The Bend bulletin. (Bend, Or.) 1903-1931, September 19, 1918, WEEKLY EDITION, Page PAGE 6, Image 6

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    til .
OTho CbnfeSi
of a GeMalr
f Written 1y a Prussian Officer
uvtrt H i.t .1 , it r
iirio rarucipaiea tn me stavag
g and Pillaging of Belgium,
, OnrVJ h ftfa fm i),
Wo now tried to pitlicr by com
panics. Of our own company only 12
men remained. Presently others slrng
Bled In until there were 20 of us as
sembled. There Is caper questioning
cTcrywhcra as each man attempts to
learn about his comrade or acquaint
unco. Few questions can be answered,
however, as each man had thought
only of himself In that flight.
Driven by hunger we approached
the village. The first thing we did
teas to hasten to the wells and drink.
We drank os If we wanted tojlll our
selves up with enough water to last us
the rest of our lives. Only here and
there were we able to And anything to
at A few beets were left In the gnr
dens and we nte them eagerly, without
waiting to wash or clean them.
Whcro Is our company? Nobody
knows. We are the company, we 20
men. And our olllccrs. "Somewhere
rarely," said a soldier, "somewhere In
a bomb-proof corner.
But what were we to do? No one
could decide. Presently a noncommis
sioned officer of the field gendarmes
approached on horseback. It Is the
duty of this particular class of defend
ers of the fatherland to round up
slackers behind the front.
Tou are pioneers, he called to us
roughly. "What are you doing here?"
Then be asked us Innumerable ques
tions, wblcb wo answered as well as
we could.
"Where are the others? he asked.
"Over there, said a young Berlin
soldier, and pointed to the battlefield.
"The others are dead or perhaps
prisoners. Several others have man
aged to save themselves and are some
where, perhaps."
"Never mind." the noncommissioned
fllcer said roughly. The conversation
bad become disagreeable to him. "Walt
licre. until I come back. Where are
the officers?"
Again no one could answer. "What
are their names? I shall find them.
Perhaps they are In Vltry.
We told him the names of our offi
cers. Oe gave us Identification papers
so that we might be able to prove to
others Inquiring wby we were waiting
whore we were.
"I hope bis horse falls and he breaks
Ills neck," said one of our men.
We entered one of the bouses whlcb
had been robbed, as were all the others,
threw ourselves down upon the mat
tresses to sleep, sleep, sleep. How
long we slept no one knew. We only
knew thnt It was night and that some
of our company had aroused us. These
were newcomers who had been hunting
for us for a long time.
"Come along. The captain Is out
side and ho Is very angry. He 'has
fathered 17 of his men together and Is
cursing like the very devl! because he
could not locate yon."
Sleepy, and entirely Indifferent to the
future, wo left the building. We knew
that wo would be sent Into action
again but no longer cared. I had never
before seen among a body of soldiers
such an atmosphere of absolute Indif
ference. We came upon the captain. lie saw
til approach minus our headgear, our
uniforms torn Into shreds and without
suns and knapsacks.
"Why are you running around here?
he roared. Thnt was our reception.
Nobody answered. Nobody cared.
.Nothing could be worse than what we
had been through, but although every
one among us felt keenly the Injustice
of the captain's attitude we all re
mained silent.
"Where is your equipment? Lost
lost . This has been a nice business.
The state equips you, you rebel. If all
were like you "
lie raved on for n while after this
fashion, this brave fellow, who, without
any action on his own part permitted
the rebels to retreat while ho defend
ed his fatherland In VI try, 4.20 kilo
meters behind the battle line.
Wo selected guns from those lyjng
We will give you value for
your money in what can be
procured in the markets and
we adhere strictly to all
Food Administration Rules
Baker's Grocery
'fWlfjwWfv v I
VfeWkSB3 y f)
around "Os In lien ps "uTul "Soon" VETO
ready to tight again.
We stood around half asleep, lean
ing on our guns, and waited to be led
once more to tho slaughter. A shot
fell In our midst. It struck n color
sergeant and smashed his right hand.
He cried out from the pnln. ills hand
was quickly bandaged, lie was the
An eyewitness told us how this had
happened. He had rested his hand on
the gun barrel in the snmo manner
as did all the others except that his
hand partly covered tho muzzle. The
orders provldo that the gun be locked
If loaded. Turning to the color ser
geant, who was writhing with pain,
the captain roared at him: "I Rhnll
report you for punishment for your
gross carelessness and for mutilating
yourself In the field."
The color sergeant, a noncommis
sioned officer, realized that his military
career was at an end. We all felt for
him. During the months preceding this
Incident he had always associated him
self with the privates.
We never learned whether he was
brought before a court-martial. Pun
ishment for sclf-mutllatlon was a dally
event and many severe sentences were
pronounced and then made known to
all the others to serve as a deterring
example. The color sergeant's place
was conferred upon another, after
which the captnln disappeared once
more In the direction of VI try.
We inarched away and halted at a
point northwest of the village. Here
we met other pioneers who had been
gathered together from various bat
talions and our unit was once more
brought up to S5 men. The officers
told us that we would not enter the
battle today. Our only duty for tho
time being was to keep the bridges
over the Marne In good condition for
the' German troops fighting on the
other side, so that they could be used
In case the battle went against us.
Wc then marched to our destination,
which was at the point where the
Saulx flows into the Marne.
Wc reached our destination about
six o'clock In the morning. The dead
lay around In heaps everywhere. We
were camping on a wooded height
and could overlook the country for
many kilometers In all directions. We
saw shrapnel bursting by the thou
sands. Little could be seen of the
men who were fighting despite the fact
thnt many divisions were locked In a
death struggle.
Presently we saw the fighting line.
The Germans were about two kilome
ters behind the Mnrne. which flowed
by directly in front of us. German
cavalry In great numbers was en
camped along the banks nf the river
Two temporary bridges In a very dilap
idated condition constructed of what
ever materials were ut bund were lo
cated near us. Preparations had been
mnde to blow them up with thousands
of pounds of dynnmlte. The electric
fuses had been strung to the point
where we were located and It was up
to us to manipulate the switches. Con
nected with the battle line by tele
phone, we were In a position to destroy
the bridges at a moments notice.
The fighting became more lively
We saw the French rush to attack and
retire again. The fire of musketry In
creased and the attacks became more
frequent. This coutlnucd for more
than two hours.
We saw the French continuing to
tiring up re-enforcements conxtuntly
despite the German urtlllery fire.
After nn extended pause tht- French
made another attack, employing sev
eral different kinds of formations.
Each time tho waves of offensive
troops were forced back. At three
o'clock in the afternoon, under a blow
which contained the full power of
France, our troops were forced to re
tire, first slowly, then In wild tllght.
The exhausted Germans could not bo
rallied In the faco of till a blow. With
t Ha Ft ' - V r L J
The Fighting Dccame More Lively.
wild confusion all tried nt tho same
time to reach tho bridges beyond
which lay safely.
At this Instant tho cavalry which
had token cover along tho river bunk
gnlloped to the bridge position. In a
moment tho bridge was covered with
human bodies, nil racing for the op
posite bnnk. We could see this tem
porary structure trembling under this
enormous burden.
Our officer saw tho situation and he
nervously pressed the telephone re
ceiver to his left enr. His right hand
was on the switch. llrenthleisly he
stared at the fleeing masses. "If only
tho telephone connections had not been
broken." he muttered to himself. Ho
knew as well as all the rest of us that
ho was to act on the Instant thnt the
curt order came over tho wire.
It was not much that he had to do.
Merely make u movement of his bauds.
Masses of troops continued to rush
across the bridge until more than half
were safely over. Tho bridge further
abovo was not in such great demand,
and with the lessened congestion al
most all who crossed hero were
already safe. We could see how tho
first of the French units had crossed,
but the bridge continued to stand.
Tho sergeant who manned tho appa
ratus at this bridge became restless
waiting for orders, and finally on his
own Initiative blew It up. Some
Frenchmen and hundreds of Germans
upon the bridge fouud their graves In
tho Marne.
At tho same moment the officer
standing next to me received the order
to blow up the last bridge. He ties).
tated to obey, for he could still see
many Germans on tho other side. He
could see tho nice for tho road leading
to tho bridgehead as all sought safety
at the same Instant. There a terrible
panic reigned. Many soldiers Jumped
Into tlie river and tried to swim across.
Tho pressure became greater ns the
thousands still on tho other stdo tried
to get back.
Tho message over the wire became
more and more Insistent. Finally the
officer sprang up, rushed by the pio
neer standing at the apparatus and a
second later there was a terrible deto
nation bridge and men were thrown
Into the air hundreds of meters. Just
as a river at high tide races along,
taking with it all mnnner of debris, so
the surface of the Marne was covered
with wood, men, torn uniforms and
horses, efforts to swim were futile,
yet soldiers continued to Jump Into tho
On the other sldo tho French began
to disarm such German soldiers ns
stood there with raised hands. Thou
sands of prisoners, Innumerable horses
and machine guns fell Into tho hands
of the enemy. Several of our company
were Just about to retire with the
electric apparatus when something de
veloped which certain of our number
had suspected. An error had been
mado and It was too luto to rectify it.
The upper bridge, which had not
been used to any great extent by the
Germans, should have been left stand
ing! It had been the purpose of the staff
In command to leavo this brldgo so
that the enemy might continue Its pur
snlt of our troops until a certain num
ber of Frcnctimen had crossed the
river. Tho plan was to permit enough
Frenchmen to pass so that they could
be taken prisoner, yet, not too largo
a force, lest It might prove a nienuco
to the German arms.
After these hostile troops had
crossed, tho plan was to destroy the
brldgo to prevent their being re
enforced. That was why tiro sergeant
manning this switch had been kept
waiting for tho order to blow up tho
bridge. Hut the sergeant In tho ex
citement and confusion thought thut
the cnblo to which his phone was con
nected had been disconnected and blew
up tho brldgo on his own Initiative
while It wus crowded by Frenchmen
and long before the etieiuy could have
bud an opportunity to cut that cnhli
At the hutno time the miw-i-r m r
switch connected with the explosives
under the second brldgo received ids
orders. IIo afterwards raid that tho
order ho received was hard to make
out und thnt ho had lost his presence
of mind and threw In tho Nwtch,
thereby killing thousands on tho bridge
and leaving many other thousands to
tho mercy of tho enemy.
Heforo there was tlmo for moro Im
pressions our entire unit wns ordered
to Vltry t? i)9 ""'"mblcd In fjoni o.f
Hie caffieiTrnl, "WITT KfETETT oTTSITCt
we hurried nway, for the French ar
tillery began once tuoro to send shells
with much accuracy over tho entire
countryside. Wounded men from other
detachments whom wo passed on the
read told us thnt tho French had al
ready crossed tho Mnrno In several
different places. Rveryono among in
Tolced the name opinion. W had al
ready sustained great losses on Bel
gian soil and each day brought new
sacrifices. Our lines boenmo thinner
and thinner. Many companies were
entirely destroyed nnd nil units suf
fered heavily. These companies whose
forces hnd been reduced to n minimum
and with the survivors half starved
were opposed by nn army well
equipped with supplies and arms. The
enemy constantly brought up fresh
troops while our forcca bvcamu fewer
from hour to hour. Wo realised that
It was Impossible to make n stand
here. We were constantly learning
from soldiers of other contingent that
their losses lu men and materials were
I thought nf the God of tho Ger
mans, Had ho forsaken them?
I thought It so loud that the others
could hear.
"Yes," said another, "whom the
Lord wishes to punish Is first stricken
with blindness. Probably he thought
of nelglum, Donchery, Sommepy nnd
Rutppcs, and still many other place
and let us run Into this perdition Ilk
flying fiends."
Wo reached VI try. Hero the misery
seemed to bo still grenter thnn ever
before, for in tho entire town there
wns not n single hnusu thnt wns not
overcrowded with wounded. In tho
midst of nil this misery robbery flour
ished. All residences hnd been emp
tied of their furnishings and every
thing wns thrown Into the streets to
mnko room for the wounded.
Tho saullnry squads went over the
town nnd took everything of any value.
Tho munition and railroad columns
followed the samo practice. They had
plenty of room for plunder. This wns
amply proven by numerous seizures
afterward of parcels put In tho mall,
which contained gold rings, watches,
precious stones, etc. Tho business of
the marauders flourished hero In Vltry.
The soldiers In the supply columns en
countered very llttto actual danger;
they had an easy tlmo ns compnred
with soldiers fighting nt the front.
Wo soon reached tho cathedral and
reported to Lieutenant Kim. He also
had defended his fatherland nt n safe
distance and here In tho city, freshly
shaved and In Immnculato attire he
looked very presentable.
The contrast was vivid as he stood
before us who were torn, dirty and cov
ered with blood, with unkempt hair,
with beards grown and caked with
mud and dirt.
Wo were obliged to wnlt so wc sat
down and looked nround us. The
church was full of wounded; many
died under tho hnnds of tho doctors.
They were carried out to mako room
for others. Tho dend were carried to
ono side, where whole rows of corpses
lay. We counted more than sixty.
On our way to Vltry wo hnd begged
some bread, but wo were still hungry
and our field kitchens were nowhere In
sight. Tho crows of our field kitchens
as well ns our forAge officers and non
commissioned officers prefer to defend
their fatherlnnd mnny kilometers be
hind the bnttle fronts. They did not
caro about us as long as they were
not obliged to go within range nf the
artillery fire. Comradeship has its
limitations with them.
Other field kitchens were near by.
They had prepared more food than
their companies needed. Many for
whom they had cooked will never ent
again. Wo were Invited to come nnd
get whatever wo wnnted.
Wo hnd scarcely finished entlng
when wo hnd to march on. Presently
we were Joined by moro members of
our company. Our captain appeared.
Ono of our olllccrs reported to him the
number mlsidng. Ho stopped In front
of the company nnd said cheerfully,
"Good morning, men," although It was
seven o'clock In tho evening. A growl
wns the only response. Wo were then
ordered to go to tho wagons standing
at tho north side of tho town,, where
each man was to supply himself with
cartridges nnd threo hnrid grenades.
Wo gnthered at tho wagons nt 0:30
o'clock and each man took 600 car
tridges, his three grenades and matches
to light them. On the way to the wag
ons wo snw everywhere formations be
ing hastily organized from stray sol
diers nnd wo received tho impression
of some great activity In preparation,
Tho rain had begun to fall in tor
rents. As wo took our places we saw
tho streets filled with troops wearing
special uniforms to protect them
against the weather. These uniforms
consisted of a suit of weatherproof
clothing, n cap, such baggngo as must
bo taken on a march, n tent cloth, tent
sticks, dishes nnd, with tho pioneers,
trench tools. Thus equipped, wo stood
In tho ruin and waited, Ignorant of
whnt luy before us.
Wo wero ordered to tuko tho breech
locks out of tho guns nnd put them
In our bread bags. Tho guns now
wero no good for shooting. Wo now
begun to understntid what lay boforo
iih. A night fittncl' was planned with
bayonets and hand Kreiiudc, .mil tho
measures which hnd been tnkon wcru
tnlten po that we would not shoot at
one another In tho darkness.
Wo stood nnd waited until eleven
o'clock, when the order suddenly camo
to go Into quarters. Wo did not know
what to mako of this after all the
preparations. We could toll from tho
drum lire and tho red glare In the sky
that the hattlo had not lossencd In
violence. The sky glowed, Illumined
by tho burning villages and farms.
On the wuy to our quarters wo heard
tjie officers snylng among themselves
,nt imfiTSMFCT' Trail livTB UTRIltlTa TC
defeat the French. This hnd been tho
Field Kitchens Were Near Dy.
reason behind the preparations for tho
night attack which had now been
cnlled off.
Headquarters apparently hod de
cided otherwise. Perhaps It was known
there thnt nothing could bo accom
plished by attacking and the order wns
given to begin tho retreat which was
put Into effect the next morning nt six
o'clock. Wo did not realise then thnt
this was to be our Inst night In Vltry.
Wo wvre sheltered In n shed for the
nisht As we were very tired, wo soon
were fast asleep. We were aroused at
four o'clock In the morning, everyone
was given n loaf of brend and ordered
to fill his canteen with water, after
which the march began. Although we
were Ignornnt of our destination, the
inhabitant of Vltry seemed to under
stand where wo were going nnd they
stood on tint streets throwing us sig
nificant glances.
Everywhere tho feverish movement
was on. W stopped In front of tho
town hall. Here tho cnptnln told us
that because of difficulty In the terrain
our troops hnd to vacate their wl
tlons nnd retire to nearby heights and
occupy new defenses. With that he
turned around and Hlnted to a rldgo
on the horizon.
"There we shall mako a stand nnd
wait for tho enemy," he said. "No
re-enforcements will arrive tinlay and
In a fow days wo may send picture
postal cards to your homes from
(To Do Continued.)
A Woman's Hrnrtv Itrcoiiunoiulntlon.
Worry and overwork cnuso kidney
trouble, and women sulfur equally
with men. Miss Sara Wcsten, llelvl
lore, III., .writes: "I could not stoop
nnd whan down I had to crawl up by
a chair. I was so lamo 1 suffered
agony. Now I feel llko n now per
son, stronger and bettor In every
way, I heartily rocommond Foley
Kldnoy Pills," Bold everywhere.
Adv. (Tlj t?mmm
KSBSVir,lTi J.'IIBaTriTdJIIJIfl-l-SffsI
Summon! all the fnrcei
tuc (icicnic oi rrccuom
which the United States authorities Imvo ranked at one of the
fifteen diitlngutihed Inititutinat of the country for excellence In
military training, hat rcinondcd to the call. The College is
diitingulihcd not only for its military imtruction, but
Distinguished alio roa
Iti strong Industrial cotinei for men and for women!
I ii Anilculturt , Cumincict , l''nlncnpi, Komtiy
lluintl'.connmlci, Mining, l'luimicy, n J
Vocitlontl llduntlon,
lu wholesome, purposeful student life,
Its democratic college spirit,
Its successful graduates,
Studrnts enrolled last ycar,p45t stars on Its service flags, 1258, 1
over forty percent representing officers.
Colloco opens Soptembcr 23, 1918
niw IllutluttJ Rootlet, soil other Inlormitlon welts to tin Rcxlitrar, Corvillli, Oregon
riio.M i)i:soiiuti:h county on
OCTOIIKK 7 WIMj kxiiauht
(From Tuosdny's Dully,)
A call tor ton men from Dosuhuten
county to report for training nt
Camp I. owls has boon rvculvod by
tho local draft board, und tho list
will bo complotod either Into thin
afternoon or tomorrow morning. Tho
moit nro to ontrnin huro for Camp
Luwls on October 7,
This Is tho second call to bo ro
rnlvml by tho local draft board thin
mouth, tho formur lining for 18 men.
Thlrtooii men urn now loft In class 1
In Dnscliutus county. This Includes
four of 1917 classification, four or
Juno, 1U1H, classification and flvo of
August, 101K, classification,
Tho call of tnu men for Octobor 7
will loavu but threo within tho list.
Four chairs at your snrvico at tho
Metropolitan. No wattlnft. Adv.
Dr. Turner, oyo specialist of Port
laud, will ho lu llond ngitlii Wednes
day and Thursday, Hopt. 11 and 12.
nt Thorson's Jnwolry store, Dr. Tur
ner Is a specialist of vxporlnnco nnd
standing and you wilt mako no mis
tnko In consulting- him about your
eyes and glasses. Headache re
lieved, Cross-oyes straightened. But
Isfactloti Kunrniitoed. Consult hi m.
Don't forget tho date. Adv.27
A VUilof
A Dpitue
A H.-tli -
A Dih
An Accident
An ll!iti
Any Nw DuiUing -
Socul FutKtioni
A Rrl EJUIe Tltnitdion
Any Itnjsotcmrnli
Anything lint li of Inlrf rtt
Phone it to
The Bulletin
tn . .
and reiourcei of the Republic to
The Owl Pharmacy
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