24th March 1914 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: in Riviere du Loup, in the Province of Quebec, Canada – Francis Dioone, Halifax bomber pilot who lost his life along with six of his colleagues when his aircraft crashed in an unexplained accident in Yorkshire, England, in 1944, just a week before his thirtieth birthday.


Arms and corruption: In Japan, Yamamoto Gonnohyoe, 8th Prime Minister, is forced to resign in the wake of a corruption scandal involving British and German arms suppliers: Vickers and Siemens.


23rd March 1914 (Monday)

BORN TODAY: Carmen Planas, the “Darling of Manila”, the first woman to be elected to the Manila City Council.


Arms Race: in the British Parliament, the First Lord of the Admiralty (SIr Winston Churchill) is answering questions requiring him to confirm that merchant vessels being armed with guns are solely under the control of masters and officers who are British subjects. He duly confirms that: “the interests of the State are safeguarded by the fact that all captains and officers of the ships so armed are British subjects worthy of the confidence of the Admiralty.”


Women’s suffrage:  a small group of suffragettes pickets the offices of the Director of Public Prosecutions in London.


Children’s rights: the Times of London reports that  the use of child labour in the city of Nottingham is so familiar that for far too long it has scarcely excited local attention.


Defying definition: The author Franz Kafka records in his diary: “I never wish to be easily defined. I’d rather float over other people’s minds as something strictly fluid and non-perceivable; more like a transparent, paradoxically iridescent creature rather than an actual person.”  Behold: the kafkaesque age is upon us.


22nd March 1914 (Sunday)


~ in the city of Nukha in the south of Imperial Russia (now Shaki in northern Azerbaijan) – Lutfali Amir oglu Abdullayev, Azeri theatre and film actor.


~ in the bilingual city of Oberglogau (variously in Bohemia, Prussia and Poland, now Głogówek in Poland) – Josef Niemietz, highly decorated Hauptfeldwebel (Company Sergeant Major) in the German Wehrmacht.


~ place unknown – John Alexander Elphinstone, prisoner of war in Colditz, and later the 17th Lord Elhpinstone.


~ In Aranmula temple village in Kerala, British India – Aranmula Ponnamma, award winning Malayalam film actress widely known as the mother figure in Malayalam cinema.


Women’s suffrage: In London, the East London Federation of Suffragettes  choose today, Mothering Sunday,  to march from East London to Westminster Abbey to pray for Votes for Women and those on hunger strike.


21st March 1914 (Saturday)


~ In Japan – Sakae Ōba, the “Fox of Saipan” who led a small group of Japanese who held out against US forces deep in the jungle on the Island of Saipan for 16 months after the Battle of Saipan, eventually being induced to surrender several months after the official surrender of the Japanese nation.


~ In Baden, Switzerland – Professor Sir Fritz Caspari; Heidelberg Undergraduate, Oxford (Rhodes) scholar; Professor of Intellectual History and Diplomat of the German Bundesrepublik.


20th March 1914 (Friday)

BORN TODAY: in Medindie, Adelaide, South Australia – Thomas Currie ‘Diver’ Derrick, posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for bravery against Japanese forces at Sattelburg ridge on the Huon Peninsula, New Guinea in 1943.



Ireland: In Curragh, County Kildare, where the British Army has its main base in Ireland, many army officers threaten to resign their posts rather than obey possible imminent orders from the government in London for them to take action against the rebellious paramilitary Ulster Volunteers (the Curragh “incident” or “mutiny”).


Sport: the Directors of the Arsenal football (soccer) club in London are forced to temporarily close the ground after torrential rain reveals structural problems at the new Highbury ground.


19th March, 1914 (Thursday)

BORN TODAY: in Hamilton County, Florida – Berne Davis, “Fort Myers Arts Matron”. Happy Centenary Ma’am!


World Affairs and global finance: The Anglo-Persian and Royal Dutch Shell oil companies sign an agreement with the Armenian millionaire Calouste Gulbenkian (“Mr five per cent”) who is a major shareholder in the Turkish National Bank (British controlled), in an attempt to secure exclusive oil rights in Mesopotamia (now Iraq).


Death in Venice:  a ferry boat (vaporetto) carrying around 50 passengers collides with a naval ship because the crew are busy watching the new marvels of a seaplane circling overhead. 14 die in the accident.


Food and agriculture: New Zealand farmer and diarist George Adkin spends a busy day with his raddle.


Extreme weather:  Torrential rain hits north London, causing sewers to overflow. Rainwater floods down Highbury Hill pushing mud against the west terrace boundary wall of the Arsenal football club, opened just six months ago. The wall is unable to take the pressure and begins listing in towards the terracing.


18th March 1914 (Wednesday)

BORN TODAY: In Vienna, Austria  – Heinrich Herzog, son of Jacques Herzog, sole owner of the bank Herz & Strauss, and his wife Franziska Bamberger. In 2002 Mr Herzog junior (aged 88) was successful in his claim for an amount of 156,000 swiss francs from an [unnamed] Swiss Bank. According to Mr Herzog’s testimony

“his father’s bank had business relations with the Bank in Switzerland, as well as with another bank in Zurich, Switzerland, and a company in Zug, Switzerland. The Claimant also stated that his paternal uncle, Emil Herzog, made frequent trips to Basel, Switzerland, where he deposited assets. Emil Herzog committed suicide in Vienna in 1938. According to the information provided by the Claimant, his father, who was Jewish, was arrested with the Claimant’s mother by the Gestapo in March 1938 and put in jail in Vienna, and his bank was liquidated by the Nazis. The Claimant explained that his father managed to flee Austria to the United States later in 1938”.