Now all roads lead to France and heavy is the tread
Of the living; but the dead returning lightly dance.
Edward Thomas, Roads

Sunday, September 13, 2020

An Outstanding Trench Art Specimen


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Above are two images of a German 77mm shell casing turned into a memento of the battle for Montfaucon. One side has been inscribed with "Montfaucon 1918" and the Corps of Engineers castle insignia in relief on an embossed background. The reverse is decorated with "304th E." [Engineer Regiment] and the badge of its parent formation, James M. Cain's 79th Division (a Cross of Lorraine within a shield) on an embossed background. Cain mentions these engineers several times in his account. This specimen is from the collection of trench art expert and author Jane Kimball. She has published an outstanding source book on her specialty, Trench Art: An Illustrated History.


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