Papers of Lt Gen Sir (George) Sidney Clive, GCVO, KCB, CMG, DSO (1874-1959)
[CLIVE: 1.] Letter book
kept by Clive whilst Head of British Missions at French General Headquarters during World War One, 1917-1918.
1917 Jan 4-1918 Aug 17
Letter book kept by Clive whilst Head of British Missions, General Headquarters, France, containing copies of letters and telegrams received and sent by him, mainly relating to liaison between British and French High Command, namely French Gen Henri-Philippe Benoni Omer Joseph Pétain and Gen Sir William (Robert) Robertson, Chief of the Imperial General Staff, with regard to events on the Western Front, notably preparations for the Nivelle Offensive, (including proposed Allied objectives, modifications due to German retirement, notes on lines of demarcation between armies); the appointment of French Gen Ferdinand Foch as Allied Commander in Chief; details of supplies of artillery, equipment and manpower, especially the numbers and morale of the French infantry following the Nivelle offensive; notes on the formation of an interior committee of the War Cabinet, and its possible negative effects upon inter-Allied cooperation; correspondence concerning proposals for the reorganisation of the British Missions at French Headquarters. Includes original letter to Clive from Maj Gen Frederick Barton Maurice at the War Office, concerning the possible establishment of an Allied General Staff in Paris, and alternative methods of communication. 1 vol and 2pp.
[CLIVE: 2.] Personal diaries kept by
Clive whilst Head of
British Missions at French General Headquarters
during World War One, 1914-1918.
1914 Aug 18-1915 Jun 7
Personal diary, giving an extremely detailed account of day-to-day activities whilst Head of British Missions at the French General Headquarters, especially liaison between the British and French Higher Commands with regard to operations on the Western Front, and including details of Clive's arrival in France in August 1914; negotiations and preparations concerning numbers and employment of troops for various operations, such as the original French offensive by the 3 northern armies into Lorraine and the Ardennes, the Battle of the Marne, the first Battle of the Aisne, the first and second Battles of Ypres, the first Battle of Artois, the Battle of Neuve Chapelle, and the Allied Spring Offensive of 1915, as well as commentary on the progress of each offensive; the preparation of intelligence documents including German and French orders of battle and available manpower, troop positions, narratives of events during battles, and maps; descriptions of Clive's visits to front line trenches, notably those of French 4 Army; the appointment of French Gen Ferdinand Foch as Commander of French 10 and 2 Armies; the military situation in Belgium and negotiations surrounding a proposal to send British 7 Div to prevent the fall of Antwerp, 1914; the appointment of Gen Sir William (Robert) Robertson as Chief of General Staff, and Lt Gen Sir Henry Hughes Wilson as Chief Liasion Officer with the Commander in Chief, and private opinions on the changes, Jan 1915; personal discussions with Gen Sir Douglas Haig; the mobilisation of the Italian army in May 1915; the disappointment of Clive's desire to return to command his regiment, due to the wishes of French Gen Joseph Jacques Cesaire Joffre and FM Sir John Denton Pinkstone French, Jun 1915; personal descriptions of the organisational arrangement of the French General Headquarters as opposed to the British, the characters of many of the French and British commanders, and the many wrangles between them concerning military tactics and command. 1 vol.
1915 Jun 81916 Mar 24
Personal diary, giving an extremely detailed account of day-to-day activities whilst Head of British Missions at the French General Headquarters, especially liaison between the British and French Higher Commands with regard to operations on the Western Front, notably discussions between the French and British governments and commanders concerning policy relating to the transfer of troops from the Western Front for the Dardanelles campaign; discussions between Clive and Reginald Balliol Brett, 2nd Viscount Esher concerning opinion within the British Cabinet on the progress of the war; the military and political position of Gen Sir Henry Hughes Wilson, following the appointment of Gen Sir William (Robert) Robertson as Chief of General Staff in Jan; Clive's promotion to Lt Col, Jul 1915; negotiations and preparations concerning numbers and employment of BEF (British Expeditionary Force) troops for the Allied autumn offensive; the transport of Allied troops to Salonika, Macedonia, and discussions as to the advisability of sending more men from the Western Front; events in Gallipoli, especially the visit of FM Horatio Herbert Kitchener, 1st Earl Kitchener of Khartoum and Broome, to decide on whether or not to evacuate the position; progress of the operations in Salonika, with emphasis on the position of French Gen Maurice Sarrail, Commander of the French 'Army of the Orient', and his demands for more troops; the creation of an Allied War Council, and Robertson's opinions on its usefulness; reports of disagreements in the War Cabinet as to the relative importance of the Eastern and Western fronts; the appointment of French Gen Joseph Jaques Cesaire Joffre as Commander in Chief of all the French armies, Dec 1915; a description of the first Allied War Conference at Calais in Dec 1915; the appointment of Robertson as Chief of the Imperial General Staff, Dec 1915, and his request of Clive that he be his liaison officer; the appointment of Gen Sir Douglas Haig as Commander in Chief of the BEF (British Expeditionary Force) in France, in place of FM Sir John Denton Pinkstone French, Dec 1915; the beginning of continuous liaison between the Mission and the War Office in London, Dec; a proposal by Jules Henri Poincare, French President, and Aristide Briand, French Prime Minister, to form an Allied War Council, and the reactions of Kitchener and Robertson to it; discussions with Joffre and the Allied Conference at Chantilly, both concerning plans for the summer offensive of 1916; descriptions of the progress of the Battle of Verdun, Feb 1916; the preparation of intelligence documents, including numbers of available troops, equipment supplies, and maps; a detailed list of French liaison officers with whom Clive works, as well as brief notes on Russian, Belgian, Serbian, Japanese and Italian liaison officers. 1 vol.
1916 Mar 25-1917 Jan 18
Personal diary, giving an extremely detailed account of day-to-day activities whilst Head of British Missions at the French General Headquarters, especially liaison between the British and French Higher Commands, with regard to operations on the Western Front, notably discussions and negotiations concerning a proposed offensive in Salonika, involving British and French troops, based on the possible mobilisation of the Romanian army, complicated by extreme reluctance on the part of the British command, Mar-Jun 1916; a visit by Clive to Verdun, to gather reports from various commanders on the progress of operations, and his descriptions of conditions and events at the front, April 1916; reports of events in Gallipoli; the death of FM Horatio Herbert Kitchener, 1st Earl Kitchener of Khartoum and Broome, Jun 1916; discussions between Clive, Reginald Balliol Brett, 2nd Viscount Esher and others about possible armistice conditions, throughout 1916; preparation for, and beginning of, the 1916 offensive, the Battles of the Somme, with periodical description of the progress of operations, including correspondence between Gen Sir Douglas Haig, French Gen Ferdinand Foch and French Gen Joseph Jaques Cesaire Joffre concerning tactics and employment of troops in various sectors; negotiations leading to Rumania's entry into the war on the Allied side, Aug 1916; attempts by Clive and Esher to improve liaison between Gen Sir William (Robert) Robertson and Haig; the first use of tanks in war, at Flers-Courcelette, Battle of the Somme, Sep 1916; conferences between the commanders in chief regarding plans for the winter and for the 1917 offensive; the start of the first Battle of Verdun, Oct 1916; arguments between the Allied governments and military commands concerning the demands of the Eastern Front, as opposed to concentrating forces on the Western Front, including an Allied Paris conference on Greece and Poland, Oct-Nov 1916; the replacement of Joffre by French Gen Robert Georges Nivelle, Dec 1916, Clive's views on Joffre's future, and his first meeting with Nivelle; description of the Allied Rome Conference, which Clive attended with Robertson, Jan 1917. 1 vol.
1917 Jan 19-1918 Sep 16
Personal diary, giving an extremely detailed account of day-to-day activities whilst Head of British Missions at the French General Headquarters, especially liaison between the British and French Higher Commands, with regard to operations on the Western Front, notably a description by Clive of the British Mission to Russia, in which he acted as representative of the General Staff, including the journey to Petrograd (St Petersburg), a meeting with Tsar Nicholas II, and notes on some discussions, Feb 1917; preparation for, and reports of misgivings about, the Nivelle Offensive; attempts to reorganise the Missions, and Clive's reaction; the start of the Battles of Arras with the successful attack by the BEF (British Expeditionary Force) on Vimy Ridge; the opening of the Nivelle Offensive, Apr 1917, and its failure, leading to the dismissal of French Gen Robert Georges Nivelle in May; the dismissal of many of the French staff in the 3rd Bureau, following the fall of Nivelle; the promotion of French Gen Henri Philippe Benoni Omer Petain to Commander in Chief of the French army, and Clive's description of his working relationship with French Gen Ferdinand Foch; French troop disturbances, and the reasons for them; the progress of the third Battle of Ypres throughout Aug and Sep 1917; Clive's attempt to promote the idea of an Allied Commander in Chief to coordinate operations during 1918, without success, Oct 1917; the creation of an Allied Supreme War Council, with a permanent military committee of Foch, Gen Sir Henry Hughes Wilson, Italian Gen Luigi Cadorna and US Gen Tasker Howard Bliss, and Clive's commentary on its purposes and future, Nov 1917; preparations for the Battle of Cambrai, Nov 1917; the replacement of Lt Gen Sir Launcelot Edward Kiggell with Lt Gen the Hon Sir Herbert (Alexander) Lawrence as Chief of General Staff on the Western Front, Jan 1918; the confrontation between the Rt Hon David Lloyd George, British Prime Minister, and Gen Sir William (Robert) Robertson, culminating in Wilson becoming Chief of the Imperial General Staff, Feb 1918; negotiations and discussion between the British and French concerning the Inter-Allied Reserve, and its control and use, Mar 1918; description of the progress of the second Battle of the Somme, including the evacuation of the French General Staff to Provins; the appointment of Foch to coordinate Allied operations, Mar 1918, and the reaction of the French General Staff to this; personal meetings between Petain and Clive, in which the former's reaction to Foch's appointment and his own position is given, Apr 1918; Clive's attempts to arrange a conference between the three commanders, Foch, Petain and FM Sir Douglas Haig, culminating in a meeting in July; the progress of the third Battle of the Aisne, notably the problem of bringing up reserves with inadequate transport, and the conflicting views of the British and French command as to their use, Jun 1918; the Conference of the Heads of Missions in Paris, discussing the arrangements for the evacuation of British subjects from Paris, and the prospect of the French making peace with Germany, Jun 1918; unsuccessful attempts by Clive to leave the Mission and command troops; the suspicions of the British Government concerning French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau's role in the implementation of military policy, and Foch's reluctance to utilise the French General Staff, Jul 1918; the start and progress of the Battle of Champagne, including details of troop movements and the morale of the French Staff; Clive's appointment as Head of Intelligence at British General Headquarters, Aug 1918; Clive's appointment as Military Governor of Cologne, Germany, Dec 1918. 1 vol.