Great War Lives Lost

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

Tag: Victoria Cross

Thursday 12 November 1914 – We Lost 342

Seal of Harvard University

Seal of Harvard University

Army Order # 480 approves the addition to each Division of a motor machine gun battery to be designated a unit of the Royal Field Artillery and known as the Motor Machine Gun Service.

A reconnaissance in force from Sanniyeh inflicts losses on the Turks near Saihan. In spite of poor conditions including thick dust, mud and heat the remainder of Force D is landed.

 Today’s losses include:

  •  Victoria Cross winner
  • A General
  • Son of a General
  • Son of a Baronet
  • Stepson of the Director of the Canadian Pacific Railway
  • Grandson of clergy
  • Grandson of a Justice of the Peace
  • A man whose twin brother was killed on service last century
  • Son of the 5th Earl of Cadogan
  • Grandson of the 1st Earl of Munster
  • Nephew of a man who died of wounds in the Crimean War
  • The first graduate of an American University killed in the Great War
  • Son of the President of the Blackheath Harriers
  • Multiple families that will lose two sons in the Great War

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

Brigadier General Charles FitzClarence VC General Officer commanding the 1st Guards Brigade is killed in action at age 49. He was awarded the Victoria Cross at Mafeking on the 14 October 1899 during the South African War. His twin brother was killed in 1897-8 at Abu-Hamed and they are sons of Captain ‘the Honorable’ George FitzClarence Royal Navy the 3rd son of the 1st Earl of Munster. Another son of the 1st Earl died of wounds received in the attack on Redan in the Crimea. Brigadier General FitzClarence is also the son-in-law of the 6th Duke of Marlborough. He is also the father of the 6th Earl of Munster.

  •  Major ‘the Honorable’ William George Sidney CadoganMVO (Hussars attached General Staff) is killed at age 35.  He is son of the 5th Earl Cadogan KG and served in the South African War and was Equerry to H R H Prince of Wales from 1912 to 1914 and his Aide de Campe during his India tour of 1905-6.
  • Major Thomas Philip Godman-Dorington(Dragoons) is killed at age 37. He is the son of the late Major General Richard Temple Godman and a veteran of the South African War.
  • Captain Keith Bethune Mackenzie (Seaforth Highlanders attached Gordon Highlanders) is killed at age 34. A veteran of the South African War he is the grandson of the Reverend Neil Bethune.
  • Captain Duncan Collisson Willey Thomas (Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders) is killed at age 23. He is the son of A P Thomas the 1st
  • Lieutenant George Williamson (Duke of Wellington’s Regiment) dies of wounds received four days prior at age 31. He is the son of Lady Skinner and stepson of ‘Sir’ Thomas Skinner Director of the Canadian Pacific Railway. A Graduate of Harvard in 1905 he is the first graduate of an American University to be killed in the War.
  • Lieutenant Denis Duncan Philby (Dublin Fusiliers attached Munster Fusiliers) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed in May 1916.
  • Second Lieutenant Charles Alexander Kenneth Anderson (King’s Royal Rifle Corps) is killed at age 21. He is the grandson of Charles Edward Tuck JP.
  • Second Lieutenant Francis Pepys DSO (Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry) is killed at age 23. His brother was killed last August.
  • Private James Thomas Stanley (Warwickshire Regiment) is killed at age 22. His brother will be killed in August 1918.
  • Private Bartlett Cecil Elmes (Sussex Regiment) is killed at age 31. His brother will be killed next May.
  • Private Tom Crafter (London Scottish) is killed. His brother will be killed in July 1917 and they are sons of the president of the Blackheath Harriers.

Photo from wikipedia.org

Wednesday 11 November 1914 – We Lost 777

 

Victoria Cross

Victoria Cross

The torpedo gunboat HMS Niger is torpedoed in the English Channel.  She later explodes and sinks though there are no casualties.

British troops pass through the small village of Oulchy-le-Chateau in their advance on the Aisne.

At 10:00 the 2nd Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry are turned out to back up the 1st Brigade which has been attacked while holding the ground a little to the north of the Ypres-Menin road. They are ordered to Westhoek to get in touch with the 1st Division, who are holding up reinforcements on the right. In spite of a barrage that lays shells about them, the Oxfords reach Westhoek without loss. Here they get under cover and observe the Northamptonshire Regiment advancing on their right, into the southern part of the wood lying to the south of Westhoek. At the same time Colonel Lushington of the Royal Artillery sends gunners, cooks, etc armed with rifles against the Germans in Nonne Bosschen Wood.

Lieutenant Colonel Henry R Davies sends two companies to clear Nonne Bosschen Wood (Nun’s Wood) near Ypres, advancing from the northwest to southeast.  They drive the Germans before them killing and capturing many. Two more companies follow in support.  When the first two companies, ‘A’ and ‘B’ come out on the southeastern edge of the wood they are joined by the Northamptons on the right and by some Connaught Rangers and Sappers on the left. They force the Germans out of the trenches; some of the enemy turning and running when the attack is thirty or forty yards off, others surrender. Most of those who run are shot. Casualties to the Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry amount to twenty-seven, of whom five are killed.  There is still another trench held by the Germans in front, but before an attack can be mounted on it French artillery begins to drop shrapnel into the British front line, not realizing how far it has advanced. It takes some time to inform the French of this error and by this time dark has set in.

Near Becelaere, Belgium, Captain Walter Lorrain Brodie (Highland Light Infantry) leads a charge to evict the enemy from a portion of our trenches that they have succeeded in occupying. He bayonets several of the enemy himself and relieves a dangerous situation. As a result of his actions, 80 of the enemy are killed and 51 taken prisoner. For his actions on this day he will be awarded the Victoria Cross.

 Today’s losses include:

  •  Multiple examples of brothers killed together
  • A General
  • Son of a General
  • Grandson of a General
  • Son of a Baronet
  • Son of a former Member of Parliament
  • Grandson of an Admiral
  • Grandson of a Justice of the Peace
  • Son-in-law of clergy
  • Uncle of a man killed yesterday
  • Battalion commander
  • Multiple families that will lose two and three sons
  • A man whose daughter will be born next year
  • Two members of the Surrey Constabulary

 Today’s highlighted casualties are:

 Brothers Privates James F and John William Stallard are among those killed in the Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry. John is a boxer of some repute in the Army and had gone into strict training for a bout at the National Sporting Club when the war broke out. Because of his prowess in the ring he was known as ‘The Mad Mullah’. He dies at age 26 while his older brother is 28.  They are sons of James and Florence Stallard of St Mary Street, New Bradwell, Bucks.

Another set of brothers are killed on this day while serving together. Private Thomas and James Freemantle (Scots Guards) have both served in the Guards prior to the war then joined the Surrey Constabulary together and both resigned to rejoin the Guards upon the outbreak of the war. The brothers are both 26. They are sons of William and Sarah Freemantle of Easton, Winchester.

  •  Brigadier General Norman Reginald McMahonDSO, General Officer Commanding 4th Battalion Royal Fusiliers attached 10th Infantry Brigade Headquarters, 3rd Division is killed in action at age 48. The General tries to rally support troops east of Hooge, on the south side of the Ypres-Menin Road when he is suddenly seen to sink to one knee and begins to remove his legging as though hit in the leg. At that moment a shell bursts close to him killing him instantly. He is the son of General ‘Sir’ Thomas W McMahon CB Baronet and he served in Burma from 1886 to 1887 and in the South African War.
  • Major Alfred Herbert Tyler (Royal Engineers) is killed at age 43. He is the son of the late ‘Sir’ H W Tyler MP and grandson of General ‘Sir’ C W Pasley KCB. He served in Sierra Leone 1898-9 and in the South African War. His nephew was killed yesterday at the same place while also serving in the Royal Engineers.
  • Major Harold Henry Norman (Temporarily commanding 1st Northamptonshire Regiment) is killed in the above action at age 47. He served in Tirah in 1897-8 and Zakka Khel in 1908. He is the son-in-law of the Reverend Henry Wood.
  • Captain William Maynard Carlisle-Crowe (Warwickshire Regiment attached Northamptonshire Regiment) is killed at age 42. He is a Swiss Alpine skier and the son of General Thomas Caralisle-Crowe.
  • Captain and Adjutant Ewen James Brodie (Cameron Highlanders) is killed when he is shot by a sniper at age 36 in the Nonne Bosch Wood. He is the son of J C J Brodie Lord Lieutenant of the County of Nairn.
  • Captain James William Lennox Sprot (Black Watch) is killed at age 28 less than three weeks after his brother was killed serving in the Cameron Highlanders.
  • Captain Arthur Edward Jeune Collins (Royal Engineers) is killed at age 29 while signaling for more men to protect the flank of his trench. Typically known by his initials A E J Collins is an English cricketer and soldier. He is most famous for achieving the highest-ever recorded score in cricket: as a 13-year-old schoolboy, he scored 628 not out over four afternoons in June 1899. Collins’ record-making innings drew a large crowd and increasing media interest; spectators at the Old Cliftonian match being played nearby were drawn away to watch a junior school house cricket match. One brother will be killed in August 1916 while his second brother will die of illness on service in February 1917.
  • Captain Hugh James Shaw (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 28. His brother will be killed in November 1915.
  • Captain Arthur Kenneth Puzey (London Regiment) is killed at age 34. His daughter will be born next year.
  • Captain William Augustus Portman Foster(South Staffordshire Regiment) dies of wounds in a German hospital at Frankfort-on-Main of wounds received at Gheluvelt on 31 October at age 27. He is the son of ‘Sir’ William Yorke Foster the 3rd Baronet and Lady Foster.
  • Second Lieutenant Thomas Symonds Holmes (West Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 22. He is the grandson of Admiral of the Fleet ‘Sir’ Thomas M Symonds GCB.
  • Lance Corporal James Robert Newman (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 18. His brother was killed less than three weeks earlier.
  • Private William Stoyan(Cameron Highlanders) is killed at age 32. He has two brothers who will be killed later in the Great War, one in 1916 the other in 1918.
  • Lance Corporal Robert Brown(Royal Scots Fusiliers) is killed at age 25.  His brother Peter Hume Brown will fall in November 1916.
  • Private John Hamon Massy (Cameron Highlanders) is killed at age 35. His brother will be killed next month.
  • Private George Etherington (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 28 less than two weeks after his brother was killed serving in the West Surrey Regiment.
  • Rifleman Robert James Adair (Irish Rifles) is killed at age 24. His brother will die on service in March 1919.
  • Gunner Sidney Herbert Toll (Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 23. His brother died on service at home in the first week of the war.
  • Private Edward Webster Wood (Scots Guards) is killed at age 34. He is the first of three brothers who are killed in the Great War.

Turks forces attack the British camp at Sanniyeh with heavy loss and are forced to withdraw four miles.

  •  Major Richard Ducat (Infantry Indian Infantry) dies of wounds at age 43. He is the son of Major General Claude Malet Ducat and grandson of Hugh Hamersley JP. He was member of the force that fought on the North West Frontier of India in 1897-8.

Vice Admiral ‘Sir’ Doveton Sturdee departs Devonport his flag on HMS Invincible in company with HMS Inflexible on a voyage to the South Atlantic to search for the German squadron under Vice Admiral Graf Maximillan von Spee. At the same time HMS Princess Royal is dispatched to the Caribbean to guard the Panama Canal.

At a matinee at the Empire Theater John George Lambton 3rd Earl of Durham whose brother was killed on the Western Front less than two weeks earlier states the opinion that he would “wish that the Germans would drop a shell among these footballers some Saturday afternoon.  I really think it would be the best method of waking up the young men of Sunderland”.  In two weeks 16 members of The Hearts of Midlothan join the 16th Royal Scots becoming the only team in the history of British football to enlist en masse in the armed force. Seven members of the first team will lose their lives in the Great War.

Saturday 7 November 1914 – We Lost 741

Victoria Cross

Victoria Cross

Tsing-tau falls to British and Japanese forces and two thousand three hundred prisoners are taken. The British casualties during the siege are 2 officers wounded, 12 men killed, and 61 wounded. Numerous congratulatory messages are exchanged between the British and the Japanese. Lord Kitchener sends his felicitations to the Japanese Minister of War at Tokyo: “Please accept my warmest congratulations on the success of the operations against Tsing-tau. Will you be so kind as to express my felicitations to the Japanese forces engaged? The British Army is proud to have been associated with its gallant Japanese comrades in this enterprise”.

Two American companies accept orders from the British Admiralty for twelve flying boats.

 Today’s casualties include:

  •  A Victoria Cross winner
  • A grandson of the first victim of the India Mutiny
  • A man whose uncle was killed in the South African Wara
  • Multiple sons of clergy
  • A grandson of clergy
  • Son of a General
  • Cousin of a General
  • Two brothers killed together
  • Multiple families that will lose two and three sons in the Great War
  • A man who had two brothers lose their lives in the service of King & Country before the Great War
  • Multiple sons of Baronets
  • A cousin of a Baronet
  • Grandson of a former Lord Mayor of London
  • A man who played one first class cricket match for Worcestershire

 Today’s highlighted casualties is

 At Zillebeke, Belgium, when leading an attack against the Germans under very heavy fire, Captain John Franks Vallentin (South Staffordshire Regiment) is struck down and on rising to continue the attack and immediately killed at age 32. The capture of the enemy’s trenches which immediately follows is in a great measure due to the confidence which the men have in their captain, arising from his many previous acts of great bravery and ability. For his actions Captain Vallentin will be awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross. He also served in the South Africa War. Vallentin is the nephew of the noted naturalist Rupert Vallentin. His grandfather ‘Sir’ James Vallentin was Knight Sheriff of London, and his cousin Archibald Thomas Pechey, the lyricist and author, adapted the family name for his nom-de-plune ‘Valentine’. His grandfather Colonel Finnis was the first victim of the Indian Mutiny and another uncle, Major Valentin was killed in the South African War.

  •  Captain Arnold Stearns Nesbitt (Worcestershire Regiment) is killed at age 36. He is a cricketer who played one first class match for Worcestershire in 1914.
  • Captain Richard Alexander Noel Smyth (Royal Garrison Artillery) dies of wounds at age 31. He is the grandson of the Reverend J Coke Vicar of Ilebrewers near Taunton Somerset the former Principal and Chaplain of the Lawrence Military Asylum, Sanawar India.
  • Captain Beauchamp Oswald Duff(Gurkha Rifles) is killed at age 34.  He is the son of General ‘Sir’ Beauchamp GCB commander of the Army in India and Lady Duff.  He had served in the Waziristan and Somaliland campaigns 1901-4.
  • Captain Lionel Alfred Francis Cane(East Lancashire Regiment) is killed leading an attack on an enemy trench at age 29. He is the son of the Reverend Alfred Granger Cane of Great Paxton Vicarage, St Neots Hunts and 1st cousin to Lieutenant General ‘Sir’ Edmund Allenby KCB.
  • Captain Edward Basil Chichester (East Kent Regiment) dies of wounds at age 33. He is a veteran of the South African War and has had two brothers previously die in the service of their King one dying on service in 1898 and the second being killed in 1902 in Somaliland.
  • Lieutenant Sydney Alexander Goldsmid (Worcestershire Regiment) is killed at age 21. He is the second cousin of ‘Sir’ Julian Goldsmid Baronet and related to ‘Sir’ Isaac Francis Goldsmid Baronet.
  • Lieutenant Jessie Marson Atkin(Sherwood Foresters attached Worcestershire Regiment) is killed at age 23.  His brother will be killed in May 1918. Lieutenant Atkin is the son of Mr H Atkin, New Westwood and entered The University College, Nottingham in the session 1910 – 11.  While at college he passed the final examinations of the Bachelor of Arts Degree of London. He received his military training under Captain Trotman in the Officers Training Corps, passing ‘A’ and ‘B’ Military examinations.  At the completion of his college career he applied and was accepted for the special reserve of officers.  A touching incident in connection with the announcement of his death is that his sister who was employed at the Jacksdale Post Office was the one to receive the message informing the family of his death.  
  • Lieutenant Reginald Nigel Gipps (Scots Guards) is killed at age 23. He is the son of the late General ‘Sir’ Reginald Gipps GCB.
  • Lieutenant John Beauclerk Vandeleur(Leicestershire Regiment) is killed in action at age 27. He is the son of Colonel J S Vandeleur CB.
  • Second Lieutenant Gillachrist Moore (Sussex Regiment) is killed at age 20. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Norman Moore the 1st
  • Second Lieutenant Richard Hutton(Leicestershire Regiment attached Warwickshire Regiment) is killed at age 23. He is the son of the Reverend Joseph Henry Hutton Rector of West Heslerton.
  • Second Lieutenant James Neil Grant McGrigor (Gordon Highlanders) dies of wounds in London received 24 October at age 19. He is the son of ‘Sir’ James McGrigor.
  • Second Lieutenant Murray Stuart Pound (West Surrey Regiment) dies of wounds received 21 October at age 23. His brother will be killed in April 1917 and they are sons of ‘Sir’ John Lulham Pound the 2nd Baronet and grandsons of ‘Sir’ John Pound Baronet Lord Mayor of London 1904-5.
  • Sergeants and brothers Alfred James (age 29) and William John Cogan age 33 (Bedfordshire Regiment) are killed together. A third brother will be killed in next March.
  • Sergeant William Peart (Norfolk Regiment) is killed at age 22. His brother Henry will also lose his life in the war.
  • Lance Corporal Jake Clarke Andrews (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 23. His brother will be killed in July 1915.
  • Lance Corporal Percy Shaw (South Staffordshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. His brother will be killed next August on Gallipoli.
  • Lance Corporal Charles Lamond (Black Watch) dies of wounds. His brother will be killed in May 1917.
  • Private Ernest Herbert Bygrave (Bedfordshire Regiment) becomes the first of three brothers who will lose their lives in the Great War. They are sons of the late Reverend Joseph Hutton.
  • Private William Gray(Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 18.  His brother will be killed in May 1918.
  • Drummer George Edward Ransom (West Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 27. His brother will be killed next May.
  • Private William Cowan Fulton (Seaforth Highlanders) is killed at age 31. His brother will be killed next May.
  • Private Patrick O’Connell (Inniskilling Fusiliers) is killed at age 24. His brother John will also lose his life in the Great War.
  • Private Samuel Hateley (Warwickshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. His brother will be killed in April 1918.                                                                                                                                                  

photo from wikipedia.org

Monday 1 November 1914 – We Lost 2,447

HMS Good Hope 1914

HMS Good Hope 1914

Shortly after noon Cradock’s squadron is whole again, HMS Glasgow having rejoined.  The admiral signals for his ships to spread out at 25-mile intervals and sweep north to look for the enemy. Graf von Spee hopes to cut off HMS Glasgow before she can rejoin Cradock, realizing she will have to leave Coronel because of the 24-hour rule. Cradock’s ships hear a great deal of wireless traffic between German supply ships and SMS Leipzig as Graf von Spee has been using Leipzig to transmit and receive all wireless messages between his squadron and its supply ships so as not to give away the presence of the other cruisers. This works as Cradock heads north to trap the Leipzig before she can rejoin Graf von Spee. This action leads to the dramatic situation this afternoon when each admiral believes he is taking his full squadron to cut off a single enemy light cruiser. In reality the two formations are steaming towards each other at a combined speed of almost forty knots. The admirals, friends since their days on the China Station during the Boxer rebellion, are about to meet again. By late afternoon Cradock’s squadron is still fanning out and moving in a northerly direction. They are about thirty miles from Arauco Bay, where the port of Coronel is situated. The flagship is the outermost ship, close to forty miles from HMS Glasgow.  At 16:30 the light cruiser’s lookouts sight smoke on the eastern horizon. Captain Luce gives orders to turn to starboard and increase speed.  A few minutes later HMS Monmouth and HMS Good Hope turn east in support of HMS Glasgow. Very soon the lookouts are able to recognize the hull and upper works of SMS Leipzig.  As HMS Glasgow gets closer the lookouts see more patches of smoke on the horizon. These are soon identified as coming from four funneled cruisers, and HMS Glasgow turns back and signals, ‘Enemy armored cruisers in sight’.  The Glasgow’s wireless operators can hear the high pitched scream in their earphones coming from German Telefunken sets trying to jam their transmissions.  They are not certain whether the flagship has received their signal. All three British ships head at full speed toward HMS Good Hope to warn Cradock that instead of trapping a single light cruiser, he is running into Graf von Spee’s entire squadron.

SMS Leipzig identifies HMS Glasgow at about the same time and follows her.  She soon sees the smoke from the rest of Cradock’s squadron.  Leipzig reverses her direction and signals the news to Admiral Graf von Spee. The German admiral realizes that he has found the British squadron, not a single light cruiser. He orders his ships to close up and form a line-heading southwest. Cradock orders his ships to change direction to southeast by east and form a line headed by HMS Good Hope, followed by HMS Monmouth, HMS Glasgow and HMS Otranto. They complete these maneuvers by 17:45. The two squadrons are now approximately 17 miles apart and the Germans soon change course to southwest by west. This brings the battle lines into rapidly converging paths.  At this point Cradock still has time to break off contact and move south to join forces with HMS Canopus, which is about three hundred miles away.  He realizes that if he does, Graf von Spee will not have enough time to catch him before nightfall.  He could then return the next morning, strengthened with HMS Canopus, to attack the German squadron, if he can find it. Even if it slipped by him, the Admiralty has assured him that Admiral Stoddart has a strong force waiting for the Germans in the Atlantic. Cradock has to know that he has little or no chance against Graf von Spee’s superior force, but his orders are, ‘Destroy enemy cruisers’.  If he cannot do this, he might at least damage them enough that they will have to seek internment in a Chilean port, or else face the next British squadron at a disadvantage.  One or two telling hits on the German large ships might weaken Graf von Spee’s squadron so much that it is no longer a serious threat.

Cradock resolves to attack as soon as possible, while he still has the sun behind him.  Sunset is due at about 18:30.  As the sun sets lower on the horizon, its rays will be directly in the German gunners eyes.  This will make it hard for them to see Cradock’s ships in the distance, while the German ships will be clearly outlined for the British gunners. On the other hand the advantage will swing in favor of the Germans when the sun goes below the horizon.  The British ships will be silhouetted against the suns afterglow, while their ships will be difficult to see in the waning daylight. With his superior speed Graf von Spee is able to keep the distance between the two lines at 15,000 yards, well outside of gunnery range. At 18:04 Cradock gives the order to turn 45 degrees to port.  He desperately wants to close the range before the sun begins to set, but Graf von Spee orders a similar turn and keeps his distance. At 18:18 Cradock signals HMS Canopus, ‘I am going to attack the enemy’, although the German ships are 3,000 yards beyond his range at the time. Captain Grant signals back that he still has two hundred and fifty miles to go before he can reach Cradock’s position.  Graf von Spee now allows the gap between the two lines to close steadily.  By 19:00, when the sun has just dipped below the horizon, it is down to 12,300 yards.  At 19:04 the German admiral gives the order to open fire. At this range Graf von Spee’s twelve 8.2-inch guns face Cradock’s two 9.2-inch guns. SMS Scharnhorst’s first salvo lands 500 yards short of HMS Good Hope and her second 500 yards beyond, according to an observer on HMS Glasgow.  With an awful inevitability the third salvo smashed into Good Hope.  One shell strikes her forward 9.2 inch turret, which erupts in flames that shoot higher than 100 feet into the air.  At one stroke the gun crew is wiped out before they have fired a single shot.  The turret is turned into a useless, twisted mass of steel.  Cradock’s heavy guns are now reduced to one.

 

At almost the same time, SMS Gneisenau opens fire on HMS Monmouth. She obtains a similar straddling pattern with her first three salvos. A shell from the third salvo hits the Monmouth’s forward gun turret and sets it ablaze. Within minutes Good Hope and Monmouth are suffering terrible punishment. The German gunners on each ship manage to fire a broadside of 6 shells every 20 seconds. Cradock’s flagship replies with her lone 9.2-inch gun.  HMS Monmouth can use half of her 6-inch guns, which are at the limit of their range. The ships are now heading into the teeth of a Force 6 wind. It is approaching gale conditions, and heavy seas are breaking over their bows and sweeping their forward decks. The British main deck guns cannot be used because of the danger of flooding the casemates. Also their range finders have become so encrusted with salt from the sea spray that they are useless.  No hits are registered on the two German cruisers. By this time SMS Leipzig has begun to engage Glasgow, which fires back with her 6-inch guns. SMS Dresden opens fire on HMS Otranto.  After one salvo, which falls short, the armed merchant cruiser pulls out of line toward the open sea. She is a large vulnerable target and can only help the Germans find an accurate range on the British line. Captain Edwards signals Cradock, suggesting that he keep the Otranto out of range.  The reply is not completed.  “There is danger; proceed at your utmost speed…” Edwards is not sure what the admiral intends, so he keeps on a course parallel to the squadron, just outside the Dresden’s range.

Ten minutes after Graf von Spee’s order to open fire, the battle of Coronel is as good as over. Cradock keeps closing range until it is down to 5,500 yards.  This only makes the firing by SMS Scharnhorst and SMS Gneisenau more devastating, as they are now able to use their 5.9-inch guns also. By 19:30 the Good Hope has been hit between 30 and 40 times.  She is heavily damaged in the forward part of the ship, especially the bridge and foretop area where Cradock is directing his squadron. A hail of shells have smashed through her decks and started fires in the interior of the ship. In what may have been a last desperate attempt to inflict some damage on her tormentors, the crippled flagship slides out of line toward the enemy, some of its guns still firing.  Graf von Spee, fearing that she is going to fire torpedoes, orders his ships to turn away. According one of HMS Glasgow’s officers, ‘At 19:50, there was a terrible explosion between her main mast and her funnel, the flames reaching a height of over two hundred feet’.  The forward magazine must have been ignited by one of the many fires blazing on the ship. HMS Good Hope drifts off into the gloom and smoke and neither side sees her again. No one actually sees her sink, but she could not have stayed afloat for very long in her stricken condition, and must have gone down around 20:00. She takes the admiral with her into the icy depths, drowning all the men and boys who were still alive out of a crew of nine hundred. Because the battle is still raging, no one, British or German, can stop to look for possible survivors.

HMS Monmouth is in almost as much distress, having been hit in excess of thirty times.  The ship is ablaze and listing to port, although some of her six-inch guns are still firing sporadically.  For another twenty minutes SMS Gneisenau pounds her at short range with both 8.2 and 5.9 inch shells, until she yaws out of line to starboard, away from the German onslaught, sinking by the head. Captain Luce of HMS Glasgow cannot tell in the semi-darkness how bad her condition is and signals to Monmouth at 20:15, ‘Are you all right?’ Captain Brandt replies, ‘I want to get stern to sea.  I am making water badly forward’. Through a break in the smoke, Luce sees three ships approaching in the moonlight and signals to Brandt again, ‘Can you steer northwest?  The enemy are following us astern.’  There is no reply. When the Glasgow draws nearer, it is obvious that the Monmouth is in desperate straits. The captain of the Glasgow has no choice but to save his ship. The Good Hope and Monmouth are both finished as fighting ships, and the Otranto has fled to the west at 19:45 when her captain sees that the flagship is doomed. The Germans are left with the light cruiser as their only target. She has led a charmed life so far, with only four of her crew wounded, but now every time she fires her guns, the flashes light up the darkness and attract fire from all four German ships. Luce knows that just one 8.2-inch salvo from Scharnhorst or Gneisenau would blow his ship apart, and he gives the order to cease-fire. He has already taken five hits from the Leipzig and the Dresden, which has concentrated on the Glasgow after the Otranto pulled out of line. Although three of the shells fail to explode, one has caused a large hole just above the waterline. Luce can do nothing to help the Monmouth, so he gives the order to head west at full speed.  He wants to find the Otranto and heads south to warn the Canopus to turn back. Monmouth’s ordeal is not yet over. SMS Nurnberg finally catches up with the German squadron at 21:00 and comes upon the helpless cruiser, which she identifies by searchlight. The Monmouth is listing so badly that her guns can not be trained on the Nurnberg. The Monmouth’s White Ensign is still flying, so the captain of the Nurnberg gives the order to fire at point blank range, as she gives no sign of surrender. The battered ship finally rolls over on her beam-ends and disappears bow first beneath the waves. No one out of her crew of approximately seven hundred survives. Because of the high seas and the wind blowing at thirty knots, it would be dangerous and probably futile to lower boats to look for survivors in the darkness. The British later agree that the Germans could have done nothing to save any of the Monmouth’s crew who may have still been alive.

In the space of two hours the Royal Navy has suffered the loss of two heavy cruisers and nearly sixteen hundred men and boys. This is the first serious British naval defeat for one hundred years since the budding United States navy defeated a British fleet on Lake Champlain in 1814.

 Today’s losses both on land and sea include:

  •  A Rear Admiral
  • Sons of Admirals
  • Sons of Generals
  • Grandson of a General
  • A Naval Chaplain
  • Sons of Clergy
  • Son of the Artist William Lionel Wyllie
  • Son of a Judge of the High Court of Madras
  • Son of the 5th Baron Forester
  • The son of the 2nd Baron Dunleath
  • The son of the 1st Earl of Ancaster
  • Grandson of the 4th Earl of Radnor
  • Son-in-law of the 5th Earl of Strafford
  • Godson of the 1st Lord Iddlesleigh
  • Brother of a Baronet
  • Multiple sons of Baronets
  • Grandson of a Baronet
  • Multiple sons-in-law of Baronets
  • A Member of the Victorian Order (MVO)
  • A man whose son will be killed in the Great War
  • A man whose son will be killed in the Second World War
  • A man whose father will be killed later in the War
  • Multiple men who will have children born after their death
  • Twins killed together
  • Brothers killed together
  • Families that will lose two, three and four sons in this war and in the South African War
  • Winner of the 1909 Open Singles Championship at Salisbury Lawn Tennis Club
  • Scottish Rugby International
  • Member of the Foresters Cricket Club
  • Champion Boxer of the 13th Hussars
  • Son of a Writer to the Signet
  • Son of the former Editor of the Clevedon Mercury
  • Sons of Justices of the Peace
  • A Schoolmaster
  • An Aide-de-camp to the Viceroy of India from 1910-12
  • A Battalion commander
  • Great Grandson of a man who died from effects of wounds he received in the Peninsula War
  • Son of the Inspector General of Police in Berar

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

Private Robert Theodore Morrison Wyllie (London Scottish) is killed on the Western Front at age 26. His brother will be killed in July 1916 and they are sons of William Lionel Wyllie artist in oils and water colors of maritime themes. Wyllie painted HMS Good Hope in 1901 the year it was launched.

 HMS Good Hope 1901HMS Good Hope 1901

 HMS Good Hope casualties include:

  •  Rear Admiral ‘Sir’ Christopher George CradockCB KCVO the 4th son of the late Christopher Cradock, Esquire.
  • Her Captain is Philip Francklin MVO who is the son-in-law of ‘Sir’ Baldwin W Walter the Baronet.
  • Commander Arthur Tudor Darley is killed at age 38. His son will be born 15th His brother will be killed commanding 4th Hussars in March 1918.
  • Lieutenant Commander Percival Van Straubenzeeis killed at age 33.  He is the son of Major General T Van Straubenzee.
  • Lieutenant Commander Godfrey Berkeley John Benyon is killed in the sinking of the ship at age 31. He leaves a widow with a son and a daughter who will be born on Christmas Day.
  • Lieutenant Commander Gerald Bruce Gaskell is killed. His brother will be killed in Africa in August 1917 and they are sons of the Reverend Thomas Kynaston Gaskell rector of Longthorpe.
  • Captain Charles Burnett Partridge (Royal Marines Light Infantry) is killed at age 34. His brother will be killed on the Western Front in two days.
  • Lieutenant Douglas Courtenay Tudorthe son of Admiral Tudor is killed at age 23.
  • Lieutenant John Maurice Haig Fisher is killed at age 22. He is the son of Brigadier General J Fisher CB.
  • Sub Lieutenant Francis John Anson Cotterkilled age 20. He is the son of Major General F G Cotter.
  • Fleet Surgeon James Joseph Walsh is killed at age 51. His son will be killed next August.
  • Paymaster George Bolster Owens is killed at age 29. He has twice been mentioned for exceptional services rendered while Secretary to Rear Admiral Cradock during the disturbances in Mexico.
  • Midshipman Geoffrey Marischal Dowdingis killed at age 19. He is the son of the Reverend Charles Dowding Rector of Tichborne.
  • Chaplain Arthur Henry John Pittis also killed.
  • Petty Officer James Walsh is killed. His brother will be killed in July 1916.
  • Petty Officer Edwin Stewart Thomas Parsons is killed at age 28. His brother will die of illness on service in the Royal Navy in 1918.
  • Chief Engine Room Artificer Francs Thomas Cox drowns at age 44. His son will be killed in the Second World War.
  • Twin brothers Edward and Harry Turner are killed together while serving as Stokers First Class on HMS Good Hope. The 33-year olds have 8 children between them.
  • Able Seaman Frank Bateman is killed at age 29. His brother will be killed next March.
  • Plumber Henry Russell is killed. His brother will be killed in April 1917.
  • Stoker 1st Class Thomas Booth is killed at age 22. His brother will be lost on HMS Indefatigable at Jutland.

 HMS Monmouth casualties include:

  •  The Captain of HMS Monmouth, Frank Brandt, is killed. He is the son of a Judge of the High Court of Madras and is 42-years old.
  • Captain Geoffrey Maurice Ivan Herford(Royal Marine Light Infantry) is killed at age 32. He is the son of the Reverend Percy Michener Herford (Rector of Christ Church, Trinity Road, Leith and Canon of St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh) who will lose another son in May 1915.
  • Commander Spencer Dundas Forbes is killed at age 40 sixteen days before his only child a son is born.
  • Lieutenant Commander ‘the Honorable’ Peter Robert Heathcote-Drummond-Willoughbyis killed at age 29.  He is the son of the 1st Earl of Ancaster and grandson of Brigadier General ‘Sir’ Walter Ross.
  • Lieutenant Wilfred Dixon Stirling is killed. He is the first of three sons of Brigadier General J W Stirling CB CMG DL to be killed in the Great War and dies at age 28.
  • Midshipman Christopher Musgraveage 15. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Richard Musgrave, the 12th
  • Midshipman John Richardson Le Geyet Pullenis also lost on HMS Monmouth at age 15. He is the son of the late Paymaster Rear Admiral W Pullen.
  • Midshipman George Watson Muirwho is also 15 is also killed.  He is the son of Andrew Gray Muir a writer to the Signet.
  • Midshipman Gervase Ronald Bruce is lost at age 15. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ Hervey Juckes Lloyd Bruce 4th
  • Clerk Basil St Merryn Cardewis killed at age 19.  He is the son of the Reverend William Berry Cardew Vicar of Perlethorpe.
  • Chief Petty Officer Frederick Sercombe is killed at age 51. He is the son of the former Editor of the Clevedon Mercury.
  • Stoker 2nd class John Fairbankis killed at at age 20. His brother will be killed on the Western Front in May 1917.
  • Leading Boatman George Neal is killed. Three months later his four year old son will die of illness.
  • Sixteen year old signal boy Alfred Stanley Appleby is also killed. His older brother will die on service at home next November.
  • Plumber Reginald Arthur Pigott is killed at age 36. His brother will die of illness on service in September 1917.
  • Sailmaker Daniel Murphy is killed at age 37. His brother will be killed when submarine H10 is sunk in January 1918.
  • Leading Seaman John Cyril Lock is killed at age 24. His brother was killed last September.
  • Able Seaman John Walter Beer is killed at age 20. His brother will be killed next March.
  • Able Seaman Joseph Davis is killed at age 22. His brother will be killed in May 1915.
  • Ordinary Seaman Charles Gaggbloom is lost at age 19. His father will be lost when the Steamship Lodaner is torpedoed in April 1918.

Captain Sidney Drury-Lowe takes HMS Chatham, making skillful use of the tide in the Rufiji River in East Africa moves as close to shore as possible to gain range on SMS Konigsberg. He fires several rounds from Chatham’s 6-inch guns but the shells land well short of the Somali and even farther short of Konigsberg which is anchored about a mile beyond Somali. Drury-Lowe orders some of Chatham’s tanks to be flooded to give the ship a five-degree list, to increase the elevation of the guns, but this still is not enough to reach the German ships.  As a result of this action Konigsberg moves another two miles upstream.

Two British destroyers HMS Scorpion (Captain Andrew B Cunningham) and HMS Wolverine (Captain Osmond J Prentice who will be killed on 28 April 1915 in the Dardanelles) attack a Turkish yacht, supposedly acting as a minelayer in Smyrna harbor.  She is set afire by her own crew and blows up.

A convoy of 36 ships sets out from Albany on the southwest tip of Australia transporting the New Zealand and Australian Expeditionary Forces. This 8-mile long convoy is protected by the heavy cruiser HMS Minotaur (Captain E B Kiddle) and HMAS Melbourne (Captain Mortimer Silver) and HMAS Sydney a matching pair of light cruisers and the Japanese battle cruiser Ibuki. From Freemantle on the southwest coast of Australia two more transports join the convoy, which heads for Colombo at a speed of 9½ knots.

The British lines are pierced at Neuve Chapelle, which the Germans reoccupy. By the light of a blazing fire at a windmill the Germans again attack Wytschaete Ridge.  For more than an hour they are held at bay but around 02:00 they rush again pressing home the attack with bayonets.  Sheer weight of numbers forces the London Scottish back over the road and the ridge is captured by the German forces.  The London Scottish retire and concentrate at Kemmel.

  •  Lieutenant John Charles Lancelot Farquharson (London Scottish) is killed at age 33. His brother will die of wounds in March 1918 commanding the 2nd Royal Marines Battalion.
  • Lance Corporal James Roy Hamilton (London Scottish) is killed at age 25. He is the son of James Hamilton JP.
  • Brothers and Privates Ashford and Leslie Francis Walford are killed together while serving in the London Scottish. Ashford dies at age 24 while Leslie is 23.
  • Private James Ross (London Scottish) is killed in action at age 34. He earned 5 caps as a Scottish Rugby International.
  • Private Albert Brian Colin Sarll (London Scottish) is killed at age 23. He is a schoolmaster at Gopsall Street LCC School and a member of Roehampton and Mitcham Football and Cricket Clubs.

A company of the Irish Guards is attacked by German Artillery where it is linked with the French on the fringe of Zillebeke Wood. In the course of the fighting every man, whether officer, orderly, batman or cook, who is able to fight, takes up a rifle and helps hold the line. Of the more than 400 men in the battalion more than 130 are killed, 88 of them when their trench is blown in by shell fire.

  • Captain ‘The Honorable’ Andrew Edward Somerset Mulholland(Irish Guards) is killed in this action at age 32. He is the son of the 2nd Baron Dunleath JP High Sheriff 1884 MP and the son-in-law of 5th Earl of Strafford and his only daughter will be born in March 1915.
  • Second Lieutenant Graham Macdowall Maitland (Irish Guards) is a rower who won the Silver Goblets at Henley Royal Regatta in 1900. He rowed for Cambridge in the Boat Race in 1901. He is killed at age 35. His brother was killed during the relief of Ladysmith in February 1900.

During the night near Le Gheer, Belgium, when his officer, the platoon sergeant and a number of men have been struck down, Drummer Spencer John Bent (East Lancashire Regiment) takes command of the platoon and succeeds in holding the position.  For his actions this day and other days prior and later he will be awarded the Victoria Cross.

At Tsing-tau the Bismarck forts are silenced. HMS Triumph assists the Japanese bombardment.

The British ambassador leaves Constantinople.

  • Major John Frederick Loder-Symonds (commanding 1st South Staffordshire Regiment) dies of wounds received nine days prior at age 40. He is the son of Frederick Cleave Loder-Symonds JP and the first of four brothers who will be killed in the Great War. He is the son-in-law of ‘Sir’ William Vavasour the 3rd
  • Major (Brevet Lieutenant Colonel) Robert Page (Lancashire Fusiliers attached #7 General Base Depot) dies on service in France at age 57. He is the son of the Reverend and Mrs. J Page.
  • Major (Brigade Major 3rd Division Royal Artillery) Francis Julian Audley Mackworth(Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 38. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Arthur William Mackworth, the 6th Baronet who had another son killed at Ladysmith 6 January 1900 in the South Africa War while another will die on service in November 1917.
  • Major ‘the Honorable’ Arthur Orlando Wolstan Cecil Weld-ForesterMVO (commanding 1st Grenadier Guards) dies of wounds at King Edward VII Hospital received 29 October at age 37. He is the son of the 5th Baron Forester, grandson of ‘Sir’ Willoughby Wolstan Dixie 8th Baronet and served at the Aide de Camp to Lord Hardinge Viceroy of India from 1910 to 1912.
  • Major Charles Napier North (Royal Engineers) is killed by a sniper at age 41. His great grandfather Captain Roger North fought in the Peninsula and died after his retirement from of the effects of wounds he received in that campaign. His daughter will be born next March.
  • Captain Hugh Seymour Blane (Lancers) dies of wounds received the previous day at age 29. He is the nephew of the 3rd Baronet Blane and brother of the 4th His brother will be killed at Jutland as a Royal Naval Commander on HMS Queen Mary.
  • Captain Gerard Gloag Sadler(Dragoon Guards) dies of wounds received the previous day at age 33. He is the son of the late ‘Sir’ Samuel Sadler Kt and served in the South African War.
  • Captain Hugh Stafford Northcote Wright (Gurkha Rifles) is killed at age 37. He is the son of Frederick Wright, Inspector General of Police in Berar and god son and name sake of the 1st Lord Iddlesleigh to whom he was related. He served in the South African War and is a tennis player who won the Open Singles Championship at Salisbury Lawn Tennis Club in 1909.
  • Captain Charles Paget O’Brien Butler (Royal Army Medical Corps) dies of wounds at age 33 while attempting to aid wounded. His two brothers are also killed in the service of King and Country the first in South Africa in January 1902 and the other in June 1917.
  • Captain Leo de Orellana Tollemache (Lincolnshire Regiment) is killed at age 34. He is the son of the Reverend Ralph William Lyonel Tollmache-Tollemache JP Vicar of South Witham Lincolnshire who will lose another son in February 1917.
  • Captain Robert Giffard(Royal Field Artillery and ADC General Lomax) dies of wounds received the previous day by a shell burst at Divisional Headquarters at age 30.  He has two brothers who will be killed during the Great War and is a member of the Foresters Cricket Club.
  • Lieutenant William Beresford Gosset (Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 20. He is the son of the Honorable Beresford Smyly Gosset.
  • Lieutenant Anthony Theodore Clephane Wickham(Connaught Rangers) is killed in action at age 27. He is the son of the Reverend James Douglas Clephane Wickham.
  • Lieutenant Thomas Edward Lawson-Smith(Hussars) is killed at age 25 ten days after his younger brother has been killed.
  • Lieutenant William Hugh Holbech (Scots Guards) is killed at age 32. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ John Walrond 1st
  • Lieutenant Jacob Edward Pleydell-Bouverie (King’s Royal Rifle Corps) dies of wounds received the previous day at age 27. He is the son of the ‘Honorable’ Duncombe Pleydell-Bouverie, the grandson of the 4th Earl of Radnor and son-in-law of ‘Sir’ Edward Hulse 5th
  • Lieutenant Arthur Gilliat Smith (Royal Engineers) is killed at age 26. He is related to ‘Sir’ Edmund Bainbridge KCB.
  • Lieutenant Maurice Aden Ley (East Kent Regiment attached Lincolnshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. His brother will be killed in March 1918 and they are sons of ‘Sir’ Francis Ley the 1st
  • Second Lieutenant Eric Barnes(Lincolnshire Regiment) is killed in at age 20.  His brother will be killed in October 1917.
  • Drummer Frederick Whittingham (West Surrey Regiment) dies of wounds at age 23. His brother will be killed in July 1916.
  • Private William Murray (Hussars) is killed at age 26. He is the champion boxer of the 13th

Photos from wikipedia.org

 

Saturday 31 October 1914 – We Lost 1,178

Victoria Cross

Victoria Cross

The outcome of the Battle of Ypres now hinges around the village of Gheluvelt.  Lying on a forward spur of the low ridge that covers the town of Ypres, Gheluvelt is the last point retained in British hands from which the enemy’s line can be dominated.  By noon the West Surrey, the Royal Scots Fusiliers, the Welsh and the King’s Royal Rifles have been overwhelmed, while on the right the South Wales Borderers have been rolled back.  Gheluvelt has been lost and a serious gap has been made in the British line. So serious is the situation that unless the gap can be closed, a breakthrough can not be avoided. Indeed orders have already been prepared for artillery to move back in preparation for a general retreat. At 13:00 hours the 2nd Worcestershire Regiment receives an order from Brigadier General Charles Fitzclarence VC to attack and retake Gheluvelt.  Captain A. F. Thorne of the Grenadier Guards is to act as a guide.  From Polygon Wood, the chateau which dominates the village can not be seen but the nearby church tower rising amidst the smoke is visible. All around are wounded and stragglers coming to the rear and batteries can be seen limbering up and moving back. The Worcestershires alone are moving towards the enemy. The ridge is littered with dead and wounded, and along the crest, German shells are falling fast. Major E B Hankey decides that the only way to cross this dangerous area is at the double.  As the leading men reach the ridge, they come in view of the German guns whose high explosive shells are quickly directed on the charging soldiers. Over 100 of the Battalion are killed or wounded but the rest push on and, increasing their speed as they come to the downward slope in sight of Gheluvelt, make the final charge through hedges and on to the Chateau grounds.  Here they meet the remnants of the South Wales Borderers who have made a heroic stand. The meeting is unexpected as the Worcestershires believe no British soldiers are left on the grounds.  The 2nd Worcestershires have gone into this action with about 370 men of whom 187 are killed or wounded.  Gheluvelt is saved and the line restored.  It is rare that the action of one unit can exert such a profound influence as did this famous counter attack.

The town of Messines is held by British infantry with fighting in the streets and the front running north of town roughly parallel to and about 100 yards east of the road and is held by the 4th and 6th Dragoon Guards forming the right of the 4th Cavalry Brigade which holds the line towards Wytschaete. The 57th Wilde’s Rifles has been sent in to assist the Cavalry yesterday but suffers heavy casualties and is forced to withdraw.  The London Scottish is sent in today to fill the dangerous gap and help the Carabiniers to hold the right center of the line.   When the 1st Battalion comes under heavy fire and is pinned down upon reaching the ridge they dig in. They become the 1st Territorial Battalion to come under fire in the Great War. Fierce exchanges of fire continue all day. At about 21:00 the Germans attempt their first attack on the ridge. The attack is beaten off and the bombardment of the ridge by the Germans begins again and continues until after midnight.

Britain, France and Russia declare war on Turkey.

The final bombardment of Tsing-tau begins as the Japanese commence shelling of the fort and the city.

Captain Sydney Drury-Lowe discovers Konigsberg hiding at Salale (which had been prominently ringed in pencil on the freighter Prasident’s charts) up the Rufiji Delta. Dawn is breaking as HMS Chatham anchors off the delta. An armed raiding party goes ashore in Chatham’s steam cutter.  They learn from the natives of Kiomboni village that that the German lookouts have just left to go back to their base for breakfast. The village headman and two other men are taken back to the cutter for questioning. All three confirm that the Konigsberg, the collier Somali and three small vessels are anchored upriver from the Sima Uranga mouth of the Rufiji at Salala, some nine miles inland. The cooperative local headman shows Drury-Lowe the deep-water channels that lead up river from the Kiomboni and Simba Uganda entrances. And as the Chatham follows the coastline northward, her lookouts soon spot Konigsberg’s mastheads standing above the tree line. Chatham fires a few shells in the general direction, but all fall short.  Drury-Lowe signals HMS Weymouth and HMS Dartmouth to leave their patrol areas and join him of the Rufiji River.  While waiting for them, he shells the German wireless station at Mafia Island hoping to disrupt Konigsberg’s communications.

The steamship Karmala carrying Major General Arthur Edward Aitken’s force docks at Mombasa. Aitken and his staff meet with military authorities ashore to discuss the impending attack on Tanga in German East Africa. Lieutenant Colonel Bertram Robert Graham (Queen Victoria’s Corps of Guides attached and commander of the 3rd King’s Africa Rifles), offers Aitken some of his British led askaris who are familiar with the area, but Aitken declines the assistance. Additionally, in spite of his ship having engine trouble, the Captain of the battleship HMS Goliath offers to escort the invasion force to Tanga and lend fire support. Again Aitken refuses the offer. A staff officer, Major Frederick Keen tries to persuade Aitken to put his troops ashore for a few days after their miserable voyage and long confinement aboard ship, he is told that he is making an unnecessary fuss. The list of errors in judgment by Aitken is by now very long. Finally, failure to allow his troops time to recondition is probably Aitken’s worst mistake.  His plan for the attack on Tanga is simple, but he neglects the details.  He ignores local advice and fails to learn all that he can about his enemy and about the terrain where he proposes to land. He also neglects security. Secrecy is almost nonexistent.  Crates in Bombay have been marked “Indian Expeditionary Force ‘B’, Mombasa, East Africa.”  Newspapers in British East Africa even write of the intended attack.

The cruiser HMS Hermes (Captain Charles Laverock Lambe) is torpedoed and sunk by U27 in the Straits of Dover while engaged in transporting aircraft to France.  The first torpedo strikes from a range of about 300 yards and as she is sinking by the stern a second torpedo hits and she quickly sinks.  There are twenty-two fatalities while four hundred survivors are picked up.

HMS Otranto rejoins Cradock’s squadron without having been able to obtain any information. HMS Glasgow signals from Coronel that German supply ships have been frequently sailing in and out of that port and that she has intercepted several transmissions between SMS Leipzig and one of her colliers.  Cradock orders HMS Glasgow to leave Coronel immediately and meet him the next day fifty miles west of Arauco Bay.

The 129th Baluchis come under heavy fire at Hollebeke. With the British officer in charge of his detachment having been wounded and another machine gun put out of action by a shell, Sepoy Khudadad Kahn though wounded himself remains working his gun until all other five men of his detachment have been killed. Naik Sair Amir shows conspicuous gallantry in the same action as he continues to fire his machine as the other guns are put out of action. Sepoy Khan will be awarded the Victoria Cross while Naik Amir will be rewarded with the Indian Order of Merit for their actions today.

Major General Samuel H Lomax (1st Division) is mortally wounded (he will die next April) and Major General Charles C Monro (2nd Division) is badly stunned when a German shell strikes as they are meeting close to the front at Hooge Chateau shortly after midday.

 Today’s casualties include:

  •  The winningest jockey in Ireland in 1907
  • The lightweight boxing champion of India
  • A member of the Marylebone Cricket Club
  • A football player for Linfield Swifts and South End Rangers
  • A Show Horse Jumper
  • An Assistant Boy Scout Master
  • The son of a family that will lose four more sons in the Great War
  • The son of multiple families that will lose three sons between this war and the South African War
  • Multiple examples of a man who will have a brother killed in the war
  • A man whose brother-in-law will be killed
  • A man whose brother was killed in the South African War
  • Multiple men whose children will be born after their death
  • Multiple sons of clergy
  • Multiple grandsons of clergy
  • Multiple Justices of the Peace
  • Multiple sons of Justices of the Peace
  • The son-in-law of a Justice of the Peace
  • The nephew of a Justice of the Peace
  • The son of a General
  • The stepson of a General
  • Multiple grandsons of Generals
  • The nephew of a General
  • The son of an Admiral
  • The Grandson of an Admiral
  • The son of a Victoria Cross winner
  • The half brother of a Member of Parliament
  • A member of the first class of Military Cross winners
  • Multiple battalion commanders
  • The son of the 4th Earl of Erne and father of the 5th Earl who will be killed in the next war
  • The son of the 6th Baron MacDonald of Armadale and the father of the 7th Baron
  • The son of the 1st Baron St Levan
  • The son of a Countess of the Holy Roman Empire
  • The son-in-law of the Duke of Westminster
  • The grandson of the 4th Marquess Townsend
  • The great grandson of the 2nd Earl of Ducie
  • The great grandson of the 17th Baron Dunboyne
  • A cousin of a Baronet

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

Captain Charles Paget O’Brien-Butler (Royal Army Medical Corps attached Irish Lancers) is killed attempting to reach wounded comrades at age 33. He is an outstanding amateur jockey who while riding for His Majesty the late King Edward VII was the winningest rider in Ireland in 1907 and he finished fifth in the Grand National in 1913. His brother-in-law will be killed in less than two months and his brother will be killed in June 1917 while another brother an Irish International Rugby player died of dysentery during the South African War. Finally he is the great grandson of Edmund Butler the 17th Baron Dunboyne.

  •  Colonel Frederick Walter KerrDSO (Gordon Highlanders, staff 1st Divisional Headquarters) is killed at age 47 when the Divisional Headquarters in Hooge Chateau is hit by shellfire. He is the son of Admiral Lord Frederic Kerr and the grandson of General ‘Sir’ Peregrine Maitland GCB. He served in Chitral 1895, Tirah 1897-8 and the South African War.
  • Lieutenant Colonel John Alexander Browning (commanding 2nd Dragoon Guards) is killed at Messines at age 36.
  • Lieutenant Colonel Charles Bernard Morland (commanding 2nd Welsh Regiment) dies of wounds at age 47. He is a veteran of the South African War.
  • Lieutenant Colonel Walter Edwin Venour(Commanding 58th Vaughan’s Rifles, Indian Army) is killed by a sniper’s bullet to the head at age 50. He is the son of Lieutenant General Edwin Venour and he has previously seen action in Chin-Luchai 1889-90, Miranzai 1891 and the North West Frontier of India 1897-8 being wounded at Tirah.
  • Major (Temporary Lieutenant Colonel) Arthur Jex Blake Percival DSO (Northumberland Fusiliers and General Staff) is killed at age 43. He served in the Nile 1898 and the South African War and is the son of the Bishop of Hereford.
  • Major (Brevet Lieutenant Colonel) Henry William CrichtonDSO MVO (Royal Horse Guards) is killed at Wytschaete at age 42.  He is the Viscount Crichton and son of the 4th Earl of Erne. He is the son-in-law of the 1st Duke of Westminster and his widow will become Lady Mary Stanley and his son the 5th Earl of Erne will be killed in the Second World War. His brother-in-law was killed yesterday.
  • Major George Paley (Rifle Brigade) is killed at age 42. He is the grandson of Canon Nepean Chaplain in Ordinary to her late Majesty Queen Victoria and he served in Soudan 1898 and in the South African War.
  • Major Neil MacPherson(2nd in command 2nd Gurkha Rifles) is killed at age 45. He is the son of the late General ‘Sir’ Herbert Taylor MacPherson VC KCB.  He served in the Isazai Expedition in 1892, the NorthWest Frontier of India, Samana and Tirah in 1897-8, the South African Campaign of 1900-02 and the Abor Expedition 1911-12. He is the grandson of Lieutenant General Eckford CB.
  • Major Robert MacGregor Stewart Gardner(Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at age 44 at Gheluvelt.  He is a South African War veteran, a nephew of General ‘Sir’ Robert Stewart GCB and his daughter will be born in February 1915.
  • Major Edward Egerton Barwell (Wilde’s Rifles) is killed at age 42. He is the son of General Charles Arthur Barwell CB. He served in Waziristan 1894-5, the Northwest Frontier 1897-8 and China in 1900.
  • Major Francis Maxwell Chenevix Trench (Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 36. His brother was killed in the South African War in April 1902 and they are grandsons of the Most Reverend and Right Honorable Richard Chenevix Trench.
  • Major Walter Gabriel Home(Dragoon Guards) dies of wounds at age 41.  He is the son of the late Reverend Robert Home and is a South African War veteran.
  • Captain and Adjutant William McMillan Black (Vaughan’s Rifles) is killed at age 31. He is the son of the Reverend William McMillan Black.
  • Captain William Joseph Wickham(Scots Guards) is killed at age 39. He is the son of Captain Henry Lampugh and ‘the Honorable’ Mrs Teresa Mary Wickham Countess of the Holy Roman Empire and the eldest daughter and co-heiress of the 11th Lord Arundell. His brother will die of wounds next January.
  • Captain John Edmund Simpson(King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry) is killed at age 41.  He is the son of the late Reverend John Curwen Simpson.
  • Captain Leslie Sedgwick Whitchurch (Indian Army Cavalry attached Dragoon Guards) is killed at age 34. He is the son the Reverend Walter Beaumont Gurney Whitchurch Rector of Spixworth Norfolk. He served on the North West Frontier 1902.
  • Captain John Spottiswoode (King’s Royal Rifle Corps) is killed at age 40. He is the grandson of the Reverend ‘Sir’ St Vincent Love Hammick and nephew of William Spottiswood (former President of the Royal Society, the London Mathmatical Society and the British Association). He is the son-in-law of Dr. Christian David Gisnburg JP and his second son will be born next year.
  • Captain Mervyn Crawshay (Dragoon Guards) a Show Horse Jumper is killed. He has represented the military in tournaments in America in 1913.
  • Captain Albert Alexander Stephen DSO (Scots Guards) is killed at age 35. His brother was killed last month and they are grandsons of Admiral ‘Sir’ Cornwallis Ricketts 2nd
  • Captain Geoffrey Wilmot Herringham (Dragoons) is killed at Messines at age 31. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Wilmot Herringham.
  • Captain and Adjutant Walter Hughes Ferrar (Welsh Regiment) is killed at Gheluvelt at age 38. He is a veteran of the South African War and son of A M Ferrar DL.
  • Captain Frederick William Hunt (Lancers Indian Army) is killed at age 33. He is the son of the Reverend William Cornish Hunt of Odell Rectory Bedfordshire.
  • Captain Edward Hugh Bagot Stack (Gurkha Rifles) is killed atage 29. He is the great nephew of the late Right Reverend Charles Maurice Stack Bishop of Cloghern Clones Ireland.
  • Captain Graham Percival Shedden (Royal Garrison Artillery) dies of wounds at age 28. He is the son of George Shedden JP.
  • Captain Richard Vincent Barker (Welsh Fusiliers) is killed when shot in the chest. He is a South African War veteran and son of the Reverend Frederick Barker Rector of Wimborne St Giles.
  • Captain Hugh Clervaux Chaytor (Light Cavalry Indian Army attachded Hussars) is killed at Messines at age 30. He is the cousin of ‘Sir’ Edmund Chaytor Baronet.
  • Lieutenant Donald Godrid Campbell Thomson (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 21. He is the nephew of Captain G C Karran JP and has a brother who will be killed in October 1917.
  • Lieutenant Edmund Elgood Punchard(Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed by a shot to the head at age 24. He is the son of the late Reverend Elgood George Punchard, Honorary Canon of Ely, DD and Vicar of Ely St Mary’s. His brother will be killed in March 1917.
  • Lieutenant Arthur Knight Nicholson (Hussars) is killed by a sniper at age 21. He is the only son of Herbert Nicholson JP.
  • Lieutenant ‘the Honorable’ Godfrey Evan Hugh Bosville MacDonald JP (Scots Guards) dies of wounds at age 35. He is the son of the 6th Baron MacDonald of Armadale Castle who has lost one son at Krugersdorp South Africa in April 1901 and another son will be killed in October 1918. His son will become the 7th
  • Lieutenant Spencer Julian Wilfred Railston (Lancers, Indian Army attached Dragoon Guards) the one time lightweight boxing champion of India is killed at age 25. He dies attempting to bring in a wounded peasant woman on the field of fire. He is the grandson of the Reverend C E Oakley and great grandson of the 2nd Earl of Ducie.
  • Lieutenant Alan Randall Aufrere Leggett(North Staffordshire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 21.  He is the first of three sons of Colonel Leggett to be killed in the Great War.  His older brothers will be killed on different days in July 1916.  The memory of the three sons is kept alive in the Chancel’s Screen and Memorial Cross in St Martin’s Church, Cheriton.
  • Lieutenant Langton Sacheverell Coke(Irish Guards) is killed at age 36.  He is the son of the late Colonel W L Coke JP DL.
  • Lieutenant Philip Walter Rudolph Doll(Liverpool Regiment) is killed at age 24.  He is the son of Charles FitzRoy Doll JP (London and Hertford) and was the winner of Lord Robert’s Gold Cup at Aldershot in 1914 with his guns. He was also a member of the MCC since 1911.
  • Lieutenant George Archer-Shee(South Staffordshire Regiment) is killed at age 19 as a result of an order to withdraw not reaching his platoon. As a 13-year old cadet at Royal Navy College at Osborne he was accused of stealing a five shilling postal note from the locker of a fellow cadet in 1908. The college asserted that he signed his name to a postal order and cashed it and despite the young boy’s claims of innocence he was expelled. A trial in 1910 vindicated him completely. He is the half-brother of Major Martin Archer-Shee MP.
  • Lieutenant Algernon Lindsay Eric Smith (Life Guards) is killed at age 22. He is among the 1st group of officers to be awarded the Military Cross.
  • Lieutenant and Quartermaster ‘the Honorable’ Edmund WilkinsonDCM (North Lancashire Regiment) is killed at age 43. His daughter will be born next January and he was a South African War veteran.
  • Second Lieutenant Reginald William Fletcher(Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 22. He rowed with the Oxford University VIII in 1914. His brother will be killed in March 1915.
  • Second Lieutenant ‘the Honorable’ Piers Stewart St Aubyn JP(King’s Royal Rifle Corps) dies of wounds at age 43. He is the son of the 1st Baron and Lady St Levan and grandson of 4th Marquess Townsend and a veteran of the South African War. His brother will be killed in December 1915 serving as a King’s Messenger when SS Persia is sunk.
  • Second Lieutenant Gerald Gordon Clement Elrington (East Yorkshire Regiment) is killed at Festubert at age 20. He is the stepson of General Miles.
  • Second Lieutenant Arnold Septimus Jarvis (Northamptonshire Regiment) is killed at age 19. He is the first of five brothers who will be killed in the war.
  • Sergeant Edward Charters White (Black Watch) is killed at age 32. He is the Assistant Scout Master of the Baden Powell Scouts at Fort William Calcutta.
  • Lance Corporal Thomas Alfred Tompkins (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 27. His brother Wesley will also lose his life in the Great War.
  • Private Leslie Houston (Inniskilling Fusiliers) dies of wounds. He played football for the Linfield Swifts and South-End Rangers.
  • Private Robert Clive Forrest (London Scottish) is killed at age 18. He is the only son of Robert Forrest JP DL.
  • Gunner Frederick Blackwell (Royal Garrison Artillery) is killed at age 24. His brother will be killed next August.
  • Private Thomas Richard Dawes (Dragoon Guards) is killed the day after his brother met the same fate.
  • Private Albert Charles Love (Sussex Regiment) is killed at age 23. His brother will be killed in May 1917.
  • Private Charles Philip Libretto (West Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 18. His brother will be killed in September 1917.
  • Private William Perrin (West Surrey Regiment) is killed. His brother will be killed in June 1917.
  • Private W Curtis (West Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 30. His brother will be killed next January.
  • Private Basil Thomas Freffry (West Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 21. His brother will be killed in August 1917.
  • Henry William and Joseph Batchelor are killed together serving as privates in the Dragoon Guards. Henry is killed at age 28, while Joseph is one year older.
  • Private William Ayres (Northamptonshire Regiment) is killed at age 28. He has two brothers who will be killed over the next two years.

Thursday 29 October 1914 – We Lost 796

Victoria Cross

Victoria Cross

At 05:30 the Germans attack in the Ypres sector in an attempt to break through to the Channel Ports, and sever the lines of communication of the British Expeditionary Forces.  British artillery is restricted because of shell shortages to nine rounds per gun per day and is unable to take advantage of prior knowledge of the attack plans.  The 1st Coldstream Guards at Gheluvelt are attacked along a front of 800 yards by six German battalions and by the end of the day the 1st Guards Brigade suffers 1,100 casualties and is reduced in strength to 275 men.  The 1st Coldstream Guards lose all 11 Combatant Officers and is reduced to a party of 60 other ranks under the Quartermaster.  The 2nd and 3rd Coldstream Guards successfully defend Zonnebeke some three miles to the north.  The Germans force their way in between two companies of the 1st Middlesex Regiment so that one company finds itself with the enemy not only in the front but also directly in the rear within 50 feet. About 40 Germans who have penetrated to a communication trench are all killed or taken prisoner by the battalion’s reserve company.  Eventually with the help of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders the trenches are cleared of the enemy.

Lieutenant James Anson Otho Brooke (Gordon Highlanders) will be awarded the Victoria Cross for conspicuous bravery and great ability near Gheluvelt in leading two attacks on the German trenches under heavy rifle and machine gun fire regaining a lost trench at a very critical moment.  His efforts prevented the enemy from breaking through the British line at a time when a general counter attack could not be organized.  Having regained the lost trench, he goes back to bring up support and while doing so is killed. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Harry Vesey Brooke JP DL, grandson of ‘Sir’ Arthur Brooke MP 2nd Baronet and great grandson of General ‘Sir’ George Anson GCB and had been awarded the Sword of Honor at Sandhurst and dies at age 30.  He has two brothers who will die during the Great War both dying at home, the first in 1916 the second in 1917. Their brother-in-law will be killed on Christmas Day this year.

Lieutenant Arthur Martin Leake (Royal Army Medical Corps) will be awarded his second Victoria Cross for most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty beginning on this day through 8 November near Zonnebeke in rescuing while exposed to constant fire a large number of the wounded who are lying close to the enemy trenches. He is one of only three men ever to be awarded the Victoria Cross twice.

Second Lieutenant James Leach and Sergeant John Hogan (Manchester Regiment) will each be awarded the Victoria Cross for conspicuous bravery near Festubert when after their trench has been taken by Germans and after two attempts at recapture fails they voluntarily decide in the afternoon of this day to recover the trench themselves, and, working from traverse to traverse at close quarters with great bravery, they gradually succeed in regaining possession, killing eight of the enemy, wounding two and taking sixteen prisoners.

The 2nd/8th Gurkha Rifles arrive at the Western Front and go into the trenches near Festubert.

Beduin tribesmen raid the Egyptian frontier.

Lord Fisher is appointed First Sea Lord.

Admiral Cradock’s squadron reaches Vallenar Roads, just south of Chiloe Island. He sends HMS Glasgow ahead to see if there are any messages for him with the British consulate in Coronel.  He also dispatches HMS Otranto to Puerto Montt to try to gather information as to the whereabouts of any German warships.

The hospital ship HMHS Rohilla departs Leith for Dunkirk to board wounded.

Today’s losses include:

  • Victoria Cross winner
  • Son of the 4th Duke of Wellington and Grandson of the 1st Duke (The Iron Duke)
  • Battalion commander
  • A man whose father died on service in the South African War of typhoid fever
  • Sons of Baronets
  • Son-in-law of a Baronet
  • Grandson of a Baronet
  • Grandson of a Member of Parliament
  • Nephew of a Member of Parliament
  • Families that will lose two and three sons
  • Sons of Generals
  • Grandson of a General
  • Great grandson of a General
  • Great nephew of a General
  • Son of an Admiral
  • Sons of Justices of the Peace
  • Son-in-law of a Justice of the Peace
  • Children born after their father’s death
  • Brother-in-law killed
  • A man whose son will be killed in World War II
  • A man whose nephew will be killed in World War II
  • A man whose nephew will be later in the Great War
  • Sons of clergy
  • Son-in-law of clergy
  • A grandson of a member of the clergy
  • An uncle and nephew killed together
  • A Somerset cricket batsman
  • Grandson son of writer to the Signet
  • Son of the 1st Baron Hamilton of Dalzel
  • Son of the Marquis de la Pasture
  • Son and heir to the 3rd Baron Penrhyn
  • Son-in-law of the 2nd Earl of Darley
  • Son of the 7th Viscount Falmouth
  • Son-in-law of the 4th Earl of Leitrim
  • Nephew of the Earl of Kintore

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

 Captain ‘Lord’ Richard Wellesley (Grenadier Guards) the son of the 4th Duke of Wellington and the son-in-law of ‘Sir’ Maurice Fitzgerald Baronet and the 20th Knight of Kerry is killed in action at age 35. His daughter will be born on 8 January 1915. He is the grandson of the ‘Iron Duke’ the original Duke of Wellington

  •  Lieutenant Colonel Henry Lawrence Anderson(Bhopal Infantry) dies of wounds at age 47.  He is the son of Major General Robert Patrick Anderson.
  • Major Wilfred Beckett Walker(Yorkshire Regiment) is killed at age 38. He is a veteran of the South African War and his first brother was killed in the first few days of the Great War while his second brother will die of wounds two days after the Armistice in 1918.  They are grandsons of ‘Sir’ James Walker Baronet.
  • Major ‘the Honorable’ Leslie D’Henin Hamilton MVO(Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 40. He is the son of the 1st Baron Hamilton of Dalzell father of the 3rd Baron and he served in the South African War.
  • Major Humphrey St Leger Stucley(Grenadier Guards) dies of injuries at age 37. He is the son of the late ‘Sir’ George Stucley, 1st Baronet and had served in Egypt 1898 and in the South Africa War. His son will be killed in World War II.
  • Captain Charles Edward Mary de la Pasture (Scots Guards) is killed at age 35. He is the eldest son of the Marquis de la Pasture who will die what many will say is from shock and a broken heart within three months. Captain de la Pasture served in the South African War and from 1907-10 was Aide de Campe to General ‘Sir’ Frederick Forestier Walker at Gibraltar.
  • Captain Gordon Hargreaves Brown(Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 34.  He is the son and heir of the late ‘Sir’ Alexander Brown, the 1st Baronet and he had served in the South African War. His third child will be born next February and his only son Captain ‘Sir’ John Hargreaves Pigott-Brown who will become the 2nd Baronet will be killed in North Africa in December 1942.
  • Captain Colin Frederick Fitzroy Campbell(Scots Guards) is killed at age 34. He is the son of Major General F Lorn Campbell and son-in-law of Lady May Stewart.
  • Captain Robert Forbes Stanley Stanley-CreekDSO (West Surrey Regiment) is killed. His widow is the daughter of ‘Sir’ David Masson.
  • Captain Arthur George McCausland Burn (East Surrey Regiment attached Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at Ypres at age 31. His great grandfather Lieutenant Colonel William Burn successfully held Delhi against Holkar.
  • Captain Edgar W Walker(East Yorkshire Regiment) is killed at age 39.  He is the son of Rear Admiral Charles Walker and his brother-in-law will be killed next May.
  • Captain Geoffrey Malcolm Bentley(Northamptonshire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 31. His brother was killed seventeen days earlier. They are sons of Lieutenant Colonel Alfred Wilson Bentley JP.
  • Captain Guy Francis Headlam Keenlyside(Royal West Kent Regiment) dies of wounds received three days earlier at age 34. His second son will be born in May 1915 and his brother will be killed in July 1915.
  • Captain Robert John Blatchford Oldrey(Dragoon Guards) is killed at age 31. His brother will die on active service in February 1919.
  • Captain Percy Lionel Moubray (Black Watch) is killed at age 42. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ Robert Moubray Kt and served in the South African War.
  • Captain John Kearsley Dawson-Scott (Royal Engineers) is killed at age 31. He is the son of General R N Dawson-Scott.
  • Lieutenant Morys Wynne-Jones(Royal Engineers) is killed at age 27. He is the son of the Reverend John William Wynne-Jones Vicar of Carnarvon and his wife the Honorable Jessie F Wynne-Jones and the grandson of Lord Aberdare.
  • Lieutenant and Adjutant John Henry Loftus Reade (Manchester Regiment) is killed at age 33. He is a veteran of the South African War and the grandson of the Right Reverend Loftus George Reade.
  • Lieutenant Charles Keith Latta (Gordon Highlanders) is killed at age 24. He is the grandson of John Jopp Writer to the Signer.
  • Lieutenant Graham Eardley Dunsterville (Devonshire Regiment) is killed when he is shot in the head at Festubert at age 30 attepting to bring in a wounded man who was crying out. He is the son-in-law of F Hastings Coldney JP and his son will be born on 29 December.
  • Lieutenant James Raymond McClintock Lonsdale (Hussars) dies of wounds received 13 October at age 20. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ James Mathew Stronge 2nd Baronet and nephew of ‘Sir’ John B Lonsdale Baronet MP.
  • Lieutenant Ralph Escott Hancock DSO (Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 26 six days after performing the acts that will win him the DSO. He is the son-in-law of the Reverend P P Broadmead and a Somerset County cricket batsman.
  • Lieutenant Ian Hay Steuart Clarke(Wilde’s Rifles) is killed at age 25. He is the son of the late Hastings A Clarke DL JP.
  • Lieutenant the ‘Honorable’ Alan George Sholto Douglas-Pennant (Grenadier Guards)age 24 the son and heir of the 3rd Baron Penrhyn is killed. His uncle Lieutenant ‘the Honorable’ Charles Douglas-Pennant JP (Coldstream Guards) is killed in the same action. He served in the South Africa War and is a son of the 2nd Baron Penrhyn who will lose another son the following year.  He is also the son-in-law of the 2nd Earl Darley.
  • Lieutenant Geoffrey Arthur Campbell (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 29. He is the son of ‘the Honorable’ Mrs. George Campbell.
  • Lieutenant Granville Keith Falconer Smith (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 28. He is the son of the late Colonel Granville and Lady Blanche Smith. He is also the nephew of the Earl of Kintore and son-in-law of the 4th Earl of Leitrim.
  • Lieutenant ‘Sir’ Gilchrist Nevill Ogilvy (Scots Guards) 11th Baronet is killed at age 22. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ Reginald H A Ogilvy.
  • Second Lieutenant ‘the Honorable’ Vere Douglas Boscawen(Coldstream Guards) is also killed at age 24. He is the son of Major General Evelyn Edward Thomas Boscawen, the 7th Viscount Falmouth KCVO CB and his older brother will die of wounds in 1918. In 1909 he was with the Eton XI Cricket Club against Harrow. They will have a nephew, who is not yet born, killed in action with the Coldstream Guards in May 1940.
  • Second Lieutenant Herbert Knollys Foster(Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at Gheluvelt at age 19. He is the son of the Reverend Canon Herbert Charles Foster St Thomas’s Vicarage Groombridge.
  • Second Lieutenant Patrick Edward Adam Blair (Black Watch) is killed at age 21. He is the son of Lieutenant Colonel A S Blair CMG (Royal Scots) writer to the Signet.
  • Second Lieutenant John William Harford Nicholl (Welsh Regiment) is killed at age 22. He is the great nephew of Major General C R H Nicholl.
  • Second Lieutenant Frederick McMahon Hardman (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 24. His father Captain John Wreford Julian Hardman died of typhoid fever in May 1900 during the South African War at age 37. He is the grandson of General ‘Sir’ Thomas W McMahon Baronet CB whose son (and uncle of Lieutenant Hardman) Brigadier General Norman Reginald McMahon will be killed in the less than two weeks.
  • CQMS Ernest John Thompson (Grenadier Guards) is killed a day after his brother was killed with the 21st
  • Private Albert Shipp(Grenadier Guards) is killed at age 22.  His brother will be killed in March 1915.
  • Private Fred (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 23. He has two brothers who will be killed in the Great War.
  • Private William Georgeson (Scots Guards) is killed. His brother will be killed in October 1917.
  • Private Henry Etherington (West Surrey Regiment) is killed at age 23. His brother will be killed in less than two weeks serving in the Royal Fusiliers.
  • Private Henry Long (Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at age 35. His brothers George and Edward will also lose their lives in the Great War.
  • Private Fred Castle (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 23. His two brothers will also die in service including one in the Second World War.

photo from wikipedia.org

Friday 23 October 1914 – We Lost 497

 

Charles Lindsay Claude Bowes-Lyon

Charles Lindsay Claude Bowes-Lyon

The first Indian Army units enter the line south of Ypres.

Drummer William Kenny (Gordon Highlanders) will be awarded the Victoria Cross for conspicuous bravery near Ypres in rescuing wounded men on five occasions under very heavy fire in the most fearless manner and for twice previously saving machine guns by carrying them out of action. On numerous occasions Drummer Kenny conveys urgent messages under very dangerous circumstances over fire swept ground.

Captain Robert Edward Rising (Gloucestershire Regiment) will be awarded the Distinguished Service Order when he goes up with supports and controls the defense of his battalion’s trenches against a determined attack by the enemy at Langemarck. But for his defense the line must have been penetrated.  He will be killed in two weeks. Lieutenant Ralph Escott Hancock (Devonshire Regiment) displays conspicuous gallantry in leaving his trench under very heavy fire and going back some sixty yards over absolutely bare ground to pick up Corporal Warwick who had fallen while coming up with a party of reinforcements.  Lieutenant Hancock conveyed this NCO to the cover of a haystack and then returned to his trench. For his actions on this day he will be awarded the DSO. He will be killed in six days.

Today’s losses include:

  • Cousin of the future Queen Mother Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon whose brother will be killed in action next year
  • Survivor of the Empress of Ireland sinking earlier this year
  • Grandson of the 13th Earl of Stratchmore and 26th Earl of Crawford
  • Great grandson of Field Marshall the 1st Baron Raglan who commanded British troops in the Crimean War
  • Son of a former Minister for Defence and the Colonial Secretary for New Zealand
  • Grandson of the 2nd Baron Carwshaw
  • Great grandson of the 2nd Earl of Verulam
  • Multiple sons and grandson of clergy
  • Son of a General
  • Son of Baronet
  • Grandson of a Waterloo veteran and nephew of Redan veteran
  • Great nephew of a man killed at the battle of Quatre Bras
  • Father of a man who will be killed in the Second World War
  • Multiple examples of families that will lose two sons
  • Two Gloucester cricket players
  • Somerset cricket player

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

 Lieutenant Charles Lindsay Claude Bowes-Lyon (Black Watch) is killed at age 29.  The son of ‘the Honorable’ Francis and Lady Bowes-Lyon was a survivor of the Empress of Ireland sinking the previous May. He is the grandson of the 13th Earl of Strathmore and 26th Earl of Crawford and cousin of the future Queen Mother whose brother will be killed in action next year.

  •  Captain Horace Sylvester Grimston (Wiltshire Regiment) is killed at Ypres at age 22. He is the grandson of the Honorable and Reverend Francis Sylvester Grimston and great grandson of the 2nd Earl Verulam.
  • Captain Edward Frederick Maltby Urquhart(Black Watch) is killed at age 37. He is the only son of the Reverend Edward William Urquhart Vicar of King’s Sutton and he served in the South African War.
  • Captain Walter Russell Russell(Northamptonshire Regiment) is killed at age 33.  He is the son of the late Captain ‘Sir’ William Russell Russell former Minister for Defence and Colonial Secretary of New Zealand.
  • Captain Lawrence Peel(Yorkshire Regiment commanding 7th Divisional Cyclist Company) is killed at age 30. He is the husband of the Honorable Mrs. L Peel and grandson of William Brocks 2nd Baron Crawshaw of Crawshaw.
  • Lieutenant Francis Lennox Holmes (South Staffordshire Regiment) is killed at age 27. He is the son of Major General Ponsonby Ross Holmes (Royal Marines), his uncle William served at the Redan and his grandfather served at Waterloo.
  • Lieutenant William Stanley Yalland (Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at age 25. He was a cricketer for Gloucestershire in the 1910 County Championship.
  • Lieutenant Frederic William Joseph MacDonald Miller (Grenadier Guards) is killed at age 22. He is the son of ‘Sir’ William Frederic Miller the 5th Baronet and his great uncle Lieutenant Colonel William Miller died of wounds at the Battle of Quatre Bras on 17 July 1815.
  • Lieutenant William Stanley (Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed leading an attack on a German trench at age 25. He played cricket for Clifton and Gloucestershire.
  • Lieutenant Ivan Boyd Sprot (Cameron Highlanders) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed in less than three weeks. His wife is the granddaughter of ‘Sir’ William Muir.
  • Second Lieutenant Cecil Kingsley (North Lancashire Regiment) is killed. He played Rugby Football for the Bedford Town Club.
  • Second Lieutenant Norman Arthur Henry Somerset (Grenadier Guards) the son of Captain the Honorable Arthur Charles Edward Somerset is killed in action at age 20. He is the great grandson of Field Marshall FitzRoy James Henry Somerset the 1st Baron Raglan commanding officer of British troops in the Crimean War.
  • Second Lieutenant Eric Laurene Arthur Hart Burges (Wiltshire Regiment) is killed by a shell on his 23rd He is the son of the Reverend J Hart Burges DD Rector of Devizes and grandson of the Reverend W C Burges.
  • Second Lieutenant Harold Edwin Hippisley(Gloucestershire Regiment) is killed at Langemarcke when two platoons hold a trench against a large enemy attack, as all the officers and sixty percent of the men are killed.  He played cricket for Somerset before the war and dies at age 24.
  • Private Henry Thomas Imbert(Border Regiment) is killed at age 29.  His son will die on active service in Italy in July 1945.
  • Private Charles Ernest Trout (Devonshire Regiment) is killed at age 27. His brother will be killed next May.
  • Private Cecil Harry Barrett (Dorsetshire Regiment) is killed at age 30. His brother will be killed in October 1917.

photo from findagrave.com

Thursday 22 October 1914 – We Lost 466

 Golf Union of Wales

As part of the First Battle of Ypres, the Coldstream Guards, as part of the 4th Guards Brigade, attacks the high ground covering Langemarck and hold it until relieved tomorrow.

Private Henry May (Cameronians) will be awarded the Victoria Cross for most conspicuous bravery near La Boutillerie in voluntarily endeavoring to rescue under heavy fire a wounded man who is killed before Private May can save him. Subsequently on this day he carries a wounded officer a distance of three hundred yards into safety while exposed to very severe fire.

Drummer Spencer John Bent (East Lancashire Regiment) brings up ammunition under heavy shellfire.

Admiral Cradock leaves Port Stanley in HMS Good Hope to join the rest of his squadron on the west coast of South America.

Rebels in South Africa are routed at Keimoes.

Today’s casualties include:

  • A Welsh Amateur Golf Champion
  • Sons and grandsons of clergy
  • Battalion commander
  • Nephew of a man killed in the Zulu War
  • Son of Baron Burnham
  • Sons of Baronets
  • Grandsons of Generals
  • Son of a Victoria Cross winner
  • Son-in-law and great grandson of Justice’s of the Peace
  • Multiple families that will lose two sons

 Today’s highlighted casualty is

Second Lieutenant Henry Noel Atkinson DSO (Cheshire Regiment) dies of wounds received two days earlier at age 25, when a German attack near Violaines succeeded in driving the Cheshire Regiment out of the village. He is the son of the late Reverend Canon Arthur Atkinson and grandson of the Bishop of Calcutta. He was the Welsh Amateur Golf Champion in 1913.

  • Lieutenant Colonel Bertram Edmund Ward (commanding 1st Middlesex Regiment) dies of wounds at age 50 in an ambulance train near Boulogne received near La Boutillerie the previous day at Le Maisnil. He is the great grandson of the Reverend John Savile Ogle.
  • Major William Northey DSO (Durham Light Infantry) dies of wounds at age 38. He is the son of the Reverend Edward William Northey and his uncle Lieutenant Colonel F W Northey was killed in the Zulu War while in command of the 3rd King’s Royal Rifle Corps while his brother Lieutenant Colonel E Northey commanded the 1st King’s Royal Rifle Corps and was wounded at Aisne. He also served in the South African War.
  • Captain Thomas Henry Rivers Bulkeley CMG MVO (Scots Guards) is killed at age 38. He is a veteran of the South African War and the son-in-law of Lady Lillian Yorke Lady in Waiting to H R H the Duchess of Connaught and the late ‘Sir’ Henry Pelly 3rd
  • Captain Mervyn Keats Sandys (York and Lancs Regiment) is killed at age 30. He is the grandson of Lieutenant General George Sandys and great grandson of Myles Sandys JP DL.
  • Captain Ronald Hugh Walrond Rose (Cameronians) is killed at age 34. His brother will be killed next month serving in the Royal Engineers.
  • Captain William Arthur Mould Temple(Gloucestershire Regiment) dies of wounds received the previous day in the lung at age 42.  He served in the South African War and is the son of Colonel William Temple VC and grandson of Major General Mould CB. He is the son-in-law of J P L Hazledine JP.
  • Lieutenant William St John Coventry (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 21. He is the grandson of the Reverend John Coventry.
  • Lieutenant William Bernard Webster Lawson(Scots Guards) is killed in action at age 21. He is the son of Colonel ‘the Honorable’ William Webster Levy-Lawson DSO the 3rd Baron Burnham.
  • Lieutenant Charles Roger Ripley(York and Lancaster Regiment) is killed in action at age 25. He is the son of the late ‘Sir’ Frederick Ripley, the 1st Baronet and grandson of ‘Sir’ Henry Ripley.
  • Lieutenant Frederick Robert Pollock (Coldstream Guards) dies of wounds received in action one day short of his 29th He is the eldest son of the late Robert Erskine Pollock KC.
  • Private Arthur William Carman (West Surrey Regiment) is killed. His brother will be killed in June 1916.
  • Private Henry Stillman (Somerset Light Infantry) is killed at age 37. His brother will be killed next month in the explosion of HMS Bulwark.

Monday 28 September 1914 – We Lost 66

HMS Chatham arrives at Zanzibar. She discovers that Captain Ingles of the HMS Pegasus has been busy fortifying the harbor against another raid. He has managed to salvage the cruiser’s 4-inch guns, which luckily had fallen free of the ship when she capsized.

Lance Corporal Frederick William Dobson (Coldstream Guards) will be awarded the Victoria Cross for conspicuous gallantry at Chavanne (Aisne) in bringing into cover, on two occasions under heavy fire, wounded men who are lying exposed in the open. Lance Corporal Albert Victor Brown of the same regiment will be awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for assisting to remove into safety the wounded that are lying exposed in the open on this day.  He will be killed on 5 November 1914.

This day sees two Bristol Scout single-seater aircraft join active Royal Flying Corps squadrons in France. This is the first allocation in the field of a type of aircraft which will be used primarily for air fighting – the fast single-seater scout – and as such it demonstrates a crucial new awareness, that of opposing combatants in the sky. The new offensive mood is evident in the armament these machines receive.  Fifth Squadron hastily fixes a Lee-Enfield rifle angled off from the propeller arc, provides a Mauser pistol to the pilot and attaches an external rack with five hand grenades.  Third Squadron also fits a rifle on each side of the Scout’s fuselage, angled at 45 degrees.

  • Son of a battalion commander
  • Daughter born tomorrow
  • Son of clergy
Braine Communal Cemetery

Braine Communal Cemetery

  • Captain Julian Alan Spencer Mitchell (Shropshire Light Infantry) dies of wounds at age 28. He is the son of Temporary Lieutenant Colonel Spencer Mitchell commanding 20th Manchester Regiment. His daughter was born yesterday. He is buried in Braine Communal Cemetery
  • Captain and Adjutant Alexander Marjoribanks (Sikhs) dies of cholera at Datta Khel, India at age 35. He is the son of the late Reverend George Marjoribanks and served in the Somaliland and Mohmand Expeditions in 1902 and 1908.

Tuesday 22 September 1914 – We Lost 1,582

HMS Aboukir

HMS Aboukir

While patrolling the Broad Fourteens, latitude 52.18 north, longitude 3.41 east, off the Dutch coast, the cruiser HMS Aboukir is torpedoed by the submarine U9. The two cruisers in company, HMS Hogue and HMS Cressy, are ordered to close to their sinking sister ship to pick up survivors.  As they stop, they too are torpedoed by U9. All three Bacchante class cruisers go to the bottom, taking 1,459 men with them while 837 are rescued.  The ships lost are insignificant, as they are obsolete; though the event is made more tragic by the fact that the majority of the crews are naval reservists. The Hogue is sunk by two torpedoes fired from a range of only three hundred yards, so close that the submarine has to execute swift maneuvers to avoid a collision with the sinking ship.

SMS Emden bombs the harbor at Madras. She hits four storage tanks containing 346,000 gallons of kerosene.  Moored at a buoy in the harbor is SS Chupra (Captain W C Morrison). A stray shell hits the bunker hatch on the boat deck at the starboard side and explodes. Cadet Joseph Saul Fletcher, age 17 receives many wounds and dies almost instantly.  This is the only fatal casualty inflicted by Emden on a Merchant Mariner during her cruise. Sub Lieutenant Bonstead of the Fort St. George battery rallies his men and manages to organize the firing of nine shells from her elderly guns, none of which find their target. The material effect of Emden’s bombardment is little when compared to the psychological. For days afterwards the trains going inland are crowded with people anxious to place themselves out of range of the shells of the “mystery ship” not only at Madras but also all along the coast.

Private George Ward (Berkshire Regiment) reports back to his battalion, having left eight days earlier claiming to be wounded. He has not been wounded and is court martialed for cowardice. Ward is shot on the recommendation of his corps commander, General ‘Sir’ Douglas Haig, to act as an example to others. Ward’s execution is in fact botched. As he is being taken out to be shot he breaks away from the guard and is shot in the back. He is then brought back on a stretcher and shot in the head by the sergeant of the guard to “finish him off”.

The Royal Naval Air Service carries out the first two British air raids of the war against German soil.  Two aircraft each set out to attack the Zeppelin sheds at Dusseldorf and Cologne. Only Lieutenant Charles Herbert Collet reaches his target, the Dusseldorf airship shed. He drops four bombs, only one of which explodes, inflicting little damage. He later states that “the surprise was complete and numerous Germans in the vicinity ran in all directions”.  All four return safely to their base.  Collet will later be killed on 19 August 1915 while serving at Gallipoli.

Lieutenant Gilbert William Mapplebeck (Royal Flying Corps), exchanges shots with an Albatross two-seater while on a kite balloon bombing mission.  He is wounded in the leg thus becoming the first Royal Flying Corps pilot to be wounded by fire from an enemy aircraft in the Great War.  He will be accidentally killed in August 1915. The airship Beta flies over London to see if Zeppelins can locate targets in foggy weather conditions. The results are inconclusive.

Today’s casualties include:

  • A member of Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s last Antarctic expedition
  • Families that will lose sons
    • Multiple of examples of families that will lose two and three sons
    • Two families that will lose four sons
    • A family that will lose five sons
  • A man whose wife’s first husband was killed in the South African War
  • A Royal Marine whose son will be killed as a 14-year old bugler in the Royal Marines
  • Thirteen young naval Midshipmen
  • Brothers who are killed on the same day, one at sea in the Naval battle and one in the Army on the Western Front
  • Son of a Justice of the Peace
  • Two men whose sons will be born after their fathers deaths
  • Grandson of a Victoria Cross winner
  • Son of clergy
  • A Naval Chaplain
  • Son of a former Member of Parliament
  • Grandson of the 8th Earl of Shaftesbury
  • Son of an Admiral and a son of a General
  • A holder of the Royal Humane Society Medal for Life Saving

Today’s casualties of the day

Lieutenant Oscar William Tottie serving on HMS Aboukir is killed in the sinking at age 22.  His brother Lieutenant Eric Harold Tottie is killed in action as a Lieutenant in the Northumberland Fusiliers during the Battle of the Aisne in France at age 19. These two brothers die on the same day but in very different places. They are sons of W H and Mary Barron Tottie (nee Blake, grand-daughter of Commodore Blake, U S Navy) of Sherlocks, Ascot, Berkshire.

HMS Aboukir casualties include:

  • Lieutenant Commander Thomas Edmund Harrisonis killed at age 34. His brother will be killed in the explosion of HMS Natal in December 1915.  The Engineer Commander on HMS Aboukir is Alfred Everitt Everitt and he is killed.  He is the son of the Reverend William Everitt.
  • Midshipman Geoffrey George Gore-Browne dies at age 15; he is the grandson of Colonel H G Gore-Browne VC DL JP who won his Victoria Cross at Lucknow. He had been the Chief Cadet Captain at the Royal Naval College, Osborne earlier this year.
  • Midshipman Alan Diarmid Campbell Robertson is killed at age 15.
  • Midshipman Geoffrey Bruce Barchard is killed at age 15
  • Midshipman Herbert Lawson Riley is killed at age 15
  • Midshipman John Duncan Stubbs is killed at age 15.
  • Midshipman Anthony Victor George Allsopp age 15 the son of the late Honorable George Higginson Allsopp MP and Lady Mildred Allsopp, the third daughter of the 8th Earl of Shaftesbury.
  • Chaplain Edward Gleadall Uphill Robsonis killed at age 32.
  • Cook’s Mate 2nd Class Edward Milleris killed at age 20.  His brother will be killed in action in May 1918 while serving in the Bedfordshire Regiment.
  • Private James Prior (Royal Marines) becomes the first of five brothers to lose their lives in the Great War. A sixth brother was killed while serving in the Royal Marines in 1912 in the accidental explosion of a gun during exercises on HMS King Edward VII.
  • Leading Stoker John Robert Fendley is killed. His brother will die during the influenza outbreak three days after the Armistice while serving in the Army Cyclist Corps.
  • Stoker 1st Class Lenham Yates dies at age 21. His brother will be killed next March in France.
  • Able Seaman Charles Tulloch Finlayson is killed at age 36. His brother will be killed on the merchant ship Vineyard in November 1916.
  • Able Seaman William Pointer is killed at age 29. His brother will be lost in the sinking of Royal Edward next year.
  • Able Seaman Sidney Thomas Claw is killed at age 34. His nephew will be killed in the loss of HMS Clan McNaughton next February.

The Cressy’s casualties include:

  • Captain Robert Warren Johnson who is killed at age 47. He is the son of Vice Admiral John Ormsby Johnson.
  • Lieutenant Commander Walter Bousfield Watkins Grubb is lost at age 35. His only child a son will be born next year.
  • Lieutenant Commander Bernard Matheson Harvey is last seen helping his men to keep afloat. He was the son of the Honorable Augustus Harvey.
  • Midshipman Claude Phillipe Delmege is killed. He is the son of the Deputy Inspector General of the Royal Navy.
  • Midshipman John Aubrey Froudeis killed at age 16.  He is the only son of Ashley Froude CMG and the grandson of James Anthony Froude, late Regius Professor of Modern History Oxford University.
  • Midshipman Frank George Matthewsis also killed at age 16.  He is the son of Brigadier General F B Matthews CB DSO.
  • Midshipman Vernon Hector Crobyn is killed at age 16.
  • Stoker 1st Class Frank Herbert Browning age 21 is one of seven sons who serve, four of whom are killed.
  • Able Seaman Alfred Augustus Dunk age 32. He was awarded the Medal for life saving by the King at the wreck of ‘Delhi’.
  • Able Seaman Arthur Chestney is the first of three brothers who will be killed in the Great War.
  • Able Seaman Coulson Henry Crascall is killed at age 36. His brother will be killed in April 1917.
  • Seaman Robert John Ladd is killed at age 26. His brother will be killed next June serving in the East Kent Regiment.
  • Stoker 1st Class William Burgess is killed at age 18. He is the first of four sons of Thomas and Mary Ann Burgess who will die as a result of war service.
  • Able Seaman William James Frederick is killed. He is a holder of the Royal Humane Society’s Medal for life saving.
  • Leading Cook’s Mate Walter Charles Nelson Hall is killed at age 23. His brother will be killed in October 1916.

The casualties on HMS Hogue include:

  • Lieutenant Commander Henry Edward de Parny Rennick (HMS Hogue) who was a member of Captain Scott’s last expedition and during the voyage of the Terra Nova and was charge of tracking the depth soundings.
  • Midshipman Geoffrey Charles Harold is killed at age 15. His brother will be killed in 1918.
  • Midshipman Harold Henshaw Ward is killed at age 15.
  • Midshipman Cecil William Holt is killed at age 15. His brother will be killed in October 1917.
  • Petty Officer 1st Class George William Emptage is killed at age 39. His wife’s first husband was killed in the South African War.
  • Ship’s Chief Cook William Neill is killed at age 40. He is a holder of the Messina Medal.
  • Able Seaman Albert Edward Beaney is killed at age 35. His brother will be killed in 5 weeks when his ship HMS Falcon is shelled off the Belgian coast.
  • Private John Llewellyn Timmins (Royal Marine Light Infantry) is killed at age 45. His son will be killed on HMS Cardiff in November 1917 as a fourteen year old bugler.
  • Stoker 1st Class William Charles Harris is lost at age 27. His brother was killed five days before.

Others lost today include:

  • Lieutenant and Adjutant John Cusack Forsyth (Royal Field Artillery) is killed at age 31. He is the first of three brothers who are killed in the Great War.
  • Lieutenant Thomas Gilliat Meautys(West Yorkshire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 25.  He is the son of Thomas Arrowsmith Meautys JP and his only son will be born in April 1915 and will die on service shortly after the end of World War II at age 32. He has two brothers who will be killed in action in the Great War.
  • Private Charles Machin (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 22. His is the first of three brothers who will be killed in the war.

photo – wikipedia.org