Sunday, November 8, 1914

Camp Salisbury Plain, West Down South

The Battalion War Diarist wrote for this day: “Duty Battalion.”  [1]

08 Nov 14
Washing clothes – Salisbury

THIS DAY IN RMR HISTORY:  Writing earlier in the week, the London correspondent of The Globe reported: – “The task of unloading the troop ships and transporting the Canadian Soldiers and stores to Salisbury Plain has practically been completed, and the men are already settling down to the hard work of training preparatory to their dispatch to the fields of war. Great as was the camp at Valcartier, it is not to be compared to Salisbury, where, in addition to over thirty thousand troops from Canada, there are no less than two hundred thousand British troops, and there is room for thousands more.  The Canadian contingent is quartered in four different camps, divisional headquarters being at Bustard, which is about five miles from Amesbury railway station, while the rest of the Canadian troops are chiefly at West Down North, West Down South and Pond Farm, all of which are several miles apart. While having many advantages, the character of the Salisbury country is such that it does not offer the same opportunity for tactical schemes as might be wished.  While there are some hills, the land for the most part is flat, and it would be possible to see a body of troops from a great distance.”  [3]

[1] War Diary, 14th Canadian Battalion, The Royal Montreal Regiment, Nov 8, 1914.  Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa, http://data2.collectionscanada.ca/e/e044/e001089676.jpg
[2]  Canadian War Museum Photo Archives 52K 13, # 19790262-020

[3]   William Marchington, “SETTLING TO WORK ON SALISBURY PLAIN: Canadians Alongside 200,000 British Soldiers GEN. ALDERSON POPULAR Puts Men on Their Honor for Good Behavior--A Healthy Lot of Men--Col. Williams May be Camp Commandant--Three Fatalities.” The Globe (1844-1936), Toronto, Ontario, Wednesday, November 4, 1914, pg. 3, col. 1.


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