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Title: The Battle of the Falkland Islands - Before and After
Author: Spencer-Cooper, Henry Edmund Harvey
Language: English
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[Illustration:  _Glasgow_        _Cornwall_        _Leipzig_


  The "Cornwall" engaging the "Leipzig"

  _From a Colour Drawing by Lieut.-Comm. H. T. Bennett, R.N._

  The Battle of the
  Falkland Islands

  Before and After

  Commander H. Spencer-Cooper

  _With Coloured Frontispiece
  and Ten Maps and Charts_

  London, New York, Toronto and Melbourne

  To the Memory

  of the

  Officers and Men

  of the Royal Navy and the Royal Naval Reserve

  who so gallantly gave their lives in the actions
  described in this book


  Part I.--Exploits off South America

  CHAPTER                                           PAGE

   1. GERMAN MEN-OF-WAR IN FOREIGN SEAS                3



   4. LIFE AT SEA IN 1914                             28

   5. THE SINKING OF THE "CAP TRAFALGAR"              35

   6. THE ACTION OFF CORONEL                          45

   7. CONCENTRATION                                   60


  Part II.--The Battle of the Falklands

   9. AWAY SOUTH                                      79

  10. ENEMY IN SIGHT                                  87

  11. THE BATTLE-CRUISER ACTION                       96

  12. THE END OF THE "LEIPZIG"                       110

  13. THE SINKING OF THE "NÜRNBERG"                  124

  14. AFTERMATH                                      134


  16. VON SPEE'S AIMS AND HOPES                      151

  17. THE PARTING OF THE WAYS                        158

  18. THE LAST OF THE "DRESDEN"                      163

  Part III.--Official Dispatches

   1. THE ACTION OF H.M.S. "CARMANIA"                169




   5. THE SURRENDER OF THE "DRESDEN"                 194


    ACTIONS RECORDED                                 197

  INDEX                                              221



  THE WAR ZONE IN WESTERN SEAS                         5

  DUEL                                                39

  SIGHTED                                             49


  CHART OF "CORNWALL" ACTION (_Inset_)                79

  CHART OF BATTLE-CRUISER ACTION (_Inset_)            79




  DUEL BETWEEN "KENT" AND "NÜRNBERG"                 127


This plain, unvarnished account, so far as is known, is the first
attempt that has been made to link with the description of the
Falkland Islands battle, fought on December 8th, 1914, the events
leading up to that engagement.

In order to preserve accuracy as far as possible, each phase
presented has been read and approved by officers who participated.
The personal views expressed on debatable subjects, such as strategy,
are sure to give rise to criticism, but it must be remembered that
at the time of writing the exact positions of the ships engaged in
overseas operations were not fully known, even in the Service.

The subject falls naturally into three divisions:

PART I. deals briefly with the movements of British and German
warships, and includes the duel fought by the _Carmania_, and the
action that took place off Coronel.

PART II. describes the Falkland Islands battle itself, and the
subsequent fate of the German cruiser _Dresden_.

PART III. contains the official dispatches bearing on these exploits.

The words of Alfred Noyes have been referred to frequently, because
they are in so many respects prophetic, and also because of their
influence in showing that the spirit of Drake still inspires the
British Navy of to-day.

The author takes this opportunity of expressing his warmest thanks
to those who have helped him in collecting information and in the
compilation of this book.



      "Meekly content and tamely stay-at-home
      The sea-birds seemed that piped across the waves;
      And Drake, bemused, leaned smiling to his friend
      Doughty and said, 'Is it not strange to know
      When we return, yon speckled herring-gulls
      Will still be wheeling, dipping, flashing there?
      We shall not find a fairer land afar
      Than those thyme-scented hills we leave behind!
      Soon the young lambs will bleat across the combes,
      And breezes will bring puffs of hawthorn scent
      Down Devon lanes; over the purple moors
      Lav'rocks will carol; and on the village greens
      Around the maypole, while the moon hangs low,
      The boys and girls of England merrily swing
      In country footing through the flowery dance.'"

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).




  "I, my Lords, have in different countries seen much of the
  miseries of war. I am, therefore, in my inmost soul, a
  man of peace. Yet I would not, for the sake of any peace,
  however fortunate, consent to sacrifice one jot of England's
  honour."--(_Speech by Lord Nelson in the House of Lords, November
  16th, 1802._)

We are now approaching the end of the third year of this great
war,[1] and most Englishmen, having had some of the experience that
war inevitably brings with it, will agree that the words which
Nelson spoke are as true to-day as when they were uttered just over
a century ago. Furthermore, as time and the war go on, the spirit
of the whole British nation--be it man or woman--is put to an
ever-increasing test of endurance, which is sustained and upheld by
those two simple words, "England's Honour." An old platitude, "Might
is Right," is constantly being quoted; but the nation that reverses
the order is bound to outlast the other and win through to the
desired goal. The justness of the cause, then, is the secret of our
strength, which will not only endure but bring success to our arms
in the end.

When Great Britain plunged into this Armageddon on August 4th, 1914,
the only German squadron not in European waters was stationed in the
Western Pacific, with its main base at Tsingtau. In addition there
were a few German light cruisers isolated in various parts of the
world, many of them being in proximity to British squadrons, which
would point to the fact that Germany never really calculated on Great
Britain throwing in her lot on the opposite side.

The recent troubles in Mexico accounted for the presence of both
British and German cruisers in those waters, where they had been
operating in conjunction with one another in the most complete
harmony. As an instance, it might be mentioned that on August 2nd,
1914, one of our sloops was actually about to land a guard for one of
our Consulates at a Mexican port in the boats belonging to a German
light cruiser!

A short description of some of the movements of the German ships
during the first few months of war will suffice to show that
their primary object was to damage our overseas trade as much as
possible. Further, since it is the fashion nowadays to overrate
Germany's powers of organisation and skill, it will be interesting
to observe that in spite of the vulnerability of our worldwide trade
comparatively little was achieved.

The German squadron in China was under the command of Vice-Admiral
Count von Spee. The outbreak of war found him on a cruise in the
Pacific, which ultimately extended far beyond his expectations. The
two armoured cruisers _Scharnhorst_--in which Admiral von Spee flew
his flag--and _Gneisenau_ left Nagasaki on June 28th, 1914. Their
movements southward are of no particular interest until their arrival
on July 7th at the Truk or Rug Islands, in the Caroline group,
which then belonged to Germany. After a few days they leisurely
continued their cruise amongst the islands of Polynesia. About
the middle of the month the light cruiser _Nürnberg_ was hastily
recalled from San Francisco, and sailed on July 21st, joining von
Spee's squadron at Ponape (also one of the Caroline Islands), where
the three ships mobilised for war. On August 6th they sailed for an
unknown destination, taking with them an auxiliary cruiser called the


  The Mappa Co. Ltd London

Apparently they were somewhat short of provisions, particularly of
fresh meat and potatoes, for it was said in an intercepted letter
that their diet consisted mainly of "spun yarn" (preserved meat).

On August 22nd the _Nürnberg_ was sent to Honolulu to get papers
and to send telegrams, rejoining the squadron shortly afterwards.
A day or two later she was again detached, this time to Fanning
Island, where she destroyed the British cable station, cut the cable,
rejoining the squadron about September 7th, apparently at Christmas
Island. Hearing that hostile forces were at Apia (Samoan Islands),
von Spee sailed southward only to find, on his arrival, that it was
empty of shipping.

The squadron now proceeded eastward to the French Society Islands to
see what stores were to be found there. Completing supplies of coal
at Bora Bora Island, it suddenly appeared off Papeete, the capital
of Tahiti, on September 22nd. A French gunboat lying in the harbour
was sunk by shell-fire, the town and forts were subjected to a heavy
bombardment, whilst the coal stores were set on fire. Calling in
later at the Marquesas Islands, the German Admiral shaped his course
eastward toward Easter Island, which was reached on October 12th.

The light cruiser _Leipzig_ sailed from Mazatlan, an important town
on the west coast of Mexico, on August 2nd. Ten days later she was
reported off the entrance to Juan de Fuca Straits, between Vancouver
and the mainland, but never ventured inside to attack the naval
dockyard of Esquimalt. When war broke out the Canadian Government
with great promptitude purchased two submarines from an American
firm at Seattle; this was probably known to the Germans, and might
account for their unwillingness to risk an attack on a port that was
otherwise practically defenceless.

The Canadian light cruiser _Rainbow_, together with the British
sloop _Algerine_, did excellent work on this coast. The former, in
particular, showed much zeal in shadowing the _Leipzig_, though they
never actually met.

The _Leipzig_ achieved absolutely nothing worthy of note, although
she remained on the west coast of America for a long time. It was
not till the middle of October that she joined Admiral von Spee's
squadron at Easter Island, without having caused any damage to the
British Mercantile Marine.

The light cruiser _Dresden_ was at St. Thomas, one of the larger of
the Virgin Islands group, West Indies. She sailed on August 1st and
proceeded straight to Cape Horn, only staying her career to coal at
various places _en route_ where she was unlikely to be reported.
Crossing and re-crossing the trade route, she arrived on September
5th at Orange Bay, which is a large uninhabited natural harbour a
few miles to the north-west of Cape Horn. Here she was met by a
collier, and stayed eleven days making adjustments to her engines.
She evidently considered that she was now free from danger--we had
no cruisers here at this period--for she continued her course into
the Pacific, easing down to a speed of 8½ knots, and keeping more in
the track of shipping. She met the German gunboat _Eber_ on September
19th, to the northward of Magellan, and continued her way, apparently
on the look out for allied commerce, but only succeeded in sinking
two steamers before joining the flag of Admiral von Spee at Easter
Island on October 12th. Altogether she sank three steamers and four
sailing vessels, representing a total value of just over £250,000.

The light cruiser _Karlsruhe_, the fastest and most modern of the
German ships on foreign service, was in the Gulf of Mexico at the
commencement of the war. On her way to her sphere of operations in
the neighbourhood of Pernambuco she was sighted on August 6th, whilst
coaling at sea from the armed liner _Kronprinz Wilhelm_, by the
British cruiser _Suffolk_. Admiral Cradock, who was then flying his
flag in the _Suffolk_, immediately gave chase to the _Karlsruhe_,
the _Kronprinz Wilhelm_ bolting in the opposite direction. During
the forenoon Admiral Cradock called up by wireless the light cruiser
_Bristol_, which was in the vicinity, and, giving her the position of
the _Karlsruhe_, ordered her to intercept the enemy. The _Karlsruhe_
was kept in sight by the _Suffolk_ for several hours, but was never
within gun-range, and finally escaped from her by superior speed. It
was a beautiful moonlight evening when the _Bristol_ sighted her
quarry at 8 P.M., and a quarter of an hour later opened fire, which
was returned a few moments later by the _Karlsruhe_, but it was too
dark for either ship to see the results of their shooting. All the
enemy's shots fell short, so that the _Bristol_ incurred no damage.
Both ships went on firing for fifty-five minutes, by which time the
German had drawn out of range. Admiral Cradock signalled during the
action, "Stick to it--I am coming"; all this time the _Suffolk_ was
doing her best to catch up, but never succeeded in reaching the scene
of the first naval action in the world-war. The German disappeared in
the darkness, and was never seen again by our warships.

In her subsequent raids on British commerce along the South Atlantic
trade routes the _Karlsruhe_ was, on the whole, successful, until she
met a sudden and inglorious end off Central America. Her fate was
for a long time shrouded in mystery, the first clue being some of
her wreckage, which was found washed up on the shores of the island
of St. Vincent in the West Indies. Some of her survivors eventually
found their way back to the Fatherland and reported that she had
foundered with 260 officers and men--due to an internal explosion
on November 4th, 1914, in latitude 10° 07′ N., longitude 55° 25′ W.
(_See_ Map p. 5.)

In all she sank seventeen ships, representing a value of £1,622,000.

There remain three German armed merchant cruisers that claim our
attention on account of their operations off South America. The _Cap
Trafalgar_ only existed for a month before being sunk by the armed
Cunard liner _Carmania_. A description of the fight is given in a
subsequent chapter.

The _Prinz Eitel Friedrich_ was more directly under the orders of
Admiral von Spee, and acted in conjunction with his squadron in the
Pacific until the battle of the Falkland Islands, when she operated
on her own account against our trade with South America. She achieved
some measure of success during the few months that she was free,
and captured ten ships altogether, several of which, however, were
sailing vessels. Early in March she arrived at Newport News in the
United States with a number of prisoners on board, who had been
taken from these prizes. She was badly in need of refit; her engines
required repairs, and the Germans fondly imagined that they might
escape internment. On hearing that one of her victims was an American
vessel, public indignation was hotly aroused and but little sympathy
was shown for her wants. Her days of marauding were brought to an
abrupt termination, for the Americans resolutely interned her.

Lastly, there was the _Kronprinz Wilhelm_, which, as we have seen,
was in company with the _Karlsruhe_ when the latter was sighted and
chased by the _Suffolk_ only two days after war was declared. She was
commanded by one of the officers of the _Karlsruhe_, and worked under
her orders in the Atlantic. In fact, the German cruiser transferred
two of her Q.F. guns to the armed merchantman, and they were mounted
on her forecastle. She was skilful in avoiding our cruisers and
literally fed upon her captures, being fortunate in obtaining coal
with fair frequency. In the course of eight months the _Kronprinz
Wilhelm_ captured and destroyed fifteen British or French ships,
four of which were sailing vessels. It will be realised how small
was the toll of our ships sailing these seas, especially when it is
recollected that the main object of the Germans at this time was to
make war on our maritime trade. Finally, sickness broke out on board
and there were several cases of beriberi; moreover, the ship leaked
and was in want of repairs, so on April 11th she also steamed into
Newport News and was interned.

That the Germans did not approach the results they hoped for in
attacking our commerce was in a large measure due to the unceasing
activity of our cruisers, who forced the German ships to be
continually on the move to fresh hunting grounds. Thus, although
many of them escaped capture or destruction for some time, they were
perpetually being disturbed and hindered in their work of depredation.

The exploits of the light cruisers _Emden_ and _Königsberg_ are
outside the scope of this book, but the following brief summary may
be of interest.

Sailing from Tsingtau on August 5th, with four colliers, the _Emden_
apparently proceeded to cruise in the neighbourhood of Vladivostock,
where she captured a Russian auxiliary cruiser and one or two
merchant ships, before going south to make history in the Bay of
Bengal. She was eventually brought to book off the Cocos Islands on
November 9th, 1914, by the Australian light cruiser _Sydney_, in a
very gallant action which lasted over an hour and a half, when she
ran herself ashore in a sinking condition on North Keeling Island.
She sank seventeen ships all told, representing a total value of

The _Königsberg_, at the commencement of hostilities, was lying at
Dar-es-Salaam, the capital of what was formerly German East Africa.
She sank the _Pegasus_, a light cruiser only two-thirds of her size
and of much inferior armament, at Zanzibar on September 20th, but
only succeeded in sinking one or two steamers afterwards. She was
eventually discovered hiding in the Rufiji Delta in German East
Africa, towards the end of October, 1914, where she was kept blocked
up by our ships for nearly nine months. Finally, on July 11th, 1915,
she was destroyed by gunfire by the monitors _Severn_ and _Mersey_,
who went up the river--the banks on both sides being entrenched--and
reduced her to a hopeless wreck where she lay, some fourteen miles
from the sea.



It is clearly impossible to state with any exactitude the motives
which governed von Spee's policy; but, in briefly reviewing the
results, a shrewd idea of the reasons which led him to certain
conclusions may be formed. Also, it will assist the reader to a
conclusion on the merits and demerits of the strategy adopted, and
will help him to follow more easily the reasons for some of the
movements of our own ships described in the next chapter.

That Admiral von Spee did not return to Tsingtau at the outbreak of
hostilities appears significant, since he was by no means inferior to
our squadron, and wished to mobilise his ships. He, however, sent the
_Emden_ there with dispatches and instructions to the colliers about
meeting him after she had escorted them to sea. Japan, it will be
remembered, did not declare war till August 23rd, 1914, and therefore
could scarcely have come into his earlier calculations. His action in
continuing his cruise in the Southern Pacific, where he was handy and
ready to strike at the French colonies[2] at the psychological moment
of the outbreak of hostilities, gives the impression that he did not
consider England's intervention probable.

Previous to the war, the _Leipzig_ and _Nürnberg_ had been detached
to the West Coast of America, and it appears likely that von Spee was
influenced in his decision to remain at large in the Pacific by this
fact, as, before this dispersal of his squadron, he would have been
distinctly superior to the British Fleet in the China Station at that
time. Great care was taken by him to keep all his movements secret,
and he appears to have avoided making many wireless signals.

The decision of the British Government to proceed with operations
against the German colonies in the Southern Pacific must have had a
determining effect on German policy; this decision was made at the
very outset and allowed the enemy no time to make preparations to
counter it. The value of the patriotism and loyal co-operation of the
Dominions in building up their own Navy in peace time was now clearly
demonstrated, Australia being the first of our Dominions to embark on
this policy.

The German China squadron was inferior in strength to our ships in
Australian waters, and could not afford to risk encountering the
powerful battle-cruiser _Australia_ with her eight 12-inch guns;
consequently, von Spee was compelled to abandon the many colonies
in Polynesia to their fate. Finally, the advent of Japan into the
conflict left him little choice but to make his way to the eastward,
since not to do so was to court almost certain destruction, while to
move west and conceal his whereabouts was an impossibility. That von
Spee felt his position to be precarious, and had difficulty in making
up his mind what to do, is shown by the slow and indecisive movement
of his squadron at first.

The movements of the German light cruisers lead to the conclusion
that they must have received orders to scatter so as to destroy our
trade in various spheres. The _Leipzig_ apparently patrolled the
western side of North America, whilst the _Karlsruhe_ took the South
Atlantic, and so on.

Why the _Dresden_ should have steamed over 6,000 miles to the Pacific
instead of assisting the _Karlsruhe_ is hard to explain, unless she
had direct orders from the German Admiralty. She could always have
joined von Spee later.

With the exception of the _Emden_, who operated with success in the
Bay of Bengal, and the _Karlsruhe_, whose area of operations was
along the junction of the South Atlantic and the West Indian trade
routes, none of them succeeded in accomplishing a fraction of the
damage that might reasonably have been expected at a time when our
merchantmen were not organised for war and business was "as usual."
It cannot be denied that the _Emden's_ raids wholly disorganised the
trade along the east coast of India. The local moneylenders--who are
the bankers to the peasants--abandoned the coast completely, trade
nearly came to a standstill, and the damage done took months to
recover. In this case the effects could by no means be measured by an
armchair calculation of the tonnage sunk by the _Emden_ in pounds,
shillings and pence.

The main anxiety of the German Admiral lay in the continuance of his
supplies, which could only be assured by careful organisation. This
was rendered comparatively easy in South America, where every port
teemed with Germans; the wheels of communication, through the agency
of shore wireless stations, were well oiled by German money, and
there were numerous German merchantmen, fitted with wireless, ready
to hand to be used as supply ships or colliers.

It was thus of paramount importance that the German Squadron should
be rounded up and annihilated before it could become a serious menace
to our trade and that of our Allies. The other remaining light
cruisers of the enemy, who were operating singly, could be dealt with
more easily, since our ships could afford to separate in order to
search for them, thus rendering it only a matter of time before they
were destroyed.

What was the object, then, of the German Admiral? This was the
all-important question that occupied the thoughts of all our naval
officers in foreign parts. On the assumption that he would come
eastwards, there appeared to be few choices open to him beyond the

(1) To bombard the seaports of our colonies on the west coast of
Africa and to attack weakly defended but by no means valueless naval
stations (such as St. Helena), at the same time operating against
British and French expeditions going by sea against German colonies.

(2) To go to South Africa, destroy the weak British squadron at the
Cape, and hang up Botha's expedition by supporting a rising against
us in the South African Dominions.

(3) To endeavour to make his way home to Germany.

(4) To operate in the North Atlantic.

(5) To harass our trade with South America.

Both the first and second appeared quite feasible, but they had the
twofold disadvantage of involving actions nearer England and of
very possibly restricting the enemy a good deal in his movements;
there are few harbours on this coast, and his every movement would
become known in a region where we held the monopoly in methods of
communication. Consequently, any success here was bound to be more or
less short-lived. On the other hand, matters were undoubtedly very
critical in these parts. De la Rey, when he was shot, was actually
on his way to raise the Vierkleur at Potchefstroom, and any striking
naval success which it would have taken us three weeks to deal with
at the very least, might have just set the balance against us at this
time in the minds of the waverers. Moreover, it would not have been
difficult to ensure supplies from the German colonies.

The third may be dismissed as being extremely improbable at the
outset, for it is difficult to run a blockade with a number of ships,
and, for the enemy, it would too much have resembled thrusting his
head into the lion's jaws. Besides, he could be of far greater
service to his country in roaming the seas and in continuing to be a
thorn in our side as long as possible.

The fourth will scarcely bear examination; cut off from all bases, he
could hardly hope to escape early destruction.

The fifth seemed by far the most favourable to his hopes, as
being likely to yield a richer harvest, and, if successful, might
paralyse our enormous trade with South America, upon which we were so

German influence was predominant as well as unscrupulous along the
Brazilian coasts, which would render it easy to maintain supplies. To
evoke sympathy amongst the smaller Republics would also come within
his horizon. Finally, he could have had little idea of our strength
in South Africa; whereas information gleaned from Valparaiso (which
von Spee evidently considered reliable) as to the precise extent of
our limited naval resources then on the east coast of South America,
must have proved a deciding factor in determining his strategy.

Whichever course were adopted, it was practically certain that the
German Admiral would move eastwards, either through the Straits
of Magellan or, more probably, round the Horn to avoid having his
whereabouts reported. That this occurred to the minds of our naval
authorities before the action off Coronel took place is practically
certain, but it is to be regretted that reinforcements to Admiral
Cradock's squadron operating in South American waters were not sent
there in time to prevent that disaster.

This, then, in brief, was the problem that presented itself to our
commanders after the battle of Coronel took place, and no doubt
influenced them in the choice of the Falkland Islands as a base, its
geographical position making it almost ideal in the event of any move
in that direction on the part of the Germans.



                                "If England hold
      The sea, she holds the hundred thousand gates
      That open to futurity. She holds
      The highways of all ages. Argosies
      Of unknown glory set their sails this day
      For England out of ports beyond the stars.
      Ay, on the sacred seas we ne'er shall know
      They hoist their sails this day by peaceful quays,
      Great gleaming wharves i' the perfect City of God,
      If she but claims her heritage."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

Before attempting to give a description of the battle of the Falkland
Islands, it is necessary to review very briefly the movements and
dispositions of our ships, as well as the events preceding the
battle, which include both the duel between the armed merchant
cruiser _Carmania_ and _Cap Trafalgar_ and the action fought off
Coronel on the coast of Chile by Admiral Cradock.

Our naval forces were scattered in comparatively small units all
over the world when war broke out. Ships in various squadrons
were separated from one another by great distances, and, with the
exception of our Mediterranean Fleet, we possessed no squadron in any
part of the globe equal in strength to that of von Spee.

Attention is directed to the positions of Easter Island, where the
Germans had last been reported, Valparaiso, Coronel, Magellan
Straits, Staten Island, the Falkland Islands, Buenos Ayres,
Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro, Pernambuco, and the Island of Trinidad
off the east coast of South America, since they occur continually in
the course of this narrative.[3]

In the early part of 1914 Rear-Admiral Sir Christopher Cradock,
K.C.V.O., C.B., flying his flag in the _Suffolk_, was in command
of the fourth cruiser squadron, which was then doing some very
useful work in the Gulf of Mexico. On August 2nd he was at Kingston,
Jamaica, and received information that the _Good Hope_ was on her way
out to become his flagship, so he sailed northwards to meet her. On
the way he sighted and gave chase to the _Karlsruhe_ on August 6th,
as has been related. The _Suffolk_ and the _Good Hope_ met at sea ten
days later, and the Admiral went on board the latter immediately and
hoisted his flag.

Turning south, he went to Bermuda, called in at St. Lucia on August
23rd, and thence proceeded along the north coast of South America
on his way to take up the command of a newly forming squadron of
British ships patrolling the trade routes and protecting the merchant
shipping in South American waters. At St. Lucia Admiral Cradock would
probably have learned of the sailing of von Spee's squadron from
Ponape on August 6th, and this accounts for his haste in making south
in order to meet and form his ships together.

The squadron was gradually augmented as time went on, and in the
months of September and October, 1914, consisted of the flagship
_Good Hope_ (Captain Philip Francklin), _Canopus_ (Captain Heathcoat
Grant), _Monmouth_ (Captain Frank Brandt), _Cornwall_ (Captain W. M.
Ellerton), _Glasgow_ (Captain John Luce), _Bristol_ (Captain B. H.
Fanshawe), and the armed merchant cruisers _Otranto_ (Captain H. McI.
Edwards), _Macedonia_ (Captain B. S. Evans), and _Orama_ (Captain J.
R. Segrave).

No news was obtainable as to the whereabouts of the German squadron
stationed in the Pacific, which consisted of the _Scharnhorst_,
_Gneisenau_, _Emden_, _Nürnberg_, and _Leipzig_, except that it was
known that the two latter had been operating on the east side of the
Pacific, and that the _Emden_ was in the Bay of Bengal. The vaguest
rumours, all contradicting one another, were continually being
circulated, in which it is more than likely that German agents had a
large share.

Admiral Cradock proceeded south in the middle of September to
watch the Straits of Magellan, and to patrol between there and
the River Plate, as he doubtless hoped to prevent the _Karlsruhe_
and _Dresden_--which, when last heard of, were in South American
waters--from attempting to effect a junction with their main
squadron. With him were the _Monmouth_, _Glasgow_, and the armed
Orient liner _Otranto_, in addition to his own ship the _Good Hope_,
which, together with his colliers, had their first base in the
Falkland Islands.

On hearing of the appearance of the Germans off Papeete and of the
bombardment of the French colony there on September 22nd, it was
apparently considered expedient to proceed to the west coast of South
America in order to intercept the enemy. Accordingly, early in
October the _Monmouth_, _Glasgow_, and _Otranto_ went round to the
Pacific, diligently searching out the many inlets and harbours _en
route_, and arrived at Valparaiso on October 15th, but only stayed
a part of one day in order to get stores and provisions. They then
went back southwards to meet the _Good Hope_ and _Canopus_, vainly
hoping to fall in with the _Leipzig_ or _Dresden_ on the way. The
_Good Hope_ reached the Chilean coast on October 29th, and all ships
filled up with coal; the _Canopus_ was due very shortly, and actually
sighted our ships steaming off as she arrived.

In order to carry out a thorough and effective examination of the
innumerable inlets that abound amongst the channels of Tierra del
Fuego, in addition to the bays and harbours on both coasts of South
America, it became necessary to divide up this squadron into separate
units. To expedite matters, colliers were sent to meet our ships, so
that valuable time should not be lost in returning to the base at the
Falkland Islands. The first fine day was seized to fill up with coal,
care always being taken to keep outside the three-mile territorial

It must have been a trying and anxious time for both officers and
men, while pursuing their quest, never knowing what force might
suddenly be disclosed in opening out one of these harbours. From the
weather usually experienced in these parts some idea may be formed of
the discomforts. An officer in the _Glasgow_, writing of this period,
says: "It blew, snowed, rained, hailed, and sleeted as hard as it
is possible to do these things. I thought the ship would dive under
altogether at times. It was a short sea, and very high, and doesn't
suit this ship a bit. The _Monmouth_ was rather worse, if anything,
though not quite so wet. We were rolling 35 degrees, and quite
useless for fighting purposes. The ship was practically a submarine."

Imagine, too, the position of the _Otranto_, searching these waters
by herself, without the least hope of being able to fight on level
terms with one of the enemy's light-cruisers. The words of one of her
officers sum up the situation: "We finally got past caring what might
happen," he said; "what with the strain, the weather, and the extreme
cold, we longed to find something and to have it out, one way or the

When the depredations of the _Karlsruhe_ became more numerous, the
Admiralty dispatched ships--as could best be spared from watching
other trade routes--to reinforce Admiral Cradock's command. Thus,
what may be termed a second squadron was formed, consisting of
the _Canopus_, _Cornwall_, _Bristol_, the armed P. & O. liner
_Macedonia_, and the armed Orient liner _Orama_. This latter squadron
carried out a fruitless search during September and October for the
ever elusive _Karlsruhe_, but, so far as is known, did not succeed in
getting near her, for she was never actually sighted. In the absence
of orders from Admiral Cradock, the duties of Senior Naval Officer
of this northern squadron frequently involved the consideration of
matters of no little consequence. These duties primarily devolved
upon the shoulders of Captain Fanshawe of the _Bristol_, who was
succeeded on the arrival of the _Canopus_ by Captain Heathcoat Grant.
As the poor state of the engines of the _Canopus_ did not enable
her to steam at any speed, she remained at the base and directed
operations, forming a valuable link with her wireless. Orders,
however, were received from Admiral Cradock which necessitated her
sailing on October 10th in order to join his southern squadron, so
that Captain Fanshawe was again left in command.

On October 24th the _Carnarvon_ (Captain H. L. d'E. Skipwith)
arrived, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral A. P. Stoddart, who, though
acting under the orders of Admiral Cradock, now took charge of the
sweeping operations necessitated by our quest. Admiral Stoddart had
previously been in command of the ships operating along our trade
routes near the Cape Verde Islands, where the _Carnarvon_ had not
long before made a valuable capture, the German storeship _Professor
Woermann_, filled with coal and ammunition.

The comparatively large number of men-of-war mentioned is accounted
for by the fact that at this time the _Karlsruhe_ began to make her
presence felt by sinking more merchant ships, which caused no little
apprehension amongst the mercantile communities in all the ports on
the north and east coasts of South America, Brazilian firms at this
period refusing to ship their goods in British bottoms, although some
British vessels were lying in harbour awaiting cargoes. The German
ship's activities were mainly confined to the neighbourhood of St.
Paul's Rocks, Pernambuco, and the Equator.

It is not easy to put clearly the disposition of the ships acting
under Admiral Cradock at this time, nor to give an adequate idea of
the many disadvantages with which he had to contend. The difficulties
of communication on the east coast of South America between his two
squadrons were very great, on account of the long distances between
them (often some thousands of miles and always greater than the range
of our wireless). The only method found feasible was to send messages
in code by means of passing British merchantmen--usually the Royal
Mail liners. The inevitable result of this was that it was frequently
impossible for Admiral Cradock to keep in touch with his northern
squadron, and important matters of policy had thus to be decided on
the spot, the Admiral being informed later.

On the rare occasions that our ships visited Brazilian ports, which
were crowded with German shipping, the crews of these ships, having
nothing better to do, would come and pull round our cruisers--in
all probability cursing us heartily the while--much to the interest
and amusement of our men. These visits could only take place at the
most once every three months, when the opportunity of getting a good
square meal at a civilised restaurant was hailed with delight by
those officers who were off duty.

Our coaling base in these waters was admirably selected. There was
sufficient anchorage for a large number of ships four or five miles
from any land, but protected from anything but a heavy swell or sea
by surrounding ledges of coral awash at low water. Sometimes colliers
got slightly damaged by bumping against our ships when there was a
swell, but in other respects it suited its purpose excellently. The
Brazilians sent a destroyer to investigate once or twice, but could
find nothing to arouse their susceptibilities, for our ships were
always well outside the three-mile limit. Our sole amusement was
fishing, frequently for sharks.

Towards the latter part of August, the armed merchant cruiser
_Carmania_ (Captain Noel Grant) was sent out to join Admiral
Cradock's squadron with coal, provisions, and a large quantity of
frozen meat, which was sadly needed. She was ordered by him to assist
the _Cornwall_ in watching Pernambuco on September 11th, as it was
thought that the German storeship _Patagonia_ was going to put to
sea on September 11th to join the _Karlsruhe_. On her way south she
got orders to search Trinidad Island in the South Atlantic to find
out whether the Germans were making use of it as a coaling base, and
there fell in with the German armed liner _Cap Trafalgar_, which
she sank in a very gallant action that is described in a subsequent

The armed merchant cruiser _Edinburgh Castle_ (Captain W. R. Napier)
was sent out from England with drafts of seamen and boys, as well
as provisions and stores for our men-of-war in these waters. On her
arrival at the base on October 12th, she was detained on service
to assist in the sweep that had been organised to search for the
_Karlsruhe_. Some of us have pleasant recollections of excellent
games of deck hockey played on the spacious promenade deck during her
all too short stay with us.

The _Defence_ (Captain E. La T. Leatham) touched at the base to coal
on October 27th, being on her way south to join Admiral Cradock's
southern command. She had to coal in bad weather, and perforated the
collier's side in doing so, but succeeded in completing with coal in
the minimum possible time under difficult conditions. Without loss
of time she proceeded to Montevideo, but never got any farther, as
it was there that the news of the Coronel disaster first reached
her. Admiral Cradock hoped to find von Spee before the German
light-cruisers _Dresden_ and _Leipzig_ joined the main squadron;
but he also was most anxious to wait for the _Defence_. She would
have made a very powerful addition to his squadron, and it seems a
thousand pities that it was not possible to effect this junction
before he quitted the eastern shores of South America for the Pacific.

The _Defence_ was very unlucky, and had a great deal of hard work
without any kudos; not till Admiral Sturdee's arrival did she leave
to join the _Minotaur_ on the Cape of Good Hope station, and the
very day she arrived there got the news of the Falkland Islands
battle! Having covered 23,000 miles in two and a half months, the
disappointment at having missed that fight was, of course, intense.
It is sad to think that few of her gallant crew are alive to-day, as
she was afterwards sunk in the battle of Jutland.

The _Invincible_, flagship of Vice-Admiral F. C. Doveton Sturdee
(Captain P. H. Beamish), the _Inflexible_ (Captain R. F. Phillimore,
C.B., M.V.O.), and the _Kent_ (Captain J. D. Allen) enter the scene
of operations later.



      "A seaman, smiling, swaggered out of the inn,
      Swinging in one brown hand a gleaming cage
      Wherein a big green parrot chattered and clung
      Fluttering against the wires."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

A short digression may perhaps be permitted, if it can portray the
long days, when for months at a time little occurs to break the
monotony of sea life. The reader may also experience the charitable
feeling that, at the expense of his patience, the sailor is indulging
in the "grouse" that proverbially is supposed to be so dear to him.

Of necessity, work on board ship in wartime must be largely a matter
of routine; and, though varied as much as possible, it tends to
relapse into "the trivial round, the common task." All day and all
night men man the guns ready to blaze off at any instant, extra
look-outs are posted, and there are officers and men in the control
positions. The ship's company is usually organised into three watches
at night, which take turns in relieving one another every four hours.

After sunrise the increased visibility gives ample warning of any
possible attack. The messdecks, guns, and ship generally are cleaned
before breakfast, while the forenoon soon passes in perfecting the
guns' crews and controls, and in physical drill. After dinner at
noon and a smoke, everyone follows the old custom of the sea, and has
a caulk (a sleep)--a custom originated in the days of sailing ships
who were at sea for long periods at a time, and watch and watch (i.e.
one watch on and one off) had to be maintained both day and night.
The men lie about the decks, too tired to feel the want of either
mattresses or pillows. The first dog watch (4-6 P.M.) is usually
given up to recreation until sunset, when it is time to go to night
defence stations. Day in and day out, this programme is seldom varied
except to stop and examine a merchant ship now and again.

Every ship met with on the high seas is boarded for the examination
of its passengers and cargo, an undertaking often attended by some
difficulty on a dark night. On approaching, it is customary to
signal the ship to stop; if this is not obeyed at once, a blank
round is fired as a warning; should this be disregarded a shotted
round is fired across her bows, but it is seldom necessary to resort
to this measure. At night these excursions have a strange, unreal
effect, and our boarding officer used to say that when climbing up a
merchantman's side in rough weather he felt like some character in
a pirate story. Getting out of a boat, as it is tossing alongside,
on to a rope ladder, is by no means an easy job, especially if the
officer is inclined to be portly. The searchlight, too, turned full
on to the ship, blinding the scared passengers who come tumbling
up, frequently imagining they have been torpedoed, adds to the
mysterious effect produced, whilst the sudden appearance of the
boarding officer in his night kit suggests a visit from Father
Neptune. But any idea of comedy is soon shattered by the grumpy
voice of the captain who has been turned out from his beauty sleep,
or by the vehement objections of a lady or her husband to their
cabin being searched. As a matter of fact, we were always met with
the most unfailing courtesy, and the boat's crew was often loaded
with presents of cigarettes or even chocolates, besides parcels of
newspapers hastily made up and thrown down at the last moment.

Off a neutral coast the food problem is an everlasting difficulty,
and as soon as the canteen runs out and tinned stores cannot be
replenished, the menu resolves itself into a more or less fixed item
of salt beef ("salt horse") or salt pork with pea soup. The old
saying, "Feed the brute, if a man is to be kept happy," has proved
itself true, but is one which at sea is often extraordinarily hard
to follow, especially when it is impossible to get such luxuries as
eggs, potatoes, and fresh meat. If flour runs out, the ship's biscuit
("hard tack"), which often requires a heavy blow to break it, forms
but a poor substitute for bread; although it is quite good eating,
a little goes a long way. The joy with which the advent of an armed
liner is heralded by the officers cannot well be exaggerated; the
stewards from all ships lose no time in trying to get all they can,
and the memory of the first excellent meal is not easily forgotten.

The ever-recurring delight of coaling ship is looked forward to
directly anchorage is reached. Coal-dust then penetrates everywhere,
even to the food, and after a couple of hours it seems impossible
for the ship ever to be clean again. Nearly every officer and man on
board, including the chaplain and paymasters, join in the work, which
continues day and night, as a rule, until finished. If this takes
more than twenty-four hours there is the awful trial of sleeping,
clothes and all, covered in grime, for hammocks have to be foregone,
else they would be quite unfit for further use. The men wear any
clothes they like. In the tropics it is a warm job working in the
holds, and clothes are somewhat scanty. A very popular article is
a bashed-in bowler hat, frequently worn with white shorts, and a
football jersey! There is, generally, a wag amongst the men who keeps
them cheery and happy, even during a tropical rain storm. His powers
of mimicking, often ranging from politicians to gunnery instructors,
bring forth rounds of applause, and all the time he'll dig out like a

The sailor is a cheery bird, and seldom lets an opportunity of
amusement escape. On one occasion, when lying at anchor in the
tropics, someone suggested fishing; after the first fish had been
caught many rods and lines were soon going. A would-be wit enlivened
matters by tying an empty soda-water bottle on to a rather excitable
man's line while he was away, which met with great success on the
owner crying out, "I've got a real big 'un here" as he carefully
played it to the delight of everyone. Shark fishing was a favourite
sport, and three were caught and landed in one afternoon; one of them
had three small sharks inside it.

The band (very few ships had the good fortune to possess one) plays
from 4.30 to 5.30 P.M., when Jack disports himself in Mazurkas
and d'Alberts, and dances uncommonly well before a very critical
audience. Some men are always busy at their sewing machines when off
duty, making clothes for their messmates; this they call "jewing";
others are barbers, or bootmakers, and they make quite a good
thing out of it. Now that masts and sails are things of the past,
substitutes in the way of exercise are very necessary, particularly
when living on salt food. Boxing is greatly encouraged, and if
competitions are organised, men go into strict training and the
greatest keenness prevails. A canvas salt-water bath is usually
rigged, and is in constant demand with the younger men. The officers
congregate in flannels on the quarter-deck playing quoits, deck
tennis, or cricket; some go in for doing Swedish exercises, Müller,
or club swinging, and, to finish up with, a party is formed to run
round the decks.

The Admiralty are extraordinarily good about dispatching mails to our
ships, but sudden and unexpected movements often make it impossible
to receive them with any regularity. When war broke out everyone
wondered how their folk at home would manage, whether money and food
would be easily obtainable. In our own case we were moved from our
original sphere of operations, and did not get our first mail till
October 19th, over eleven weeks after leaving England, and many
other ships may have fared even worse. Again, our Christmas mail of
1914 was not received till six months afterwards, having followed
us to the Falkland Islands, then back home, out again round the
Cape of Good Hope, finally arriving at the Dardanelles. On this
occasion one of the men had a pound of mutton and a plum pudding
sent him by his wife; it can easily be imagined with what delight he
welcomed these delicacies, which had been through the tropics several
times, as did those others whose parcels were anywhere near his in
the mail bag. It may appear a paltry thing to those who get their
daily post regularly, but the arrival of a mail at sea is a very
real joy, even to those who get but few letters. The newspapers are
eagerly devoured, and events, whose bare occurrence may have only
become known through meagre wireless communiqués, are at length made

Darkening ship at sunset is uncomfortable, more particularly in the
tropics, when the heat on the messdecks becomes unbearable from lack
of air. However, this is now much improved by supplying wind-scoops
for the scuttles, fitted with baffles to prevent the light from
showing outboard. Everyone sleeps on deck who can, risking the
pleasures of being trodden upon in the dark, or of being drenched by
a sudden tropical shower, when the scrum of men hastily snatching
up their hammocks and running for the hatches equals that of any
crowd at a football match. On moonless nights little diversions are
constantly occurring. A certain officer, perfectly sober, on one
occasion walked over the edge of the boat-deck into space, and then
was surprised to find that he was hurt.

The hardships and anxieties of the life are probably overrated by
people ashore. The very routine helps to make the sailor accustomed
to the strange and unnatural conditions, nearly all of which have
their humorous side. As is the way of the world, we on the coast of
South America all envied those in the Grand Fleet at this time, in
modern ships fitted with refrigerating rooms and plenty of good fresh
food; and they, no doubt, willingly would have changed places with
us, being sick to death of the uneventful life, cold, rough weather,
and constant submarine strain from which we were fortunately immune.
Events took such a shape a few months later that those of us who were
fortunate enough to be in the battle of the Falkland Islands would
not have been elsewhere for all the world.



      "When, with a roar that seemed to buffet the heavens
      And rip the heart of the sea out, one red flame
      Blackened with fragments, the great galleon burst
      Asunder! All the startled waves were strewn
      With wreckage; and Drake laughed: 'My lads, we have diced
      With death to-day, and won!'"

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

It has already been mentioned that the _Carmania_ was ordered to
search the Brazilian island of Trinidad (not to be confused with the
British Island of the same name), which lies in the South Atlantic
about 600 miles to the eastward of South America, and in about the
same latitude as Rio de Janeiro. It was uninhabited at this time, and
seemed a likely place for the Germans to use as a temporary coaling
base; they have never had any compunction about breaking the laws of
neutrality if it suited their purpose.

The following narrative is taken from the official report,
supplemented by an account written by the author two days after
the action from a description given him by the officers of H.M.S.

Land was sighted on the morning of September 14th, 1914. A moderate
breeze was blowing from the north-east, but it was a lovely day, with
a clear sky and the sun shining. Shortly after 11 A.M. the masts of a
vessel were observed, and on approaching nearer the _Carmania_ made
out three steamers, apparently at anchor in a small bay that lies to
the south-west of the island. One of these was a large liner, but the
others were clearly colliers and had their derricks topped; they were
probably working when they sighted us, and they immediately separated
and made off in different directions before the whole of their hulls
could be distinguished.

The large vessel was apparently a liner about equal in size,[4]
having two funnels which were painted to resemble those of a Union
Castle liner. After running away for a while, the larger steamer,
which turned out to be the _Cap Trafalgar_ (though this was not known
for certain till weeks afterwards), altered course to starboard and
headed more in our direction. She was then steering about south at
what appeared to be full speed, while the _Carmania_ was steaming 16
knots on a sou'-westerly course.

There could no longer be any doubt that she meant to fight, and the
duel now ensued that has been so happily described by a gifted naval
writer, the late Fred T. Jane, as "the Battle of the Haystacks."
To my idea, it appears almost a replica of the frigate actions of
bygone days, and will probably go down in history as a parallel to
the engagement fought between the _Chesapeake_ and _Shannon_. For
gallantry, pluck and determination it certainly bears comparison with
many of these actions of the past.

About noon she fired a single shot across the enemy's bows at a
range of 8,500 yards, whereupon he immediately opened fire from his
after-gun on the starboard side. This was quickly followed on both
sides by salvoes (all guns firing nearly simultaneously as soon as
their sights came on to the target), so matters at once became lively.

Curiously enough, the enemy's first few shots fell short, ricocheting
over, and then, as the range decreased, they went clean over the
hull, in consequence of which our rigging, masts, funnels, derricks,
and ventilators all suffered, though the ship's side near the
waterline--the principal anxiety--was so far intact. Some of the
_Carmania's_ first shots, which were fired at a range of 7,500
yards, were seen to take effect, and she continued to score hits
afterwards with moderate frequency. The port battery was engaging
his starboard guns at this period, so that he was on her port hand,
and a reference to the plan will show that she was ahead on bearing.
The range was rapidly decreasing since they were both on converging
courses, but unfortunately the German ship had the speed of her, for
the Cunarder could only do 16 knots, due largely to a lack of vacuum
in the condensers. As far as could be judged the _Cap Trafalgar_ was
steaming between 17 and 18 knots. (_See_ Diagram, p. 39.)

At 4,500 yards, two of our broadsides were seen to hit all along the
waterline. As the range decreased to 4,000 yards the shot from the
enemy's pom-poms (machine guns), fired with great rapidity, began
to fall like hail on and all round the ship; this induced Captain
Grant to alter course away with promptitude, thus opening out
the range and bringing the starboard battery into play. The port
4.7-inch guns--they were all over twenty years old--were by this time
wellnigh red-hot. That the enemy did not apprehend this manœuvre was
demonstrated by his erratic fire at this moment, when the Britisher
was enabled to bring five guns into action to his four through being
able to use both the stern guns. It was now that the German suffered
most heavily, the havoc wrought in such a short time being very
noticeable. He then turned away, which brought the two ships nearly
stern on to one another; two of his steam pipes were cut by shell,
the steam rising into the sky, he was well on fire forward, and had a
list to starboard.

[Illustration: (Diagram of action between 'CARMANIA' and 'CAP

  The Mappa Co. Ltd London

One of his shells, however, had passed through the captain's cabin
under the fore bridge, and although it did not burst it started a
fire, which rapidly became worse; unhappily no water was available to
put it out, for the fire main was shot through, while the chemical
fire extinguishers proved of little use. All water had to be carried
by hand, but luckily the fire was prevented from spreading over the
ship by a steel bulkhead, together with an ordinary fire-proof swing
door, which was afterwards found to be all charred on one side.
Nevertheless it got a firm hold of the deck above, which broke into
flame, so the fore-bridge had to be abandoned. The ship had now to
be steered from the stern, and all orders had to be shouted down by
megaphone both to the engine rooms and to this new steering position
in the bowels of the ship, which was connected up and in operation in
fifty-seven seconds! To reduce the effect of the fire the vessel was
kept before the wind, which necessitated turning right round again,
so that the fight resolved itself into a chase.

The action was continued by the gun-layers, the fire-control position
being untenable due to the fire, so each gun had to be worked and
fired independently under the direction of its own officer. Among
the ammunition supply parties there had been several casualties and
the officers, finding it impossible to "spot" the fall of the shell,
owing to the flashes from the enemy's guns obscuring their view from
so low an elevation, lent a hand in carrying the ammunition from the
hoists to the guns. In these big liners the upper deck, where the
guns are mounted, is approximately 70 feet above the holds, whence
the ammunition has to be hoisted and then carried by hand to the
guns--a particularly arduous task.

Crossing, as it were, the enemy was at this time well on the
starboard bow, but firing was continued until the distance was over
9,000 yards, the maximum range of the _Carmania's_ guns. Owing to
his superior speed and a slight divergence between the courses, the
distance was gradually increasing all the time, and at 1.30 he was
out of range. His list had now visibly increased, and his speed began
to diminish, probably on account of the inrush of water through his
coaling ports. It was surmised that there had not been sufficient
time to secure these properly, for he had evidently been coaling at
the time she arrived upon the scene.

Towards the end the _Cap Trafalgar's_ fire had begun to slacken,
though one of her guns continued to fire to the last, in spite of
the fact that she was out of range. It became patent that she
was doomed, and her every movement was eagerly watched through
field-glasses for some minutes by those not occupied in quenching
the fire. Suddenly the great vessel heeled right over; her funnels
being almost parallel to the surface of the sea, looked just like two
gigantic cannon as they pointed towards the _Carmania_; an instant
later she went down by the bows, the stern remaining poised in
mid-air for a few seconds, and then she abruptly disappeared out of
sight at 1.50 P.M., the duel having lasted an hour and forty minutes.

There were no two opinions about the good fight she had put up, and
all were loud in their praise of the gallant conduct of the Germans.

One of the enemy's colliers was observed approaching this scene of
desolation in order to pick up survivors, some of whom had got away
from the sinking ship in her boats. The collier had been flying the
United States ensign, evidently as a ruse, in the hope that the
_Carmania_ might be induced to let her pass without stopping her
for examination. It was, however, impossible to interfere with her
owing to the fire that was still raging in the fore part of the ship.
This kept our men at work trying to get it under, and necessitated
keeping the ship running before the wind, the direction of which did
not permit of approaching the spot in order to attempt to pick up

Smoke was now seen away to the northward, and the signalman reported
that he thought he could make out the funnels of a cruiser. As the
_Cap Trafalgar_, before sinking, had been in wireless communication
with some German vessel, it was apprehended that one might be
coming to her assistance. As the _Carmania_ was totally unfit for
further action, it was deemed advisable to avoid the risk of another
engagement, so she steamed off at full speed in a southerly direction.

As soon as the collier and all that remained of the wreckage of the
_Cap Trafalgar_ was lost to view the gallant Cunarder was turned
to the north-westward in the direction of the anchorage. She was
unseaworthy, nearly all her navigational instruments and all the
communications to the engines were destroyed, making the steering and
navigation of the ship difficult and uncertain. When wireless touch
was established, the _Cornwall_ was called up and asked to meet and
escort her in. But as she had only just started coaling she asked the
_Bristol_ to take her place. The next day the _Bristol_, which was in
the vicinity, took the _Carmania_ along until relieved the same night
by the _Cornwall_, which escorted her on to the base, where temporary
repairs were effected.

One of the enemy's shells was found to have passed through three
thicknesses of steel plating without exploding, but in spite of this
it set fire to some bedding which caused the conflagration under
the fore bridge. Where projectiles had struck solid iron, such as
a winch, splinters of the latter were to be seen scattered in all
directions. The ship was hit seventy-nine times, causing no fewer
than 304 holes.

There were 38 casualties. Five men were killed outright, 4
subsequently died from wounds, 5 were seriously wounded and 22
wounded--most of the latter were only slightly injured. All the
casualties occurred on deck, chiefly among the guns' crews and
ammunition supply parties. No one below was touched, but a third of
those employed on deck were hit.

The following remarks may be of interest, and are taken from the
author's letters, written on September 16th, after having been shown
over the _Carmania_:

"When I went on board this morning, I was greatly struck by the few
fatal casualties considering the number of holes here, there, and
everywhere. Not a single part of the upper deck could be crossed
without finding holes. A remarkable fact was that only one officer,
Lieutenant Murray, R.N.R., was hurt or damaged in any way, although
the officers were in the most exposed positions, and the enemy's
point of aim appeared to be the fore bridge.

"They had only three active service ratings on board; some of the
gunlayers were old men, pensioners from the Navy.

"One of the senior officers told me that the first few rounds made
him feel 'a bit dickey,' but that after that he took no notice of the
bigger shells, though, curiously enough, he thoroughly objected to
the smaller pom-poms which were 'most irritating.' He added that the
men fought magnificently, and that the firemen worked 'like hell.' As
flames and smoke from the fire on deck descended to the stokeholds by
the ventilators instead of cool air, the states of things down below
may easily be imagined.

"One chronometer was found to be going in spite of the wooden box
which contained it having been burnt.

"The deeds of heroism were many.

"I liked the story of the little bugler boy, who had no more to
do once the action had commenced, so he stood by one of the guns
refusing to go under cover. As the gun fired he shouted: 'That's one
for the blighters!' And again: 'There's another for the beggars--go
it!' smacking the gunshield the while with his hand.

"Again one of the gunlayers, who lost his hand and also one leg
during the engagement, insisted upon being held up when the German
ship sank, so as to be able to cheer. I talked to him, and he waggled
his stump at me quite cheerily and said, 'It was well worth losing an
arm for.'

"It is good to feel that the spirit of our forefathers is still
active in time of need."



                                "Then let him roll
      His galleons round the little Golden Hynde,
      Bring her to bay, if he can, on the high seas,
      Ring us about with thousands, we'll not yield,
      I and my Golden Hynde, we will go down,
      With flag still flying on the last stump left us
      And all my cannon spitting the fires
      Of everlasting scorn into his face."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

The wanderings of the German squadron in the Pacific have been
briefly traced as far as Easter Island, where it arrived on October
12th, 1914, and found the _Dresden_. The _Leipzig_, which had been
chased from pillar to post by British and Japanese cruisers, and
succeeded in eluding them, joined up shortly after to the relief of
the German Admiral.

The contractor at Easter Island, an Englishman named Edwards,
who supplied the Germans with fresh meat and vegetables, was a
ranch-owner, and had no idea that war had even been declared. One
of his men, in taking off provisions to the ships, discovered this
amazing fact, which had carefully been kept secret, and informed
his master. The account was not settled in cash, but by a bill made
payable at Valparaiso. The German squadron sailed for Mas-a-Fuera
a week later, so the ranch-owner took the earliest opportunity of
sending in his bill to Valparaiso, where it was duly honoured, vastly
to his astonishment and relief.

For the reasons already adduced, it seemed almost certain that
Admiral von Spee would make his way round South America. That there
was a possibility of his descending upon Vancouver and attacking
the naval dockyard of Esquimalt is acknowledged, but it was so
remote as to be scarcely worthy of serious consideration. The three
Japanese cruisers, _Idzuma_, _Hizen_, and _Asama_, were understood
to be in the eastern Pacific at this time, and this was probably
known to the German Admiral. The risk, too, that he must inevitably
run in attacking a locality known to possess submarines was quite
unjustifiable; besides, he had little to gain and everything to lose
through the delay that must ensue from adopting such a policy.

The vessels engaged in the action off Coronel, with their armament,
etc., were:[5]

    _Names_          _Tonnage_     _Armament_    _Speed_    _Completion_

  _Good Hope_         14,100         2--9.2"       23.5         1902
  _Monmouth_           9,800        14--6"         23.3         1903
  _Glasgow_            4,800         2--6"         25.8         1910
  _Otranto_ (armed    12,000         8--4.7"       18           1909
    liner)             gross

      Speed of squadron 18 knots.

    _Names_          _Tonnage_     _Armament_    _Speed_     _Completion_

  _Scharnhorst_       11,420         8--8.2"       22.5         1908
  _Gneisenau_         11,420         8--8.2"       23.8         1908
  _Leipzig_            3,200        10--4.1"       23           1906
  _Dresden_            3,544        12--4.1"       27           1908
  _Nürnberg_           3,396        10--4.1"       23.5         1908
      Speed of squadron 22.5 knots.

It will be noticed that our two armoured cruisers were respectively
six and five years older than the Germans'. Our armament was much
inferior in size, number, and quality on account of the later
designs of the enemy's artillery. The range of the German 4.1-inch
guns was _nearly equal to that of our 6-inch guns_. But perhaps the
greatest point in favour of the enemy was the fact that Cradock's
ships, with the exception of the _Glasgow_, were only commissioned
at the outbreak of war, and had had such continuous steaming that
no really good opportunity for gunnery practices or for testing the
organisation thoroughly had been possible, whilst von Spee's had
been in commission for over two years and had highly trained crews,
accustomed to their ships.

The following account has been compiled from personal information
received from officers who took part, from letters that have appeared
in the Press, from a translation that has been published of Admiral
von Spee's official report, and from the official report made by
Captain Luce of the _Glasgow_.

Admiral Cradock, as we have seen, joined the remainder of his little
squadron with the exception of the _Canopus_ off the coast of Chile
on October 29th. The latter was following at her best speed. The
squadron proceeded northwards, whilst the _Glasgow_ was detached to
Coronel to send telegrams, a rendezvous being fixed for her to rejoin
at 1 P.M. on November 1st.

No authentic news of the movements of the Germans was available at
this time; in fact, the last time that von Spee's squadron had been
definitely heard of was when it appeared off Papeete and bombarded
the town toward the end of September. That the enemy might be
encountered at any moment was of course fully realised, but it was
hoped that either the _Dresden_ and _Leipzig_ or the main squadron
might be brought to action separately, before they were able to
join forces. Time was everything if this was to be brought about,
so Admiral Cradock pushed on without delay. The anxiety to obtain
news of a reliable character may be imagined, but only the vaguest
of rumours, one contradicting the other, were forthcoming. Reports
showed that the German merchant shipping in the neighbourhood were
exhibiting unwonted signs of energy in loading coal and stores,
but this gave no certain indication of the proximity of the entire

Rejoining the British squadron at sea on November 1st, the _Glasgow_
communicated with the _Good Hope_. Our ships had recently been
hearing Telefunken[6] signals on their wireless, which was proof
that one or more enemy warships were close at hand. About 2 P.M.,
therefore, the Admiral signalled the squadron to spread on a line
bearing N.E. by E. from the _Good Hope_, which steered N.W. by N. at
10 knots. Ships were ordered to open to a distance of fifteen miles
apart at a speed of 15 knots, the _Monmouth_ being nearest to the
flagship, the _Otranto_ next, and then the _Glasgow_, which was thus
nearest the coast.

[Illustration: DIAGRAM I. (Enemy sighted) 4.20 p.m.]

There was not sufficient time to execute this manœuvre, and when
smoke was suddenly sighted at 4.20 P.M. to the eastward of the
_Otranto_ and _Glasgow_, these two ships were still close together
and about four miles from the _Monmouth_. The _Glasgow_ went ahead to
investigate and made out three German warships, which at once turned
towards her. The Admiral was over twenty miles, distant and out of
sight, and had to be informed as soon as possible, so the _Glasgow_
returned at full speed, warning him by wireless, which the Germans
endeavoured to jam, that the enemy was in sight.

The squadron reformed at full speed on the flagship, _who had altered
course to the southward_, and by 5.47 P.M. had got into single
line-ahead in the order: _Good Hope_, _Monmouth_, _Glasgow_, and
_Otranto_. The enemy, in similar formation, was about twelve miles

For the better understanding of the movements which follow, it may be
stated that the ideal of a naval artillerist is a good target--that
is, a clear and well defined object which is plainly visible through
the telescopic gunsights; the wind in the right direction, relative
to the engaged side, so that smoke does not blow across the guns,
and no sudden alterations of course, to throw out calculations.
The tactics of a modern naval action are in a large measure based
on these ideals, at any rate according to the view of the gunnery

It is evident that it was Admiral Cradock's intention to close in
and force action at short range as quickly as possible, in order
that the enemy might be handicapped by the rays of the lowering sun,
which would have been behind our ships, rendering them a very poor
target for the Germans as the squadrons drew abeam of one another.
He therefore altered course inwards towards the enemy, but von Spee
was either too wary or too wise, for he says in his report that he
turned away to a southerly course after 5.35, thus declining action,
which the superior speed of his squadron enabled him to do at his
pleasure. The wind was south (right ahead), and it was blowing very
fresh, so that a heavy head sea was encountered, which made all
ships--especially the light-cruisers--pitch and roll considerably. It
seems very doubtful whether the _Good Hope_ and _Monmouth_ were able
to use their main deck guns, and it is certain that they could not
have been of any value. This would mean that these two ships could
only fire two 9.2-inch and ten 6-inch guns on the broadside between
them, instead of their whole armament of two 9.2-inch and seventeen
6-inch guns.

[Illustration: DIAGRAM II 6.40 p.m.]

There was little daylight left when Admiral Cradock tried to close
the Germans, hoping that they would accept his challenge in view of
their superior strength.

At 6.18 Admiral Cradock increased speed to 17 knots, making a
wireless message to the _Canopus_, "I am about to attack enemy now."
Both squadrons were now on parallel courses approximately, steering
south, and about 7½ miles apart. A second light cruiser joined the
German line about this period; according to von Spee's report the
_Scharnhorst_ was leading, followed by the _Gneisenau_, _Leipzig_,
and _Dresden_.

As the sun sank below the horizon (about 6.50 P.M.) the conditions
of light became reversed to our complete disadvantage; our ships
were now lit up by the glow of the sunset, the enemy being gradually
enshrouded in a misty haze as the light waned. Admiral Cradock's
last hope of averting defeat must have vanished as he watched the
enemy turning away; at the best he could only expect to damage and
thus delay the enemy, while it was impossible to withdraw. He had no
choice but to hold on and do his best, trusting in Providence to aid
him. In judging what follows it should be kept in mind that in the
declining light even the outlines of the enemy's ships rapidly became
obliterated, making it quite impossible to see the fall of our shots
in order to correct the range on the gunsights; on the other hand,
our ships showed up sharply against the western horizon and still
provided good targets for the German gunners. Von Spee in his report
says his "guns' crews on the middle decks were never able to see the
sterns of their opponents, and only occasionally their bows." This
certainly implies that the upper deck gunners could see quite well,
whilst we have information from Captain Luce's report that our ships
were unable to see the enemy early in the action, and were firing at
the flashes of his guns.

Accordingly, as soon as the sun disappeared, von Spee lost no time
in approaching our squadron, and opened fire at 7.4 at a range of
12,000 yards. Our ships at once followed suit with the exception
of the _Otranto_, whose old guns did not admit of her competing
against men-of-war at this distance. The German Admiral apparently
endeavoured to maintain this range, so as to reap the full advantage
of his newer and heavier armament, for the two 9.2-inch guns in the
_Good Hope_ were the only ones in the whole of our squadron that
were effective at this distance with the possible exception of the
two modern 6-inch guns in the _Glasgow_. Von Spee had, of course,
calculated this out, and took care not to close until our armoured
cruisers were _hors de combat_.

The Germans soon found the range, their fire proving very accurate,
which was to be expected in view of the reputation of the
_Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_ for good shooting--the former had
won the gold medal for the best average. These armoured cruisers
concentrated their fire entirely on our two leading ships, doing
considerable execution. In addition, they had a great stroke of luck,
for in the first ten minutes of the engagement a shell struck the
fore turret of the _Good Hope_, putting that 9.2-inch out of action.
The _Monmouth_ was apparently hit several times in rapid succession,
for she was forced to haul out of the line to the westward, and her
forecastle was seen to be burning furiously, but she continued to
return the enemy's fire valiantly. This manœuvre caused her to drop
astern, and compelled the _Glasgow_, who now followed on after the
_Good Hope_, to ease speed to avoid getting into the zone of fire
intended for the _Monmouth_.

It was now growing dark, but this did not deter both squadrons from
continuing to blaze away as hard as they could; in fact, the fight
was at its height; the German projectiles were falling all round
and about our ships, causing several fires which lit them up with a
ghostly hue. The heavy artillery of the enemy was doing great damage,
and it was evident that both the _Good Hope_ and _Monmouth_ were in
a bad way; the former sheered over unsteadily towards the Germans,
returning their fire spasmodically, whilst the latter had a slight
list and from her erratic movements gave the impression that her
steering arrangements had been damaged. The results of our shooting
could not be distinguished with accuracy, though von Spee mentions
that the _Scharnhorst_ found a 6-inch shell in one of her storerooms,
which had penetrated the side and caused a deal of havoc below but
did not burst, and also that one funnel was hit. The _Gneisenau_ had
two men wounded, and sustained slight damage.

At 7.50 P.M. a sight of the most appalling splendour arrested
everyone, as if spellbound, in his tussle with death. An enormous
sheet of flame suddenly burst from the _Good Hope_, lighting up the
whole heavens for miles around. This was accompanied by the noise
of a terrific explosion, which hurled up wreckage and sparks at
least a couple of hundred feet in the air from her after funnels. A
lucky shot had penetrated one of her magazines. "It reminded me of
Vesuvius in eruption," said a seaman in describing this spectacle.
It was now pitch dark, making it impossible for the opposing vessels
to distinguish one another. The _Good Hope_ was never heard to fire
her guns again, and could not have long survived such a terrible
explosion, though no one saw her founder.

The moon had risen about 6.30 P.M. and was now well up, but it was
too overcast to see much. According to von Spee the squadrons had
closed in to about 5,400 yards, which caused him to sheer off,
fearing torpedo attack. It seems certain that although firing was
continued it could not have been effective, for three minutes
after the _Good Hope_ blew up the Germans ceased fire altogether.
Shortly afterwards von Spee ordered the _Leipzig_, _Dresden_, and
_Nürnberg_--the last-named having joined the squadron during the
action--to make a torpedo attack.

The _Monmouth_ ceased firing just before the explosion on board the
_Good Hope_, and was then steering roughly N.W. It was clear she was
on her last legs, as her list had increased and she was down by the
bows. She now suddenly altered course to the N.E. in the direction
of the oncoming enemy. Captain Luce was senior naval officer, being
senior to Captain Brandt, of the _Monmouth_. He saw the Germans
approaching and signalled the _Monmouth_ at 8.30, "Enemy following
us," but received no reply. Clearly there was no alternative left
him but to save his ship, if he was not to make a needless sacrifice
of his men, as it was obvious that he could be of no further
assistance to his doomed consort. In addition, it was essential that
the _Canopus_ should be warned in time to avert a further calamity,
a task not so simple as it sounds, for the Germans were jamming
our wireless messages. It is said that when last seen the gallant
_Monmouth_ turned and made straight for the enemy in a heroic attempt
to ram one of their ships. Von Spee reports that the _Nürnberg_ sank
the _Monmouth_ at 9.28 P.M. by bombardment at point-blank range; this
accounts for the seventy-five flashes of gunfire as well as the play
of the beams of a search-light, which were observed by the _Glasgow_
after leaving the scene of action. It must have been brutal work.

Thus perished Admiral Cradock together with 1,600 gallant officers
and men. In fairness to the Germans it should be stated that our own
officers considered it too rough for boats to be lowered with any

The _Glasgow_ had been subjected to the combined fire of the
_Leipzig_ and _Dresden_, whose gunnery was fortunately not very
effective owing to the long range maintained between the two
squadrons before the light failed. That she had withstood this
combined onslaught for fifty-two minutes (von Spee's report) was
remarkable, but that she had suffered no material damage was little
short of a miracle. Her casualties amounted to four men slightly
wounded. She was hit five times, on or near the water line, but not
in vital places. The protection afforded by the coal in her bunkers
saved her on three occasions, as otherwise in the nasty sea running
at the time she would have found herself in a very precarious
position. Of the remaining two hits, one penetrated the deck but did
not explode, while the other wrecked the captain's pantry and cabin.
There was one large hole, which luckily did not prevent her eluding
her pursuers at high speed by steering out to the W.N.W., and thence
in a wide circle to the southward to the Magellan Straits, finally
arriving at Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands.

At the outset of the engagement the _Good Hope_ made a signal down
the line to the _Otranto_, the only words received being, "Leaving
_Otranto_." The latter, therefore, hauled out to endeavour to get
this signal direct from the flagship, but as the _Good Hope_ had
been badly hit, nothing further was received. As projectiles were
falling all round her, and it was realised that the _Otranto_, being
a large ship, would be used by the enemy as a rangefinder to enable
him to calculate the distance of the _Glasgow_, she hauled out still
farther to upset the accuracy of his gun-fire. The enemy proceeded
to carry this method of ranging into effect; the first salvo passed
over the _Otranto's_ bridge, the second missed the bows by 50 yards,
the third fell 150 yards astern, while others which followed fell,
some over, some short. By this time she had worked out of the line
about 1,200 yards, so turned to the same course, as far as could be
judged, as the remainder of the squadron. She was now out of range.
The _Otranto_ ran the gauntlet of the enemy's most successfully,
since she emerged from this storm of shell quite unscathed, but it
must have been touch and go. Moreover--and hardest of all--she had to
submit to this treatment without being in a position to retaliate.
After the flagship blew up, nothing was seen of the _Monmouth_;
subsequently the _Glasgow_ was reported crossing her stern. Seeing
that she could be of no assistance, the _Otranto_ dodged her
opponents by straining full speed to the westward for 200 miles, and
thence to the southward. Rounding Cape Horn, she passed between
the Falklands and the mainland and arrived at Montevideo. Both she
and the _Glasgow_ must have accounted themselves most fortunate in
escaping safely from this unequal contest.

The _Canopus_, which had been steaming northward with two colliers,
intercepted a wireless message from the _Glasgow_ to the _Good Hope_
reporting the enemy in sight. She immediately increased to her full
speed, dispatching the colliers to Juan Fernandez, and proceeded
on her course northward in the hope that she would arrive in time
to engage the enemy. About 9 P.M. she received a signal from the
_Glasgow_ that it was feared the _Good Hope_ and _Monmouth_ had been
sunk, and that the squadron was scattered. Seeing the hopelessness of
continuing on her course, the _Canopus_ turned round, picked up her
colliers, and made for the Magellan Straits via Smyth's Channel, the
successful navigation of which reflects great credit, since she was
probably the first battleship ever to make use of it. By this means
she succeeded in reaching Port Stanley without molestation, although
the German ships were constantly in close proximity.

Admiral Cradock appears to have had definite orders to prevent the
enemy coming round to the east coast of America. The _Canopus_ was
only 120 miles away when he met the enemy. But had the Admiral
waited for her the Germans might have slipped past him during the
night, and, moreover, her slow speed would have seriously hampered
the mobility of his squadron. Speaking of Admiral Cradock, Sir Henry
Newbolt[7] says, "He had asked for reinforcements, and the Admiralty
had sent him what they thought sufficient. It was not for him to hold

The advantages of speed and modern guns of superior range were
perhaps the outstanding features of the Coronel action. It was not
the vain sacrifice which at first sight it might appear to be, as it
probably saved our ships operating on the east coast of South America
from a similar fate.

Admiral Cradock carried out unflinchingly his search for a force
which he knew would almost certainly be superior to his own. His
unhesitating acceptance of the action and the gallantry of the fight
uphold the finest traditions of the Royal Navy, and will always be
recalled by it with pride. Surely, before God and man, such deeds of
heroism go far to mitigate the infamy of war.

                          "At set of sun,
      Even as below the sea-line the broad disc
      Sank like a red-hot cannon-ball through surf
      Of seething molten lead, the _Santa Maria_,
      Uttering one cry that split the heart of heaven,
      Went down with all hands, roaring into the dark."

              ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).



      "And Drake growled, ...
                   ... 'So, lest they are not too slow
      To catch us, clear the decks. God, I would like
      To fight them!'"

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

Several disquieting wireless messages were received by the British
warships on the east coast of South America, giving garbled and
unreliable accounts of the Coronel action. It was not till November
5th that a statement which appeared to be fairly authoritative, in
spite of its German origin, was received from Valparaiso. It said
that the _Monmouth_ was sunk and that the _Good Hope_ had probably
shared her fate; no mention was made of the _Canopus_, _Glasgow_, or

The command in these waters now devolved upon Rear-Admiral Stoddart
(flying his flag in the _Carnarvon_), who was still busily engaged
in the search for the _Karlsruhe_. His ships had been operating
over a wide area extending from the neighbourhood of Rio de Janeiro
to the northward of St. Paul's Rocks and the Rocas, and thence to
the westward along the north coast of South America. This otherwise
fruitless search achieved one notable result in compelling the
_Karlsruhe_ to abandon her system of obtaining supplies through
German storeships coming from Pernambuco, as that port was kept
under rigid observation. She was thus forced to leave the trade
route between Great Britain and South America for longer periods in
order to meet her consort, the armed liner _Kronprinz Wilhelm_, who
now became a link between her and her sources of supply in Central
America. There was, in consequence, a marked falling off at this
period in the number of her captures.

Assuming that the worst had happened, and that the German squadron
was now on its way round to the east coast, it became imperative to
unite our remaining ships into one squadron as quickly as possible.
It was obvious that with the Australian and Japanese ships behind
them, the Germans could not afford to linger where they were;
moreover, they had learned at Valparaiso that we had no naval force
of any preponderance with which to oppose them. Flushed with their
recent victory, it seemed probable that if they were not much damaged
they would most likely hasten their movements in the hope of meeting
our ships before we had had time to unite or to gather reinforcements.

The German squadron would not be able to separate with any safety
once we had succeeded in joining together our scattered forces,
so that the damage they might do to our commerce would be thereby
reduced to a minimum.

For these reasons it will be seen that the River Plate was admirably
situated for the rendezvous of our ships that had escaped from
Coronel to the Falklands, and of the northern squadron. Again, it
was possible to coal there without infringing territorial rights,
as there is an excellent anchorage well outside the three mile limit
from the foreshore.

The following calculations, written on November 6th, 1914, were made
by the author:

"The German Admiral will expect us to get reinforcements out from
England, so that it seems probable that he will lose no time in
coming round to the east coast.

"He arrived at Valparaiso on November 3rd. Supposing he coals there
and leaves at earliest on November 4th, the distance from Valparaiso
to the Plate is roughly 2,600 miles, or nine days at 12 knots;
therefore, allowing one day for coaling _en route_, the earliest that
he could be off the Plate would be the 13th, more likely not before
November 15th."

The strategical aspect in this sphere of operations was completely
changed by the success of the German squadron off Cape Coronel, and
necessitated not only a complete change of plans, but also an entire
redistribution of our ships. These consisted of the _Carnarvon_,
_Cornwall_, _Bristol_, _Macedonia_, and _Edinburgh Castle_, also the
_Defence_ and _Orama_, who were near Montevideo, and the _Canopus_,
_Glasgow_, and _Otranto_.

Admiral Stoddart, therefore, decided to go south to Montevideo at
once in order to meet the remainder of our scattered ships. The
_Bristol_, _Macedonia_, and _Edinburgh Castle_ were left to continue
the search for the _Karlsruhe_, although as a matter of fact she had
blown up on November 4th. Colliers were sent down south to Montevideo
to be in readiness for our ships, and were ordered to sail at
twelve-hour intervals to diminish the chance of capture.

The _Carnarvon_ and _Cornwall_ left the base on November 6th, the
former calling at Rio de Janeiro on the way for telegrams. Arriving
at the Plate on the 10th, where we found the _Defence_ and _Orama_,
the Admiral immediately transferred his flag to the former ship,
which was the newest and most powerful of our cruisers. All ships
filled up with coal and awaited the arrival of the _Glasgow_ and
_Otranto_; meanwhile, patrols were constantly maintained at the mouth
of the river.

The following evening the _Glasgow_ arrived amidst congratulations
from us all; she had put in to the Falkland Islands to coal, in which
assistance was provided by volunteers from amongst the inhabitants.
After coaling, she was detached to Rio de Janeiro to go into dry
dock, so that the damage to her side might be properly repaired. The
same day the _Orama_, whilst patrolling, met and sank the German
storeship _Navarra_ which was set on fire by the Germans when escape
was seen to be impossible. We also got the cheering news that the
_Emden_ had been sunk and that the _Königsberg_ had been bottled up,
tidings which augured well for the future.

The Admiralty seem to have had a premonition that the Germans
intended to attack the Falklands for the _Canopus_, although on her
way north to Montevideo, was ordered back to the Falkland Islands in
order to fortify and arm the harbour of Port Stanley in co-operation
with the local volunteers, converting herself into a floating fort.

The possibility of our encountering and having to fight von Spee was
the subject uppermost in all minds at this time, and led to a great
deal of discussion. The outstanding feature in the situation was the
extraordinary lack of homogeneity of the composition of our squadron.
It consisted of three armoured cruisers of entirely different
classes, each carrying a different armament, one light cruiser and
four armed merchantmen. The latter could not, of course, be pitted
against warships even of the light-cruiser type, and therefore had to
be left out of the reckoning. Amongst the four fighting ships there
were four descriptions of guns, viz. two 9.2-inch, fourteen 7.5-inch,
twenty-two 6-inch, and ten 4-inch, while the German squadron had
only three descriptions, viz. sixteen 8.2-inch, twelve 5.9-inch,
and thirty-two 4.1-inch. A prominent question, therefore, was what
range we should endeavour to maintain during an action; the answer to
which was very varied, preference being given to ranges from 14,000
yards downwards. From the gunnery point of view the enemy undoubtedly
held an advantage, as not only was his squadron more homogeneous,
having only two classes of ships, but also the range of his guns was
greater. As regards speed, there was nothing to choose between the
two squadrons, who were evenly matched in this respect. Much would
depend upon whether he would choose to keep his squadron together
for the purpose of an action or to disperse them on reaching the
east coast. Opinions on this and on many other points were divided.
All were agreed, however, that we ought to give a good account of

The wildest reports about von Spee's movements were constantly
received from Chilean and other sources. Whilst at Montevideo rumours
were circulated that the German ships had been seen coming round Cape

The Admiralty now informed Admiral Stoddart that reinforcements were
being sent out from England at once; they had actually started just
after our arrival at the Plate. The secret of this news was well
kept, not an inkling leaking out at home or abroad--a fact which
contributed very largely to our subsequent victory. It was decided,
therefore, to return northwards in order to effect a junction with
the two battle-cruisers that were on their way out. The squadron
sailed on November 12th, spread out in line abreast, and put in some
useful exercises on the way. Arriving at the base five days later,
we found the _Kent_, which was expected as we had heard that she was
being sent out to reinforce us; she had brought a mail, which made
her doubly welcome. The _Bristol_ and _Edinburgh Castle_ rejoined,
but the latter was ordered off northwards on other service, and
sailed on November 19th, taking a mail for England. It was blazing
hot, but the next few days passed quickly enough in carrying out
gunnery practices, patrolling, and coaling ship, during which the
_Glasgow_ returned from Rio, spick and span.

Most of November was a time of some suspense for our ships, as we
were hourly expecting an encounter with the enemy, and it was with
mixed feelings that we learned of the nature of the reinforcements
that were coming out with such despatch. Our feelings of relief were
also tempered with regret at not having been afforded an opportunity
to prove our mettle. Further, there was an awful and terrible thought
that it might be considered necessary to leave one of us cruisers
behind to guard the base.

Most of our ships had had steam on their main engines incessantly
since war broke out, and a rest to let fires out so as to make
necessary adjustments was badly needed, but was quite impossible near
a neutral coast.

On November 26th our hearts were gladdened by the sight of the
_Invincible_, bearing the flag of Vice-Admiral Sturdee, and the
_Inflexible_; these two formidable-looking ships had come out from
England at a mean speed of over 18 knots for fifteen days. Truly a
fine performance!



The various possible courses open to Admiral Count von Spee, both
before and after Coronel, have already been discussed, but the
movements of his squadron have not been subjected to examination in
the light that they bear on the policy which he adopted, nor have the
results of that action been considered from his point of view.

The German squadron sailed from Mas-a-Fuera on October 27th, and
three days later arrived about noon at a position some fifty miles
to the westward of Valparaiso, where it remained for upwards of
twenty-four hours. On October 31st--the same day that the _Glasgow_
went into Coronel with telegrams and the day before that action
was fought--the squadron steamed off south, leaving the _Nürnberg_
to wait off Valparaiso for a few hours and probably to get
information of importance. The German Admiral undoubtedly went to the
neighbourhood of Valparaiso with the express intention of obtaining
news and was in communication with the shore, for he begins his
official report on the action fought off Coronel by saying that his
three light cruisers reached on November 1st a point about twenty
"sea miles from the Chilean coast, in order to attack a British
cruiser (_Glasgow_), which, according to trustworthy information, had
reached the locality on the previous evening."

It is, of course, impossible to know what were von Spee's intentions
at this moment; they can only be surmised from a general survey of
the situation and the means that he had of obtaining information. The
latter was acquired by an organised system, for there were German
agents in every South American port. It may be taken as certain that
any ship calling at or passing Punta Arenas (Magellan Straits) would
be reported to him, and that the names of the ships and certain of
their movements on the south-east coast would also be known to him.

Easter Island--which was von Spee's original base--is approximately
2,300 miles from Valparaiso, and therefore out of range of wireless
communication, although it is possible he might occasionally be able
to take in a message under favourable conditions. However, it is
known from an officer survivor of the _Gneisenau_ that on October
19th the German Admiral received a message--possibly through a German
supply ship--stating that a British Squadron consisting of "_Good
Hope_, _Monmouth_, and _Glasgow_ was to the south." Now we know that
this squadron was at Punta Arenas on September 28th, and leaving on
that date was employed searching inlets and bays round Tierra del
Fuego for some days. The _Good Hope_ then returned to the Falklands,
finally leaving them on October 22nd, whilst the others went on to
the coast of Chile and were there from October 11th onwards, making
use of a sequestered spot as a base. The _Glasgow_ was at Coronel on
October 14th and at Valparaiso the day following, so the fact of a
British Squadron being "south" was well known, though the information
did not reach von Spee till the 19th.

On receiving this news von Spee sailed immediately. He knew he was in
superior force to Cradock's squadron, and the presumption is that he
went over to prospect and, if possible, to force an action. He went
straight to Mas-a-Fuera, only remained two days to coal, and then on
to a position off Valparaiso to pick up further information.

Immediately on hearing that the _Glasgow_ was at Coronel on the 31st,
he proceeded south to cut her off, and, as was likely to be the case,
to meet Cradock. He must have judged that the rest of the squadron
could not be far behind the _Glasgow_. The probability was that he
received information of the _Good Hope_ passing through the Straits
about the 24th or 25th, and he might also have heard of the _Canopus_
doing so a day or two later, in which case he would have calculated
that the latter could scarcely be so far north by this time.

There is no indication that by this date von Spee had made up his
mind to quit the South Pacific. He had hardly had time to make his
arrangements for so doing, and there is no doubt that they were not
then completed.

Von Spee was at his full strength, having recently added the
_Dresden_ and _Leipzig_ to the squadron while at Easter Island, he
possessed the advantage of homogeneity, and his squadron was far more
modern. The result we know, our ships were out-gunned and completely
outclassed. Fate played right into the hands of von Spee on this

It was undoubtedly a severe blow to British prestige in these
parts, and the Germans in all the large towns were not slow in
making the most of this temporary success in order to advance their
own interests. The rumours that were circulated caused no little
perturbation amongst the neutral shipping agents, who feared that von
Spee would lose no time in attacking British trade, and that those
cargoes which were consigned to Great Britain would be in jeopardy.
Insurance rates rose with a bound, and it is said that the Germans
went about openly deriding the British and causing the most fantastic
articles to be inserted in the local Press. The exaggerated reports
that were published, both of the action and of its effects, certainly
lends colour to this source of information.

It will be interesting to consider what von Spee would have done if
he had missed Admiral Cradock and the action off Coronel had not
been fought. In view of his superior speed, von Spee would in all
probability have continued on his southerly course and rounded Cape
Horn, leaving Admiral Cradock behind him. There seem to be grounds
for supposing that he might go to the Cape of Good Hope, but the
campaign in German South West Africa could scarcely be said to be
progressing favourably for the Germans, and it is not unreasonable
to suppose he would have preferred to go north along the eastern
side of South America to harass our trade. It is legitimate to
suppose that in this case he would not have delayed to attack the
Falkland Islands, with Cradock's squadron on his heels and Stoddart's
ships converging on him from the north; in fact, it would have been
suicidal, for the wireless station there would have given our ships
warning of his approach, and the delay might have enabled our two
forces to unite. From Stoddart's squadron alone he had nothing to
fear, and most likely would have welcomed an opportunity of bringing
it to action. The presence of the _Defence_ at Montevideo would
certainly have been known to him at that time, and he would probably
have hoped to intercept her before she joined Cradock. Had all this
come to pass, the Germans might then have separated, and when it was
found that the theatre of operations in the South Atlantic became
too hot for them, they might have endeavoured to make their way home
after doing as much damage as possible to our commerce.

As events turned out, however, von Spee waited about at sea for a day
or two after the action, apparently in the hope of either hearing
news of the _Good Hope_ or finding her. Writing at sea on November
2nd, he says, in a letter that afterwards appeared in the German
Press: "If _Good Hope_ escaped, she must, in my opinion, make for
a Chilean port on account of her damages. To make sure of this, I
intend going to Valparaiso to-morrow with _Gneisenau_ and _Nürnberg_,
and to see whether _Good Hope_ could not be disarmed by the
Chileans." Writing under date of November 5th, he adds: "We arrived
at Valparaiso this morning.... The news of our victory had not yet
reached here, but spread very quickly." The squadron split up, it
seems, arriving at different dates at Mas-a-Fuera, which became the
temporary headquarters of the German squadron for the next fortnight.
Here all ships coaled in turn. Communication was maintained by
sending the German light cruisers into Valparaiso one after the other
to get the latest information. The _Leipzig_ was there somewhere
about November 13th. This would show a proper caution on his part,
as belligerent vessels cannot use neutral ports except at extended

At Valparaiso von Spee must have obtained information concerning the
movements of our squadron under Admiral Stoddart, who had then just
sailed north from Montevideo. He would also have probably been aware
of the presence of the Japanese squadron operating in the Northern

In order to make the position clear, it must be apprehended that
a squadron consisting of the British light cruiser _Newcastle_,
together with the Japanese cruiser _Idzuma_, and the small battleship
_Hizen_, was concentrated in the North Pacific. The battle-cruiser
_Australia_ left Suva, Fiji, on November 8th to strengthen this
squadron, so that it may be deduced that this was a direct result of
the Coronel action which took place just a week before. She joined
these ships on November 26th at Chamela Bay on the west coast of
Mexico. The object of this squadron was to prevent von Spee from
coming north, and to close on him should he remain on the western
coast of South America. Sailing southwards, these ships visited the
Galapagos Islands and then proceeded on their quest for the enemy,
the _Newcastle_ searching the Cocos Islands _en route_. When nearing
the coast of Colombia, the splendid news of the Falkland Islands
battle was received, after which these ships split up and separated.

In view of these various courses of action open to von Spee, the
reader will appreciate how our minds were occupied with the question
of his future movements. Would he, in the hope of adding further to
his laurels, attempt to repeat his success by going into the North
Pacific to engage the Allied squadron there, which might have been
inferior to him in strength? Or would he go south and follow up
his advantage in a direction where there was nothing to oppose him
for the moment, except the _Canopus_ and _Glasgow_? He could not
hope successfully to combat all the different squadrons looking for
him, nor, for that matter, did he wish to risk his ships, for there
were no others to replace them. It was not his rôle to adopt such
an offensive. He therefore chose to give the impression that he
was remaining off Chile, and then suddenly vanished into complete
oblivion. Leaving no trace of his movements, he was careful to
forgo using all wireless; and, having completed arrangements as to
future supplies, he determined to appear suddenly where he was least
expected. History repeats itself, and he evidently decided that the
boldest plan was what would be least anticipated, and therefore most
likely to be productive of success.

Taking another point of view, it was obviously to von Spee's
advantage to hasten round to the east coast of South America as
quickly as possible after the action off Coronel took place, and
thus to reap the full benefit of the success that he had already
gained. He could not possibly have shut his eyes to the fact that the
immediate following up of his victory was the most promising policy
for any scheme of operations in the South Atlantic. He would then
have been able to strike before reinforcements could come out from
England, which he must have been aware would be sent out to hunt him
down. Why, then, did he delay a whole month? On his own showing the
repairs necessary to render his ships fit for further service only
took a few days, and it would not take long to arrange for his future
supplies on the east coast of South America with all the German
shipping cooped up in this part of the world waiting to be put to
any useful purpose. Is it, therefore, unreasonable to suppose that
he waited in order to collect German reservists from Chile, either
to garrison the Falkland Islands once they had been captured, or
to take or escort them home to Germany? He knew that he was really
superior to the force under Admiral Stoddart, yet he delayed leaving
till November 26th, a period of nearly four weeks. The inference of
which is that he was not ready, and further that a seizure of the
Falkland Islands was deliberately contemplated and prepared for, and
was to be his first step. An additional possible explanation lies in
the deduction that he could not have estimated that he would have
defeated Cradock so completely, and therefore took time to consider
the altered situation before committing himself to a definite move,
hoping in the interval to get more information which might lead to
a further stroke of good fortune. The threat of the _Australia_ and
the Japanese squadron to the north was not sufficiently pronounced to
force him to hurry.

We have seen that it was almost out of the question for von Spee to
maintain his ships in the Northern Pacific, but the conditions were
entirely different on the west coast of South America. Here there
were a number of uninhabited anchorages where he could shelter, and
he had a large German population to help him on the coast of Chile.
In fact, he did maintain himself here until he knew that hostile
forces were concentrating and would move south to drive him out.
Meanwhile, he had effected repairs to his ships, and had completed
arrangements in advance for the supplies of his ships on the east
coast of South America. Thus the conclusion appeared to be that there
was no alternative open to von Spee but to leave the Pacific, where
he had already shot his bolt.

Whatever the true explanation of his policy may be, the movements
of his squadron point to his having been quite at a loss what to do
next. His position was so hazardous and uncertain, so full of future
difficulties, that he could not see his way clear for any length of
time in order to work out any concerted plan. He was a fugitive pure
and simple, and felt that whatever he did was in the nature of a

It was not till Cradock was defeated that he appears to have
formulated his plan for attacking the Falkland Islands. He then seems
to have been carried away by the effect that the temporary capture
of a British colony and the hoisting of the German flag would have
on our prestige throughout the world. He would have destroyed the
wireless station, seized the coal and provisions lying there, and
would then have had to abandon the colony to subsequent recapture.
Had he originally contemplated such a dramatic coup, he would never
have delayed a moment longer than was necessary.

Keeping well away from the usual trade routes, the German ships
sailed south, and on the way were lucky enough to meet the _North
Wales_, one of Cradock's colliers. They arrived at San Quintin Sound
on November 21st, coaled, and stayed five days. Thence von Spee kept
out for 200 miles from the land before turning south, and got into
very rough weather.

An officer in the _Gneisenau_ states:

"_November 27th_--Force of wind up to 12. Later the weather moderated
a little so that we could proceed at 8 knots.

"_November 29th_--Impossible to lay the tables. Broken up furniture
thrown overboard. All crockery was smashed. Impossible to be on deck.
Necessary to secure oneself with ropes. We are about off the entrance
to the Magellan Straits.

"_December 2nd_--Sighted two icebergs, appear to be 50 metres high.

"_December 3rd_--We are lying at the eastern exit of the Beagle
Channel close to Picton Island.

"_December 6th_--We are going to Port Stanley."

In judging von Spee's motives, it is as well to bear in mind that he
attained no success whatsoever after Coronel except for the capture
of two sailing ships and a collier. That our squadron under Admiral
Sturdee, having only arrived the day previously, met him on his
arrival off Port Stanley, was the turn of Fortune's wheel in our

As all the world now knows, the battle of Coronel, the greatest naval
disaster that had befallen our arms in the war, was to be avenged
five weeks afterwards, when the German squadron in its turn drank to
the dregs the bitter cup of despair.



[Illustration: _Plan of Action of H.M.S. "CORNWALL"_

  _December 8^{th} 1914._

  The Mappa Co. Ltd. London

[Illustration: _Plan of Action between the Battle Cruisers
"INVINCIBLE" & "INFLEXIBLE" and the German Armoured Cruisers

  _December 8^{th} 1914._

  The Mappa Co. Ltd. London



      "Into the golden West, across the broad
      Atlantic once again. 'For I will show,'
      Said Drake, 'that Englishmen henceforth will sail
      Old ocean where they will.'"

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

The two battle-cruisers looked very businesslike as they steamed up
to the anchorage; their trip out had taken off a good deal of paint,
and they presented something of the appearance of hardened warriors
returning from a spell in the trenches, as has been so well portrayed
by Captain Bruce Bairnsfather. To our joy they brought a small mail
only three weeks old.

No sooner had the rattle of their cables ceased than preparations for
coaling were seen to be in progress.

The same day, November 26th, the _Defence_ sailed for Cape Town via
St. Helena to join the flag of Rear-Admiral H. G. King-Hall. The
_Macedonia_ and _Otranto_ had been sent to Sierra Leone some time
previously to let out fires and examine boilers.

The British Squadron was now under the command of Vice-Admiral F.
C. D. Sturdee, who held the title of Commander-in-Chief, South
Atlantic and Pacific. The Admiral's plan of operations possessed the
distinctive feature of every good invention; it was extremely simple
when once understood. Roughly speaking, it was this. The squadron
was to sail south to the Falklands, spreading out to extreme visual
signalling distance and searching for the enemy's ships. All signals
were to be made by searchlight, and wireless was not to be used
unless it was absolutely necessary. The battle-cruisers were placed
in the centre of the squadron, comparatively close together, with the
double object of being able to concentrate quickly in any direction
and of keeping secret their presence in these waters. Orders were
subsequently given that, after coaling at the Falklands, the squadron
would leave on December 9th, "in order to get round the Horn before
the enemy comes East." The enemy was sure to be reported if he used
the Straits of Magellan; but it is believed that, to make doubly sure
of not missing him, the Admiral intended to divide our squadron. Some
of the cruisers would then have gone through the Straits, meeting him
with the battle-cruisers somewhere in the Pacific; by this means the
presence of the latter would not become known.

Sailing on November 28th, on a lovely calm morning, Admiral Sturdee
must have indeed felt a proud man; after years of labour in his
profession, he had his ambition realised by the command of a powerful
squadron in war with a definite task before him. It consisted of
_Invincible_ (flag), _Inflexible_, _Carnarvon_ (flag), _Cornwall_,
_Kent_, _Glasgow_, and _Bristol_. The _Macedonia_, now on her way
back from Sierra Leone, was to join us on the voyage south.

On December 1st a report was received that "the German fleet was 400
miles off Montevideo" the previous evening, but no one believed it.
The next day we left dinner hurriedly; a signal was received, "Alter
course together" to starboard 60 degrees. We altered and stood by for
action, but it only turned out to be a British vessel--a false alarm
which, however, was excellent practice. Information came through on
the 3rd that the German tender _Patagonia_ left Montevideo during the
night with stores for the German warships; therefore presumably they
were not far off.

We arrived off Port Stanley on the morning of December 7th, and were
piloted into harbour through a channel in the line of mines, which
had been hastily constructed from empty oil-drums, and laid across
the entrance by the _Canopus_. As there were only three colliers
here, the ships were ordered to coal in turn; the remainder, under
convoy of the _Orama_, were following us down from the base.

The Falkland Islands number about two hundred only two of which,
East and West Falkland, are of any size. The coast line of both
these islands is deeply indented and much resembles one of the
Outer Hebrides. Devoid of all trees, the dark brown and green
moors, relieved here and there by patches of granite quartz, look
uninviting, but abound in penguins hares, and sheep. Some of us,
being unable to coal ship, landed on the day of our arrival and shot
some hares and geese--a welcome change for the larder. It was the
breeding season, and the penguin camps or rookeries were a striking
sight; on approaching them hundreds would stand up and waddle forward
in a threatening attitude, making a terrible din in order to protect
their eggs. So numerous are they compared with the inhabitants that
the Governor is locally called the "King of the Penguins."

The little town of Port Stanley, the capital, lies on the south side
of the inner portion of a harbour on the east coast of East Falkland,
and consists of two streets of houses, almost all, except Government
House and the cathedral, constructed of timber and corrugated iron.
It is very much like one of the new small towns of Canada. The
principal fuel is peat, which may be seen stacked as in Ireland. The
population numbers about a thousand, and another thousand--mostly
farmers and shepherds of Scottish origin--live out on the moors of
the islands.

During the summer the temperature averages about 48° Fahr., and it is
nearly always blowing hard, raining, hailing, or snowing. Situated in
a cold current from the Antarctic, the temperature only falls eleven
degrees in the winter; as a result, scarcely any of the inhabitants
can swim, it being too cold to bathe. Owing to the absence of sun and
summer heat, wheat, oats, and English vegetables do not thrive, but
the colony is none the less remarkably healthy.


  The Mappa Co. Ltd. London

When the news of the Coronel disaster reached them, the islanders
were naturally much concerned for their safety. They had a volunteer
corps of a few hundred men, which took to training most assiduously
and quickly improved in efficiency. Every man was a good horseman
and proficient with the rifle, but the corps were not sufficiently
numerous to prevent a landing. A council of war was held by the
Governor, at which the position was fully discussed. It seemed
only too probable that the Germans would attack the Islands, and
arrangements were made to send away from Stanley the few women and
children. Stores of provisions were secreted within easy reach of the
town, and the public money, official documents, confidential books,
and valuables were either removed to a place of safety or buried.

This was the position when the _Canopus_ and the _Glasgow_ arrived on
November 8th. Sailing the same evening, the _Canopus_, when half-way
to Montevideo, was ordered by the Admiralty to return and guard the

On November 13th a warship was sighted from the signal station at
Port Stanley making straight towards the harbour from the eastward,
an unusual direction from which to approach. The volunteers were
called out by the church bells sounding the alarm, and every
preparation was made to resist a landing; the _Canopus_ on her part
could get no reply from the wireless station, so was only able to
conclude that Port Stanley had fallen into the enemy's hands. When
it was seen that the visitor was none other than the _Canopus_, the
feelings of joy and relief were universal and knew no bounds.

Most of the inhabitants buried all their worldly goods of any value,
some using their back gardens, which are lightly fenced off from one
another, whilst others even carried furniture some distance inland.
Several amusing stories resulted. One of these Scots, from the window
of his house, had watched his neighbour burying a tin box, and had
carefully noted its exact position. Being hard up, he scaled the
fence that night and dug up and forced the box. Finding it contained
sovereigns, he helped himself to a portion, replaced the box, and
covered it over carefully with earth. A few days later, temptation
getting the better of him, he paid his neighbour's garden another
visit; on the third occasion, however, he was caught red-handed. When
brought to book his defence was that as they were such friends he had
not taken the whole lot the first time, which would have been quite
easy to do, but only a little just when it was needed to tide him
over his difficulties.

The _Bristol_, _Glasgow_, and _Inflexible_ were ordered to coal
as soon as we arrived, the remainder awaiting their turn. The
_Carnarvon_, _Cornwall_, and _Bristol_ were allowed to put fires out
to clean boilers and make adjustments to the valves and machinery
of the main engines, in preparation for a protracted sea voyage.
The _Macedonia_ patrolled the entrance to the harbour, the _Kent_
being ordered to relieve her at 8 o'clock the following morning. The
_Bristol_ and _Glasgow_, being of light draught, proceeded into the
inner harbour, but the rest of the squadron anchored in the outer
harbour, Port William, as will be seen from the plan.

There is no telegraph cable to the Falklands, so that it was obvious
the first point of attack by the enemy would be the wireless
station. To protect this the _Canopus_ entered the inner harbour,
forced herself aground on the muddy bottom, and moored taut head and
stern in a position that would enable her to command the southern
approach. Here she was able to fire over the narrow neck of low-lying
land, that at the same time served partially to conceal her. An
observation station, connected with the ship by telephone, was set
up ashore, with an elaborate plan for obtaining the bearing and
elevation for the guns. Top-masts were housed, and the ship, masts,
and funnels were painted all the colours of the rainbow in great big
splodges to render her less visible. A look-out station was set up in
Sparrow Cove, and three 12-pounder batteries were hastily constructed
to dominate the approaches. The landing and placing of these guns,
together with the digging of the emplacements, called for a great
deal of hard work. Every credit is due to the _Canopus_ for the
admirable manner in which she dealt with the situation.

Major Turner, who was in command of the Falkland Island Volunteers,
was indefatigable in his efforts to prepare efficient land defences.
This corps gave valuable assistance to the _Canopus_, co-operating in
the work of preparing the coast defences. Prior to the arrival of the
_Canopus_, their only guns were a 12-pounder 8-cwt. field gun which
had been lent by the _Glasgow_, and a few very antique muzzle-loading
field guns.



      "And from the crow's nest of the Golden Hynde
      A seaman cried, 'By God, the hunt is up!'"

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

December 8th, 1914, was apparently to prove an exception to the
general rule in the Falklands, where it usually rains for twenty-one
days during the last month of the year, for a perfect mid-summer's
morning gave every promise of a fine day to follow. The prospect of a
busy day coaling, and taking in stores, brought with it thoughts of
the morrow when we were to set forth on our quest after the enemy.
The colliers went their round from ship to ship, and the rattling of
the winches hoisting the coal inboard never ceased.

At 7.56 A.M. the _Glasgow_ fired a gun to attract the attention
of the _Invincible_, who was busy coaling, to the signal of the
_Canopus_ reporting smoke in sight to the south.

Shortly after 8 A.M. the officers in the _Cornwall_ were all sitting
at breakfast when the Chief Yeoman of Signals entered with a beaming
face, full of news, to report that cruisers were in sight to the
southward. The general opinion was that some Japanese cruisers
were probably coming to join us, and attention was again turned to

About 8.15 A.M. came a signal from the flag ship: "Raise steam for
full speed, report when ready." Rumour had been so rife of late that
we still remained sceptical until a few minutes later news came from
the signal station on Sapper Hill that two hostile men-of-war were
approaching from the southward, and shortly after that smoke was
visible beyond these vessels.

It afterwards transpired that a lady named Mrs. Felton, the wife
of a sheep farmer living near Point Pleasant, in the south of the
Island, sent her maid and house-boy to the top of a ridge to report
everything they saw whilst she telephoned the sighting of the enemy's
ships to the nearest signal station, from which it was passed to Port
Stanley. She continued to send messages reporting every subsequent
movement of the German ships. The three German colliers, two of which
were sunk, were also first sighted by her and duly reported. She
afterwards received a silver salver from the Admiralty in recognition
of her prompt action, and her maid a silver teapot, whilst the
signalman at Sapper Hill, Port Stanley, received £5 from Admiral
Sturdee--a fact we had cause to remember later on, when frequent
reports of "hearing distant firing," "sighting smoke," resulted in
one or two wild-goose chases!

"Enemy in sight." What a thrilling message for us all! We could
scarcely believe our ears. "What a stroke of luck!" was the general
comment. But this was no time for ruminating; deeds, not words, were
required. At last "the Day" for which we had prepared had dawned.
In very truth the hunt was up. The magic news travelled round the
ship's company like lightning, and they fell in in record time--in
spite of having to forgo some of their breakfast. The _Invincible_,
_Inflexible_, and _Carnarvon_ were in the middle of coaling.
Colliers were cast off, and all ships prepared for action in case the
enemy appeared off the entrance to Port William.

As several of our ships had one engine down at six hours' notice, the
bustle and activity in the engine rooms may well be imagined. We on
deck naturally enough were soon ready, and chafed at the delay.

The _Kent_ went out of harbour to reconnoitre, to report on the
movements of the enemy, and to relieve the _Macedonia_. The enemy's
two leading ships--the _Gneisenau_ and _Nürnberg_--were in sight
and were approaching the wireless station, intending to wreck it.
When near the Wolf Rocks they stopped engines and turned to the
north-eastward. The bearing and elevation of the enemy ships having
been telephoned from the observation station, the _Canopus_, finding
that they could get no closer, opened fire over the low neck of land
at 9.20 A.M. with her 12-inch guns, firing five rounds at a range
of 12,000 yards (_see_ page 83). It was the first time that most of
us had heard a shot fired in a naval action, and it brought home
very forcibly the fact that we should soon be tackling the job to
which we had looked forward for so long. Hoisting their colours,
the enemy turned away S.E. to join the main squadron, which headed
out to the eastward. It afterwards transpired that the Germans had
seen the tripod masts of our battle-cruisers over the land, which
probably decided von Spee in turning away from his objective. In one
moment all his hopes of destroying our Fleet--supposed to consist of
_Carnarvon_, _Cornwall_ and _Bristol_, and possibly the _Canopus_
and _Glasgow_--the wireless station, and then capturing the colony,
were dashed to the ground. From survivors it appears that one of the
_Canopus's_ shells had ricocheted, striking the _Gneisenau_ at the
base of her after funnel; it was also claimed that a piece of another
hit the _Nürnberg_--good shooting by indirect fire at such a range,
with guns of an old type and improvised fire-control arrangements.

Officers of the _Canopus_, who were in the observation station
ashore, saw through the telescope of their theodolite the men on
board the _Gneisenau_ fallen in on deck; they could be distinguished,
quite plainly, dressed ready for landing, in order to capture the
wireless station under cover of their ship's guns. But when the
_Canopus_ opened fire with her first two projectiles they lost no
time in scuttling away to their action stations.

An amusing incident occurred on board the _Canopus_ when the enemy
first hove in sight. The stokers off watch climbed up inside the
foremost funnel to see what was going on and sat round the edge,
feeling quite secure as they knew the ship was ashore--hard and fast.
They very soon came down, however, when they were informed that the
boilers of that funnel were being lit up and the ship going to sea.

At 9.40 A.M. the _Glasgow_ went out to join the _Kent_ in observing
the enemy's movements. Five minutes later the squadron weighed, with
the exception of the _Bristol_, who had all her fires out to clean
boilers. She was ready three-quarters of an hour later, however,
which must have constituted a record for ships of her class. The
_Carnarvon_, _Inflexible_, _Invincible_, and _Cornwall_ proceeded
out in the order named, the _Inflexible_ ramming a sailing pinnace
belonging to the _Cornwall_, half full of stores, on her way through
the line of mines; fortunately a barrel of beer belonging to the
wardroom officers had previously been rescued! The _Macedonia_ was
ordered to remain behind in Port William. It was very clear with
a slight north-westerly breeze--ideal conditions for a long-range

The last of our line cleared the harbour about 10.30 A.M., when the
five enemy ships could be seen hull down on the horizon to the S.E.,
12 to 13 miles off, steaming off in the hopeless attempt to escape.
The signal "General chase" was flying from the _Invincible_, and the
magnificent spectacle of our ships, each with four or five white
ensigns fluttering in the breeze, all working up to full speed, will
always live in the memory of those who witnessed it on that eventful

The surprise and horror of the Germans at seeing our two
battle-cruisers for the first time was testified by the survivors,
who said, "They tried not to believe it." It must have been an awful
moment finding themselves suddenly face to face with almost certain
destruction. First of our ships came the little _Glasgow_, dashing
along like an express train, then the two huge battle-cruisers going
about 25 knots, belching forth volumes of dense black smoke as they
made use of their oil fuel to quicken their fires, followed by the
_Kent_, _Carnarvon_, and _Cornwall_ doing about 22 knots.

The Admiral reduced speed for an hour to 20 knots at 11.15 A.M., to
allow the "County" cruisers to catch up, for it was evident that we
were rapidly gaining on the enemy, as we sped along on an easterly
course. The _Glasgow_ was ordered to keep three miles ahead of the
_Invincible_. There was now an opportunity to get out of coaling kit
and have a hasty wash. The ship's companies were consequently sent to
dinner early, acting on the good old maxim that a man always fights
better on a full stomach; but the excitement was too intense for
most men to have more than a bite, and they were mostly to be seen
crowding about the ship's decks munching a hastily made sandwich.

At 11.27 A.M. the _Bristol_ reported that the smoke of three
steamers, enemy transports, had been sighted from the signal station
at Point Pleasant to the southward of the Island, whereupon the
Commander-in-Chief ordered the _Bristol_ and _Macedonia_ to destroy
them. They arrived to find only two, both big colliers, the _Baden_
and _Santa Isabel_; the _Bristol_ took off the crews and then sank
the vessels. Half an hour later the _Bristol_ learnt the news of
the result of the action, and that the sacrifice of their valuable
cargoes had been unnecessary. The _Macedonia_, who was first upon the
scene, sighted smoke on the horizon, but could see no ship. Rumour
had it that this third ship was the _Seydlitz_, and that she had a
landing party of armed men and field guns on board, but this has
never been substantiated in any way.

The _Glasgow_ was ordered back, and at 12.20 P.M. the
Commander-in-Chief decided to attack the enemy with the
battle-cruisers, whose speed was increased to 25 knots. The enemy
were steaming in two divisions in quarter-line, first the _Gneisenau_
and _Nürnberg_ on the left of the line, then the _Scharnhorst_
(flag), _Dresden_, and _Leipzig_; the latter being astern of the
remainder of their ships, who were on the starboard bow of our
squadron, became the first target. "Action" was sounded, and at once
not a soul was to be seen about the decks, each man being busy at
his appointed station. The Admiral hoisted the signal "Open fire"
at 12.47, and eight minutes later the _Inflexible_ fired at the
_Leipzig_ the first round of the action; the _Invincible_ followed
almost immediately afterwards. Both ships were now going their full
speed, nearly 27 knots, and firing slowly and deliberately at the
great range of 16,000 yards (over nine land miles). The huge columns
of water, over 150 feet high, thrown up by our 12-inch projectiles,
which weigh 840 lb., sometimes completely blotted out the enemy
target at this distance. Owing to the German ships being end-on, it
was difficult to get the direction, but our shots were falling very
close to them at times, and soon produced a drastic change in their

Admiral von Spee is said to have now made this signal to his ships:
"The armoured cruisers will engage the enemy _as long as possible_,
the light cruisers are to use every endeavour to escape." Acting
on this, at 1.20 P.M. the _Dresden_, the _Nürnberg_--which one of
our battle-cruisers claimed to have hit--and the _Leipzig_ turned
away to the southward, the positions of the ships being roughly as
shown in the plan (p. 94). The _Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_ will be
seen turning to port to engage the battle-cruisers, which altered
simultaneously on to a parallel course, whilst the remainder of
our squadron, except the _Carnarvon_, which presumably had orders
to proceed with the Commander-in-Chief, turned and gave chase to
the _Dresden_, _Leipzig_, and _Nürnberg_. The _Carnarvon_ was, of
course, unable to keep up with the big ships, and did not get into
action until later; she was now 10 miles astern, and altered course
to port to cut a corner and join the Flag.


  8^{TH} DECEMBER, 1914.

All this while the "County" cruisers were coming along with
all possible speed. The _Glasgow_ was stationed clear of the
battle-cruisers, which were followed by the _Kent_, _Cornwall_, and
_Carnarvon_. When the action commenced the crews of these ships had
the most perfect view of a modern naval engagement fought at long
range. As an officer in the _Kent_ described it: "We were spectators
in the front row of the stalls, as it were, so close that we could
almost touch the actors on the stage, yet so far that no stray
missile disturbed the comfort of our view. The best seats in the
house at a performance of one of the few remaining spectacles which
cannot be bought for money."

Imagine a calm, smooth sea, the sun shining and not a cloud in the
sky, the ship steaming at something over 23 knots, and the men
crowded on the turrets and in every available corner, tier upon
tier, for all the world as if looking on at a cup tie at the Crystal
Palace.... It was a wonderful sight. The big ships buried their
sterns in the sea, throwing up the seething water in their wakes
as they dashed onwards. The bright flashes of their guns showed up
strikingly, followed successively by the dark brown puffs of cordite
smoke; the seconds were counted until the reports were heard and huge
columns of water thrown up by the splashes were seen. Many of the
men had had friends in the _Good Hope_ and _Monmouth_ whose fate was
fresh in their minds. "Give 'em one for the _Monmouth_!" and "Go on,
boys, give 'em hell--let the blighters feel what it's like!" were
shouted quite unconsciously, punctuated by loud cheers when a salvo
pitched perilously close to the enemy ships. Of course, the majority
realised our superiority, but those in authority must have felt a
pride in such men who gave the impression they would face odds with

The battle now divided itself into two separate engagements, the
battle-cruisers and the _Carnarvon_, which were engaging the two
enemy armoured cruisers, and the _Cornwall_, _Kent_, and _Glasgow_,
which gave chase to the light cruisers. Later, a third action
developed when the _Kent_ went after the _Nürnberg_. Each of these
will be taken in turn and described separately.



      "Are hell-gates burst at last? For the black deep
      To windward burns with streaming crimson fires!
      Over the wild strange waves, they shudder and creep
      Nearer--strange smoke-wreathed masts and spare, red spires
      And blazing hulks."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

A few minutes after the German light-cruisers turned away to the
S.S.E. in accordance with his orders, Admiral Count von Spee,
apparently deciding to accept the inevitable, determined to try and
close so as to get into the effective range of his 8.2-inch guns.
With this intention, his two armoured cruisers turned in succession
about 80 degrees to port, which brought them into line-ahead with the
_Gneisenau_ leading, and then opened fire at 1.30 P.M. But he had
reckoned without his host, as this very obvious manœuvre did not at
all suit Admiral Sturdee's book, who was acting on the principle that
ammunition is cheaper than human life, and was resolved to fight at
his own chosen range. Our ships, therefore, eased speed to 24 knots,
and turned together away from the enemy to port, which brought them
at the same time into line-ahead with the flag ship _Invincible_ in
the van.

The two squadrons were on nearly parallel courses (_see_ facing page
79). The _Inflexible_ had checked fire for a while, but now reopened
on the _Scharnhorst_ at a range of 14,500 yards. Both the enemy ships
concentrated their fire on the _Invincible_ at this time, whilst ours
fired each at his opponent. The respective armaments are seen from
the following:

    _Name_     _Tonnage_  _Armament_  _Speed_  _Completion_  _Armour_

  _Invincible_ }  17,250  {  8--12"  }   26      { 1909      7 to 4 in.
  _Inflexible_ }          { 16--4"   }           { 1908      7 to 4 in.
  _Carnarvon_     10,850     4--7.5"     22        1903      7 to 4 in.
  _Scharnhorst_}          {  8--8.2" } { 23.5      1908      6 to 3 in.
               }  11,420  {  6--5.9" } {
  _Gneisenau_  }          { 20--3.4" } { 23.8      1908      6 to 3 in.

      Compiled from "Brassey's Naval Annual."

As Admiral Sturdee edged away and did not allow the range to get
below 13,500 yards, the fire of the Germans was not effective.
A gunnery officer stated that their fire control was efficient,
and that their salvoes, fired frequently, fell well together, the
spread being about 200 yards. They had been firing about ten minutes
when the _Scharnhorst_ went ahead and took the lead, so our ships
changed targets. For a short time both German ships now fired at the
_Inflexible_, but without result; soon afterwards they again honoured
the _Invincible_ with their attentions, and, getting the range,
scored their first hit about 1.45 P.M. The range was now increased,
spotting the fall of shot became more and more difficult, and finally
smoke interfered with our gunfire. At 2 P.M. the distance of the
enemy was 16,450 yards. Ten minutes later von Spee turned right away
and made a second attempt to escape, as he had been unable to get to
close quarters. We turned gradually after him, but as he continued
to turn away, in the words of Admiral Sturdee, "A second chase
ensued." All firing ceased, and there was an appreciable lull in the

Of the damage to the _Scharnhorst_ at this time no estimate can be
formed, but survivors from the _Gneisenau_ stated that they had three
direct hits, resulting in fifty men being killed and wounded. To the
uninitiated this may seem to be poor shooting; but the difficulty of
seeing clearly enough to make accurate corrections to the gunsights,
the extreme range, and the disturbing effect of the enemy's fire must
all be taken into account. Doubtless, too, there were several hits of
an insignificant nature on the upper works and rigging that were not
taken into account. It was impossible to tell at such a long range
whether we scored a hit unless a fire resulted.

The efficiency of the engine-room staff was now put to the test;
they nobly responded, with the result that our big ships attained a
greater speed than they had ever done before.

At this juncture a full-rigged sailing ship appeared on the port
hand of our battle-cruisers; she was painted white, and her sails
were shining as if bleached in the bright sunlight; with stunsails
and every stitch of canvas spread she sailed majestically along,
looking a perfect picture. So close was she that the Admiral was
forced to alter his course to pass a couple of miles clear of her, so
that the enemy's shell ricocheting should not hit her. Truly it must
have been a thrilling and dramatic moment for her to find herself
an involuntary witness of such a wonderful spectacle! Imagine her
consternation at being plunged suddenly into the middle of a red-hot
naval action between powerfully armed modern men-of-war, with shell
falling in the water quite close alongside.

The distance of the retreating enemy was rapidly decreasing, until
at 2.45 P.M. Admiral Sturdee gave the order to open fire at a range
of about 15,000 yards. Von Spee held on his course in the vain
hope, apparently, of drawing us on, so that by a sudden turn made
later he might "get to grips." Eight minutes afterwards the Germans
were forced to turn to port towards us, forming into line-ahead and
opening fire as soon as they came round. We hauled out once again
on to an almost parallel course. The range had appreciably dropped,
and was at one time under 12,000 yards. Things now became fast and
furious, shot and bursting shell were everywhere in the air, and
our 12-inch guns were doing terrible execution. "It was like hell
let loose," said a petty officer in the flagship, which was hit
several times. The German gunnery was not nearly as good as it had
been in the first phase of the engagement, whilst we had settled
down to business and were, on the whole, more accurate than before.
An officer in the _Inflexible_ remarked that at this time several
of the enemy's shell fell between our two ships and that as his
ship approached these yellow-green patches, he wondered whether the
debatable maxim that no two projectiles ever hit the same spot would
prove accurate.

The _Scharnhorst_ was badly hit at 3 P.M., starting a fire forward,
but she continued to blaze away; the _Gneisenau_ also bore signs
of the severe treatment she had received from the _Inflexible_. The
_Invincible_ now met with some damage, and suffered by far the most
as the enemy's fire was naturally concentrated on her. The wind
had increased, and was blowing the smoke across the guns, impeding
our gunners, and the _Carnarvon_ was coming up astern, so at 3.18
Admiral Sturdee executed a sudden manœuvre by putting his helm
over to starboard, turning completely around, and crossing his own
track so as to steer roughly S.W.; this put the enemy completely
off the range, and also forced him five minutes later on to a
parallel course, in order to avoid the alternative of being raked
fore and aft. As both our ships had altered course together, their
respective positions became reversed--the _Inflexible_ leading--and
they presented their port sides to the enemy (_see_ facing p. 79).
The _Carnarvon_ cut the corner and came up on the off side of the
battle-cruisers, in accordance with Admiral Sturdee's orders,
as her guns were useless at ranges exceeding 12,000 yards. The
_Scharnhorst_, who had already had a bad hammering from the flagship,
was now subjected to the concentrated fire of our two big ships for
a very short time, during which the _Gneisenau_ was lost sight of
in her consort's smoke. At 3.30 P.M. the _Scharnhorst's_ fire had
slackened perceptibly, and one shell had shot away her third funnel.

The _Invincible_ now engaged the _Gneisenau_, who was not nearly so
badly damaged and was firing all her guns. In fact, all ships were at
it as hard as they could go, but the _Inflexible_ came off lightly on
account of the plight of her opponent. The noise was indescribable,
shell were hurtling through the rigging; when one actually struck
and burst, the whole ship quivered and staggered, while the crash
of steel plates falling, and splinters of shell striking the upper
works, sounded like hundreds of empty tins being hurled against one

The _Scharnhorst_ was clearly in a very bad way, and looked, as
she was, a perfect wreck. Masses of steel were twisted and torn as
if growing out in all directions like the roots of a tree, clouds
of steam were going up sky high, and she was blazing fore and aft.
The Admiral says, "At times a shell would cause a large hole to
appear in her side, through which could be seen a dull red glow of
flame." She was 14,000 yards distant. Up till quite near the end,
however, she continued to fire in salvos, her starboard guns having
only been in action since the last turn was made. At 3.56 P.M. the
Commander-in-Chief decided to close in and give her the _coup de
grace_, which enabled the Carnarvon to get into action and open fire
for the first time. By 4 P.M. both the _Scharnhorst's_ masts, as well
as her three funnels, were shot away, and she was listing heavily to
port. She struggled on hopelessly and went over more and more, until
at 4.10 P.M. she was on her beam ends. For seven minutes she remained
in this position, her screws still going round, and then suddenly
sank like a stone, with her flag still flying.

Shortly before the German flagship sank, our ships checked fire and
then opened on the _Gneisenau_. It will be seen from the plan of
the action that at the time the _Invincible_ turned two complete
circles in a sort of figure of eight, the _Gneisenau_ hesitated for
a minute or two as to whether she should stand by her consort to save
life. Under the impression, apparently, that our flagship, which had
turned towards the _Scharnhorst_, was about to pick up survivors, the
_Gneisenau_ passed on the far side of the sinking ship and opened a
heavy and well-directed fire on the _Inflexible_. We were now three
against one, who was, nevertheless, determined to sell herself as
dearly as possible. It was a gallant attempt.

The distance was fortunately too great to see clearly the wretched
survivors of the _Scharnhorst_ left struggling hopelessly against
their fate, but it brought the dark side of war very vividly into
notice for the first time. A quarter of an hour after she sank the
_Carnarvon_ passed over the exact spot, but neither survivors nor
wreckage were to be seen.

The weather now changed, a light drizzling mist obscuring the former
visibility. It was obvious that there could be only one end to the
fight now in progress, and that it could not long be delayed. At 4.15
P.M. the _Invincible_ opened fire on the _Gneisenau_, which shifted
her target from the _Inflexible_ and fired at the flagship with
creditable precision. She was "straddling" the _Invincible_ at 4.25,
the range being about 10,000 yards, so this was increased. During the
next quarter of an hour our flagship was hit three times, but the
German was taking terrible punishment. At 4.47 she ceased firing; her
colours had been shot away several times, but she had hoisted them
again and again. Now, however, no colours were to be seen, so it was
only natural to conclude she had struck, though it was afterwards
ascertained that she had no more left to hoist. Our ships turned to
avoid getting too far off, when, to the surprise of all, she suddenly
fired off a solitary gun, showing that she was still game. Unlike
her late consort, which looked a perfect wreck for some time before
actually sinking, she had to all appearances suffered very little. At
5.8 P.M., however, her foremost funnel went by the board.

The carnage and destruction wrought in the _Gneisenau_ by our three
ships were terrible, and it was astonishing what a deal of hammering
she was still able to bear. That her casualties at this time were
very heavy was beyond doubt, as shell were to be seen tearing up
her decks as they burst, while the upper works became a veritable
shambles. It was not till 5.15 that the doomed ship, being badly hit
between the third and fourth funnels, showed real signs of being
_in extremis_. She was still firing, however, and even scored an
effective hit--the last one she was to get--about this period.

At 5.30 she was obviously dead beat and turned towards our squadron
with a heavy list to starboard, afire fore and aft, and steam issuing
in dense clouds from all directions. Admiral Sturdee now ordered
"Cease fire," but before the signal could be hoisted _Gneisenau_
opened fire again, and continued to keep it up with her one remaining
undamaged gun. This was returned until it was silenced, when our
ships closed in on her. The ensign flying at her foremast head was
hauled down at 5.40, but the one at her peak was left flying. Five
minutes later she again fired, but only one solitary round, after
which she maintained silence. The signal was made to cease firing
immediately afterwards, when it was evident that her gallant struggle
was at an end.

She now heeled over quite slowly, giving her men plenty of time to
get up on deck. At 6 P.M. our ships were perhaps 4,000 yards off,
and the Germans could be seen gathering together on her "forecastle
quarter deck." Remaining on her beam ends for a few seconds, during
which the men were seen clambering about on her side, she quite
gently subsided and disappeared without any explosion, although a
film of steamy haze hovered over the spot where she sank. The bow
remained poised for a second or two, after which she foundered at 6.2
in latitude 52° 40′ S., longitude 56° 20′ W., having withstood the
combined fire of our ships for an hour and forty-five minutes.

The sea was no longer quite calm, and a misty, drizzling rain was
falling. Closing in hastily, every effort was made to save life, and
boats were got out and lowered. This is no easy job after an action,
as the boats are turned inboard, resting on their crutches, and are
kept partially filled with water in case a shell might strike them
and cause a fire. This water must first be drained out, then the
weight of the boat is hoisted on to the slips to enable it to be
swung outboard, which is not easy if the ship has been hit near the
water-line, causing a list. Finally, several of the boats are certain
to be riddled with shell splinters.

A midshipman, describing the scene that followed, writes, "We cast
overboard every rope's end we can and try our hands at casting to
some poor wretch feebly struggling within a few yards of the ship's
side. Missed him! Another shot. He's further off now! Ah! the rope
isn't long enough. No good; try someone else. He's sunk now!"

The men, however, had not yet heard of the rough weather during
the Coronel action, and still thought that the Germans might have
saved our poor fellows there. Lines were thrown over with shouts of,
"Here, Sausage, put this round your belly," and the like. Taking into
consideration that it was estimated some 600 men had been killed
or wounded, and that the temperature of the water was 40°, it was
fortunate that as many as 170 officers and men were rescued. The
gallant Admiral Count von Spee, whose conduct bears out the best
traditions of naval history, and his two sons, all lost their lives
in the course of the day.

A curious feature of this action was the terrific damage done by
12-inch lyddite shell. One of the _Gneisenau's_ turrets was severed
from its trunk and blown bodily overboard. Nearly every projectile
that hit caused a fire, which was often promptly extinguished by the
splash of the next one falling short. Indeed, it was stated by the
prisoners that the guns' crews in the German ships were frequently
working their guns up to their knees in water, and towards the latter
part of the engagements were unable to fire on account of the volume
of water thrown up by short shots.

The _Invincible_ had been hit about twenty-two times, but the
fighting efficiency of the ship was not affected. Eighteen of these
were direct hits, two being below the water-line on the port side,
one of which flooded a bunker and gave her a list to port. There
were no casualties, however, amongst her complement of 950. The
_Inflexible_ was only hit directly twice; she had one man killed and
three slightly wounded. Her main derrick was cut in two, so that she
was unable to use her steam boats. The few casualties speak more
eloquently than any words of the tactics adopted by Admiral Sturdee
in putting to the greatest possible use the heavier armament at his

The _Invincible_ had some interesting damage. One 8.2-inch shell
burst and completely wrecked her wardroom, making a gigantic hole
in her side. Two others hit the stalk of her after conning tower
and burst, but did no damage to the inmates, who only complained
of the fumes being sweet and sickly, leaving an unpleasant taste
which, however, soon wore off. Another interesting case was the
extraordinary damage done by a spent projectile falling at an angle
of fifty degrees. Passing close under her forebridge, it cut the
muzzle of one of her 4-inch guns clean off, after which it passed
through the steel deck, through a ventilating trunk, through the
deck below, and finished up in the Admiral's storeroom--side by
side with the cheese, which put the finishing touch to its career.
Another shell caused a nasty hole on the water-line, seven feet by
three, which was found to be beyond the capabilities of the ship's
staff to repair temporarily. The bunker had to be left flooded, all
the surrounding bulkheads being carefully shored up and strengthened
until she returned to England. In "A Naval Digression"[8] "G. F."
says: "On a part of the main deck one might have imagined for a
second that a philanthropist had been at work, for there, strewn
about, were a thousand odd golden sovereigns; a shell had come
through the upper deck, and, visiting the Fleet-Paymaster's cabin,
had 'upset' the money chest. It had then gone through the bulkhead
into the chaplain's cabin next door, and finally passed out through
the ship's side, taking with it a large part of the reverend
gentleman's wardrobe, and reducing to rags and tatters most of what
it had the decency to leave behind."

The Commander of the _Gneisenau_ was picked up by the _Inflexible_,
and gave some interesting details. Describing the time when the
_Canopus_ fired at the _Gneisenau_ and _Nürnberg_ on their first
approach to Port Stanley, he told us that he said to his Captain,
"Captain, we must either fight or go faster," adding that in his
opinion the day would have ended very differently had they come
up boldly off the mouth of the harbour and bombarded our ships at
anchor before they were able to get out. There can be no doubt that
the issue would have been the same, but the Germans might have been
able to inflict some serious damage, especially to those ships
lying nearest the mouth of the harbour, who would have masked the
battle-cruisers' fire. However, his Captain elected to run, so they
went "faster."

During the action he had to go round the ship with the fire-master,
putting out any fires that were discovered. Whilst going his rounds
during the engagement he found a stoker near one of the drinking
tanks on the mess deck, who said he had come up to get a drink of
water. The Hun Commander told him that he had no business to leave
his post, and, drawing his revolver, shot him dead where he stood.

A curious yarn is connected with Admiral Stoddart, who was in the
_Carnarvon_. He had a distant cousin in the German Navy whom he
had never met and about whose career he had frequently been asked
in years gone by. This cousin of his was one of those saved by the
_Carnarvon_, and when he got aboard he said, "I believe I have a
cousin in one of the British ships. His name is Stoddart." To find he
was the Admiral on board that very ship must have indeed given him
what the sailor terms "a fair knock out." He stated that practically
every man on the upper deck of the _Gneisenau_ was either killed or
wounded, and that it was a feat of the greatest difficulty to climb
across the deck, so great was the havoc wrought in all directions.

Another officer, who was stationed in one of the 8.2-inch turrets,
had a remarkable experience. The turret was hit by a 12-inch shell,
and he emerged the sole survivor. He then went on to a casemate,
which was also knocked out and most of the crew killed. Trying a
third gun, he was perhaps even more fortunate, as it was also hit by
a 12-inch shell, and the same thing happened, but shortly after the
ship sank and he was saved! This hero was a fat, young lieutenant,
who apparently drowned his sorrows the evening before he quitted the
_Carnarvon_. Before retiring to bed he stood up in the mess, drink in
hand, bowed blandly to everyone and said, with a broad smile on his
fat face, "Gentlemen, I thank you very much--you have been very kind
to me, and I wish you all in Hell!"

The wisdom of Admiral Sturdee's orders to the _Carnarvon_ to keep
out of range of the Germans was brought home by an officer survivor
of the _Gneisenau_, who said that they knew they were done and had
orders "to concentrate on the _little_ ship and sink her if she came
within range!"

Upwards of 600 men had been killed or wounded when the _Gneisenau's_
ammunition was finally expended. The German captain "fell-in" the
remainder and told them to provide themselves with hammocks or any
woodwork they could find, in order to support themselves in the water.

A certain number of the German sailors that were rescued from the icy
ocean succumbed to exposure and shock, though the proportion was very
small. They were given a naval funeral with full military honours and
were buried at sea the day after the battle. When the funeral service
was about to take place on the quarter-deck of one of our warships,
the German prisoners were told to come aft to attend it. On rounding
the superstructure, however, the leading men suddenly halted dead,
brought up aghast with fright at the sight of the guard of armed
marines falling in across the deck, who were about to pay the last
tributes of military honours to the dead. When ordered on, these
terrified Huns point blank refused to move, being convinced that the
Marine Guard was there in order to shoot them!



                "War raged in heaven that day ...
      ... Light against darkness, Liberty
      Against all dark old despotism, unsheathed
      The sword in that great hour."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

It will be recollected that during the chase the battle-cruisers
were firing at the _Leipzig_ before the main battle with Admiral
von Spee took place. This compelled the Germans to divide into two
separate squadrons, since a direct hit from a 12-inch gun might
easily prove fatal to one of their light-cruisers. Foreseeing that
this manœuvre was likely to occur, Admiral Sturdee had directed the
_Cornwall_, _Kent_, and _Glasgow_ to follow in pursuit. No time was
lost, therefore, in giving chase to the enemy light-cruisers when
they turned off to the S.S.E. at 1.20 P.M., the _Glasgow_ leading the
way at 26 knots, followed by the _Kent_ and the _Cornwall_ keeping
neck and neck and going about 23½ knots. The _Dresden_ led the enemy
light-cruisers with the _Leipzig_ and _Nürnberg_ on her starboard and
port quarter respectively.

In the ever-increasing distance between our two squadrons, the main
battle could still be seen through field glasses, which made the
necessity for turning away from a spectacle of such absorbing and
compelling interest all the more tantalising. But there was solid
work to be done, requiring concentration, thought, and cool judgment.

A stern chase is proverbially a long one, and the difference in speed
between our ships and the Germans' was not sufficient to justify any
hope of getting to business for at least two hours, as the slowest
enemy ship was probably doing 23 knots at this time. Every effort was
now made to go as fast as possible, and the _Cornwall_ and _Kent_
had quite an exciting race as they worked up to 24 knots or slightly
more--a speed actually exceeding that realised along the measured
mile when these ships were new. The engine-room staffs on both ships
"dug out for all they were worth," and the keenest rivalry prevailed.

It was very evident that a long chase lay before us, for the
_Glasgow_ was the only ship of the three that had a marked
superiority in speed to the enemy. The _Cornwall_ and _Kent_ were
gaining very slowly but surely on the _Leipzig_ and _Nürnberg_, but
were losing on the _Dresden_.

The enemy kept edging away to port continually, and about 2.15 we
passed over the spot where later in the day the _Gneisenau_ was sunk
by our battle-cruisers.

About 2.45 P.M. the positions of the ships were as plan (_see_ page
112). The _Leipzig_ was the centre rearmost ship, with the _Dresden_
some four to five miles on her starboard bow, while the _Nürnberg_
was about a mile on her port bow. Both these ships were diverging
slightly from the _Leipzig_, spreading out in the shape of a fan to
escape being brought to action. The _Cornwall_ and _Kent_ were some
eleven miles astern of the _Leipzig_, and the _Glasgow_ was four
miles distant on the starboard bow.

[Illustration: _Diagram showing position at 2.45 p.m. weather
conditions not so good wind and rain from N.W._]

As the _Glasgow_ drew ahead she edged over to starboard in the
direction of the _Dresden_. About 3 P.M. she opened fire with her
two 6-inch guns on the _Leipzig_ at 12,000 yards, in the hope of
outranging her and reducing her speed, so that the _Cornwall_ and
_Kent_ might come into action. The _Leipzig_, however, held on her
course, and replied to the _Glasgow's_ fire, though it was evident
that she was at the limit of her gun range. The firing was spasmodic
and not very effective.

The _Glasgow's_ speed was so much superior to that of the enemy that
she soon closed the range very appreciably, and the _Leipzig_ was
seen to straddle her with her salvoes on more than one occasion. The
_Glasgow_ therefore altered course outwards, at the same time firing
her after 6-inch gun, and then, having opened the range, turned up on
to a roughly parallel course with the German. The duel between these
ships continued intermittently.

The _Cornwall_ and _Kent_ were still keeping fairly level, and had
closed in to a distance of about half a mile from one another. The
chase continued, each minute seeming an age, as the range-finders
registered the slowly diminishing distance of the enemy. The crews
watched the proceedings from the forecastles with the greatest
interest; now and again a half-smothered cheer would break out when
the _Glasgow's_ shots fell perilously near the mark. When the bugle
sounded "Action," the men responded with a spontaneous cheer as they
rushed off at the double to their appointed stations. Their spirit
was fine.

Captain J. Luce, of the _Glasgow_, was the senior naval officer
of our three ships, and at 3.20 P.M. signalled the _Cornwall_ to
ask, "Are you gaining on the enemy?" To which a reply was made,
"Yes--range now 16,000 yards." A quarter of an hour later the
_Glasgow_ ceased fire for a while. Captain W. M. Ellerton, of the
_Cornwall_, now made a signal to the _Kent_: "I will take the centre
target (_Leipzig_) if you will take the left-hand one (_Nürnberg_),
as we appear to be gaining on both of them." The _Glasgow_ again
opened fire on the _Leipzig_ at 3.45, but her shots falling short,
she very soon afterwards ceased fire. At 4.6 the _Glasgow_ and
_Leipzig_ again fired at one another, and shortly afterwards the
former was hit twice; an unlucky shot, descending at a steep angle,
killed one man and wounded four others.

Captain Luce now found himself face to face with a difficult
decision, which had to be made promptly. Was he to use his superior
speed and endeavour to cut off the _Dresden_ or not? He decided
to assist the _Cornwall_ and _Kent_ in order to make sure of the
destruction of the _Leipzig_ and _Nürnberg_. At 4.25 P.M. the
_Glasgow_ turned to starboard away from the action and took station
on the port quarter of the _Cornwall_, who had by that time come into
action with the _Leipzig_.

During this period the _Cornwall_ and _Kent_ had been gaining fairly
rapidly on the _Leipzig_ and slowly on the _Nürnberg_, though losing
on the _Dresden_, who was easily the fastest of the three German
light-cruisers. The latter kept edging away gradually to starboard,
outdistancing her pursuers, and finally made good her escape without
firing a single shot.

At a quarter past four the _Cornwall_ and the _Kent_ opened fire
on the _Leipzig_ almost simultaneously at a range of 10,900 yards.
The effect of this was that the German altered course slightly to
starboard and was followed by the _Cornwall_, while the _Kent_ went
after the _Nürnberg_, as had been arranged.

The _Leipzig_ now directed her fire on to the _Cornwall_. At the
outset we were astounded to find that her projectiles were falling
over us at this distance, but she soon found this out, and most
of her splashes were well short for some minutes. As the range
diminished the firing became more accurate, and it was possible to
judge of its effect. It was not till 4.22 that the _Cornwall_ scored
her first visible hit, which carried away the enemy's fore-topmast,
killing the gunnery lieutenant and disabling the fire control. The
enemy thereupon altered course away slightly to starboard, at which
we made a bigger turn in the same direction, so as to cut him off,
as well as to cross his course the more rapidly in the event of his
dropping mines overboard. This manœuvre brought the range down to
8,275 yards at 4.56, when he scored some hits. Captain Ellerton then
turned away to starboard to give the enemy a broadside, at the same
time opening the range, which completely upset the accuracy of the
_Leipzig's_ fire.

The _Glasgow_ took up her self-appointed station on the port quarter
of the _Cornwall_ (_see_ Plan, p. 112), and the action developed
into a running fight between our two ships and the _Leipzig_, who
concentrated her fire on the _Cornwall_, which, however, had superior

   _Name_       _Tonnage_   _Armament_   _Speed_   _Completion_

  _Cornwall_      9,800       14--6"       23.68        1904
  _Glasgow_       4,800        2--6"
                              10--4"       25.8         1900
  _Leipzig_       3,200       10--4.1"     23.5         1906

        From "Brassey's Naval Annual."

Mist and a light drizzling rain now set in, so we broke into
independent firing on account of the difficulty of spotting the fall
of shot. The range opened to 9,800 yards, and still we were being
hit, which clearly showed the efficiency of the German 4.1-inch gun.
Our course soon took us out of range, so we again turned towards the
enemy, ceasing fire from 5.12 to 5.29 P.M. This was analogous to
the interval that occurred in the battle-cruisers' action, and is
significant; both took place on the same day, and both were due to
the same cause--namely, the idea of making full use of the heavier
armament in our ships, and thus eliminating the risk of incurring
unnecessary casualties.

Shortly after 5.30 P.M. the _Cornwall_ was hit no fewer than nine
times in as many minutes at a range of over 9,000 yards, so course
was again altered to starboard, a broadside being fired as the
ship turned. We continued these tactics, closing in and firing the
foremost group of guns and then turning out again as soon as we had
got in too close, at the same time getting in broadside fire, by
which we managed to score a number of hits with common shell.

Fire was checked at 5.46, slow salvoes being resorted to on account
of the difficulties of spotting. At this time a heavy thud was felt
forward, which made the whole ship quiver; a shell had landed in
the paint room, where it burst and made rather a mess of things.
No material damage resulted, and there was fortunately no fire. At
6.15 we started using lyddite instead of common shell, having again
decreased the range. The result was stupendous, the dark smoke and
flash caused by those projectiles as they struck could be plainly
seen, and not long afterwards the enemy was on fire. His return fire
began to slacken appreciably, though he still managed to get a hit
every now and again. Captain Ellerton decided to close and went in to
nearly 7,000 yards, turning and letting the German have it from the
port broadside.

It was now 6.35, and the news came through by wireless from the
flagship that the _Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_ had been sunk. It
passed round the ship like lightning, even penetrating the watertight
bulkheads in some miraculous manner, and cheered up all hands

Keeping the range between 7,000 and 8,000 yards, our ships continued
to do great damage, and at 6.51 the enemy was seen to be badly on
fire forward. In spite of this he continued to fire with great
spirit, and even registered a few hits between 6.55 and 7.45 P.M.
Then his firing stopped completely, and it was observed that he was
on fire the whole length of the ship. The scuttles showed up like a
series of blood-red dots gleaming from the ship's side, the whole of
the foremost funnel and part of the centre one had disappeared, the
upper works were severely damaged, while smoke was issuing here and
there. The ship, indeed, presented a sorry spectacle.

All this time the _Glasgow_, which was still on the quarter of the
_Cornwall_, had also been busily engaged with the _Leipzig_, but at a
greater range.

We ceased firing at 7.10, thinking that the enemy would strike his
colours; but not a bit of it, so three minutes later we reopened fire
with reluctance, though only for a couple of minutes. We closed in to
4,700 yards, turning 16 points in order to keep well out of torpedo
range, and gave him a few more salvoes of lyddite with our starboard
guns. The light was beginning to wane, and though twilight is very
prolonged in these southern regions during the summer, it would soon
have been too dark to see through the telescopic sights. At 7.43
an explosion took place on board the _Leipzig_; three minutes later
the mainmast went slowly over, and finally collapsed with a crash.
We waited to give her an opportunity to haul down her colours and
surrender, and then opened fire again just before 8 P.M. At last, at
8.12, the Germans sent up two green lights as signals of distress, at
which we both immediately closed in, stopped, and proceeded to get
out boats. Darkness fell rapidly, and searchlights were turned on
to the enemy, lighting up the ghastly scene where men could be seen
jumping clear of the ship into the icy-cold water. The _Leipzig_ was
heeled over to port, almost on her beam ends; she only had a bit of
one funnel left, and all the after part of the ship was in flames.
The fire on her forecastle had also burst into flame. Thick clouds of
white steam escaping, showed up against the dense black smoke, and
increased the dramatic effect. Our little boats became visible in the
beams of the searchlights, as they rowed round to pick up survivors.
At 9.21 P.M. a shower of sparks suddenly announced an explosion,
directly after which the _Leipzig_ foundered. Several of our boats
were holed, and we only succeeded in saving six officers and nine men
between the two of us, all of whom, however, survived the extreme
cold. They told us that before the ship was abandoned the Kingston
valves had been opened.

No further casualties had occurred on board the _Glasgow_ since
those already mentioned, as after joining the _Cornwall_ she had not
come under direct fire, although some projectiles intended for the
latter did hit her. The _Cornwall_ was even more fortunate in having
no casualties at all except for a solitary pet canary, in spite of
having eighteen direct hits not counting splinter holes, of which
there were forty-two in one funnel alone. This absence of casualties,
which was also a feature of the battle-cruiser action, speaks for the
efficient handling of the ship by Captain Ellerton.

Survivors stated that von Spee was originally going direct to the
Plate to coal, but that having captured a sailing vessel full of coal
at Cape Horn, he changed his plans and decided to attack the Falkland
Islands. It was also stated that the _Leipzig_ had a large amount of
gold on board.

One of the survivors rescued by the _Cornwall_ was a naval reservist,
who in time of peace had occupied the post of German interpreter to
the Law Courts at Sydney, in Australia. When hauled into the boat
the first words he used as soon as he had recovered his breath were:
"It's bloody cold" in a perfect English accent. It is a well-known
fact that sailors rarely make use of bad language, and the bowman who
had hauled him out of the water is said to have fainted! Evidently
the language of the Law leaves much to be desired.

The torpedo lieutenant of the _Leipzig_ was amongst those saved
by the _Cornwall_. When brought alongside he was too exhausted to
clamber up the ship's side unaided, but when he reached the upper
deck he pulled himself together and stood to attention, saluting our
officers at the gangway. When he came into the wardroom later on he
explained that he had been on board before as a guest at dinner at
the time that the ship paid a visit to Kiel for the regatta in 1909,
adding that he little expected then that his next visit would take
place under such tragic circumstances.

This officer surprised us all by suddenly asking when the _Cornwall_
had had bigger guns put into her, and went on to say that when
we fired our "big guns"--meaning when we started to use lyddite
shell--the damage was appalling, arms and legs were to be seen
all along the decks, and each shell that burst started a fire. He
went on to say that the _Cornwall's_ firing was very effective and
accurate, but doubtless most of the prisoners told their captors
the same thing. We explained that the armament had not been changed
since the ship was originally built. He also told us that the German
captain had assembled all the ship's company when their 1,800 rounds
of ammunition were expended, and said, "There is the ensign, and any
man who wishes may go and haul it down, but I will not do so." Not a
soul moved to carry out the suggestion, but about fifty men, having
obtained permission, jumped overboard and must have perished from the
cold. There were only eighteen left alive on board at the end, so far
as he could judge, and of these sixteen were saved. All the officers
carried whistles, which accounted for their being located in the
water so easily.

The prisoners naturally wished to glorify themselves, their captain,
and their shipmates in the eyes of their fellow-countrymen, before
whom they knew that these stories would eventually be repeated.
Therefore these yarns about the ensign, the men jumping overboard,
and the opening of the Kingston valves must be taken with a grain of

The _Cornwall_ had one or two interesting examples of the damage
done to a ship by modern high-explosive shell. The most serious was
a shell that must have exploded on the water-line, as the ship was
rolling, for the side was afterwards found to be indented 5 inches
at a position 5 to 6 feet below the water-line, and consequently
below the armoured belt, a cross bulkhead being at the precise point
of impact. Curious as it may appear, even the paint was untouched,
and there was no sign of a direct hit from outboard, except for the
bulge that remained and the starting of a good many rivets from their
sockets. The cross bulkhead behind was buckled up like corrugated
iron, and the two coal bunkers, which had been empty, were flooded,
giving the ship a heavy list. When we got into Port William we
managed to heel the ship sufficiently to enable our carpenters to
get at the leak, and they succeeded in completely stopping it in
two days, working day and night--a fine performance, for which Mr.
Egford, the carpenter, received the D.S.C., whilst his staff were
personally congratulated by the Commander-in-Chief.

Another shell passed through the steel depression rail of the
after 6-inch turret, by which it was deflected through the deck at
the junction of two cabin bulkheads; it next penetrated the deck
below and finally burst on the ship's side, causing a large hole.
An amusing incident was connected with this. The projectile cut a
fire-hose in half, the business end of which was carried down the
hole into one of the officer's cabins, where it continued to pump in
water for the remainder of the action. At the end of the day this
officer found all his belongings, including his full dress and cocked
hat, floating about in two or three feet of water.

Another officer was seated on a box in the ammunition passage waiting
for the wounded, when a shell struck the ship's side close by him,
the concussion knocking him off. Getting up, he saw the doctor near
by, and thought he had kicked him, so asked him angrily what the
blazes he thought he was doing. It was not until after a long and
heated argument that he could be persuaded to believe that he had not
been the victim of a practical joke.

In another case a shell shot away the fire main immediately above
one of the stokeholds, which was flooded. Stoker Petty Officer W. A.
Townsend and Stoker John Smith were afterwards both decorated with
the D.S.M. for "keeping the boiler fires going under very trying

It was mentioned before that some ships had leave to open up their
machinery for repairs. The _Cornwall_ was to have steam at six hours'
notice, and had the low-pressure cylinder of the port engine opened
up and in pieces for repairs when the signal to raise steam was
made. Chief Engine Room Artificer J. G. Hill was awarded the D.S.M.
"for his smart performance in getting the port engine, which was
disconnected, into working order." It will have been noticed that the
ship was steaming 20 knots two and a half hours after the signal to
raise steam. This was a remarkable performance, and reflected great
credit on her entire engineering staff.

A signalman, Frank Glover, was given the D.S.M. for "carrying out his
duties of range-taker in a very cool manner during the whole of the
action." He was in an entirely exposed position on the fore upper

More has been said about the part taken by the _Cornwall_, as the
writer was on board her, and most of the incidents described came
under his personal observation. They are, however, typical of the
conduct of the officers and men in the other ships that took part.[9]



                            "While England, England rose,
      Her white cliffs laughing out across the waves,
      Victorious over all her enemies."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

We must now go back to the commencement of the action with the
_Leipzig_. At 4.30 P.M., in accordance with a signal made by the
_Cornwall_, the _Kent_ branched off in pursuit of the _Nürnberg_ and
was soon out of sight.

Thus a third fight developed through the high speed attained by
the _Kent_, which enabled her to catch up and force action on the
_Nürnberg_. The following description has been largely compiled from
a narrative written by an officer in the _Kent_, while from the
particulars undernoted concerning the ships two important features
stand out: the speed of the two ships was nearly equal, and the
German was built five years later than her opponent, and therefore
should have been able to maintain her speed with less difficulty.

   _Name_      _Tonnage_  _Armament_  _Speed_  _Completion_

  _Kent_          9,800     14--6"      23.7       1903
  _Nürnberg_      3,396     10--4.1"    23.5       1908

        "Brassey's Naval Annual."

In the course of the afternoon the weather became misty, so that it
seemed imperative to get to close quarters as rapidly as possible.
That this was fully realised and acted upon is shown by what was
written by an officer in the _Kent_: "In the last hour of the chase,
helped by a light ship and a clean bottom, by the most determined
stoking, by unremitting attention to her no longer youthful
boilers--in short, by the devotion of every officer and man in the
engine and boiler rooms, the _Kent_ achieved the remarkable speed of
25 knots."

Both ships were steering a south-easterly course at 5 P.M. when the
_Kent_ got within range of the _Nürnberg_, which opened fire with
her stern guns. The chase had in all lasted nearly seven hours,
so the sound of the enemy's guns proved doubly welcome, since it
brought home the fact that the German was now trapped. The fall
of the enemy's shot was awaited with that eagerness combined with
anxiety which only those who have undergone the experience can fully
realise. Accurate ranges were hard to take on account of the abnormal
vibration caused by the speed at which the ship was travelling, but
it was expected that the enemy's first salvoes would fall short. But
not a sign was to be seen anywhere of these projectiles. Where, then,
had they gone?

Officers glanced round the horizon to make quite certain that the
enemy was not firing at another ship, but nothing else was in sight.
A light, drizzling rain was falling, so that it was not till the
third salvo that the splashes were discovered astern of the ship.
This bore out the experience of the _Cornwall_ and _Glasgow_, which
had also been astonished at the long range of the German 4.1" gun,
which is said to be sighted up to 12 kilometres (13,120 yards).

Nine minutes after (5.9) the _Kent_ opened fire at 11,000 yards
with her fore turret, but the shots fell short. Altering course
slightly to port, she was able to bring her two foremost 6-inch on
the starboard side to bear, making four guns in all. The light was
poor, and both ships had difficulty in seeing well enough to correct
the gun range at this distance. Thus this opening stage of the combat
was not very fruitful of results as far as could be judged, though
survivors subsequently stated that the _Kent_ scored two effective
hits, one of which penetrated the after steering flat below the
waterline and killed all the men in it with one exception. On the
other hand, the enemy (missing mainly for deflection) only got in one
hit during the same period.

About 5.35 two boilers of the _Nürnberg_ burst in quick succession,
apparently from excess of pressure due to her strenuous efforts to
escape. This reduced her speed to 19 knots, when all hope of averting
disaster, even with the aid of several lucky shots, was shattered at
one fell swoop. The _Kent_ now gained very rapidly on her opponent,
and all anxiety as to the chase being prolonged until dark was

[Illustration: _Plan of action between H.M.S. "KENT" and German Light
Cruiser "NÜRNBERG" off FALKLAND ISLANDS December 8^{th} 1914_

  The Mappa Co. Ltd. London

Realising the hopelessness of continuing the attempt to escape, the
German decided to fight it out, and altered course ten minutes later
90 degrees to port (_see_ Plan). The _Kent_ turned about 70 degrees
to port, so that both ships were on converging courses, and able to
bring every gun on the broadside to bear. The running fight was over,
and the action developed during the ensuing quarter of an hour
into as fierce a duel as it is possible to imagine, with the range
rapidly decreasing from 6,000 to 3,000 yards and all guns firing
in succession, keeping up one continuous thunder. The _Kent_ now
started using her lyddite shell. As was only to be expected, a good
deal of damage resulted. In a very short time a fire broke out near
the German's mainmast, followed a little later by the fall of her
main-topmast, which bent gracefully forward like a sapling, and then
fell with a crash. Both ships were firing their guns independently,
not in salvoes, and in consequence the sequence of the discharges
was almost unbroken. A fearful din resulted, which was as loud as
it was penetrating, and soon began to have an irritating effect on
the nerves. The incessant clanging and clashing jarred horribly and
gave the impression that the ship was being continually hit; in fact,
those below began to think that matters were not going too well from
the constant concussions and severe jolts that were felt, until they
were reassured by the optimistic and cheering bits of news passed
down through the voice-pipes. The _Kent's_ fore-topgallant-mast now
suddenly fell over, fortunately remaining suspended in midair by the
stays; a chance shot had cut right through the heel.

From the rate of fire maintained at such a short range it was
patent that matters would soon be brought to a finish so far as
the _Nürnberg_ was concerned. By 6.5 P.M. her fore-topmast had
disappeared, she was on fire in two or three places, and her speed
was still further reduced. She turned away, as if to escape such
heavy punishment, the details of which could be plainly observed at
this short distance. Her upper deck was a veritable shambles, and
most of the guns' crews, only protected by gun shields, had been
killed. In the words of one of the _Kent's_ officers, "her foretop
and foremost funnel were so riddled that they appeared to be covered
with men"; the torn and twisted steel sticking out in every direction
caused this paradoxical illusion. Only two of her guns on the port
side remained in action.

On the other hand, the _Kent_ herself had by no means come out
unscathed. In addition to the hits already mentioned, there were many
more that had struck the ship's side and boat deck on the starboard
side, but no fires of consequence had taken place, nor had there been
any hits on the water-line of a vital character. One of the enemy's
shells burst just outside the midship casemate situated on the main
deck. Only fragments entered, but there were ten casualties, most
of them burns; one man was killed instantly, and he remained in
the same position after death with arms bent for holding a cordite
charge. A small fire was caused, and the flames passed down the
ammunition hoist to the passage below, igniting a charge which was
hooked on ready to be hoisted. Had it not been for the prompt action
of Sergeant Charles Mayes, of the Royal Marines, complete destruction
might easily have followed. With the greatest presence of mind, he
immediately isolated the cordite charges in the vicinity, closed the
sliding scuttle in the hoist, and at the same time ordered his men
to run for the nearest hoses to flood the compartment. The fire was
extinguished before it could get a hold, and for this brave deed he
was awarded the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal and an annuity of £20.

The _Nürnberg_ executed a sudden and unexpected manœuvre at 6.10 by
turning inwards as if about to ram her opponent. Continuing the turn,
however, she eventually passed astern of the _Kent_ and brought her
starboard guns into play for the first time. During this manœuvre,
and while in an end-on position, two of our shells burst almost
simultaneously on her forecastle, causing a fire and putting the guns
there out of action.

In reply to this manœuvre the _Kent_ turned to a nearly opposite
course. It will be realised from the plan that the _Kent_ was
travelling well over twice as fast as her opponent at this time, and
that her port guns were now brought into action. The courses of both
ships were again roughly parallel, the _Kent_ taking care to avoid
getting on the beam of the _Nürnberg_, which would have afforded the
latter an opportunity of using her torpedoes.

From now on the distance between the two ships gradually increased.

The German's fire was very spasmodic, and it was evident that she
could not last much longer. By 6.25 her engines were apparently
stopped, for she was barely moving through the water. She was now
badly battered and scarcely recognisable as the ship of an hour and
a half before. The _Kent_ had to turn right round again to keep
somewhere near her, and continued to fire at her with devastating

At 6.36 the enemy ceased fire altogether, the _Kent_ followed suit,
and for a short while awaited developments. Being now on fire all
along her fore part, the German ship looked a complete wreck, and
showed not a vestige of life as she lay helpless on the water. She
had a list, and was at a dead standstill. In vain the _Kent_ waited
for her to strike her colours, and so, as she showed no signs of
sinking, opened fire once more, slowly closing and keeping well
before her beam, firing at her with all guns that would bear. Not
till 6.57 did she haul down her colours, whereupon all firing ceased.

On examination it was found that nearly all the _Kent's_ boats were
splintered or smashed up by the enemy's fire, and there were only
two that could be temporarily patched up in a short space of time.
While the necessary repairs were in progress, the _Nürnberg_, which
had been heeling over more and more, turned over on her starboard
side, and in a deathlike silence disappeared beneath the surface
at 7.27 P.M. Captain J. D. Allen, in Writing of his Men, says, "No
sooner had she sunk than the _Kent's_ men displayed the same zeal and
activity in endeavouring to save life as they had done in fighting
the ship. Boats were hastily repaired and lowered, manned by men
eagerly volunteering to help. Unfortunately, the sea was rough and
the water very cold, so we only succeeded in picking up twelve men,
of whom five subsequently died." The search for the survivors was
continued till 9 A.M. It is said that even the living were attacked
by albatrosses.

While the ship was sinking a few German seamen gathered at the stern
and waved their ensign to and fro before going down with the ship.

The _Kent_ was hit thirty-seven times altogether, but suffered
no damage affecting her seaworthiness. Her wireless telegraphy
transmitting instruments were smashed to pieces by a shell, which
passed through the wireless office. She was thus unable to report the
result of her action, and caused the Commander-in-Chief some anxiety
regarding her fate. The receiving instruments, however, were intact,
so all the wireless signals made by the Commander-in-Chief inquiring
as to her whereabouts were taken in and read, though she was
powerless to reply. The upper works on the starboard side presented
a sorry spectacle, but the armour, though hit, was unpierced. Only
two shots burst against the unarmoured part of the ship's side,
one making a hole about four feet square just before the foremost
starboard 6-inch gun on the main deck, and the other a hole of about
equal size on the same side immediately below the after shelter deck.

A German officer who was saved said that they had heard by wireless
that the British had "blown up the harbour" at the Falklands, and had
fled to the west coast of Africa! He also stated that the _Nürnberg_
had not been refitted for three years, and that her boilers were in
a very bad state, which was borne out by some of them having burst
during the chase.

Each seaman 6-inch gun's crew had five Royal Naval Reservemen in it,
and their conduct speaks volumes for the all-round efficiency of the
men that the Navy has drawn from the Reserve during the War.

The total casualties in the _Kent_ amounted to 16 men, 5 of whom were
killed, whilst 3 of the wounded afterwards died of their wounds.

Commander Wharton, of the _Kent_, gives a remarkably realistic
description of the closing scenes: "It was strange and weird
all this aftermath, the wind rapidly arising from the westward,
darkness closing in, one ship heaving to the swell, well battered,
the foretop-gallant-mast gone. Of the other, nothing to be seen
but floating wreckage, with here and there a man clinging, and the
'molly-hawks' swooping by. The wind moaned, and death was in the air.
Then, see! Out of the mist loomed a great four-masted barque under
full canvas. A great ghost-ship she seemed. Slowly, majestically, she
sailed by and vanished in the night." This was the same ghost-ship
that had appeared in the middle of the action fought by the
battle-cruisers--a very fitting apparition, which upholds the legend
that one always appears at a British naval engagement. Meeting one
of the officers of this sailing vessel later on in the Dardanelles,
it was revealed that she had been out at sea so long that she was
unaware that war had even been declared, until she suddenly found
herself a spectator of two naval actions on the same day.

A silk ensign, presented to the ship by the ladies of Kent, was
torn to ribbons in the course of the day. The pieces, however, were
carefully collected by Captain J. D. Allen, and returned to the
donors, who sewed them together. This ensign now hangs in Canterbury
Cathedral. A new silk ensign was given to the ship by the ladies of
the county of Kent, and was hoisted on the first anniversary of the
battle, December 8th, 1915.



                             ... "England
      Grasped with sure hands the sceptre of the sea,
      That untamed realm of liberty which none
      Had looked upon as aught but wilderness
      Ere this, or even dreamed of as the seat
      Of power and judgment and high sovereignty
      Whereby all nations at the last should make
      One brotherhood, and war should be no more."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

The battle of the Falkland Islands was, perhaps, more like the
old-time naval engagements fought by sailing ships of the line than
any other naval battle that is likely to take place nowadays. There
were no submarines, no destroyers, no aeroplanes or Zeppelins, nor
any other of the manifold death-dealing devices that tend to make war
so much more hideous than in days gone by. In a word, it was open
fighting. Not a torpedo was fired. Not even a mine was dropped, if
the survivors who stated that the German ships did not carry them
can be believed. There were a few anxious moments when zinc cases
were seen floating on the surface ahead, glistening in the sunlight,
but they turned out to be empty cartridge cases that the enemy had
dropped overboard.

There were three very general feelings that followed on after the
battle: firstly, that we had at last been able to achieve something
of real value; secondly, that it was quite as good as a fortnight's
leave (the most one usually gets in the Navy); and thirdly, that
the war would now soon be over. In a similar manner, after a local
success on land, the soldiers at the beginning of the war frequently
hoped that it might bring matters to a conclusion. Thus do local
events in war assume an exaggerated importance.

There can be no two opinions as to the decisive nature of this
battle. In the course of a single day, the whole of this German
squadron, together with two colliers, had been destroyed with the
exception of the light cruiser _Dresden_. A comparison of the
difference in the casualties points not only to its decisiveness, but
also to the success of Admiral Sturdee's dispositions and methods of
bringing the enemy to action. It was a strategic victory.

The German Admiral found himself very much in the same position as
Admiral Cradock at Coronel, with one important difference. Cradock
sought action despite the many odds against him, whereas von Spee
tried to run when he found he was outclassed. Sir Henry Newbolt puts
the proposition admirably. After remarking that running is the game
of the losing side, he says, "You have only to consider what it would
have been worth to Germany to have had a Cradock flying his flag in
the _Scharnhorst_ on that December 8th. You can imagine him, when the
great battle-cruisers came out of harbour, signalling, 'I am going
to attack the enemy now,' and going straight to meet them at full
speed. Their steam was not yet up--he could have closed them then
and there. What a fight that would have been! No impotent scattering
flight, no hours of burning misery, with ships turning this way and
that, to bring their guns to bear upon an enemy beyond their reach;
but a desperate short-range action with every shot telling--a chance
of dealing the enemy a heavy blow before the end, and the certainty
of leaving a great tradition to the Service."

Directly the _Gneisenau_ was sunk, wireless signals were made by the
Commander-in-Chief asking where the _Dresden_ was last seen, and in
what direction she was heading at that time. It will be recollected
that she had the speed of our armoured cruisers and got clean away
without firing a single round, having been last seen by the _Glasgow_
steering away to the S.S.W. Later signals were made calling up the
_Kent_, as no one knew what had happened to her, since she was last
seen going after the _Nürnberg_. These calls were repeated again and
again without result on account of her damaged wireless, and it was
not till the afternoon of the following day that all anxieties were
allayed by the _Kent_ arriving at Port William, bringing with her the
news of another brilliant success.

The problem of the moment, therefore, was to complete the victory by
rounding up the _Dresden_ as soon as possible. Should she escape now
and take refuge in one of the innumerable inlets or channels that
abound in the unsurveyed localities of the southern part of South
America, clearly it would be a matter of great difficulty to catch
her. With his characteristic energy, Admiral Sturdee did not lose a
moment in following up his victory. The _Carnarvon_ was despatched
to escort the _Orama_ and colliers coming south from the base to
Port Stanley. The two battle-cruisers _Invincible_ and _Inflexible_
proceeded with all haste to Staten Island, and thence made a careful
search for the _Dresden_ in the numerous bays around Tierra del
Fuego. The _Glasgow_ was ordered to the Straits of Magellan in the
hope that she might intercept her, whilst the _Bristol_ searched for
both the _Dresden_ and the _Kent_ to the southward of the Falklands.
Owing to lack of coal, the _Cornwall_ was obliged to return to
harbour, and was the first ship to arrive there on December 9th; she
was followed shortly afterwards by the _Kent_.

During the night of December 8th a thick fog came on, which made
the navigation of those of our ships endeavouring to make land no
easy matter. Magnetic compasses are apt to be considerably affected
by gun-fire, and consequently the dead-reckoning positions of our
ships were by no means to be relied upon, and were not sufficiently
accurate to give confidence in approaching an indented coast like the
east side of the Falklands.

Sad to relate, not a vestige of the _Dresden_ was seen by any of our
ships that were scattered in the search for her. She was careful
to abstain from using her wireless, even though there must have
been several German supply ships in the vicinity who would urgently
require to be informed of the annihilation of their squadron. This
quest entailed travelling at high speed, so shortage of coal and
oil fuel forced our ships to return one by one. By the evening of
December 11th the whole squadron had once again reassembled at the

Congratulations now poured in from all parts of the world, and were
promulgated by the Commander-in-Chief. The Governor of the Falkland
Islands, the Hon. William Allardyce, C.M.G., visited the flagship
and congratulated Admiral Sturdee, together with the whole of our
squadron, in glowing terms on behalf of the colony. Admiral Sturdee
issued an interesting Memorandum, which is given _in toto_, calling
attention to the urgent necessity for completing the victory by
running the _Dresden_ to earth. These messages are given in Part III.

Casualties in any decisive modern naval engagement are frequently
very one-sided, one fleet suffering enormous losses whilst the other
escapes with comparative immunity. This battle proved no exception to
this rule. In the British squadron, the _Invincible_ and _Cornwall_
had no casualties, though they both had a big share of hits. The
_Carnarvon_ and _Bristol_ were untouched. The _Inflexible_ had 1 man
killed and 3 slightly wounded. The _Glasgow_ had 1 man killed and
4 wounded through a single unlucky shot. The heaviest casualties
occurred in the _Kent_, who had 5 men killed and 11 wounded, 3 of
whom subsequently succumbed to their wounds; most of these were
caused by the bursting of one shell. She was hit thirty-seven times,
and went in to a much closer range than the remainder of our ships.
The squadron, therefore, incurred a total loss of 10 men killed
and 15 wounded, whilst the Germans lost some 2,260 men all told.
The crews of their ships totalled 2,432 officers and men, and were
estimated as follows:

  _Scharnhorst_    872         _Gneisenau_     835
  _Nürnberg_       384         _Leipzig_       341

The prize bounty amounted to the sum of £12,160, to be divided
amongst the officers and crews of the _Invincible_, _Inflexible_,
_Carnarvon_, _Cornwall_, _Kent_, and _Glasgow_, being calculated
at the usual rate of £5 per head. In the course of the Prize Court
proceedings the following reference to the German Admiral Count von
Spee was made in regard to his action at Coronel: "Whatever others
might have thought of this twist of the lion's tail, it appeared that
the German Admiral was under no delusion.... It was perhaps as well
to put on record that the German Admiral, when he took his fleet into
Valparaiso, refused to drink the toast of 'Damnation to the British
Navy,' and apparently had a premonition that his end was very near."

The prisoners of war were all sent home in the _Macedonia_ and the
storeship _Crown of Galicia_, but not before Admiral Sturdee had
given them to understand in the firmest possible manner that if any
man was found tampering with the ship's fittings, or was discovered
out of that portion of the ship allocated to his use, he would be
very severely dealt with.

The few days spent at Port Stanley after the battle will always live
in the memory of those who were present. They were days full of hard
work, combined with visits to friends and interesting discussions on
individual experiences. The interest of meeting, boarding, and going
over other ships to view the shot holes may be imagined. Reports and
plans had to be made out. Several ships had to be heeled over to get
at the damaged part, and presented a comic appearance, the _Cornwall_
being so far over as to look positively dangerous. All ships had to
coal and were busy at it night and day. Few will forget those night
coalings--ugh!--in a temperature of forty degrees, with a bitterly
cold wind accompanied almost invariably by occasional squalls of hail
and rain.

Those cheers we gave one another will not be forgotten; they rang
true, being full of pent-up enthusiasm, and, as Mr. John Masefield
says, "went beyond the guard of the English heart."

Unfortunately, subsequent events have made it impossible to recall
this overwhelming victory without a feeling of sadness due to the
loss of the gallant _Invincible_ in the battle of Jutland. One
description of that battle says that four of her men succeeded in
boarding a raft, and as one of our ships passed, taking them at
first for Huns, the narrator adds, "The four got up on their feet
and cheered like blazes. It was the finest thing I have ever seen."
Most of her crew were lost, but we have at least the satisfaction of
knowing they died as heroes.



      "Mother and sweetheart, England; ...
      ... thy love was ever wont
      To lift men up in pride above themselves
      To do great deeds which of themselves alone
      They could not; thou hast led the unfaltering feet
      Of even thy meanest heroes down to death,
      Lifted poor knights to many a great emprise,
      Taught them high thoughts, and though they kept their souls
      Lowly as little children, bidden them lift
      Eyes unappalled by all the myriad stars
      That wheel around the great white throne of God."

            --ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

The naval man is often confronted with the question: "What does
it feel like to be in an action at sea?" This is undoubtedly very
difficult to answer in anything approaching an adequate manner. There
are various reasons for hesitancy in reply. Broadly speaking, the
answer depends on two main factors, environment and temperament, but
there are many minor points depending on the experience, education,
and character of the man in question that at the same time vitally
affect it. An attempt to generalise, therefore, is sure to be open to
criticism. It is consequently with much diffidence that the following
ideas are set forth, in the hope that they may assist the landsman to
appreciate, in some slight degree, the various points of view of the
officers and men who fight in our warships.

There is obviously a wide difference in the outlook, and consequently
in the working of the mind, of the man behind a gun, or in any other
position where he can see and hear how matters are progressing, and
the man buried in the bowels of the ship, who is stoking, working
machinery, or engaged in the supply of ammunition. When once the
action has begun, the former will probably never give a moment's
thought to his own safety or that of the ship he is in, whilst the
latter, during any intervals that may occur in his work, can only
think of how things are going with his ship. Lastly, there is a
very divergent view between the man who knows he is going into a
battle such as that fought off the Falkland Islands, where our ships
possessed a marked superiority, and the man who was present, say, at
Coronel, where the conditions were reversed.

During an action, the captain of a man-of-war is usually in the
conning-tower, where he is surrounded by several inches of steel.
A good all-round view is obtained through a slit between the roof
and the walls. From this point of vantage he can communicate with
the gunnery control positions, the gun positions, engine-rooms,
torpedo-rooms, and, in fact, with every portion of the complex
machine represented by a modern warship. Having spent a number of
years at sea, he has frequently pictured to himself what a naval
engagement would be like, but it is very problematical whether he has
ever taken the trouble to analyse what his own feelings would be; in
any case, his imaginations were probably both far from the reality.
When approaching the scene of action he most likely gives a passing
thought to his kith and kin, but his responsibility will be too
great to admit of his feelings taking hold of him, and his thoughts
will afterwards be concentrated entirely on the work in hand. During
the action he is watching every movement with the utmost keenness,
giving a curt order where necessary as he wipes from his face the
salt water splashed up by a short projectile. His nerves and even
his muscles are strung up to a high pitch of tensity, and he loses
himself altogether in working out the problem before him.

The gunnery officer in the control position on the foremast is,
of course, in a much more exposed position; without any armour
protection to speak of. Doubtless there flashes across his mind a
hope that he will come through without being picked off by a stray
shot. The thoughts of the men with him, and those of the men working
the range-finders, who also have practically no protection, will
probably be very similar to his. But when approaching the enemy, all
their attention is needed to acquire as much information as possible,
in order to get an idea of his approximate course and speed. Later,
all their faculties are exercised in determining the corrections to
be made to the sights of their guns as regards range and deflection,
so as to hit the enemy, and in giving the orders to fire.

The navigation officer, notebook in hand, is with the captain in the
conning-tower, and his thoughts are not far different. His attention
is riveted on the course of the ship and any impending manœuvre that
he may presume to be imminent or advisable. In some of the older
ships, where the quartermaster steers from the conning-tower, his
observation is often made more irksome by salt-water spray getting
into his eyes and preventing him from seeing the compass clearly.

With the commander and others who may be below in the ammunition
passages in the depths of the ship, the one thought obsessing the
mind to the exclusion of almost everything else will be: "What is
happening, and how are we getting on?" Passing up ammunition is no
sinecure; it is invariably a warm job down below. Stripped to the
waist, hard at it, and perspiring freely, many a joke is cracked
in much the same spirit as inspires Tommy in the trenches. Now and
again a bit of news comes down and is passed along like lightning
from mouth to mouth. For example, in one case a shell hits one of our
ship's funnels, and it has gone by the board with a frightful din,
as if hell were suddenly let loose; the news is passed down to the
commander in the ammunition passage, to which he cheerily replies:
"That's all right; we have plenty left, haven't we?" Again, a shell
strikes the hull of the ship, making her quiver fore and aft and
almost stop her roll; naturally the effect of this is felt down below
far more than on deck, and though some may wonder whether it has
struck on the waterline or not, there is merely a casual remark that
the enemy is shooting a bit better.

The engineer officers in the engine-rooms are constantly going to
and fro along the greasy steel floors, watching every bearing and
listening intently to every sound of the machinery in much the same
way as a motorist listens to hear if his engine is misfiring. They,
too, are longing for news of how the fight is going on as they
keenly watch for any alteration of the engine-room telegraphs, or of
the hundred and one dials showing the working of the various engines
under their charge.

The stokers, stripped to a gantline, and digging out for daylight,
are in much the same position as those passing up ammunition, save
that they seldom, if ever, get a lull in their work in which to
indulge their thoughts. Those trimming the coal in the boxlike
bunkers have perhaps the most unenviable task. Breathing in a thick
haze of coal dust, black from head to foot, they work on at full
pressure in these veritable black holes, without the chance of
hearing any news of what is going on "up topsides."

Every man in the ship is working at his appointed station during
an action--even the cooks are busy assisting with the supply of
ammunition--everyone is behind armour, or below the waterline, with
the exception of those few whose duties do not permit of it. This
fact accounts for the comparatively few casualties in the ships that
come out the victors in a sea fight, in spite of the tremendous havoc
done by a shell bursting in the vicinity of cast steel, which throws
up multitudes of splinter in all directions.

The guns' crews are all working at their respective weapons,
sometimes wading in water if a heavy swell falls short close to
them. Yet they see the result of their work, and every bit of damage
done to the enemy is invariably put down to the handiwork of their
individual gun. They may be said to be having the time of their lives
in a successful action. During a lull, the enemy's fire is heavily
criticised; suggestions as to the corrections that should be applied
to his gunsights in order to get a hit are calmly made as they watch
the splashes of his projectiles, and are as soon contradicted by some
other authority who suggests something different. When their own ship
is hit a remark is made to the effect--"That was a good 'un!" from
the coldly calculating point of view of the expert. Unaccountable
as it may seem, during artillery fire at sea there is usually this
irrepressible desire to figure out the corrections needed for the
enemy's gunsights in order that he may register a direct hit.
Several of our naval officers testified to this strange phenomenon
at Gallipoli, when undergoing a bombardment from Turkish forts and
batteries, and added that they were held fascinated in doing so.

On the other hand, when a shell goes beyond the ship, at the first
shrill whiz-z-z overhead, one calculates deliberately that the enemy
will shortly lower his range, and, discretion being the better part
of valour, the welcome shelter of a turret, casemate, or conning
tower is speedily sought. It is curious that if the shells are
falling short there is no such concern for the safety of one's skin.
The writer has seen a group of officers having a spirited argument
as to the corrections that should be made to the sights of a Turkish
gun whose shell fell a few hundred yards short of the ship. It was
not till one screamed past their heads, pitching in the water on the
far side, that they thought of taking cover. The analogy does not
apparently hold good to the same extent in the sister Service, for on
terra firma the range is registered with fair accuracy, and it is
usual to scuttle off to a dug-out as soon as Beachy Bill or Long Tom
opens fire.

A shell from a heavy gun whistling close overhead seems to recall
something of the physical emotion experienced as a child, when one
ventured too high in a swing. There is a sort of eerie feeling
in the interior which seems to struggle upward to one's throat,
thereby causing a throttling sensation; and this seems to take place
continuously, though it diminishes slightly as time goes on.

Another feature that is perhaps worth mentioning is what the sailor
calls "getting a cheap wash." This occurs incessantly in a naval
action, for a large shell fired at a long range falling into the
water close to a ship will throw up a solid wall of water, often two
or three hundred feet in height, so that it is no uncommon thing to
get frequently soused. In the Falkland Islands battle the men right
up in the control tops on the masts of the battle-cruisers complained
of being unable to work their instruments satisfactorily owing to
frequent drenchings by spray.

The strain that is undergone during a naval action can easily be
imagined, though most men will agree that they are unconscious of it
at the time; it is not until everything is over and finished with
that its effects materialise. In the Navy every officer and man
bears the burden of responsibility, and frequently it is one upon
which may depend the safety of the lives of his shipmates. He may
have to execute a manœuvre of vital importance--close a watertight
compartment, put out a fire caused by a high explosive shell--or
do any of the hundred and one duties that are necessary in a
man-of-war. Newton's law of gravitation tells us that to every action
there is an equal and opposite reaction. This fundamental principle
undoubtedly holds good in the working of the human mind. The old
example that a piece of cord, gradually stretched tighter and tighter
until its limit of elasticity is attained, sags when the force is
removed, is a very good parallel indeed of what takes place during
and after action so far as the average fighting man is concerned.
His mind, and all his faculties, have been extended to their full
capacity in concentrating on the work in hand, in seeing that
there is no sign of a hitch anywhere, in forestalling any possible
accident, and in thinking out his own line of action in any given
circumstance that may arise. The man who has been toiling physically
has also been strung up to the highest possible pitch; the very best
that is in him has been called forth, and he has in all probability
never done better work, or striven so hard in his life before.

The bugle call "Cease fire" does not necessarily imply that all is
over; it may only mean a temporary cessation or lull in the action;
but when the "Secure" is sounded, there is no mistaking that the
fight is finished. This is followed by the "Disperse," when all guns
are secured, ammunition returned, and all the magazines and shell
rooms locked up. Then a large number of the men are free; orders are
given to the engine-room department regarding the speed required,
enabling some of the stokers told off as relief parties and employed
in trimming coal to be released.

As a general rule, however, the guns are kept manned and speed is
not reduced after a modern naval action, so that the number of
men released from duty is comparatively small. Perhaps the enemy
is sinking, when the seamen will be engaged in turning out boats
preparatory to saving life. The men who are unemployed watch the
sinking of an enemy ship with very different sentiments. All
experience a glow of satisfaction, and most men will pity the poor
wretches who are drowning or clinging more or less hopelessly to
floating pieces of wreckage. A few are entirely callous, deeming such
emotions a sign of weakness in view of the many atrocities committed
by the enemy. This scarcely applied after the battle of the Falkland
Islands, where the "Hymn of Hate" and other German propaganda
fostering feelings of enmity had not embittered men's minds.

Lastly, there comes the utter physical weariness both of mind and
body, attended by an intense longing for food, drink, and sleep,
accompanied by the pleasant thought that the war will now soon be
over. Officers crowd into the wardroom to get a drink and something
to eat. The galley fire will be out, for the chef has been passing up
ammunition, so no hot food, tea, or cocoa will be available for some
little time. A walk round the ship reveals men lying in all sorts of
impossible postures, too done up to bother about eating; others are
crowding round the canteen, or getting any food that they can on the
mess deck.

After the battle of the Falkland Islands one of the boy stewards
who had been passing up shell during the action was found in the
ammunition passage, "dead to the world," lying athwart an old
washtub. There he was, in that stale and stuffy atmosphere, in the
most uncomfortable position imaginable, fast asleep, completely worn
out from sheer exhaustion, with his head and arms dangling over one
side of the tub.

A large number have to continue their labours on watch in the engine
room or on deck, in spite of having the greatest difficulty in
keeping their eyes open. The extreme tension and strain is over, and
it requires a strong effort to resist the temptation to let things
slide and relapse into a state of inanition.

That the men brace themselves to grapple with their further duties
in a spirit which allows no sign of reluctance or fatigue to
show itself, does them infinite credit. They must look forward
nevertheless to the moment when the ship will pass safely into some
harbour guarded by net-defence from submarine attack, where all
the guns' crews are not required to be constantly awake at their
guns, and fires can be put out. Then, after coaling, prolonged and
undisturbed sleep may be indulged in to make up for the lost hours,
and "peace, perfect peace," will reign--for a while.



The British Public and our gallant Allies have no doubt fully
appreciated the commercial importance of the battle of the Falkland
Islands. The relief that was thereby given to our shipping and trade
not only in South American waters, but throughout our overseas
Empire, can only be realised by those who have large interests
therein. British trade with South America was first upset by the
exploits of the _Karlsruhe_, later on prestige was still more
affected by the Coronel disaster, and, finally, most of all by the
expectation of the arrival of von Spee's squadron in the Atlantic.
The freedom since enjoyed by our merchant shipping on all the
sea-trade routes of the world was in great part due to the success of
this portion of our Navy, the blockade having been firmly established
by our powerful fleet in home waters. The toll of ships sunk and
captured in the early months of the war would have been much greater,
trade would have been seriously dislocated for the time being, and
the pinch of a shortage in food supplies would probably have been
felt had it not been for this very opportune victory.

What were von Spee's intentions after the destruction of Admiral
Cradock's squadron we shall probably never know, but it is evident
that he could not remain in the Pacific; it is fairly certain, also,
that he intended to seize the Falkland Islands if he found them
insufficiently guarded, as he had reason to infer was the case.
Obviously the most tempting course then open to him, whether he took
the Falklands or not, was to hold up our trade along the whole of the
east coast of South America. But the possibility of doing this was
diminished by his fatal delay after Coronel, before making a move.
Had he acted at once he might have been able to do this with impunity
for at least a month, by dividing up his squadron into small units.
His coal and other supplies would have been easily assured through
the armed merchant cruisers _Prinz Eitel Friedrich_ and _Kronprinz
Wilhelm_, organising the colliers and shoreships along these coasts.
The _Kronprinz Wilhelm_ had been operating for months past on the
north coast of South America in conjunction with the _Karlsruhe_, and
therefore already knew the tricks of this trade.

Had he been permitted to pursue this policy, von Spee was inevitably
bound to touch on the delicate subject of neutrality in arranging
supplies for so numerous a squadron. Now, according to the laws laid
down by Article 5 of the Hague Conference, 1907, "belligerents are
forbidden to use neutral ports and waters as a base of operations
against their adversaries." By Article 12 it is laid down that
in default of any other special provisions in the legislation of
a neutral Power, belligerent warships are forbidden to remain in
the ports, roadsteads, or territorial waters of the said Power for
more than twenty-four hours, except in special cases covered by the
Convention. It is left to the neutral to make regulations as to the
hospitality it will afford, and those laid down by Brazil were that a
belligerent vessel was only allowed to visit one of their ports once
in three months for the purpose of obtaining supplies.

Being aware of these conditions, and that neutrality could not be
imposed upon to an unlimited extent, it follows that von Spee would
have been dependent in a great measure on supply ships which were
able to evade the scrutiny of the neutral authorities--a precarious
state of existence. Coal would be his prime necessity, and he might
have hoped to secure a supply of this from captured colliers, but he
could not depend upon it for such a large number of ships. Meanwhile,
however, very considerable damage might have been done to our
shipping, and it is generally believed the Germans were optimistic
enough to hope that England would be brought to her knees from
starvation by being cut off from both North and South American ports
during this period, although there was really no ground whatsoever
for such a surmise. Perhaps we shall in the future be careful not
to frame so many laws for the conduct of war, since the Power that
neglects these laws rides roughshod over her more conscientious

Such a scheme may have been the natural outcome of von Spee's
success at Coronel. On the other hand, it is impossible to state
with certainty that he did not intend to go ultimately to the Cape
of Good Hope or some other part of Africa, but the pros and cons
have already been discussed, and it scarcely appears probable. Von
Spee, of course, had no notion of the prompt measure taken by our
Admiralty in dispatching two powerful battle-cruisers of high speed
to these waters without loss of time and in complete secrecy, though
he must have concluded that no time would be lost in sending out
reinforcements. Apparently his judgment was here at fault; hence the
proposed attack on our colony in the Falkland Islands, the capture
of which would have yielded him coal for his squadron's immediate

Von Spee is said to have been over-persuaded by his staff to
undertake this latter venture. His movements here certainly led to
the conclusion that he had no fixed plan. When the _Invincible_
reached Pernambuco on her way home, there was a strong rumour that
three colliers had been waiting off the coast for the _Scharnhorst_
and _Gneisenau_; this points to the capture of the Falklands not
being included in the original plan. Admiral Sturdee searched the
area for these ships but found nothing.

Both the British and German squadrons refrained from using wireless,
and so had no knowledge of their proximity during the first week in
December. Had the German ships passed our squadron whilst coaling at
the Falklands, they would in all likelihood have separated, and would
then have had a free hand--for some time, at any rate--along the east
coast, whilst our ships would have gone round the Horn and searched
for them in vain in the Pacific. The first intimation of their having
eluded our squadron would have been that much of our shipping would
be reported overdue in England from South American ports (for von
Spee would most assuredly have avoided approaching within sight of
land). This would very probably have been put down in the first few
instances to the depredations of the _Karlsruhe_, whose fate was at
this time quite unknown. The _Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_ were
sufficiently powerful to cope with anything which von Spee thought
was likely to be in these seas. As a matter of fact, however, the
battle-cruiser _Princess Royal_ was in North American waters at this
time, having left England in secrecy soon after the _Invincible_ and
_Inflexible_ were dispatched south.

In further support of this theory of what was the German Admiral's
plan of campaign, it may be mentioned that a fully laden German
collier was forced to intern at a South American port south of the
Plate in order to avoid capture by the _Carnarvon_ and _Cornwall_,
who were searching the coast there just after the battle of the
Falklands took place. Another collier, the _Mera_, put back into
Montevideo very hurriedly and interned herself, and lastly, the
tender _Patagonia_ ended her career in like manner. The presence of
all these ships in this locality is evidence of the organisation
arranged for the supply of the German squadron along this coast, and
precludes the idea of its going to Africa.

There is evidence to show that von Spee picked up naval reservists
for his squadron at Valparaiso, but there is none to confirm the
rumour that he proposed to occupy the Falkland Islands, retaining
a garrison there after they had been captured. He could never have
hoped to occupy or to hold them for any length of time. Baron von
Maltzhan, the manager of a large sheep farm in Chile, was selected to
take command of an expedition consisting of an armed force of some
500 men, whose function was to assist in the capture of the Falkland
Islands, but not necessarily to remain on as a permanent garrison.

The damage that can be done to merchant shipping and trade by a
single hostile ship has been demonstrated on more than one occasion
during this war. If, therefore, it is presumed that the revised
German programme was to capture the Falkland Islands, thus aiming a
blow at British prestige, and then to scatter in the manner suggested
so as to hamper or cripple our trade with the New World as long as
possible, it will then be seen how opportune a victory this was for
the British nation.

Had von Spee escaped being brought to action, it seems probable that
he would have endeavoured to work his way home in preference to the
alternative of internment.

In brief, then, this is a rough outline of events that "might"--one
could almost use the word "would"--have taken place, had not such
prompt steps been taken by the Admiralty to meet him wherever he
went by superior forces. Von Spee knew he was being cornered, and is
reported to have said so at Valparaiso.

If additional proof of the decision of the Germans to bring about
this war, whatever the cost, were required, it is to be found in
the testimony of a captured German reservist, who has already been
mentioned in this book. He was German interpreter to the Law Courts
at Sydney. This man told a naval surgeon who was examining him after
he had been rescued, when he was still in a very shaken condition
and could have had no object in lying, that he had been called up by
the German Admiralty on _June 26th_. In company with several other
reservists, therefore, he took passage in a sailing ship bound for
Valparaiso, where he ultimately joined the _Leipzig_. This tale is
corroborated by the fact that von Spee put into Valparaiso to pick up
naval reservists in accordance with instructions from Germany, which
perhaps may have been the cause of his delay in coming round the Horn
after defeating Admiral Cradock. Other prisoners informed us that
they had been cruising up and down the Chilean coast in order to meet
a storeship from Valparaiso with these reservists on board, so as to
avoid being reported. The latter, however, never turned up, so the
Germans were obliged to put in there a second time.

The murder of the Archduke Francis Ferdinand of Austria and of his
wife, the alleged cause of this war, took place at Serajevo, the
capital of Bosnia, two days after this man was called up by German
Admiralty orders, namely, on Sunday, June 28th, 1914.

A German newspaper, in speaking of the success of Admiral von Spee
at Coronel, also admirably sums up the issue of the battle of the
Falkland Islands: "The superiority of our fleet in no way detracts
from the glory of our victory, for the very essence of the business
of a strategist is the marshalling of a superior fleet at the right
place and at the right moment."

                                "Not unto us,"
      Cried Drake, "not unto us--but unto Him
      Who made the sea, belongs our England now!
      Pray God that heart and mind and soul we prove
      Worthy among the nations of this hour
      And this great victory, whose ocean fame
      Shall wash the world with thunder till that day
      When there is no more sea, and the strong cliffs
      Pass like a smoke, and the last peal of it
      Sounds thro' the trumpet."

              ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).



      "Now to the Strait Magellanus they came
      And entered in with ringing shouts of joy.
      Nor did they think there was a fairer strait
      In all the world than this which lay so calm
      Between great silent mountains crowned with snow,
      Unutterably lonely
      From Pole to Pole, one branching bursting storm
      Of world-wide oceans, where the huge Pacific
      Roared greetings to the Atlantic."

              ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

The failure to round up the _Dresden_ directly after the battle was
naturally a great disappointment, but our recent success prevented
anyone from feeling it too keenly. Hearing that the _Dresden_ had
suddenly put into Punta Arenas (Magellan Straits) to coal, Admiral
Sturdee immediately ordered the _Inflexible_, _Glasgow_, and
_Bristol_ to go in pursuit of her in that direction. Sailing at 4
A.M. on December 13th, the _Bristol_ arrived there the following
afternoon to find that the _Dresden_ had left the previous evening at
10 P.M., steaming away westwards. It was tantalising to have got so
close to her, for she was not heard of again for months after this.
All our ships now joined in the search, during which every possible
bay and inlet was thoroughly examined. A glance at a large-scale
map of this locality will show the difficulties that had to be
surmounted. There were thousands of possible hiding-places amongst
the channels and islands, many of which were quite unsurveyed; and,
at first sight, it appeared nearly impossible to investigate all of
these in anything short of a lifetime.

The Admiralty now ordered the _Invincible_ to go to Gibraltar. On
leaving harbour on the 14th, the _Cornwall_ gave her a rousing
send-off by "cheering ship," to which she enthusiastically replied.
Admiral Sturdee sailed from Port Stanley on December 16th, to the
great regret of the remainder of the squadron. He called in at
Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro, and Pernambuco _en route_, and was
received in almost the same spirit in which Nelson was acclaimed by
the Ligurian Republic at Genoa in 1798.

Rear-Admiral Stoddart in the _Carnarvon_ now took over the command of
our squadron. The _Inflexible_ continued the search for some days,
after which she also was ordered off and sailed for the Mediterranean
on December 24th. The remainder of our ships were scattered on both
sides of South America and around Cape Horn.

Few people have the opportunity of realising the beauty and grandeur
of the scenery in this part of the world, which resembles nothing
so much as the fjords of Norway in the winter time. The depth
of water allows ships to navigate the narrowest channels, where
glacier-bounded mountains rise precipitously from the waters edge.
Once on rounding a headland we came upon a most unusual sight: some
forty albatrosses were sitting on the water. Our arrival caused them
considerable inconvenience and alarm, and it was the quaintest
sight to see these huge birds with their enormous spread of wing
endeavouring to rise, a feat which many of them were unable to
achieve even after several attempts. All these "fjords" abound in
seals--chiefly of the hairy variety--sea-lions, and every imaginable
kind of penguin. Long ropes of seaweed, usually known amongst the
seafaring world as kelp, grow on the submerged rocks, and are an
invaluable guide to the sailor as they indicate the rocky patches.
They grow to an enormous length, and are to be seen floating on the
face of the water; in fact, we had many an anxious though profitable
moment in these unsurveyed localities owing to their sudden and
unexpected appearance. At intervals a sliding glacier would enshroud
the face of a mountain in a dense mist formed by myriads of
microscopic particles of ice, which would be followed by wonderful
prismatic effects as the sun forced his way through, transforming
the scene into a veritable fairyland of the most gorgeous lights
and shades. Towards sunset the rose-pink and deep golden shafts of
light on the snow-covered peaks beggared all description, and forced
the onlooker literally to gasp in pure ecstasy. Only the pen of a
brilliant word-painter could do justice to the wealth of splendour of
this ever-changing panorama.

The true Patagonian is nearly extinct, and the Indians inhabiting
Tierra del Fuego are of a low social order, very primitive, and wild
in appearance. We sometimes passed some of these in their crude
dug-out canoes, which they handle most dexterously. Considering the
severity of the climate, the temperature of which runs round about
40° Fahr., they wear remarkably few clothes, and the children
frequently none at all, which accounts for the hardiness of those
that survive.

The difference between the east and west territory of the Straits
of Magellan is very marked. The Atlantic end is bordered by sandy
beaches and green, undulating slopes backed by mountains, and the
weather at this time of year is generally fine and calm; whereas the
Pacific side is devoid of all vegetation, glaciers and mountain crags
covered with snow descend nearly perpendicularly to the Straits, and
it is no exaggeration to say that it is possible to go almost close
alongside these high walls without any damage to the ship. Here the
weather is altogether different, frequent blizzards are attended
by rough weather, with heavy seas off the entrance, and it is far
colder. The cause of this contrast lies in the Andes, which extend
down to Cape Horn and break the force of the strong westerly winds
(the roaring forties) that prevail in these latitudes.

On Christmas Day, 1914, the two battle-cruisers were on their way to
Europe. The _Carnarvon_ spent the day coaling in Possession Bay in
the Straits of Magellan. We were also there in the _Cornwall_, but
were more fortunate in having finished coaling the previous evening;
however, we went to sea during the afternoon. It was scarcely what
one would term a successful day, for the ship had to be cleaned,
and it was impossible to decorate the mess deck, as is the custom.
Nevertheless, we had a cheerful Service, which was followed by Holy
Communion, and for the mid-day dinner there was plenty of salt pork
and plum-duff! Unfortunately, as has been related, we were not to
get our mail or our plum-puddings for many a long day. The _Kent_,
_Glasgow_, _Bristol_, and _Orama_ had poor weather off the coast of
Chile, which did not help to enliven their Christmas. The _Otranto_,
perhaps, was the best off, having recently come from Sierra Leone,
where she had filled up with provisions.

The _Cornwall_ was the next ship to be ordered away. We left Port
Stanley on January 3rd, 1915, and sailed for England to have the
damage to our side properly repaired in dry dock.

It would be tedious to follow in detail the wanderings of the
remainder of our ships, who proceeded with colliers in company to
ferret out every nook and cranny in this indented coastline. The
_Newcastle_ and some Japanese cruisers operated farther to the north
along the Pacific side. Admiral Stoddart's squadron must have covered
many thousands of miles with practically no respite in this onerous
and fatiguing duty. Their lot was by no means enviable, they were
perpetually under way, except when they stopped to replenish with
coal, their mails were of necessity very irregular, and they were
seldom able to get fresh food. Imagine, then, with what joy they
ultimately found the termination of their labours in the sinking of
the _Dresden_!



      "Tell them it is El Draque," he said, "who lacks
      The time to parley; therefore it will be well
      They strike at once, for I am in great haste."
      There, at the sound of that renowned name,
      Without a word down came their blazoned flag!
      Like a great fragment of the dawn it lay,
      Crumpled upon their decks....

              ALFRED NOYES (_Drake_).

There is remarkably little to tell about this action, which concludes
the exploits of our ships in these waters. The whole fight only
lasted a few minutes altogether--a poor ending to a comparatively
fruitless career, considering the time that the _Dresden_ was at
large. During the months of January and February, 1915, the search
for her had been carried on unremittingly; but though she had managed
successfully to evade us, she was so pressed that she was unable to
harass or make attacks on our shipping. That she never once attempted
to operate along the main trade routes shows the energy with which
this quest was prosecuted. From the time of her escape on December
8th till the day on which she sank, the _Dresden_ only destroyed
two sailing vessels. She, however, made such thorough arrangements
to cover her movements that no reliable information as to her
whereabouts ever leaked through to our squadron. Rumours were legion,
and there were "people who were prepared to swear that they had seen
her." The two places they mentioned were practically uncharted and
were found to be full of hidden dangers. Acting on this "reliable"
information, the localities were examined by our cruisers early in
March, but it was found out afterwards that the _Dresden_ had never
visited either of them.

The armed merchantman _Prinz Eitel Friedrich_ had been much more
successful, and had captured and destroyed ten ships during these two
months. Many, it is true, were sailing vessels, but none the less
anxiety began to make itself felt in local shipping circles, and the
whole position once more became uneasy and disturbed. Early in March
the _Prinz Eitel Friedrich_ arrived at Newport News in the United
States with a number of prisoners on board, which had been taken
from these prizes. She was badly in need of refit, and her engines
required repairs. On learning that one of her victims was an American
vessel, public indignation was hotly aroused, and but little sympathy
was shown for her wants. Her days of marauding were brought to an
end, for the Americans resolutely interned her.

On March 8th the _Kent_, in the course of her patrol duties, sighted
the _Dresden_ in latitude 37 S., longitude 80 W. It was a calm, misty
morning, which made it impossible to see any distance. During the
afternoon the haze suddenly lifted, and there was the _Dresden_, only
ten miles away. The _Kent_ seems to have sighted the _Dresden_ first,
and steamed full speed towards her for a few minutes before being
observed. This interval, however, did not allow her to get within gun
range. Of course the _Dresden_, being a far newer and faster vessel,
soon increased the distance between them, and after a five-hours'
chase, finally escaped under cover of the darkness. This was the
first time she had been sighted by a British warship since December
8th. It was noticed that she was standing well out of the water,
and this chase must have used up a lot of coal. It was obvious,
therefore, that she would require coal very shortly, and at a no very
distant port.

The _Kent_ proceeded to Coronel to coal, informing the _Glasgow_
and _Orama_. A search was organised, and, as a result of a wireless
signal from the _Glasgow_, the _Kent_ rejoined her not far from where
the _Dresden_ had been sighted. The _Glasgow_, _Kent_, and _Orama_
caught sight of their quarry at 9 A.M. on March 14th, 1915, near Juan
Fernandez Island. Smoke was seen to be issuing from the _Dresden's_
funnels as our ships closed in on her from different directions. She
was taken completely by surprise, and it was evident that there was
no possible escape for her. As our ships approached she kept her
guns trained on them, but did not attempt to open fire. Then all
three British ships fired together, to which the German replied. The
official statement tersely reports: "An action ensued. After five
minutes' fighting the _Dresden_ hauled down her colours and displayed
the white flag."

Immediately the white flag was hoisted, all the British ships ceased
firing. The crew of the _Dresden_ then began to abandon her in
haste, and were to be seen assembling on shore. Just as the last
party of men were leaving the ship, the Germans made arrangements
to blow up the foremost magazine. Not long afterwards there was a
loud explosion, and the ship began to sink slowly, bows first. The
_Dresden's_ officers and men had all got well clear of the ship.
An hour later, at a quarter-past twelve, she disappeared below the
surface, flying the white flag and the German ensign which had been
re-hoisted at the last. All the surgeons and sick-berth staff of the
British ships now attended to the German wounded, who were afterwards
conveyed in the _Orama_ to Valparaiso, where they were landed and
taken to the German hospital.

Such a tame finish to their labours naturally caused disappointment
amongst our ship's companies, who expected the enemy to uphold the
traditions of Vice-Admiral von Spee by fighting to the last. The main
object, however, had been achieved, the victory gained by Admiral
Sturdee at the battle of the Falkland Islands had at last been made
complete, and our ships in South American waters were now free to
proceed on other useful service.






September 14th, 1914

The Secretary of the Admiralty communicates the following for
publication. It is a narrative of the action in South Atlantic on
September 14th, 1914, between H.M.S. _Carmania_ and the German armed
merchant ship _Cap Trafalgar_:--

  Shortly after 11 A.M. we made out a vessel, and on nearer
  approach we saw there were three vessels, one a large liner,
  the others colliers. The latter had derricks topped, and were
  probably working when we hove in sight. Before we had raised
  their hulls they had separated, and were making off in different
  directions. The large vessel was, apparently, about our own
  size, with two funnels painted to represent a Castle liner.
  After running away for a little while, the large steamer turned
  to starboard and headed towards us. She was then steering about
  south, and we were steering about south-west. The weather was
  fine and sunny, with a moderate breeze from the north-east. Our
  speed was 16 knots, and his apparently about 18. At 8,500 yards
  we fired a shot across his bows, and he immediately opened fire
  from his starboard after gun. We opened with all the port guns,
  and the firing became general. We were now well within range, and
  most of his shots went over. Consequently our rigging, masts,
  funnels, derricks, and ventilators all suffered. He was then
  well open on our port side. All our port guns and his starboard
  guns engaged, and firing became rapid. Owing to the decreasing
  range, his machine guns were becoming particularly dangerous, so
  the ship was turned away from him and the range opened. The ship
  continued to turn until the starboard battery was engaged.

  Two of our hits were seen to take his deck steam pipes. He was
  well on fire forward, and had a slight list to starboard. One of
  his shells had passed through the cabin, under our forebridge,
  and although it did not burst, it started a fire which became
  rapidly worse, no water being available owing to the fire main
  having been shot through. The chemical fire extinguishers proving
  of very little use, the fire got such a firm hold that the
  forebridge had to be abandoned, and the ship conned from aft,
  using the lower steering position. At this time the enemy was on
  our starboard, with a heavy list to starboard, and at 1.50 P.M.,
  or one hour and forty minutes from the firing of the first shot,
  she capsized to starboard and went down bows first, with colours
  flying. It was some time before we got the fire under, which
  necessitated keeping the ship before the wind, and consequently
  we could not go to the assistance of the survivors, some of whom
  got away in boats and were picked up by one of the colliers.

  The enemy before sinking was in wireless communication with some
  German vessel, and as smoke was seen in the northern horizon and
  the signalman thought he could make out a cruiser's funnels, we
  went off full speed to the southward. When we were in touch with
  the _Cornwall_ all we asked him was to meet us, as the ship was
  unseaworthy and practically all communications and navigational
  instruments were destroyed, rendering the conning and navigation
  of the ship difficult and uncertain.

  On the 15th, at 4.30 P.M., the _Bristol_ picked us up and
  escorted us until relieved by the _Cornwall_, who took us on to
  an anchorage to effect temporary repairs.

  The following were decorated for their services during this

  CAPTAIN NOEL GRANT, Royal Navy, awarded the C.B. He commanded and
  manœuvred the _Carmania_ throughout the action, and handled the
  ship with rare skill and judgment.

  ACTING-COMMANDER JAMES C. BARR, Royal Naval Reserve, awarded the
  C.B. He was primarily concerned in getting the fire under, and
  prevented it spreading.

  the D.S.O. Controlled the gun-fire in the most cool and
  efficient manner, after which he concentrated all his energy on
  extinguishing the fire.

  CHIEF GUNNER HENRY MIDDLETON, Royal Navy, awarded the D.S.C.
  Did extremely well in charge of the ammunition parties, and
  encouraged his men by his personal behaviour and coolness.

  ACTING SUB-LIEUTENANT G. F. DICKENS, Royal Naval Reserve, awarded
  the D.S.C. Saved vital parts of the Standard Compass when the
  bridge was abandoned, and then assisted in saving the charts.

  MIDSHIPMAN D. N. COLSON, Royal Naval Reserve, awarded the
  D.S.C. Took the fire-hose into the Chart House, and in spite of
  being burned by falling wood, managed to pass the charts out to
  Sub-Lieutenant Dickens.

  of the Royal Naval Reserve, together with CHIEF-ENGINEER F.
  DRUMMOND and 2ND ENGINEER J. MCDONALD, were all specially
  mentioned in dispatches.

  In addition to the above, twelve men were awarded the D.S.M. for
  various acts of gallantry.



November 1st, 1914


The Secretary of the Admiralty announces that the following report
has been received from H.M.S. _Glasgow_ (Captain John Luce, R.N.)
concerning the recent action off the Chilean coast:--

  _Glasgow_ left Coronel 9 A.M. on November 1 to rejoin _Good Hope_
  (flagship), _Monmouth_, and _Otranto_ at rendezvous. At 2 P.M.
  flagship signalled that apparently from wireless calls there
  was an enemy ship to northward. Orders were given for squadron
  to spread N.E. by E. in the following order: _Good Hope_,
  _Monmouth_, _Otranto_, and _Glasgow_, speed to be worked up to 15
  knots. 4.20 P.M. saw smoke; proved to be enemy ships, one small
  cruiser and two armoured cruisers. _Glasgow_ reported to Admiral,
  ships in sight were warned, and all concentrated on _Good Hope_.
  At 5 P.M. _Good Hope_ was sighted.

  5.47 P.M., squadron formed in line-ahead in following order:
  _Good Hope_, _Monmouth_, _Glasgow_, _Otranto_. Enemy, who had
  turned south, were now in single line-ahead 12 miles off,
  _Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_ leading. 6.18 P.M., speed ordered
  to 17 knots, and flagship signalled _Canopus_, 'I am going
  to attack enemy now.' Enemy were now 15,000 yards away and
  maintained this range, at the same time jambing wireless signals.

  By this time sun was setting immediately behind us from enemy
  position, and while it remained above horizon we had advantage in
  light, but range too great. 6.55 P.M., sun set, and visibility
  conditions altered, our ships being silhouetted against
  afterglow, and failing light made enemy difficult to see.

  7.3 P.M., enemy opened fire 12,000 yards, followed in quick
  succession by _Good Hope_, _Monmouth_, _Glasgow_. Two squadrons
  were now converging, and each ship engaged opposite number in
  the line. Growing darkness and heavy spray of head sea made
  firing difficult, particularly for main deck guns of _Good Hope_
  and _Monmouth_. Enemy firing salvo got range quickly, and their
  third salvo caused fire to break out on fore part of both ships,
  which were constantly on fire till 7.45 P.M. 7.50 P.M., immense
  explosion occurred on _Good Hope_ amidships, flames reaching 200
  feet high. Total destruction must have followed. It was now quite

  Both sides continued firing at flashes of opposing guns.
  _Monmouth_ was badly down by the bow and turned away to get
  stern to sea, signalling to _Glasgow_ to that effect. 8.30 P.M.,
  _Glasgow_ signalled to _Monmouth_, 'Enemy following us,' but
  received no reply. Under rising moon enemy's ships were now
  seen approaching, and as _Glasgow_ could render _Monmouth_ no
  assistance, she proceeded at full speed to avoid destruction.
  8.50 P.M., lost sight of enemy. 9.20 P.M., observed 75 flashes of
  fire, which was no doubt final attack on _Monmouth_.

  Nothing could have been more admirable than conduct of officers
  and men throughout. Though it was most trying to receive great
  volume of fire without chance of returning it adequately, all
  kept perfectly cool, there was no wild firing, and discipline
  was the same as at battle practice. When target ceased to be
  visible, gunlayers spontaneously ceased fire. The serious reverse
  sustained has entirely failed to impair the spirit of officers
  and ship's company, and it is our unanimous wish to meet the
  enemy again as soon as possible.



The following official report of the action fought off Coronel on
November 1st appeared in the German Press, and is interesting in the
light of being an accurate account as viewed by our enemies.

On comparing it with Captain Luce's account, it will be seen that
the German clocks were about thirty minutes slow on our time. Other
evidence also points to this conclusion:--

  The squadron under my command, composed of the large cruisers
  _Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_, and the small cruisers _Nürnberg_,
  _Leipzig_, and _Dresden_, reached on November 1st a point about
  twenty sea miles from the Chilean coast, in order to attack a
  British cruiser which, according to trustworthy information, had
  reached the locality on the previous evening. On the way to the
  spot the small cruisers were several times thrown out on the
  flanks to observe steamers and sailing ships.

  At 4.15 P.M. the _Nürnberg_, which was detached on one of
  these missions, was lost sight of to the north-east, while the
  _Dresden_ remained about twelve sea miles behind. With the bulk
  of the fleet, I was about forty miles north of Arauco Bay. At
  4.17 P.M. there were sighted to the south-west at first two
  ships, and then at 4.25 P.M. a third ship about fifteen miles
  away. Two of them were identified as warships, and were presumed
  to be the _Monmouth_ and _Glasgow_, while the third was evidently
  the auxiliary cruiser _Otranto_. They, too, seemed to be on a
  southerly course. The squadron steamed at full speed in pursuit,
  keeping the enemy four points to the starboard. The wind was
  south, force 6, with a correspondingly high sea, so that I had to
  be careful not to be manœuvred into a lee position. Moreover, the
  course chosen helped to cut off the enemy from the neutral coast.

  About 4.35 P.M. it was seen that the enemy ships were steering
  to the west, and I gradually changed my course south-west, the
  _Scharnhorst_ working up 22 knots, while the _Gneisenau_ and the
  _Leipzig_ slowed down. The enemy's numerous wireless messages
  were 'jammed' as far as possible.

  At 5.20 the arrival of another warship was reported which took
  the head of the line, and was identified as the _Good Hope_, the
  flagship of Rear-Admiral Cradock.

  The enemy ships now got into battle formation, hoisted their
  mast-head flags, and tried slowly to approach a southerly course.
  From 5.35 P.M. onwards I held to a south-westerly course, and
  later to southerly course, and reduced speed to enable my own
  ships to come up. At 6.7 both lines--except _Dresden_, which
  was about one mile astern, and the _Nürnberg_, which was at a
  considerable distance--were on an almost parallel southerly
  course, the distance separating them being 135 hectometres
  (14,760 yards).

  At 6.20, when at a distance of 124 hectometres, I altered my
  course one point towards the enemy, and at 6.34 opened fire at
  a range of 104 hectometres. There was a head wind and sea, and
  the ships rolled and pitched heavily, particularly the small
  cruisers, on both sides.

  Observation and range-finding work was most difficult, the seas
  sweeping over the forecastles and conning-towers, and preventing
  the use of some guns on the middle decks, the crews of which
  were never able to see the sterns of their opponents, and only
  occasionally their bows. On the other hand, the guns of the two
  armoured cruisers worked splendidly, and were well served.

  At 6.39 the first hit was recorded in the _Good Hope_. Shortly
  afterwards the British opened fire. I am of opinion that they
  suffered more from the heavy seas than we did. Both their
  armoured cruisers, with the shortening range and the failing
  light, were practically covered by our fire, while they
  themselves, so far as can be ascertained at present, only hit the
  _Scharnhorst_ twice and the _Gneisenau_ four times. At 6.53, when
  at a distance of 60 hectometres, I sheered off a point.

  The enemy's artillery at this time was firing more slowly, while
  we were able to observe numerous hits. Among other things, it
  was seen that the roof of the fore double turret was carried
  away, and that a fierce fire was started in the turret. The
  _Scharnhorst_ reckons thirty-five hits on the _Good Hope_.

  As the distance, in spite of our change of course, had now
  decreased to 49 hectometres, it was to be presumed that the enemy
  doubted the success of his artillery, and was manœuvring for
  torpedo firing. The position of the moon, which had risen about
  six o'clock, favoured this manœuvre. At about 7.45, therefore, I
  gradually sheered off. In the meantime, darkness had set in, and
  the range-finders in the _Scharnhorst_ for the moment used the
  reflections of the fires which had broken out in the _Good Hope_
  to estimate the distances; gradually, however, range-finding and
  observation became so difficult that we ceased fire at 7.26.

  At 7.23 a big explosion was observed between the funnels of the
  _Good Hope_. So far as I could see, the ship did not fire after
  that. The _Monmouth_ seems to have stopped firing at 7.20.

  The small cruisers, including the _Nürnberg_, which came up in
  the meantime, were by 'wireless' at 7.30 to pursue the enemy and
  make a torpedo attack. At this time rain squalls limited the
  range of vision. The small cruisers were not able to find the
  _Good Hope_, but the _Nürnberg_ came upon the _Monmouth_, which,
  badly damaged, crossed her bows and tried to come alongside. At
  8.58 the _Nürnberg_ sank her by a bombardment at point-blank

  The _Monmouth_ did not reply, but she went down with her flag
  flying. There was no chance of saving anybody owing to the heavy
  sea, especially as the _Nürnberg_ sighted smoke, and believed
  that another enemy ship was approaching, which she prepared to

  At the beginning of the fight the _Otranto_ made off. The
  _Glasgow_ was able to keep up her harmless fire longer than her
  consorts maintained theirs, and she then escaped in the darkness.

  The _Leipzig_ and the _Dresden_ believe that they hit her several
  times. The small cruisers sustained neither loss of life nor
  damage. The _Gneisenau_ had two slightly wounded. The crews went
  into the fight with enthusiasm. Every man did his duty, and
  contributed to the victory.



December 8th, 1914


  _Admiralty, 3rd March, 1915._

The following dispatch has been received from Vice-Admiral Sir F. C.
Doveton Sturdee, K.C.B., C.V.O., C.M.G., reporting the action off the
Falkland Islands on Tuesday, the 8th of December, 1914:--

  _Invincible at Sea,
  December 19th, 1914._


  I have the honour to forward a report on the action which took
  place on 8th December, 1914, against a German Squadron off the
  Falkland Islands.

  I have the honour to be, Sir,
  Your obedient Servant,
  _Vice-Admiral, Commander-in-Chief_.

  _The Secretary, Admiralty._


  The squadron, consisting of H.M. ships _Invincible_, flying
  my flag, Flag Captain Percy T. H. Beamish; _Inflexible_,
  Captain Richard F. Phillimore; _Carnarvon_, flying the flag of
  Rear-Admiral Archibald P. Stoddart, Flag Captain Harry L. d'E.
  Skipwith; _Cornwall_, Captain Walter M. Ellerton; Kent, Captain
  John D. Allen; _Glasgow_, Captain John Luce; _Bristol_, Captain
  Basil H. Fanshawe; and _Macedonia_, Captain Bertram S. Evans;
  arrived at Port Stanley, Falkland Islands, at 10.30 A.M. on
  Monday, the 7th December, 1914. Coaling was commenced at once, in
  order that the ships should be ready to resume the search for the
  enemy's squadron the next evening, the 8th December.

  At 8 A.M. on Tuesday, the 8th December, a signal was received
  from the signal station on shore:

  "A four-funnel and two-funnel man-of-war in
  sight from Sapper Hill, steering northwards."

  At this time, the positions of the various ships of the squadron
  were as follows:

  _Macedonia_--At anchor as look-out ship.
  _Kent_ (guard ship)--At anchor in Port William.
  _Invincible_ and _Inflexible_--In Port William.
  _Carnarvon_--In Port William.
  _Cornwall_--In Port William.
  _Glasgow_--In Port Stanley.
  _Bristol_--In Port Stanley.

  The _Kent_ was at once ordered to weigh, and a general signal was
  made to raise steam for full speed.

  At 8.20 A.M. the signal station reported another column of smoke
  in sight to the southward, and at 8.45 A.M. the _Kent_ passed
  down the harbour and took up a station at the entrance.

  The _Canopus_, Captain Heathcoat S. Grant, reported at 8.47 A.M.
  that the first two ships were 8 miles off, and that the smoke
  reported at 8.20 A.M. appeared to be the smoke of two ships about
  20 miles off.

  At 8.50 A.M. the signal station reported a further column of
  smoke in sight to the southward.

  The _Macedonia_ was ordered to weigh anchor on the inner side of
  the other ships, and await orders.

  At 9.20 A.M. the two leading ships of the enemy (_Gneisenau_ and
  _Nürnberg_), with guns trained on the wireless station, came
  within range of the _Canopus_, who opened fire at them across
  the low land at a range of 11,000 yards. The enemy at once
  hoisted their colours and turned away. At this time the masts
  and smoke of the enemy were visible from the upper bridge of the
  _Invincible_ at a range of approximately 17,000 yards across the
  low land to the south of Port William.

  A few minutes later the two cruisers altered course to port, as
  though to close the _Kent_ at the entrance to the harbour, but
  about this time it seems that the _Invincible_ and _Inflexible_
  were seen over the land, as the enemy at once altered course and
  increased speed to join their consorts.

  The _Glasgow_ weighed and proceeded at 9.40 A.M. with orders to
  join the _Kent_ and observe the enemy's movements.

  At 9.45 A.M. the squadron--less the _Bristol_--weighed, and
  proceeded out of harbour in the following order: _Carnarvon_,
  _Inflexible_, _Invincible_, and _Cornwall_. On passing Cape
  Pembroke Light, the five ships of the enemy appeared clearly in
  sight to the south-east, hull down. The visibility was at its
  maximum, the sea was calm, with a bright sun, a clear sky, and a
  light breeze from the north-west.

  At 10.20 A.M. the signal for a general chase was made. The
  battle-cruisers quickly passed ahead of the _Carnarvon_ and
  overtook the _Kent_. The _Glasgow_ was ordered to keep two miles
  from the _Invincible_, and the _Inflexible_ was stationed on the
  starboard quarter of the flagship. Speed was eased to 20 knots at
  11.15 A.M. to enable the other cruisers to get into station.

  At this time the enemy's funnels and bridges showed just above
  the horizon.

  Information was received from the _Bristol_ at 11.27 A.M. that
  three enemy ships had appeared off Port Pleasant, probably
  colliers or transports. The _Bristol_ was therefore directed to
  take the _Macedonia_ under his orders and destroy transports.

  The enemy were still maintaining their distance, and I decided,
  at 12.20 P.M., to attack with the two battle-cruisers and the

  At 12.47 P.M. the signal to "Open fire and engage the enemy" was

  The _Inflexible_ opened fire at 12.55 P.M. from her fore turret
  at the right-hand ship of the enemy, a light cruiser; a few
  minutes later the _Invincible_ opened fire at the same ship.

  The deliberate fire from a range of 16,500 to 15,000 yards at the
  right-hand light cruiser, who was dropping astern, became too
  threatening, and when a shell fell close alongside her at 1.20
  P.M. she (the _Leipzig_) turned away, with the _Nürnberg_ and
  _Dresden_ to the south-west. These light cruisers were at once
  followed by the _Kent_, _Glasgow_, and _Cornwall_, in accordance
  with my instructions.

  The action finally developed into three separate encounters,
  besides the subsidiary one dealing with the threatened landing.


  The fire of the battle-cruisers was directed on the _Scharnhorst_
  and _Gneisenau_. The effect of this was quickly seen, when at
  1.25 P.M., with the _Scharnhorst_ leading, they turned about 7
  points to port in succession into line-ahead and opened fire at
  1.30 P.M. Shortly afterwards speed was eased to 24 knots, and the
  battle-cruisers were ordered to turn together, bringing them into
  line-ahead, with the _Invincible_ leading.

  The range was about 13,500 yards at the final turn, and increased
  until, at 2 P.M., it had reached 16,450 yards.

  The enemy then (2.10 P.M.) turned away about 10 points to
  starboard and a second chase ensued, until, at 2.45 P.M., the
  battle-cruisers again opened fire; this caused the enemy, at 2.53
  P.M., to turn into line-ahead to port and open fire at 2.55 P.M.

  The _Scharnhorst_ caught fire forward, but not seriously, and her
  fire slackened perceptibly; the _Gneisenau_ was badly hit by the

  At 3.30 P.M. the _Scharnhorst_ led round about 10 points to
  starboard; just previously her fire had slackened perceptibly,
  and one shell had shot away her third funnel; some guns were
  not firing, and it would appear that the turn was dictated by a
  desire to bring her starboard guns into action. The effect of
  the fire on the _Scharnhorst_ became more and more apparent in
  consequence of smoke from fires, and also escaping steam; at
  times a shell would cause a large hole to appear in her side,
  through which could be seen a dull red glow of flame. At 4.4
  P.M. the _Scharnhorst_, whose flag remained flying to the last,
  suddenly listed heavily to port, and within a minute it became
  clear that she was a doomed ship; for the list increased very
  rapidly until she lay on her beam ends, and at 4.17 P.M. she

  The _Gneisenau_ passed on the far side of her late flagship, and
  continued a determined but ineffectual effort to fight the two

  At 5.8 P.M. the forward funnel was knocked over and remained
  resting against the second funnel. She was evidently in serious
  straits, and her fire slackened very much.

  At 5.15 P.M. one of the _Gneisenau's_ shells struck the
  _Invincible_; this was her last effective effort.

  At 5.30 P.M. she turned towards the flagship with a heavy list
  to starboard, and appeared stopped, with steam pouring from her
  escape pipes and smoke from shell and fires rising everywhere.
  About this time I ordered the signal "Cease fire," but before it
  was hoisted the _Gneisenau_ opened fire again, and continued to
  fire from time to time with a single gun.

  At 5.40 P.M. the three ships closed in on the _Gneisenau_, and at
  this time the flag flying at her fore truck was apparently hauled
  down, but the flag at the peak continued flying.

  At 5.50 P.M. "Cease fire" was made.

  At 6 P.M. the _Gneisenau_ heeled over very suddenly, showing the
  men gathered on her decks and then walking on her side as she lay
  for a minute on her beam ends before sinking.

  The prisoners of war from the _Gneisenau_ report that, by the
  time the ammunition was expended, some 600 men had been killed
  and wounded. The surviving officers and men were all ordered
  on deck and told to provide themselves with hammocks and any
  articles that could support them in the water.

  When the ship capsized and sank there were probably some 200
  unwounded survivors in the water, but, owing to the shock of the
  cold water, many were drowned within sight of the boats and ship.

  Every effort was made to save life as quickly as possible both
  by boats and from the ships; life-buoys were thrown and ropes
  lowered, but only a proportion could be rescued. The _Invincible_
  alone rescued 108 men, 14 of whom were found to be dead after
  being brought on board; these men were buried at sea the
  following day with full military honours.


  At about 1 P.M., when the _Scharnhorst_ and _Gneisenau_ turned
  to port to engage the _Invincible_ and _Inflexible_, the enemy's
  light cruisers turned to starboard to escape; the _Dresden_ was
  leading and the _Nürnberg_ and _Leipzig_ followed on each quarter.

  In accordance with my instructions, the _Glasgow_, _Kent_, and
  _Cornwall_ at once went in chase of these ships; the _Carnarvon_,
  whose speed was insufficient to overtake them, closed the

  The _Glasgow_ drew well ahead of the _Cornwall_ and _Kent_, and
  at 3 P.M. shots were exchanged with the _Leipzig_ at 12,000
  yards. The _Glasgow's_ object was to endeavour to outrange the
  _Leipzig_ with her 6-inch guns and thus cause her to alter coarse
  and give the _Cornwall_ and _Kent_ a chance of coming into action.

  At 4.17 P.M. the _Cornwall_ opened fire, also on the _Leipzig_.

  At 7.17 P.M. the _Leipzig_ was on fire fore and aft, and the
  _Cornwall_ and _Glasgow_ ceased fire.

  The _Leipzig_ turned over on her port side and disappeared at 9
  P.M. Seven officer and eleven men were saved.

  At 3.36 P.M. the _Cornwall_ ordered the _Kent_ to engage the
  _Nürnberg_, the nearest cruiser to her.

  Owing to the excellent and strenuous efforts of the engine room
  department, the _Kent_ was able to get within range of the
  _Nürnberg_ at 5 P.M. At 6.35 P.M. the _Nürnberg_ was on fire
  forward and ceased firing. The KENT also ceased firing and closed
  to 3,300 yards; as the colours were still observed to be flying
  in the _Nürnberg_, the _Kent_ opened fire again. Fire was finally
  stopped five minutes later on the colours being hauled down, and
  every preparation was made to save life. The _Nürnberg_ sank at
  7.27 P.M., and as she sank a group of men were waving a German
  ensign attached to a staff. Twelve men were rescued, but only
  seven survived.

  The _Kent_ had four killed and twelve wounded, mostly caused by
  one shell.

  During the time the three cruisers were engaged with the
  _Nürnberg_ and _Leipzig_, the _Dresden_, who was beyond her
  consorts, effected her escape owing to her superior speed. The
  _Glasgow_ was the only cruiser with sufficient speed to have
  had any chance of success. However, she was fully employed
  in engaging the _Leipzig_ for over an hour before either the
  _Cornwall_ or _Kent_ could come up and get within range. During
  this time the _Dresden_ was able to increase her distance and get
  out of sight.

  The weather changed after 4 P.M., and the visibility was much
  reduced; further, the sky was overcast and cloudy, thus assisting
  the _Dresden_ to get away unobserved.


  A report was received at 11.27 A.M. from H.M.S. _Bristol_ that
  three ships of the enemy, probably transports or colliers, had
  appeared off Port Pleasant. The _Bristol_ was ordered to take the
  _Macedonia_ under his orders and destroy the transports.

  H.M.S. _Macedonia_ reports that only two ships, steamships
  _Baden_ and _Santa Isabel_, were present; both ships were sunk
  after the removal of the crew.

  I have pleasure in reporting that the officers and men under my
  orders carried out their duties with admirable efficiency and
  coolness, and great credit is due to the Engineer Officers of all
  the ships, several of which exceeded their normal full speed.

  The names of the following are specially mentioned:


  Commander Richard Herbert Denny Townsend, H.M.S. _Invincible_.

  Commander Arthur Edward Frederick Bedford, H.M.S. _Kent_.

  Lieutenant-Commander Wilfrid Arthur Thompson, H.M.S. _Glasgow_.

  Lieutenant-Commander Hubert Edward Danreuther, First and Gunnery
  Lieutenant, H.M.S. _Invincible_.

  Engineer-Commander George Edward Andrew, H.M.S. _Kent_.

  Engineer-Commander Edward John Weeks, H.M.S. _Invincible_.

  Paymaster Cyril Sheldon Johnson, H.M.S. _Invincible_.

  Carpenter Thomas Andrew Walls, H.M.S. _Invincible_.

  Carpenter William Henry Venning, H.M.S. _Kent_.

  Carpenter George Henry Egford, H.M.S. _Cornwall_.


  Ch. P.O. D. Leighton, O.N. 124238, _Kent_.

  P.O., 2nd Cl., M. J. Walton (R.F.R., A1756), O.N. 118358, _Kent_.

  Ldg. Smn. F. S. Martin, O.N. 233301, _Invincible_, Gnr's Mate,
  Gunlayer, 1st Cl.

  Sigmn. F. Glover, O.N. 225731, _Cornwall_.

  Ch. E. R. Art., 2nd Cl., J. G. Hill, O.N. 269646, _Cornwall_.

  Actg. Ch. E. R. Art., 2nd Cl., R. Snowdon, O.N. 270654,

  E. R. Art., 1st Cl., G. H. F. McCarten, O.N. 270023, _Invincible_.

  Stkr. P.O. G. S. Brewer, O.N. 150950, _Kent_.

  Stkr. P.O. W. A. Townsend, O.N. 301650, _Cornwall_.

  Stkr., 1st Cl., J. Smith, O.N. SS 111915, _Cornwall_.

  Shpwrt., 1st Cl., A. N. E. England, O.N. 341971, _Glasgow_.

  Shpwrt., 2nd Cl., A. C. H. Dymott, O.N. M. 8047, _Kent_.

  Portsmouth R.F.R.B.-3307 Sergeant Charles Mayes, H.M.S. _Kent_.

      F. C. D. STURDEE.


December 8th, 1914.


  H.M.S. _Invincible_.
  _11th December, 1914._


The following copy of a telegram received from the Admiralty, and the
reply thereto, are forwarded for information. Both of these messages
are to be read to the whole Ship's Company on the Quarter Deck of
H.M. Ships under your command.

  (Signed) F. C. D. STURDEE,

  _The Rear-Admiral and Officers Commanding
  H.M. Ships,
  South Atlantic and South Pacific Squadron._

  _For_ ADMIRAL, _Invincible_. (_Date_) 9.12.14


The following message has been received for you from His Majesty:--

  I heartily congratulate you and your officers and
  men on your most opportune victory.

      GEORGE R.I.

  2. Our thanks are due to yourself and to officers
  and men for the brilliant victory you have reported.

  _Reply to_ HIS MAJESTY:

Your Majesty's gracious message has been received with pride and
satisfaction by myself, the Rear-Admiral, Captains, Officers, and
Ship's Companies under my command.

We hope soon to have the privilege of completing our mission by
disposing of the remaining cruiser.

      COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF, _Invincible_.


Admiralty congratulations not received till to-day. Myself, officers
and men desire to thank their Lordships for the approbation of our

  _From_ C.-IN-C. HOME FLEETS, H.M.S. _Cyclops_.

  (_Date_) 10.12.14. 1.14 A.M.

With reference to your telegram 485[10] may I be permitted to offer
my sincere congratulations on the splendid success attending your

  _From_ ADMIRAL, _Marseillaise, Brest_.   (_Date_) 10.12.14.


I beg to express to the Admiralty how fully I share their joy at the
brilliant revenge taken by the British Navy at the Falklands.

      F.N.A. OFFICE.

  _From Petrograd._

  _To_ VICE-ADMIRAL STURDEE, _Admiralty, London_.

  (_Date_) 12.12.14. 3.0 A.M.

Please accept Heartiest Congratulations from the Russian Navy for the
Brilliant Action of your Squadron in fighting the Enemy and sweeping
out the oceans.


  _From_ C.-IN-C. HOME FLEETS, H.M.S. _Cyclops_.

  (_Date_) 11.12.14. 4.58 A.M.

Submit the hearty congratulation of the Grand Fleet on his victory
may be conveyed to Admiral Sturdee.

Messages exchanged between H.E. the Governor of the Falkland Islands
and C.-in-C. South Atlantic and Pacific:


  _11th December, 1914._

Warmest congratulations from self and Colony on your Victory.


May I thank you and the Colony for myself, the R.A., Captains,
Officers and men of the Squadron for your congratulations on our
success, which will not be complete until _Dresden_ is accounted for.
We wish to convey our thanks for the early warning of the approach of
the enemy due to the good lookout from Sapper's Hill.

We feel the honour that the _Canopus_ and the Squadron were in a
position to prevent an old British Colony from being insulted or
injured in any way, and hope that the enemy will have been taught
a lesson not to repeat such action against any other part of the
British Empire.

This Memorandum is to be read to whole Ship's Company on the Quarter

  _Invincible, at Port William,_

  _11th December, 1914._


The Commander-in-Chief wishes to congratulate all the ships of the
squadron on the success of their main encounter with the enemy's
squadron, and to thank the Rear-Admiral, Captains, Officers and Men
for their individual assistance in attaining this great result. The
zeal and steadiness under fire of all hands were most noticeable.

2. The victory will not be complete until the remaining cruiser
is accounted for, and directly the squadron is coaled a further
organised search will be made.

3. One of the greatest merits of the action is the small list of
casualties due to the able handling of the ships by their Captains,
who utilised the power of the guns and the speed of the ships to the
best advantage. Further, the effective fire at long range and the
thorough organization were very evident and enabled the action to be
fought with success against a foe who displayed splendid courage,
determination and efficiency.

4. The excellent way in which the Engine Room Departments responded
to a sudden and unexpected demand reflects great credit on the
officers and the whole engine room complements--this demand was made
at a time when ships were coaling and making good defects during the
few hours the ships were in harbour.

5. The successful disposal of the two powerful cruisers, two of the
three light cruisers, and two colliers, will be of great advantage to
the Naval Strategy of the British Empire.

6. Therefore all concerned can feel that they have performed a
National Service on the 8th December, 1914, off the Falkland Islands.

      (Signed) F. C. D. STURDEE,

  _The Rear-Admiral, Captains, Officers, and all concerned,
  South Atlantic and South Pacific Squadron._



  _Lord Chamberlain's Office,
  St. James's Palace, S.W.,
  3rd March, 1915._

The KING has been graciously pleased to give orders for the following
appointment to the Most Honourable Order of the Bath in recognition
of the services of the undermentioned Officer mentioned in the
foregoing dispatch:--

_To be an Additional Member of the Military Division of the Third
Class or Companion:_

    CAPTAIN JOHN LUCE, Royal Navy.

  _Admiralty, S.W.,
  3rd March, 1915._

The KING has been graciously pleased to give orders for the award of
the _Distinguished Service Cross_ to the undermentioned officers in
recognition of their services mentioned in the foregoing dispatch:--


The following awards have also been made:--

_To receive the Conspicuous Gallantry Medal:_

Portsmouth R.F.R.B.-3307 Sergeant Charles Mayes, H.M.S. _Kent_. A
shell burst and ignited some cordite charges in the casemate; a
flash of flame went down the hoist into the ammunition passage.
Sergeant Mayes picked up a charge of cordite and threw it away.
He then got hold of a fire hose and flooded the compartment,
extinguishing the fire in some empty shell bags which were burning.
The extinction of this fire saved a disaster which might have led to
the loss of the ship.

_To receive the Distinguished Service Medal:_

  Chf. P.O. D. Leighton, O.N. 124238.
  P.O., 2nd Cl., M. J. Walton (R.F.R., A1756), O.N. 118358.
  Ldg. Smn. F. S. Martin, O.N. 233301, Gnr's Mate, Gunlayer, 1st Cl.
  Sigmn. F. Glover, O.N. 225731.
  Chf. E.-R. Artr., 2nd Cl., J. G. Hill, O.N. 269646.
  Actg. Chf. E.-R. Artr., 2nd Cl., R. Snowdon, O.N. 270654.
  E.-R. Artr., 1st Cl., G. H. F. McCarten, O.N. 270023.
  Stkr. P.O. G. S. Brewer, O.N. 150950.
  Stkr. P.O. W. A. Townsend, O.N. 301650.
  Stkr., 1st Cl., J. Smith, O.N. SS 111915.
  Shpwrt., 1st Cl., A. N. E. England, O.N. 341971.
  Shpwrt., 2nd Cl., A. C. H. Dymott, O.N. M. 8047.

The following officers subsequently received recognition:--

Vice-Admiral Sir F. C. Doveton Sturdee, K.C.B., C.V.O., C.M.G., was
honoured with a Baronetcy of the United Kingdom.

To be made Companions of the military division of the Bath:--

  Captain John Luce (H.M.S. _Glasgow_).
  Captain J. D. Allen (H.M.S. _Kent_).

Engineer-Commander E. J. Weeks was promoted to Acting

The 1st Lieutenants of the _Invincible_, _Inflexible_, _Cornwall_,
_Kent_, and _Glasgow_ were all promoted to the rank of Commander in
the next batch of promotions on December 31st, 1914:--

  Lieutenant-Commander J. Wolfe-Murray (_Cornwall_).
  Lieutenant-Commander H. E. Danreuther (_Invincible_).
  Lieutenant-Commander W. A. Thompson (_Glasgow_).
  Lieutenant-Commander E. L. Wharton (_Kent_).
  Lieutenant-Commander R. H. C. Verner (_Inflexible_).

Engineer Lieutenant-Commander J. F. Shaw, the senior officer of his
rank in the squadron, was promoted to Engineer Commander.


The following is the complete revised casualty list of the action off
the Falkland Islands on December 8th, 1914:--


_Killed._--Martell, E. H., stoker petty officer, Po./310682.

_Dangerously wounded._--Bridger, M. J. E., A.B., Po./J7095.

_Severely wounded._--Ford, H. B. S., signalman, Po./J4597; Major,
P. E., shipwright 2nd class, Po./344489; Scotchmer, A. D., A.B.,


_Killed._--Livingstone, N., A.B., (R.F.R., Ch./B3593), Ch./190790.

_Slightly wounded._--Hasler, T., ord. seaman, Ch./J18032; Mayes, A.,
seaman, R.N.R., 4754A; Spratt, G. F., A.B., Ch./237219.


_Killed._--Kelly, S., pte., R.M.L.I. (R.F.R., A366), Po./3793; Kind,
W. J., pte., R.M.L.I., Po./15049; Titheridge, A. C., pte., R.M.L.I.
(R.F.R., B1254), Po./11220; Wood, W., pte. R.M.L.I., Po./16920;
Young, W., seaman, R.N.R., 2543C.

_Died of wounds._--Duckett, G. A., officers' steward 1st cl.,
Po./L2428; Snow, G., pte., R.M.L.I., Po./16858; Spence, T., sergt.,
R.M.L.I. (R.F.R., A811), Po./5674.

_Wounded._--Arnold, W. P., R.M.L.I. (R.F.R., B860), Po./8302; Brewer,
G. S., stoker petty officer (R.F.R., A3572), Po./150950; Day, F.
T., pte., R.M.L.I. (R.F.R., A1008), Ch./6517; Lindsey, H., stoker
1st cl. (R.F.R., B3754), Po./SS101403; Joy, E., lance-corporal
R.M.L.I. (R.F.R., B659), Po./10568; Pear, J., stoker 1st cl. (R.F.R.,
4172), Po./SS102840; Restall, J., stoker 1st cl. (R.F.R., B4055),
Po./291073; Sheridan, A. P., pte., R.M.L.I., Po./13708.


The Secretary of the Admiralty makes the following announcement:--

  On 14th March, at 9 A.M., H.M.S. _Glasgow_, Captain John Luce,
  C.B., R.N.; H.M. Auxiliary Cruiser _Orama_, Captain John R.
  Segrave, R.N.; and H.M.S. _Kent_, Captain John D. Allen, C.B.,
  R.N., caught the _Dresden_ near Juan Fernandez Island.

  An action ensued. After five minutes' fighting the _Dresden_
  hauled down her colours and displayed the white flag.

  She was much damaged and set on fire, and after she had been
  burning for some time her magazine exploded, and she sank.

  The crew were saved. Fifteen badly wounded Germans are being
  landed at Valparaiso.

  There were no British casualties, and no damage to the ships.




A List of Officers serving in the Ships that took part in the Actions
recorded in the Narrative.


Armed Merchantman

  _Captain_                    Noel Grant
  _Com. R.N.R._                James Barr
  _Lieutenant_                 Edmund L. B. Lockyer
  _Lieut.-Com. R.N.R._         Wm. J. O'Neill
  _Lieut. R.N.R._              Peter A. Murchie
                               E. B. Dalby
                               Walter C. Battle
                               J. Henessey
                               M. F. Murray
                               William V. Ogley (_act._)
                               A. Parnis (_act._)
  _Ch. Eng. R.N.R._            Francis Drummond
  _Sen. Eng. R.N.R._           James Mcdonald
  _Eng. R.N.R._                Robert Craig
                               Alexander Lindsay
                               Claude Shore
                               Robert Wilson
                               John O. Teare
                               James Duncan
                               Harold Kendall
                               Charles Rennie
                               Walt Fraser
                               James McPherson
  _Fleet-Surgeon_              A. Cropley (_ret._)
  _Tempy. Surgeon_             E. Maynard
                               Harry Clough
  _Ch. Gunner_                 Henry Middleton
  _Act. Sub-Lieutenant_        G. F. Dickens
  _Asst. Eng. R.N.R._          Joseph Verdin
                               Albert E. Brittlebank
                               Percival J. Thompson
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._ (_in
    charge_)                   Walter H. Ramsden
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Arthur H. Burden
                               Ernest W. Turney
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          William Man
                               D. N. Colson
                               E. R. Linger-Burton (_proby._)
                               J. R. Bane (_proby._)
                               W. Barr (_proby._)
                               R. P. Nisbet (_proby._)
                               J. B. Mein (_proby._)


Armoured Cruiser

  _Rear-Admiral_               Sir Christopher G. F. M. Cradock,
                                   K.C.V.O., C.B.

  _Personal Staff_

  _Secretary_                  George B. Owens
  _Flag Lieut.-Com._           George E. Cumming

  _Lieut. R.M._                Harold S. Walker
  _Clerk to Sec._              John Egremont
                               Edward C. Webber
  _Captain_                    Philip Francklin, M.V.O.
  _Commander_                  Arthur T. Darley
                               Walter Scott
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Percival Van Straubenzee
                               Gerald B. Gaskell
                               Godfrey B. J. Benyon
  _Lieutenant_                 Lancelot A. Montgomery
                               Gordon E. E. Gray
                               John M. H. Fisher
                               Douglas C. Tudor
                               Arthur G. Smith
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          Edward J. French
  _Eng. Com._                  Arthur Brown
  _Eng. Lieut.-Com._           Herbert W. Couch
  _Major R.M._                 Frederick C. Edwards
  _Chaplain_                   Rev. Arthur H. J. Pitt
  _Fleet Surgeon_              James J. Walsh, M.B.
  _Fleet Paym._                Alfred H. Veitch
  _Surgeon_                    Francis C. Searle
  _Surgeon_ (_Reserve_)        Ferdinand L. J. M. de Verteuil, M.B.
  _Sub-Lieutenant_ (_act._)    Francis J. A. Cotter
  _Asst. Paym._                John E. Tizard
                               Stuart Watson
  _Ch. Gunner_                 George F. Organ
  _Ch. Sig. Boatswain_         William Penny
  _Boatswain_                  Franklyn F. Stephens
                               John W. Bushell
  _Warrant Officer_ (_act._)   Robert C. T. Roe
  _Gunner_                     William D. Wright
                               Francis A. G. Oakley
                               Robert J. Page (_act._)
                               William W. Kingdom (_act._)
  _Carpenter_                  Albert J. Hellyer
  _Artif. Eng._                Richard M. Healy
                               William R. Henon
                               Joseph Duckworth
  _Wt. Mechanician_            William A. Bass
  _Mid. R.C.N._                W. A. Palmer
                               F. V. W. Hathaway
                               A. W. Silver
                               M. Cann
  _Mid. R.N.R._                Graham Trounson (_proby._)
                               Henry K. D. Cuthbert (_proby._)
                               Geoffrey M. Dowding (_proby._)
  _Asst. Clerk_                Charles G. Cook (_tempy._)
  _Naval Cadet_                G. Coffin
                               I. M. R. Campbell
                               S. M. Raw
                               D. A. Willey
                               R. A. Macdonald


Armoured Cruiser

  _Captain_                    Frank Brandt
  _Commander_                  Spencer D. Forbes
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Bertie W. Bluett
                               Hugh D. Collins
                               Hon. Peter R. H. D. Willoughby
  _Lieutenant_                 John A. Lees
                               Thomas Stapleton
                               Harry P. Rogers
                               Alfred Edgar
                               Wilfred D. Stirling
                               Maurice J. H. Bagot
  _Eng. Com._                  John B. Wilshin
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Bernard C. Child
                               Lionel B. Wansbrough
  _Captain R.M._               Geoffrey M. I. Herford
  _Chaplain_                        ------
  _Staff Surgeon_              Henry Woods
  _Fleet Paym._                John Cooper
  _Surgeon_                    Albert J. Tonkinson
  _Sub-Lieutenant_             Hanway Cooper
  _Asst. Paym._                Douglas B. Lee
  _Ch. Gunner_                 Robert T. H. V. Lee
  _Ch. Carpenter_              Frederick G. Hartland
  _Gunner_                     James Bennett
  _Boatswain_                  William J. Barrett
                               Thomas B. Ireland (_act._)
  _Artif. Eng._                George H. Farebrother
                               Alfred T. Johns
                               William Day
  _Wt. Mechanician_            Alfred Start
  _Wt. Eng. R.N.R._            Charles Driver
  _Clerk_                      Basil St. M. Cardew
  _Asst. Clerk_                Cecil T. Martin (_tempy._)
  _Naval Cadet_                K. A. M. Somerville
                               G. R. Bruce
                               J. F. Boulton
                               V. G. E. S. Schreiber
                               J. R. Le G. Pullen
                               F. A. Cooper
                               C. Musgrave
                               J. M. Pascoe
                               G. W. Muir
                               P. S. Candy


Light Cruiser

  _Captain_                    John Luce
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Wilfred A. Thompson
                               Charles L. Backhouse
                               Maurice P. B. Portman
  _Lieutenant_                 Herbert I. N. Lyon
                               Charles G. Stuart
  _Lieut. R.N.R._              Walter M. Knowles
                               T. W. F. Winter
  _Sub-Lieutenant_             Frederick B. Alison
  _Eng. Lieut.-Com._           Percy J. Shrubsole
  _Eng. Lieut._                John S. Machan
  _Fleet Surgeon_              Robert T. Gilmour
  _Staff Surgeon_              Alexander T. Wysard (_ret._)
  _Staff Paymaster_            Francis E. Adams
  _Asst. Paym._                Lloyd Hirst
                               Norman H. Beall
  _Gunner_                     Arthur G. Foreman
                               William R. Heilbroun
                               George H. Bartlett
  _Carpenter_                  Sylvester G. Pawley
  _Artif. Eng._                Charles A. Palser
                               James Milne (_act._)
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          George W. Wilson


Armed Merchantman

  _Captain_                    Herbert M. Edwards
  _Commander R.N.R._           Walter de M. Baynham, R.D.
  _Lieutenant_                 Julian M. Ogilvie
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          T. B. Storey
                               H. W. Woodcock
                               H. G. Thompson
                               R. M. Ward
                               F. R. O'Sullivan
                               A. W. Clemson
  _Ch. Eng. R.N.R._            David Montgomery
  _Sen. Eng. R.N.R._           William J. Philip
  _Engineer R.N.R._            William Mackersie
                               Robert Pittendrigh
                               Andrew Allen
                               Adam A. I. Kirk
  _Tempy. Surgeon_             W. Meikle
                               S. Robertson
  _Sub-Lieutenant R.N.R._      G. F. Willdigg
                               R. Roscoe
  _Asst. Eng. R.N.R._          Alan Cameron
                               Peter Brown
                               Thomas R. Blellock
                               Alexander C. Mearns
                               John Gemmell
                               Aymer. R. McDougall
                               William McL. Allan
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Roland H. Draper
                               Thomas B. Wildman
  _Gunner_                     W. J. Drew (_ret._)
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          Charles E. F. St. John
                               Herbert J. Anchor
                               George D. Scott
                               George E. D. Billam
                               D. N. White
                               C. C. Lawrence


  _Captain_                    Heathcote S. Grant
  _Commander_                  Philip J. Stopford
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Andrew Kerr (_ret._)
                               Philip Hordern
  _Lieutenant_                 Harry T. Bennett
                               Henry N. Lesley
                               Owen W. Phillips
  _Lieut.-Com. R.N.R._         Arthur H. Bird
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          Charles T. Keigwin. R.D.
                               Clarence Milner
                               David M. Clarke (_act._)
                               William A. Williamson (_act._)
                               Malcolm C. Powell
  _Eng. Commander_             William Denbow
  _Eng. Lieut.-Com._           Sydney P. Start
  _Captain R.M.L.I._           Gerald S. Hobson
  _Fleet Paymaster_            Albert Greenwood
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          Charles C. Cartwright
                               William J. Donohue
  _Staff Surgeon_              August J. Wernet
  _Tempy. Surgeon_             Michael Vlaste
  _Surgeon R.N.V.R._           Charles H. F. Atkinson
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Harold E. W. Lutt
  _Chaplain_                   Rev. James D. de Vitre
  _Ch. Boatswain_              John Myers
  _Gunner_                     James Irish
  _Boatswain_                  William Evans
                               William E. T. Honey (_act._)
  _Ch. Artificer Eng._         Walter G. Morris
  _Art. Eng._                  Ernest E. Moorey
  _Wt. Eng. R.N.R._            T. W. Greenwood
  _Ch. Carpenter_              Albert Hughes
  _Midshipman_                 C. R. O. Burge
                               R. T. Young
                               P. R. Malet de Carteret
                               J. L. Storey
                               H. M. L. Durrant
                               R. H. L. Orde
                               R. K. Dickson
                               B. R. Cochrane
                               L. H. P. Henderson
                               L. H. V. Booth
  _Mate_                       R. C. T. Roe (_act._), left by _Good Hope_
                                  on an island at Vallenar Roads, Chile
  _Clerk_                      Jean le Jeune
  _Midshipman, R.N.R._         Lawrence H. Faragher


Armoured Cruiser

  _Rear-Admiral_               Archibald P. Stoddart
  _Secretary_                  Thomas R. Waterhouse
  _Flag Lieutenant_            Hon. Humphrey A. Pakington
  _Clerk to Sec._              H. Guy Pertwee
  _Captain_                    Harry L. d'E. Skipwith
  _Commander_                  Thomas A. Williams
                               Ronald E. Chilcott
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Arthur S. Burt
                               Arthur G. Leslie
                               Ralph Leatham
  _Lieutenant_                 A. M. Donovan
                               David B. Nicol
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          Bertram Shillitoe
                               Bertram H. Davies
  _Eng. Commander_             Alfred T. P. Read
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Edward Iliff
  _Maj. R.M._                  Edmund Wray
  _Captain R.M._               Arthur J. Mellor
  _Chaplain_                   Rev. John Beatty
  _Fleet Surgeon_              Edward Cooper
  _Fleet Paym._                Albert E. B. Hosken
  _Surgeon_                    Arthur G. Valpy French
  _Surgeon R.N.V.R._           William H. Condell
  _Sub-Lieutenant_             Philip F. Glover
                               Frederick W. F. Cuddeford
  _Asst. Paym._                Herebert E. Symons
  _Gunner_                     William H. Hunt
                               Sidney C. Woodriffe
                               John F. Hannaford
                               W. H. Ellis
  _Boatswain_                  Alfred Hill
                               Albert E. Pearson
  _Sig. Boatswain_             Herbert H. Hunwicks
  _Carpenter_                  Norman O. Staddon
  _Artif. Eng._                Harold E. Oyler
                               Claude B. King
                               James Telford
                               Charles Hill
                               William S. Branson
  _Clerk_                      Charles H. Doubleday
  _Midshipman_                 J. R. Warburton
                               P. M. S. Blackett
                               P. J. M. Penney
                               S. P. Broughton
                               A. C. Jelf
                               R. M. Dick
                               R. G. Fowle
                               C. J. M. Hamilton
                               J. C. E. A. Johnson
                               M. S. Graham
                               R. Mandley
                               L. H. Peppe


Armoured Cruiser

  _Captain_                    Walter M. Ellerton
  _Commander_                  Herbert A. Buchanan-Wollaston
  _Lieut.-Commander_           James Wolfe-Murray
                               Henry E. H. Spencer-Cooper, M.V.O.
  _Lieutenant_                 Mansel B. F. Colvile
                               Edward W. Sinclair
                               Kenneth B. Millar
                               Norman Whitehead
                               John S. Hammill
                               Robin E. Jeffreys
  _Sub-Lieutenant R.N.R._      Desmond A. Stride
                               William H. Richardson
  _Eng. Commander_             Archibald W. Maconochie
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Douglas G. Campbell
                               Cecil J. Meggs
  _Captain R.M._               Herbert R. Brewer
  _Chaplain and N.I._          Robert McKew, B.A., B.D.
  _Fleet Surgeon_              Malcolm Cameron
  _Fleet Paymaster_            Harry G. Wilson
  _Naval Inst._                Chas. S. P. Franklin, B.A.
                               George H. Andrew, M.A.
  _Surgeon_                    Cecil R. M. Baker
  _Asst. Paym._                Henry Rogers
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Joseph H. Wilson
  _Ch. Art. Eng._              Thomas R. I. Crabb
                               Edwin C. Edwards
  _Gunner_                     Ernest Stone
                               Richard F. Hall
                               Edward W. Pearne (_T._)
  _Boatswain_                  Ernest H. Gearing
  _Carpenter_                  George H. Egford
  _Art. Eng._                  Percy S. Walkey
                               Edwin Foster
  _Midshipman_                 Philip F. Armstrong
                               Arthur H. Ashworth
                               Hugh E. Burnaby
                               John Bostock
                               Douglas M. Branson
                               Lycett Gardiner
                               Jocelyn S. Bethell
                               Morice Blood
                               Richard F. Carter
                               Willoughby N. Barstow
                               Nigel D. Bury
                               William S. Batson


Light Cruiser

  _Captain_                    Basil H. Fanshawe
  _Commander_                  Harry L. Boyle
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Ernest G. H. Du Boulay
  _Lieutenant_                 Robert F. U. P. Fitzgerald
                               Archibald B. Cornabé
                               Edward G. G. Hastings
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          James A. Hodges
  _Eng. Commander_             James D. W. H. F. Cranley
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Edward G. Sanders
  _Staff Surgeon_              Leslie M. Morris
  _Staff Paym._                Tom Henley
  _Sub-Lieutenant_             Cyril A. H. Brooking
                               Charles H. L. Woodhouse
  _Gunner_                     Stephen W. Duckett
                               George W. Callaway
  _Boatswain_                  Frank Box
  _Carpenter_                  William L. Harfield
  _Artif. Eng._                William Tearle
                               Joseph L. Wagstaff
  _Clerk_                      John G. B. Collier
                               James Hogg


Armed Merchantman

  _Captain_                    Bertram S. Evans, M.V.O.
  _Commander R.N.R._           Edwin P. Martin
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Valentine D. English
  _Lieut.-Com. R.N.R._         Henry G. Westmore, R.D.
                               W. F. Pollard
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          W. C. Young
                               T. C. W. Thompson
                               F. Cross
  _Ch. Eng. R.N.R._            James G. Crichton
  _Sen. Eng. R.N.R._           Thomas S. Ferguson
  _Eng. R.N.R._                William C. O. Taylor
                               Walter J. Hickingbotham
                               James Finnecy
                               George R. R. Cushing
                               Edmund J. Caws
                               Frederick P. Voisey
  _Tempy. Surgeon_             A. M. Russell
  _Sub-Lieutenant R.N.R._      Alfred W. Drew
                               E. F. Hannan
                               O. Taylor
                               Jeffery Elliott
  _Surg. Prob. R.N.V.R._       Harold Williamson
  _Asst. Eng. R.N.R._          Oliver J. R. Pinkney
                               F. C. Masters
                               Joseph Neale
                               William G. Cheeseman
  _Asst. Paym. in charge_      Herbert W. Landon
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Percy Selwin
  _Gunner_                     James W. Drew
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          H. J. Miller
                               G. V. Thomas
                               F. H. E. Firmstone
                               Gordon D. Brown
                               B. V. Rutley
                               W. G. Hiscock


Armed Merchantman

  _Captain_                    John R. Segrave
  _Commander R.N.R._           John F. Healey, R.D.
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Joseph W. L. Hunt
  _Lieut. R.N.R._              Geoffrey G. Thorne
                               Edward S. Carver
                               Henry T. Heale (_ret._)
                               Allen Fielding
                               Frederick W. Willsden (_ret._)
                               T. P. Webb
                               W. A. Assenheimer
  _Ch. Engineer_               John Robertson
  _Sen. Engineer_              Donald McL. McWilliam
  _Engineer_                   J. R. Dowling
                               James Imrie
                               H. P. Jack
                               Alexander S. Hall
  _Asst. Engineer_             Alexander Manson
                               Neil H. T. Hill
                               Charles W. Howil
                               Donald Matheson
                               David A. Sheeby
                               David M. Johnston
                               William Turner
                               William Houston
                               James Piggott
                               James McAdam
                               George Herd
  _Tempy. Surgeon_             Herbert E. Scowcroft
                               Sydney Welham
  _Sub-Lieut. R.N.R._          M. W. Cooksey
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Herbert Newman
                               John F. Cooper
  _Ch. Gunner_                 Arthur J. Burstow
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          Edward Roberts
                               Stuart F. Pocock
                               Leonard E. Fordham
                               Bernard K. Berry
                               S. S. Adley
                               H. Schofield
                               H. C. C. Forsyth
                               G. E. G. Sandercock



  _Vice-Admiral_               Sir F. C. Doveton Sturdee, K.C.B.,
                                  C.V.O., C.M.G.
  _Secretary_                  Cyril S. Johnson
  _Flag Lieutenant_            Reginald W. Blake
  _Clerk to Sec._              Arthur D. Duckworth
  _Captain_                    Percy T. H. Beamish
  _Commander_                  Richard H. D. Townsend
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Hubert E. Dannreuther
                               Hon. Edward B. S. Bingham
                               John C. F. Borrett
                               Lionel H. Shore
                               Edward Smyth-Osbourne
  _Lieutenant_                 Cecil S. Sandford
                               Cameron St. C. Ingham
                               Hugh H. G. Begbie
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          George ff. H. Lloyd
  _Eng. Commander_             Edward J. Weeks
  _Eng. Lieut.-Commander_      James F. Shaw
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Francis L. Mogg
  _Major R.M._                 Robert C. Colquhoun
  _Captain R.M._               Charles H. Malden
  _Temp. Lieut. R.M._          John T. Le Seelleur
  _Chaplain_                   Rev. Arthur C. Moreton, M.A.
  _Fleet Paym._                Ernest W. Mainprice
  _Fleet Surgeon_              Walter J. Bearblock
  _Surgeon_                    Ernest MacEwan
                               Clarence E. Greeson, M.B.
  _Sub-Lieutenant_             Alexander P. McMullen
                               Robert R. Stewart
  _Asst. Paym._                Gordon Franklin
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         Clement A. Woodland
  _Gunner_                     William C. Hunt
                               Robert Connolly
                               Mark W. Cameron
                               Ernest J. Read
                               Sydney C. Kennell
  _Boatswain_                  Frederick Luker
                               Philip J. Warrington
                               Wilfred Turner
  _Sig. Boatswain_             William F. Raper
  _Gunner R.M._                Albert E. Nixon
  _Carpenter_                  Thomas A. Walls
  _Artf. Engineer_             Walter H. Bull
                               John Dews
                               Frederick C. Fry
  _Clerk_                      William R. C. Steele
  _Midshipman_                 Gordon T. Campbell
                               Edwin T. Hodgson
                               Douglas A. C. Birch
                               John M. Shorland
                               John H. G. Esmonde
                               Allan G. McEwan
                               Rupert C. Montagu
                               Lionel D. Morse
                               Duncan G. Reid



  _Captain_                    Richard F. Phillimore, C.B., M.V.O.
  _Commander_                  Ernest Wigram
                               John W. Carrington
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Rudolf H. C. Verner
                               Hon. Patrick G. E. C. Acheson, M.V.O.
                               Frederic Giffard
                               Ralph B. Janvrin
  _Lieutenant_                 Edward C. Denison
                               Kenneth H. D. Acland
                               Arthur W. Blaker
                               Brian L. G. Sebastian
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          Herbert J. Giles
  _Eng. Commander_             Harry Lashmore
  _Eng. Lieut.-Commander_      Arthur E. Lester
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Rey G. Parry
  _Major R.M._                 John B. Finlaison
  _Captain R.M._               Robert Sinclair
  _Chaplain_                   Rev. Ernest S. Phillips, M.A.
  _Fleet Surgeon_              Edward H. Meaden
  _Fleet Paym._                Henry Horniman
  _Surgeon_                    John H. B. Martin, M.B., B.A.
                               Martyn H. Langford
  _Sub-Lieutenant_ (_act._)    Thos. H. Welsby
                               Alexander C. G. Madden
                               Leicester St. J. Curzon-Howe
                               Robert D. Oliver
                               Alfred E. B. Giles
                               John H. Macnair
                               George T. Philip
                               Terence H. Back
  _Asst. Paym._                John F. Stephens
  _Ch. Gunner_                 Edward Fox
  _Ch. Boatswain_              Alfred M. Cady
  _Ch. Artf. Eng._             George E. Martin
  _Gunner_                     John H. Moore
                               Frederick W. Furmadge
  _Boatswain_                  John A. Brander
  _Sig. Boatswain_             Phillip J. Jones
  _Gunner R.M._                John Cameron
  _Carpenter_                  William A. Cawsey
  _Artf. Engineer_             Charles A. Richards
  _Artf. Eng._ (_act._)        William S. Barnes
  _Bandmaster R.M._            Herbert Reely
  _Midshipman_                 Rupert E. Bethune
                               John D. Chapple
                               Regd. G. France-Hayhurst
                               David D. Mercer
  _Clerk_                      Crichton F. Laborde


Armoured Cruiser

  _Captain_                    John D. Allen
  _Commander_                  Arthur E. F. Bedford
  _Lieut.-Commander_           Eric L. Wharton
                               James R. Harvey
  _Lieutenant_                 Victor H. Danckwerts
  _Lieut.-Com. R.N.R._         Charles M. Redhead, R.D.
  _Lieutenant R.N.R._          Harold T. Dunn
                               Frederic C. Howard
                               William G. B. Jones
                               Walter R. Tilling
                               James Marshall
                               John L. S. G. Lilley
  _Eng. Commander_             George E. Andrew
  _Eng. Lieutenant_            Victor O. Foreman (_ret._)
  _Captain R.M._               Robert W. J. Laing
  _Chaplain_                   Rev. Norman B. Kent, B.A.
  _Fleet Surgeon_              Edward B. Pickthorn (_ret._ )
  _Paymaster_                  Sydney G. Andrews
  _Temp. Surg._                Ronald E. B. Burn
  _Surgeon R.N.V.R._           Thomas B. Dixon
  _Asst. Paym. R.N.R._         William G. Stewart
  _Gunner_                     Thomas P. Collins
                               Claude H. Griffiths
  _Boatswain_                  William T. Dunning
                               Walter H. Speed
  _Sig. Boatswain_             Leonard C. Croucher
  _Carpenter_                  William H. Venning
  _Artf. Engineer_             William Muirhead
  _Wt. Engineer R.N.R_         John Garrow
                               John W. Scott
                               Donald Campbell
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          Robert L. Burridge
                               John D. Ross
                               David T. M. Williams
                               George C. B. Liley
                               Cecil B. Hogan
                               Harold W. S. Wright
  _Midshipman R.N.R._          Frederick E. Valentine
                               George W. Barker
                               Edgar H. Cowan
  _Clerk_                      Reginald H. Kitchin


  Allardyce, the Hon. William, Governor of Falkland Islands, 138

  Allen, Captain J. D., of _Kent_, 27
    a tribute to crew of _Kent_ by, 131
    created a C.B., 191

  America (South), apprehension in, 24
    Germans in, 16, 68
    scenery of, 159

  _Asama_ in eastern Pacific, 46

  Atlantic (South), battle in, 9, 26, 35, 169

  _Australia_ joins North Pacific squadron, 72

  _Baden_ sunk by _Bristol_, 92

  Barr, Acting-Commander James C., awarded C.B., 171

  Battle-cruiser action, a, 96, 181

  Beamish, Captain P. H., of _Invincible_, 27

  Boarding parties and their work, 29

  Brandt, Captain Frank, of _Monmouth_, 21

  Brazilian ports, enemy shipping at, 25

  Brewer, Stkr. P.O. G. S., a D.S.M. for, 191

  _Bristol_, officers of, 211
    opens fire on _Karlsruhe_, 9

  British casualties in the Falklands, 193-4
    men-of-war off South America, 19-27

  Canada purchases submarines, 7

  _Canopus_, an amusing incident on, 90
    converted into a floating fort, 63, 85
    fine work of, 58
    good shooting by, 90
    officers of, 205
    skilful navigation of, 58

  _Cap Trafalgar_, sinking of, 9, 26, 35
    official dispatch on action, 169

  _Carmania_, a conflagration on, 38
    decorations for officers and men, 171
    heroism of crew, 44
    officers of, 197-8
    sinks _Cap Trafalgar_, 9-10, 26, 35 _et seq._, 169

  _Carnarvon_, a German's toast, 108
    a valuable capture by, 24
    chases the enemy, 93
    officers of, 207

  Chilean coast, action off the (_see_ Coronel, battle of)

  China, German squadron in, 4

  Coaling, the "delights" of, 30, 140

  Colson, Midshipman D.N., awarded D.S.C., 171

  Concentration, necessity of, 61, 64

  _Cornwall_ chases enemy, 110
    decorations for crew, 121-3
    escorts _Carmania_ to base, 42
    officers of, 209
    opens fire on _Leipzig_, 114

  Coronel, battle of, 45 _et seq._
    enemy torpedo attack at, 55
    official dispatches on, 172-7
    outstanding features of, 59
    unreliable accounts of, 60
    vessels engaged in, 46
    visibility conditions advantageous to enemy, 52
    von Spee's report on, 52, 174

  Cradock, Rear-Admiral Sir Christopher, a tribute to, 58
    goes down with his ship, 56
    his command reinforced, 23
    his objective at Coronel, 50
    hoists his flag, 20
    sights and chases _Karlsruhe_, 8, 20

  _Crown of Galicia_, German prisoners on, 139

  Danreuther, Lieut.-Com. H. E., promotion for, 192

  _Defence_ essays to join southern command, 27
    sails for Cape Town, 79

  Dickens, Acting Sub-Lieut. G. F., awarded D.S.C., 171

  _Dresden_, a vain search for, 136, 158
    arrives at Orange Bay, 7
    chase of, 110
    eludes her pursuers, 114
    hoists the white flag, and sinks, 165, 166
    joins von Spee, 8
    sinking of: Admiralty announcement on, 194

  Dymott, Shpwrt. A. C. H., awarded D.S.M., 191

  Easter Island, German squadron at, 6, 45

  _Edinburgh Castle_, deck hockey on, 26

  Edwards, Captain H. McI., of _Otranto_, 21

  Edwards, Mr., of Easter Island, 45

  Egford, Carpenter G. H., receives D.S.C., 121, 190

  Ellerton, Captain W. M., of _Cornwall_, 21, 113
    efficient handling of his ship, 119

  _Emden_, exploits and sinking of, 11-12, 15, 63

  England, Shpwrt. A. N. E., a D.S.M. for, 191

  Evans, Captain B. S., of _Macedonia_, 21

  Falkland Islands, battle of, Admiral Sturdee's dispatch on, 178
      battle-cruiser action, 96 _et seq._, 181
      British casualties in, 138, 193-4
      commercial importance of, 151
      congratulations on, 138, 186-9
      decisive nature of, 135
      enemy sighted, 87
      light cruiser action, 110, 183
      the prize bounty, 139
    contemplated seizure of, 74, 75, 89, 119, 152
    land and sea defences of, 63, 85
    topography of, 81
    why chosen as base, 18

  Fanning Island, British cable station destroyed at, 6

  Fanshawe, Captain B. H., of _Bristol_, 21, 23, 24

  Felton, Mrs., her services recognised, 88

  Food problem in wartime, 30

  Francklin, Captain Philip, of _Good Hope_, 20

  French colonies, Germans and, 13

  German barbarity, a typical instance of, 108
    casualties in the Falklands, 138, 139
    4.1-inch gun, range of, 47, 126
    light cruisers, chase of, 110
    men-of-war in foreign seas, 1 _et seq._
    sailors buried at sea, 109

  Germans abandon colonies in Polynesia, 14
    in South America, 16, 68

  Germany, her responsibility for the war, 156, 157

  _Glasgow_, a duel with _Leipzig_, 112
    casualties in Coronel battle, 56
    chases enemy cruisers, 110
    officers of, 203
    sights enemy, 49

  Glover, Signalman Frank, awarded D.S.M., 123, 191

  _Gneisenau_, a gallant fight by, 102
    accurate shooting by, 53
    end of, 104
    her commander rescued, 107

  _Good Hope_ becomes Admiral Cradock's flagship, 20
    loss of, 54-5
    officers of, 199-200

  Grant, Captain Heathcoat, of _Canopus_, 21, 23

  Grant, Captain Noel, of _Carmania_, 26, 37
    awarded C.B., 171

  Great Britain and German colonies, 14
    enters the War, 4

  Hague Conference and the law of neutrality, 152

  High explosives, curious examples of damage by, 121

  Hill, Chief Engine Room Artificer, awarded D.S.M., 122, 191

  _Hizen_ in the Pacific, 46, 72

  _Idzuma_ in the Pacific, 46, 72

  _Inflexible_, a fine run by, 66
    first shot in Falkland Islands battle, 93
    officers of, 217

  _Invincible_ and Falkland Islands battle, 93
    damaged, 105, 106
    joins Admiral Stoddart's squadron, 66
    lost in Jutland battle, 140
    officers of, 215

  Japan declares war, 13, 14

  Japanese cruisers in the eastern Pacific, 46

  _Karlsruhe_, chase and escape of, 8
    end of, 9, 62

  _Kent_, anxiety regarding fate of, 132
    casualties on, 132
    chases German cruisers, 110
    duel with _Nürnberg_, 128
    ensign of, 133
    officers of, 219
    opens fire on _Leipzig_, 114
    sights _Dresden_, 164

  _Königsberg_ blocked up and destroyed, 12, 63

  _Kronprinz Wilhelm_, escape of, 8
    internment of, 11

  Leatham, Captain E. La T., of _Defence_, 26

  Leighton, Chf. P.O. D., a D.S.M. for, 191

  _Leipzig_, a running fight by, 115
    chase of, 110
    eludes her pursuers, 45
    end of, 110 _et seq._, 118
    joins von Spee's squadron, 7, 45
    on fire, 117
    stories of survivors, 119

  Life at sea in 1914, 28 _et seq._

  Lockyer, Lieut.-Commander E. L. B., awarded D.S.O., 171

  Luce, Captain John, of _Glasgow_, 21
    and Falkland Islands battle, 113, 114
    awarded C.B., 191
    report on Coronel action, 52, 172

  Lyddite shell in warfare, 105, 116, 128

  _Macedonia_ conveys German prisoners, 139
    officers of, 212

  Magellan, Straits of, 161

  Maltzhan, Baron von, 155

  Martin, Ldg. Smn. F. S., awarded D.S.M., 191

  Mas-a-Fuera, temporary headquarters of German squadron, 71

  Mayes, Sergt. Charles, brave deed recognised, 129, 130, 190

  McCarten, E.-R. Artr. G. H. F., awarded D.S.M., 191

  _Mera_, voluntary internment of, 155

  Merchant ships, increased enemy sinkings of, 24

  _Mersey_ destroys _Königsberg_, 12

  Middleton, Chief Gunner Henry, awarded D.S.C., 171

  _Monmouth_ in Coronel action, 53
    loss of, 56
    officers of, 201-2

  Murray, Lieut.-Com. J. Wolfe, promotion for, 192

  Napier, Captain W. R., of _Edinburgh Castle_, 26

  Naval actions, tactics of modern, 50

  _Navarro_ sunk by _Orama_, 63

  Navy, the, life at sea, 28 _et seq._
    postal arrangements of, 32
    work in wartime, 28-34

  Newbolt, Sir Henry, on Admiral Cradock, 58
    on Falkland Islands battle, 135

  _Newcastle_ in the North Pacific, 72

  _Nürnberg_, chase of, 110
    duel with _Kent_, 128
    joins von Spee's squadron, 6
    sinking of, 131
    sinks _Monmouth_, 56

  _Orama_, officers of, 213
    sinks a German storeship, 63

  _Otranto_, officers of, 204
    under enemy fire, 57

  Pacific (Western), the, German squadron in, 4

  Papeete, bombardment of, 21
    French gunboat sunk at, 6

  _Patagonia_, internment of, 155

  _Pegasus_, sinking of, 12

  Phillimore, Captain R. F., of _Inflexible_, 27

  Port Stanley, arrival of _Canopus_: the scene, 84
    description of, 82

  Port William, British squadron in, 85

  Postal arrangements at sea, 32

  _Princess Royal_ in North American waters, 155

  _Prinz Eitel Friedrich_, internment of, 10, 164

  _Professor Woermann_, capture of, 24

  Royal Naval Reserve, efficiency of, 132

  Sailors, the psychology of, 141 _et seq._

  _Santa Isabel_, sunk by _Bristol_, 92

  _Scharnhorst_ badly hit, 99, 100
    good marksmanship of, 53
    sinking of, 101

  Segrave, Captain J. R., of _Orana_, 21

  Serajevo tragedy, the, 157

  _Severn_ and the end of _Königsberg_, 12

  _Seydlitz_, escape of, 123

  Shark fishing as a pastime, 31

  Shaw, Eng. Lieut.-Com. J. F., promotion for, 192

  Skipwith, Captain H. L. d'E., of _Carnarvon_, 24

  Smith, Stoker John, a D.S.M. for, 122, 191

  Snowdon, Act.-Chf. E.-R. Artr. R., a D.S.M. for, 191

  South America (_see_ America, South)

  Spee, Vice-Admiral Count von, and his command, 4
    aims and hopes of, 151 _et seq._
    contemplates seizure of Falklands, 74, 75, 89, 119, 152
    death of, 105
    movements of his squadron, 67
    policy of, considered and analysed, 13-18
    refuses to drink a toast, 139
    report on Coronel battle, 52

  Stoddart, Rear-Admiral and a rescued kinsman, 108
    commands British squadron, 159
    reinforcements from England for, 65
    succeeds Admiral Cradock, 60
    transfers his flag, 63

  Sturdee, Vice-Admiral F. C. Doveton, 27
    a Baronetcy for, 191
    dispatch on battle of Falkland Islands, 178 _et seq._
    his strategic victory, 135
    in command of British squadron, 79, 80
    ordered to Gibraltar, 159

  Submarines purchased by Canadian Government, 7

  _Suffolk_ chases _Karlsruhe_, 8

  _Sydney_ in action with _Emden_, 11

  Thompson, Lieut.-Com. W. A., promotion for, 192

  _Titania_, enemy auxiliary cruiser, 6

  Townsend, Stoker P.O. W. A., awarded D.S.M., 122, 191

  Tsingtau, German base at, 4

  Turner, Maj., commands Falkland Island Volunteers, 86

  Venning, Carpenter W. H., awarded D.S.C., 190

  Verner, Lieut.-Com. R. H. C., promotion for, 192

  Walls, Carpenter T. A., awarded D.S.C., 190

  Walton, P.O. M. J., a D.S.M. for, 191

  Weeks, Engineer-Com. E. J., promotion for, 191

  Wharton, Com., and sinking of _Nürnberg_, 133
    promotion for, 192

  Wireless stations, German, 16



[1] _Note._--This book was completed in May, 1917, but was withheld
from publication on account of the many omissions prescribed by the
Naval Censor.

[2] The German Chancellor had publicly declared the intention to
capture the French colonies.

[3] _See_ Map, p. 5.

[4] _Carmania_, Cunard S.S. Co.--19,524 tons, 650 feet long, triple
screw turbines.

_Cap Trafalgar_, Hamburg-Sud-Amerik S.S. Co.--18,710 tons, 590 feet
long, triple screw turbines.

[5] According to "Brassey's Naval Annual."

[6] German wireless system.

[7] "Tales of the Great War" (Longmans).

[8] "Blackwood's Magazine."

[9] The _Seydlitz_--the German auxiliary that escaped--took in the
wireless signal announcing the victory and actually heard the firing
of the _Cornwall_ and the _Glasgow_ on her beam about four miles
off. She managed to escape under cover of the fog by steering to the
south, but it was a near thing.

[10] Reporting sinking of three German ships.


  Italic text is denoted by _underscores_.

  A superscript is denoted by ^{x}; for example, 8^{th}.

  The format of time in the original text has been retained. For example,
  10.30 A.M. or 7.3 P.M.

  Gun caliber in the original text is of the form 9.1" or sometimes 9·1".
  For consistency all calibers have been changed to the 9.1" (or
  9.1-inch) form.

  Obvious typographical errors and punctuation errors have been
  corrected after careful comparison with other occurrences within
  the text and consultation of external sources.

  Except for those changes noted below, all misspellings in the text,
  and inconsistent or archaic usage, have been retained. For example:
  flagship, flag ship; midair, mid-air; conning tower, conning-tower;
  skilful; inanition.

  Pg 19, 'Chili' replaced by 'Chile'.
  Pg 22, 'Chilian' replaced by 'Chilean'.
  Pg 37, 'ricochetting' replaced by 'ricocheting'.
  Pg 43, 'poms-poms' replaced by 'pom-poms'.
  Pg 55, 'we jamming' replaced by 'were jamming'.
  Pg 60, 'Rear Admiral' replaced by 'Rear-Admiral'.
  Pg 85, 'the follow-morning' replaced by 'the following morning'.
  Pg 90, 'ricochetted' replaced by 'ricocheted'.
  Pg 92, 'Seidlitz' replaced by 'Seydlitz'.
  Pg 94, 'Carvarvon' replaced by 'Carnarvon'.
  Pg 96, 'line ahead' replaced by 'line-ahead'.
  Pg 98, 'ricochetting' replaced by 'ricocheting'.
  Pg 141, 'fight our' replaced by 'fight in our'.
  Pg 157, 'Chilian' replaced by 'Chilean'.

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