3rd August 1915 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: Roman Fischer, an Austrian fencer, and  Arthur Birch, an Australian chemist.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_Fischer

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Birch_(organic_chemist)

War!

On the Italian Front: After 91,000 casualties the Second Battle of Isonzo on the Italian/ Austrian border (now the Soca valley in north west Slovenia) draws to a close because both sides have run out of ammunition, both for small arms and for artillery. [Wikipedia].

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Battle_of_the_Isonzo

On the (Belgian) Home Front: British nurse Edith Cavell, who has been based in Brussels for many years, is arrested by the German authorities on suspicion of helping British, French and Belgian soldiers and citizens to escape from German occupied Belgium.

http://primaryfacts.com/2780/edith-cavell-facts-and-information/

30th July, 1915 (Friday)

BORN TODAY: in Brighton, England – Rachel Amos (later Bromwich), “Celtic scholar celebrated for her masterly dictionary of Welsh and British legend” [The Independent].

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/rachel-bromwich-celtic-scholar-celebrated-for-her-masterly-dictionary-of-welsh-and-british-legend-2184096.html

War!

Western Front: At one of the narrowest sections of no-man’s land, at Hooge in Belgium, German soldiers surprise British defenders with six of their new Flammenwerfer (flamethrowers) to capture the Hooge crater. [Burg & Purcell: Almanac of World War 1].

http://www.ramsdale.org/hooge.htm

Australia: WIth a growing sense of unity among the Australian states, the nation holds its first “National Day”.

https://www.awm.gov.au/blog/2013/01/22/the-other-australia-day-30-july-1915/

In Gosford, New South Wales, Miss McCabe appears as “Britannia”, holding a trident. transported in a  Chrome Yellow Renault garlanded with flowers. [Flickr].

Britannia tableau, Australia Day parade, Gosford, Friday 30 July 1915

While in New Zealand, farmer and diarist George Adkin “levelled heaps in [his] Cow p[addock] all day”.

http://collections.tepapa.govt.nz/Topic/5077

16th June 1915 (Wednesday)

BORN TODAY – in a summer-house in Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychchwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch – the UK branch of the Women’s Institute.

http://www.thewi.org.uk/centenary/members-stories/myfanwy-jones

War!

Western Front: Over 1000 die in 12 hours today at the Battle of Hooge (aka Bellewaarde).

http://www.bellewaarde1915.co.uk/

Home Front: William “Chalky” White, suffering with spinal injuries, and recovering at the Queen Mary’s Royal Naval Hospital in Southend (formerly the “Palace Hotel”) writes home proudly to his mum after he gets a visit today from Queen Mary herself.

Click to access william-white-part7.pdf

6th June 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: Brebis Bleaney, CBE (Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) FRS (Fellow of the Royal Society), British physicist specialising in the use of microwaves to study the magnetic properties of solids.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brebis_Bleaney

War!

Miracles and second thoughts:

When Zeppelin LZ-37 is attacked and destroyed by a British fighter plane eight crew members perish in the flames, but a ninth crew member throws himself overboard as the vessel is crashing above a convent in Ghent and falls into a bed,where he survives. [Burg & Purcell].

Meanwhile the government in Berlin orders U-boat commanders not to torpedo large passenger ships. [Burg & Purcell].

 

9th May 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: in New York – Hy Turkin, baseball encyclopedia editor.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hy_Turkin

War!

Western Front: At the Battle of Aubers Ridge, British forces attack the German line in support of the larger, French led offensive to the south – the Second Battle of Artois. “This battle [of Aubers Ridge] was an unmitigated disaster for the British army. No ground was won and no tactical advantage gained. It is doubted if it had the slightest positive effect on assisting the main French attack 15 miles (24 km) to the south”. [Wikipedia]. There are over 11,000 British casualties. Four Victoria Crosses are later awarded.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Aubers_Ridge

8th May 1915 (Saturday)

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.

http://www.birthofaregiment.com/birth-of-a-regiment/background/background/frezenberg/

War!

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”.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Battle_of_Ypres

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Princess_Patricia%27s_Canadian_Light_Infantry

https://www.linkedin.com/groups/Battle-Frezenberg-8-May-1915-4044713.S.5869915384450142209

2nd May 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: In Leigh-On-Sea, Essex – Margaret Rose “Peggy” Mount, OBE, english actress best known for her “battleaxe” portrayals.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peggy_Mount

War!

The Eastern Front: After a huge artillery bombardment along a 19 mile front, the German 11th Army retakes the city of Gorlice in the Austro-Hungarian province of Galicia from the Russians. The city (now in Poland) is largely in ruins [Burg & Purcell].

The Western Front: During the second week of fighting at the second Battle of Ypres the death of 22 year old Canadian Lieutenant Alexis Helmer inspires Doctor and Major John McCrae to set down the first draft of his poem ‘In Flanders Fields’

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
          Between the crosses, row on row,
       That mark our place; and in the sky
       The larks, still bravely singing, fly
    Scarce heard amid the guns below.
    
    We are the Dead. Short days ago
    We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
       Loved and were loved, and now we lie
             In Flanders fields.
    
    Take up our quarrel with the foe:
    To you from failing hands we throw
       The torch; be yours to hold it high.
       If ye break faith with us who die
    We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
             In Flanders fields.

McCrae died of pneumonia in January 1918, “while still commanding No. 3 Canadian General Hospital (McGill) at Boulogne”. [Wikipedia]

http://www.greatwar.co.uk/poems/john-mccrae-in-flanders-fields-inspiration.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_McCrae

28th April 1915 (Wednesday)

War!

Arms makers: in the US, the Bethlehem Steel Corporation issues its shipping note for “1,248 cases of three-inch calibre shrapnel shells, filled”, due to be carried across the Atlantic (from neutral USA) in the cargo hold of the passenger liner “Lusitania” to the (British) Royal Arsenal at Woolwich. The weapons do not appear in the ship’s final manifest.

http://www.lusitania.net/deadlycargo.htm

Peace makers: The International Congress of Women convenes at The Hague, Netherlands, with more than 1,200 delegates from 12 countries—including Britain, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy, Poland, Belgium and the United States—all dedicated to the cause of peace and a resolution of the war. “With mourning hearts we stand united here….We grieve for many brave young men who have lost their lives on the battlefield before attaining their full manhood; we mourn with the poor mothers bereft of their sons; with the thousands of young widows and fatherless children, and we feel that we can no longer endure in this twentieth century of civilization that government should tolerate brute force as the only solution of international disputes”.

http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/international-congress-of-women-opens-at-the-hague

http://www.wilpf.org.uk/history/international-congress-of-women-1915/

News makers: The New York Times reports a recent explanation in Russia’s Duma [Parliament} explaining the presence of Russian troops in Persia:

“The presence of our troops in Persian territory by no means involves a violation of Persian neutrality. Our detachments were sent to that country some years ago for the definite purpose of establishing and maintaining order in districts contiguous to our possessions, of high economic importance to us, also to prevent the seizure of some of these districts by the Turks, who openly strove to create for themselves there, especially in the district of Urumiah, a convenient base for military operations against the Caucasus. The Persian Government, not having the actual power to maintain its neutrality, met the Turkish violation of the latter with protests, which, however, had no results.”

http://www.armenian-genocide.org/4-28-15-text.html

24th April 1915 (Saturday)

BORN TODAY: in Bletchingley, Surrey, England – Field Marshal Richard Michael Power (Baron) Carver, GCB, CBE, DSO & Bar, MC, educated at Winchester and Sandhurst; Chief of General Staff and Head of the British Army from 1973 to 1976.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Carver,_Baron_Carver

War!

On the (Turkish) Home Front: In Istanbul the authorities arrest around 250 Armenian intellectuals and community leaders, today being conventionally referenced as the start of the Armenian massacres which some describe as a holocause or genocide. An estimated 1 to 1.5 million Armenians will die in the troubles ahead.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armenian_Genocide

http://hmd.org.uk/content/24041915-deportation-armenian-intellectuals-istanbul

On the (English) Home Front: In East London (UK)Leyton Orient football (soccer) club beat visitors Leicester City 2-0  to maintain their position at 9th in England’s second division.

http://www.statto.com/football/stats/results/1915-04-24/leyton-orient-v-leicester-city

On the Western Front: at the Battle of St Julien (Ypres), the German army releases more chlorine gas, successfully breaking the line of the Canadian 1st Division, who have been advised to counteract the gas by urinating on thier handkerchiefs.

http://ww1cemeteries.com/ww1cemeteries/second_battle_of_ypres.htm

22nd April, 1915 (Thursday)

War – from above, from beneath, and from within…

 

BORN TODAY: in Brno, in Austria-Hungary (now part of the Czech Republic ) – Vilem Goth, Czechoslovakian exile who joined the RAF 310 squadron at Duxford, England, and died in action over Kent fighting for the Allies in 1940 .

http://www.bbm.org.uk/Goth.htm

The Western Front: At the Second Battle of Ypres, the Germans secure an initial advantage by releasing poison gas onto a favorable wind, which totally surprises French colonial troops – Algerian and Zouaves, with many collapsing and dying while trying to flee. [Burg & Purcell].

War at Sea: In Washington DC, the German Imperial Embassy issues the following public notice addressed to US citizens:

NOTICE!

Travellers intending to embark on the Atlantic voyage are reminded that a state of war exists between Germany and her allies and Great Britain and her allies; that the zone of war includes the waters adjacent to the British Isles; that, in accordance with formal notice given by the Imperial German Government, vessels flying the flag of Great Britain, or any of her allies, are liable to destruction in those waters and that travellers sailing in the war zone on the ships of Great Britain or her allies do so at their own risk.

http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania/final-crossing/