22nd August 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: in Brantford, Ontario – James Hiller, co-developer of the electron microscope.

http://www.nndb.com/people/125/000206504/

War!

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.

http://www.johndclare.net/Russ_Rasputin_Figes.htm

The (French) Home Front: in the streets of Paris, young boys and girls play at being soldiers and nurses.

http://www.vintag.es/2015/04/kids-at-war-paris-1915-rare-photographs.html

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.

http://www.friendsofduthiepark.co.uk/heather-day-at-duthie-park-a-century-on/

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”.

http://www.millstreet.ie/blog/2015/08/19/patrick-pearse-and-his-visit-to-millstreet-on-22nd-aug-1915

21st June 1915 (Monday)

Midsummer on the home front…

On the English home front: at Maidstone barracks, in Kent, a concert raises funds for wounded servicemen.

http://www.kent.gov.uk/about-the-council/campaigns-and-events/kent-and-medway-in-the-first-world-war

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.

http://www.wrecksite.eu/wreck.aspx?13412

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.

http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=228886

20th June 1915 (Sunday)

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.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SM_UC-6

War!

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).

http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/battles_lemberg1915.html

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.

http://www.heritage.nf.ca/first-world-war/articles/aboriginals-first-world-war.php

10th June 1915 (Thursday)

BORN TODAY: in Lachine, Quebec, Canada – Saul Bellow, Pulitzer and Nobel winner.

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

War!

Africa: At the second battle of Garua, British and French troops defeat a defending force to take control of the German colony of Kamerun.

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

 

30th May 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: In Regina, Saskatchewan – James Norris Ormiston, Canadian farmer, insurance agent and politician.

http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=565f3dfb-c1f4-462b-925f-502607e1baaf&Language=E&Section=ALL

War!

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.

http://www.londonremembers.com/memorials/first-zeppelin-bomb-of-ww1

15th May 1915 (Saturday)

BORN TODAY: in London – Hilda Schwarz (later Bernstein), journalist, author, artist, activist, communist and exile.

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

War!

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].

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

Revolution!

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.

http://www.cphrc.org/index.php/documents/firstrepublic/475-1915-05-15-commune-in-portugal

12th May 1915 (Wednesday)

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).

http://www.wes.org.uk/content/professor-doris-gray

http://www.wes.org.uk/content/doris-gray-scottish-scholarships

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