1918 ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT DIARY HANDWRITTEN BY AN INJURED BRITISH OFFICER NOW IN COMMAND OF THE HOME SERVICE EMPLOYMENT CORPS

By: C.H. MCCALLUM

Price: $2,595.99

Quantity: 1 available

Book Condition: Very Good


On offer is an excellent, well filled, original 1918 World War I manuscript diary handwritten by British Army Officer C.H. McCallum [while not specified directly in the book other related items in the original archive clearly identify the author] who, we learn from his service record in the diary spent the whole of 1918 in Britain where he was in command of the 568th HSE, Home Service Employment Company, part of the Labour Corps, at Bettisfield Park Camp in Flintshire (although the diarist himself records Bettisfield as being in Shropshire). We also learn that he was on active service in France and Belgium during 1916 and 1917, including a period with the Border Regiment on the Somme. McCallum writes of having been invalided back from France and as was often the case with injured men he was seconded to the HSE as a result of injuries sustained while on active service. We note a particularly interesting historic anomaly being that a number of the entries in the diary refer to German prisoners of war on camp and the diary does sometimes read as though it was the diarist's responsibility to manage these men. Thusly we believe the HSE Company was used to provide guards at Bettisfield. This would be an interesting fact given most research sources describe Bettisfield Park as a base for the No 2 Reserve Brigade of the Royal Field Artillery. We cannot find any historical record of prisoners of war at Bettisfield. McCallum does a super job as a diarist writing an entry for every day of the year, many quite detailed and lengthy, detailing day-to-day life in the camp and there are plenty of insights into the life of a home-based officer, including references to comings and goings among his fellow officers, courts martial, logistical matters and so on all well mixed with the minutiae of his private life: particularly his wife, Nancy, and a new baby who live at Byfield in Northamptonshire. He follows military events closely in the press and frequently makes observations about the progress of the war. Of course, this being 1918, the diary does include Armistice Day, which he marks with a low key entry, one that was perhaps characteristic of serving soldiers. He is pleased the war is over but seems quite low key, perhaps fatigued with the War: 'A Great Day. Mons occupied by the British at dawn. Armistice signed 5 a.m. Fighting ceased at 11 a.m. The bells rang in the evening and people put out flags. Went into WIH's (?) and drank a bottle of beer!' Overall VG.[We note that we also have McCallum's 1929 India Service diary which he wrote as he assumed command of the 2nd Battalion Highland Light Infantry. Item #0001924.]

Title: 1918 ORIGINAL MANUSCRIPT DIARY HANDWRITTEN BY AN INJURED BRITISH OFFICER NOW IN COMMAND OF THE HOME SERVICE EMPLOYMENT CORPS

Author Name: C.H. MCCALLUM

Categories: Books and Manuscripts General Overview, 20th Century Diary, 20th Century Manuscript,

Publisher: BETTISFIELD PARK CAMP SHROPSHIRE ENGLAND, 1918

Book Condition: Very Good

Type: Manuscript

Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall

Seller ID: 0001919

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