Arthur Roberts: The life and times of one of Scotland`s first black soldiers
A unique WWI diary by one of the first black soldiers in a Scottish regiment has been discovered. The diary, by Private Arthur William Roberts (the King's Own Scottish Borderers (KOSB) and Royal Scottish Fusiliers, May 1917 - March 1918) describes avoiding Jerry's shrapnel; surviving gas attacks and the mud; going over the top; the boredom of life in the trenches. "We want him to be remembered as Arthur Roberts, not as a black soldier, but it was unusual to have a black soldier in the regiment then. There were black regiments fighting in the WWI and they were subject to quite a lot of ... prejudice. But he is the only one ... in the KOSB," explained Ian Martin, of the KOSB Museum.
Kilted Scots did'nt scare Kaiser Wilhelm's German troops in WWI
Several Scottish regiments have taken umbrage over a German Historian Benjamin Ziemann questioning their warrior spirit during WW1. He was quoted saying that there was nothing in the war archives to support the claim that Kaiser Wilhelm II's soldiers feared the Scots more than the other Allied troops. "I have never ever... come across a text which referred explicitly to the Scots as one particular group or gave special attention to their allegedly superior bravery." The Scottish regiments interested more for their wearing of the kilt than their prowess in battle - the Germans were far more scared of black troops from the French African colonies.
Memorial dedicated to Scotland's last vet of the First World War
A memorial dedicated to Scotland's last vet of the First World War has been unveiled. The cairn has been erected in the Perthshire town of Alyth, the home of Alfred Anderson who died in Nov 2005 at the age of 109. The Black Watch soldier was also Scotland's oldest man. Mr Anderson, who joined the army at the age of 18, saw action in the trenches of France before being removed from active duty in 1916 with serious shrapnel wounds. A bronze bust of him and his medals - including the French legion D'Honneur - have taken pride of place at the Black Watch Museum.
Alfred Anderson: Scotland's longest surviving World War I veteran
Alfred Anderson, who served with the 5th Battalion the Black Watch, was born in 1896. He was in one of the first British contingents to serve on the Western Front. Anderson was thought to have been the longest surviving veteran of the 1914 Christmas truce when British and German troops shook hands in no-man's-land. Prince Charles, who knew the veteran, said: "I was very deeply saddened to hear that Alfred Anderson had died. As many ... know, he had a legendary reputation within the Black Watch and had a special connection with my grandmother's family through his service with her older brother Captain Fergus Bowes-Lyon at the Battle of Loos in 1915."