Aolib.comFragment of Photochrom print of the front of Neuschwanstein Castle, Bavaria, Germany (ca. 1897)

The Fifth Battalion Highland Light Infantry in the War 1914-1918 »


By F. L. Morrison

Street and Central Street, in which latter Battalion Headquarters were

situated.

Our first night passed uneventfully, but the following day we gathered

that something was brewing. Orders were received to clear the western

portion of our firing line and support trench to permit of a bombardment

by the French artillery. (The French held the right sector at

Gallipoli.) Fire opened at 3.45 p.m. and for about two hours the

“Seventy—fives” kept at it, doing considerable visible damage to the

enemy’s wire and trenches. The enemy replied with counter—battery work,

and also shelled our communication trenches what time Colonel Morrison

and Captain Simson, our Adjutant, had the unpleasant duty of

reconnoitring the area in which the bulk of the enemy’s fire was

falling. They were searching for trenches in which the Battalion would

be held in reserve for the attack which was now in preparation.

During the night Lieut. W. Beckett reported some activity in No—man’s

Land in front of “A” Company and invited the bombers to try their hand.

Now the bombers had received their first introduction to their

precarious weapons only 24 hours previously, when they took over from

the 7th H.L.I. a Garland mortar, a trench catapult and various crude

jam—tin and canister bombs of sinister aspect. Selecting the catapult,

which Lieut. Leith thought would be less dangerous to his team than the

mortar, they aimed as best they could in the dark, applied a canister

bomb to the pouch, lit the fuse and pressed the trigger. The shot was a

lucky one exceeding their highest expectations. It burst among a party

of Turks crouching in the open. Amid shrieks of “Allah!” survivors could

be distinguished making for cover. Immediately the Turkish line opened

up rapid fire, which was continued for about half an hour before things

settled down to normal again.

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