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Battle of the Somme

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  1. Battle of the Somme July 1,1916 – November 18,1916 November 18, 1916 July 1st 1916 By: Thomson, Omade, Ben, Gavin

  2. Cause of the Battle • Ruin German defences in the south where French are fighting Germans in Verdun • Help the French by Germans transferring troops from Verdun to Somme so the French would have less soldiers to fight • British were hoping to divert German troops and supplies from the bloodbath at Verdun This map shows where the British and French were Fighting

  3. Through British Eyes • British had a plan called “The Big Push” • German line was guarded by trenches, miles of barbed wires and hundreds of machine guns • British thought colossal firepower would smash through any obstacle • Idea came from French commander Joseph Joffre • Attack accepted by General sir Douglas Haig of the British Expeditionary Force

  4. Plan • Eight-Day preliminary bombardment starting the 24th of June • Below barrage, British planted 21 mines in tunnels that were secretly dug out for months • Bombardment would destroy barbed wires, most German Artillery and kill or wound some soldiers • After, British soldiers would walk across no man’s land • Take possessions of German front lines • Fight off any remaining Germans

  5. Start of the Battle • 7:20 am July 1st 17 mines exploded alerting the Germans • Bombardment has failed and only alerted the Germans the French are coming • Germans were in their dugouts, safe from their bombardments • War started at 7:30 am, 10 minute delay because the mines did not blow up/destroy all the barbed wires • 10 minute delay allowed Germans to prepare November 18, 1916 July 1st 1916 One of the British mines that blew up in German Territory First day of Battle

  6. July 1st,1916 • Many men walked slowly across No Man’s Land • British men had to walk uphill so easy targets for Germans • Easy target for German machine-gunner • British and French troops getting mowed down • British had to keep fighting at the Somme because the French were still struggling in Verdun • 20’000 British troops died that day • Little progress was made on the first day November 18, 1916 July 1st 1916 The British troops walking across No Man’s Land First day of Battle

  7. Newfoundland Regiment • Newfoundland Regiment moved off at 9:15am • Newfoundlanders objective, first and second line of enemy trenches • Started dying, not many at first • More and more dying as they approach first gap in their own wire • Waves and waves of soldiers started dying by German machine-gunner • Over at 9:45 • Attack failed, 710 soldiers killed, missing, or wounded in less than 30 minutes

  8. September, 1916 • Early September, French Tenth Army joined the attack • Battle of Flers-Courcelette started 15th of September • Tanks were introduced during this battle • Tanks rolled out at 6:20am • Surprised the Germans • 50 tanks in total and only 24 participating tanks due to mechanical issues • Captured Courcelette and Martinpuich • Gained under a kilometre of land September 15, 1916 November 18, 1916 July 1st 1916 First day of Battle Tanks were introduced

  9. September, 1916 Cont. British tanks rolled out in September 15. September 29, 1916 newspaper article from Essex Free Press

  10. Weapons • Tanks • For first time in WW1, tanks were used in Somme • Needed 3 crew men to operate • Very slow, maximum speed is 3 mph • Could not go over trenches • Machine Guns • Needed 4-6 men to operate • Had to be put in flat surface • 1 machine gun had the fire power of 100 guns • Used by both Germans and British Gas-masked men of the British Machine Gun Corps with a Vickers machine gun

  11. October/November, 1916 • French forces were gaining ground in Verdun • November, 13 BEF (British Expeditionary Forces) attempted final effort in Battle of the Ancre • Went very well • Captured field fortress of Beaument-Hamel September 15, 1916 November 18, 1916 November 13, 1916 October 1916 July 1st 1916 First day of Battle Tanks were introduced Captured Beaument-Hamel French gaining ground in Verdun

  12. Battle of the Somme ending • Battle ended due to the weather • One of the coldest years in France • Snow stopped Somme offensive at November 18th • British gained 6 km of ground but at a great cost • 420’000 British Casualties • 200’000 French Casualties • 500’000 German Casualties

  13. Timeline September 15, 1916 November 18, 1916 November 13, 1916 October 1916 July 1st 1916 End of Battle First day of Battle Tanks were introduced Captured Beaument-Hamel French gaining ground in Verdun

  14. Bibliography • http://news2.ourontario.ca/93370/page/3?n=3&q=battle%20of%20the%20somme&docid=OOI.93370 - newspaper • Brown, Malcolm. The Imperial War Museum Book of the Somme. London: Pan Books, 1997. Book • Brocklehurst, Ruth, and Henry Brook. The Usborne Introduction to the First World War. London: Usbourne, 2007. Book • http://www.historyonthenet.com/WW1/weapons.htm - website • http://rfrazer.homestead.com/files/somme-attackfilm.jpg - picture no mans land • http://www.history.army.mil/documents/wwi/82div/map1.JPG - map picture • http://www.aaia.com.au/pedro/ww1/mine.jpg - Hawthorn Crater Explosion • http://wio.ru/tank/ww1t/mark1.jpg - Tank picture • http://www.independent.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00260/Pg-02-Great-War-2-g_260718s.jpg - Machine gun picture • Duffy, Michael. "First World War.com - Battles - The Battle of the Somme, 1916." First World War.com - A Multimedia History of World War One. Firstworldwar, 22 Aug. 2009. Web. 05 Oct. 2011. <http://www.firstworldwar.com/battles/somme.htm>.