This is the story of the 30,490 men that left Dundee to fight in the First World War and of the people left at home.
19th January 1915
In the first airborne attack on British soil, Zeppelins bomb Great Yarmouth and King's Lynn, killing five civilians.
18th February 1915
Blockade of Britain by German U-boats begins. All vessels are considered viable targets, including those from neutral countries.
19th February 1915
Start of the Royal Navy long-range bombardment of Ottoman artillery around Dardanelles and Gallipoli begins.
10th March 1915
The British Offensive at Neuve Chapelle begins. Allied losses amount to 12,800 in two days. Poor quality and shortage of British shells partly to blame, initiating the 'Shell Crisis'.
22nd - 22nd April 1915
Second Battle of Ypres begins. Germany 'successfully' uses poison gas for the first time. Delivered accurately, a poison gas attack was capable of killing thousands on men in a matter of minutes as well as causing horrific injuries and panic.
25th April 1915
Allied landing at Gallipoli begins and fighting continues to January 1916 and would lead to casualties in the region of 500,000 on all sides. Picture: Australian Engineers heading to Gallipoli.
26th April 1915
Italy joins the war on the allies side. This is a big event for the Italian community in Dundee and elsewhere in Scotland
7th May 1915
A German U-boat torpedoes the British liner Lusitania with the loss of American lives. A diplomatic crisis between the US and Germany ensues.
9th - 10th May 1915
The Battle of Aubers Ridge was a British offensive on the Western Front in support to the Second Battle of Artois, a Franco-British offensive intended to exploit the German diversion of troops to the Eastern Front.
9th May 1915
First of Kitchener's New Armies leave for overseas service 9th May - 9th (Scottish) Division. The initial call for 100,000 volunteers was far exceeded when almost half a million men enlisted in just two months
15th - 25th May 1915
The Battle of Festubert was the continuation of the Battle of Aubers Ridge (9 May) and part of the larger French Second Battle of Artois. It was intended to assist the French offensive against Vimy Ridge near Arras, by attracting German divisions to the British front, rather than reinforcing the defenders opposite the French.
25th May 1915
The 'Shell Crisis' emerged in 1915 because the sustained use of artillery was not anticipated causing a shortage of shells. The shortage was widely publicised leading to Lloyd George being appointed as Minister of Munitions. This in turn led to more women going into munitions work.
15th July 1915
National Registration Act introduced in Britain, obliging all men of military age to register but also anyone between age 16 and 60, including women.
6th August 1915
Second landing at Gallipoli ending in failure when the allies are pinned to the coast by Turkish troops.
16th August 1915
Britain's maritime defences are breached when a U-boat bombards Whitehaven on the north west English coast.
25th September - 15th October 1915
The Battle of Loos begins and includes thirty-six Scottish battalions and 30,000 Scots going ‘over the top’ on the first day. It was the largest land battle in British military history and ended with over 60,000 British casualties. The 25th was a dark day Dundee's Own; of the 20 officers and 420 men that took part in the attack, 19 officers and 230 men were killed or injured. Read more about The Battle of Loos...
5th October 1915
British and French forces land at Salonika in support of Serbia to strengthen Bulgarian front – and as a result Bulgaria later declare war on Serbia and join Central Powers.
12th October 1915
Edith Cavell, a British nurse, is executed by German firing squad for espionage for aiding escaped POWs escape from Belgium to Holland.
9th November 1915
While en route from Salonica to Marseilles, the SS Californian was torpedoed and sunk off the coast of Greece by a German U-boat. Californian was built in Dundee by Caledon Shipbuilding & Engineering Company. Launched in 1901, she was at the time the largest ship ever built in Dundee. SS Californian is more often remembered in relation to the Titanic disaster in 1912 and the Californian's alleged failure to conclusively investigate the signs that Titanic may have been in distress.
27th November 1915
The No-Conscription Fellowship hold its first national convention in London to resist legal and forcible conscription into the armed forces. Read how Dundee was also a leading centre for the anti-war movement.
15th December 1915
General Sir Douglas Haig replaces Sir John French as Commander in Chief of the British Expeditionary Force in France and Belgium.
20th December 1915
Allies evacuate 83,000 troops from Suvla Bay and ANZAC Cove in Gallipoli. Not one soldier or sailor is killed in the withdrawal. Dundee men among those evacuated.