The Daily Courier from Connellsville, Pennsylvania on May 1, 1918 · Page 7
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The Daily Courier from Connellsville, Pennsylvania · Page 7

Connellsville, Pennsylvania
Issue Date:
Wednesday, May 1, 1918
Page 7
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WEDNESDAY, MAY-1, 191. y THE DAILY COURIER, CONNELLSVILLE, PA,- PAGE SEVEN. ^ ly a Prussian Officers* f\ Who Participated in the " ^^ ifo? and Pillaging of Belgium Genr h Afroit Fret Fmy The snine evening we were transported in automobiles and on the eve- atn* of Aug-ast 20, 1914, \ve reached our detachment, which was about 35 miles from the Belgian city of Neuve Chateau. The regiment to which I belonged did not take part in auy operations, after the fall of Liege, but was transported to this par: ot Belgium, Now I learn for the first time how Ifceayy was the loss In my company la the Liege fighting. We lost 187 men fn dead and wounded. This night we slept In an open field. At five o'clock the next morning we marched - again until four o'clock In tbe-afternoon, when ire were given a rest. It was about ten o'clock in the evening when we received orders to advance. W« were all ready to proceed when another order came foe us to remain at our bivouac overnlsht. Dur- 1ns the night we heard thundering of ctmaon \yh:cU became nore violent; The battle of Xcure Ch-itenu. which hud continued from August ±i to August 2-J, 1914, had beguo. At four o'clock crr-Un- moruing of August 22 we resuiset! our march. At Keuve Chateau the Frvnei urmy had encountered the Fourth German urmy. First there was, as alw;\y.;, mif.or ·out- post and patrol 'fighting:. Uy tiud by larger masses of troops -jarUcjipatt'il, and as we tool; our'part *a tho haitie on the evening of Augu^: irJ, the fi^ht had developed into one- »f the ujost sanguinary of the world war. When we arrived the French occupied almost Uirufc-quurrers of the town. The artillery had set the i.v.Un part of Keuve Chateau ca fire tustA only the beautiful residence section iu the western part of tlie city e:;i:;;;ed at Lh;it time, A13 night lrr:~ tl·-· hocso-to- 'hoose fighting continued, let u h e n at noon of August 23 the city ivns in German bauds the enormous co;-.t to tho Germnas could finally be detc-rmlned. Residences, cellars, stree 5 an?l sJde- walks were heaped with Gend and wounded. Tn« hm?rs v^n in ruin-*-' empty sheils, in which bard'.y aayihinz remained aadiimaged thai '-vus ot any .real value. Thousands t( came beggars (n one terrible night. Vomen and children, soldiers end citizens -vere Jy,. ing whore the pitiless she!is und trul- lets httri hurled them frcri life Into death's dark void. Trot* ii.ipartiJiiity reifmod fn rhe kUHnp. Th TV wns a Belglnn woman, to a Hetgiaa baby which she hnd borne "f-oia hmise to street. Close by Jay « n-an of on- certain years before an entity hmi«fr. Both his legs were l-urm il to thp knees. His wife lay cm his l-rt»ast nml 60ll**d so pitifully that hoc pru-f coukl Dot be endured. Most of the dead were entirely or partly buried. The cries of agoay of tlie animals fishdng Inci Deration wery iui;ad w i t h the groans and soblun-g of tli« wjunM«*(L But no one lutcl time to buchtr with them. The French w.*re m:iking another stand, outside the city in rm open field. As tli-e vucniy vacated the inwn the Germans made an error which cost them huiidriKls of lives, Thev Bad occupied the entire town so quickly that the Germao artillery wiii*:h :;hviled :i part of the cUy did pot hno.v of the change in tlie situation and tiirev/ shells into tlie lauks of :.ij? infimtrjr. Filially our sotiiiers were :ompel!ed to give up sumo of their gain.-, by liie pressure of our own as we!i as tiie I-'rencli fire, but regained thi*^ grotiud efterwartls. Strangely onougii, the residence section previously m -utloned had nut-sttffcred serioui'!)'. AJJ Uiu houses flew the lied Cros;; atid^ v.*tre used as temporary hospitals. tlere it was reported ch*t 35etgiaas matilatotl Gertuau soldiers, ^?'heti^er this were true* or only a niiuar, similar to others being constantly starLti by German soldiers, I cannot saj, buc 1 do know tlmt oa Augnst '24, alter tlie French had rented. It was made known through an ^riny ordt-r that German soldiers bad been m;:rdered there, aad that tlie German army could not leuve the scene of the outnigea widioot first aTCOfSng th« victiioe. It was ordered by the e*»insunder of the army to level tlje reinait-der ol the city and to show Go mercy. As we took n short rest froaj our pursuit of the eaemy and looted backward eioods of smoke to the eastward shOB-ed that the order had been executed. A remaining battery of artillery reduced the city to ashes. The French had made a. staal outside the city a£d resisted to thy ut- ino«. but they were outnunibertd. It was simpjy Impossible lo resit c tile pressure .of the Geriaau war machine. When the German colaaios, svlifc l:xcd ^fce*l to the ccctMi-paul- of tiieir btooU-cardiing yells j thetr steel, peaetru,t-d to ] the bonv, they resi-mWcd to. every re- j spect American Indians going Iat- ac- lioa. flinging fbeiasrfves with bioocl- ctLrdting yeiis upou their enerr.ies. ; Alter a three-hoar Sglit msny Fr+-ncii- j uea gave thems*H.ves op sis prisoners. With tiiUfte3 haatts they soight oercy. At liist.. on the nlgit of Aegus: 23 tad 24, the enemy's rests weru tlirj-wji li^o confusion aad they retired sioi'ly. I W33 In Uie first detachment vciitch. pursued tfcera. To the right antJ jeft of £be road, ic fhe field aad ditcies, dcaj nod wounded. Tto* red pafitaJog^ of the Ft^ucb on toe stooQfL '?he '·jrgotten amid the jokes and songs i-f* ft very side. The men were already nccustomod .to the horrors of war to such an extent that they unconcernedly walked over the corpses, not even considering it necessary to mate a slight detobr. At noon we milted and were served with dinner from" the field kitchens. We were surely hungry enough find our canned soup VTUS enten with the utmost relish. Many soldiers set their dishes on the bodies of dead horses lying about and ate "us gayly as if they were at home at their ovm tables. The few huroau corpses near our camp failed to disturb us. Only water was tacking, and after the dinner our Ctifrst liccamc very ncutc, even torturous. We goon marched on, under a burning rnid-tl"- sun. the dust. oC the highway lying thtcfc on our Tinlforras ctnti sfctij. Now, no more chetrfalness vr^3 evident anj-wherc. Our thirst became more uobearahle and we grew weaker from minute to minnto. Many lo mr. miik? fell, unable to KO farther. Notn- lii^r,.rotun!nod for oor commander cnpt to halt, as ho did not wish to er- buuit us alt. As a result of'this halt we wtre left considerably in the rear nml I»st our pluco iraoug those purao- ing the French. About foar o'clock w« finally sa~w before us n village. In the certain cr- pecVition of getting 'water thtre we C'llciiPned our pace- Fugitives and *tnpty munJ tion co]onins piissed as. Among thcra there was a farm wagon upon ivhleh were several c-Ivilinn prls- onorg, aiipnrently franc- th-eurs. A Cr.thoHc priest wns araong tliem. like the ottic-rs, 'nad his homls tied be- hirxl him with a rope. To our curious questions ns to whnt he lisd done, we were told Uiat he had incited tJie fnrmcrs to poisnn tlie water In the village. toon \vc reached the rlllage and attlw ft'-pl well at which we cJgat havesatla- fi^*l our tin ret we found a sentinel posto;!. T!^ ;Irrj7e us away with a witrritit:; that the wnter was polsonetL ri£::T:po!nte«l nod terrtljly embit- tert'd, tho aiildisrs cursed and gnashed ccaM hardly Ibjft diiUacce b«tnreea cs ant] the rttutitliJj: Kceocfa became greater. f)nr 9o(dier» beeanxi happier over the ont- of ii» battie and seeoieU IQ ior- haidshlps. Cursed and Gnash a! Thctc-Te«th. t^icir t#?Ui, TSioy hurried on to the neit welt hut evefy\vlLere seatlnela focbade o\ir caking refreshment. IQ tin open space i n ' t h e center of tbo rillase was a Mg well from \rhieh there cnnie-water clear 03 crystal that emptied into a big trough. Five soldiers stood guard here to see that no one drunk. I -was }\ist about to proceed with my coninulea wiien a terge, part'ut my company threw themselves like Kic-ii possessed onto the well. The guards were completely overcooe and, preedy as animate, ail the men draok. They qaencfaed tbelr thirst, but aat one bet-ame ill. The priest, ns we learned later, was punished beeisse, the officers said, the water ia erery rillage had been poisoned, and we ·were toid that only by a happy ebance bad toe Hv«j o^ our BoUiiera beea ppape/t Tha God o£ toe Germaoa had kept trae feTJard, It appeared, but the God of jhe Bctgiaos was not there to protect: bis. In most of. 9ie piaees we passed ^pe were warned not to use the watep. TJil?, of course, imd rfie effect of hiafe- ing ths soldiers hate.Uic people firtmr v/hom t!uy could espect only death. In this way the vicious instinct! of er men wecf aroused. . ;.-:·;' TiiQ w::ter. of ctrtrcse, vras ao«ttfiEB poisoned, llicse Hes were told -to aro«ye hatred of the.Belgians among our soldiers. In the ovcnln?, at dask, we rested a viUage east of tfee Bcrtriz. 'pliere we found poijipnc'l water ajsw. In tiio mltiOIe ol the viliage a-o bfitted and I could se« tiiio:isii a frr^tt ·windoiv oi a huuse beJore wUcii I stood, la a mis- ec:We h£/tue of n Inborer we saw a woman, ^hesciuog to her children aa if afniid they wonhi be com a.srayfrom her. SudflcnJy a stone as jarsij as a. fist was rurown tb-roush Cbe wjpiiow Into the roon) and a Ucile girl was vroBcdyii on the ri^nt bnn.d. - lu this vflbtge we were bJHetsd 2n a bam. ^'ith sirie cbnsrp.ifes, T went to" the village to buy food. We obtoluea bam h bread and wine at a fa'cmhonse,;,. bnt the people refused any paymeni' f; because they considered us, guests. They only asXcd that we should not hurt them. -We paid them nevertheless Cor^sverything, in German money. There, am everywhere els« we , -went, we fonad the population, ln^ mortal terror of us. The people trembled whenever a' German soldier entered their home. ^ CHAPTER IN. Four oJ^ oa lirifl formed n close friendship. We hod promised to keep together .arid help one another -In every danger. So wo often visited the homes of citiiens together nml did our beat to quiet the harassed peoplo we met and talk them, fat of fear of our forces. Without .exception we found these people friendly 1 and'quick to feel confidence In u« when they Icncneil thnt we roilly were .their friends. It we wroto on their doors with ch«ltev "Bore live good, honest people, please spare them," their gratitude tnew no bound*. U so much bad blood existed ou3 If BO nwiny thicps which led to the military eiBcation of lunuuicraWfr Belgians, It WM because oC tho mlstmst system atl en Ily nourished-on Uie part of tho Gennun officers. That ntffbt we marched on after being Joined by n 2l-centlm*tcr mortar battery of tlie foot artillery regiment No. 0 recently arrlTed. Not .only were w* to net « an auxiliary lor this battery, but vro were also expected to help bring these"Immense cannou into action. These guna were ta two sections, each transported on a wagon pulled by six horses. Theee horses, the only ones used by foot artillery, are sup; posed to bo the finest and most powerful In tlie German army. Tet thefie animals were seldom up to expectations, so that It was a common thEng to detail from 70 to 80 men to assist In transporting'these mortars, and long, heavy ropes were cai^- ried for this purpose. This happened" raost frequently whenever the ping had to be taken off a highway and brought Into a firing position. Soon we arrived at the city of Ber- trlx. We found many houses at the right and left of us burning brightly. They had been set afire, -we learned, because persons In 1 them had fired on passing soldiers. In front of OB« of these bouses was a half-burned man and woman with their fifteen or sixteen-year-old son.-. All.were covered with straw. A little way .farther on,' three more civilians were lying dead In the same street.. ' ' · ' ' · ' , . ' \ As -we were marching we fiw3t3enly. received an order to surround a certain, house at the left' of, us. Our captuia declared that.a shot fired'from" that house had killed a soldier. None of us had beard anything, however. The hoose from which the shot was alleged to hnfe-been' fired ;was BOOO surrounded and hnad creniades thrown "into; It' through the windows; In minute all the codms-wcre aflame, .The air pres: sure from the exploding jjrenaiiea was so jrrcat that doors In the house flew from their hinges and the walla of several roomx wfire cmuhecl, · Almost at the'same time five drU- ians ran Info'.the streets with raised bands. They were aelzed nt once and led before the officers, who constituted themselves Immediately Into n conrt- raartlaL . Tea minutes later sentence hod been wcecnted, and fire men lay on th? prnnnd ^with eyes oandased, riddled with bnficts. In each case star of onr men were always called ' upou to execute one man's sentence. I am sorry to say that I -waa one ol the thirty called upoo at this occaPloa. The condemned mao irho It waa our daty to shoot won itborrt forty years old, tall and straight. He never blinked as the bandage vrtua pat on. He waa !eI to the garden of the boose near by and his back placed to the house. Atter our captain said to as that it was our duty te aim true and.end the tragedy quickly, we took oar position. 1 ; six paces in front of th« condemned man. The aergeatrt commanding as previously gave as Instnic* lions that we were to shoot the condemned men tlirougii the breast Now w« formed Into two rows, one behind the other. The order sounded to load and nim trad we each put fire Riddled With BuUete. cartridges into our rifles. "Prepare 'to fire"--the men in the'first rw koeU down 'and the second row tools their places. Oar. guns were now he^d so .that the barrels were forward" and the bntts were hjp high. ."Aim"--and slowly we almud, holding ^our guas .ttgiitly with the bntts. agafnst o«r shoulders aad our fingers on the triggers. , 'The eecs^nt pansed a halt inlnute aodi then, ocdeced us to. fire, I do not know to this day whether rar victim died at oncti, nor was .therms ever .aa opportunity to ieara how many, of the' six bullets found,theic/mack. · All day I went acound Iflce a man In a trance, reproaching myself bitterly for having' acted the part of executioner. For n long time I could cot bear 'to spenE aboat it to my comrades, ifo'r I felt itj, and £et wbnt.could'we'sbldlers do oflier than, erecuto the ocders-gixen'; " - - · . ; / - . v . TQ BE COWEINDEB. '"'.'.' ^ho to Patronize. · Merchants wKo advertise their, good? The Daily Courier. It will not- be long before you'll be unatjje to buy. such a Bei3 Davenport as this for less (than. $45.00. Our price for a few days only, is ' )3asy terms--so that no one needs to wait and have to pay the higher -price--only-$2.40 'Casb; Tho advanced prices are always In effect in many stores. Prudent penp]vwho recognize the grnat value of a Bed Davenport vrUleLi provides an extra bedroom, "will baslon to take advantage or this low price. This value is all the more remarkable because this-. Bed Davenport ia so constructed Uiat it will accomtnoxlate a thick mattress-instead of a mere davenport pad-a feature that means absolute comfort, and longer li£e to. mattress because the mattress Is not folded but slides up behind the back when the davenport is closed. Its inasglvo oak frauio is beautifully finished and the covering fa of that rich,* golden brown. jiuiutUoa Spanish leather BO serviceable and so fashionable. PLACE VOUH "ORDER NOW AND PROTECT YOURSELF AGAINST ADVANCE IN" PIUCES. Then 50c a week for just a few weelts wil buy this massive bed--but this sensational offer is good for three' days only. We knorc' of no bargain that pleases so many people as this handsome bod. Therefore, as well as making terms so easy Uial everyone can profit by this remarkable offer We JhtaTC cut tlie price for three days onJy, to Our object and .determination is to get .tbe names of a great many more good people on our books, each of whom will ]earn bv experience that it pays in better furnished, more comfortable, more ^attractive bomes 10 have an account at the Rapport-Featherman. Company. THE BED is of massive appearance, light in weight, yet very strong and rigid. The continuous posts measure 2 inches in diameter. It has five vertical fillers, upper and lower cross rods and angle rails in head and foot. You may have your choice of dainty Trhtte enamel or rica satin brass finish, ·The best advice we cac offer you is to come'early. Remember 51-00 will pnt it in your home right away. --but we'll give you one more opportunity to buy one oC these handsome Rockers for oaly--· 11.75 EAST TER5IS, §1.0(1 Cttsh, !0c a Week, You'll wonder, when you see it, bow it can possibly bo Bold for less than 515. It's of that' most fashionable and comfortable design-ia!! overstuffed, with great, broad, full- Epriiig seat and high restful pllloif back, and is covered in rich, golden brown, imitation Spanish leather, now all the rage. DON'T 5HSS IT. You Hear H you near the Columbia GrafonoJa before yon purchase a Phonograph, you'll be delighted. Cut if you do not hear it until after you've purchased some other Phonograph you'll be tlie sorriest person on earth. No other instrument satisfies a person when once they have sat and listened to the superior life- tone of a Columbia Grafonola. $1.50 A WEEK and no'inierest charges at the Rapport - Featherman Company puts this Columbia Grafono]a with 32 -selections in your home for only-- Other Xotfels as low ns $18.00. COMPARISON ALWAYS PROVE - "YOU'LL BO BETTER" AT i)onnellsvUle's Most Dependable Furniture Store. FREE WAR GARDEN PRIMER 32. Pages Fully Illustrated for Every Reader Q£ The Daily Courier We have arranged wllli tho National War Garden Commission, Maryland Building, Washington, D. C., for you to get this Tree garden book of instruction on how to plant" and cultivate a garden. Send this coupon and a two. cent stamp for postage NOW to ft'ATIONAl WAB GARDES COMMISSION Maryland Building, . Washington, I). C. . Hcrawith two cent atflrau for postage for which please, send me your war garden book free Namo . Street State -PLAN to PLANT and WIN'the WAR ; r'and In the- test ol health. Hale and' liearty, frith good, red blocfi, t good appetite ana good digestion. Grandpa's nerves ' ere steady, too. He takes care of himself. He keeps hlmsslf nt. He sees to It that his nerves and blood · are-In g-ood shape. When he finds . that he Is cfctlnK' without relish, feel- ·tcE ft little dtpresaed and cross, ·leepy all day yet etui not sleep* at night, he begins hie trentment 'of ' 'BiQ-eren, the nerve ELnd blood*tonic. "Eio-i'eren, a coropounS of X*ccith!n, Iron PapLono-te and other valuable tonic elements In tablet form,' la just exactly what tlie average tired busl- '· ntsa mail, the averajja bouStlLecper needs at ihls season of tho year. It -Try Our Classified Ads* r p ff- tones tlie nerves and puts vigor and energy Into the system. There. Is no mystery about EJo- teren. Evnry. jiackase ahoira Just exactly the content. Ask your doctor a bout;. Bio-Tor en, or, it you wiifr, send us his namo and we -will forward him the-bdmplete formula. Grve Blorieren. a lair trial. If if don't ir.ak"e good your money VlII ba pleaimntly returned to you. Inter- estlhtf booklet \vlll ba moJled you on request. 1-a.rce pacliago Sl.OD at all {rood dru^^.'sta or direct If your druggist con't handle, it. Tho Scnfint;] Kenx- ediea Co., Cincinnati, Ohio. off?' LEAVES-NO AFTjER-EFFECTS EXCEPT^iEALTH ALL. DRUGGISTS-LARGE PACKAGE $!*« '"^j-iKi-i^.

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