23rd June 1915 (Wednesday)

BORN TODAY: in Mayfair, London – Robin “Monty” Montgomerie-Charrington, formula 1 racing driver.



The Isonzo Front: The Italian Third Army launches a mjor offensive against Austro-Hungarian forces along a 21 mile front stretching inland from the Adriatic. [Burg & Purcell].

East Africa: After British forces successfully destroy the German wireless station and arsenal at Bukoba, in German East Africa, “Brigadier General James Stewart grants his troops permission to loot Bukoba. The men, joined by their officers, go on a shameless, drunken orgy of vandalism, rape and pillage” [Burg & Purcell]…

…British papers reported the events differently…

As it was not intended to hold Bukoba, the force re-embarked on June 23rd, leaving the town “a sorry sight, and being plundered and looted by the local inhabitants who swarmed in to complete the enemy’s discomfiture”.


Spy!  at 6.00AM in the “miniature rifle range” at the Tower of London, German spy Carl Muller is executed by a firing squad of 8 riflemen.


22nd June 1915 (Tuesday)

EXPLORATION: Members of Ernest Shackleton’s Antarctic expedition celebrate mid-winter with a dinner on board HMS Endurance.


DIED TODAY: at  Bukovina (now split between Romania and Ukraine) – Ferenc Istvan Dénes Gyula Békássy, Cambridge graduate, Hungarian bi-lingual poet and Imperial Hussar. Killed in action, aged 22.



Eastern Front: Austro-Hungarian forces recapture the city of Lemberg (Lwow/ Lviv) from the Russians.


Africa: On the shores of Lake Victoria in German East Africa, the British 25th (Frontiersmen) Battalion, Royal Fusiliers and others have launched an amphibious attack on Bukoba (“The Battle of Bukoba”) with the objective to destroy the German wireless station.


2nd February 1914 (Monday)


~ in Amberg, Germany – Heiner Fleischmann, German motorcycle racer;

~ in Durban, South Africa – Hubert Freakes, English rugby union international



Leisure: In Fremantle, Western Australia – Billy Clare establishes the Freemantle Workers Club. Happy Centenary!

Railways and Empire: In Kigoma, in the far West of German Tanganyika on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, the Zentralbahn (Central Line) railway arrives from Dar es Salaam, 800 miles away on the Indian Ocean coast.


25th March 1913 (Tuesday)

BORN TODAY, in Gronau, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany – Otto Gustaf Veenstra, originally a Dutch citizen, but later a German Citizen. Crew member on the Battleship Bismarck. Perished 27th May 1941 (aged 28) with the sinking of the Bismarck.

Extreme Weather: In Dayton, Ohio, 400 drown in (at that time) the worst flood event in US history, on the Great Miami River and the aptly named Mad River, in the Ohio River Valley. Elsewhere there is also widespread flooding in Indiana and Illinois.

Exploration: From Falmouth, UK – William Scoresby Routledge and his wife Katherine set sail in their 90 foot schooner “Mana”, bound for Easter Island where, from March 1914, they will initiate a survey of the island. The Routledges have previously (1910) published a book “With a Prehistoric People”, based on their time living with the Kikuyu people in “British East Africa” between 1906 and 1910.

Society and Culture: The town of Red Deer, in Alberta Canada is incorporated as a city as its population rises towards 2800.