Survival Guide to the Trenches of WWI ethan groff

Gas Mask

Soldier of WWI with a gas mask for protection in battle by Luz28 is licensed by the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication

During World War I a gas mask was a must needed to live, especially to live a more normal life after the war. Even though the use of gasses was outlawed since 1889, that did not stop the Germans from using it against the enemy forces. The gasses were very deadly and caused great psychological horrors to a human, consisting of insanity, blindness, breathing problems, or burning ("Apocalypse"). A gas mask is crucial for keeping in the fresh air and avoiding the poisonous gasses launched into the trenches by the enemy.

Entrenching Tool

Entrenching Tool by Andshel is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International

In the trenches of the war it is also crucial to have an entrenching tool to dig a trench for yourself. During World War I the weaponry became even more advanced and even more deadly for the old strategies that generals tried to use ("Apocalypse"). The entrenching tool was used a basic trench digging tool that made a shallow ditch for protection against bullets and shrapnel of the much more advanced weaponry. It was also used as a weapon in close combat ("10 Things").

Steel Helmet

Steel Helmet by Daderot is licensed under the Public Domain

The steel helmet is also a needed item if you with to survive in the trenches of the war. Most of World War I was spent in trenches that made the head of a soldier one of the most vulnerable parts. Shrapnel and bullets would fly passed and into the trenches that a soldier might stick his head out and into. The steel helmets were still able to be penetrated by the weaponry, however the steel helmet gave the soldier a much higher chance of surviving what hit him ("10 Things").

Dry or New Pairs of Boots

Army boots by Liftarn is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License

It may seem like a silly needed item for a big war, but boots were very crucial. Soldiers were in the trenches for very long periods of time. They were exposed to weather such as rain, that flooded them, mixing in with the soil. Soldiers would walk in these trenches everyday, in the cold mud and damp ground ("Life"). They developed numbness in the foot that they called trench foot, which normally resulted in an amputation of most of the leg ("What Was It Like").

Playing Cards

Playing Cards by Sal Southard is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License

Like the dry or new pair of boots, you may think this item is a joke or not necessary. However this is a must for being in the trenches. With little or no movement from the opposing forces, who are also hiding in trenches, there is a lot of extra time with nothing to do. Soldiers were often consumed with such boredom, that insanity was a problem. Playing cards would help to take up time with nothing else to do, and to socialize with other soldiers suffering the same thing ("Apocalypse").

Works Cited

Apocalypse WWI: Episode 3. Apocalypse: World War I. CC&C, n.d. Web. 23 Mar. 2017.

InspirEd. Life in the Trenches. 2004.

“10 Things That Could Have Saved Your Life in the Trenches.” Imperial War Museums, IWM, 2016, www.iwm.org.uk/history/10-things-that-could-have-saved-your-life-in- the-trenches. Accessed 27 Mar. 2017.

“What Was It like in a World War I Trench.” BBC Bitesize, BBC, 2017, www.bbc.co.uk/guides/z8sssbk#zwcccdm. Accessed 27 Mar. 2017.

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