Feather Beds and Waffles

August 21, 1918 – Full diary entry:

“Rec’d 2 more letters from Nora. Wrote one to her.

It is very quiet here. Nothing of importance.”

Charles B. Hoyt, in Heroes of the Argonne, An Authentic History of the Thirty-Fifth Division, provides a useful perspective on the time spent by the 35th in the trenches. As Robert has reported, this was not an especially active or strategically important front. Whether Robert knew it or not, this month in the trenches represented another month of training – even though the era of trench warfare was coming to an end. From Hoyt:

The value of the training in the Vosges to every branch of service in the division  must be measured more by the atmosphere of war it gave them rather than by the actual benefits of the training. For what the infantry learned of trench warfare was of no practical use to it in carrying on the open tactics of the Argonne…

The importance of the Vosges sector for training was that it also gave to the Thirty-Fifth those conditions under which war must be carried on. Feather beds and waffles for breakfast, they learned, were not a part of it. The civilian mind, even with a year’s training, does not easily adapt itself to the requirements of a soldier at war. These necessities life on the Vosges sector helped to emphasize.


Where was Robert today? See the timeline.

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