Thursday, April 14, 2011
Communications in Greece were a challenge
The road system, such as it was, in Greece was decidedly second rate. It was below the usual European standard. The best roads were just asphalt, while they often were macadam, that is, layers of broken stones. The Athens-Florina road was often not even two lanes wide. There was some 1,600 miles of railroad, with only 350 passenger coaches and about 5,000 box cars (as we call them in America). The port of Athens, the ancient Piraeus, could handle 3,000 tons a day, unloaded. Since Salonika now seemed impossible to hold, the only alternative port was Volos. That port would be limited to 6,000 ton ships or smaller. The port of Stilis might have been used, but the Greeks wanted to use the rail line to hold railroad cars withdrawn from Macedonia. This is based on the account in Vol.II of the Australian Official History.