Battalions of first division (7th and 8th I
think) making charge on enemy's trenches in the evening. Had nearly eighty
wounded in and had all fixed up before being relieved at 8 a.m. this morning.
Turned in after breakfast for a sleep till dinner time, also had a nap
this afternoon. Our guns going solidly all afternoon and this evening
we could see the flashes in the sky as they fired. Did little writing
after tea and on duty at 12 midnight.
20th August, 1916
Had fairly quiet night, only having about twenty wounded until we knocked
off at 8 a.m. Most of night we passed in playing cards waiting for patients
to arrive. Turned into bed about 9.30 a.m. and slept till 4.15 p.m. when
got up and cleaned for tea. Our aeroplanes buzzing about a lot this evening.
Was writing till about 8.30 p.m. when had game of cards till 9.30 p.m.
and then turned in for nap till 11 p.m. when got up and on duty 12 midnight.
Monday 21st August, 1916
Guns were roaring incessantly all night. Only had about fifteen wounded
in, but some were badly hit. Most of wounds are from shell fire, very
few being from rifle bullet. Two of wounded were stretcher bearers, one
from 1st Field Amb. and one from 3rd Field Amb. Played cards during time
while waiting for patients. Off duty 8 a.m. Very cloudy day and enemy
planes dropped two bombs on Albert from which we had 9 killed and 31 wounded,
mostly Artillery men. Got up at 4.30 p.m. and after tea had read and sleep
before going on duty at midnight.
Tuesday 22nd August, 1916
Had to take charge of our tent division last night as Cpl. Chisholm sent
in charge of officers' rest house. Although our troops made attack and
advanced yesterday evening, we did not have many wounded in, only about
twenty four, but as usual, most of them were pretty severe injuries. Off
duty 8 a.m. Enemy planes tried to come across our lines this morning,
but our planes and anti-aircraft guns speedily drove them away. Went to
sleep about 10 a.m. and slept till 4.30 p.m. Rested after tea and on duty
at 12 midnight.
Wednesday 23rd August, 1916
Fairly quiet night, wounded coming in at intervals. Altogether had about
fifteen, one man shot through both lungs died. Two patients had been gassed,
one recovered sufficiently to be sent to C.C.S., other died during day.
Off duty at 8 a.m. Had breakfast and read for half an hour then went to
sleep till 4.30 p.m. when got up and cleaned for tea. Our artillery very
busy this evening, guns roaring continuously. After tea had talk to some
1st F. Amb. men just come from advanced post. One section full strength
returned with 18 men. On duty 12 midnight.
Thursday 24th August, 1916
Quietest night we have had, only had two patients, one sick and one wounded,
so managed to write a couple of letters. Rained during night a little.
Off duty at 8 a.m. Had breakfast and turned in till 3 p.m. Page 45 of
69 when cleaned myself up for tea. After tea did some washing and writing.
Our planes busy again this evening, saw twelve in one batch go over towards
enemy's lines, possibly a raid on. Been very nice day. Had an hours sleep
and on duty midnight.
Friday 25th August, 1916
Very quiet again last night, did not get a case in till 7 a.m. when car
brought in three wounded. Was reading and playing cards all night. Off
duty 8 a.m. After breakfast turned in for sleep till 2 p.m. when got up
and had hot bath. B. section bearers went up to trenches yesterday. A.
and C. section bearers standing ready to go at any time. After tea yarned
and smoked before turning in again. Been showery but warm. On duty at
Saturday 26th August, 1916
Few more cases in last night, had about twenty altogether, most of them
bad wounds, great number of compound fractures among the wounds here,
expect a great no. will lose their limbs. Very dull when we finished duty
at 8 a.m. and shortly after rained but later turned out very fine. Slept
from 9.30 a.m. till 1.30 p.m. Hard to sleep with men on duty running and
shouting all round. After tea our planes very busy again. Did not go on
duty at midnight tonight.
Sunday 27th August, 1916
Up at 7 a.m., breakfast 7.30 a.m. Had to stand by for any duty till 10
a.m. when put on bearing and unloading wounded and general fatigue. A.
sec. bearers went out to trenches at 12 noon, and C. sec. at 1 p.m. Rained
hard at intervals all day. Very few wounded came in today, only about
10 all day so had it pretty easy. Sky cleared for about two hours between
6 p.m. and 8 p.m. and our planes were out at once. Relieved by some R.A.M.C.
men at 8 p.m. and turned in about 8.45 p.m.
Monday 28th August, 1916
Up at 7 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. at gate, unloading wounded and carrying.
Not much doing this morning, rained hard after dinner. Cars brought in
wounded fairly brisk for couple of hours after which eased off again.
Received news this morning of Italy's declaration of war on Germany and
this afternoon of Roumania's declaration of war on Austria-Hungary. Sky
cleared a little this evening and planes started buzzing. Before came
off duty at 8 p.m. warned to be ready if called out any time up to 2 a.m.
in morning. In bed 9 p.m.
Tuesday 29th August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Very few patients in today. On same
job as yesterday. All last night and this morning our guns were going
solidly. At 10.30 a.m. went in car to cemetery with man who died during
night. Saw barb-wire compound with about 150 German prisoners, some of
them doing fatigue work. Rained hard this morning and this afternoon had
pretty heavy thunder storm. Cleared up after tea and planes came out.
Heard rumour that Greece had declared war on Bulgaria. Off duty 8 p.m.,
in bed 9 p.m.
Wednesday 30th August, 1916
Page 46 of 69 Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty 8 a.m. Very wet and miserable
day. Fatigue work this morning hauling down tents etc. Canadians marched
into village this morning. At 2 p.m. B. and C. section tent divisions
went out to Albert. Our section (A) in charge of dressing station here
assisted by Canadian Amb. Cleaning up and putting things in order occupied
afternoon. Battery of big guns very close somewhere, firing very heavily
this afternoon. Heard British had naval victory, sinking 43 enemy ships
to our 16. Off duty 8, in bed 9 p.m.
Thursday 31st August, 1916
Up at 6.30 a.m. and on duty at 8 a.m. Not much doing as some of our brigades
are out of trenches now, what wounded came in were simply plastered with
mud and mostly suffering from severe colds. A Canadian officer, Major
Frazer, working with us. Last night and this afternoon our guns bombarded
tremendously heavy. Very nice day today, snatched an hour and wrote a
letter just before tea. Only half dozen patients after tea and off duty
8 p.m., turned in at 9 p.m.