The Rum Ration

Discussion in 'World War I' started by Hobilar, Nov 9, 2007.

  1. Hobilar

    Hobilar Member

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    Contrary to popular belief, Rum was issued to the troops after action, not before it; or sometimes in the trenches during very cold weather when the soldiers would add it to their tea. Some Divisional Commanders kept their commands dry as a matter of policy, though even then Regimental Commanders could provide an issue in emergencies.

    The Rum came on earthenware one gallon jars marked S.R.D. which some records show to mean SERVICES RUM DILUTED, and others as SPECIAL RATION DISTRIBUTION. The men in the trenches had their own interpretation: SELDOM REACHES DESTINATION or SOON RUNS DRY.

    Officially the allocation for a Division of 20,000 men was 300 gallons. This however did not go very far especially when the orderlies dishing out the ration kept their thumb in the measuring beaker. The portion saved being considered the orderlys' Perk.

    The German and French armies were issued daily with poor quality Brandy or Wine. The French calling their Brandy gnole and their wine le pinard.
     
  2. Emac44

    Emac44 Active Member

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    The New South Wales Corp (Marines) during the early days of Australian Penal Colony had what was called the Rum Rebellion. I suspect that it continued into World War One with the Diggers
     
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