British private served with 4th Bn Grenadier Guards on Western Front, 1915-1918.
REEL 1: Aspects of period in GB, 1894-1914: family background, education and employment in Ascot, Berkshire; enlisted with Grenadier Guards at Reading Barracks, 7/Sep/1914; posted to Caterham Barracks, Surrey, for six months training; guard duties at Buckingham Palace and St. James's Palace, London; drafted to 4th Bn Grenadier Guards at Marlow, 7/1915; posted to France, 8/1915. Aspects of operations with 4th Bn Grenadier Guards on Western Front, 8/1915-1918: role in operations during Battle of Loos, 9/1915; attitude to fear; description of advance from Vermelles; use of pithead towers ('Tower Bridge') as landmark; took cover in shallow trenches; story of Very light landing on haversack; Bn withdrawn to Bethune due to heavy casualties; description of German counter-attack; attitude to German casualties; opinion of officers during battle; role of 2nd Life Guards as pioneer battalion; weather conditions; description of journey from Le Havre into line; story of celebrating 21st birthday at Laventie, Somme, 1916.
REEL 2 Continues: reason for transferring to 31st Div; description of German attack at Ayette, 3/1918; summary of movements and duties in Ypres sector, 1918; posted to Army of Occupation in Cologne, Germany, 21/Dec/1918; opinion of Cologne; relations with German civilians; story about receiving news of Armistice during voyage to England, 11/1918; posted back to Bn after Armistice; reflections on wartime experiences; attitude to Germans; various memories of friends; problem of rats; various memories of seeing the Prince of Wales; opinion of Cpt. Morrison; attitude to having to grow a moustache after enlistment.
REEL 3 Continues: reasons for joining up and attitude to patriotism; reaction of parents to enlistment; reason for joining the Guards; story about cousin Stanley enlisting underage and effect of death on family; further comments on reasons for joining up.
The Battle of Verdun (21 February-15 December 1916) became the longest battle in modern history. It was originally planned by the German Chief of General Staff, Erich von Falkenhayn to secure victory for Germany on the Western Front.
'Over The Top'. 1st Artists' Rifles at Marcoing, 30th December 1917, by John Nash.
Brothers Paul and John Nash were both commissioned as official war artists during the First World War - Paul from 1917 and John from 1918. Prior to becoming official war artists, both of the brothers had seen active service on the Western Front.
The trench warfare of the Western Front encouraged the development of new weaponry to break the stalemate. Poison gas was one such development. The first significant gas attack occurred at Ypres in April 1915, when the Germans released clouds of poisonous chlorine.