Monday, November 9, 1914

Camp Salisbury Plain, West Down South

The Battalion War Diarist wrote for this day: “Training.  Battalion on outpost work at night.”  [1]

THIS DAY IN RMR HISTORY – NIGHT TRAINING“Several night outpost schemes formed part of the battalion’s work in November, some friction resulting one night when a defending force held up a number of civilian motor cars, and some amusement on another occasion when a nervous sentry ordered an enemy party to advance and give the “Concordia,” his side afterwards wondering how the enemy had learned the password and penetrated the defending lines.”  [2]

PRESS REPORTINGIt is worth noting that while several Canadian Newspapers had their own correspondents with the Canadian Contingent on Salisbury Plains, the reports of these correspondents frequently reached their respective newspapers about ten days, or more, after the report was written.  This is probably attributable to the fact that for security reasons they could not send their reports by cable, and had to rely on surface mail via steam ship.  Hence the delay between the date the report was written in England, and the date it was published in Canada.  An example would be the following report.

LEAVE“Salisbury Plain, England, October 26.  As is well known, a very large number of the Canadian Contingent are men of British origin, and much to the delight of the soldiers, they are receiving three days leave of absence.  Twenty percent of the men of the various units are given leave simultaneously, and when these return a further twenty percent get off, and this will be repeated until the whole camp has had its turn.  On Saturday last the trains out of Salisbury bore a large number of both officers and men, many of whom were on their way to Ireland and Scotland.”  [3]

[1] War Diary, 14th Canadian Battalion, The Royal Montreal Regiment, Nov 9, 1914.  Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa,
[2]  R.C. Featherstonhaugh, The Royal Montreal Regiment 14th Battalion C.E.F. 1914-1925, Montreal, The Gazette, Printing Co.,Ltd., 1927.
[3]   William Marchington, “Britain’s Arms Open For The Canadians,” The Globe (1844-1936), Toronto, Ontario, November 7, 1914, pg. 13.


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