The Battle of Mount Sorrel took place June 2-14, 1916 in the Ypres Salient. It involved Germany, Canada and Great Britain. (This post is a companion piece to Melina Druga’s WWI Trilogy, Angel of Mercy, Those Left Behind and Adjustment Year, available wherever eBooks are sold.)
“The first Canadian deliberately planned attack in any force had resulted in an unqualified success,” the British Official History of the war said.
Major Battle Events
- The initial German assault caught the Allies off-guard and resulted in the deaths of most of a Canadian battalion. One regiment had an 89 percent casualty rate. Two generals were killed.
- The Germans seized Mount Sorrel.
- The Canadians counter assaulted, but weather conditions made the assault unsuccessful. Ypres was nearly in German hands.
- The British provided one brigade for assistance.
- The Canadians launched a surprise attack and forced the Germans to their original position.
- The Allies were preparing for the Battle of the Somme. They wanted to keep the high ground in Allied hands because it overlooks the city of Ypres and an important road.
- Both the Canadians and Germans were simultaneously planning an attack to seize Hills 61 and 62.
Canada sustained more than 8,000 casualties while Germany sustained around 5,700.
“Here at Mount Sorrel and on the line from Hooge to St. Eloi, the Canadian Corps fought in the defence of Ypres April-August 1916,” reads a memorial by the Sanctuary Wood Museum near Ypres.
Updated: 20 October 2020