- Sambre-Oise Canal
The Sambre-Oise Canal (French: "Canal de la Sambre à l'Oise") is located in northern
France. It forms a connection between the river Sambre(Meuse basin) at Landreciesand the Oise ( Seinebasin) at Tergnier. The canal is 71 km long, and has 38 locks. It is only suited for small boats, maximum length 38.5 m.
World War I battle
The Sambre-Oise Canal saw one of the last
Alliedvictories of World War I.
The forcing of the Sambre-Oise Canal took place on
November 4, 1918. Participating in the operation were the 2nd Battalion Royal Sussex, as well as the 2nd Manchesters, to which the poet Wilfred Owenbelonged. The Lancashire Fusiliersalso took part in the battle. The British forces were to cross some fields surrounded by high hedges, then cross the canalat a point where there was a lockhouse. The Germans had this area defended with machine guns and rifleteams.
As the 2nd Battalion advanced on the canal, the
Royal Engineersplaced small footbridges across the lock. Some Royal Sussex Regiment men actually climbed up onto the lock gates, one of them firing his Lewis gunfrom the hip as he went. Eventually the British managed to take the lockhouse and pushed on to their final objective near the Etreuxroad.
The officer and poet
Wilfred Owenwas killed as he crossed the Sambre-Oise Canal at the head of a raiding party. Owen's death occurred only a week before the war ended.
Battle of the Sambre (1918)
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