Great War Lives Lost

We died 100 years ago in the War to end all War

Tag: First World War

Sunday 18 October 1914 – We Lost 318

Huddersfield Town FC

Huddersfield Town FC

Ypres is recaptured by the Germans.

Enemy shells set alight two ricks at Beaupuits, the flames clearly showing to the enemy the position of our trenches.  Under heavy fire from machine guns, Lance Corporal W H Stoneman (Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry) endeavors to extinguish the flames for which he will be award the Distinguished Conduct Medal.

The first destruction of a submarine by another submarine occurs when E3 (Lieutenant Commander George Francis Cholmley age 32) wanders too far into the Western Ems looking for likely targets on the third day of a patrol in the area off Borkum in Heligoland Bight.  It is sighted on the surface at 10:25 by the German U27 which fires a torpedo from a range of 300 yards that cuts E3 in half sending both halves to the bottom. There are no survivors among the 28 members of the crew. ERA Charles Ellman Blake is lost at age 28. He has two brothers-in-law who will lose their lives later in the war, Thomas Gawn in 1915 and Arthur James Woodford in 1918.

British monitors under Admiral Horace Lambert Alexander Hood aid the Belgians in the battle of Yser.  Admiral Hood will be killed at the Battle of Jutland.

SMS Emden finds three more victims. Number one is the cargo liner Troilus on her maiden voyage. The master, Captain George Long, is furious with the naval intelligence officer in Colombo who has told him that if he passes thirty miles north of Minicoy he will be safe.  Her cargo is rubber, copper, tin and other items. The 10,000 tons in her holds and her own value make this ship the most valuable catch of Emden’s career. The loss represents probably an excess of one million pounds sterling, which in the monetary values of the period is enough to build three light cruisers.  Shortly thereafter the St. Egbert carrying 6,600 tons to the United States is captured. This ship is used to carry away the crews of previously captured ships and she is released to do so.  Finally at about midnight the collier Exford laden with 5,500 tons of the best Cardiff coal, destined for the Royal Navy is captured.  A prize crew is put aboard and she goes into tow. SMS Emden captures her final British merchant ship, S S Chilkana with a valuable cargo of piece goods on her way to Calcutta from Britain, and is immediately sunk.

Today’s losses include:

  • Son of the Earl of Glasgow
  • Huddersfield Town Football player
  • Olympic Silver Medalist
  • British Isles Rugby International
  • Three uncles lost in the Crimean War
  • Two brothers-in-law
  • Two sons will be killed on service (one pre-World War II and one in that war)
  • Families that will lose two and three sons
  • Son of a Justice of the Peace

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

Captain Seymour Frederick Auckland Albert Hurt (Scots Fusiliers) is killed on his thirty-fifth birthday. He is the son of Albert Frederick Hurt JP DL. Two paternal uncles were killed in the Crimea while a maternal uncle died of wounds received at Inkerman.

  • Captain ‘the Honorable’ James Boyle(Royal Scots Fusiliers) is killed at Chateau Warneton at age 34.  He is the son of the 7th Earl and Countess of Glasgow.  His widow will marry ‘Sir’ Hugh Trenchard.
  • Lieutenant Frederick Longman (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 24. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ John Evans.
  • Lieutenant Villiers Chernocke Downes(Bedfordshire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 23.  His two sons will be killed on service, the first serving as a Lieutenant in the King’s Own Scottish Borderers will be killed in an airplane accident in 1938 while the other will be killed in action serving as a Lieutenant Colonel in the 2nd Royal Scots Fusiliers at Anzio on 27 May 1944 also dying at age 34. His brother will be killed next month.
  • Lieutenant Thomas Cunningham Gillespie (King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed at age 21. His brother will be killed in September 1915. He won a Silver Medal at the 1912 Olympics as a member of the New College Rowing Eight team.
  • Lieutenant Edwin Maurice Bishop (Dorsetshire Regiment attached King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry) is killed. His brother will die at home on service in April 1915.
  • Corporal Sidney Nelson Crowther (Royal Engineers) is killed in action at age 39. A medical doctor, he served and was killed as a motor cycle dispatch rider. He earned four caps in Rugbyfor the British Isles in the 1904 tour of Australia and New Zealand.
  • Lance Corporal Harold Whitehorn Ahern (East Kent Regiment) is killed at age 19. His brother will be killed in March next year.
  • Lance Corporal Larrett Roebuck (York and Lancaster Regiment) is killed at age 25. He played 17 football games for Huddersfield Town last season.
  • Private Percy A Shorter (East Kent Regiment) is killed at Ploegsteert. His two brothers will be killed in the Great War.
  • Private George Frederick White (Lancers) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed in September 1918.
  • Private Samuel Reuben Hibbert (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 32. His brother will be killed in May 1916.
  • Private Percy Turner (King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry) is killed at age 21. His brother Henry will lose life in the Great War.

Photos from

Saturday 17 October 1914 – We Lost 80

Anthony Eden

Anthony Eden

The small industrial town of Armentieres is captured by the 4th Division along with Houplines, Le Gheer and Ploegstgeer.  They will remain behind the British lines until it is evacuated on 10 April 1918.  The village of Aubers is captured by the 9th Brigade along with Herlies and part of Aubers Ridge.  These gains are lost within a few days however and the Ridge will not be captured by British forces for three years. A bridge over the canal ¾ of a mile east of Givenchy is captured; this is the farthest the British will advance in this sector until 1918.  Enemy fire from the positions known as the Brickstacks and Railway Triangle halt further advance on both sides of the canal. The 7th Division digs in on their salient around Ypres, although 20th Brigade pushes forward a mile or so to counter nuisance snipers, occupying positions near Kruisecke.

The force on the River Shat-el-Arab consists of the Dorsetshire Regiment, the Norfolk Regiment, an infantry and Mountain Battery from the Indian Army. The first position held by the enemy is along the edge of the date palm plantations which border the river bank in a belt in places two miles wild. Today the entire force attacks Sahil a place ten miles north of Sanizah on the River Shat-el-Arab, which is about thirty miles from Basra. The enemy put up a very heavy gun and rifle fire and advancing against it in the open is difficult.

A German half flotilla is engaged in laying mines in the Downs off the Dutch coast when the British light cruiser HMS Undaunted attacks it. The German destroyers T119, T118, T117 and T115 are sunk by gunfire from the cruiser in concert with the destroyers HMS Lance, HMS Lennox, HMS Legion and HMS Loyal. The British save as many of the survivors as possible.  The Germans send out the hospital ship Ophelia to pick up any survivors, however the British capture her and make her a prize charging that she has been sent off for the purpose of scouting. The Germans suffer a loss of over two hundred men, the British ships receive only superficial damage, one officer and four men are wounded.

Today’s losses include:

  • Brother of a future Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
  • Heir to the Earldom of Scarborough
  • Son of a Baronet
  • A man whose daughter will be born in 13 days
  • Son of a Justice of the Peace
  • First of two sons who are killed
  • Son of a General

Today’s highlighted casualty is

Lieutenant John Eden (Lancers) is killed. He is the son and heir of ‘Sir’ William Eden the 5th/7th Baronet and older brother of ‘Sir’ Anthony Eden future Prime Minister of Great Britain from 1955 to 1957. His younger brother will be killed at the Battle of Jutland serving as a Midshipman on HMS Indefatigable.

  • Major Archibald Ariel Mercer (Dorsetshire Regiment) is killed at age 39. His daughter will be born in thirteen days and he was wounded in the Tirah Campaign of 1897-8.
  • Captain Arthur Curgenven Magor (Wiltshire Regiment) is killed at age 35. He is the son of Edward Auriol Magor JP and he fought in the South African War.
  • Captain Miles Bertie Cunninghame Carbery (Irish Fusiliers) is killed at Houplines at age 37. He is the son-in-law of the Right Honorable Thomas Sinclair.
  • Second Lieutenant Richard John Lumley (Hussars) the son of Brigadier General ‘the Honorable’ Osbert Lumley CMG and heir presumptive to the Earldom of Scarborough is killed at age 20, by virtue of being the grandson of the 9th
  • Second Lieutenant Francis Lester Hastings-Medhurst (Worcestershire Regiment) is killed at age 19. He is the nephew of A Hastings-Medhurst His Majesty’s Consul Corunna.


Friday 16 October 1914 – We Lost 58

The First battle of Ypres begins. It will last until 22 November.  The Somerset Light Infantry occupies the village of Erquinghem-Lys, approximately 1.5 kilometers west of Armentieres.  German forces had captured it earlier in the month.  The Germans attempt to advance but as the Allied line is now complete the war of maneuver is over and the Battle of the Yser begins.  The Battle of the Yser is part of a general German attack that stretches from the sea to La Bassee. Givenchy is recaptured and held.

John French’s GHQ for the first time includes Rawlinson’s Corps. The forward movement of III Corps and Cavalry Corps to the Lys will continue and 7th Division will fan out of Ypres and take up a line from Zandvoorde, through Gheluvelt to Zonnebeke.  The weather is very poor, with heavy rain and fog. In the many places the fields are inundated with streams and ditches rising and little practical progress is made.

At 17:00 a convoy of forty-five ships, including fourteen troopships of the Indian Expeditionary Force ‘B’ leaves Bombay harbor bound for Africa escorted by the battleship HMS Goliath. Most of the sepoys are soon sick.  The transports are badly overcrowded and any physical exercise is difficult; this is particularly true on board the small Assouan, 1,900 tons, which carries the Palamcottah Light Infantry. Many of the Indian units are not provided with their accustomed food, their digestions are upset and their religious scruples outraged. One officer declares the slow two-week voyage to Mombasa to be “a hell on crowded ships in tropical heat”.  Not surprisingly the troops are dispirited and discouraged. Major General Aitken and his staff travel in the Karmala, a converted P & O liner, and are somewhat more comfortable. On the same day Force “D” leaves Bombay bound for the Persian Gulf to be in place if Turkey enters the war.

The general attack on Tsing-tau begins from the sea by a combined British and Japanese force, assisted by airplanes.  The forts are damaged.  Casualties to the Allied forces are only three, all British.

The first Canadian Contingent (31,200 officers and men) arrives in Britain.

The New Zealand Expeditionary Forces leave Wellington with 8,250 men consisting of one mounted rifle brigade (three regiments) and one infantry brigade (four battalions) with their supply columns and a divisional headquarters in ten ships. They are bound for Albany at the southwestern extremity of Western Australia to join twenty-six transports there assembled for the 20,000 man Australian Army. This includes one infantry division (three infantry brigades plus field artillery) and one brigade of light horse as well as support troops.  This force is destined to join what will become the ANZAC force on Gallipoli.

The 17th (Duke of Cambridge’s Own) Lancers depart Sialkote, India for France aboard the transports SS Leicestershire and Islanda with 16 officers, 4 warrant officers, 533 other ranks and 619 horses.

After being quiet for almost three weeks SMS Emden strikes three times on this day. Her first victim is the Clan Grant (Captain Norman Leslie) carrying 4,000 tons of valuable mixed cargo from England to Calcutta via Madras. Victim number two is the dredger Ponrabbel.  Captain Edwin Gore and his men can hardly wait to become prisoners.  The final victim of the day is the Benmohr (Captain J D Sarchet) carrying a full cargo of 6,700 tons of valuable piece goods, including a large and elegant motor boat, from London to Penang and Japan.

Today’s losses include:

  • A Baronet
  • Son-in-law of the Earl of Lonsdale
  • A family that will suffer the loss of two sons


Cap Badge of the Life Guards

Cap Badge of the Life Guards

Today’s highlighted casualty is

Second Lieutenant Eric Dennys Murray (Hussars) is killed at Le Bizet at age 21.  He is the son of ‘Sir’ George Sheppard and Lady Murray. Hearing that Lieutenant Murray has been shot, Sergeant David Brunton sends information to the Squadron Commander and then gallops off with the patrol towards the village. On dismounting he calls for a volunteer to help him, and Private Walter Alfred Jerome at once dismounts. Having sent his horse and that of Jerome back to the inn with the rest of the patrol, Sergeant Brunton and Jerome crawl into the road to Lieutenant Murray, but as they raise him the reports of rifles rang out from point-blank range, and they are obliged to rush to cover. After waiting a short time they make a second attempt to carry away Lieutenant Murray. Upon going out they are again fired upon, but they quickly bring the officer under cover. To their dismay, however, they find he is dead, being wounded in the head, the left hand, and the region of the heart. Both men will be awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for their efforts.

  • Lieutenant and Baronet ‘Sir’ Robert George Vivian Duff (Life Guards) is killed at age 37. He is the only son of ‘Sir’ Charles Garden Assheton-Smith Duff, the 1st He succeeded to the title and estate of his father three weeks after the death of his father. He is the son-in-law of the 4th Earl of Lonsdale.
  • Private James Nixon(King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed at age 23. His brother will be killed in April 1915.

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Thursday 15 October 1914 – We Lost 685

The 3rd Division advances and in spite of the dykes, continues to drive the enemy back.  The town of Estaire is occupied by French cavalry who immediately turn it over to British troops.

At first light the advance on Yabassi is resumed, and after some desultory fighting in the bush, the Germans completely withdraw, leaving the British to occupy the town.  The campaign against Yabassi has cost the life of one officer, three British NCOs, a few blue jackets, and some forty native soldiers.

Today’s losses include:

  •  Holder of the Royal Humane Society Medal for Life Saving
  • An England International and Blackheath Rugby Footballer
  • Sons of clergy
  • Families that will lose two sons
HMS Hawke

HMS Hawke

The Edgar Class cruiser HMS Hawke (Captain Hugh Powell Evan Tudor Williams) is torpedoed and sunk by U9 with the loss of 524 men (only seventy survive).  U9 was also responsible for the sinking of the cruisers HMS Aboukir, HMS Cressy and HMS Hogue last month.

 Losses on HMS Hawke include:

  •  Captain Williams a holder of the Royal Humane Society’s Medal for Life Savings dies at age 40.
  • Surgeon James Henry Digby Watson CB an English International Rugby player killed at age 24. He also played Rugby for Blackheath and London Hospital and was also the Edinburgh University Middleweight Boxing Champion and he represented Scotland versus Ireland in the Long Jung in 1912 which he won.
  • The Paymaster on the Hawke is Alan Murray Austin who dies at age 30. He is the son of Francis Murray Austin, the sometime Archdeacon of Georgetown, Demerara, British Guiana.
  • Midshipman Harry Escombe Ravenhill Jerramis also killed when the ship is sunk. He is the son of the Reverend Arnold Jerram.
  • Petty Officer David Hookham is killed at age 38. His brother will be killed in the sinking of HMS Hampshire in June 1916.
  • Ordinary Seaman Ernest Edward Corder is killed at age 18. His brother will be killed in action in April 1918.
  • Stoker Frederick George Ralph is killed at age 34. His brother will be killed next May. Many of the survivors are picked up by the destroyer Swift, the steamer Modesta and the trawler Ben Rinnes including Chief Gunner James Dennis, who will be killed in July 1917 in the explosion of HMS Vanguard.

Others lost today include:

  • Lieutenant Richard Christopher Gorges Foote (Royal Marine Light Infantry) dies of wounds received nine days earlier at Antwerp at age 20.  He is the son of the Reverend John Vicars Foote.
  • Private Robert MacDonald (Seaforth Highlanders) dies of wounds received at Hazebrouck. His brother will be killed in July 1916.

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Wednesday 14 October 1914 – We Lost 182

Hubert Hamilton

Hubert Hamilton

Air reconnaissance is impossible and artillery is badly hindered due to heavy mist and rain.  Still the first artillery “barrage” of the Great War is fired by the highly trained gunners of the 65th Field Howitzer Battery (Royal Artillery) in support of French infantry at Vermelles.

The 8th Brigade entrenches in the positions taken the previous day while the 9th Brigade which has made less progress pushes forward on its left.  British troops of the 19th Brigade and the 4th Division drive the Germans out of Bailleul which is easily occupied as are Dranoutre, Kemmel, Neuve Eglise, Wulverghem, Messines and Wytschate. The South Staffordshire Regiment reaches Ypres while units of the Cavalry Corps meet with the 3rd Cavalry Division south of Ypres completing a tenuous line of the BEF from the south of the La Bassee Canal to Ypres.

Today’s losses include:

  • Major General H I W Hamilton
  • Son and grandson of a general
  • Families that will lose two children including one that will have a daughter die on service
  • Sons of clergy
  • Sons of Justices of the Peace
  • A multi sport athlete
  • Son of a Member of Parliament
  • Son of a Baronet
  • The first Australian to be killed on the Western Front

 Today’s highlighted casualty is:

Major General Hubert Ian Wetherall Hamilton CVO CB DSO General Officer Commanding 3rd Division is killed at age 53 by a shell while visiting the trenches of the 8th Brigade. He and his Aide de Camp are out to the north of Vieille Chapelle to see why an advance is hung up. They are dismounted and standing on a road when a salvo of shrapnel burst right over them.  One bullet hits him in the forehead and he dies almost immediately. No one else standing in the group is hit. He is the son of Lieutenant General Henry Meade Hamilton and brother of General ‘Sir’ Bruce Hamilton KCB KCVO. He served in Burma 1886-8, Nile 1897-8 and the South Africa War. His body will be returned to England for burial at Cherlton St Mary Churchyard.


  • Major William Lewis Campbell Allan(King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed at Mont des Cats age 43. He is the son of Major General William Allan.
  • Captain Arthur Milford Ker (Gordon Highlanders) is killed at age 32. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Arthur Milford Ker CIE MVO and the grandson of General T D Ker.
  • Captain Cecil Glendower Percival Gilliat (Warwickshire Regiment) is killed at age 29. His brother will be killed in April of next year.
  • Lieutenant Arthur Noel Whitfeld (Irish Rifles) is killed at age 24. He is the son of the Reverend Arthur Lewis Whitfeld Vicar of Hughenden.
  • Lieutenant Claude Davis Sneath (Middlesex Regiment) is killed at age 25. He is the son of George Sneath JP and a member of several Hendon and Middlesex hockey, football and cricket clubs.
  • Lieutenant John Stirling Ainsworth (Hussars) is killed age 24. He is the son of ‘Sir’ John Stirlng Ainsworth MP 1st Baronet and grandson of R R Macredie JP DL MP for Argyllshire.
  • Lieutenant Jasper Carew (West Yorkshire Regiment) is killed at age 20. He is the son of the Reverend Henry William Carew, the Vicar of Rattery, Devon whose daughter will die on service eight days before the Armistice.
  • Second Lieutenant William George Hewitt(Royal Scots) is killed 12 days before his brother will suffer the same fate. The brothers are sons of ‘the Honorable’ William James Hewitt.
  • Second Lieutenant John Dossie Patteson (Dragoon Guards) is killed at age 25. He is the son of Colonel Henry Tyrwhitt Stainforth Patteson JP DL.
  • Corporal of Horse William Thomas Leggett (Life Guards) is killed at Geluwe. He is the first Australian to be killed on the Western Front.

photo from

Tuesday 13 October 1914 – We Lost 431

John Kirwan Gatacre

At 06:30 the 8th Brigade (Middlesex Regiment, Royal Scots and Gordon Highlanders) advance over flat country.  The advance is made difficult by the many dykes, which can only be crossed by means of planks or ladders taken from neighboring houses. Still by mid-day the Middlesex Regiment has captured the village of Croix Barbee and the Royal Scots Pont de Hem. Their advance is checked by a strong counter-attack by the Germans though the British are able to maintain their ground and inflict heavy losses on the enemy. Second Lieutenant Dudley Ralph Turnbull (Gordon Highlanders) will be awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his conspicuous gallantry in serving his Maxim gun when his detachment  are all wounded until he is wounded himself in two places and his gun damaged by a shell.  He subsequently recovers the gun bringing it away on his shoulder. Lieutenant Turnbull will be killed as Lieutenant Colonel commanding 20th Manchester Regiment on 1 October 1917 at age 25.

Advance patrols find the Germans well entrenched on the far side of the Meterenbeek stream, near Hazebrouck.  The 4th and 6th Divisions of Lieutenant General Pulteney’s III Corps are ordered to attack the enemy.  This is the first formal attack by the British Army on the Western Front.  Going in at 14:00 the attack is successful but slow and difficult.  The weather is poor, being misty and wet. By dusk the hamlet of Outtersteene along with Meteren and Mont Noir have all been captured, while the hill outside St. Jans-Cappel (Mont des Cats) is captured by the dismounted members of the Hussars and Lancers together with a battery of the  Royal Horse Artillery.  British losses amount to approximately 1,000 many of which are incurred in a heavy bombardment of Givenchy.  St Omer becomes and will remain until the end of March 1916, the General Headquarters of the British Expeditionary Forces.

Lieutenant George Edward Boscawen (Royal Field Artillery) will be awarded the DSO for gallantly fighting his section in front of La Bassee when all his detachment except himself are wounded and all infantry had fallen back from where the guns are. He will be killed in June 1918.  Sergeant E Howard (Lancashire Regiment) will be awarded the DCM for actions at Meterin when within two hundred yards of the enemy in the open and noticing that the twelve men on the left of his platoon are not firing though he shouts to them to carry on. He crawls along the line at very great risk to make them do so, only to find that all twelve are dead.  He will be killed next month.

The Russian Imperial Navy sends to London a German signal book from the German cruiser Madgeburg, which has run aground in the Gulf of Finland and come under Russian naval gunfire.  The German signal man who is about to destroy the book is killed by a bursting shell. The Russians discover the book and as a result of this find, British cryptographers are able to begin painstakingly decoding German naval wireless messages and locating their adversaries.

Today’s losses include:

  • Water color artist
  • Sons of Generals
  • Multiple examples of families that will lose two sons and one family that will lose four
  • First Class Cricket player
  • Son of a Justice of the Peace
  • Grandsons of the 7th Marquess of Lothian, the 14th Duke of Norfolk and the 1st Baron Lawrence
  • A member of the Dundrum (Dublin) Hockey Club

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

Major John Kirwan Gatacre (Lancers Indian Army attached Hussars) a gifted water color artist is killed at age 32. He is the son of the late General ‘Sir’ William Forbes Gatacre KCB DSO.  Being on leave when at the outbreak of the war he was attached to the 4th (Queen’s Own) Hussars. He had been previously awarded the French decoration the ‘Croix de Chevalier” of the Legion of Honour.


  • Captain Cecil Falconer Tulloh (Middlesex Regiment) is killed at age 32. He is the son of Major General John Stewart Tulloh and nephew of Lieutenant Colonel G S Tulloh (commanding 2nd Gloucestershire Regiment) who will be killed on Hill 60 next year.
  • Captain Arthur Edwin Bradshaw(Lancers Indian Army attached Hussars) is killed during a recon of the village of Bout de Ville at age 32. He is the youngest son of the late Surgeon Major General ‘Sir’ Alexander Frederick Bradshaw KCB and Lady Bradshaw. His wife is the sister of ‘Sir’ William Price and on his mother’s side he came from a family which had seen service at the Battle of Plassey and almost every Indian campaign since.
  • Lieutenant Walter Evelyn Parke (Durham Light Infantry) a first class cricketer is killed in action at age 23. His brother will be killed in September of next year.
  • Lieutenant James Maxwell Pitt (Dorsetshire Regiment) is killed at age 26. His brother will die of wounds in August 1916.
  • Lieutenant Joe Anthony Francis Parkinson (Dorsetshire Regiment) is killed by a sniper at age 26. He is the son of Thomas Parkinson JP.
  • Second Lieutenant G A B Chester(North Staffordshire Regiment) is killed at age 23.  He is the son of the late Reverend J G Chester.
  • Second Lieutenant David Anselm Kerr(Royal Scots) is killed after three days at the front at age 21. He is the son of Major General Lord Ralph Kerr KCB CB and grandson of both the 7th Marquess of Lothian and the 14th Duke of Norfolk.
  • Second Lieutenant Christopher Hal Lawrence(King’s Royal Rifle Corps) is killed at age 20.  He is the son of ‘the Honorable’ Henry Arnold Lawrence and his brother will be killed next January serving the same regiment. They are grandsons of the 1st Baron Lawrence and great nephew of ‘Sir’ Henry Lawrence who was killed at Lucknow.
  • Second Lieutenant Thomas Sydney Smith(Dorsetshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. He is the son of the Reverend Sydney Edward Smith Rector of Sprotborough.
  • Second Lieutenant Arved Waterhouse (Lancaster Regiment) is killed at age 23. He was raised by his aunt and uncle the Reverend Canon Herbert Woodward after he was orphaned.
  • Second Lieutenant Arthur Molesworth Samuels (Irish Fusiliers) is killed at age 25. He is the son of Lieutenant Colonel W F Samuels who served at Ashanti 1973-4 and the grandson of George McCulloch Staff Surgeon of the Life Guards who died on his way home from Crimea. He is also a member of the Dundrum (County Dublin) Hockey Club.
  • Second Lieutenant Greville Arthur Bagot Chester (North Staffordshire Regiment) is killed at Oultserteen at age 23. He is the son of the Reverend John Greville Chester and grandson of Colonel C M Chester DL JP. His brother will be killed in April 1918.
  • Corporal Alfred Arnell (Dorsetshire Regiment) is killed at age 20. His brother will be killed in July 1917.
  • Private George Cleverley (Wiltshire Regiment) is killed at age 32. His brother will be killed in March 1918.
  • Private Luke Bradley (Cheshire Regiment) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed next August. Private John Sanderson Jardin Douglas (King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed at age 25. He is the first of four sons of James & Agnes Douglas of 15 Green Terrace, Selkirk.

Photo from

Monday 12 October 1914 – We Lost 102

Royal Company of Archers Badge

Royal Company of Archers Badge

III Corps takes position to the left of II Corps.  The loss of Vermelles by the French forces Smith-Dorrien to move south to close the gap left by the French withdrawal and attempt to continue the advance eastwards. He leaves five infantry Brigades of 3rd and 5th Divisions facing four enemy Cavalry Divisions and more infantry than he has himself; he places the rest of II Corps south of the canal. The Middlesex Regiment and the Royal Irish on the right cross the Lawe Canal with little opposition, though the Royal Scots have a stubborn fight at Etroa.  As the Germans fall back they suffer heavy casualties due to heavy rifle fire.  The Corps begins to advance in long continuous lines, beating off some enemy counter-attacks as the advance reaches the line Noyelles – Givenchy – Lacouture.  In the meantime Ostend and Zeebrugge are evacuated by the Allies.

HMS Yarmouth (Captain H Cochrane) catches the captured collier Pontoporos and the German collier Markomannia a few miles north of Simaloer.  The German ship attempts to make a run despite a blank shot across her bow; a live six inch shell brings her to a halt after short chase.

Today’s losses include:

  • A man who dies of wounds on his 20th birthday
  • The son of a member of Royal Company of Archers
  • Son of a writer to the Signet
  • Multiple families that will lose two or three sons
  • Multiple sons of clergy
  • Sons, a son-in-law and grandson of Generals

Today’s highlighted casualty is

Second Lieutenant Nigel John Lawson Boyd (Black Watch) dies of wounds received on 14 September today is his 20th birthday at Aisne.  He is the son of William Boyd, The King’s Body Guard for Scotland (Royal Company of Archers) and grandson of ‘Sir’ John Boyd, while his mother is a member of the Society of Writers to Her Majesty’s Signet. He was educated at Winchester College and Sandhurst and has a brother who will be killed in action in April 1915.  In the early misty morning his battalion is acting in concert with the Cameroon Highlanders on the banks of the Aisne and they find themselves opposed to a strong force of the Germans, and come under a very severe fire. Lieutenant Boyd with his platoon has been directed to take up a position, and it has been indicated to him that it must be held at all costs. He personally fires 10 rounds at the Germans with his rifle and empties his revolver. He is standing up and has drawn his Claymore, in turning to his side to give a signal to those of his men who survive; he is shot. The bullet hit the scabbard of his Claymore, glances off it and enters his left hip and lodges in the bladder. He pretends to be dead as the Germans entered his position. He is later rescued by Captain Napier Cameron of the Cameron Highlanders. Today he collapses suddenly from a blood clot and dies shortly afterwards.

  • Major William Lewis Campbell Allan (King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed at age 43. He is the son of Major General William Allan and he served in the South African War.
  • Major Gerald Wilson Bentley(Middlesex Regiment) is killed at age 35.  His brother will be killed in seventeen days and they are sons of Lieutenant Colonel Alfred Wilson Bentley.
  • Captain Hugh Russell Eliott(Worcestershire Regiment) is killed at age 41. He is the son of the late Major General William Russell Eliott grandson of ‘Sir’ Daniel Eliott KCSI and descendant of General G A Eliott Lord Heathfield Defender of Gibraltar.
  • Lieutenant Frank Glencairn De Burgh Edwards(Royal Horse Artillery) is killed at age 29. He is the son of the Reverend R J Edwards.
  • Lieutenant Alfred Northey (Royal Horse Artillery)is killed at age 28.  He is a member of the Worcestershire Cricket Club and the son of the late Reverend Alfred Edward Northey Vicar of Rickmansworth. His uncle will die of wounds in ten days serving in the Durham Light Infantry.
  • Lieutenant Francis Ellison Levita(Hussars) is killed one month prior to his cousin meeting the same fate.
  • Second Lieutenant Charles Stephenson Woollcombe(King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed in action at age 18. He is the son of Lieutenant General ‘Sir’ Charles Louis Woollcombe KCB KCMG and grandson of General ‘Sir’ John Irvine Murray KCB IA.
  • Private Archie Albert Miles (Royal West Kent Regiment) is killed at La Bassee at age 19. His two brothers will be killed within a year.
  • Private Edward Bleackley Stott (Warwickshire Regiment) is killed. He is the son of the Reverend James Augustine Stott.

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Sunday 11 October 1914 – We Lost 40

HMS Active

The minimum height requirement to join the British Army is lowered from 5’ 8” to 5’ 5”.

  • A family that will lose the first of two sons lost in the Navy

Stoker 1st Class Ernest Herbert Carpenter (Royal Navy, HMS Active) dies of illness at age 22.  His brother will be killed serving on HMS Indefatigable at the Battle of Jutland.

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Saturday 10 October 1914 – We Lost 51

Eksaarde Cemetery

Eksaarde Cemetery

The Belgians formally surrender Antwerp.

Fifty-seven British soldiers have been killed during the siege; nine hundred thirty-six are taken prisoner and sent to camps in Germany while 1,600 retreat into neutral Holland, where they will be interned for the remainder of the Great War.

Today’s losses include:

  •  An officer executed by the Germans
  • Five men killed while attempting to escape the Germans
  • A family that loses one of two sons killed in the war
  • A 17-year old soldier
  • Son of clergy

Today’s highlighted casualties are:

 Five members of the Royal Naval Division are shot to death during an attempt to escape the Germans at Eksaarde.  Able Seaman John Whitehead (Collingwood Battalion) is 27, Able Seaman Charles Redmond (Hawke Battalion) is 23, Able Seaman Percy Haggis (Collingwood Battalion) is 25 Corporal Frederick William Henry Napper (Royal Marines) is 44 while Private George Chadwick (Royal Marines) is only 17.

Lieutenant Commander Oswald Hesketh Hanson of the Benbow Battalion, Royal Naval Division is executed by firing squad. He struggled with a sentry who was about to fire on the men trying to escape after they were taken prisoner the previous night and as a result he was shot by firing squad at midday at age 41. He is the son of the Rev. H. Hanson, of Bournemouth. Along with other dead he was one of the men captured from the train at Moerbeke on the night of 9 October 1914.

  •  Private Charles Henry Glaire (Hampshire Regiment) dies of wounds at home at age 32. His brother will be killed in March 1918.

Photo from

Friday 9 October 1914 – We Lost 31


Lovat Scouts Cap Badge

Lovat Scouts Cap Badge

‘Sir’ John French orders II Corps forward – by bus – to the line on the left of the French XXI who are in the Bethune-Fruges area.  The two Cavalry Divisions moving up through Picardy are formed into a Corps under General Allenby and ordered to extend the line to the left, past Merville (which the British will hold until 11 April 1918) and Hazebrouck and on the high ground of the Monts de Flandres and the canal near Ypres. The intention is for the line to continue its advance eastwards.

Antwerp falls to the Germans.

The merchant ship Condor is captured by the German collier Asuncion and the captured merchant ship Farn by trick.  The Germans hoist the Red Ensign and thus induce Condor to approach them, two hundred fifteen miles north east from Cape St. Roque.  She is then sunk using her own explosives.

Today’s losses include:

  •  A battalion commander
  • Son of a Baronet
  • Son-in-law of the Duke of Northumberland

 Today’s highlighted loss is 

Captain (Acting Lieutenant Colonel) Aylmer Edward Maxwell (Lovat Scouts attached Royal Marines and commanding Collingwood Battalion Royal Naval Division) dies of wounds received the previous day defending Antwerp at age 36. He is the son of the 7th Baronet the Right Honorable ‘Sir’ Herbert Eustace Maxwell PC and a son-in-law of the Duke of Northumberland. He served in the South African War with the Grenadier Guards.