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OLD, BUT NEW., Issue 15701, 15 January 1915
OLD, BUT NEW.
BATTLE OF PORT STANLEY [By A. Spence.] Tho fatuous system of suppressions dear to tho War Office, a.nd imitated by tho Admiralty since Lord Fisher took the reins, is shown for what it is worth in what follows. It is a clear account of what befell Count Von Spec off Port Stanley, in the Falkland Islands, on November 8, when the Scharnhorst, GneLsenau, and others were sunk. The theory framed in these notes originaly was that something " extra special" must have taken part. It is sure now that nothing less than the Dreadnought cruisers Invincible, and Inflexible were engaged. They were backed by the belted ships Carnarvon and Cornwall and the light cruisers Brietol and Glasgow, also by the old Canopus, battleship. The story has been told all over Buenos Ayres by British naval officers who arrived after the battle, and their account is being reproduced in the Australian papers. HOW THEY MET. The Invincible, (flagship of Admiral Sturdee) and Inflexible," according to officers of the Invincible, accompanied by the battleship Canopus and the armored cruisers Carnarvon and Cornwall and light cruisers Bristol and Glasgow, arrived at I'ort Stanley, the seaport of the on December 7 to coal. The big battle cruisers ran into the bay, which is almost completely land-locked. Surrounded by the high hills, theynwere entirely bidden from outside. On the morning of December 8 the German squadron, consisting of the Scharnhorst, Leipzig, Xurnberg. Dresden, and Gniesenau, appeared on the horizon, accompanied by the converted merchantman Prince Eitef Frederick, with the evident intention of taking the Falkland* and seizing Port Stanley .-is a coaling station. Finding apparently only the British squadron of five cruisers and one old battleship on guard, the Germans cleared for action, and, ejpsing in, opened lire, the British cruisers replying. THE SURPRISE. The, action was already furious when through the narrow harbor entrance emerged the two great, battle cruisers, each with her eight 12in guns swung out for action. Admiral Von Spec only then realised his mistake and the trap into which he had fallen, and made signal for his little squadron to seatt-er. It was too late, however, the Germans having drawn far within the British range. The Schnrnhorst and the Gncisenau at once became the targets for the British cruisers' salvos, the light German ships being left to the smaller British cruisers. CONCENTRATING ON THE VAN. The Invincible, being in the lead, received the brunt of the fire. Both German armored cruisers, although seeing at once their hopeless position, fought desperately, and, being within range for their Sin 'guns, got home several broadsides on the side, which, however, rat. tied vainly against her armor. DIED GAME. It was not long before the flames were licking about the 'upper work's, first of tho Scharnhorst, then of the Gneisenau, a-nd one after the other their pun» became silent, as the were killed at their stations. But, there was no hint of surrender. 'With the last of their guns still blazing defiance, first one, then the other oi tho two gallant, i misers heeled over. Admiral Von Spec's Hag at the main truck of tho Scharnhorst wa* the latt bt-on <:i the cruiser. CHIVALROCS GLASGOW Meanwhiie the Glasgow, which tva- .in her second bailie with the Gejmari .squadron, had overtaken the Leipzig, and was fettling an account due since November 1 off Corcnei. The fight, was not io unequal as that 1,-twc.eu t:ie larger ?hi| ami it v.as on the Gia. g->w that most oj the British casualties t.-o'k 'place. Tin-. 6in guns of tho Glasgow counted .for more than the 4in of the Leipzig, and at the end of a twohour action the German ship, on fire and sink-ir.c,', hoisted tho white flag. The Glasgow promptly (.eased firing, and, running down clue to the -inking German ship, lowered her boats to save- the remnants of her crew. But as the first British boats started acres? the water on their errand of merry, according to the British accounts, another gun blazed forth from tile Leipzig's side, and a .-hell exploded on the Glasgow'?- decks. The Glasgow's guns were manned once more, and another broad.-id", poured into tho German, sinking her. 'J he Sottish officers, however, expressed vogrei at this outcome of the heat of battle, as they generally are. inclined to believe that the. shot ftvei'l ■ from the Leipzig was accidental. Thir-. of course, explains ore' of the cables which we received at the time. THE TV RAN XV. The news is 78 days old. \Ve should have heard it. V"o did not hear it. Itwas only yo-ierday that we learned that the London 'Time-' had stated, in effect,, that if the military and naval sentiment of the, British Empire is expected to march blindfold to the altar, the Juncke.-s mistake the march of puhiie opinion.
OLD, BUT NEW., Issue 15701, 15 January 1915
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