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'HISTORY OF THE GREAT WAR BASED ON OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS. THE CAMPAIGN IN MESOPOTAMIA 1914-1918. VOLUME I.' [‎74v] (153/454)

The record is made up of 1 volume (223 folios). It was created in 1923. 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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128 HISTORY OF THE WAR : MESOPOTAMIA
maintain order. Captain Hayes-Sadler at once sent this news
by wireless to General Barrett. He then decided to attempt
the passage through the obstruction so as to push on to Basra
with the ships under his command. The message to General
Barrett brought an immediate reply asking whether the
warships could assist and saying that he would provide a mili
tary detachment to accompany them. It was soon arranged
that Major-General Fry should proceed at once with a detach
ment in two river steamers and that General Barrett should
march that evening for Basra with the remainder of the force.
About 2 p.m., when it appeared to be slack water, the
Espiegle negotiated the obstruction with a little difficulty and
was followed at a short interval by the Odin and Lawrence.
They anchored opposite the deserted Turkish battery at
Baljaniya and landed a party to dismantle the four field guns
abandoned there. At 3.30 p.m., there was no sign of the
river steamers with troops, and a cloud of smoke was observed
in the direction of Basra, betokening burning buildings.
Thereupon, Captain Hayes-Sadler decided to proceed at once
with the Espiegle and Odin, leaving the Lawrence to escort the
troops. Basra was reached about 5.30 p.m., and the Custom
House was seen to be on fire and full of plundering Arabs.
These were dispersed by a blank charge and naval landing
parties cleared the Custom House and its vicinity. By dark
the town was comparatively quiet and the shore parties were
withdrawn for the night. Early next morning, however,
Arabs recommenced looting and naval parties were again
landed. About 9.30 a.m.* General Fry’s detachmentf arrived
in the Mejidieh and Blosse Lynch, took over the guards on shore
and established order without difficulty.
The main force under General Barrett reached the south
western outskirts of Basra about noon. Leaving Sahil at
8 p.m. the day before, their twenty-eight mile march had
proved tedious and trying; for movement had been very
slow owing to the numerous high banks and irrigation channels
which crossed the track and which had to be levelled or bridged.
On arrival at Basra the few bridges over the several creeks
traversing the area had to be repaired or strengthened; the
indescribably filthy condition of the town and its environs
she.'wed that quarters for the troops could only be arranged
I he delay had been due to the difficulties of embarkation at Sahil and
to the necessity for waiting till daylight to pass the obstruction in the river.
t 18th Brigade Headquarters, Norfolks, 110th, two mountain guns, a
wireless section, and a section of a field ambulance.

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Content

The volume is the first volume of an official government publication compiled at the request of the Government of India, and under the direction of the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence, by Brigadier-General Frederick James Moberly. The volume was printed and published at His Majesty's Stationery Office, London.

The contents provide a narrative of the operations of 1914-1918 in Mesopotamia, based mainly on official documents.

The volume is divided into two parts. The first part, entitled, 'Part I. Before the Outbreak of Hostilities', consists of the following five chapters:

  • General Description of the Country
  • The Turks in Mesopotamia
  • British Pre-War Policy
  • The Army in India and Pre-War Military Policy
  • Inception of the Operations

The second part, entitled, 'Part II. The Campaign in Lower Mesopotamia', consists of the following seven chapters:

  • The Landing in Mesopotamia of Force "D" and the Operations Leading to the Occupation of Basra
  • The Occupation of Basra and the Capture of Qurna
  • Commencement of the Turkish Counter-Offensive
  • Development and Defeat of the Turkish Counter-Offensive
  • Operations in Arabistan and the Capture of Amara
  • Operations on the Euphrates and the Occupation of Nasiriya
  • The battle of Kut and Occupation of Aziziya

The volume also includes nine maps, entitled:

  • The Middle East
  • Lower Mesopotamia
  • Map 1 - To illustrate operations described in Chapter VI
  • Map 2 - To illustrate fighting near Qurna
  • Map 3 - To illustrate fighting round Shaiba
  • Map 4 - To illustrate operations in Persian Arabistan
  • Map 5 - To illustrate operations in the Akaika Channel 27th June to 5th July 1915
  • Map 6 - To illustrate operations near Nasiriya 6th to 24th July 1915
  • Map 7 - To illustrate the Battle of Kut 28th September 1915
Extent and format
1 volume (223 folios)
Arrangement

The volume contains a page of errata (folio 5), a list of contents (folios 6-8), a list of maps and illustrations (folio 9), appendices (folios 185v-192), an index (folios 192v-214v), and eight maps in a pocket attached to the inside back cover (folios 217-224).

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence commences at the inside front cover with 1 and terminates at the inside back cover with 225; 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.

Pagination: the volume also contains an original printed pagination sequence.

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English in Latin script
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'HISTORY OF THE GREAT WAR BASED ON OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS. THE CAMPAIGN IN MESOPOTAMIA 1914-1918. VOLUME I.' [‎74v] (153/454), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/66/1, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100048172213.0x00009a> [accessed 25 August 2019]

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