20th September 1914 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: Vilhjálmur Hjálmarsson – Icelandic politician.



Western Front: An anonymous nursing sister spends her day helping to care for 1175 wounded British soldiers on hospital trains…

“When  I think of the Red Cross practices on boy scouts, and the grim reality, it makes one wonder. And the biggest wonder of all is the grit there is in them [the wounded soldiers], and the price they are individually and unquestioningly paying for doing their bit in this war”.

[Diary of A Nursing sister on the Western Front, 1914-1915]

In East Africa: The German cruiser Konisberg sails into Zanzibar harbour and disables HMS Pegasus with the loss of thirty one crew members.


On the Home Front: in the East of England, on Hartham Common just outside Hertford, the local rector (priest)  holds an outdoor service for troops and local civilians, telling them that “the country has entered this war for the sake of honour. The very existence of our country depends on our entering into this undertaking and we  have to go on until victory is assured”. 



In the uncharted waters off the Aleutian Islands, the US Revenue Cutter USRC Tahoma, which is enforcing summer fisheries regulations and assisting with search and rescue missions, strikes a reef and sinks. Fortunately, no lives are lost.



1st September 1913 (Monday)

BORN TODAY: in Vienna, Ludwig Merwart, painter and graphic designer.


World Affairs: In the second Chinese Revolution, the forces of Yuan Shikai capture the strategically and symbolically important City of Nanjing (Nanking) in Southern China.

Arms Race: After an apprenticeship at an engineering company followed by work at a shipyard on the Isle of Wight (England) 25 year old Mr Barnes Neville Wallis  from Ripley in Derbyshire wins the post of Chief Assistant in the Vickers Airship Department.


Society and culture: Melbourne, Australia hosts the first pan-Australian Wattle Day Conference of the Australian Wattle Day League. The Wattle Day Association website is dedicated to the commemoration of Wattle Day.


1st July 1913 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY – the German Naval Air Arm and the Dutch Army Aviation Department

At Puck air-station north of Gdansk (then in German West Prussia, now in Poland) Germany establishes its Naval Air Arm, the Marineflieger-Abteilung.

On the same day, at Soesterberg airfield in the province of Utrecht, the Netherlands establishes the aviation department of the Dutch Army, the Luchtvaartafdeling.

Second Balkan War: Serbia and Greece declare war on Bulgaria. The Greek army “liberates” the town of Drama from the Bulgarians.

Empire: in the British “Protectorate” of Zanzibar, control passes from the Foreign Office (in London) to the Colonial Office (in London).

Extreme Weather: Britain is suffering from a heat wave. The London “Telegraph” (newspaper) shows a photograph of gentlemen in suits, waistcoats and high winged collars and ties sitting in the sunshine with their heads shaded by newspapers.

Fashion: the new edition of “Vogue” carries a front page picture of the “Lampshade Dress”, later described as a “turning point” in the history of fashion.

Transportation: In the USA, “a group of automobile enthusiasts and industry officials establish the Lincoln Highway Association (LHA) ‘to procure the establishment of a continuous improved highway from the Atlantic to the Pacific, open to lawful traffic of all description without toll charges’. ”