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Clayton M. Sherwood:
Diary of Foreign Service, August 1917 to February 1919


Thanks are expressed to online correspondent Arthur Dykes for providing a number of clarifications and corrections to specific abbreviations and various references throughout the entire text.

– Absent without leave or permission.

B.C. – Battery commander or control.

- Lodging for troops. A written order directing that such lodging be provided.

– Derogatory term for Germans.

– A group of temporary billets for troops.

– Parasitic insects, usually lice, found externally on the body.

- The selection of one or more troops for a particular duty, usually a fatigue duty; the personnel so selected; also, the duty assigned.

- A board or boardwalk laid across wet or muddy ground or flooring.

- A pit dug into the ground or on a hillside and used as a shelter.

F.A. – Field Artillery.

– Manual or menial labor, such as barracks cleaning, assigned to soldiers.

– Clothing worn by military personnel for labor or for field duty.

– A specified arrangement or deployment, as of troops for inspection.

– Any of several machines or devices, especially a machine for hoisting or moving heavy objects such as the cannon mentioned here.

H.M.O. – Heavy marching order.

– A hard biscuit or bread made with only flour and water.

– Derogatory term for Germans.

– Derogatory term for Germans.

or kitchen police – Enlisted military personnel assigned to work in a kitchen. Also, military duty assisting cooks.

lachrymose gas
– tear gas

– Leggings; stocking-like garments worn on the legs and tied to the short trousers.

– A large flat-bottomed barge, especially one used to deliver or unload goods to or from a cargo ship or transport goods over short distances.

– Machine gun.

– An amount of food, as for a meal, course, or dish. Also, a serving of soft, semiliquid food.

mess hall
– Building where food is served.

– Often a building or group of buildings equipped with machinery for processing raw materials into finished or industrial products, often referred to here as a punishment detail for unruliness or other offenses.

mustard gas
– An oily, volatile liquid, (ClCH2CH2)2S, corrosive to the skin and mucous membranes. It causes severe, sometimes fatal respiratory damage. It was introduced in World War I as a chemical warfare agent.

– A gathering, especially of troops, for service, inspection, review or roll call. The people assembled for such a gathering.

– Naval Artillery.

O.D. – Officer of the day, in charge of guards on duty.

quartermaster – An officer responsible for the food, clothing, and equipment of troops.

retreat – Withdrawal of a military force from a dangerous position or from an enemy attack. The signal for such withdrawal. A bugle call or drumbeat signaling the lowering of the flag at sunset, as on a military base. The military ceremony of lowering the flag.

reveille – The sounding of a bugle early in the morning to awaken and summon people in a camp or garrison. The first military formation of the day. A signal to get out of bed.

S.A. – A Salvation Army charitable support service site.

slum or slumgullion – A thin stew of meat and vegetables.

– Cover for straw mattress.

Y.M.C.A. – A Young Men’s Christian Association charitable support service site.

Original text © 2002-2005 by MysteryVisits.com, Willowshade, West Grove, PA


Foreword and Summary

August 1917 | September 1917 | October 1917
November 1917 | December 1917

January 1918 | February 1918 | March 1918 | April 1918
May 1918 | June 1918 | July 1918 | August 1918
September 1918 | October 1918 | November 1918 | December 1918

January 1919 | February 1919

Battle analysis | THIS PAGE: DEFINITIONS | Names | Family

© 2002-2004 by MysteryVisits.com, Willowshade, West Grove, PA

Note: This project may be reproduced only with written permission from its preparers. Because this is a work in progress, additions, suggestions, challenges, corrections and explanations are necessary, requested – and welcomed. Send them to John C. Sherwood or visit MysteryVisits.com.

This World War I diary has been archived at ...

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List of memoirs via WWI.com

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