"Down in a shell crater. We fought like Kilkenny Cats" -Battle of Cambrai


"Down in a shell crater. We fought like Kilkenny Cats" -Battle of Cambrai

Alternative Title

"Down in a shell crater. We fought" -Battle of Cambrai


This terrible war, started by Germany in her mad lust for empire, abounded in situations which tried men's souls to the limit and called for the exertion of every ounce of courage and resolution they possessed. This was one of those occasions. In the ebb and flow of battle, deafened by the explosion of great shells, blinded by fog and smoke, stifled by sulphurous fumes, men became separated from their commands, lost their sense of direction and often took refuge in shell craters such as this, from the hail of machine gun bullets whipping over the surface of the ground. Sometimes isolated German soldiers blundered into craters held by our own men. Swift combat instantly flared up, bomb and bayonet did their deadly work, quarter was neither asked nor given. The battle of Cambrai was in some respects the most dramatic of the war. There, for the first time in history, the dazed Germans saw whole squadrons of huge ironclad monsters like the one lying disabled in the background, come lurching and sprawling upon them, tearing into shreds their vaunted barb wire defenses, crashing over the trenches, flattening out concrete "pill boxes" and the machine guns inside. Through the gaps made by these juggernauts came British soldiery, horse and foot, shooting, cutting, and bombing. No surprise was ever more complete or more disastrous. German soldiers crawled out of their deep dugouts by the thousand, their eyes blinking with sleep in the early dawn, and by thousands were they shot down or captured.

Spatial Coverage



1 stereograph : b&w
1 gelatine silver print stereograph (8 x 15 cm) mounted on card (9 x 18 cm)


Copyright. The Keystone View Company
No known restrictions on publication


World War through the stereoscope

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Keystone View Company, “"Down in a shell crater. We fought like Kilkenny Cats" -Battle of Cambrai,” Monash Collections Online, accessed May 28, 2024, https://repository.erc.monash.edu/items/show/25407.

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