"Some of the Tommies, first getting permission from the Sergeant, went into the machine-gunners' dugout, and wrote letters home, saying that in the morning, they were going over the top, and also that if the letters reached their destination it would mean that the writer had been killed. Before a charge Tommy is the politest of men. There is never any pushing or crowding to be first up these ladders. We crouched around the base of the ladders waiting for the word to go over. I was sick and faint, and was puffing away at an unlighted fag."
- Arthur Guy Empey, "Over the Top" by an American Soldier Who Went
British Soldiers going "Over the Top."
Harold R. Peat, Private Peat, by Harold R. Peat (Indianapolis: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1917)