Idle News

Alfred Anderson 1896 – 2005

The oft-romanticized Christmas truce of 1914 has lost its final witness.  Alfred Anderson was thought to be the last living veteran of the famed yule truce when German and British soldiers sang carols, exchanged gifts and, according to some reports, played a game of soccer.

Alfred Anderson was 109 years old.

British and German soldiers fraternize – Christmas 1914

I had no idea who this man was before today, but his association with the legendary truce makes me a bit sad at his passing.

From BBC News:

Prince Charles has paid tribute to Scotland’s oldest man and the country’s longest serving veteran of World War I, who has died at the age of 109.

Alfred Anderson, who served with the 5th Battalion the Black Watch, died in a nursing home in Angus.

Read the full BBC article

For those of you wanting to read a little more of the history of Christmas truces here is an very complete examination with excellent source documentation.  It is an excellent article, if slightly less romantic than the stories which come out at Christmas time.

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