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The Story of the Great War, Volume II (of VIII)-History of the European War from Official Sources

  From Content: 'The first great campaign on the western battle grounds in the European War began on August 4, 1914. On this epoch-making day the German army began its invasion of Belgium—with the conquest of France as its ultimate goal. Six mighty armies stood ready for the great invasion. Their estimated total was 1,200,000 men. Supreme over all was the Emperor as War Lord, but Lieutenant General Helmuth von Moltke, chief of the General Staff, was the practical director of military operations. General von Moltke was a nephew of the great strategist of 1870, and his name possibly appealed as of happy augury for repeating the former capture of Paris. The First Army was assembled at Aix-la-Chapelle in the north of Belgium, within a few miles of the Dutch frontier. It was under the command of General von Kluck. He was a veteran of both the Austrian and Franco-Prussian Wars, and was regarded as an able infantry leader. His part was to enter Belgium at its northern triangle, which projects between Holland and Germany, occupy Liege, deploy on the great central plains of Belgium, then sweep toward the French northwestern frontier in the German dash for Paris and the English Channel. His army thus formed the right wing of the whole German offensive. It was composed of picked corps, including cavalry of the Prussian Guard. The Second Army had gathered in the neighborhood of Limbourg (p. 010) under the command of General von Bülow. Its advance was planned down the valleys of the Ourthe and Vesdre to a junction with Von Kluck at Liege, then a march by the Meuse Valley upon Namur and Charleroi. In crossing the Sambre it was to fall into place on the left of Von Kluck's army. The German center was composed of the Third Army under Duke Albrecht of Württemberg, the Fourth Army led by the crown prince, and the Fifth Army commanded by the Crown Prince of Bavaria. It was assembled on the line Neufchateau-Treves-Metz. Its first offensive was the occupation of Luxemburg. This was performed, after a somewhat dramatic protest by the youthful Grand Duchess, who placed her motor car across the bridge by which the Germans entered her internationally guaranteed independent state. The German pretext was that since Luxemburg railways were German controlled, they were required for the transport of troops. Preparations were then made for a rapid advance through the Ardennes upon the Central Meuse, to form in order upon the left of Von Bülow's army. A part of the Fifth Army was to be detached for operations against the French fortress of Verdun.'


Field Hospital and Flying Column: Being the Journal of an Englis

  Excerpt: Being the Journal of an English Nursing Sister in Belgium Russia By Violetta Thurstan London and New York G. P. Putnam's Sons 1915 First Impression April 1915 M. R. Allons! After the great Companions, and to belong to them. They too are on the road. They are the swift and majestic men, they are the greatest women. They know the universe itself as a road, as many roads, As roads for travelling souls. Camerados, I will give you my hand, I give you my love more precious than money. Will you give me yourselves, will you come travel with me? Shall we stick by each other as long as we live? Contents CHAP.PAGE I. THE BEGINNING OF IT ALL1 II. CHARLEROI AND ROUND ABOUT16 III. OUR HOSPITAL AND PATIENTS37 IV. THE RETURN TO BRUSSELS53 V. A MEMORABLE JOURNEY76 VI. A PEACEFUL INTERLUDE92 VII. OUR WORK IN WARSAW113 VIII. THE BOMBARDMENT OF LODZ128 IX. MORE DOINGS OF THE FLYING COLUMN144 X. BY THE TRENCHES AT RADZIVILOW161 INDEX179 [1] I THE BEGINNING OF IT ALL War, war, war. For me the beginning of the war was a torchlight tattoo on Salisbury Plain. It was held on one of those breathless evenings in July when the peace of Europe was trembling in the balance, and when most of us had a heartache in casein case England, at this time of internal crisis, did not rise to the supreme sacrifice. It was just the night for a tattoodark and warm and still. Away across the plain a sea of mist was rolling, cutting us off from the outside world, and only a few pale stars lighted our stage from above. The field was hung round with Chinese lanterns throwing weird lights and shadows over the mysterious forms of men and beasts that moved therein. It was fascinating to watch the stately entrance into the field, Lancers, Irish Rifles, Welsh Fusiliers,[2] Grenadiers and many another gallant regiment, each marching into the field in turn to the swing of their own particular regimental tune until they were all drawn up in order. There followed a very fine exhibition of riding and the...

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