Diary February 29, 1916

Diary for Tuesday, February 29, 1916: Western Front Verdun: Bloody struggle round Fresnes and salient. Falkenhayn finally agrees to attack on west bank of Meuse, releases 4 divisions and 84 heavy guns for it). February losses: 30,000 French, 25,000 Germans.… learn more

Diary February 28, 1916

Diary for Monday, February 28, 1916: Western Front Verdun: Sudden thaw after long cold spell turns battlefield into a sea of mud but Voie Sacree kept open with gravel by 3,000 Territorials. Germans attack astride d’Eix stream; to north regain… learn more

Diary February 27, 1916

Diary for Sunday, February 27, 1916: Western Front Verdun: Petain reorganizes defences, halts withdrawal from Woevre. French retake La Feuille wood (night 27/28), defend Soupple village and d’Eix­-Abaucourt station. On north of Verdun front Germans attempt to enlarge gains east… learn more

Diary February 26, 1916

Diary for Saturday, February 26, 1916: Western Front Verdun: GQG admits loss of Ft Douaumont. Recapture attempt fails. Petain orders ‘… retake immediately any piece of land taken by the enemy’, tells Castelnau ‘On ne passe pas’ (They shall not… learn more

Diary February 25, 1916

Diary for Friday, February 25, 1916: Home Fronts French Army orders 400 Schneider tanks by November 25, 1916. Western Front Verdun: Castelnau arrives at 0700 hours. Germans take Louve­mont, but are stopped before Douaumont village (until February 26). Fall of… learn more

Diary February 24, 1916

Diary for Thursday, February 24, 1916: Western Front Verdun: French artillery counter­-bombard. Germans take Samogneux (fighting all day), Hill 344, Beaumont Fosses wood and Chaume with 10,000 PoWs (now total including among 16,224 casualties to French 72nd and 51st Divisions).… learn more

Diary February 23, 1941

Diary for Wednesday, February 23, 1941: Western Front Verdun: French abandon Brabant-sur-Meuse; counter­attack without success south of Caures wood and at Wavrille. By end of day Germans also occupy Herbebuis and Wavrille, have advanced just over 2 miles and taken… learn more

Diary February 22, 1916

Diary for Tuesday, February 22, 1916: Western Front Verdun: Despite French counter-attacks (2,350 casualties), Germans develop gains of February 21 to win Brabant-sur-Meuse woods, all Caures wood (Colonel Driant killed, only 118 men of his 1,300 Chasseurs escape) and Haumont… learn more

Diary February 21, 1916

Diary for Monday, February 21, 1916: Western Front BATTLE OF VERDUN BEGINS (until December 18): From 0715 hours violent 9-hour artillery preparation by 1,240 guns (including 150 mortars) on 8-mile front including gas shells (French field guns reply from 1300… learn more

Diary February 20, 1916

Diary for Sunday, February 20, 1916: Air War Western Front: 34 Anglo-German air combats (7 on February 24). Britain: 4 German seaplanes drop 25 bombs on Walmer and Lowestoft, 2 casualties; 26 defending aircraft ascend. Western Front Flanders: Germans make… learn more

Diary February 19, 1916

Diary for Saturday, February 19, 1916: African Fronts East Africa: Smuts reaches Mombasa and assumes command, forms Lake Force and reaches Nairobi on February 23. Kitchener approves his offensive on February 25. Southern Fronts Albania: Italian Savona Brigade outposts repel… learn more

Diary February 18, 1916

Diary for Friday, February 18, 1916: Air War Austria – First long-distance Italian bombing raid: Caproni bombers drop almost 4,000 lb bombs on Laibach in retaliation for Austrian raid on Milan (February 14). Southern Fronts Italian Front: Italian advance in… learn more

Diary February 17, 1916

Diary for Thursday, February 17, 1916: Middle East Mesopotamia: King George V message of encouragement to Kut. Armenia: Siberian Cossacks and infantry take 5,000 PoWs and 42 guns in pursuit from Erzerum. East Persia: ­Brigade-General Dyer made GOC, takes command… learn more

Diary February 16, 1916

Diary for Wednesday, February 16, 1916: Middle East Armenia: Yudenich captures Erzerum, many Arabs desert Turks, who have lost 15,000 men including 5,000 PoWs and 327 guns against 9,000 Russian losses (4,000 frostbite). Mesopotamia: British War Office takes control of… learn more

Diary February 15, 1916

Diary for Tuesday, February 15, 1916: Air War Western Front: Ball joins No 13 Squadron (BE2c artillery spotters). Middle East Persia: Anglo-Bakhtiari agreement for oilfield protection. Neutrals USA: Senator Root attacks foreign policy but Republicans promise support for anti-U-boat policy.… learn more

Diary February 14, 1916

Diary for Monday, February 14, 1916: Western Front Flanders: German attacks take 600 yards of trench north of Ypres canal, south of Ypres­-Comines railway and near Saint­-Eloi. British 17th Division loses the Bluff. France: Franco­-British Conference at Chantilly determines final… learn more

Diary February 13, 1916

Diary for Sunday, February 13, 1916: Southern Fronts Albania: Bulgar First Army takes Elbasan. Western Front Champagne: German success between Tahure and Somme-py; French counter­attacks fail on February 14-16. Vosges­: Between Seppois and French frontier, Germans penetrate and hold French… learn more

Diary February 12, 1916

Diary for Saturday, February 12, 1916: African Fronts East Africa – Action at Salaita Hill (8 miles from Taveta): Major Kraut’s 1,320 German soldiers (43 casualties) repulse Malleson‘s 6,000 British troops (more than 138 casualties). Western Front Champagne: German diversionary… learn more

Diary February 11, 1916

Diary for Friday, February 11, 1916: Home Fronts Britain: BEF GHQ orders 40 Mk I tanks, Lieutenant-Colonel Swinton increases order to 100 (appointed commander of Machine-Gun Corps unit for crews on February 16). Canada: 240,000 volunteers enlisted to date. Western… learn more

Diary February 10, 1916

Diary for Thursday, February 10, 1916: Air War Britain: Air defence responsibilities reallocated: demarcation line fixed at the coast; Army/RFC supplant RN/RNAS inland. Army to ‘also provide the aeroplanes required to work with the home troops and to protect garrisons… learn more