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War Surgery and Medicine



Personal washing and washing of clothes was often a problem. Where a fresh-water stream existed there was no trouble, and in New Caledonia in the permanent camps water was freely accessible. However, in the coral atolls fresh water was at a premium and often sea-water only was available. American issues of salt-water soap helped, but the high salinity made the position very unsatisfactory. Most men utilised tents and coconut palms as catchment areas to conserve rain-water for washing.