Abbott, Jane, Diary, 6 August 1914

pages 44-45
Case Study: 
An American in Vienna on the Outbreak of the First World War: Jane Abbott’s Diary
Abbott, Jane
6 August 1914
McMaster University Libraries
Copyright, public domain: McMaster University owns the rights to the archival copy of the digital image in TIFF format.


August 6th
[page] 44
looking for war sights. We went to the Westbahn and met a company of artillery and some infantry. Later while walking in the Prater we came upon them in camp. It was very interesting to see them get the big loaves of something for the horses, to see the cook carts, small stores on wheels spouting smoke through long stove pipes …, cooking the men’s supper. The horses gathered from everywhere, are untrained. A group of six horses were harnessed to a machine gun with one rider for every two horses, three officers mounted the seat on the carriage and they dashed up and down. At first the forward horse kicked that set the one behind him going. But they were soon lashed into obedience and were dashed about … to draw a machine gun. A few men were training their horses to saddle
[page] 45
also. When Don and I decided to leave the people who were watching the interesting maneouvers, Don pulled out my old map of Vienna to see where to leave the Prater to get a car. Instantly a soldier was beside him. “Who are you – what are you doing with a map? What is your business, identify yourself please. In vain Don showed his bank book his receipts for … from doctors etc while I pulled out a visiting card. This last was considered very interesting! And we were told to wait and wait we did for half hour or more, while that old map and my visiting card went to those in authority! An Austrian near us was amused at our attempts to express our feelings in German! It did no good to sputter, and we grinned and bore it until the soldier returned with my bethumbed card and the map. He apologized. He shook hands with Don