March 12 1918 – At 9.20pm last night the…

March 12 1918 – At 9.20pm last night the siren
sounded and going down to the hotel salon I found
that all the guests were down in the cellar! The Germans were over our part of Paris
and the crashing of their
bombs was deafening. No wonder some of the women
betrayed nervousness… For a while I chatted gaily
with them, making light of our position in the cellar which I declared (although I did not believe)
was perfectly safe—were a bomb to strike the hotel it would inevitably bring the whole house down over our heads as the arches of the cellar
are flimsy affairs…

American diplomat in Paris – The War Diary of a Diplomat
Photo: Mars 1918, taking shelter like Parisians do: in a cellar filled with good pinard! Gallica