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The Huttig news. (Huttig, Ark.) 1907-1955, April 13, 1918, Image 3

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89051318/1918-04-13/ed-1/seq-3/

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AN rnmcrn SOLDER
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MACHINE GUNNER,DRYING IN FRANCE:
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SYNOPSIS.
CHAPTER I—Filed by the news of the
sinking of the 1-usitania bv a German
submarine, Arthur Guy Enipey, an Ameri
can, leaves Ills office in Jersey City and
goes to England where he enlists in the
British army.
'CHAPTER II—After a period of train
ing, Enipey volunteers for immediate serv
ice and soon finds himself in rest billets
"somewhere in France," where he first
makes the acquaintance of the ever-pres
ent "cooties."
CHAPTER III—Empev attends his first
church services at the front while a Ger
man Fokker circles over the congregation.
CHAPTER IV—Empey’s command goes
Into the front-line trenches and is under
fire for the first time.
CHAPTER V—Empey learns to adopt
the motto of the Brtlsh Tommy, "If you
are going to get it, you’ll get it, so never
worrv.”
t?WAPTKR VT-Baok In rest billets, Em
pey gets his first experience as a mess
orderly.
CHAPTER VII—Empey learns how the
British soldiers are fed.
CHAPTER VIII—Back in the front-line
trench, Empey sees ids first friend of the
trenches “go West.
"dlAPTETt IX—Empey makes his first
visit to a dugout in "Suicide Ditch.”
CHAPTER X—Empey learns what con
stitutes a "day's work” In the front-line
trench.
CHAPTER XI—Empey goes "ever the
top" for the first time in a charge on the
German trenches and is wounded by a
havnnat thrust.
CHAPTER XII
ss
Bombing.
The boys In the section welcomed me
back, but there were many strange
faces. Several of our men had gone
West in that charge, and were lying
“somewhere in France” with a little
wooden cross at their heads. We were
Throwing Hand Grenades.
in rest billots. Tin- next day our cap
lain asked for volunteers for bombers'
school. I gave my name and was ac
cepted. I had joined the Suicide club,
and my troubles commenced. Thirty
two men of the battalion, including my
self, were sent to I--, where we
vent through a course In bombing.
Here we were instructed in the uses,
methods of throwing and manufacture
of various kinds of hand grenades,
from the old “jam tin," now obsolete,
lo the present Mills bomb, the standurd
Of the British army.
It all depends where you are ns to
■what you are called. In France they
call you a “bomber” and give you med
tiIs, while in neutral countries they
call you an anarchist and give you
“life."
From the very start the Germans
were well equipped with effective
bombs and trained bomb throwers, but
the English army was as little pre
pared in this Important department of
fighting as in many others. At bomb
ing school an old sergeant of the Gren
adier guards, whom I had the good
fortune to meet, told me of the discour
agements this branch of the service
suffered before they could meet the
Germans on an equal footing. (Paci
fists and small army people in the
U. S. please read with care.) The first
English expeditionary forces had no
bombs at all, but had clicked a lot of
casualties from those thrown by the
Bodies. One bright morning someone
higher up had an idea and issued an
order detailing tvv men from each
platoon to go to bombing school to
learn the duties of a bomber and how
to monufactu;e bombs. Noncommis
sioned officers w.-e generally selected
for this course. After about two
weeks at school they returned to their
'units in red billets or in the fire
trench, as the case might he, and got
busy teaching their platoons liow to
make “jam tins."
Previously ail order had been issued
for nil ranks to save empty Jam Has
for the manufacture of bombs. A pro
fessor of bombing would sit on the
lire step In the front trench with the
remainder of his section crowding
around to see him work.
On his left would be a pile of cinpl.v
and rusty jam tins, while beside him
on the fire slop would lie n ml seelin'- I
neous assortment of material used in
the manufacture of the “jam tins.”
Tommy would stoop down. get an
empty “Jam tin,” take a handful of
clayey mud from the parapet, and line
the Inside of the tin with this suh- ;
stance. Then he would reach over,
pick up his detonator and explosive. j
and Insert them in the tin, fuse pro- i
trading. On the fire step would be a
pile of fragments of shell, shrapnel i
balls, hits of iron, nails, etc.—anything I
that was hard enough to send over to
Fritz; he would scoop up a handful of
this Junk and put it in*he bomb. I*br- ;
haps one of the platoon would ask him
what he did this for, and he would
expialn that when the bomb exploded
these bits would fly about and kill or
wound any German hit by same; the
questioner would immediately pull a
button off his tunic and hand it to
the bomb maker with, “Well, blame
me. send this over ns a souvenir,” or
another Tommy would volunteer an
old rusty and broken jackknife; both
would be accepted and inserted.
Then the professor would take an
other handful of«mud and fill the tin.
after which he would punch a hole in
the lid of the tin and put it over the
top of the bomb, the fuse sticking out.
Then perhaps he would tightly wrap
wire around the outside of the tin. and
the bomb was ready to send over to
Fritz with Tommy’s compliments.
A piece of wood about four inches
wide lmd been issued. This was to be
strapped on the left forearm by means
of two leather straps and was like the .
side of a match box; it was railed n :
"striker.” There was a tip like the
head of a match on the fuse of the
bomb. To ignite the fuse, you had to
rub it on the "striker,” just the same
as striking a match. The fuse was
timed to five seconds or longer. Somo^
of the fuses issued in those days would
burn down In a second or two, while
others would “sizz" for a week before
j exploding. Back in Blighty the munl
j tion workers weren't quite up to snttfT.
| the way they are now. If the fuse took
j a notion to burn too quickly they gen
| erall.v buried the bomb maker next
day. So making bombs could not be
called a "cushy” or safe job.
After making several bombs the pro
fessor instructs the platoon in throw
ing them. He takes a “jam tin” front
the fire, step, trembling a little, be
cause It is nervous work, especially
when new nt it, lights the fuse on ltis
striker. The fuse begins to "sizz” and
sputter and a spiral of smoke, like
that from a smoldering fag. rises from
it. The platoon splits in two and
ducks around the traverse nearest to
them. They don’t like the looks and
sound of the burning fust*. When that
fuse begins to smoke and “sizz” you
want to say good-by to it ns soon a*
possible, so Tommy with ail his might
chucks It over the top and crouches
against the parapet, wafting for the
explosion.
Lots of times In bombing the "jam
tin" would be picked up by the Ber
mans, before It exploded, and thrown
back at Tommy with dire results.
After a lot of men went West in this
manner an order was issued, reading
something like this:
“To all ranks in the British army:
After igniting the fuse and before
throwing the jam-tin bomb, count
slowly one ! two ! three !”
This in order to give the fuse time
enough to burn down, so that the bomb
would explode before the Germans
could throw it back.
Tommy read the order—he reads
them all, hut after he ignited the fuse
and It began to smoke—orders were
forgotten, and away she went in record
tt'.iie ancl hack she came to the further
.•.Iscomfort of the thrower.
Then another order was issued to
count, “one hundred! two hundred!
three hundred!” Hut Tommy didn’t
we If the order read to count 'ip to
t thousand by quarters, he was going
to get rid of that “Jam tin,” because
from experience he had learned not
to trust it.
When the powers that lie realized
that they could not change Tommy
they decided to change the type of
bomb and did so—substituting the
“hair brush,” the “cricket ball,” and
later the Mills homb.
The standard bomb used in the Brit
ish army is the “Mills.” It is about the
shape and size of a large lemon. Al
though not actually a lemon, Fritz In
sists that it is; perhaps he judges it
I by the havoc caused by its explosion.
I The Mills bomb is made of steel, the
outside of which is corrugated into 48
small squares, which, upon the explo
sion of the homb, scatter In a wide
area, wounding or killing any Fritz
who is unfortunate enough to be hit
by one of the flying fragments.
Although a very destructive and ef
ficient bomb the “Mills” has the con
S fldenee of the thrower, in that lie
knows it will not explode until re
leased from his grip.
It is a mechanical device, witli a
lever, fitted InTb a slot at the lop,
which ex I ends half way around the
circumference and is held in place at
the bottom hv a fixing pin. In this [.in
there is a small metal ring. for the
purpose of extracting the pin when
ready to throw.
You do not throw a bomb the way a
baseball Is thrown, because, when in
a narrow tr»nch, your hand is liable
to strike against the parados, traverse
or parapet, and then down goes the
honib. and, in a couple of seeonds or
so, up goes Tommy,
In throwing, the bomb and lever arc
grasped ill the right band, the left foot
is advanced, knee stiff, about one and
a half its length to the front, while
the right leg, knee bent, is carried
slightly to the right. The left arm is
extended nt an angle of 45 degrees,
pointing ifi the direction the bomb is to
be thrown. This position is similar
to that of shot putting, only that the
right arm is extended downward. Then
you hurl 1he hotnh from you with an
overhead bowling motion, the same ns
in cricket, throwing it fairly high in
the air. this In order to give the fuse
a chance to burn down so that when
the bomb lands, it immediately ex
plodes and gives the Germans no time
to scamper out of its range or to re
turn it.
As the bomb leaves your hand, the
lever, by means of a spring, is projected
into Die a ip and fulls harmlessly to
the ground a few feet in front of the
bomber.
When tlio lover flies of? it releases
a strong spring, which forces the firing
pin into a percussion cap. This ignites
tin- fuse, which burns down and sets
<*ff the detonator, charged with fulmi
nate of mercury, which explodes the
main charge of ammonal.
The average British soldier is not an
export at throwing; it is a new game
to him, therefore the Canadians and
Americans, who have played baseball
from the kindergarten up, take natu
rally to bomb throwing and excel in
this act. A six-foot English bomber
will stand in awed silence when he
sees a little tive-foot-nothing Canadian
outdistance his throw by several yards.
I have read a few war stories of bomb
ing, where baseball pitchers curved
their bombs when throwing them, hut
a% pitcher who can do this would make
"Christy” Mathewson look like a piker,
and is losing valuable time playing In
the European War bush league, when
he would he aide to set the “big
league” on fire.
We had a cushy time while at this
school. In fact, to us it was a regular
vacation, and we were very sorry when
one morning the adjutant ordered us
to report at headquarters for trans
portation and rations to return to our
units tip the line.
Arriving at our section, the boys
once again tendered us the glnd mitt,
bur looked askance at us out of the
corners of their eyes. They could not
conceive, ns they expressed it, how a
man could he such a blinking Idiot as
pi join the Suicide club. I was begin
ning to feel sorry that I had become
a member of said club, and my life to
me appeared doubly precious.
Now that I was a sure-enough
bomber I was praying for peace and
hoping that my services as such would
not he required.
CHAPTER XIII.
My First Official Bath.
Right behind our rest billet was a
large creek about ten feet deep and
twenty feet across, and it was a habit
of the company to avail themselves of
an opportunity to take n swim and at
the same time thoroughly wash them
selves and their underwear when on
their own. We were having a spell of
hot weather, and these baths to us
were a luxury. The Tommies would
splash around in the water and then
come out and sit in the sun and have
what they termed a “shirt hunt.” At
first we tried to drown the “cooties,”
but they also seemed to enjoy the bath.
One Sunday morning the whole sec
tion was in the creek and we were hav
ing a gay time, when the sergeant ma
jor appeared on the scene, lie came
to the edge of the creek and ordered:
“Come out of it. Get your equipment
on. ‘drill order,’ and full in for bath
parade. Look lively, my hearties. You
have only got fifteen minutes.” A howl
of indignation from the creek greeted
this order, but out we came. Disci
pline is discipline. We lined up in
front of our billet with rifles and bay
onets (why you need rifles and bayo
nets to take a bath gets me), a full
quota of ammunition, and our tin hats.
Kneh man had a piece of soap and it
towel. After an eight-kilo march along
o dusty road, with an occasional shell
whistling overhead, we arrived at a
little squat frame building upon the
bank of a creek. Nailed over the door
I of this building was a large sign which
: read “Divisional Baths.” In a wooden
I shed in rlie rear we could hear a
wheezy old engine pumping water.
We lined up In front of the baths,
soaked with perspiration, and piled
| our Titles into stacks. A sergeant of
the It. A. M. C. with a yellow bund
| around his left arm on which was
j “S. l\” (sanitary police) in black let
lers, took charge, ordering ns to take
off our equipment, unroll our puttees
and unlace boots. Then, starting from
, the right of the line, he divided us
into squads of fifteen. 1 happened to
be in the first squad.
We entered a small room, where we
were given five minutes to undress,
then filed into the bathroom. In here
there were fifteen tubs (barrels sawed
In two) half full of water. Each tub
! contained a piece if hiundry soap. The
sergeant informed us that we had just
! twelve minutes In which to take our
baths. Sonirtng ourselves all over, we
j took turns In rubhiug each other’s
backs, then by means of a garden h‘>se1
A Bathroom at the Front.
tvushefl the soap off. "’The water was
ice cold, but felt tine.
Pretty soon a bell rang and the wa
ter was turned off. Some of the slower
ones were covered with soap, but this
made no difference to the sergeant,
who chased us into another room,
: where we lined up in front of a little
window, resembling the box office in a
theater, and received clean underwear
and towels. From here we went into
the room where we had first undressed.
Ten minutes were allowed In which to
get into our "clabber.”
My pair of drawers came up to my
chin and the shirt barely reached my
diaphragm, but they were cleun—no
strangers on them, so I was satisfied.
At the expiration of the time allot
ted we were turned out and finished
our dressing on the grass.
When all of the company hud bathed
It was a case of march back to billets.
That march was the most uncongenial'
one imagined, just cussing and blind
ing all the way. We were covered with
white dust and felt greasy from sweat.
The woolen underwear issued was
itching like the mischief.
After eating our dinner of stew,
which had been kept for us—it was
now four o'clock—we went Into the
creek and had another bath.
If “Holy Joe” could have heard our
remarks about the divisional baths
and array red tape he would have
fainted at our wickedness. But Tom
my is only human nfter all.,
I just mentioned “Holy Joe” or the
chaplain in an irreverent sort of way,
but no offense was meant, as there
were some very brave men among
them.
There are so many instances of he
roic deeds performed under fire in res
cuing file wounded that it would take
several hooks to chronicle them, hut I
have to mention one instance per
formed by a chaplain. Captain Hall by
name, in the brigade on our left, be
cause it particularly appealed to me.
A chaplain is not a fighting man; he
's recognized as a noncombatant and
carries no arms. In a charge or trench
raid the soldier gets a feeling of con
fidence from contact with ids rifle, re
volver, or bomb he is carrying, lie has
something to protect himself with,
something with which he can inflict
harm on the enemy—in other words,
he is able to get his own back.
But the chaplain is empty-handed,
and is at the mercy of the enemy if
I he encounters them, so it Is doubly
brave for bint to go over the top, under
Are, and bring in wounded. Also a
I chaplain is not required by the king’s
regulations to go over in a charge, but
tliis one did, made three trips under
the hottest kind of lire, each time re
turning with a wounded man on his
i back. On the third trip lie received
, a bullet through his left arm, but never
reported the matter to the doctor until
'ate that night—just spent ids time ad
ministering to the wants of the wound
ed lying on stretchers.
The chaplains of tile British army
are a fine, manly set of men, and arc
1 greatly respected by Tommy.
(Continued Next Week.)
GEllilH TESTS
SDE OF SEED CORD
TWO-THIRDS OF SAMPLES TEST
ED SHOW 95 PER CENT-OR
BETTER.
By E. W. Osborn, Agricultural Exper
iment Station, U. of A. Fayetteville.
Germination tests made of Arkansan
seed corn indicate that the seed situa
tion in this state is much more favor
able than in Northern com-belt States.
Tests were made by the Agricultum!
Experiment Station of the University
of Arkansas under the direction of
Mr. L. \V. Osborn with over one hun
dred samples sent in by county agents
and farmers from about 40 counties
of the state. While the percentage of
germination of these samples varies
from f>6 to 100 per cent, the average
of all samples sent in was 94 per cent.
Two-thirds of the samples sent in test
ed 95 per cent or better, 88 per cent
of the samples tested 90 per cent or
lietter, six per cent ranged between
80 and 90 per cent and five per cent
belov 80 per cent.
“There is danger that late planted
corn, and corn in general which ma
tured late, may have an impaired ger
mination due to the fact that the early
freeze of last fall may have caught
the crop before it was fully ina'ureil
or when It was full of moisture,” says
Mr. Osborn. “In Arkansas, com
planted at the usual time in early
spring matures In August or Septem
ber. and ordinarily is well dried out
before severe freezes take place. Well
dried mature corn will withstand very
low temperatures without seriously af
fecting the vitality. Of course, there
Is always the danger that even com
pletely dried com may absorb moist
ure if exposed during damp weather
in winter .and that subsequent freezes
may lower its vitality. Corn which
has been stored when thoroughly dry
in a fairly close crib will usually re
tain its vitality and make dependable
seed. Corn stored damp Is likely to
have Its germination lowered.
Test Corn To Be Sure of Quality.
“Ordinarily very little attention is
given to testing seed corn in this
state. The extreme cold of the past
winter, however, is sufliclent reason to
Justify making tests to determine the
quality of the seed to be planted. A
good index of the ability of seed corn
to germinate may be obtained by the
following method: Choose 100 ears at
random and remove three kernels
from each at different part* of the
ear, as the butt, tip and middle. Mix
the kernels to make a composite sam
ple.
How To Make a Germlnator.
"A cflod germinator is made by ns
Ing two pie tins or dinner plates. FI 11
one with sand, sawdust, or soil. Place
a clean cloth on this and spread the
kernels out to be germinated. Place
a second cloth over the seeds and
wet down. Then invert the second pie
tin or dinner plate over the tirst so
as to make a moist chamber within.
Keep moist in a warm place.
"Six days Is a sufficient time to al
low tor germination. Seed germinating
ini to 93 per cent may be considered
fair. *4 97 good, and 98-100 excellent.
Because of the shortage of farm labor
it is of greatest importance that seed
having a high germination, 95 per
cent, be used to avoid the necessity
of thick planting and subsequent thin
ninz With seed germinating 90 per
cent or less, ii would seem best either
to make an individual ear test or to
obialn new seed having a higher ger
mination.”
Lord Mayor's Banquet.
What a lord mayor’s banquet was
like up to the seventeenth eentury
may be guessed from Dekker's de
scription of one In “The Shoemaker's
Holiday,” where the chief guest was
Henry V. After being told thut a
hundred tables were filled and to be
rettlled with beef, pork, mutton, minced
pies and marchpane, one reads that
“venison pasties walk up and down
piping hot, like sergeants; beef and
brewess comes marching in dry-vats;
fritters and pancakes comes trowling
in the wheelbarrows; hens and sau
sages hopping in porters’ baskets, col
lops and eggs In scuttles, und tarts
and custards comes quavering in In
nuilt-ssbovels.” -.«». „ .w ^y,, I
- v- — -—"
FARMERS INVEST
IN LISERTYBONIS
AND SAVE NATION
BACK UP YOUR BOY IN TRENCH
ES BY LOANING UNCLE
SAM MON-Y.
HIT A BLOW FOR FREEDOM
Future of America Oepends on Men
Who Till Soil—Put Your Sav
ings in the Safest
Place In World.
This is a patriotic appeal to farm
ers. Your sons have gone to France
lo fight freedom’s battles. Uut it has
not been brought home to you that It
is the duty of those who remain at
home to support the government and
thereby back up the soldiers in the
trenches with every dollar you can
spare. Your duty does not end when
you Increase production so the fight
ing men may be fed.
Unless every American cltlsen does
his patriotic duty in purchasing Lib
erty Bonds Uncle Sam cannot, clothe,
feed, equip and maintain the army in
the field. One the of strongest argu
ments advanced in defending the
farmer for not having bought Liberty
Bonds more heavily in the firsl two
issues is that he was doing for bis
country more than his share in invest
ing money in the effort to increa«e
production than could have been done
in lending the money to the govern
ment.
The argument is good in so far as
it goes, but it does not go far enough.
The farmer ia not the only producer
who is helping the nation by speeding
up production. Every manufacturer
who contributes to the vast array of
supplies necessary for the comfort,
health and success of the men in the
trenches fighting the most cruel and
heartless foe Civilisation ever faced
might make the same claim. And if
it was allowed what would become of
the Liberty Loan?
Why have many farmer* not yet
invented in Liberty Bonds so freely as
others? Because, owing to the coro
| partitive isolation of farm life, they
have not canght the patriotic infec
• ion which leads, others. In city and
town, to put theictaat cent into bonds
and to buy them on credit at the
hanks and pay for them out of their
savings. Such persons must -under
stand that Uncle Sam Is calling for
I help. The government appeals for a
loan from the fanner and all other
patriotic cltisens.
Lives will be saved by svery dollar
a farmer invests in a Liberty Bond.
The war will be shortened and dis
aster will be rendered Impossible. No
class of American eltlsena has a more
glorious page In the history of Amer
ica than the man who' tlUg the soli.
Once he Is aroused to the-dire need
of the country he wJU Invest every
spare dollar in Liber ty'B*»ds.
No class of citizens Is more inter
ested in the outcome of the war than
are farmers. Farming cannot be car
ried on with the ocean closed to com
mer e. The highways of the sea must
be safe or the farmer cannot satei;.
engage in growing his crops and rais
ing stock. Thera are enough retired
farmers enjoying from their lands an
nual incomes smaller than they would
receive If they would Invest In Lib
erty Bonds.
Farmers, do you know that |10,000
invested in Liberty Bonds will pay
the owner a better return for his
money than if he invested It la farm
lands sad rented, the lands? Do you
know that the booddwner may bor
row more freely on them at the banks
than he can upon lands? Do you know
'.hat no investment can compare in
security and safely with governmeh'
bonds?
The cause of freedom needs every
cent that farmers can raise to send
the soldiers to France equipped, fed.
protected, to destroy Prussian mili
tarism, break tbc power of I he saber
rattlers of Po’sdani and bring peace
lo the world.
When it comes to duty the farmer
mint stand shoulder to shoulder with
his fellows. The fate of the nation is
at stake. The future of civilisation
hangs iu the balance. Arouse, farmers
of America, and strike a mighty blow
for liberty, for justice, for freedom
and for peace.
AMERICA WILL SETTLE
PRESENT WORLD'S WAR
Liberty Lean Bend In American
Hands la Moat Effective
'Weapon.
Before the United States entijed
the war the conflict may 'bare hfeeii
one for Europeans to settle, with fh*
future of the world depending rfpon
the results. But since America de
clared war it hae become distinctly
our war.
It no longer is England'* war, ar
France’s war, but America's war—the
war of all the melons associated to de
feat German autocracy, which seeks
to dominate and enslave the world.
The best way to support the war is
to buy a Liberty Bond while the brave
boys are at the front fighting for you
and for your home and for evarytblag
i sacred.
noiaMiai w
Put cn the Pt'vo Classes v.:? . a you set the
table for the bile you’ve prrpar d for t'r pues's of
the evening. /s a suggestion for a dah’ty lunch:
Crerm cheese ar.d rh. pned olive smdtvich :s foil
Uuwn bread.., lhiil pi ■ x Ehriinp salat’, Ire Cold
litL Vo.
Itself r dtil-ve c h.lr, Drvo makes cr. apr-?t&ng
: :iq i light. .1 addition to miy aicr-i- hot ci cold,
light or heavy.
l;evo he ai *•* r-’rou nd soft drink.
£,,./d tn betting c d Lo'fittd t*Ai lusivdy Ly
/.ivi’.itjl! St. Louis

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