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Report on the Operations in the Vicinity of Shaiba 12th-14th April 1915. Simla: General Staff India, 1915. [‎8] (16/70)

The record is made up of 35 folios. It was created in 1915. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.


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6-3^ a. u. Large bodies of enemy's infantry were seen advancing over the horizon
to the westward and masses were also seen occupying the ridge of hills immedi
ately north of Old Basrah*.
7a.m. By y-A. M.the enemy were definitely repulsed and retired leaving small part
ies in observation, who entrenched themselves about 1 ,700 yards from the west and
south-west of our position. The attack against Cairn post was not very
8 a. m . determined and broke up about 8 a.m., considerable numbers, however, collecting
in the tamarisk wood to the south of that post.
5. Hitherto on the northern face of the position all had been quiet and the
9 a.m . defences at Kiln Post and West Work had not been seriously engaged, but at 9
a. m. a large force of irregulars with 6 standards occupied North Mound and
house,s in the vicinity. Here they remained all day and the subsequent night,
making various attempts to advance on our position, but they were easily checked
by rifle and machine gun fire.
6. Meanwhile further enemy's guns had opened on the position till it was
estimated that they had two heavy 4*5", six Field and four Mountain guns dis
persed mostly in pairs in an ai^extending from west to the south.
Their heavy guns kept up a good and accurate fire but never exactly
located our batteries, which were under cover, while their other guns did little
harm, their shells in most cases bursting too high. Our artillery observing officers
on Kiln Post located the flashes of the enemy's artillery and in most cases their
detachments were driven off, and 6 guns were completely silenced—these guns
were withdrawn in the middle of the day while the mirage rendered their position
invisible. Two guns of 23rd Mountain Battery, which had been placed for the night
immediately south of the Fort, were withdrawn about 11 a. m. without difficulty.
7. Preparations had been made for the despatch of a column of all arms
towards Old Basrah to cover the landing of the 30th Brigade and a Mountain
Battery, which were known to have left Basrah. This, however, was not put into
effect as that force was recalled to Basrah.
II. A. M,
2-15 p. m.
8. The enemy resumed their attack at 2-15 P.M., mainly directed as before
on the Sou^h Salient, and to prevent them establishing themselves on the
western portion of the Dorset position I sent J Battalion 2nd Norfolk Regiment
from the reserve to occupy this place, replacing them in my General Reserve by
a Battalion 2nd Dorset Regiment from 16th Brigade.
9. Up to this time nothing of note had occurred on the Eastern Defence work
2-30 p. m . bey 1 0nd A s ? 1 I ? ie sni P in g' b ut at 2-30 P. M. as the snipers had become troublesome
to the Artillery observation post, Major Wheeler, 7th Lancers, volunteered to
take his squadron and clear them. The movement was made at the gallop, but the
original objective was covered by enemy's irregulars in a hidden position—these
were ridden over and many lanced, while "S " Battery, Royal Horse Artillery, and
machine guns repelled an attempted counter-attack by hostile horsemen.
1 he manoeuvre was very effective and the squadron was admirably led with
great dash by Major Wheeler, who lost only one man and three horses wounded.
(See Appendix C, page 15 )
3p m. I0, 3 p ' M. the attack died away and sniping tactics were resorted to
and soon afterwards about 3-25 p. m . further enemy's guns opened fire from a
P • M • sou erl y direction, and at 4 p. m . the enemy's artillery appeared to be registering
much 8 demag" 0113 ^ 0r ^ 0ns P 05 * 1 ^ 008 with percussion fuze without doing
Kight arrangements, J '• For the ensuing night I reinforeed Cairn Post with a Double Company
Inl k, a r try the southern P° rt 'on of East Work, their place being taken by
men? w« 0 Ti ,y ' ,0t t h Li S ht Infantr y- The i Battalion, 2nd Norfolk Regi-
ment, was withdrawn frr>rr. • • 1 • • , »
and thic r ^ ueneral UeIa main for £ Battalion from j6Lh Brigade
portions'of Pirmpf mi w ' I, 7 was P lac ^ centrally between the two
" l! ! ,l Vorks - Durin g the earIier P art of the night the 24th
Camp Ve ln be ^ ums " fr" om Basrah and bivouacked near the Cavalry

About this item


This file contains military despatches regarding the Battle of Shaiba that took place between British and Ottoman forces on 12-14 April 1915.

The file begins with an introductory letter from General Sir John Eccles Nixon, Commanding Force "D" to the Chief of General Staff, Simla (folios 4-6) that is followed by a report related to events of 11-12 April written by Major-General C. I. Fry (folios 8-10) and another report that concerns events of April 13-14 written by Major-General C. J. Melliss (folios 14-19).

The file contains a number of maps and sketches of the battlefield and surrounding area.

Extent and format
35 folios

The file contains an contents page (that uses the original printed pagination system) on folio 3.

Physical characteristics

A bound, printed volume. The file's foliation sequence commences at the front cover and terminates at the inside back cover; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio. Please note that ff. 31-34 are housed within f. 35.

The volume also contains an original printed pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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Report on the Operations in the Vicinity of Shaiba 12th-14th April 1915. Simla: General Staff India, 1915. [‎8] (16/70), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/95, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 17 July 2019]

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