Nearly 100 years ago on May 28, 1918, Americans from all corners of the republic stepped foot into Hell.
Near a little French town called Cantigny, the United States got its first taste of the horrors of the First World War. Names you’d become familiar with like George Marshall, George Patton, Eisenhower and Harry Truman all participated in the war.
In fact, the major counterattack during the Battle of Cantigny was lead by Theodore Roosevelt, Jr. But the American began to struggle with elements of this new war they’d never seen before.
Machine guns, rapid loading artillery, and gas were lobbed at the Doughboys from behind German lines. Indeed, approximately 40% of all casualties during the war were caused by artillery shelling.
However, if you were to ask any soldier back then what they feared most it would undoubtedly be encountering a sniper.
To give you a full sense of how terrifying a sniper attack could be, have a listen to this interview with William Lake, (107 years young at the time of filming) talk about an encounter with a sniper.
A major reason why snipers were so feared wasn’t the gun they used. Lots of bigger, meaner weapons were more commonly used against soldiers, but rather it was the ability for a sniper to spot his target before he could be spotted.
One tool was used by a sniper and his spotter to find his enemies and that was the spotting scope.