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The Communication Trench


The Communication Trench is a collection of articles written by Will Bird for a number of magazines and journals in 1933. This now rare book, privately published in 1934, contains many stories, often humorous, and a variety of statistics revealing much surprising information about the Great War.Will Bird was an important personality in the veterans’ movement. In 1931 Will revisited the Old Front and wrote a series of articles for Maclean’s magazine. His series was an immediate success and Will became a symbol for the old veterans, who felt their exploits and sacrifices were already being forgotten. He became a popular speaker at events across the country, where he would show his slides, exchange stories and reminiscences with his comrades, then in the their 40s and 50s. It was from these experiences that he put together the articles for The Communication Trench.

Bird, of Amherst, Nova Scotia, was no stranger to the Great War experience. He had served from 1916-1919 with the 42nd Battalion, The Black Watch of Canada, and fought at Vimy, Passchendaele, Amiens, Arras, and Cambrai. During the capture of Mons on the last night of the War, Corporal Bird was awarded the Military Medal for Bravery, Will Bird died in 1984.

By Will R. Bird