Diary of John Henry Fisher

Title in English
Diary of John Henry Fisher

John Henry Fisher was conscripted at the age of 37 to the 13th Infantry Labour Corps of the Lincolnshire Regiment. He was married with two children, Jack and Gladys and was employed as a clerk at Tetley's Brewery in Leeds. Within two weeks of being called up in March 1917 he was in France working behind the Front Line in the Arras area. His job was to ensure equipment and resources got to the soldiers who were fighting on the Front Line. This included loading shells in to cases which were then loaded on to wagons to be taken to the Front Line, and then unloading the wagons on their return. He was engaged in much dangerous work including the testing of gas masks. Whilst working here he witnessed the Canadians taking Vimy Ridge and saw German prisoners being marched back through his village. In September 1917 he was moved to the Ypres area of Flanders and was now attached to the Royal Artillery Garrison. Work continued to supply the Front Line with equipment under the constant shelling from "Fritz". He also worked on digging trenches, laying barbed wire, concreting dug outs, clearing the Menin Road and working on the light railway at Sanctuary Wood. He had some narrow escapes and was invalided twice to hospital: once with dysentery and secondly with an injured hand which resulted in him being sent back home on sick leave. Even on Armistice Day he was out working building a railway bridge and dangerous work continued digging up mines the Germans had laid under the railway lines during their retreat. The men who served in the Labour Corps did essential logistic work during the war and yet are very much overlooked and forgotten. They served unarmed and frequently within the range of the German guns undertaking a wide range of menial, hard and dangerous tasks. They experienced the same sights and sounds of the fighting soldiers and I believe it is important to tell the stories of their experiences so we may appreciate the "behind the scenes" activities during the Great War and give these men the recognition and thanks they so rightly deserve. John Henry Fisher survived the war and died peacefully at home at the age of 77. John Henry Fisher was my Great GrandFather. I was always led to believe that no one in my family had fought in World War 1 and yet this diary reveals that although he did not fight he was certainly there and very much involved in the hell of Flanders of 1917 - 1918.

Summary description of items
Diary of John Henry Fisher. Photographs of John Henry Fisher and his wife.

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Number of items
John Henry Fisher
Born: February 15, 1880 in Leeds
Origin date
1917 – Dec, 1918
Artillery, Gas Warfare, Recruitment and Conscription, Transport
Western Front
Areas of Arras, France and Ypres, Flanders
Jeanette Payne
Collection day
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    Diary of John Henry Fisher

    Areas of Arras, France and Ypres, Flanders

    Diary of John Henry Fisher

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