Educational Resource

Timeline of Events


1914

July – June 1914

28th June, 1914

Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, assassinated in Sarajevo by Garvilo Princip. Austria-Hungary blames Serbia for supporting this terrorist attack in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

5th July, 1914

Germany promises to support Austria-Hungary in its confrontation with Serbia over the assassination.

23rd July, 1914

Austria-Hungary issues ultimatum to Serbia to accept its terms or face recrimination.

25th July, 1914

Serbia orders mobilization of its army.

26th July, 1914

Austria-Hungary begins mobilization of its army, including along the Russian border.

28th July, 1914

Austria- Hungary declares war on Serbia. In Self-Defence and in support of Serbia, Russia orders partial mobilization of its army.

31st July, 1914

As Austria-Hungary’s ally, Germany demands an end to Russian mobilization. London stock market closes due to European crisis.

August 1914

1st August, 1914

Germany declares war on Russia and begins mobilization.

2nd August, 1914

Germany invades Luxembourg and demands permission to move through neutral Belgium against France.

3rd August, 1914

Germany declares war on France. Belgium refuses Germany permission to cross its territory to reach France and asserts its neutrality under international treaty. Britain promises to defend Belgian neutrality.

4th august, 1914

Germany declares war on Belgium and invades the country. Over 1 million refugees flee the country over the coming weeks, mostly to the Netherlands but also to France and Britain.

5th August, 1914

German mine layer Königen Luise becomes the first naval casualty of the war when sunk in the North Sea by three British ships.

6th august, 1914

Austria-Hungary declares war on Russia. British parliament gives approval for the recruitment of half a million men to begin a rapid expansion of the British Army. Battle of the Frontiers – Fighting begins between French and German troops along the border linking the two countries. Continues until early September with heavy casualties.

7th August, 1914

British Expeditionary Force (BEF), under the command of Field Marshal Sir John French, begins to land in France. Disembarkation completed on 16th August, 1914. The First ‘call to arms’ issued by the British Secretary of State for War, Field Marshal Lord Kitchener. British Forces enter the German protectorate of Togoland in West Africa. Hostilities also begin in East Africa.

8th August, 1914

The First Defence of the Realm Act (DORA) is passed by the British parliament, giving the government widespread new powers over peoples lives.

12th August, 1914

Britain and France declare war on Austria-Hungary.

13th August, 1914

Austro-Hungarian forces begin their first invasion of Serbia.

15th August, 1914

Japan sends Germany an ultimatum demanding the evacuation of its naval base at Tsingtau, China. Russian Army invades East Prussia in a quick strike against Germany.

20th August, 1914

Battle of Gumbinnen. advancing Russian troops drive back German forces in East Prussia. German troops occupy Brussels, the Belgian capital. Battle of Ardennes. Intense fighting as the French attempt to advance into Germany. French are driven back after suffering severe losses. Continues until 25th August, 1914.

22nd August, 1914

Battle of the Sambre. French troops try to block the German advance north-west of the Ardennes.

23rd August, 1914

Battle of mons. Fighting begins for British troops around the Belgian town of Mons. The BEF begins to retreat alongside its French allies. European war becomes global when Japan declares war on Germany. General Max von Prittwitz is replaced in command of the German Army in East Prussia by General Paul von Hindenburg, with General Erich Ludendorff as his chief of staff.

24th August, 1914

First Indian Army contingent leaves India to serve in France.

26th August, 1914

Battle of Tannenburg. German armies in East Prussia defeat Rusian forces. Battle lasts until 30th August, 1914. Battle of Le Cateau. part of the BEF fights a rearguard action against the Germans to allow the main retreat to continue. German forces surrender in Togoland.

28th August, 1914

100,000 British men already recruited by Kitchener. Immediate calls follow for a second hundred thousand. Naval action between British and German ships off the Heligoland Bright in the North Sea. Four German ships sunk.

30th August, 1914

First German aeroplane raid on Paris.

September 1914

3rd September, 1914

Second Battle of Lemberg. Russian forces capture the fourth largest city in Austria-Hungary. Battle lasts until 11th September, 1914.

5th September, 1914

The Pact of London is signed by the Allied powers of France, Britain and Russia, in which all three agree not separately accept peace. Battle of Masurian Lakes. German armies in east Prussia defeat Russian forces. Battle lasts until 15th September, 1914.

6th September, 1914

Battle of the Marne. French forces, with British support, stop the German advance through northern France. Only a short distance from Paris and then Launch a counter-attack. battle continues until 10th September, 1914.

13th September, 1914

Battle of the Aisne. German armies stop Franco-British counter-attack astride the River Aisne. The first trenches begin to appear in France. The battle lasts until 15th September, 1914.

14th September, 1914

General Helmuth von Moltke replaced in command of the German armies in France and Belgium by general Erich von Falkenhayn.

16th September, 1914

First battalion of British part-time territorial troops, the 1/14th Battalion, London Regiment – known as the London Scottish – lands in France.

17th September, 1914

Known as the ‘Race to the Sea’ the German, French and British armies move north from the Aisne and try to outflank each other. Continues to 16th October, 1914 when the lines reach the Belgian Coast.

22nd September, 1914

First British aeroplane raid on Germany against Dusseldorf and Cologne airship sheds. Three British cruisers, HMS Aboukir, Hogue and Cressy are sunk by a German submarine off the German coast.

26th September, 1914

First Indian Army troops land in France.

October 1914

3rd October, 1914

First troops leave Canada and Newfoundland to continue their training in Britain.

10th October, 1914

German forces take the Belgian city of Antwerp.

14th October, 1914

First Canadian and Newfoundland troops arrive in Britain.

16th October, 1914

An Indian Army force leaves Bombay to secure British interests in the Persian Gulf by landing in Mesopotamia, part of the Ottoman Empire (Turkey)

19th October, 1914

First Battle of Ypres. French and British troops stand firm around the Belgian city of Ypres, preventing the German armies breaking through to the Channel ports. Continues to 22nd November, 1914.

29th October, 1914

Turkey joins the war on the side of Germany and Austria-Hungary. Turkish warships shell Russian coastal towns in the Black Sea.

31st October, 1914

The London Scottish become the first battalion of British Territorial troops to go into battle at Messines in Belgium.

November 1914

1st November, 1914

Battle of Coronel off the coast of Chile. British squadron of ships defeated by German East Asiatic Squadron. First Australian and New Zealand troops leave Australia, expecting to continue their training in Britain.

2nd November, 1914

Russia declares war on Turkey. Britain declares the North Sea to be a ‘military zone’, effectively beginning a distant blockade of Germany. Battle of Tanga. The first action of a long-running campaign in east Africa. German forces led by Colenel Payl von Lettow-Vorbeck defeat British and Indian troops. Fighting continues until 5th November, 1914. The Campaign last until November 1918.

3rd November, 1914

British ships blockading the Dardanelles bombard the Turkish forts guarding the entrance to the Straits.

5th November, 1914

Britain and France declare war on Turkey.

6th November, 1914

Indian Army troops land in Mesopotamia to protect British oil interests in neighboring Persia, and encourage an Arab revolt against Turkish rule.

7th November, 1914

Japanese Troops, with British support, capture the German naval base of Tsingtau.

22nd November, 1914

British troops enter Basra in Mesopotamia at the head of the Persian Gulf.

December 1914

2nd December, 1914

Capture of Belgrade, the Serbian capital, by the Austro-Hungarians.

3rd December, 1914

Troops of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) disembark in Egypt to complete their training after it is decided conditions in Britain are unsuitable.

8th December, 1914

Battle of Falklands. In the South Atlantic, a reinforced British naval squadron defeats the German East Asiatic Squadron.

15th December, 1914

Recapture of Belgrade by Serbian forces.

16th December, 1914

Bombardment of Scarborugh, Hartlepool and Whitby on the British east coast by German battlecruisers. 137 civilians are killed.

17th December, 1914

Turkish forces launch attacks on the Russians in the Caucasus. In difficult conditions, the Russians intially do badly but soon recover. Fightin continues until 18th January 1915.

21st December, 1914

First German aircraft raid on British south coast towns.

29th December, 1914

Battle of Sarikamish in the Caucasus. Russian troops initially pushed back bu the Turks before the situation is reversed. Battle continues until the 2nd Janaury, 1914.

1915

January 1915

4th January, 1915

London Stock Exchange reopens for the first time since the start of the war.

19th January, 1915

German airships raid Britain for the first time, attacking Great Yarmouth and King’s Lynn. Five people are killed.

24th January, 1915

Action of the Dogger Bank. Encounter between British and German battlecruisers in the North Sea.

31st January, 1915

On the Eastern Front, Germans use asphyxiating gas in artillery shells for the first time at the Battle of Bolimov.

February 1915

Timeline Heading 1

This is Timeline description, you can change me anytime click here

Timeline Heading 2

This is Timeline description, you can change me anytime click here

Timeline Heading 3

This is Timeline description, you can change me anytime click here

Timeline Heading 4

This is Timeline description, you can change me anytime click here


Information supplied within this timeline is copyrighted material from ©Imperial War Museum