Page:EB1922 - Volume 30.djvu/609

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563
Capello—Cape Province

functions, but its canteen business alone made it by far the biggest shopping concern in the world. The “supplies and shipping” department of the Expeditionary Force canteens had for canteens alone an average annual turnover of approximately £20,000,000. From three to four thousand different articles appeared on the stock sheets. The tonnage handled was enormous, and during the month of Nov. 1918 it reached nearly 12,000 tons, representing 320,000 cases, in France alone. The record week was that ending March 16 1918, just prior to the great German offensive, when 3,643 tons of canteen supplies were landed, and a turnover amounting to £400,000 was reached. The tonnage off-loaded for the year 1918 was 121,000 tons, and comprised over three million packages. The growth of the total sales at canteens and depôts in France is shown by the following figures (by half-years ending at the dates mentioned) :

June 1915 … £ 120,000
Dec. 1915 … 700,000
June 1916 … 2,000,000
Dec. 1916 … 4,000,000
June 1917 … £6,000,000
Dec. 1917 … 8,000,000
June 1918 … 9,500,000
Dec. 1918 … 9,500,000

Profits were kept to a strict minimum, and by a happy decision prices for the same goods were the same on every front.

Another feature of the Expeditionary Force canteen work was that it served the man in the fighting line first and the man in the rear zone second. When in 1917–8, owing to the shipping position, Expeditionary Force canteen supplies had to be restricted, and the complaint came that what supplies did come over were largely absorbed at base and on lines of communication, and the men in the front line got very little, the quartermaster-general ordered that (1) certain luxuries which were in very short supply should go only to the front area canteens and not at all to the base; (2) other goods should go in the proportion of four to front areas and one to the base. Beer was a special problem, as its bulk made demands on tonnage which could no longer be admitted. G.H.Q. did not like the prospect of stopping the soldiers' beer, and accordingly the Q.M.G.'s department took over, in part or in whole, breweries in the army areas and arranged to brew beer locally, importing only the malt and the hops from England. American canteens were, of course, “dry.”

The work of the British Expeditionary Force canteens in France was the most important as regards figures, but probably on the remote fronts it was of greater value in showing the troops that they were still in touch with home. In Egypt and Palestine the organization pushed forward its comforts far into the desert on camel-back, and on these fronts about £5,000,000 a year passed over its counters. On the Mesopotamia front there were 37 canteens, the most remote being at Khaniqin (in Persia); and one flourishing branch was at Qurna, the legendary site of the Garden of Eden, where soldiers could buy most of the fruits of the earth in canned form. A canteen boat was kept plying on the Tigris. The Salonika front and the British front in Italy were also well supplied with canteens.

The work of the British Expeditionary Force canteens was sometimes carried on under conditions of some danger, as forward canteens were never withdrawn on account of hostile shell-fire unless it became very intense. During the German advance in the spring of 1918 the Expeditionary Force canteens lost very heavily in goods. As the enemy came forward and the canteens had to be evacuated the stocks of spirits were destroyed, other goods given away to the troops as they passed, and the residue destroyed by fire.

The British Y.M.C.A. during the war spent a gross of £21,900,000 on canteen work for British troops and war workers. Of this sum £17,300,000 represented refreshments sold. The Y.M.C.A. provided “dry” canteens, amusements and stationery, and in rear areas was in charge of lecture and other educational work. Its free gifts to the troops were valued at nearly £1,000,000, and all profits made at canteens were put back into war work. After the Armistice, when public subscriptions to the Y.M.C.A. fell off, the British War Office, recognizing the importance of its work, advanced to it £700,000 to enable it to continue operations during the period of demobilization. Subsequently £590,000 of this was made a free gift. Y.M.C.A. work was carried on in every theatre of war.

The Church Army provided nearly 2,000 canteen centres for the British army, of which about one-half were in France and others in Mesopotamia, Egypt, Malta, Salonika, Gallipoli, India and at naval bases.  ((F. F.))  When the American army arrived in France, the U.S. Red Cross had already established and was operating a canteen system for the French army. This system was extended, the existing organization naturally forming a base, since the American Expeditionary Force was superposed on the forces already in the French zone, and at first used the same lines of communication. Military canteens were also established by the troops themselves. But by far the greater part of the canteen work in touch with troops was carried out by the American Y.M.C.A., which, by an army order of Sept. 6 1917, took over responsibility for canteen work generally. The order forbade the establishment of a military canteen where a “Y” was available, and finally over 1,200 canteens or recreation halls were in operation. Affiliated to the Y.M.C.A. and working in connexion with its canteen system were library, educational, athletic and entertainment organizations in profusion. The Y.M.C.A. also cooperated in the work of the French “Foyer du Soldat.” On a smaller scale, similar work was done by the “Knights of Columbus.”

Capello, Luigi (1859– ), Italian general, was born April 14 1859. He entered the infantry, and his career till he became a general officer was passed in this branch of the service. During the Italo-Turkish War he served in Cyrenaica, and as a major-general he took part in the operations round Derna, commanding a column in the final action of the war in Oct. 1912. In 1913 he was promoted to lieutenant-general. He commanded the 25th Sardinian Div. during the early attacks upon the Carso in the summer of 1915, and the VI. Corps opposite the southern part of the Sabotino-Podgora bridgehead in Sept. 1915. In Aug. 1916, Capello, whose command had been increased to the strength of six divisions, conducted the attack which stormed the bridgehead and led to the capture of Gorizia. A difference of opinion between Cadorna and Capello led to the latter's transference to the Trentino front, where he commanded successively the XXII. and V. Corps in the Asiago uplands. In March 1917 he returned to the Julian front as commander of the “Gorizia Zone” (VIII., VI. and II. Corps), in which capacity he conducted the first phase of the Italian offensive in the following May. In June Capello was given command of the II. Army, which extended from the Plezzo valley to the Vippacco, and in Aug. he directed the attack on the Bainsizza plateau. There was a difference of opinion between Cadorna and Capello regarding the development of the action after the initial success, and this difference became more serious when Cadorna decided to stand on the defensive in view of the forthcoming enemy attack. Capello wished to go on attacking, and it is difficult to avoid the conviction that his belief in his own method of meeting the coming threat prevented him from coöperating whole-heartedly in the plan of his chief. Capello fell ill shortly before the enemy attack was launched and only returned to his post on the very eve of the battle. He was quite unfit for the strain of command, and had to resign after two days. When sufficiently recovered in health he was given the task of creating the new V. Army out of units broken and disbanded by the retreat. To this task he gave all his energy, and in it he achieved remarkable results, but in the spring of 1918, on the constitution of the Caporetto Inquiry Commission, he was put on half-pay, and in July he was retired. After his retirement Capello wrote two books, a reply to the criticisms of the Inquiry Commission, entitled Per la Verità, and Note di Guerra, a work which deals with the Italian campaign as a whole but especially with those operations in which he played an active part. He also took some part in politics, presiding at various important Nationalist and Fascisti meetings.

Cape Province (see under Cape Colony, 5.225), the largest of the provinces of the Union of South Africa. At the 1911 census the inhabitants numbered 2,564,965, of whom 582,377 were whites and 1,982,588 coloured, an increase since 1904 of 8.33% in the coloured pop. but of only 0.45% in the white.

Among whites, females exceeded males by 43,623; among the coloured people by 63,782. In 1918 a census of whites only was taken. They then numbered 618,825, an increase of 6.41 % over 1911, affording an example of the abnormal fluctuation to which the white pop. of S. Africa is subject. Of the 1911 pop. 96.47% of the white and 44.20% of the coloured inhabitants returned themselves as Christians. The coloured inhabitants were divided into Bantu 1,519,939, Asiatic 7,690, and “mixed” and other coloured 454,959. This last category included a few thousand Hottentots and Bushmen, but the majority were the mixed white and black “Cape Boy” class commonly called “coloured” in distinction from “natives.” In 1911 of the whole coloured pop. 24,000 were engaged in professions or commerce and 93,000 in industries. Many districts of the province are arid or semi-arid, and over most of its area there are not more than seven persons per sq. mile. The pop. is mainly found in the fertile S. and S.E. coast regions, and of the Bantu in 1911 no fewer than 871,062 lived in the Transkeian territories, where there were 54 persons to the sq. mile. These Bantu are still heathen and nearly all are agriculturists. There were in 1911 only five towns with over 12,000 inhabitants, namely Cape Town (161,759), Kimberley (44,433), Port Elizabeth (37,063), East London (24,606) and Grahamstown (13,830).

Administration.—The affairs of the province are in the hands of a provincial council, elected for three years and not subject to dissolution save by effluxion of time. The qualifications for electors and members of the council are the same as for the members elected by the province to the House of Assembly