Canada and the First World War

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Small Box Respirator
The small box respirator, developed in late 1916, was the most effective gas mask issued to Allied troops during the war. Uncomfortable to wear and a severe impediment to breathing, it nevertheless protected against most forms of gas, except in extremely high concentrations. The wearer breathed in the poisoned air through the metal canister filled with charcoal and chemical agents to absorb the gas. Purified air then went through the rubber hose and into the wearer's mouth. Lieutenant-Colonel Thain Wendell wore this respirator. He was awarded the Victoria Cross at the Battle of Vimy Ridge in 1917.

Gas Mask Kit
CWM 19720102-061