Curt Mainville


In October 1915, during only their second tour of the front line, New Brunswick’s 26th Battalion conducted a reconnaissance-in-force upon a recently detonated German mine in front of their firing trench. The “crater fight,” as it has come to be known, resulted in twenty-one dead and thirty-six wounded but was portrayed as a success. But how much of what was printed in local newspapers was true? Official reports and personal accounts were engaging, idealistic and emotive. They were also highly exaggerated. This was the genesis of the “myth of the war experience”—a marriage of both fact and fiction that reflected multiple (and sometimes conflicting) points of view and satisfied competing personal, military, social and political interests.