Irishmen in the Great War
Reports From the Front 1915
Imprint: Pen and Sword Military
264 Pages, 6.1 x 9.1 in, 8 page plate section
- June 2022
- In Stock
- October 2015
- Out of print. Available in Digital Formats at the links below.
These are the accounts of local men at the front, letters sent home from soldiers in the trenches at Flanders, graphic narratives from allied gun turrets, Irish nuns at Ypres, Irish POWs held in Germany, troops coming under fire on Christmas morning and many more.
We are presented with articles explaining the logistical side of supporting the army, from how the men at the front were fed to combating ailments brought about by living in the trenches. A letter from a surgeon of the King's Country Infirmary explains the graphic experiences of everyday life on the front line and the newspapers present feature articles on the use of torpedoes, hand grenades, warplanes and more.
Translated German letters pay tribute to the courage, stamina and shooting skill shown by the British and letters from British troops remark on the deathly accuracy of the German snipers. We also hear of a Kilkennyman who survived the sinking of the Lusitania and how the attack strengthened the resolve of Irish soldiers on the front.
We see letters from lieutenants in the Leinsters, privates in the Munsters at Egypt, the Connaughts at Turkey, a fifteen-year-old soldier of the 18th London Irish Rifles, a Kilmoganny soldier writing to the Kilkenny People during a lull in the fighting, letters explaining how the 2nd Royal Irish Rifles fought at Neuve Chapelle and an officer's harrowing description of a gas attack at Hill 60.
Among the articles of bravery and death, there are also stories of humor and quirkiness, from a furious cyclist who was fined 10s for riding on the pavement to rousing trench songs and remedies to rid the body of lice.
"Featuring more than 150 stories published throughout 1915 in 26 Irish newspapers, this treasure trove of hand-picked news presents unique slices of life on the Front line and at home in Ireland during the First World War. From cheery soldiers' letters home to graphic accounts of fighting and harrowing descriptions of destruction and gas deaths, historian Tom Burnell has complied a selection of forgotten reports that shed new light on the experiences of Irish soldiers in WW1." ~Family Tree