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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Daily Herald (Newspaper) - April 4, 1918, Lethbridge, Alberta if' In the Vicinity of Ae Big Ge^iiisui Driver-Allies Steadfast A / * J -MY up* .�'W'.S"1. f� ", /~ .4? (1) Oa Britjsh Western-Front in France-Repairing shells at a dump. (2> On the British Western Front in France-View of a square in Arras, showing the wrecked buildings and a tjand playing. (3) On the British Western Front in France-One of the entrances to Arras. (4) Men of the Wilts returning from the trenches wearing captured German trophies. (5) On the "British Western Front in France-Watching the Germans-a British lookout man at the end of a small trench in front of the British front line-The periscope through which tha soldier is watching the enemy's movements is covered with rough canvas to disguise it. (6) On the British Western Front in Fiance-Moving tip the guns and an idea of the ground conditions at the front. (7) Fusing- stokes trench mortar shells before going into" the line, - - - m-~* I r : * H-if - r f.vt>TB avcntsxrtsy ore*/*. ' > v>�- ' ' it""'** J SPHAGNUM MOSS DRESSINGS FOR WAR PURPOSES S~ PHAOXUM Ifoss, to wTjIch attention has been drawn by the fatal accident to Jlr. Harry James StrJth, the American "Spha^-um Moss isxi^rt, is one of Canada'3 �aturai resources, one great value of which has been brought lo light by the -war. Tho use of mosses In surgical dressings dates at least a* far back as the Napoleonic wars, bnt the demand for and extensive tiss of Sphagnum Moss did not materialize until 1515, and. even in the Spring of 3936 Its us? was in the experimental tage. So great has become the demand that Great Britain is no longer nolo to fill it. and Canada and 'the United States are aow being actively exploited for t'nia highly absorbent dressing. Th9 first effectlTe work on this side of the Atlantic was initiated by I'rof. Porter of McGill University, who secured samples of various qualities 6T moss from the British authorities early in 1916 and then explored the bogs of Eastern'Nova Scotia until he was able to locate supplies of material which the same juthoritioe accepted as "perfect.' The first sphagnum dressings sent overseas were made up from this moss in the autumn o* 1016 by tho Junior Red Cross of Guysboro, Nova Scotia. Since then the industry has devel-cepd steadily. TUo Mr.Giil University Women's Union established a sphagnum department in'a iargelaboratory very generously placed at their dis-P=S*.L-i7. -M* University^ Medical School in the autumn of 1916, and from that day until this has bleu preparing moss etd shippins drcsBlaca. Another important function of Sft'is organization haa bcea to iuai�e' tip ex-. periiaenail spharauin dre^singa of many ports f.o try out the different grades of Canadian msterlcl under varying conditions. > During the winter of 491? another work room was started at Dalhou.ile University, Hallfai's and the Canadian Red Cross "definitely adopted sphagnum for hospitul dressings and prepared to open working centres on n lar�e scale. Unfortunately the changes in U19 Atlantic % Ehippms situation which resulted from unrestricted submarine warfare necessitated a tempar-'ary check; but the work of exploration and development waa continued. | The late Mr. Harry Jarnee Smith of New York became interested in the possibilities of sphagnum last spring, and after spending some time with Dr. Porter to familiarize himself with the-technology of the., subject* established a r.vihagnum organization at his own expense at Arichar., Cape Breton, and collected and prepared a large amount of mos3. Success in the use of this material led to the adoption of sphagnum by the American Ifed Cross and to the formation of a department which was placed under the control of Mr. Smith aa organizer and Dr. J. A. Ilartwel! of New York as technical advisor.  During the last two or three months | developments have been very rapid j Tdo demand for dressings has Increas led to such aa eztent that the Canadlar \&ei'Cross has decided to start pro-jduction on a large scale, and the i Americans aro organizing for an 1m-: rae.nso output for the use of their owr. I and the French hospitals. ) No moss can of course be procured | in the east until the snow molts, and ith� boss thaw out; bjit excellent ! sphagnum Is also found on the Pacific j coast. Mr. Smith, with the help qt the (Canadian Sphagnum Committee,sprocured a cor of Vancourer Island mose early in the wint3i\ and this carload (which Mr. Smith paid for out of hl!� own pocket) proved goNsstisfactory that ho'went to Seattle early lr. March to organize the industry in the northwestern States, and Incidentally to look into the situation in British Coumbia for I'rofoasor Porter, whe waB unable to t;o west at the time. As a matter of fict Mr. Smith wet his death while Eeuroning for moss -for the Canadian Red Cross, and iliu* set ! the seal to a lift: of exceptional gener-iosity and nobility. | Sphagnum grows in moist and boggy : planes, and 'can be found in almont al! I parts of the country; but tho !bo useful must have exceptionally fun ,and soft foliage, ai:d the stems while tough and elastic must be flexible, at> otherwise the dressing would be liable to causa irritation. First class materia] has been found in hnrgy districts close .to the Atlantic coast, and equally good moss grows plentifully In tho far West - as, for example, on the west coast of Vancouver island-but little or no first class surgical materia! has been found far from tin sea, although there are imomnse areas of Sphagnum bog in the interior both of Canada and the United States. The best qualities of tuoss are likely to be found cl^ee to the margins of the ponds, and eome-tiraec considerable areas of clean high-grade material fill what was ence a small pond. Before any attempt 1b made to collect mosa in quantities all of the bogs in tho district should bo examined with a view to locating tho largest supplies of good material, and this preliminary examination should he made by person* who have had previous experience in collecting Sphagnum. Owing" to the great variations /In usefulness of different kinds of Sphagnum, and the fact that different ape oies grow very much intermixed, the material ha� to be collected by people who have been trained to know good moss from bad, and even an experienced collector' will often have difficulty in deciding just what to take and what to leave when he first visite a now locality. The accompanying photographs show the work of the McGill "Women's Union. No. 8 illustrates the preparation and drying of sphagnum and the manufacture of dretsdngs. No. 9, the general soldiers' comforts work. The [Union was organized during the first weeks of the war from anions the families of the Governors and staff of the University. Its original purpose ^waa to help provide "soldiers'1 com-f forts" for McGill graduates and students on active service, 'and r� these now number over 2,200, the possibilities of its wprk may be imagined During the three and'a half years of its existence the Union lias expended nearly $8,000 on tho purchase of high grade materials, which havo been niado up by its members into socks, caps, mufflure, pyjamas, shirts, etc., to a total of about 9,000 articles of clothing alone, to say nothing of an immense number of sphagnum dressings etc. the Union was Mrs. H. Walter; �!uc�r. then the chair has been filled �uo> cessively by Mrs. E. B. Howard. Mrs. ,T. B. Porter and Mrs. J. W. Ross, the present President. The Sphagnum Committee of the Union was organised in 1910 under the chairmanship of l^ady Gordon, and Ha present Chair* man is Mrs. Porter. The Treasure* of the Union is Mrs. A. McGoun an! the Secretary Mrs. A. Willey.Any cof* respondence regarding the work of thi Union should bo addressed to the latter; but questions relating to the tech-, nolo?y of Rphagnum and Sphagnum" dressings should be addressed to Mtoa S. M. Bainbridge, Hon. Sec. Committee! on Sphagnum Dressings, u,/� n.---c--.-.~ u j - , .-------r=T Canadian Had Cross Society, care BfcQill Uni. The organiser and first presideot of Irersity, Montreal. �  -9l ;