One hundred years ago on 8 November 1917
31st Battery, Canadian Field Artillery, Canadian Expeditionary Force was a sub-unit of the 9th Canadian Field Artillery Brigade in the 3rd Canadian Division. The 9th Brigade war diary records:
Visibility good in the morning and fair in the afternoon. The enemy's aeroplanes were again quite active. At 7.00 am six GOTHAs were over and dropped bombs near the OXFORD DUMP and along roads approaching YPRES. At 2.00 pm another six planes flew over our battery positions in the vicinity of KANSAS CROSSROADS, and dropped a considerable number of bombs. Later in the afternoon a flight of sixteen planes crossed our lines and flew to the rear areas about YPRES, many encounters took place during the day. In reply to our morning barrage the enemy's retaliation was heavy. During the forenoon he was quite active on our batteries causing a number of casualties. Capt. E.V. Thompson of the 33rd Battery was wounded but remained on bty.
Operation Order #123 was issued today, giving details for Attack (9).
3rd Canadian Divisional Artillery war diary records:
CANAL BANK YPRES - Artillery boundaries were changed in accordance with O.O.153. Enemy aeroplanes were very active during the night, dropping bombs on rear areas. Artillery activity was much below normal. Some of our batteries have commenced to move forward and build new positions, O.O. 153; and it is probable the enemy is also on the move. Visibility good, and in consequence, aerial activity was very much above normal.
NO. OF GUNS IN ACTION – 69 18-pdrs. 21 4.5” Howrs
AMMUNITION EXPENDED – A.2401 – AX.921 – BX .1053
5th Canadian Siege Battery, Canadian Artillery, Canadian Expeditionary Force was a sub-unit of 1st Canadian Heavy Artillery Group. Their war diary records:
YPRES - At 4.30.a.m. we received an S.O.S. call which was immediately responded to but “cease fire” was given after the 6th Round.
At 5.a.m. went into action again on barrage which continued until 5.48.a.m. 48 Rounds being fired.
At 11.45a.m. we started a shoot by aeroplane observation on Farm at V24b 25.95. This shoot was unsuccessful on account of poor visibility. bursts could not be observed and shoot had to be abandoned. 30Rounds were fire only 14 of which were observed.
3.05.p.m. fired 13 Rounds on barrage in areas V29b 73.52 to V24b 00.15
4.5.p.m. to 4.10p.m. we opened up in bursts of fire on areas V29b 98.60 and V24d 60.45. 23 Rds being fired
Hostile shelling was practically Nil, only an odd shell falling near the position.
General Officer Commanding, Royal Artillery, Canadian Corps war diary records:
IN THE FIELD - Art'y Order #104 issued. Medium and heavy hows. and field art'y placed preparatory barrages. Buildings, etc. were also engaged. Counter btys.: two successful destructive shoots, 42 hostile btys. harassed and eight gas concentrations placed on same. Hostile art'y: night below normal; day, normal, bulk of the fire being placed on our bty. positions.
15th Field Artillery Regiment RCA perpetuates the following sub units:
31st Battery, Canadian Field Artillery, Canadian Expeditionary Force,
5th Canadian Siege Battery, Canadian Artillery, Canadian Expeditionary Force,
68th Battery, Canadian Field Artillery, North Russia Expeditionary Force, was not authorized to be formed until 3 August 1918, and
85th Battery, Canadian Siberian Expeditionary Force was not authorized to be formed until 12 July 1918.
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