24th May 1915 (Monday)

Turkey’s war!

Gallipoli: a brief truce is arranged between the warring nations so that the thousands of dead on both sides can be buried.

http://www.europeana1914-1918.eu/pt/digitalnz/record/1206500

http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/photograph/34113/gallipoli-armistice

Anatolian atrocities: In response to growing tales of forced marches and massacres of Armenians in Anatolia by the Turkish government, the foreign ministers of the Triple Entente (France, Russia and Britain) issue a proclamation vowing that Young Turk (party) leadership would be held responsible for “these new crimes of Turkey against humanity and civilization”.  In response, the Turkish cabinet three days later approves the “Provisional Law of Relocation” by which the army is “authorised and compelled to crush in the most severe way any sign of resistance or aggression among the population… including to transfer and relocate the populations of villages and towns, either individually or collectively in response to military needs or…any signs of treachery or betrayal”  

“By best estimate, some 800,000 of the Armenian deportees were to perish – starved, shot, or beaten to death – en route [to the] “barren reaches of northern Syria”.

[Scott Anderson: “Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East”]

http://www.armenian-genocide.org/Affirmation.160/current_category.7/affirmation_detail.html

4th May 1915 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: in Gorzyce in Eastern Prussia (now part of Western Poland) – Florian Marciniak, Polish scoutmaster murdered by the gestapo in 1944, aged 28.

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

War!

Crime and punishment: 14780 Acting Corporal Chisholm, of the 20th Fortress Company British Royal Engineers, serving on the Western Front, “feloniously, wilfully and of malice aforethought, kill[s] and murder[s] No. 348 Lance-Corporal Robert Lewis, 1st Glamorgan (Fortress) Company, Royal Engineers’, a crime for which he is court-martialled on 10th May and hanged on the 17th May at 6.10AM.

http://www.stephen-stratford.co.uk/chisholm.htm

11th April 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: Sunil Santha – Sri Lankan composer, singer and lyricist.

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

DIED TODAY: In prison in the Netherlands – Serial killer Maria Swanenburg, aged 75, convicted in 1885 of poisoning over 100 people with arsenic between 1880 and 1883, of whom at least 27 died, after starting with her own mother (1880) and shortly after her own father. Her motive – insurance policies. Her punishment – life imprisonment.

http://murderpedia.org/female.S/s/swanenburg-maria.htm

War!

In the Middle East: Turkish forces shell the city of Qurna in Mesopotamia (now Iraq) which has been held by the British since early December 1914. [Burg & Purcell].

10th April 1915 (Saturday)

BORN  TODAY: in Detroit, Michigan – Harry Bratsburg, better known as Harry Morgan, and better still as Colonel Sherman Tecumseh Potter, M.D.

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

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_M*A*S*H_characters#Sherman_T._Potter

Crime and Punishment: In England, the “Hertfordshire Mercury” reports on four boys aged 9 to 12 who have been apprehended for burglary, who are sentenced at Cheshunt Petty Sessions to “receive six strokes each with the birch rod”.

http://www.hertspastpolicing.org.uk/page/the_birch_for_mischievous_boys

War!

Western Front: Major-General Ilse, Chief of Staff of German 4th Army, is summoned to Supreme Headquarters at Charleville-Mézières for a meeting with General von Falkenhayn, where he is informed that the trial of the gas cloud is now urgent and should be carried out as quickly as possible.

http://www.greatwar.co.uk/battles/second-ypres-1915/prelude/gas-trial.htm

In the Aegean: The harbour at Moudros, on the Greek Island of Lemnos, temporarily commandeered by the British, is becoming congested with warships bringing troops to the impending land attack on the  Dardanelles.

https://www.awm.gov.au/blog/2010/04/10/saturday-10th-april-1915-diary-of-hv-reynolds/

http://www.rupertbrookeonskyros.com/LastDays.htm

30th March 1915 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: in Barcelona – Francisco Sabaté Llopart (known as ‘El Quico’), Spanish resistance fighter, French resistance fighter, anti-Franco rebel and bandit, Spanish “public enemy No 1”, “Anarquista”. Shot and killed by the Spanish civil guard in January 1960, aged 44.

https://libcom.org/history/articles/1915-1960-francisco-sabate-llopart

War!

The Home Front: In Britain, “after Lloyd George [the ‘Chancellor of the Exchequer’ or Finance Minister] denounces drinking as an enemy of the war effort, George V declares the royal household’s willingness to abstain from consumption of alcoholic beverages for the duration of the war” [Burg & Purcell].

28th March 1915 (Sunday)

BORN TODAY: in McDonald, Pennsylvania – Jay Livingston.

Que Sera Sera.

http://www.nndb.com/people/515/000205897/

War at sea

~ Off the coast of Wales, the British steamship, Falaba, en route from Liverpool to Sierra Leone, is torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U28.  One hundred and four people die as a result of the attack, and one of them is an American, Leon Chester Thrasher. The “Thrasher incident” increases public agitation for America to enter the war.

“After persistent requests by Secretary of State Bryan, documents detailing witness statements from the sinking of the Falaba offered proof that the captain of U-28 gave adequate warnings and time for the Falaba to offload passengers. Instead, the crew of the Falaba had used that time to radio the position of the submarine to nearby armed British patrol ships. As the warship approached, the submarine fired at the last minute — and detonated nearly thirteen tons of contraband high explosives in the Falaba’s cargo. This discovery allowed a diplomatic delay in the American response and the decision of whether to go to war.” [Wikipedia].

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

~ Elswhere today, the SS Brussels is ordered to stop by Uboat U33 but chooses instead to attempt to ram the submarine, thereby forcing it to dive, which prevents the attack. The German authorities are outraged that a merchant vessel should attack a submarine.

“Determined to exact revenge, they deliberately set out to capture [the Captain, Fryatt] and, in June 1916 sent destroyers to again intercept the SS Brussels. This time, he and the vessel were captured and taken to occupied Belgium. Capt Fryatt was found guilty at a court martial of being a “franc tireur” – a civilian who took up arms against the usual rules of war – and executed by firing squad. … His death prompted an international outcry, including in the United States … where there was outrage that a civilian had been killed for defending himself.” [Daily Telegraph].

http://blog.findmypast.co.uk/2015/the-tragic-death-of-captain-fryatt/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/britain-at-war/8068171/Forgotten-hero-of-the-First-World-War-to-be-remembered-in-exhibition.html

23rd March 1915 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY: United Breweries Holdings Limited, an Indian Non-Government Company registered at the Registrar of Companies, Bangalore, with authorized share capital (now amounting to)  1,000,000,000 Rupees, and paid up capital of Rs. 668,185,220.

https://www.zaubacorp.com/company/UNITED-BREWERIES-HOLDINGS-LIMITED/L85110KA1915PLC000740

After 100 years, the United Breweries group now holds 40% of India’s brewery market…

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

War!

The Home Front: In Newcastle, in the north of England, 17 year old William Douglass Horsley is found guilty under the Defence Of the Realm Act (DORA) of…

“possessing wireless telegraphy apparatus Including ‘one complete receiving set of a fairly formidable type that could receive a message from a considerable distance, probably Paris or Berlin’. The apparatus was‘home made but very powerful and much more than a mere toy’. Furthermore, its aerials were concealed”

William pleads guilty, is fined 20 shillings (one British pound) and his equipment is confiscated.

http://heatonhistorygroup.org/tag/william-douglass-horsley/