Home:  Shells and Grenades: WW1 CLARK 'D' GAS BOTTLE


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A German Gas Bottle which contained toxic gas to be used in the chemical Warfare during 1917. This green glass bottle contained a fluid with a colour varying from eggwhite to brown/yellow and a smell similar to shoe polish, it was known to the Germans under the code name 'Clark' which stood for DA-gas, a Vomiting agent. The product was meant specifically to penetrate through safety measures such as gasmasks, especially treated cloths and even the anti gas ointment Item A0819. It was only loaded into projectiles of the 7.7cm model 1896 and the model 1915. These could be identified by a blue cross on the body. When the shell exploded, the glass was shattered and the fluid vaporised. Tens of these formed a vast cloud of toxic gas. This was a very rare item as it was only to be removed when opening a gas shell, something that no reasonable human being dared to do. In 2002 during earthworks in the village of Houthulst (Belgium) near to the site of the Bomb Disposal Base of the Belgium Army, a dump of inner parts of all sorts of German Shells and grenades was discovered. Research has shown that in 1919 German prisoners of war had been put to work emptying these dangerous beasts to salvage steel. The parts not wanted were simply thrown into shell holes. Only around 300 are known to have survived from that source.

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