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15th October 1917 - The Great War, Day by Day - The Wartime Memories Project

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

15th October 1917

On this day:

  • Daily Activity   9th Btn. (North Irish Horse) the Royal Irish Fusiliers.

    Ruyaulcourt P.10.c.8.4.

    Battalion relieved in the line by 12th Royal Irish Rifles, after a tour in which our casualties were particularly low, viz: three slightly wounded.

    We are now in our new Battalion Headquarters Nissen huts, and have quite a good Mess room. A recreation room for Officers is under construction.

    We are in the Divisional Reserve during this tour out.

    War Diaries

  • 15th October 1917  Enemy Aircraft

  • Naval Action -15th October 1917   The Action of 15 October 1917 was a naval engagement of World War I between Imperial Germany and the United States off the coast of Mind Head, Ireland.


    The American destroyer USS Cassin, under Lieutenant Commander W. N. Vernon, was operating off the coast of Ireland in October 1917. It was on anti-submarine patrols and rescue missions, as well as convoy duty. Operating out of Queenstown, Ireland, she was armed with four 4 inch guns and eight 18 inch torpedo tubes. The German submarine U-61, on a typical unrestricted U-boat mission, was cruising in British waters, attacking Allied shipping. She was armed with a deck gun and torpedoes. On 15 October 1917, Cassin sighted U-61 at about 23 miles south of Mind Head at 1330 and 5 miles from the ship. The German submarine sighted Cassin as well, she immediately submerged and began to flee. The pursuit ensued for an hour and at about 14:30, U-61's commander, Victor Dieckmann, decided to engage the tailing American warship. The Germans then turned about and surfaced to line up for a shot and fired their last torpedo. Gunner's Mate First Class Osmond Ingram noticed the incoming projectile, he quickly ran over to the depth charge gunners and ordered them to shoot charges in U-61's direction. The torpedo struck the destroyer aft on the port side before the depth charge attack could be launched and Ingram was killed in the explosion. The torpedo hit Cassin's portside stern, nearly blowing off her rudder. The American destroyer began to steam in circles, but returned a barrage of 4 inch shells which forced the U-boat to dive. Four hits damaged U-61's conning tower which discouraged her commander from continuing to attack. Besides the American sailor killed, nine others were wounded in the action. The dead sailor, Osmond Ingram, was awarded the Medal of Honor for his service on 15 October. Eventually, another American destroyer USS Porter and the British sloops HMS Jessamine and Tamarisk arrived on the scene and protected Cassin throughout the night. However, no further U-boat contacts were made. The next morning, Cassin was towed back to Queenstown by Captain Ronald Niel Stuart in HMS Snowdrop. The damaged USS Cassin was repaired and returned to active duty in July 1918. U-61 was sunk by the submarine chaser HMS PC-51 a few months later.

    John Doran

  • 15th Oct 1917 Enemy Artillery Active


    Lt THORMAN left to report to DAG on 17th October. 2Lt FREER took over duties of Adjutant.

    The National Archives Reference WO95/2361/1

  • 15th Oct 1917 Into Town

  • Oct 1917 

  • 15th Oct 1917 Into Camp

  • 15th Oct 1917 Working Parties

  • 15th Oct 1917 In the Trenches

  • 15th Oct 1917 Training

  • 15th of October 1917 Relief Complete

  • 15th Oct 1917 In the Trenches

  • 15th of October 1917 Fairly quiet at the front

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?

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Want to know more?

There are:14 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.

  • Gnr. William George Gray. MM. Royal Field Artillery 221st Trench Mortar Battery Read their Story.
  • Rifleman James Thomas Herrmann. 1st Battalion Rifle Brigade Read their Story.
  • Petty Officer Herbert Edwin Newdick. HMS White Head Read their Story.
  • Spr. Herbert Edward Saunders. Royal Engineers 225th Field Coy Read their Story.
  • Rfmn. Henry A Whatley. Kings Royal Rifles 8th Battalion

    Add a name to this list.

  • Items from the Home Front Archive

    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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