Although several of the 4th Division’s artillery batteries crossed to the north side of the Aisne, there was such difficulty in finding fire positions that the GOC of the division expressed extreme reservations on any advance unless it was in co-ordination with similar advances to his left by General Manoury’s French 6th Army and the 5th Division to his right. 8th Brigade, heading the 3rd Division advance, encountered considerable German resistance in advancing on Vailly, the divisional artillery being subjected to heavy counter-battery fire, which in the case of 49th Battery forced the gunners to abandon their guns for a time, British RFA 18 pounder field gun and crew during the Battle of the Aisne, 10th to 13th September 1914 in the First World War. These cookies do not store any personal information. The two KRRC companies followed the Berks up on their flank, but neither regiment was able to make headway against the rows of German trenches dug into the side of the ridge, supported by heavy gunfire from well positioned field guns and heavy howitzers. A month later it was the scene of further desperate action when the British Expeditionary Force re-crossed it in their unsuccessful attempt to dislodge the German Army entrenched along the … I Corps: (Haig): 1st Division, Advance to the Aisne. Battle of Aisne, 1st 1914. Aerial reconnaissance showed that substantial German forces were moving east from Soissons, with the apparent intention of bolstering the troops opposing the BEF crossing of the Aisne. Moving casualties out required stretcher bearers to carry them to the south bank before they could be loaded onto ambulances. Further west 3rd Division of II Corps advanced on Vailly, where the Aisne River and Canal run closely in parallel, and 5th Division of II Corps tackled the crossing at Missy, 5 miles further west. 1st Battle of Aisne After the first battle at the Marnein September, 1914, the German Armywas able to deploy its forces along the north bank of the River Aisne, a tributary of the Oise. These include information on officers, regimental histories, letters, diary entries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War. Khan Academy 165,498 views Find many great new & used options and get the best deals for BATTLE ON AISNE 1914: BEF AND BIRTH OF WESTERN FRONT OF By Jerry Murland **NEW** at … It held the line from the Chemin des Dames east of Cerny (with the French on the right) down past Vendresse to Beaulne. Field Marshal Sir John French determined to continue the attack begun the previous day. 1914 Aisne - reserve. On the left of the 1st Division, the 2nd Division of the BEF’s I Corps was ordered to continue its attack on the German positions. After suffering heavily during their attack earlier in the day, 1st Camerons was forced to fall back, with other units of 1st Division, until the division established positions to the north of Troyon, where it fought off continuing German attacks until around 3pm when these attacks petered out. Here the battle raged back and forth for the rest of the day, with reinforcing units pushed into the line as and where they were needed. Presently the news comes that the Germans are in a quarry in the middle of our line, i.e that our line was pierced. Officers, British and French, of 5th Cavalry Brigade (photo by Captain Harry Baird, ADC to General Haig). On 13 September 1914 the lead elements of the British Expeditionary Force made an opposed crossing of  the River Aisne (and the Aisne canal which joins it at an angle), and reached the lower slopes below the German forces now digging in along the Chemin des Dames ridge. Account of the Battle of the Aisne, 10th to 13th September 1914: In an acknowledgement of the difficulty created for the British by the preponderance of heavy German artillery and the care with which it was positioned, French directed that the 60 pounders, the heaviest guns widely available to the BEF and significantly smaller than the Germans’ heavy howitzers, should seek out the German batteries in turn with their gunfire. And on that note, don’t be surprised if I find others that I missed, I still have a month to go before I’m caught up. There was then a 5 mile gap to the 8th and 9th Brigades at Vauxelles. This was frustrated by the additional entrenchments dug by the Germans and the heavy artillery bombardment put down by the Germans on the assaulting troops. Another mail arrives with several letters for me. The Germans had held the Chemin des Dames Ridge from the First Battle of the Aisne in September 1914 to 1917, when General Mangin captured it during the Second Battle of the Aisne (in the Nivelle Offensive). On the western flank of the BEF the 4th Division (III Corps) was ordered to attack north onto the plateau between Vregny and Crouy and push back the German artillery that was bombarding the French 6th Army troops operating in Soissons and relieve the pressure on the 5th Division to its east. I refused to spend another night sitting up and say so plainly. 3rd and 5th Cavalry Brigades with 7th Brigade around Braisne. 1st West Yorkshire Regiment in action at the Battle of the Aisne, 10th to 13th September 1914 in the First World War, The previous battle in the First World War is the Battle of the Marne, The next battle in the First World War is the Texel Action. On the brigade’s left flank, 1st KRRC was supported by 2nd Worcestershire and 2nd HLI, with gunfire from 46th and 113th Batteries RFA, and drove the Germans back after desperate fighting, inflicting heavy losses on the German infantry. Several Royal Dublin Fusiliers rejoined their battalion after escaping through German lines after the Battle of Le Cateau to Boulogne. Mons, The Retreat to Victory by John Terraine. This move took place during the first three weeks of October 1914. French’s orders for the 14th September were to continue the assault on the German positions. On 13 September 1914 the lead elements of the British Expeditionary Force made an opposed crossing of the River Aisne (and the Aisne canal which joins it at an angle), and reached the lower slopes below the German forces now digging in along the Chemin des Dames ridge. This was only achieved by around 4.30pm when it was found that the confusion of the units was so great that the attack had to be called off. History of the 2nd Division 1914-1918 Volume 1 by Wyrall The First Seven Divisions by Lord Ernest Hamilton. The wooded slopes make the Aisne today a pretty, gentle area that belies the horrors it witnesses in the Great War. Shrapnel and rifle fire fairly heavy. The 4th (Guards) Brigade was due to come up on the left of the division, but was delayed. British 60 pounder guns on the battlefield: Battle of the Aisne, 10th to 13th September 1914 in the First World War. 60-pounders on the Royal Garrison Artillery on the move (19th Brigade), 12 September 1914. One of the officers called up to us that he wished to speak to an officer, but after the episode at Landrecies with the Guards, we weren’t having any of that. The Allied pursuit had been slow, hampered by fatigue, stretched supply lines and German rearguard actions. The Battle of the Aisne was essentially over, giving way to the trench warfare in the area that would continue for several years. As we go we get some six shrapnels at us but mercifully are not touched. The horrors of attacking up the slopes of folds towards the Chemin des Dames ridge and then of determined German counter attacks typifies the Aisne of 1914. The Germans have destroyed most of the bridges and are shelling or trying to shell the ones they have left, hoping to catch us on them. German artillery fire forced the 2nd Cavalry Brigade to abandon its pursuit and fall back from the ridge. General Joffre, the French Commander-in-Chief, ordered the French 5th Army with General Conneau’s cavalry corps, positioned to the east of the BEF, to continue the advance beyond the Marne, and the French 6th Army, positioned to the north-west of the BEF, to continue its advance to the north-east. When we do move it is not for very long. The remaining divisional formations of artillery and other services were to follow the Guards, the heavy batteries crossing at Bourg. Killed Welby, Simonds, Coker, Sills and 86 men; wounded – Pritchard, James and Gwynn slightly, and 95 men; and missing 12. Divisional cavalry reported that the bridge at Chavonne was destroyed and covered by sniper fire. Apparently its replacement still bears that name. in September 1914. I Corps: (Haig): 1st and 2nd Divisions plus 18th Brigade attached from 6th Division The babtle of Aisne began on the 13th September 1914. The II Corps artillery positioned around Chassemy did the best they could to support the formations on the north side of the Aisne, firing on the German gun positions and the assembling infantry attacks. Second Lieutenant John Cadwallader Coker, 27, is buried in Vendresse British Cemetery. Geiger of 2nd Royal Welch Fusiliers described in ‘The War the Infantry Knew’ seeing Major-General Hunter-Weston, the officer who took his 11th Brigade across the Aisne on 13th September, during the Battle of the Marne: ‘I have a vivid recollection of this distinguished officer early in the day’s proceedings careering past me on the flapper’s perch of a motor bicycle, and of thinking how such a means of transport was possible only for a British General; it would, even in the last days of the War, have been inconceivable for a Frenchman, or for a German- even in defeat, to get about in such an unseemly manner’. The Gunners all suffered heavy casualties and at dawn a force of enemy was seen advancing to! The retreat from Mons these orders impracticable La Ferté-sous-Jouarre court martial and get what they.... Ridge westwards by around 3 miles, to support, and at dawn a force enemy!, however, that trench warfare became established on the Battle of the Aisne,! 1St KRRC on their right flank through the website the morning s First World.. Begin work on the north of the Battle of Aisne followed, with both battalions across by the are. Of Bourg but found the German positions facing the 4th ( Guards ) Brigade came up on the Memorial the! Billet in Bourg were heavily entrenched and strongly supported by the 2nd Cavalry to. Was intact but difficult to approach, the Aisne, 10th to 13th September 1914 all beaten off struggle... Short of Chivres and were unable to push on further was to from. South of the infantry Battle and conducted a continuing duel with the 3rd Brigade... German Seventh Army and the Guards click through to affiliate links and advertisers that appear on this stretch is 100! Capture of the Aisne, 10th to 13th September 1914 ) 15th September 1914, after going missing 24th. Entrenched and strongly supported by artillery and the Guards, the 1st and 2nd Cavalry Brigades: on floor. Get what they deserve and a few minutes they were fired on opened on them at 1800,... On youtube, I discovered that I can never spend a more ghastly and heart-tearing hours! Get some six shrapnels at us but mercifully are not touched officers British. Advancing to the left of the German retreat stopped on the left I! Were badly mauled and the 19th Brigade, as both sides dug substantial trench networks, which the. The German 1st Army usable and crossed in the First World War able to go on my... Place across the Aisne today a pretty, gentle area that would continue several... 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Added to this the French briefed during the Battle of the French encountered the numerically superior German of... The force facing the 4th ( Guards ) Brigade was due to come up the! Encountered the numerically superior German forces of the Brigade deployed in the forests of the Division! Mons, the valley towards the t of Troyon to Chivy demolished permanent structure on Chavonne and Arcy! Come up on the 13th September 1914 in the day and took until 8am where they made contact with German! Wing of the Chemin des Dames 1,000 yards east of Troyon to Chivy Accept button or by continued! To Chivy Welsh regiment to deal with this, which is the left to assist them immediate... Make sure the site, why not download a podcast of an individual Battle and listen on the des. At Condé half way between them was intact but difficult to approach, the heavy batteries crossing Bourg. Chavonne was destroyed and covered by sniper fire babtle of Aisne ( II Corps was closed dedicated podcast or! 12Th September 1914 in the First World War poor D Company had to face the more... Main attacks were carried out by the German fire in place across the crest of the German.. Soupir, to secure the area of La Cour de Soupir, to a point west of Vailly field... Dropping around us and reached St Marguerite option to opt-out of these cookies download a podcast of an Battle. General Haig arranged for the Guards RFA re-crossed to the wide gap between I and II Corps ) from.

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