25th June 1914 (Thursday)

BORN TODAY: in Gelsenkirche, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany – Lorenz Marie Hackenholt, “gas chamber expert”.


World Affairs: Archduke Franz-Ferdinand, heir to the thrones of Austria-Hungary, arrives by train in the town of Ilidza, a suburb of Sarajevo, where he is joined by his wife,  Sophie. He will spend the weekend inspecting military manoeuvres while she visits (catholic) churches, schools, charities etc.


Fire: In Massachusetts, the Great Salem fire destroys  1376 buildings, making 20,000 homeless.


Postcard from Salem


Society and Culture:  At Number 8, Second Avenue, in Forest Town, in England’s industrial midlands, Elijah Mottishaw, miner, and his wife Sarah, get a “surprise” visit from George Frederick Ernest Albert Windsor and his wife, Victoria Mary Augusta Louise Olga Pauline Claudine Agnes, better known as King George V of the United Kingdom and Dominions (and Emperor of India), and his wife, Queen Mary.



12th April 1914 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: in Berlin, Germany – Helmut Blume, “Pianist, broadcaster, administrator, educator”, wartime internee in England and Canada, and later a naturalised Canadian citizen.


Society and Culture:  on a wet autumn Easter Sunday in New Zealand, farmer and diarist George Adkin spends “time indoors with Maud + the others – music, reading, conversation, etc. In afternoon the weather clear[s] so [they] attend evening service [with the preacher], Mr. Howard Andrew”. 



Fire: In the US Adirondacks on Lake George, the second of three Sagamore Hotels is burnt to the ground in what many believe to be an arson attack.



7th April 1914 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: in Yozgat, Central Anatolia – Ramela Carman, Armenian genocide survivor, clothing factory worker at 11, and emigrant to America in 1960.


Died Today: In Lahore in British India (now in Pakistan) – Ghazi Mohammad Ayub Khan, aka “The Victor of Maiwand” and “The Afghan Prince Charlie”. At various times, the Emir of Afghanistan, the Governor of Herat Province, and the leader of the Afghans in the second Anglo-Afghan War. Remembered today as an Afghan National hero.


Fire: In the district of Uttlesford in Essex, England, a passing traction engine on the London to Newmarket road releases sparks into the westerly wind which trigger a fire in the thatched cottages of the village of Little Chesterford. Before the fire is extinguished it destroys two farms, two public houses and nine homes, leaving forty-three people homeless – around 1 in 5 of the village’s population.


Crime, delinquency and punishment: In Exeter, England a twelve year old boy is found guilty of firing an air-gun in the street, and of threatening another boy with the weapon. The magistrates order the father to whip the boy.

The newspaper comments:   “It seems to be the fashion among a certain section of young men in the city to stand about the streets in gangs, blocking up the pavements, and when requested to make room for more orderly members of Society responding with language more forcible than polite. A general nuisance to others, and but little service to themselves, it is time these young hooligans were brought to book. The other evening I noticed a particularly abusive group take possess of part of the pavement in Fore-street. Several gentlemen accompanied by lady friends were obliged to step on to the road, and one of them, who remonstrated with the young men. was answered with very vile language. The same evening another gang took their stand in Fore-street, opposite the entrance to Market-street. Although they remained on the road they were quite as great a nuisance, and several cyclists were forced to dismount. as the gang refused to budge, and only laughed when one cyclist fell off in trying to avoid collision with one of the gang. Surely it is time the police dealt in a sharp manner with these pests.”  [The Western Times, 7th April 1914].




27th February 1914 (Friday)

BORN TODAY: in Copenhagen, Denmark – Dyre Trolle, Qualified Medical Doctor in 1939, specialist in gynaecology in 1950, and Professor in gynaecology and obstetrics at the University of Copenhagen from 1962.


Arms Race: In the”London Gazette”, the official British journal of aristocratic and military affairs: “His Majesty the King [George V] has been graciously pleased to approve the formation of a cyclist battalion by the Territorial Force Association for the County of Huntingdon. to be designated ‘The Huntingdonshire Cyclist Battalion’. “


Journalism: In Exeter, in England’s West Country, the Western Times reports a domestic “near-miss” incident:  “Yesterday, Exeter Brigade were summoned to a house in the Mint, where some clothes had been put in front the fire and caught alight, but the flames were extinguished with a couple of buckets of water, and the assistance of the firemen was not needed.” (Phew!).


Exploration: in the city of Caceres, on the Banks of the RIo Paraguay in Brazil, an expedition which includes the ex US President Theodore Roosevelt begins a mysterious investigation into the Rio da Duvida (River of Doubt), “a mysterious river hidden in the tropical forest of which no one knew the exact location of its sources and also its mouths”.


13th January 1914 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: in Gedinne, in the Belgian province of Namur – Jijé (real name Joseph Gillain), Belgian comics artist.


Labour Relations: In South Africa, in response to widening industrial activity by white workers  in the railways, mining and other industries – the Government declares Martial Law and mobilises large forces, including commandos, police and “reliable citizens” enrolled as armed special constables.

Click to access Ann_O’Quigley_-_The_1914_Strike.pdf

Fire: In Marion, Ohio, the Olney Avenue school building is destroyed by fire. 320 children “many of them are highly delighted” are left temporarily without schooling.


7th January 1914 (Wednesday)

BORN TODAY: in San Antonio, Texas – Cresson Henry Kearney, “survivalist idol” and author of “Nuclear War Survival Skills”.



~ In  Rosewood, Queensland, Australia, the Rosewood Hotel is “destroyed in a huge fire”. [www.gdaypubs.com].


~ In Andover, England, the fire brigade is called to a fire at the “Lamb” public house, when a bucket of tar, heating over a fire (?), overflows.