BORN TODAY: in Cobalt, Canada – Elizabeth Stern (later Elizabeth Stern Shankman), pathologist.
BORN TODAY: in Brantford, Ontario – James Hiller, co-developer of the electron microscope.
The (Russian) Home Front: The Tsar takes over supreme command of the army, and leaves St Petersburg in the dangerous hands of the Tsarina and her trusted advisor, Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin, a peasant and mystical faith healer.
The (French) Home Front: in the streets of Paris, young boys and girls play at being soldiers and nurses.
The (Scottish) Home Front: in Aberdeen, 26,000 pay sixpence each to attend the “Gala and Heather day” in Duthie Park, in support of the Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.
The (Irish) Home Front: In Dublin, at a “Celebration of gaelic and athletic events”, Patrick Pearse addresses the crowd of several thousand on his subject: “The Resurrection of Erin”.
BORN TODAY: in the Pavlovsk Palace, the 18th-century Russian Imperial residence built by Paul I in Saint Petersburg – Princess Catherine Ivanovna of Russia, great-great-granddaughter of Tsar Nicolas I and niece of King Alexander I of Yugoslavia: the last member of the Russian Imperial Family to be born before the fall of the dynasty, and ultimately the last surviving uncontested dynast of the Imperial House of Russia. She died in Montevideo, Uruguay, in 2007, aged 92.
Gallipoli: Allied forces make a final attempt to take the hill of Achi Baba which overlooks the places where many allied soldiers have been pinned for weeks.
“As was the norm with operations from Helles casualties were inordinately high. The Allies incurred 4,000 casualties and the Turkish force rather more, 10,000. For all that the Turkish force suffered twice as heavily the encounter nevertheless ended with possession of Achi Baba remaining in Turkish hands.”
War at Sea: Off England’s east coast, the German submarine SM-UB6 has a productive day destroying four English fishing boats.
History, not fresh, but preserved and recycled: On the Western Front, Ulstermen from Northerl Ireland and the Orangemen diaspora celebrate the Battle of the Boyne (1690)…
“We (the Canadians) all gathered together with a good many Ulstermen to celebrate the Battle of the Boyne. The procession started from “Shrapnel Square” and was headed by an old scout mounted on a white horse with its mane and tail plaited with Orange and Purple ribbon. Next came the fife and drums well decorated with Orange Lilies and “No Surrender” was painted on the flag we carried“.
Midsummer on the home front…
On the English home front: at Maidstone barracks, in Kent, a concert raises funds for wounded servicemen.
On the Scottish home front: the SS Carisbrook, a British merchant steamer carrying wheat from Montreal, Canada, to Leith in Scotland, is captured and sunk by German submarine U-38 off the north east coast of Scotland.
On the Alsatian home front: the town of Metzeral in Alsace (formerly and more recently in France) is destroyed at the end of six days of intense fighting.
BORN TODAY: in Hamburg – SM UC-6, a German minelayer submarine. In just over two years she will sink over 50 ships before herself being destroyed in September 1917.
Eastern Front: At the Battle of Lemberg, German & Austro-Hungarian forces lauch an attack to re-take the city and the Austrian fortress lost to the Russians in 1914 (later Lwów in Poland, now Lviv in Ukraine).
Across Empires: in St John’s on the Island of St. Pierre et Miquelon ( a vestige of the colony of New France off the Atlantic coast of Canada) 242 Canadian recruits of “F” company embark on HM Troopship Calgarian, bound for Liverpool and the war in Europe, including Inuit and Métis volunteers from Labrador.
BORN TODAY: in Lachine, Quebec, Canada – Saul Bellow, Pulitzer and Nobel winner.
Africa: At the second battle of Garua, British and French troops defeat a defending force to take control of the German colony of Kamerun.
BORN TODAY: In Regina, Saskatchewan – James Norris Ormiston, Canadian farmer, insurance agent and politician.
On the (English) home front: The garden of the Nevill Arms public house in Hackney, London, becomes the first London recipient of a Zeppelin carried German bomb.
BORN TODAY: in London – Hilda Schwarz (later Bernstein), journalist, author, artist, activist, communist and exile.
The Dardanelles: Senior British Admiral Sir John Fisher resigns in protest at what he perceives to be Churchill’s misplaced obsession with forcing the Dardanelles, a strategy which has so far yielded nothing but many thousands of deaths [Burg & Purcell].
The Western Front: After a 60 hour bombardment by 433 artillery pieces firing about 100,000 shells, British General Sir Douglas Haig launches his British, Indian and Canadian army against the German defences on the first day of the Battle of Festubert. After 10 days and over 20,000 casualities the Allies will have gained approximately 3 kilometres. Overall losses for the Second Battle of Artois (of which this forms part) are in the order of 200,000 German, French, British, Indian and Canadian men, including over 100,000 Frenchmen [Wikipedia].
The Reuters News Agency files unconfirmed reports (from the Spanish government) of a revolutionary coup in Portugal, where all communications (railway, telegraph etc) have been cut and there are (unfounded) rumours that the ex-Premier, Afonso Costa, has been assassinated.
BORN TODAY: in Canada – Doris Edna Gray, BSc, MSc, PhD and research fellow at the University of Western Ontario, and later Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Hong Kong. Later still, a retiree in Dunblane, Scotland, where she bequeathed “a sum of money to the Women’s Engineering Society to encourage women in Scotland to become professional engineers. Part of this sum of money was allocated to provide £1,000 per year for women studying in Scotland” (the Doris Gray Scottish Scholarships).
BORN TODAY in battle: on the Bellewaerde Ridge, near Ypres in Belgium, nine months after conception in the first days of the war – Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry.
At the Battle of Frezenberg, one act of the month-long drama known as the Second Battle of Ypres, the Patricias are “holding up the whole damn line”.