Witley, May 11, 1917

Friday    Weather is simply great today, the crops & fruit trees are showing good signs, This morning we went throu [sic] gas, tear & poison it was certainly a sensation. The papers don’t speak good of Russia

Gas Chamber Varley.jpg

Going through gas warranted a second note at the back of Percy’s diary:

In ref: to the gas we took on May 11.17 the tear gas was fierce only 2 teaspoonsful allowed to escape in a confined room this we took unmasked, it gave us intense pain in the eyes & they flowed with tears like a tap[.] when getting in the clear air the effect soon passed off  The poison-gas we took — walking thru trenches with gas masks on all we could do was slightly smell it otherwise it had no effect on us

The 1918 painting by Canadian war artist Frederick Varley is entitled “Gas Chamber at Seaford.” A training camp was located near Seaford on the Sussex coast. The painting  (CWM19710261-0772) is in the Beaverbrook  Collection of War Art in the Canadian War Museum.

Copyright 2017. See “More about this project.”

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