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The tanks were feasible

First World War Audio Archive

The tanks were feasible

Another thing in the Battle of Amiens that we, it was the first

WW1 Tank travelling on road as soldiers look on.

time that we ever saw our tanks in action. They had come in

Tank crossing smokey field.

in the Battle of the Somme, but I, we had never, they proved

Soldiers and tanks in the battle field.

so clumsy, and one thing or another, they couldn’t use them

A row of tanks.

there. The Germans used to shoot the steering apparatus off

Tank towing a trailer slowly across a field.

and you had one wheel behind arrangement to steer by. Well, then they changed that and just steered by the tracks. So in the Battle of Amiens so many of each company were detailed to, six men, I think it was, from each company went into that particular tank and travelled with the, travelled with the tank

Picture of Soldiers marching by a tank and dead comrade.

so that when they reached their objective, these infantry men would leave the tank and hold the line until the rest of us

A great number of Soldiers running across field.

got up. And this was a system that was used in the Battle of Amiens to considerable success too. It proved to the authorities that, actually, the tanks were feasible.

Soldier approaching a tank with its gun visible.

Now, eventually they improved considerable in World War Two. But that type of tank had the track all around the outside. He watched them fire, they had 6 pounder guns, I think they

More fotage of tanks through smoke.

were, one on each turret, on the right and left. They had a turret on the side of the tank, where they fired a six pounder gun and the machine guns in the front. They were quite effective when they went up to a machine gun, because the

A member of a Machine Gun crew is hit while the other continues shooting at a tank.

machine gun bullets wouldn’t have any effect on them.

Ground view of the tracks of a tank.


Mr. MacLeod describes the relative effectiveness of newer tracked tanks in the Amiens offensive, both as a troop transport and as a weapon against German machine gun emplacements.

James Neil MacLeod

James Neil MacLeod was born on November 12, 1899. Left school to enlist in Sherbrooke, Quebec, on December 10, 1915. Mr. MacLeod was a member of the 117th Battalion in Canada and England, joining the 24th Battalion for his tour of duty in Europe. He participated in many major battles: Arras, Vimy, Amiens, Somme and Michael Offensive. He was wounded in the elbow August 27, 1918. After his discharge, Mr. MacLeod lived in Quebec, moved to New York state to work for the New York Central Railroad. Married Mae R. Mulvaney in 1927. Mr. MacLeod died June 8, 1981.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
James Neil MacLeod
War, Conflict or Mission:
First World War
117th Battalion

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