This account was actually written in Mesopotamia in 1917, and the author was so imbued with a sense of security that while he states it is the story of the 2nd Battalion, he does not say which regiment nor does he identify the division to which his battalion belonged. He does name the officers and the CO (A.G.Wauchope) and from this information it can be said that the regiment is the Black Watch. When war broke out the battalion was in India, where it had been since the end of the Boer War, stationed in Bareilly and on mobilization it formed part of the Bareilly Brigade of the 7th (Meerut) Division and went to France with the Indian Corps, landing in France in October 1914. At the end of 1915 the Indian Corps was withdrawn from France and sent to Mesopotamia where the battalion arrived on the last day of 1915; before the week was out it was in action at Shaikh Saad (6th-8th Jan ‘16)where it had some 60 killed, the Official History speaks of 400 casualties in the battalion.
This account covers about 18 months, to the capture of Samarrah on 24th April 1917 when the winter campaign of 1916-17 came to an end. There are not many battalion histories dealing solely with the war in Mesopotamia (there was only one British division in that theatre, the 13th) and that makes this narrative interesting, not only from the point of view of the numerous actions in which the battalion was involved, but also because of the descriptions of the country, the inhabitants and the conditions in which they fought – the casualty lists shows disease, heat stroke and suffocation among the causes of death. Two of the chapters consist of articles written by the CO. The full casualty roll of the other ranks is given from 1st Jan ‘16 to 15th Jun ‘17 with the names arranged in regimental number order, starting with 72 Sgt T.Archer. It shows the date, cause and place of death and place of burial; many of these are shown as on the battlefield with grid reference (remember this was written in 1917). There is also a full list of officers who served in the battalion showing in each case dates of movements such as date and place of embarkation and disembarkation, date of an y casualty.
WITH A HIGHLAND REGIMENT (2nd Battalion The Black Watch ) IN MESOPOTAMIA
The story of the 2nd Battalion The Black Watch in the Mesopotamian campaign where it served from January 1916 to December 1917. Roll of Honour gives details of date, place, nature of death and place of burial. Service record of all officers of the battalion who served in Mesopotamia.