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Gallery Solace - The Great War 1914-1918
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April 2015

30th April 1915




Private William Lonsdale’s death sentence was commuted to 20-years. The incident involved 250 POWs who had failed to assemble quickly enough for the Germans and a general fracas then erupted between British prisoners and the guards. Private Lonsdale was singled out for punching a guard. He was eventually given an outright pardon from the Kaiser.


“In the House of Commons yesterday Mr. Lloyd George disclosed the plans for the Government for dealing with the drink problem in the munitions areas.” So reported the central article on page 9, which gave extra prominence to this by doubling to column width for its report on the Chancellor’s new measures, which basically came to increasing duties on the more alcoholic drinks and implementing state control of the sales of liquors in munitions and principal camping areas to enable restrictions as to the availability of such drinks. However, the Telegraph was clearly of the mind that even these proposals, far short of what many had been proposing, were too much, as the leader on page 8 states “we wish we could think that they do not go far beyond what is necessary” and was back to the old days of Lloyd George-bashing with its critical tone as to his whole stance on the matter

29th April 1915







Although the latest reports in todays Daily Telegraph from the front were of the Germans being beaten back (page 9), it was their use of gas which rather dominates the paper today. On page 9 scientist John Scott Haldane reports from the front on his conclusions having visited those affected, and another Canadian eyewitness report on page 7 confirming the suspicion chlorine was used. Meanwhile Clementine Churchill describes the use as “not very clever” on page 4.
With regards to the War Office plea for home-made respirators in the previous day’s paper it is reported on page 9 that the public has responded enthusiastically, whilst photos of two mocked-up examples can be found on page 3. Jumping on the bandwagon, Harrods advertises items which can be used to make them on page 6, as does John Barker of Kensington on page 7.
Also in today’s paper
- A National Gallery committee to enquire as to the retention of important pictures in the UK makes its report on page 6. They don’t recommend an export ban, but the increase in grants for purchase to the gallery. Funny that
- A French armoured cruiser is torpedoed in the Adriatic by an Austrian submarine, whose commander is reported to be Lt Georg Ritter von Trapp – page 9. If the name rings a bell, it’s the Sound of Music man - The Church of England resolves to add Charles I to its Calendar of Saints (page 9) at a convocation where the Bishop of Chelmsford attacks newspapers for “advocating what is practically free love, using the stress and strain of the present difficulty to advocate it” (page 10)



28th April 1915


The bitty nature of the Daily Telegraph a century ago is in evidence today with the coverage of the three main stories of the day, the fighting around Ypres, the Gallipoli landings and Earl Kitchener’s denunciation of the German treatment of prisoners of war. All can be found reported on pages 9 and 10, but the reports covering each of these are spread across the pages, so if you were to read the paper systematically across the page, you end up jumping from story to story, with Gallipoli in particular consisting of a series of short reports.
Also in today’s paper
- A Canadian gives eyewitness testimony on the Germans’ gas attack on page 8, and in response to this attack the War Office appeals for people to make home-made respirators to send to the front on page 9. Meanwhile eminent scientists give conflicting views as to what was actually used on page 7
- Sir Edward Carson writes on page 10 calling for a clampdown on gaming houses which fleece money off young officers
- The Red Cross sale at Christie raises over £38,000, with the offer of a John Singer Sargent portrait going for £10,000 - page 11

27th April 115



“The grand assault on the Dardanelles has begun, and a new page in the history of the war has opened.” Thus opened the leader on page 8 of todays Daily Telegraph as news came of the landings at Gallipoli. The leader was rather sanguine about the opening of this campaign – “we have put our hand to one of the most hazardous operations,” “it is well that the dimensions of the task on which the Allied fleet and army have entered should not be under-estimated” and “no doubt the landing has been effected at a price – probably the casualties have been considerable,” but wasn’t short of trumpeting its significance – “an event which is bound to affect the whole course of the war in Europe

26th April 1915


In today's Daily Telegraph the Second Battle of Ypres now fully underway it is unsurprising to see it taking up the lion’s share of the main news page (page 9), with the “magnificent” Canadians in the thick of the action, being forced to fall back before retaking their lost guns, despite the admission of many casualties. A leader on page 8 comments on the situation, but surprisingly does not fulminate against the Germans’ use of gas as much as you might have expected from the tone of previous leaders, seemingly more outraged at the German treatment of 39 Allied prisoners in reprisal for the treatment of their submarine crews; the names of these men are reported on page 9

25th April 1915

Richard Raymond Willis VC
Richard Raymond Willis VC
On 25 April 1915 west of Cape Helles, Gallipoli, Turkey, three companies and the Headquarters of the 1st Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers, when landing on W Beach, were met by a very deadly fire from hidden machine-guns which caused a large number of casualties. The survivors, however, rushed up and cut the wire entanglements notwithstanding the terrific fire from the enemy and after overcoming supreme difficulties, the cliffs were gained and the position maintained.
Cuthbert Bromley VC
Cuthbert Bromley VC
On the 25th April, 1915, headquarters and three companies of the 1st Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers in effecting a landing on the Gallipoli Peninsula to the West of Cape Helles, were met by very deadly fire from hidden machine guns, which caused a great number of casualties. The survivors, however, rushed up to and cut the wire entanglements, notwithstanding the terrific fire from the enemy, and after overcoming supreme difficulties, the cliffs were gained and the position maintained. Amongst the many very gallant officers and men engaged in this most hazardous undertaking, Captain Bromley, Serjeant Stubbs, and Corporal Grimshaw have been selected by their comrades as having performed the most signal acts of bravery and devotion to duty.
William Stephen Kenealy VC
William Stephen Kenealy VC
On 25th April, 1915, three companies, and the Headquarters of the 1st Bn. Lancashire Fusiliers, in effecting a landing on the Gallipoli Peninsula to the West of Cape Helles, were met by a very deadly fire from hidden machine guns which caused a great number of casualties. The survivors, however, rushed up to and cut the wire entanglements, notwithstanding the terrific fire from the enemy, and after overcoming supreme difficulties, the cliffs were gained and the position maintained. Amongst the many very gallant officers and men engaged in this most hazardous undertaking, Capt. Willis, Serjt. Richards, and Pte. Kenealy have been selected by their comrades as having performed the most signal acts of bravery and devotion to duty.
John Elisha Grimshaw VC
John Elisha Grimshaw VC
Alfred Joseph Richards
Alfred Joseph Richards
On 25 April 1915 west of Cape Helles, Gallipoli, Turkey, three companies and the Headquarters of the 1st Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers, when landing on W Beach, were met by a very deadly fire from hidden machine-guns which caused a large number of casualties. The survivors, however, rushed up and cut the wire entanglements, notwithstanding the terrific fire from the enemy and, after overcoming supreme difficulties, the cliffs were gained and the position maintained.
Frank Edward Stubbs VC
Frank Edward Stubbs VC
On the 25th April, 1915, headquarters and three companies of the 1st Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers, in effecting a landing on the Gallipoli Peninsula to the West of Cape Helles, were met by very deadly fire from hidden machine guns, which caused a great number of casualties. The survivors, however, rushed up to and cut the wire entanglements, notwithstanding the terrific fire from the enemy, and after overcoming supreme difficulties, the cliffs were gained and the position maintained. Amongst the many very gallant officers and men engaged in this most hazardous undertaking, Captain Bromley, Serjeant Stubbs, and Corporal Grimshaw have been selected by their comrades as having performed the most signal acts of bravery and devotion to duty.
Scheduled for the 23rd of April but postponed until the 25th due to bad weather allied forces put boots on the ground on the Gallipoli peninsular.  The 29th Division was to land at Helles under the command of Major General Aylmer Hunter-Weston. The division landed on five beaches named as 'S', 'V', 'W', 'X' and 'Y' Beaches. The Anzacs, with the 3rd Infantry Brigade spearheading the assault, were to land north of Gaba Tepe on the Aegean coast, The French made a diversionary landing at Kum Kale on the Asian shore, before re-embarking to hold the eastern area of the Helles sector. There was a diversion by the Royal Naval Division, including a solo effort by New Zealander Bernard Freyberg at Bulair,

At V beach the first wave of troops were landed from ships boats that were towed or rowed ashore, followed by troops landed from the SS River Clyde, a converted collier. Six Victoria Crosses were awarded at V Beach to sailors or men from the Royal Naval Division who had attempted to maintain the bridge of lighters and recover the wounded, including Commander Unwin, Sub-Lieutenant Arthur Walderne St Clair Tisdall, Able Seaman William Charles Williams, Seaman George McKenzie Samson and Midshipmen, George Leslie Drewry and Wilfred St Aubyn Malleson. Lieutenant Colonel Charles Doughty-Wylie was awarded a posthumous VC for leading the attack to finally capture Sedd el Bahr on the morning 26 April, during which William Cosgrove of the 1st Royal Munster Fusiliers also won a VC

At W Beach troops were landed from thirty-two cutters rowed to the shore. Six Victoria Crosses were awarded to troops who took part in the landing on W Beach

The landings at S, X, Y and Kum Kale were the most successful, through surprise, close naval support and the inability of the Ottomans to garrison all of the coast, only the most obviously vulnerable points. The main landings at V and W beaches were the most costly. Naval ships which moved close inshore to bombard the Ottoman positions, had some effect and at W Beach were able to suppress Ottoman return fire after the early British losses. At V Beach the bombardments had less effect and the ploy of landing from River Clyde failed, leaving the survivors stranded until 26 April. The landing at Y Beach was a success because it was unopposed, yet the difficulty of bombarding the high ground was the cause of much of the British difficulty. While greatly outnumbered, the Ottomans made good use of their field fortifications, machine-guns and rifles to defend the beaches and obstruct any advance inland.

24th April 1915

23rd April 1915

22nd April 1915

21st April 1915

20th April 1915

19th April 1915



With the talks between Italy and Austria-Hungary collapsing without agreement, it looked like that as well as having to face pressure from Russia in the Carpathians, the latter would face a second front in the south. Already rumours of activity were rife, with alleged Austrian incursions into Italy, one of which led to 100 fatalities, although were these just a pretext for Italian action. Certainly the report of Italy’s rounding up of “numerous German and Austrian spies who infect the kingdom” suggested she was preparing for such a thing (all articles page 9).
Also in today’s paper
- The War Office takes steps to free up Civil Servants for enlistment via the recruitment of women to do their jobs – page 7
- A Turkish attack on a British transport ship leaves 51 dead or missing, despite the ship being undamaged – page 9
- A Greek ship travelling from Amsterdam to Buenos Aires is the latest victim of German U-boats – page 9 - A lengthy account of the Battle of Neuve Chapelle from an unnamed correspondent can be found on pages 9 and 10 - Shipyard workers’ disputes led to the loss of a quarter of all working hours in March – page 10

18th April 1915

HMS. E15

Under the command of Lieutenant-Commander Theodore S. Brodie, HMS E15 was one of 57 submarines of the "E" class and was assigned to the British Dardanelles Squadron. On the 17th April, while submerged she ran aground  near Kepez Point directly under the guns of Fort Dardanus, Chlorine gas began escaping from the subs damaged batteries which forced the crew to evacuate the sub and surrender to the Turkish army. Lieutenant-Commander Theodore S. Brodie and six other crew members were killed in the action a further six more members of HMS E15 crew would die while being incarcerated in a Turkish prisoner war camp near Istanbul.

FOOTNOTE:A number of attempts to destroy E15 by the British had failed, until two picket boats one from HMS Triumph and another from HMS Majestic crewed entirely by volunteers managed to sink E15 with a torpedo. One crew man was killed when Majestic picket boat was hit by shell fire, her crew being rescued and returned to safety by Lieutenant Commander Eric Robinson in command of HMS Triumphs picket boat

17th April 1915



In today's Telegraph:Joining the ranks of those giving calls for peace short shrift was former American President Theodore Roosevelt, whose letter to a lady who asked his advice on associating with the Women’s Party for the Constructive Peace of America is reprinted on page 9. Given the views expressed here, such as the movement being “base and silly” whilst Congressmen passing resolutions “in favour of peace in the abstract do not do one particle of good,” and especially “it is base and evil to clamour for peace in the abstract when silence is kept about the concrete and hideous wrongs done to humanity at this very moment. Belgium has been trampled into bloody mire”, it was clear where his sympathies lay. Roosevelt had stood for the Presidency in the 1912 election, losing to Wilson - just how much would history have been different had he won given these sentiments?
Also in today’s paper
- The continuing Brides in the Bath case takes up over half of page 4, with the geographical spread of witnesses ever widening
- The latest report from General Headquarters spends much of its time blackening the German Army with tales from deserters and prisoners – page 7
- The air war continues to hot up, as more Zeppelins attack England and more allied aircraft attack the Germans – page 9 - A New York World correspondent who has visited a German prisoner of war camp gives a better impression than many stories have of conditions there – page 11 - The women’s page (page 12) laments the take-up to the register of women for war work, with it reckoning 33,000 is a poor response. Not that Mrs. Eric Pritchard is concerned as she turns her eye to fashions for country and river life

16th April 1915


In today's Telegraph A par for the course day where everything the Allies do is above board but the same cannot be said for the Germans, whose “frightfulness” extends to torpedoing Dutch shipping in a report on page 9. For example, the same page contains news both of Allied air raids and German ones, with Lowestoft the latest target for the latter. Naturally Allied raids are purely on military targets, whereas the Germans indiscriminately attack hospitals and civilians.
Even where the British Government has to apologise to Chile (or Chili as the Telegraph spelt it in 1915) over the sinking of the German Cruiser Dresden which had been interned by that country, there were exculpating reasons – there was ignorance of the fact by British ships whilst the Dresden, being a perfidious German ship, could easily be pretending, abusing Chilean hospitality and there was indeed nothing to indicate the Dresden was anything other than a ship ready to depart and resume combat (page 7).
Also as usual where a report is about the Germans such as the one of page 8 about German-Americans visiting arms manufacturer Krupps, it is quite clear from the tone that of the article was about Americans visiting British munitions factories the tone of the article would be kinder.
Also in today’s paper
- Official British army casualty figures are given for the war up to April 11th, and now total 139,347 – page 9 - More statistics on page 10 over the victims of German “submarine pirates” with only two ships falling victim to them in the week up to April 14 - The official French account of their victory at Eparges appears on page 11, as they had to fight their away in a “mountain of mud

15th April 1915




In today’s Daily Telegraph on page 9 an official despatch on the Battle of Neuve Chapelle. The report gives details of the total number of Allied casualties. Over 2,500 killed, 8,500 wounded and nearly 2,000 missing. 572 officers and 12,239 men were Allied casualties of the battle in total, but as the report goes on to note to offset this several thousand Germans were killed, over 12,000 wounded and 1,687 taken prisoner. It’s the first time that the scale of the carnage on the Western front is really brought home with figures, and makes for sobering reading. For good measure the full despatch of the battle is printed on page 12.

14th April 1915

Under the command of  Major General Charles Mellis a small British garrison of 6156 men at Shaiba, southwest of Basra had been under attack by 18000 Ottoman forces lead by Lieutenant Colonel Süleyman Askerî since the 12 of April. The objective of the Ottoman counteroffensive was to retake the city of Basra which had been captured by the British.
On April 14, the British left Shaiba and engaged the Ottomans at Barjisiyeh Wood. Fighting started at about 10:30 AM, under the intense heat the British assault began to falter and by 4 PM the British attack had bogged down. Exhausted, thirsty and running low on ammunition it was the Dorset’s who launched a last gasp bayonet charge on the Ottoman lines, forcing the Ottomans to retreated from the battlefield. The British, worn out from the day's fighting with little transportation and with their cavalry tied down elsewhere, were in no fit state did pursue. Sulaimann Askari would end up committing suicide over the loss, which he blamed on Arab irregulars and their failure to support him. On the British side the battle was described as a "soldier's battle" meaning a hard fought infantry fight, where they, especially the British troops, decided the day.

13th April 1915

12th April 1915

10th April 1915

9th April 1915

8th April 1915

7th April 1915


With nothing particularly new, notable or out of the standard reports happening today, save perhaps Bulgaria’s denial that its nationals raided Serbia (see April 5), claiming it was Turks in the country driven to revolt by bad treatment who rose up and attacked the Serbs, before crossing into Bulgaria as refugees (page 10), there’s little to particularly focus on in today’s paper, but here’s some items of note
The Serbian Relief Fund claim in an advert on page 6 that if it wasn’t for her stand against four Austrian army corps the current Dardanelles action could not have taken place. Not sure how the Austrian army could have prevented it
- As if to accentuate the lack of any fighting at the front, the latest Eye-Witness report from General Headquarters is all about how the army is supplied as issues arising – page 7
- The American Ambassador in Berlin writes to his counterpart in London to clear up certain issues concerning the treatment of prisoners of war in Germany – page 8
- Lord Kitchener looks to improve the supply of munitions of war by going along the time-honoured road of setting up a Committee – page 9 - An official statement from Paris claims well over half of all German army officers are killed, wounded or missing – page 9 - Regulations are relaxed on firework displays by the War Office – page 10 - The Health and Sunshine column on page 13 almost unanimously proclaims the Easter holiday to have been successful around the resorts and spas

6th April 1915



H M S Queen Elizabethwould see service in both World Wars. Posted to the Dardanelles shortly after her commission, She would later join the Grand Fleet based at Scapa Flow, but would  miss the Battle of Jutland due to being in dock for maintenance. During the Second World War she was mined and seriously damaged by Italian frogmen in an attack on 19 December 1941 in shallow water in the harbour at Alexandria. The vessel was paid off in June and scrapped in July 1948.

Margaret Ellen Nally’s
brutal murder on the 4th of April despite appeals for witnesses and information in the national papers would remain unsolved.


 Andrew Ernest Stoddartas a cricketer he played 16 Test matches captaining England in 8 games and held the record for the highest ever score in cricket at the time with an innings of 485. As a rugby player he played in 10 rugby union internationals for England and captained England four times. He helped organise what became recognised as the first British Lions rugby union tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1888..



3rd April 1915

1st April 1915