The Polk County post. (Independence, Or.) 1918-19??, June 04, 1918, Image 3

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    ly. *• everything which might strength-
•m this hope.
The bicycles lying In the road Indi­ 1 left them. In contrast to the fugitives, the night to participate tn the work o f the Mege fighttng We lost 1ST ntcfl f *
whom we had met before, these were destruction
The soldiers suddenly (lead and wounded.
cated that the bicycle division was in
-“itrem ely frightened, appearing to be beard above their wends the tvhirliug
the tight at this point. How strong
This night we slept In an open Odd.
In mortal terror',»! their enemy. When­ o f propellers and the noise o f the mo­
the enemy was we did not know an we
At five o'clock the next morning wo
ever they looked upon one of us Ger­ tors.
The Zeppelins came nearer.
raced toward the firing line. Every­
marobed again until four o’clock in
They were nut discovered by the ene­
man soldiers they cringed in terror.
body crouched down as low as possi­
the afternoon, wiieu we were given n
ble while Jumping to the right and
Inhabitants o f the village where we which immediately played all the
1 left. Before and behind us the bullets
It was about ten o'clock In the eve­
were flying continuously, yet we i had first stopped, who had met us la
ning when we received orders to ad­
a friendly, even [stllte manner. We
reached the firing line without losses.
vance. We were all ready to proceed '
tried to learn the cause o f this fright
We were greeted joyously by our hard-
when another order came for us to re­
ami discovered that the fugitives bad
pressed comrades. The bicycle regi-
main at our bivouac overnight. Dur­
nent had not suffered any losses ex- . witnessed in their village bitter street
ing the night we heard thunaertng o f
ept fo r a few slightly wounded men j fighting. They had become acquainted
~ lr - » —
cannon which became more violent.
who were still able to take part in the j with war— hud seen ttieir houses
The battle o f Neuve Chatauu. which
I burning, hail seen Vielr little property
had continued from August 22 to Au­
W e were lying flat on the grouud
gust 24, 1914. had begun.
rod firing In the direction ordered for
At four o’clock on the morning o f
til we were worth, even though we
August 22 we resumed our march. At
It dawned upon us that not merely
nad not seen our enemies. That was
I ?»'euvo Chateau the French army had
fear gave these people the appearance |
apparently not Interesting enough to
1 encountered the Fourth German army.
of hunted animals; there was also !
some o f our soldiers. They wanted
Copyright bt Drtroti Fra Prat
First there was, as always, minor out­
hatred toward the Invaders who had '
to know how the people were looking
post and patrol tightlug. By afd by
At 1 u. in. we were again
fallen upon them and driven them
whom they had to shoot at. They got
larger masses of troops partlcifmtccL
1 roused and honored by a speech from
from their homes by nigbt.
up to a kneeling position. T w o men o f
and as we took our part In the battle '
I am a German soldier. Naturally our captain. He said we were at. war
ray company hud to pay fo r tlietr curi­
In the evening we departed and
i 011 the evening o f August 22, the tight
at the time when the war started we with Belgium. He told us to show
osity with their lives almost instantly.
tried to reach our own regiment. The J
hud developed Into oue of the most
did not know that there would be such 1 ourselves brave, deserve the Iron cross
The first victim o f our party went
Belgians hud concentrated somewhere .
stmgtiltmfy o f the world war.
a war as 13 being waged today.
and bring honor to Germany. Then he
down without a sound. The second , to the rear under cover of darkness. ‘
Wheu we arrived the French, occu­
Dally w e soldiers were told that continued:
threw his arms high in the air aud fell
W e were quite near the neighborhood
pied almost three-quarters of the town.
France and Russiu wanted to attack
"W e only make war against the
on his back.
Both w ere dead in­
of the fortified city o f Liege. Many
The artillery had set the main pfert o f
us and that the kaiser was doing ev­ 1 armed force, the Belgian army. L ife
settlements through which we passed
Neuve Chateau on fire and on(y the
erything possible for our protection. ; and property o f civilians are protected
stood in flames; the inhabitants d riven 1
It is impossible for me to describe
beautiful resideuce section in the'west­
Already on July 20 we were ariyed to ! under international law. Yet you sol­
the feeling that overcame me in the 1 out. passed us in droves.
ern part o f the c(ty escaped at that
the teeth and prepared to march away. diers must ’not forget to keep your
first real volley as we advanced and I children and old men were buffeted
All night long the house-to-
During these preparations,
which lives fo r the fatherland or sell them as
came directly within the range o f the about aud seemed to be everywhere in
house lighting continued, but wtyeu at
showed us all that war had to come,
fire. I no longer felt any fright, only
the way. Without alms or [duns, wtth-
noon of August 23 the city was in Ger-
18 men o f my company deserted.
an impulse to get into action as quick­ out a place on which to lay their heads
tuaa hands tiie enormous cost to tho
The government published, during
ly as possible. Y et at the sight o f the
these poor people dragged themselves
Germans could finally be determined.
this time, bulletins almost hourly to
first corpse a terrible fear seized me.
Residences, rellnrs, streets and side»
prepare the people fo r the war, a
F or minutes I was completely stunned,
Again w e reached a village, which
walks were heaped with dead and
subterfuge that succeeded perfectly.
lost all self-control and was absolute­ to all appearances had been inhabited
wounded. The houses were in ruin»—>
Played tha Searchlight on Them.
Consequently two days before war was
ly unable to think or do anything.
by contented people.
Now Indeed
empty shells, In which hardly anything
declared, the people were overwhelm­
nothing but ruins could be seen. searchlights at their disposal on them, remained undamaged that was of any
I pressed my face and hands close
ingly for war, but they were certain
Wrecked bouses and farms, dead sol­ hunting the firmament for the flying real value. Thousands became beg­
to the ground. I wanted to clutch my
that It was only to be between Ger­
diers, German and Belgian, and among foe. The whirling of the propellers gars in one terrible night. Women and
gun and shoot blindly. Presently I
many and France.
calmed down. I suddenly became con­ them many civilians, who had been of the airships stopped suddenly. In­ children, soldiers Htid citizens were ly­
O f the Intervention o f Belgium.
shot by military order.
tented with myself and conditions
stead, high in the ¿lr a brilliant light
ing where the pitiless shells and bul­
Russia. England and Italy, the coun­
about me and when soon afterward
Toward midnight we reached the appeared, the searchlight of the Zep­ lets had hurled them from life into
try had as little thought as it did of
the command was sounded along the
German lines.
The Germans had pelin, which, for a moment, illuminat­ death's dark void. True Impartiality
any participation of the United States.
tried to take a village which lay with­ ed the entire landscape.
whole line, “ Spring out 1” “ Forward
reigned in the killing. There was a
A ll thought only o f the promenade to
in the fortified belt o f Liege and was
march!” I charged, as did everyone
Suddenly all became dark again. A
Belgian woman lying next to a Belgian
Paris, which, to the disappointment o f
defended tenaciously by the Belgians. few moments later powerful detona­ baby which she had borne from house
else like one possessed. The order to
the people, and also, surely to the
Here all forces had to be used In or­ tions revealed the fact that the Zep­ to street. Close by lay a man of un­
halt followed.
Like wet bags we
disappointment o f the autocracy, has
plumped to the ground. Firing had be­ der to drive the enemy out, house by pelin had thrown off "ballast." That
certain years before an empty house.
been longer drawn out than had been
house and street by street. It was not went on a long while. Explosion fol­ Both his legs were burued to the
gun anew1.
wished for.
very dark yet, so that we had to w it­ lowed explosion. Tnese were followed
Our firing now became more lively
knees. His wife lay on his breast and
In these days o f uncertainty the
sobbed so pitifully that her grief could
momentarily and Increased to a fear­ ness with all o f our senses the terrible by clouds of fire. In the air, exploding
soldiers, contrary to the cruel treat­
fights which developed here. It was a shrapnel which the Belgian artillery
not be endured. Most of the dead
ful loudness. I f we had occasion to
ment which they had experienced be­
man-to-nian fight. With the butts o f fired at the airships could be observed.
were entirely or partly burned. The
say anything to our comrades we had
fore, were treated liberally with great
our guns, knives, fists, teeth we went The whirling o f the propellers started
cries o f agony of the animals fighting
to shout so loudly in their ears that It
quantities o f supplies,. delicacies and
up again, directly above our heads. It
against the enemy.
incineration were mixed with tho
hurt our throats.
beer, so that most of the soldiers were
groans and sobbing of the wounded.
One o f m.v best friends fought with became quieter and quieter, until the
Under the effect o f our fire the ene-
so drunk continuously that they were
But no one had time to bother with
my grew restless, the fire weakened a giant Belgian. The guns of both had powerful ships of the air disappeared
unable to realize the seriousness of
from our vicinity.
fhera. The French were making an­
and his line wavered. As only 500 fallen to the ground. They hammered
the situation.
Thus the forts were leveled. Thou­ other stand outside the city in an open
meters separated us from them w e one another with fists. I had Just
And yet the m ajority o f the sol­
field. As the enemy vacated the town
could observe exactly what happened closed an account with a twenty-two- sands of Belgians lay behind the walls
diers could not be enthused over the
the Germans made an error which coot
year-old Belgian and was going to t as­ and under the fortifications, dead und
there. We saw about half the enemy
war. They cheered and were enthu­
A general storming attack
them hundreds of lives. They had oc­
sist my friend because his antagonist burled.
retire in the follow ing manner: Every
siastic because they knew it was the
cupied the entire town so quickly that
other man quit the line, leaving his al­ I was o f superior strength. My friend followed. Liege was in the hands of
orders. On July 31, 1914, one day be­
the German artillery which shelled •
succeeded suddenly in biting the Bel­ the Germans, who hud paid, in dead
ternate in bis place. Tbose remaining
fo re the declaration of war, we left, Honored by a Speech From Our Cap­
part of the city did not know o f tho
gian on the chin so deeply that he tore alone In this battle. 28,000 men.
held on until the retiring party halted.
a fter being brought to war strength,
change in the situation and threw
W e used this moment to Inflict the | x piece o f flesh out with his teeth. The
fb r our garrison at Mainz-am-Rheine.
shells Into the ranks of the Infantry.
1 Belgian’s pain must have been terri­
Where the enemy toward which we dearly as possible. Unnecessary shed­ enemy. As far as w e could scan the
Finally our soldiers were compelled to
ble. He released my comrade and ran
w ere to point our bayonets was we ding o f blood we will prohibit to the horizon to the right and le ft we saw
away with an insane cry of pain.
I went to Alx-la-Chappelle to a hos­ give up some of their gains by tho
had not the slightest idea. A ll we did
pressure of our own as well as tho
the Germans advancing In several sec­
Everything developed by seconds. pital. I met muny more wounded men
know was that w e had to be trans­ consider that too much consideration tors. Also fo r our detachments the 1 The blood o f the Belgian ran out o f
French flro, but regained this ground
ported somewhere to protect the bor­ i borders on cowardice and that w ill be order came to advance as the enemy my friend's mouth; a terrible nausea
Strangely enough, the
o f the opinion that the Belgian dead
punished very severely."
numbered as many civilians as sol­ residence section previously mentioned
and Indescribable loathing seized him.
bad not auffered seriously. All tho
There were stirring times as w e
The task o f clinging to the heels The taste o f warm human blood
diers. Even If the German soldiers
houses flew the Red Cross and woro
started out. Tens o f thousands of : were loaded on our autos and at 4 a. o f the retiring enemy so tenaciously brought him almost to the verge o f In­ who fought tn Belgium do not admit
used as temporary hospitals.
- -■»-’V-
people threw flowers at us and all m. crossed the border Into Belgium. that no time would be allowed to make sanity. In the course o f this night
the cruelties committed against the
wanted to shake hands.
A ll— even In order to make this a historical oc­ a new stand fell to us. W e followed battle I came in contact for the first
Here it was reported that Belgian*
Belgians, It cannot be denied that at
soldiers— cried ! Many embraced their casion we were ordered to give three the Belgians, scarcely stopping to time with the butt o f a Belgian gun. least 80 per cent of the cruelties
mutilated German soldiers. Whether
On the speedy autos we
wives or young brides. The bands cheers.
known to the world to have been com­ tuis were true, or only a rumor, similar
breathe on the way, In order to pre­ During a hand-to-hand fight with a
played farewell songs and people reached our goal at 10 a. m. It was a vent their fortifyin g themselves in a Belgian, a second enemy soldier
to others being constantly started by
mitted in Belgium were only too true.
laughed and cried all at the same 1 beautiful little rural village. Inhabi­ village situated Just ahead. W e knew struck me on the back o f the head
German soldiers, I cannot say, but I
A young soldier who lay next to me
time. Strangers embraced and kissed
that a bloody house-to-house fight lay with the butt o f his gun so hard that In the hospital told me that bis com­ do know that on August 24, after the
each other. “ A veritable witch’s holi­ looked at us in astonishment, so that before us, yet the Belgians never at­ my helmet was forced down over my pany, during a street fight In Liege,
French had retired, It was made
d ay" o f emotion was loosened and en­ we all got the Impression that these tempted to establish themselves, but pars. The pain was fearful and I
known through an urmy order that
was given orders to kill everybody
gulfed the populace like a storm. No country people never knew why we managed to escape with astonishing falgted.
without discrimination. Systematical­ German soldiers had been murdered
there, and that the German army could
one, not even the strongest, could re­ came to Belgium. They were fright­ cleverness.
ly. one house after another wns set on
When I revived, I was lying In a
sist its powers. Yet even this was ened out o f their sleep and looked out
not leave the scene o f these outrage*
In_ the meantime w e received re-en­ barn, with my head bandaged, among fire. The Inhabitants either fell In the
without first avenging the victims.
surpassed by the leave-taking at the at us from their windows.
forcements. Our company was now other wounded men. My wound was
flumes or became the victims In the
As we halted and left our autos, the pretty well scattered and fought with
depot, where last farewells had to be
It was ordered by the commander
streets to the gun burrels of the Ger­
not severe. I only had a feeling as if
said. This scene will never leave me! farmers came out find offered us cof­ whatever unit was nearby. The body my head was twice Its normal size,
of the army to level the remainder o f
man kultur-bearers.
How desperately muny women clung fee. bread, meat. etc. We were still I Joined had to remain In the villnge l’he other wounded soldiers and the
the city and to show no mercy. As we
At the time I doubted the words of
to their m en! Many had to be forcibly without .1 Held kitchen, so that we en­ to search systematically fo r scattered ambulance men said the Belgians had my neighbor, even though I had seen
took a short rest from our pursuit o f
joy ,'d the enemy’s offerings ni tre so
the enemy and looked backward clouds
soldiers. From this village w e saw been forced hack within the forts and what German warfure meant. After
of smoke to the eastward showed that
But this was at last done and then since those o f the better class o f vil­ that the Germans had gained on all that hard fighting was still in prog­ a few days I wns released from the
the order had been executed. A re­
w e were placed in cuttle cars. Night la ers r fused any pay: They told us sides.
Field artillery, machine gun ress.
hospital and again restored to my de­
maining battery o f artillery had re­
came and we had no lights. The train the Belgian s.Vdiors hud departed to detachments and other equipment ar­
Wounded men were brought In con­ tachment. Partly by auto, partly by
duced the city to ashes.
went slowly toward the Rhine. It some unknown destination.
rived and we were all astonished at tinuously and they told us that the foot, I reached my detachment by ten
A fter a short rest tve marched on. their coming so quickly.
went smoothly enough. Our company,
The French had made a stand out­
Germans had already stormed several o’clock In the evening. Our transport
which had hud days o f great excite­ The ntilos returned. Hardly had we
But there was no time to be spent forts aud had taken a number o f main moved this time over T rier to Luxem­ side the city and resisted to the ut­
ment, welcomed the rest that the jour­ marched an hour when we wer • over­ In speculation. IVIth fixed bayonets
most, but they were outnumbered. It
ind auxiliary defenses, but could not burg. The little grand duchy of Lux­
ney afforded.
Most o f the soldiers taken by cavalry, dragoons ai d hus­ we went from house to house, door to bold them because they had not been emburg was overrun entirely by Ger­
wns simply Impossible to resist the
slept with their knapsacks us pillows. sars. who reported that the Gormans door, and while the results were negli­ sufficiently supported hy artillery. T fi* man soldiers. The Germans who had
pressure of the German war machine.
Others looked dreamily into the fu ­ were marrhlng all over the neighbor­ gible because we found no soldiers we
When the Germau columns, with fixed
lefenses inside the forts and their ga^ made their homes In Luxemburg had
bayonets, attacked to the accompani­
ture. Still otherstsecretly pulled pic­ hood on all roads. Right behind came did not come out quite empty-handed. risons were still intact. The situation everything taken uwuy from them, es­
ment o f their blood-curdling yells
tures from their breastpockets and only the bicycle corps.
We made the inhabitants deliver all was not ripe fo r a storming attack, so pecially the farmers, all food, without
which, Ifke their steel, penetrated to
a very few killed time by discussion
This was comforting. We no longer guns and munitions and so forth in ’ tlle Germans had to retire with enor- thought of payment, so that In Luxem­
the bone, they resembled In every re­
and comment on their possible desti­ felt alone, isolated in a strnnge coun­ thelr possession. The mayor, accom­ mous losses. The reports we received burg at this time there was a shortage
spect American Indians going Into ac­
Another bicycle division over­ panying the soldiers, explained to were contradictory. It was Impossible o f food. The people here as well as
tion, flinging themselves with blood­
“ Where are we going?”
Yes, took us and passed on. Angry words every citizen that all found with arms to get a clear picture. In the mean­ in Belgium were very friendly, yet they
curdling yells upon their enemies.
where? No one knew. Then after were now uttered by members o f our after the search would be punished time the artillery bombardment had harbored a terrible bitterness against
A fter a three-hour fight many French­
endless hours, the train stopped. W e company. The others could ride hut according to the rules o f war and become so Intense that It horrified the German government, which had
men gave themselves up as prisoners.
were in Duren. What were we there we had to walk. W hat we had always German rules of war In Belgium ! even the German soldiers. The heavi­ loosed Its troops like a band o f robbers
With uplifted hands they sought
for? W e did not know. The officers taken fo r granted suddenly hecame meant execution.
est artillery was brought Into action and murderers over their peaceful
only shrugged their shoulders at our great injustice. I f it did no good our
An hour might have passed when
’ At last, on the night o f August 23
grumbling at least was a diversion
Belgium and Luxemburg, the two
we were again aroused by the sound fenses.
and 24, the enemy’s ranks were thrown
A fter a brief pause we went ahead. from the weight o f our packs.
N o soldier so far knew anything of first unhappy victims of the damnable
of artillery and gunfire. A new battle
Into confusion and they retired slowly.
On the evening o f August 1 we reached
The heat was oppressive. The sweat had begun. Whether the artillery was the existence o f the 42-centimeter tnor» German politics and its drunkenness
I was in the first detuchment which
a farmyard near Duren. Our company came from all pores. The new and busy on both sides could not be Judged tars. Long after Liege was In Ger­ with power I
That the Luxemburg citizens detest­ pursued them. T o the right and left
was billeted in a barn. No one knew stiff leather trappings rubbed us sore, from our village. The bombardment man hands these soldiers could not
of the road, tn the field and ditches,
what we had to do. Ignorant o f the especially upon our hips. It was a re­ was tremendous. The ground shook understand how It was possible that ed Germany an incident showed me
were dead and wounded.
which happened In the village o f Mar-
purpose o f our being sent so near the lie f at 2 p. m. to halt at an abandoned
from the growling and moaning that
The red pantaloons of the French
Belgian border we laid down on otlr farm and rest on the grass.
W e rolled backward and forward, always ble six-meter walls o f steel nn1 con­ moth. We were In a friendly conver­
showed brightly on the ground. The
beds o f straw.
Something had to might have lain down about ten min­ seeming to become stronger.
crete, were reduced after only a few sation with a Luxemburg farmer. Two
officers approached and listened. One
field gray of the Germans could hardly
happen soon to rescue us from this un­ utes when suddenly we heard tiring.
hours’ bombardment.
officer, a captain, asked the Luxem­ be discerned.
W e Jumped up like lightning and hur­
brought in the first wounded. Cour­
burger, “ What do you think o f the
(Continued F rid a y.)
How few suspected that would be ried to our guns. The firing which
iers sped by us. W ar had set In in operations, being wounded, but my war, and of the quickness o f Germany?
the last night fo r many o f us on Ger­ was about three kilometers away grew
comrades told me later how the cap­
all Its phases.
There U only oue Germany, isn't
man ground. An alarm took us from more lively. A t once we were on the \
Darkness came over us before we ture o f the several forts came about. there?”
our beds at 3 a. m. The company | march again.
had finished our house-to-house search.
"Y es," replied the farmer. “Thank
gathered and the captain demonstrat­
From the expressions on the faces We dragged all the mattresses, straw the forts, but It was the 21-centlmeter
ed the war situation. As to the direc­ o f the Soldiers we could read the minds j
sacks and feather bed» that we could mortars and the 42s which performed
(C ontinued from 1’age l.>.
For those four words the fanner
tion o f the march ho himself was Ig­ o f the men. Something took posses­
lay our nands on, to the community the real work.
was arrested at once and transported 1 “ sparks” I over have worn. I ex­
sion of them which they had never ex­
From a distance the 42-ceptlmeter
school and church to care fo r the-
Scarcely half an hour later 50 big perienced before.
As for myself I wounded. They were made as com­ projectiles were heard to arrive, to the to Germany as a court prisoner. I pect to w ea r m any m ore before I
could never learn what became of finish.
T e ll G race she m a y keep
trucks drove up and stopped on the became very restless. Fright and curi­
fortable as possible. From other sur­ accompaniment o f a fearful hissing him.
road before our quarters. The driv­ osity lashed my brain.
Everything rounding villages now came the first that sounded like a long drawn-out
The same evening w » w*re trans­
e r » also were Ignorant and waited fo r whirled around In my head and my
I w ould like to w a lk in on you
fugitives. They may have been march­ screech which filled the whole at­ ported In automobiles and on the eve­
orders. Discussion o f our destination heart was beating wildly. But I strove
chicken fly in g time. H ere it
ing. for they looked tired and utterly
ning of August 20. 1914, we reached
started afresh.
The orderlies who to conceal my fright from my com­
thing was destroyed within a radius our detachment, which wns about 35 f is one hig rush from w eek to Week.
had been keeping their ears open said j rades. I am sure that I tried energeti­
H UGH M ll.L K Ii
Women, old men and children were o f several hundred meters. The air miles from the Relgtun city o f Neuve
w e would enter Belgium that day. cally. I don’t know that I succeeded
huddled together in one mass. They pressure which the bursting o f the pro­ Chateau. The regiment to which I be­
Others contradicted them, no one better than my companions.
had saved nothiug except their bare jectile produced was so terrible that It longed did not take part in any opera­
knew for certainty.
Although I knew we Would be In lives. In baby buggies or on wheel­ made breathing difficult for those o f
tions after the fall o f Liege, but was
But the order to march did not come the fight In an hour, I tried to per­
barrows these unfortunates carried us who were holding the advanced po­ transported to this part o f Belgium.
and In the evening we went back to suade myself that our Interference
whatever the rude force o f war had sitions.
Now I learn for the first time how
our straw.
the rest
waa would not be necessary. I clung tight­
T o make this witch#** holiday coo*
heavy was the toes la my company la
j plot*, the ZeppeUns appeared during
Written by a Prussian Officer*
Who Participated in the R a v a g
mg and Pillaging o f Belgium
P OStr-$l#50