Stalag Luft III
Stalag Luft III was a Luftwaffe-run prisoner of war camp during the Second World War, which held captured Western Allied air force personnel. The camp was established in March 1942 in the German province of Lower Silesia near the town of Sagan, 160 kilometres south-east of Berlin; the site was selected. It is best known for two escape plots by Allied POWs, one in 1943 that became the basis of a fictionalised film, The Wooden Horse, based on a book by escapee Eric Williams; the second breakout—the so-called Great Escape—of March 1944, conceived by Royal Air Force Squadron Leader Roger Bushell, was authorised by the senior British officer at Stalag Luft III, Herbert Massey. A fictionalised version of the escape was depicted in a film, The Great Escape, based on a book by former prisoner Paul Brickhill; the camp was liberated by Soviet forces in January 1945. The German military followed a practice whereby each branch of the military was responsible for the POWs of equivalent branches. Hence the Luftwaffe was responsible for any Allied aircrew taken prisoner.
This included captured naval aviators, such as members of the British Fleet Air Arm. In a few cases, other non-air force personnel were held at Stalag Luft III. Stammlager Luft was Luftwaffe nomenclature for a POW camp. While the camp held only POWs who were officers, it was not known by the usual terms for such camps – Offizier Lager or Oflag, and camp expansions added compounds for non-commissioned officers. The first compound of the camp was completed and opened on 21 March 1942; the first POWs, or kriegies, as they called themselves, to be housed at Stalag Luft III were British and other Commonwealth officers, arriving in April 1942. The Centre Compound was opened on 11 April 1942 and held British and other Commonwealth NCOs; the North Compound for British airmen, opened on 29 March 1943. A South Compound for Americans was opened in September 1943 and USAAF prisoners began arriving at the camp in significant numbers the following month and the West Compound was opened in July 1944 for U. S. officers.
Each compound consisted of fifteen single-story huts. Each 3.0-by-3.7-metre bunkroom slept fifteen men in five triple-deck bunks. The camp grew to 24 hectares in size and housed about 2,500 Royal Air Force officers, about 7,500 U. S. Army Air Forces, about 900 officers from other Allied air forces, for a total of 10,949 inmates, including some support officers; the prison camp had a number of design features that made escape difficult. The digging of escape tunnels, in particular, was made difficult by several factors: the barracks housing the prisoners were raised 60 centimetres off the ground to make it easier for guards to detect tunnelling; the loose, collapsible sand meant the structural integrity of any tunnel would be poor. A third defence against tunnelling was the placement of seismograph microphones around the perimeter of the camp, which were expected to detect any sounds of digging. A substantial library with schooling facilities was available, where many POWs earned degrees such as languages, engineering or law.
The exams were supplied by the Red Cross and supervised by academics such as a Master of King's College, a POW in Luft III. The prisoners built a theatre and put on high-quality bi-weekly performances featuring all the current West End shows; the prisoners used the camp amplifier to broadcast a news and music radio station they named Station KRGY, short for Kriegsgefangener and published two newspapers, the Circuit and the Kriegie Times, which were issued four times a week. POWs operated a system whereby newcomers to the camp were vetted, to prevent German agents from infiltrating their ranks. Any POW who could not be vouched for by two POWs who knew the prisoner by sight was interrogated and afterwards escorted continually by other prisoners, until such time as he was deemed to be a genuine Allied POW. Several infiltrators were discovered by this method and none is known to have escaped detection in Luft III; the German guards were referred to by POWs as "goons" and, unaware of the Allied connotation, willingly accepted the nickname after being told it stood for "German Officer Or Non-Com".
German guards were followed everywhere they went by prisoners, who used an elaborate system of signals to warn others of their location. The guards' movements were carefully recorded in a logbook kept by a rota of officers. Unable to stop what the prisoners called the "Duty Pilot" system, the Germans allowed it to continue and on one occasion the book was used by Kommandant von Lindeiner to bring charges against two guards who had slunk away from duty several hours early; the camp's 800 Luftwaffe guards were either too old for combat duty or young men convalescing after long tours of duty or from wounds. Because the guards were Luftwaffe personnel, the prisoners were accorded far better treatment than that granted to other POWs in Germany. Deputy Commandant Major Gustav Simoleit, a professor of history and ethnology before the war, spoke several languages, including English, Russian and Czech
Siege of Antwerp (1914)
The Siege of Antwerp was an engagement between the German and the Belgian and French armies around the fortified city of Antwerp during World War I. German troops besieged a garrison of Belgian fortress troops, the Belgian field army and the British Royal Naval Division in the Antwerp area, after the German invasion of Belgium in August 1914; the city, ringed by forts known as the National Redoubt, was besieged to the south and east by German forces. The Belgian forces in Antwerp conducted three sorties in late September and early October, which interrupted German plans to send troops to France, where reinforcements were needed to counter the French armies and the British Expeditionary Force. A German bombardment of the Belgian fortifications with heavy and super-heavy artillery began on 28 September; the Belgian garrison had no hope of victory without relief and despite the arrival of the Royal Naval Division beginning on 3 October, the Germans penetrated the outer ring of forts. When the German advance began to compress a corridor from the west of the city along the Dutch border to the coast, through which the Belgians at Antwerp had maintained contact with the rest of unoccupied Belgium, the Belgian Field Army commenced a withdrawal westwards towards the coast.
On 9 October, the remaining garrison surrendered, the Germans occupied the city and some British and Belgian troops escaped to the Netherlands to the north and were interned for the duration of the war. Belgian troops from Antwerp withdrew to the Yser river, close to the French border and dug in, to begin the defence of the last unoccupied part of Belgium and fought the Battle of the Yser against the German 4th Army in October and November 1914; the Belgian Army held the area until late in 1918, when it participated in the Allied liberation of Belgium. The city of Antwerp was defended by numerous forts and other defensive positions, under the command of the Military Governor General Victor Deguise, was considered to be impregnable. Since the 1880s, Belgian defence planning had been based on holding barrier forts on the Meuse at Liège and at the confluence of the Meuse and the Sambre rivers at Namur, to prevent French or German armies from crossing the river, with the option of a retreat to the National redoubt at Antwerp, as a last resort, until the European powers guaranteeing Belgian neutrality could intervene.
The National redoubt consisted of a dozen older forts around 5 kilometres outside to the city, completed in the 1860s, with an enceinte around the town abutting the Scheldt estuary at either end, with wet ditches around the enceinte and forts. The principal line of resistance comprised a ring of 21 forts, 10–15 kilometres outside the city, built after 1882. A group of two forts and three coastal batteries defended the Scheldt and there were a small number of prepared inundations. Forts built at Liège and Namur on the Meuse were of similar construction and intended to be "barrier forts and bridgeheads", a first line of defence in the event of an invasion from the east or south-east. On 2 August 1914, the Belgian government refused the passage of German troops through Belgium to France and on the night of 3/4 August the Belgian General Staff ordered the 3rd Division to Liège to obstruct a German advance; the German army invaded Belgium on the morning of 4 August. Covered by the 3rd Division, the Liège fortress garrison, a screen of the Cavalry Division and detachments from Liège and Namur, the rest of the Belgian Field Army closed up to the river Gete and by 4 August the 1st Division had assembled at Tienen, the 5th Division at Perwez, the 2nd Division at Leuven and the 6th Division at Wavre, covering central and western Belgium and the communications towards Antwerp.
German cavalry appeared at Visé early on 4 August and found the bridge down and Belgian troops on the west bank. The Germans found a ford, crossed the river and forced the Belgians to retire towards Liège. By the evening it was clear to the Belgian High Command that the 3rd Division and the Liège garrison were in the path of a large invasion force. On 5 August the Battle of Liège began, when the Germans tried to capture the fortified city of Liège by a coup de main and attempted a night attack, which collapsed in confusion until General Erich Ludendorff rallied the infantry. Ludendorff attacked again around noon on 6 August and found no opposition in the city, the Belgian 3rd Division having been withdrawn to the Gete; the Germans began a siege of the fortress, which fell on 16 August. On 10 August German cavalry reached the Gete and Jägers began to move northwards to Diest and Hasselt. On 12 August German cavalry and Jäger attacked at the Battle of Halen and were driven off after a ten-hour battle.
By 17 August, a huge number of German troops had crossed into Belgium between the Meuse and Gete, despite the demolitions carried out by the Belgian Army and paramilitary Garde Civique. The Belgian position on the right flank of the Gete, was threatened by a flanking manoeuvre through Huy. On 18 August the Germans attacked again, captured Halen, entered Tienen and attacked the 1st Division frontally and on the northern flank, which the 1st Division repulsed only with great difficulty. With information that five German corps and six reserve corps were in Belgium and with no support from the French Army and British Expeditionary Force ready, the Belgian Field Army was ordered to withdraw towards Antwerp on the evening of 18 August, it arrived on 20 August, with little interference from German advanced parties, except for an engagement between the 1st Division and the German IX Corps near Tienen, in which the Belgians had 1,630 casualties. Brussels, the Belgian capital, wa
World War II
World War II known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries; the major participants threw their entire economic and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China, it included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, the only use of nuclear weapons in war. Japan, which aimed to dominate Asia and the Pacific, was at war with China by 1937, though neither side had declared war on the other. World War II is said to have begun on 1 September 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Germany and subsequent declarations of war on Germany by France and the United Kingdom.
From late 1939 to early 1941, in a series of campaigns and treaties, Germany conquered or controlled much of continental Europe, formed the Axis alliance with Italy and Japan. Under the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact of August 1939, Germany and the Soviet Union partitioned and annexed territories of their European neighbours, Finland and the Baltic states. Following the onset of campaigns in North Africa and East Africa, the fall of France in mid 1940, the war continued between the European Axis powers and the British Empire. War in the Balkans, the aerial Battle of Britain, the Blitz, the long Battle of the Atlantic followed. On 22 June 1941, the European Axis powers launched an invasion of the Soviet Union, opening the largest land theatre of war in history; this Eastern Front trapped most crucially the German Wehrmacht, into a war of attrition. In December 1941, Japan launched a surprise attack on the United States as well as European colonies in the Pacific. Following an immediate U. S. declaration of war against Japan, supported by one from Great Britain, the European Axis powers declared war on the U.
S. in solidarity with their Japanese ally. Rapid Japanese conquests over much of the Western Pacific ensued, perceived by many in Asia as liberation from Western dominance and resulting in the support of several armies from defeated territories; the Axis advance in the Pacific halted in 1942. Key setbacks in 1943, which included a series of German defeats on the Eastern Front, the Allied invasions of Sicily and Italy, Allied victories in the Pacific, cost the Axis its initiative and forced it into strategic retreat on all fronts. In 1944, the Western Allies invaded German-occupied France, while the Soviet Union regained its territorial losses and turned toward Germany and its allies. During 1944 and 1945 the Japanese suffered major reverses in mainland Asia in Central China, South China and Burma, while the Allies crippled the Japanese Navy and captured key Western Pacific islands; the war in Europe concluded with an invasion of Germany by the Western Allies and the Soviet Union, culminating in the capture of Berlin by Soviet troops, the suicide of Adolf Hitler and the German unconditional surrender on 8 May 1945.
Following the Potsdam Declaration by the Allies on 26 July 1945 and the refusal of Japan to surrender under its terms, the United States dropped atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 6 and 9 August respectively. With an invasion of the Japanese archipelago imminent, the possibility of additional atomic bombings, the Soviet entry into the war against Japan and its invasion of Manchuria, Japan announced its intention to surrender on 15 August 1945, cementing total victory in Asia for the Allies. Tribunals were set up by fiat by the Allies and war crimes trials were conducted in the wake of the war both against the Germans and the Japanese. World War II changed the political social structure of the globe; the United Nations was established to foster international co-operation and prevent future conflicts. The Soviet Union and United States emerged as rival superpowers, setting the stage for the nearly half-century long Cold War. In the wake of European devastation, the influence of its great powers waned, triggering the decolonisation of Africa and Asia.
Most countries whose industries had been damaged moved towards economic expansion. Political integration in Europe, emerged as an effort to end pre-war enmities and create a common identity; the start of the war in Europe is held to be 1 September 1939, beginning with the German invasion of Poland. The dates for the beginning of war in the Pacific include the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War on 7 July 1937, or the Japanese invasion of Manchuria on 19 September 1931. Others follow the British historian A. J. P. Taylor, who held that the Sino-Japanese War and war in Europe and its colonies occurred and the two wars merged in 1941; this article uses the conventional dating. Other starting dates sometimes used for World War II include the Italian invasion of Abyssinia on 3 October 1935; the British historian Antony Beevor views the beginning of World War II as the Battles of Khalkhin Gol fought between Japan and the fo
World War I
World War I known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history, it is one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide. On 28 June 1914, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb Yugoslav nationalist, assassinated the Austro-Hungarian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, leading to the July Crisis. In response, on 23 July Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia. Serbia's reply failed to satisfy the Austrians, the two moved to a war footing. A network of interlocking alliances enlarged the crisis from a bilateral issue in the Balkans to one involving most of Europe.
By July 1914, the great powers of Europe were divided into two coalitions: the Triple Entente—consisting of France and Britain—and the Triple Alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy. Russia felt it necessary to back Serbia and, after Austria-Hungary shelled the Serbian capital of Belgrade on the 28th, partial mobilisation was approved. General Russian mobilisation was announced on the evening of 30 July; when Russia failed to comply, Germany declared war on 1 August in support of Austria-Hungary, with Austria-Hungary following suit on 6th. German strategy for a war on two fronts against France and Russia was to concentrate the bulk of its army in the West to defeat France within four weeks shift forces to the East before Russia could mobilise. On 2 August, Germany demanded free passage through Belgium, an essential element in achieving a quick victory over France; when this was refused, German forces invaded Belgium on 3 August and declared war on France the same day. On 12 August and France declared war on Austria-Hungary.
In November 1914, the Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of the Alliance, opening fronts in the Caucasus and the Sinai Peninsula. The war was fought in and drew upon each power's colonial empire as well, spreading the conflict to Africa and across the globe; the Entente and its allies would become known as the Allied Powers, while the grouping of Austria-Hungary and their allies would become known as the Central Powers. The German advance into France was halted at the Battle of the Marne and by the end of 1914, the Western Front settled into a battle of attrition, marked by a long series of trench lines that changed little until 1917. In 1915, Italy opened a front in the Alps. Bulgaria joined the Central Powers in 1915 and Greece joined the Allies in 1917, expanding the war in the Balkans; the United States remained neutral, although by doing nothing to prevent the Allies from procuring American supplies whilst the Allied blockade prevented the Germans from doing the same the U. S. became an important supplier of war material to the Allies.
After the sinking of American merchant ships by German submarines, the revelation that the Germans were trying to incite Mexico to make war on the United States, the U. S. declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917. Trained American forces would not begin arriving at the front in large numbers until mid-1918, but the American Expeditionary Force would reach some two million troops. Though Serbia was defeated in 1915, Romania joined the Allied Powers in 1916 only to be defeated in 1917, none of the great powers were knocked out of the war until 1918; the 1917 February Revolution in Russia replaced the Tsarist autocracy with the Provisional Government, but continuing discontent at the cost of the war led to the October Revolution, the creation of the Soviet Socialist Republic, the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk by the new government in March 1918, ending Russia's involvement in the war. This allowed the transfer of large numbers of German troops from the East to the Western Front, resulting in the German March 1918 Offensive.
This offensive was successful, but the Allies rallied and drove the Germans back in their Hundred Days Offensive. Bulgaria was the first Central Power to sign an armistice—the Armistice of Salonica on 29 September 1918. On 30 October, the Ottoman Empire capitulated. On 4 November, the Austro-Hungarian empire agreed to the Armistice of Villa Giusti after being decisively defeated by Italy in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto. With its allies defeated, revolution at home, the military no longer willing to fight, Kaiser Wilhelm abdicated on 9 November and Germany signed an armistice on 11 November 1918. World War I was a significant turning point in the political, cultural and social climate of the world; the war and its immediate aftermath sparked numerous uprisings. The Big Four (Britain, the United States, It
Conservatism is a political and social philosophy promoting traditional social institutions in the context of culture and civilization. The central tenets of conservatism include tradition, hierarchy and property rights. Conservatives seek to preserve a range of institutions such as religion, parliamentary government, property rights, with the aim of emphasizing social stability and continuity; the more extreme elements—reactionaries—oppose modernism and seek a return to "the way things were". The first established use of the term in a political context originated in 1818 with François-René de Chateaubriand during the period of Bourbon Restoration that sought to roll back the policies of the French Revolution. Associated with right-wing politics, the term has since been used to describe a wide range of views. There is no single set of policies regarded as conservative because the meaning of conservatism depends on what is considered traditional in a given place and time, thus conservatives from different parts of the world—each upholding their respective traditions—may disagree on a wide range of issues.
Edmund Burke, an 18th-century politician who opposed the French Revolution but supported the American Revolution, is credited as one of the main theorists of conservatism in Great Britain in the 1790s. According to Quintin Hogg, the chairman of the British Conservative Party in 1959: "Conservatism is not so much a philosophy as an attitude, a constant force, performing a timeless function in the development of a free society, corresponding to a deep and permanent requirement of human nature itself". In contrast to the tradition-based definition of conservatism, some political theorists such as Corey Robin define conservatism in terms of a general defense of social and economic inequality. From this perspective, conservatism is less an attempt to uphold traditional institutions and more, "a meditation on—and theoretical rendition of—the felt experience of having power, seeing it threatened, trying to win it back". Liberal conservatism incorporates the classical liberal view of minimal government intervention in the economy.
Individuals should be free to participate in the market and generate wealth without government interference. However, individuals cannot be depended on to act responsibly in other spheres of life, therefore liberal conservatives believe that a strong state is necessary to ensure law and order and social institutions are needed to nurture a sense of duty and responsibility to the nation. Liberal conservatism is a variant of conservatism, influenced by liberal stances; as these latter two terms have had different meanings over time and across countries, liberal conservatism has a wide variety of meanings. The term referred to the combination of economic liberalism, which champions laissez-faire markets, with the classical conservatism concern for established tradition, respect for authority and religious values, it contrasted itself with classical liberalism, which supported freedom for the individual in both the economic and social spheres. Over time, the general conservative ideology in many countries adopted economic liberal arguments and the term liberal conservatism was replaced with conservatism.
This is the case in countries where liberal economic ideas have been the tradition such as the United States and are thus considered conservative. In other countries where liberal conservative movements have entered the political mainstream, such as Italy and Spain, the terms liberal and conservative may be synonymous; the liberal conservative tradition in the United States combines the economic individualism of the classical liberals with a Burkean form of conservatism. A secondary meaning for the term liberal conservatism that has developed in Europe is a combination of more modern conservative views with those of social liberalism; this has developed as an opposition to the more collectivist views of socialism. This involves stressing what are now conservative views of free market economics and belief in individual responsibility, with social liberal views on defence of civil rights and support for a limited welfare state. In continental Europe, this is sometimes translated into English as social conservatism.
Conservative liberalism is a variant of liberalism that combines liberal values and policies with conservative stances, or more the right-wing of the liberal movement. The roots of conservative liberalism are found at the beginning of the history of liberalism; until the two World Wars, in most European countries the political class was formed by conservative liberals, from Germany to Italy. Events after World War I brought the more radical version of classical liberalism to a more conservative type of liberalism. Libertarian conservatism describes certain political ideologies within the United States and Canada which combine libertarian economic issues with aspects of conservatism, its four main branches are constitutionalism, paleolibertarianism, small government conservatism and Christian libertarianism. They differ from paleoconservatives, in that they are in favor of more personal and economic freedom. Agorists such as Samuel Edward Konkin III labeled libertarian conservatism right-libertarianism.
In contrast to paleoconservatives, libertarian conservatives support strict laissez-faire policies such as free trade, opposition to any national bank and opposition to business regulations. They are vehemently opposed to environmental regulations, corporate welfare and other areas of economic intervention. Many conservatives in the United States, be
Battle of Flers–Courcelette
The Battle of Flers–Courcelette was fought during the Battle of the Somme in France, by the French Sixth Army and the British Fourth Army and Reserve Army, against the German 1st Army, during the First World War. The Anglo-French attack of 15 September began the third period of the Battle of the Somme but by its conclusion on 22 September, the strategic objective of a decisive victory had not been achieved; the infliction of many casualties on the German front divisions and the capture of the villages of Courcelette and Flers had been a considerable tactical victory but the German defensive success on the British right flank, made exploitation and the use of cavalry impossible. Tanks were used in battle for the first time in history and the Canadian Corps and the New Zealand Division fought for the first time on the Somme. On 16 September, Jagdstaffel 2, a specialist fighter squadron, began operations with five new Albatros D. I fighters, which were capable of challenging British air supremacy for the first time since the beginning of the battle.
The attempt to advance on the right and pivot on the left failed but the British gained about 2,500 yd in general and captured High Wood, moving forward about 3,500 yd in the centre, beyond Flers and Courcelette. The Fourth Army crossed Bazentin Ridge, which exposed the German rear-slope defences beyond to ground observation and on 18 September, the Quadrilateral, where the British advance had been frustrated on the right flank, was captured. Arrangements were begun to follow up the tactical success which, after supply and weather delays, began on 25 September at the Battle of Morval. In September, the German armies on the Somme lost about 130,000 casualties, the most costly month of the battle. Combined with the losses at Verdun and on the Eastern Front, the German Empire was brought closer to military collapse than at any time before the autumn of 1918. At the beginning of August, optimistic that the Brusilov Offensive on the Eastern Front in Russia, would continue to absorb German and Austro-Hungarian reserves and that the Germans had abandoned the Battle of Verdun, General Sir Douglas Haig, commander of the British Expeditionary Force in France, advocated to the War Committee in London, that relentless pressure be kept on the German armies in France for as long as possible.
Haig had hoped that the delay in producing tanks had been overcome and that enough would be ready in September. Despite the small numbers of tanks available and the limited time for the training of crews, Haig planned to use them in the mid-September battle being planned with the French, in view of the importance of the general Allied offensive being conducted on the Western Front in France, on the Italian front by Italy against the Austro-Hungarians and by General Aleksei Brusilov in Russia, which could not continue indefinitely. Haig believed that the German defence of the Somme front was weakening and that by mid-September might collapse altogether. By September, Ferdinand Foch the commander of Groupe d'armées du Nord and co-ordinator of the Somme offensive, had stopped trying to get the armies on the Somme to attack which had proved impossible and instead make separate sequenced attacks, successively to envelop the German fortifications. Foch wanted to increase the size and tempo of attacks, to weaken the German defence and achieve rupture, a general German collapse.
Haig had been reluctant to participate in August, when the Fourth Army was not close enough to the German third position to make a general attack practicable. The main effort was being made north of the Somme by the British and Foch had to acquiesce, while the Fourth Army closed up to the third position. To help the Fourth Army, the Reserve Army was to resume attacks against Thiepval and for the first time attack into the Ancre river valley, the Fourth Army was to capture the German intermediate and second positions from Guillemont to Martinpuich and the third position from Morval to le Sars, as the Sixth Army attacked the intermediate line from Le Fôret to Cléry the third position from the Somme to Rancourt. On the south side of the river, the Tenth Army would commence its postponed attack from Barleux to Chilly. On 28 August, General Erich von Falkenhayn, the Chief of the General Staff of Oberste Heeresleitung, simplified the German command structure on the Western Front by establishing two army groups.
Heeresgruppe Kronprinz Rupprecht controlled the 6th Army, 1st Army, 2nd Army and 7th Army, from Lille to the boundary of Heeresgruppe Deutscher Kronprinz, from south of the Somme battlefield to beyond Verdun. Armeegruppe Gallwitz-Somme was dissolved and General Max von Gallwitz reverted to the command of the 2nd Army; the emergency in Russia caused by the Brusilov Offensive, the entry of Rumania into the war and French counter-attacks at the Verdun, put further strain on the German army. Falkenhayn was replaced by Hindenburg and Ludendorff; this Third OHL ordered an end to attacks at Verdun and the despatch of troops to Rumania and the Somme front. Flers is a village 9 mi north-east of Albert, 4 mi south of Bapaume, to the east of Martinpuich, west of Lesbœufs and to the north-east of Delville Wood; the village is on the D 197 from Longueval to Ligny Thilloy. In 1916, the village was defended by the Switch Line, Flers Trench on the western outskirts, Flea Trench and Box and Cox were behind the village in front of Gird Trench and Gueudecourt.
Courcelette is near the D 929 Albert–Bapaume road, 7 mi north-east of Albert, to the north-east of Pozières and south-west of Le Sars. Sinc
John Bigelow was an American lawyer and statesman. Born in Malden-on-Hudson, New York, John Bigelow, Sr. graduated in 1835 from Union College, where he was a member of the Sigma Phi Society and the Philomathean Society and was admitted to the bar in 1838. From 1849 to 1861, he was one of the co-owners of the New York Evening Post. Bigelow began his political career as a reform Democrat, working with William Cullen Bryant in New York. In 1848, his antislavery convictions led him to leave the party, he joined the Free Soil Party, supporting the candidacy of John C. Fremont for President in that year. In 1856, he led other former Democrats into the newly-formed Republican party. After the party's nominee, Abraham Lincoln, was elected President in 1860, Lincoln appointed him American Consul in Paris in 1861, progressing to Chargé d'Affaires and Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to the Court of Napoleon III. In this capacity, working together with Charles Francis Adams, the American Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Bigelow helped to block the attempts to have France and the United Kingdom intervene in the American Civil War in favor of the Confederacy, thereby played a material role in the Union victory.
In 1865, he was appointed American Ambassador to France. After leaving this position, he went to Germany, where he lived for three years, through the period of the Franco-Prussian War, became a friend of Otto von Bismarck. After the war's conclusion, he returned to New York, where he assisted his old friend Samuel J. Tilden in opposing the corruption that flourished in New York City under William Magear Tweed; because of the universal respect in which Bigelow was held in New York, he was offered nominations by both political parties for state office in 1872. Under the influence of Tilden, Bigelow decided to rejoin the Democratic party, accepted its nomination, was elected Secretary of State of New York, a position he held until 1876; when the Democrats nominated Tilden for President in 1876, he served as Tilden's campaign manager, in that capacity advised Tilden in the famous dispute over the result of the presidential election. Tilden died a decade after the dispute was decided in favor of his rival, Rutherford B.
Hayes, Bigelow acted as one of Tilden's Estate Trust Executors. He carried out Tilden's wishes, over several years, to develop the New York Public Library and served as the first president of the Library, he was a staunch proponent of the development of the Panama Canal. He was a friend of Philippe Bunau-Varilla, who brought Panama's declaration of Independence to Bigelow's home. Panama's first proposed flag, made there by Mrs. Bunau Varilla, was rejected by the Panamanians, who made their own. Bigelow's writing career, begun with Bryant on the New York Evening Post, included several books, he was one of the first Americans to visit Haiti with an open mind, published The Wisdom of the Haitians, before the Civil War, was one of the few American works to take a positive view of Haitian independence. He published an edition of The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin in 1868 and The Life of Samuel J. Tilden in 1895. On June 11, 1850, Bigelow married Jane Tunis Poultney and they had nine children, they included: John Bigelow, Jr. graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York in 1877.
He served in the United States Army in Texas with the Buffalo Soldiers, taught at West Point, served again in the West, fought and was wounded in Cuba. He retired in October 1904. From 1905-1910, he was a professor at M. I. T. During World War I, he was served in Washington, he traveled and wrote until his death in 1936. Poultney Bigelow was a noted journalist and editor. Flora Bigelow married son of Ivor Bertie Guest, 1st Baron Wimborne. On August 8, 2001, New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani signed a bill adding the name "John Bigelow Plaza" to the intersection of 41st Street and Fifth Avenue, directly in front of the famous main branch of the New York Public Library, his estate at Highland Falls, New York, known as The Squirrels, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. The Life Of Samuel J. Tilden, Written by John Bigelow, 1895. Revised and edited by. 3 volumes. New York: Baker & Taylor Co. 1909. Mellander, Gustavo A; the United States in Panamanian Politics: The Intriguing Formative Years.
Daville,Ill.:Interstate Publishers. OCLC 138568. Mellander, Gustavo A.. Charles Edward Magoon: The Panama Years. Río Piedras, Puerto Rico: Editorial Plaza Mayor. ISBN 1-56328-155-4. OCLC 42970390. Bigelow Genealogy at fp.enter.net Bigelow and Union College, in NYT on May 18, 1913 Clapp, Margaret A.. Forgotten First Citizen: John Bigelow. John Bigelow Papers, The New York Public Library; the Correspondence of John Bigelow, Union College Chisholm, Hugh, ed.. "Bigelow, John". Encyclopædia Britannica. 3. Cambridge University Press. Works by John Bigelow at Project Gutenberg Works by or about John Bigelow at Internet Archive