Subscribe to the newsletter and get Edwardian-themed news delivered straight to your inbox!

Great War

The Christmas Truce

by

wwi christmas truce

Christmas Eve, darkness fell at about 7 pm on a long line of trenches held, on the one side, by a body of Saxon troops, on the other by the Leicestershire Regiment, the London Rifle Brigade, and some other British units. With it came a sudden calm. The German snipers seemed to have disappeared, and then, the sound of carol-singing rose from the trenches, and at that the British snipers in turn ceased firing. The Germans invited the English out, and very soon, fires and candles were burning along the parapets hitherto guarded with ceaseless vigilance, and the men were fraternizing in a crowd between them, exchanging gifts and experiences, and agreeing that the truce should continue ’til midnight of Christmas Day. Christmas Day passed in burying the dead, whose bodies lay in scores between the trenches; in carol-singing, each side cheering for the other; and in a football match, which the Saxons won.

great war christmas truceFurther Reading:
Silent Night: The story of the World War One Christmas Truce by Stanley Weintraub
The Christmas Truce
The Christmas Truce of 1914
Foes in Trenches Swap Pies for Wines (NYT)
Letters written by participants in the truce
Listen online – The Story of the Unofficial Christmas Truce of WW I – The American Storyteller Radio Journal
Letters to The Times from participants in 1914 truce
The Heritage Of The Great War article: Demystifying the Christmas Truce
Christmas Truce 90th Anniversary article
Chap.8 of Bullets & Billets

Armistice Day

by

armistice-signed WAR ENDS AT SIX O’CLOCK THIS MORNING
The State Department in Washington Made the Announcement at :45 o’Clock

ARMISTICE WAS SIGNED IN FRANCE AT MIDNIGHT

WASHINGTON, Monday, Nov 11, 2:48 AM–The armistice between Germany, on the one hand, and the allied Governments and the United States, on the other, has been signed.
New York Times

——–

NEWS OF ARMISTICE FLASHED TO CITY; Signing of Truce Tidings Wafted Afar by Searchlight on Times Building. CROWDS GATHER IN STREETSWhistles Throughout City Proclaim
Glad News, and Thousands Awake to Get the Tidings.

Nov 11, 1918, Monday

When the first bulletin of the signing of the armistice, with the acceptance of tarmistice_day_wall_streethe terms of the Allies, came into the office of THE NEW YORK TIMES shortly before 3 o’clock this morning orders were given immediately for the lighting up of both The Times Building and The Times Annex, and they remained lighted throughout the rest of the hours of darkness.
New York Times

In remembrance for troops of all nationalities and ethnicities who fought in the Great War ninety years ago.