Status: Indexed

War Diary – April Appendix

Battle Reports sent in
Capt T.W. MacDowell D.C.C. 60

Dugout approximately
Junction of CYRUS and CLUTCH
8 a.m. 9.4.17

C.C. 38th Battalion

Objective reached but I am afraid is not fully
consolidated. The mud is very bad and our machine guns are filled
with mud. I have about 15 men near here and can see others
around and am getting them in hand slowly. Could “D” Company come
up in support if they have stopped in the front line. The
runner with your message for “A” Company has just come in and
says he cannot find any of “A” Coy. officers. I don’t know where
my officers and men are but I am getting them together. There is
not an N.C.O. here I have one machine gunner here but he has lost
his cocking piece off the gun and the gun is covered with mud.

The men’s riffles are a mass of mud and they are cleaning them.
My three runners and I came to what I had selected previously as
my Company Headquarters. We chucked a few bombs down and then came
down. The dug out is 75 feet down and is very large. We explored it
and sent out 75 prisoners and two Officers. This is not exaggerated
as I counted them myself. We had to send them out in batches
of 12 so they would not see how few we were. I am afraid a
few of them got back as I caught one man shooting one of our men
after he had given himself up. He did not last long, and I am
afraid we could not take any back except a few who were good to dgers
as the men chased them back with rifle shots. The dug out is
a very large one and will hold a couple of hundred. The men were
11th Regiment R.I.R. I cannot give an estimate of our casualties
but believe they are severe. Will send one back as soon as
possible. There is a field of fire of 400 yards or more and if
there were a couple of Brigade Machine Guns we could keep them
back easily as the ground is almost impassable – horrible mess.
There are lots of dead Bosche, and he evidently help well. I
can see 72nd men on our left. The 78th have gone through after
we reached here. The barrage was good, but men did not keep close
to it enough and held back. There are no shovels here found yet
so we will just get our rifles ready. No wire is here and cannot
spare men to send out. The line is obliterated. Nothing but shell
holes, so wire would not be of much use. Men are pretty well
under at present. There are no artillery officers here. His
fire is very weak and suppose he is going back. This is
all I can think of at present. Please excuse writing.

(Signed) T. W. MacDowell, Captain
38th Battalion

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