Elsie and Mairi Go to War

Elsie and Mairi Go to War

Two Extraordinary Women on the Western Front

Book - 2010
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When they met at a motorcycle club in 1912, Elsie Knocker was a thirty-year-old divorcee, and Mairi Chisholm was a brilliant eighteen-year old mechanic living at home. In 1914, they roared off to London "to do their bit" for the war effort, and within a month they were in Belgium driving ambulances. Frustrated by men dying of shock in their vehicles, they set up their own first-aid post on the front line in the village of Pervyse, near Ypres, risking their lives under sniper fire and heavy bombardment. As news of their courage and expertise spread, the "Angels of Pervyse" became celebrities.
Publisher: New York : Pegasus Books : Distributed by W.W. Norton & Co., 2010
Edition: 1st Pegasus Books cloth ed
ISBN: 9781605980942
Call Number: 940.4754 At545e
Characteristics: 280 p., [16] p. of plates : ill., maps ; 24 cm


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Sep 27, 2014

Elsie Knocker and Mairi Chisholm shared a love for the thrill of motorbikes. When war was declared in August 1914, the friends zoomed off to London together to do their bit. ‘Their bit’ was to establish a nursing station close to the front, give the first line of care to wounded soldiers, and transport them by ambulance to field hospitals. Nicknamed the Angels of Pervyse, they were decorated for bravery and sacrifice, and were amongst the most famous women of World War 1.

Their courageous work deserves recognition in all its aspects. This book gives only a partial view. And where was the editor? Rambling, disjointed sentences make parts of the book hard to follow. Worth a read to learn about women's role in the war, but it will leave you wanting more.


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