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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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Greater daring than that of the Shaitan can hardly be
imagined. The total crew of this launch consisted of eight
sailors under the command of Lieutenant Mark Singleton,
R.N., and a very little resolution on the enemy’s side would
have disposed of them easily at point-blank range. For his
gallantry, which caused the flight of over two thousand Turkish
troops—besides the actual capture of eleven officers and two
hundred and fifty men—and contributed so greatly to the
unopposed capture of Amara, Lieutenant Singleton was
awarded the Distinguished Service Order and two of his
small crew the Distinguished Service medal. These rewards
can seldom have been better deserved.
On the arrival of the Comet and the rest of the flotilla
between 1.30 and 2.15 p.m., General Townshend, Captain
Nunn and other officers landed at the Custom House, and here
the civil governor of Amara, the commandant and a number of
Turkish officers came and surrendered. To the civil governor
General Townshend gave orders to' arrange at once for the
collection of supplies for fifteen thousand men who would
arrive very shortly ; and, after hoisting the Union Jack,
arrangements were made to secure the town with the very small
force available. This, excluding the few officers, amounted
to a total of only forty-one men, made up as follows :—
Comet —Three sailors, two marines and twelve soldiers.
Shaitan —Eight sailors.
Sumana —Eight sailors.
Lewis Felly —Four sailors, one marine.
Launch L-2 —Two sailors, one marine.
Lieutenant Palmer, R.N., of the Comet, was posted on shore
to keep order on the town front with all the men that could
be spared off the vessels, i.e., two sailors, one marine and
twelve soldiers of the West Kents and the l/4th Hampshire.
A battalion of the Constantinople Fire Brigade Regiment sent
down word that they were ready to surrender at the barracks
in the town ; and Lieutenant Palmer was sent there with a
seaman, a marine and an interpreter to accept the surrender.
Lieutenant Palmer found this battalion of about four hundred
Turkish soldiers there with their officers, all fully armed, and
marched them down to the quay and on to a big lighter, which
when filled with about eight hundred prisoners was anchored
in mid-stream under the guns of the flotilla. A little later, a
formed body of fifty Turkish soldiers marched up to the Turkish
naval barracks and surrendering their arms were taken into
custody by three British soldiers who had been posted there.

About this item


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)

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.' [‎143v] (291/454), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/MIL/17/15/66/1, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 21 August 2019]

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