59th Division. 1915-1918 by E. U. Bradbridge

By E. U. Bradbridge

The 59th department was once a Territorial second-line department (2nd N Midland), that got here into life in January 1915. In April 1916, following the Easter rebellion, the department was once despatched to eire, to Dublin, the 1st TF department to serve in eire. After suppressing the difficulty in Dublin the 59th was once despatched to the Curragh the place it engaged in warfare education for the remainder of the yr, returning to England in January 1917. within the following March the department crossed to France and served thereafter at the Western entrance - at 3rd Ypres, Cambrai, at St Quentin and Bapaume within the German offensive of March 1918, at Baileul and Kemmel Ridge through the German offensive at the Lys in April 1918. In early may perhaps the department used to be decreased to education cadre prestige, wasting its infantry battalions and different devices, however the following month it used to be reconstituted with type B males from Garrison safeguard battalions. After a interval of teaching the department went again into the road on the finish of July and took half within the operations east of Amiens in August and within the ultimate develop in Artois and Flanders.'This account is rare in respects: within the first position it's not a proper background yet a chain of narratives contributed through commanders and others, from GOC all the way down to a WO at divisional HQ, describing occasions from their perspective; and within the moment position there's a individually released complement containing additional narratives from one of many brigade commanders, from the OCs box squadrons, RE and from one of many divisional RASC corporation OCs. one of many narratives describes a brigade’s operations opposed to the Sinn Fein in Dublin, during which on one occcasion brigade casualties amounted to 19 officials and 143 different ranks of whom 30 died. The complement is integrated during this reprint. one of the appendices is one quoting examples of acts of gallantry together with one of many VCs offered; one other offers a precis of the divisional checklist from formation to armistice and there are extracts from respectable correspondence and operational orders. quite a few leisure occasions are defined - horse races, competitions for divisional shipping, box ambulances, sign corporation and different equestrian occasions. One very priceless merchandise is a desk directory the entire division’s strikes, with dates, from arrival in France on 26 February 1917 to eight March 1919, giving destinations and Corps and armed forces subordination.

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The guards were from Aachen. They were bitter. " Like they never thought of it. They were killing people all over the world and when they had to take it, they couldn't. "When we came back, the army did not want negative publicity about Germany. We had to sign a pledge not to talk about what happened to us. They were bringing in German scientists. The US Government's attitude towards Germany was strange. America paid for so much of the rebuilding of Germany that Churchill said; 'the Americans forget who was their enemy and who were their friends...

They conducted themselves with some dignity. They allowed their prisoners some dignity. At Berga, we were not allowed any of that. We were in a concentration camp. "I was in Berga 100 days. I weighed 176 lbs. when I went in. And I weighed 86 lbs. when I was liberated. I had gangrene in my legs or the beginning stages of it, when we were liberated. If the war had lasted another 24 to 48 hours I probably would not be here. "There were just three of us from my company in Berga. One was Jewish like me.

The object was to get the most work for the least amount of food. At Berga, this was to cause us to die. "Inside the mine no one got through a shift without a beating. They would beat us for any reasonD. You just looked at them wrong, or if they were in a bad mood, they would beat you. They killed a lot of guys with those beatings. "What they were doing was drillE, EE some holes and blastO Efl out the slate and the rock. Our job was to load wagons with the slate and then wheel them out and dump them into a tip on the Elster River.

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