21st February 1914 (Saturday)


~ In Kiel, Germany – at the Germaniawerft shipyard – SMS (“HIs Majesty’s Ship”) Kronprinz, a Konig class battleship of the Imperial German Navy.

~ In Philadelphia, USA – at the shipyard of William Cramp and Sons – USS Sacramento, a US Navy gunboat.



World Affairs: In Russia, Tsar Nicholas concludes a special conference of military and other advisers to discuss the possibility of the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles being forced open so that the Russian Navy could be released from the Black Sea if needed. (Since the Treaty of Berlin in 1878 Russia had been banned from sending warships through the Dardanelles, even in times of peace).


20th February 1914 (Friday)

BORN TODAY: in Johannesburg, South Africa – John Charles Patrick Croghan Daly, Jr., game-show host.


Society and culture: In Frankfurt, Germany, Rosa Luxemburg stands trial for encouraging public disobedience by making anti-war speeches in which she called on young German men to refuse to take up arms against their French brothers. She is given a one year prison sentence.


Shipping accidents: The Fethard lifeboat is destroyed in a storm off the coast of Ireland with the loss of 9 of its 14 crew while attempting to rescue the crew of the cargo ship “Mexico” with a cargo of South American mahogany.


19th February, 1914 (Thursday)

BORN TODAY: at Begles, Aquitaine, France – Jacques Dufilho, comic actor.


World Affairs: In Epirus on the fault line between orthodox Christian Greece and Muslim Albania, relief worker Raymond Duncan sends his third telegram to the British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Sir Edward Grey, reporting on atrocities committed against the local Muslim community.


18th February 1914 (Wednesday)

DIED TODAY: Frances (Fanny) Matilda Van de Grift Osbourne (later, Stevenson) – a life less ordinary. “The only woman in the world worth dying for”, is commemorated in the novel, “Under the Wide and Starry Sky” by Nancy Horan.


Agriculture and society: George Adkin, New Zealand farmer, is busy clearing (firing) the bush at the margins of his land. In the summer afternoon he attends a garden party organised by the ladies of the Methodist Church.


Society and culture: In England, Geoffrey Stewart, 35 year old Eton educated son of Major-General Sir Herbert Stewart, K.C.B., is promoted to the rank of Major in the Leicestershire Yeomanry. He previously joined the Coldstream Guards in 1898, and served with them through- out the South African (“Boer”) War, 1899-1902. From 1905-07 he served in the Egyptian Army and retired in 1910, joining the Reserve of Officers.

He will be killed while retiring from a reconnaissance he makes, alone, to the enemy’s trenches at Givenchy, in Flanders, on the 22nd December, 1914.

Today, he and others are commemorated in a memorial bus shelter, and the local Church, in Winwick, Northamptonshire. [www.roll-of-honour.com].


17th February 1914 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: in Newcastle, northern England – George Mathwin Forrester – RAF Hurricane Pilot who died during the Battle of Britain in July 1940, aged 26.


Arms Race: In the British Parliament, the First Lord of the Admiralty (Winston Churchill) declines to answer a question from a member about comments in the German Parliament regarding proposals for mutual reductions in naval construction.


World Affairs: Hjalmar Hammarskjöld replaces Karl Albert Staaf as Prime Minister of Sweden.


Aftermath of the Second Balkan War: In Northern Epirus (previously part of the Ottoman Empire, but recently granted to newly formed Albania under the Protocol of Florence), Greek forces lead an armed rebellion to declare the Independence of Norther Epirus from the Albanians.


Society and Culture: The National Opera Company of Canada collapses after just one season amid accusations and scandal.


Science and technology: the New York “American” magazine reports on US senate intentions for formally inquire into the use of babies and infants for vivisection experiments.


Shipwrecks: In Massachusetts, USA – the Italian cargo ship “Castagna”, laden with guano from Uruguay, runs aground on Cape Cod. Five of the thirteen crew perish of cold before lifesavers are able to reach them.


16th February 1914 (Monday)

BORN TODAY – In Howard County, Arkansas – James Clarence (“Jimmy”) Wakely, “one of the last singing cowboys”.


Society and culture: In New South Wales, Charles Gilbert Heydon, a Judge at the Industrial Court, rules that a living wage for a family of four should be 48 shillings a week, and that the living wage should be governed by the degree of prosperity of the age.


Science and technology: In the USA, J. C. Carberry and W. R. Taliaferro set a new army altitude record of 8,700 feet.


15th February 1914 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: location unknown – Rosamund Greaves,11th Countess of Dysart and Lady Huntingtower – daughter of Wenefryde Agatha Scott (the 10th Countess) and Major Owain Edward Whitebread-Greaves.


Society and Culture: In New York the “Sun” newspaper runs the headline: “United States – Most Drug Afflicted of Nations” above an article highlighting “Cocaine’s Deadly Action”.


Shipwrecks: At Chesil Beach on the Dorset Coast in southern England, the steamer Dorothea, from Rotterdam, runs aground carrying iron ore from Spain to Holland.