School History

Midsummer 1917

Volume XI Midsummer 1917 No. 62


War Notes

We heartily congratulate Captain Chave, of the "Alnwick Castle", and O.E., on his fine performance after his ship was torpedoes and sunk by an enemy submarine in the Atlantic.  After suffering great hardships in an open boat, the survivors were picked up by a French steamer.  We would express our very sincere admiration at the splendid behaviour and heroism of Captain Chave.  We all feel very proud to think that he is an Old Edwardian.

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Lieutenant C.M. Delf says that most of his "spare" time is filled up by rounding up lost convoy waggons - a job far more pleasant under the present weather conditions than in the middle of winter!  He goes on to say:-

"At present we are getting a comparatively slack time, and the drivers, taking advantage of the dry weather, polish their harness and groom their horses to such a degree that they turn out as if on parade at Aldershot". 

I have just received the Easter "Sotoniensis" from home, and I have found it most interesting. 

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We have received a graphic account of the state of affairs in the Argentine from B.O. Browning, who was so popular during his School career owing to his athletics.  Apparently, the feelings of the Argentines are decidedly anti-German since the "Estudiantes" (students) have been smashing the windows of the German newspaper offices and clubs, whilst one fellow, selling German newspapers, was practically mobbed by them, and had all his papers destroyed.  Mounted police are placed on guard at all the principal German club offices, and private and commercial houses.  If Browning has grown much more since he left us, he ought to be capable of severely mauling several Germans at once.

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During the latter half of last football season a match was arranged between the Artists' Rifles and the Inns of Court.  The teams were picked from thousands of men, most of them good athletes, and amongst those chosen to play we find the names of no less than three Old Edwardians.  Sergeant Cavill and Lance-Corporal A.K. Campbell played for the Artists' Rifles, whilst R.I. Metcalfe played for the Inns of Court.  It is indeed splendid to think that our former football champions are capable of holding their own in the midst of recognised first-class players.  We would congratulate them on their success and thank them for upholding the traditions of the Old School.

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W.V. Cavill (Second-Lieut, East Yorks) has been awarded the Military Cross.  The "Times" says: "For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty while in command of a small patrol.  He remained in the enemy's front line for a considerable time, finally securing a prisoner and important information".  The expression "a prisoner" is lovely.  Here is the true story.  His superior officer, in the course of a conversation (they were looking through a periscope at the German trench a short distance away) said: "I wish I could get some information about that system of defence".  "I'll get you a prisoner, sir", said Cavill.  He went over, got to the trench, jumped on a Hun, and tackled him in true rugger fashion (he has played for Devon County), and then brought him back.

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A.F. Barker (Flight-Lieutenant, R.F.C.) has just been home again for the second time, and is now attached to the Home Defence.  We asked him if he had had any luck, and he said he is sure that he brought down one "plane", and damaged two others.  Just before his last ascent in France he was talking to Vivian Durkin, also in the R.F.C. The next day they went up together, and he saw Durkin's machine hit by and "Archie"; but he observed the damaged machine steered beautifully, only unfortunately, it landed in the German lines.  So we are hoping Durkin is safe.

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Robert Urie (Second-Lieutenant, R.F.A.) has been home in hospital with a touch of trench fever.  He is back again now.  It is a treat to talk with him, as he sees the humorous side of everything.  Who said "Rats"?  They are so tame that the Tommies while away the time with them.  You sit with feet well straddled, put a piece of food between them, hold a bayonet over it, and wait.  sometimes you get the rat, sometimes you don't, but you always get a second go.

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H.C. Littlejohn (Second-Lieutenant, Hants Regt.) says: "I do not know if it is the spring feeling in the air, but most of us out here feel very hopeful; some even think that they will spend Christmas at home"