Tuesday, April 29, 2008

1915. Society (1)

1915. The Great War in Europe intensifies.Casualty lists mount for both sides.

1915. Turkey says Armenians side with Russia and begins to deport them, putting to death all who resist. Some 1.75 million Armenians will be deported, 600,000 will starve to death in the Mesopotamian Desert, one-third will survive.

1915. The Germans use chlorine gas at the Second Battle of Ypres, the first use of poison gas by any warring power. Greenish-yellow clouds of gas choke French colonial troops who flee in panic.

1915. Torpedoes from the German submarine U-20 hit the Cunard Line passenger ship S.S. Lusitania at 2:10 P.M., May 7, off the coast of Ireland and the huge vessel sinks in 18 minutes killing 1,198 who include 128 U.S. citizens, among them railroad magnate Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt and New York theatrical magnate Charles Frohman. It will turn out that the Lusitania carried 173 tons of rifle ammunition, shrapnel casings, fuses and contraband food from the U.S. but had no escort and remained on course despite recent U-boat sightings in the area.

1915. The Thompson submachine gun (Tommy gun) is introduced by U.S. Brig. Gen. John Taliaferro Thompson.

To be continued.

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