24th November 1914 (Tuesday)


~ in Lushnjë, Albania – Fahredin Nuri, hydraulic engineer.


~ in London – Lynn Russell Chadwick, architect turned semi-abstract sculptor.



Ernest Shackleton’s antarctic expedition photographs the Head of Moraine Fjord, South Georgia, in a silver bromide print which will later be presented to Britain’s King George V,


14th June 1913 (Saturday)

BORN TODAY: In Whitechapel, East London, to Polish and Romanian parents, Solomon Schwartz, better known  as Stanley Black, OBE, English pianist, bandleader, composer and conductor. Died in London in 2002, aged 89.

Women’s suffrage: At St George’s Church in Bloomsbury, London, a memorial service for Emily Wilding Davison, who died after throwing herself in front of the King’s Horse at the Epsom Derby, attracts large crowds to pay their respects. Six thousand women dressed in white parade in honour of their fallen comrade.

Arms Race: The German Imperial Navy launches the battlecruiser “Defflinger”.

Society and Culture: South Africa passes an Immigration Act restricting the movement of Asians and preventing immigration  from (for example) India.

King’s College, Queensland, founded in 1912 and admitting students since March 1913, is officially opened at Kangaroo Point in Brisbane, on the same day that electric lighting comes to the town of Hamley Bridge, in South Australia.

Exploration: The “Terra Nova” in which Captain Scott made his ill fated South Pole journey, returns to Cardiff where she is greeted by large crowds.

Accidents: Beneath Fifty sixth Street in New York City, eleven workers die when a subway collapses during construction.

28th February 1913 (Friday)

BORN TODAY, in the Bronx, New York City – Victoria Hamilton Adair, American Poet.

DIED TODAY – shot in Possession Bay, South Georgia, Antartica – the largest ever recorded elephant seal (Mirounga leonina) measuring 6.85 meters (22.5 ft) long and estimated to weigh 5,000 kilograms (11,000 lb).

Disasters & accidents: In Omaha, Nebraska, a fire a the Dewey Hotel kills 20 people.

Arms Race: At Portland Harbour in Dorset (UK) an airship is seen by a postman, a government official and a nurse. It is using a strong searchlight and clearly unconcerned about being observed by casual passers-by.

Science and technology: In Sydney, NSW, the “Royal Hall of Industries” opens with a range of modern and forward looking exhibits including motorbikes, insecticides and photographic equipment.

Empire, shipping, labour and migration: The SS Ganges – a 3475 ton steam ship launched in Glasgow in 1906 – leaves Fiji bound for India. On board are 807 Indian indentured laborers who have completed their contract in Fiji. 681 are heading home to Calcutta (modern Kolkata) and 126 to Madras (modern Chennai). Between 1879 and 1916 tens of thousands of Indians migrated to Fiji to find work – mostly on sugar plantations. Repatriation began in 1892 and will continue (eventually using aeroplanes) until 1956.

19th January 1913 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY – Rudolf Walter Wanderone, Jr., in New York City. As “Minnesota Fats”, a nickname he adopted from a film character allegedly based on him (from “The Hustler”, 1961), Rudy entered the American Billiard Congress Hall of Fame.

Antarctic Exploration: The five surviving mules from the Scott and Oates expedition are shot, after the rescue party reaches the Terra Nova (rescue ship). “The mules had played a vital historical role in the expedition for without them the world may never have known about the fate of Scott and his companions” [British Mule Society  Journal, Spring, 2004].

Another quiet Sunday, unless you happened to be Fats Minnesota’s mum or an unlucky mule in Antarctica…

8th January 1913 (Wednesday)

BORN TODAY – Lionel Emmett, who trained as a physician in Calcutta (now Kolkata) and won gold for India at the Berlin Olympics in 1936 as part of the field hockey team.

Exploration: On the 1911-1914 Australasian Antarctic Expedition, in previously unexplored coastal regions, the Swiss ski expert Xavier Mertz dies – possibly from poisoning by excessive vitamin A as result of eating the livers of the expedition’s Greenland Huskies. His sole surviving companion, expedition commander Douglas Mawson eventually makes it back to safety a month later, after what Sir Edmund Hillary would later call “probably the greatest story of lone survival in Polar exploration”.

Natural disasters and events: The Hobart Mercury (Tasmania) reports the arrival in Sydney of the barque “Belfast”, in a damaged state, having been struck by a meteorite. ” On December 15 [1912] … the vessel was going along with all sail set when an intense bluish light streaked over the ship from stern to bow, with a downward direction. This was followed by the foretop gallant mast and main royal yard coming downwith a run. They had been cut right through, but the sails were not damaged.  Directly after the visitation it was found that the ship’s compasses had been affected, and showed a serious difference. Captain Paragon decided to return to Sydney,which port was made mostly by dead reckoning”.

First Balkan War: at the London Peace conference, Serbia gives up its demand for a port on the coast of the Adriatic.