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Mustard Gas Versus Cloud Gas

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Mustard Gas Versus Cloud Gas

He was using what we call “mustard gas” poisoning because it was something like mustard and it was, he was using that. And you see that was against the rules of warfare, the Germans as well as the British and the Americans had signed a contract not to resort to gas poisoning, but the Germans of course soon gave that up. On one occasion they used cloud gas and the wind changed and turned the gas right back on the Germans themselves. That was one experience that we rejoiced over, you see. That was what we called cloud gas, but the shell gas of course were gas shells, fired gas shells that just blew the head off them and the gas was released. But the trouble is you can't fight with gas masks on you got to take them off. They were packed inside and you had to take them off. All right if you were inactive, there was no fighting going on you could wear a gas mask, but if there was any action, off would have to come the gas mask.

Mr. Boyce discusses the difference between cloud gas and mustard gas, which was delivered by artillery shell. He describes the futility of trying to wear a gas mask in a combat situation.

Harry Boyce

Harry Boyce was born in Bonshaw, Prince Edward Island on September 4, 1893. After moving to Regina to work as an architect, he returned to P.E.I. to enlist with the 8th Canadian Siege Battery. He trained in Charlottetown then went overseas and continued his training at Aldershot, England, where he specialized on the 8-inch siege gun, which fired a 200 pound shell. In the autumn of 1915 he was sent to France and served during the Somme, Vimy Ridge and Le Preol. He was gassed and repatriated to Canada.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Harry Boyce
War, Conflict or Mission:
First World War
Warrant Officer

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