Beginning with the attack at Verdun early in 1916 the story of the war and of American aid is carried to the close of 1917
The forest of Grémilly, northeast of the point of attack, was just a great cloud shot through with lightning-flashes. A deluge of shells fell on the French positions, annihilating the first line, attacking the batteries and finding their mark as far back as the city of Verdun. At five o'clock in the afternoon the first waves of infantry assaulted and carried the advanced French positions in the woods of Haumont and Caures. On the 22d the French left was driven back about four kilometres.
[Sidenote: Fall of Herbebois.]
The following day a terrible engagement took place along the entire line of attack, resulting toward evening in the retreat of both French wings; on the left Samognieux was taken by the Germans; on the right they occupied the strong position of Herbebois.
[Sidenote: Germans enter Douaumont.]
The situation developed rapidly on the 24th. The Germans enveloped the French centre, which formed a salient; at two in the afternoon they captured the important central po