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Report on the Operations in the Vicinity of Shaiba 12th-14th April 1915. Simla: General Staff India, 1915. [‎19] (30/70)

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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It sbon became evident th^it the enemy occupied a very extensive front
of some 3^ miles and considerably overlapped cur line. Ihe 18th Brigade had
to come up into line with and on the right of the 16th Brigade in order to engage
the enemy along his front—the i 10th Infantry being my sole reserve. By 11-15
A.M. I discovered definitely that the enemy's line covered over 3 miles, extending
from west of Watch Tower to the north end of Barjisiyah Wood (" Dry Wells"
on map).
The iSih Brigade having come into line with the 16th Brigade a general
advance from South Mound was continued for a mile without incident. By
1 1 -30 A M. the two battalions in the front line of the 16th Brigade (2nd Battalion,
Dorset Regiment and 24th Punjabis) became suddenly heavily engaged with the
enemy in position at goo yards distance from the Dorsets and 6.0 from the
Punjabis, while on the right the 18th Brigade were also fully engaged, the Norfolks
and 120th Infantry coming under heavy rifle and machine gun tire from trenches
some 400 yards to their front.
The enemy's trenches were well sited and practically invisible from the front,
while the glacis-like slope of the ground trending towards the Barjisiyah Woods
aBorded them an ideal position for defence, and a large proportion of our
casualties occurred at this stage.
At 1 P.M. I ordered the 18th Brigade to advance direct on the gap in the
trees near the north end of Barjisiyah Wood and the 16th Brigade to close the
gao between the 2 Brigades—both to co-operate in the attack. Heavy firing
now became general all along the line, the whole of our Artillery being engaged in
dose support of the Infantry attack. At 11 -30 p.m. three casualties occurred
m the Divisional Staff, my C. R. A., Lieutenant-Colonel Cleeve, being wounded
and his successor Major Kdlnann being hu before he could take over his
duties, while Captain Cardew, Assistant Director Army Signals, was also wound
ed. At; this period the General Officer Commanding, 16th Briuade, ordered the
22nd Company Sappers and Miners to prolong the right of the 24th Punjabis, and
•| battahon, 117th Mahrattas, to reinforce on the right of the Sappers and Miners,
and with these reinforcements a further advance was effected in this part of the
held. 1 he General Officer Commanding, 18th Brigade, now pushed forward ^ batta
lion of Tioth Mahratta Light Infantry on the right of the 1 20!;h Infantry, holding
the remaining wing of the 110th and'No. 17 Company, Sappers and'Miners
in reserve, but owing to an enfilading fire from the right flank the advance of
the iSih Brigade was checked.
At 2-30 P.M. I called on the Cavalry Brigade for vigorous action to assist
the forward movement of the 110th on the extreme right flank. The Cavalry
assisted by dismounted rifle fire, while " S " Battery, Royal Horse Artillery, also
co operated.
At 3 0 P.M. the fight was practically stationary, the enemy clinging to his
trenches with Qesptrate tenacity while the Cavalry reported their inability to
press forward on the enemy's left flank owing to severe shell fire and the mud line
The Artillery were supporting our Infantry attack to the utmost, but such support
was extremely difficult to render owing to the mirage and the invisibility of the
enemy's trenches. Our gunners did splendid work and I must mention one of
many instances of it. The Norfolks were losing heavily and asked for further
Artillery support. Lieutenant Gilpin, 63rd Battery, Royal Field Artillery went
forward into the Norfolk firing line for observation of 'tire, and communication
with his Battery Commander was maintained by Captain De Grey, Adjutant of
the Norfolks, who from the firing line flag signalled back to the Battery the
result or Lieutenant Gilpin s observations. Many were the gallant deeds of reso-
lute course b y a|1 ranks on this day, but this appears a striking example of the
right kind of Infantry and Artillery co-operation.
The day was now waning and I told both Infantry Brigadiers that the
enemy s position in advance of Barjisiyah Woods must be taken and that a aene-
ral advance with the whole of the Artillery in ;close support must now be made.
The troops responded most gallantly to tins fresh call, the 76th Battery in action

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. [‎19] (30/70), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/95, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 24 July 2019]

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