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8th August 1915 - The Great War, Day by Day - The Wartime Memories Project

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The Wartime Memories Project - The Great War - Day by Day

8th August 1915

On this day:

  • 8th Aug 1915 HMS India sunk

  • Brigade Boxing Tournament   6th County of London Brigade RFA held the preliminary rounds of a Brigade Boxing Competition this afternoon. Battery Sergeant Major W.G. Russell, 15th London Battery, gazetted as Second Lieutenant, dated July 18th.

    War Diaries

  • 8th Aug 1915 Push Ordered

  • 8th Aug 1915 Battleship Sunk

  • 8th Aug 1915 Ship Lost

  • 8th Aug 1915 Ships Lost

  • 8th Aug 1915 Fishing Smack Sunk

  • 8th August 1915 9th Lancers Church parade & baths

  • 8th Aug 1915 Ship sunk

  • Battle of the Gulf of Riga 1915   The Battle of the Gulf of Riga was a World War I naval operation of the German High Seas Fleet against the Russian Baltic Fleet in the Gulf of Riga in the Baltic Sea in August 1915.The operation's objective was to destroy the Russian naval forces in the Gulf and facilitate the fall of Riga to the German army on the Eastern Front in 1915. The German fleet, however, failed to achieve its objective and was forced to return to its bases. Riga remained in Russian hands until it fell to the German Army on 1st of September 1917.

    In early August 1915, several powerful units of the German High Seas Fleet were transferred to the Baltic to participate in the foray into the Riga Gulf. The intention was to destroy the Russian naval forces in the area, including the pre-dreadnought battleship Slava, and to use the minelayer Deutschland to block the entrance to the Moon Sound with mines. The German naval forces, under the command of Vice Admiral Hipper, included the four Nassau-class and four Helgoland-class battleships, the battlecruisers SMS Moltke, Von der Tann, and Seydlitz, and a number of smaller craft.


    On 8th of August, the first attempt to clear the gulf was made. The old battleships SMS Braunschweig and Elsass kept Slava at bay while minesweepers cleared a path through the inner belt of mines. During this period, the rest of the German fleet remained in the Baltic and provided protection against other units of the Russian fleet. However, the approach of nightfall meant that Deutschland would be unable to mine the entrance to the Suur Strait in time and so the operation was broken off. In the meantime, the German armored cruisers SMS Roon and Prinz Heinrich were detached to shell the Russian positions at the Sőrve Peninsula in the Saaremaa island. Several Russian destroyers were anchored at Sőrve and one was slightly damaged during the bombardment. The battlecruiser Von der Tann and the light cruiser SMS Kolberg were sent to shell the island of Utö. On 16th of August, a second attempt was made to enter the gulf. The dreadnoughts SMS Nassau and Posen, four light cruisers and 31 torpedo boats breached the defenses to the gulf. On the first day of the assault, the German minesweeper T46 was sunk, as was the destroyer V99. On 17th of August, Nassau and Posen engaged in an artillery duel with Slava, resulting in three hits on the Russian ship that prompted her withdrawal. After three days, the Russian minefields had been cleared and the flotilla entered the gulf on 19 August, but reports of Allied submarines in the area prompted a German withdrawal from the gulf the following day. Throughout the operation, the German battlecruisers remained in the Baltic and provided cover for the assault into the Gulf of Riga. On the morning of the 19th, Moltke was torpedoed by the British E-class submarine HMS E1. The torpedo was not spotted until it was approximately 200 yd away. Without time to manoeuver, the ship was struck in the bow torpedo room. The explosion damaged several torpedoes in the ship, but they did not detonate themselves. Eight men were killed and 480 short tons of water entered the ship. The ship was repaired at Blohm & Voss in Hamburg between 23 August and 20 September.

    Order of battle

    • Battleship: Slava
    • Gunboats: Grozyashchiy, Khrabry, Sivuch, Korietz
    • Minelayer: Amur
    • Flotilla of 16 destroyers


    • Battleships: SMS Nassau, SMS Posen, SMS Braunschweig, SMS Elsass
    • Battlecruiser: SMS Moltke, SMS Seydlitz, SMS Von der Tann
    • Cruisers: SMS Augsburg, SMS Bremen, SMS Graudenz, SMS Pillau, SMS Roon, SMS Prinz Heinrich
    • Flotilla of 56 destroyers

    John Doran

  • 7th Gloucester lead the Attack   7th (service) Battalion Gloucestershire Regiment lead the others over the top of Chunuk Bair early on the Sunday morning.

  • 8th Aug 1915 Working Parties

  • 8th Aug 1915 On Leave

  • 8th Aug 1915 Trench Work

  • 8th Aug 1915 Change of Billets

  • 8th Aug 1915 On the March

  • 8th Aug 1915 Reliefs Completed

  • 8th Aug 1915 Artillery In Action

  • 8th Aug 1915 Artillery In Action

  • 8th Aug 1915 In the Trenches

  • 8th Aug 1915 In Action

  • 8th Aug 1915 Holding the Line

  • 8th of Aug 1915 

  • 8th August 1915 Bivouacs

Can you add to this factual information? Do you know the whereabouts of a unit on a particular day? Do you have a copy of an official war diary entry? Details of an an incident? The loss of a ship? A letter, postcard, photo or any other interesting snipts?

If your information relates only to an individual, eg. enlistment, award of a medal or death, please use this form: Add a story.

Want to know more?

There are:24 articles tagged with this date available in our Library

  These include information on officers service records, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.

Remembering those who died this day.

  • L/Cpl. Albert Henry Bailey. Auckland Mounted Rifles Read their Story.
  • Pte. Alfred Campbell. Manchester Regiment 8th Btn. A Coy Read their Story.
  • Pte. Charles Clayton. Gloucestershire Regiment 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Capt. Robert Hornidge Cullinan. Royal Munster Fusiliers 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • William Deeprose. 4th Brigade 15th Btn.
  • Pte. George Fredrick Dethridge. Welsh Regiment 8th Battalion Read their Story.
  • Sgt. Frank Doughty. Royal Field Artillery 24th Bde, 107 Bty. Read their Story.
  • Pte. P. Guy. Sherwood Foresters 6th Btn., D Coy. Read their Story.
  • Lt. Ernest Lawrence Julian. Royal Dublin Fusiliers 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. Harold Keers. 15th Btn. Read their Story.
  • L/Cpl. Alfred Law. Gloucestershire Regiment 7th Battalion Read their Story.
  • L/Cpl. Alfred Law. Gloucestershire Regiment 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • L/Cpl. Alfred Law. Gloucestershire Regiment 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Pte. Richard Seccombe. Welsh Regiment 8th Btn. Read their Story.
  • ERA. Robert Benjamin Stone. HMS India Read their Story.
  • Pte. John Thomas Walters. Gloucester Regment 7th Btn. Read their Story.
  • Sgt. Edward Samuel Lloyd Williams. Royal Welsh Fusiliers 8th Btn. Read their Story.

    Add a name to this list.

  • Items from the Home Front Archive

    Newspaper Report of Sinking
    Newspaper Report of Sinking

    More about this item

    Do you have any letters, photos, postcards, documents or memorabilia from the Great War? We would love to include copies. Please use this form to submit diary entries and letters or photographs for this new Section: add to this archive.

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