The Great War, I was there - Part 27

....................... 0 99 ! > ¦ ¦ *,***#!5! H * 8 iI! p Leaves from the Editor’s Note-Book (Continued from page H i o f this wrap per)‘ Jerries,’ dressed up in ‘London Scottish 'dress and with Scottish caps on. They were approaching us from the rear, and as they neared us, and saw by the light made by the well lit up glare of the hedge that we were Englanders, shouted,‘ D on’t shoot ve air de London Schottish !We were surrounded by them in avery short space of time. W e fired rapidly at themas fast as they came on from both flanks, front and rear, with terrifying effect.” Morning brought a spectacle of vengeance after the night’s success :Imagine our horror on that morning, retiring past the remains of the farmhouse, when we saw one of the finest soldiers in our squadron hung crucified on the door of the farmyard. Such atrocities some people would not believe, but seeing is believing and that was not the only case during the war. U|OW was “House” played? It would seem that many who were there have forgotten its finer points. Envious tales are told of “bankers ”who made small private fortunes out of the game, and the odd numerical terminology it employed has remained in everyone’s memory. "*The game was referred tom Major Franklin Lushington’s chapter,“ A Gunner at Festubert,” Part 10 and Mr. D. L. Waugh (Coleshill, near Birmingham) believes that the author has confused “House ”with “Pontoon.” Here are Mr. Waugh’s directions for playing “House”:“ A card was handed to each participant, for which he paid a penny, and it bore a number of lines of figures in squares, each card differing. A man then produced from a bag, atone a time, small circular wooden blocks bearing a number, which was called out. On hearing the number the players placed a bit of match-stick or small pebble over that number if it appeared on his card. Immediately he had covered a complete line of figures, a player would call (shout rather), ‘House— on top line,’ or whichever line he had covered. He was the winner for that round, and would receive his winnings, which consisted of the whole of the amount paid for the cards less twopence in the shilling, which was retained by the owner of the cards and blocks ”Hi 8 i**.II !**!!J#**!ill *ft !ann «¦it i i i it |HIS, my correspondent believes, was the only game permitted by the Authorities, and there were several variations of it. “House ”numbers are explained thus: Clicketty Click ’was used as easier to say than sixty-six. ‘Number seven was so-called to distinguish it from ‘Legs *eleven‘ K elly’s Eye ’was number one 'Number nine, or ‘medicine and duty was called to distinguish it from five *Top of the house was 99— there were 99 blocks used. Connaught Rangers ’was 88— the 88th Foot, and various othei regiments’ names were called and one needed to know that each was the —Foot.’ Mr. Waugh adds that “old sweats in the branch of the bank where he works often find it convenient to use these “number names ”for accurate dictation. |twas to be expected that Gallipoli would bring in a great quantity of correspondence. Indeed, letters about it began to arrive long before the Parts devoted to Gallipoli were in my readers' hands. The evacuation of the British position is the subject of Mr.S. W. Blythman's letter. Mr. Blythman was a guide at both Suvla Bay and Cape Helles, and writes: I led my battalion off at the evacuation. After Leaving Suvla Bay. we went toM udros. thereFrom we went back to Cape Helles. One officer, myself and one man were in charge of a post Yin‘ ’gully, at the junction of Eskie Lines. M y officer checked the troops out of the online the final night After they had al1 passed we went behind them” T W OR.E.s closed the barbed wire gap across the Gully, and the troops proceeded to the beach :"When we arrived therein the darkness, a voice came from out at sea telling us they could not take us off, the landing-place having been smashed soup we had to proceed round the cliffs to the end of Cape Helles. There were not many of us, but I can bet the majority did not feel any too bright. But we got a jerk on, and a voice met us in the darkness with, ‘For God's sake, get a move on :it will soon begetting light!’S owe were crowded into a lighter and taken to Imbros. The whoR.E.s closed the wire gap have a reunion in London. I believe there are six of them altogether.” Returning to his regiment at Mudros, Mr. Blythrrian was greeted by his Adjutant: “So you’ve arrived safe. You know, you were left behind so that the main body of troops eould begot away.” His guide’s pass was worded thus (he has it still) :“L /Cpl. Blythman and I Man have permission to proceed to the beach via LuLa Babu to ascertain route with view to acting as guides in future. (Signed) CAPT .PAR RY, 40th Bde. Divisional Headquarters. jffcNE of the last men in his sector to leave Gallipoli, Mr. Blythman’s story is interesting to compare with that of Mr. J. C. Fenton (Droylesden, Manchester), a survivor of one of the first units (Plymouth Div., Royal Marine Light Infantry) to inland the Dardanelles, and one of the youngest, ashe is now only 41. He is using the Old Com­rades’ Corner to trace the relatives of a Captain Tetley, who: “..............tried to stop me from landing, but I had togo :and on the 10th of May 1915 we went over the top with the cry ringing in our ears, *Good-bye. lads !’“We were sent out for snipers, but instead of snipers our platoon went straight into the Turks’ front-line trenches and got badly cutup. All the time Pte. Fenton was on the left of Capt. Tetley, who recommended him for the M.M .,and was afterwards killed Mr. made .on the 4th of March 1915— landing a company of Marines on either side of the Dardanelles and ihen taking us away to Pori Said for 10 days to reorganize the ships’ stores and then go back to the genera! landing in April, which gave the Turks plenty of time to have barbed wire and other obstacles to prevent operations being carried out.”? 0 ?i) 9 SB B 0 I I io recommended him tor the M.lvl., and was atterwards >/•led when he returned to the line from hospital in Malta. r. Fenton thinks the real blunder of the Dardanelles was ide: Aft e ran interval of some weeks, Gunner Darbyshire and his gun team reappear in my correspondence. Yet another member of the team, Mr. Harry Nunn of Carlisle, adds further points of information to the letter I quoted (in Part 10) from Driver Mansfield:“‘ Tich,’ my Gun Wheel Driver— I thought he was dead. The last time I saw him he was sitting on one inside the ambulance— said he was having a ride to Berlin. I know he got captured afterwards.” Gunner Darbyshire, Mr. Nunn recalls, joined them from“ H ”Battery on mobilization from Trowbridge : “ Darbyshire and Osborne got a French Medal for their bit of stuff, and Darby got the stripe when we came to England St.and John’s Wood. Osborne was sent back to France from the Wood, and I never heard anymore about him. The Battery‘ L l$ft the Wood again for Gallipoli on March 16,1915, and were in the Landing. Darby thought so much of his French Medal he carried it about in his pocket. Sergeant Scarsbrook was N o 1 of our Gun, Darby No. 2, and I was Gun Layer. Scarsbrook was killed outright and Darby was badly wounded and died ashe was put on shipboard but our C.O .got permission to have him buried onshore [Gallipoli]. muS f t u 4 J. ««Printed in England and published every Tuesday by the Proprietors. The A m a lg a mated Press ,Ltd .,The Fleetwav House, Farringdon Street London E.C.4. Sole Agents for Australia and New Zealand :Messrs. Gordon and Gotch, Ltd :and for South Africa :Central News Agency, Ltd' Subscription Rates Inland and Abroad n d per copy April 4th. 1939.
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