Sunday, January 18, 2015

Zeppelin Throws Bombs At Sandringham Palace -- January 18, 2015

On 19-January-1915, Germany made the first Zeppelin attack on British soil.  This article is from the 20-January-1915 New York Tribune.  Two Zeppelins made the raid.  None were shot down. 

Zeppelin Throws Bombs At Sandringham Palace;
Airmen Brought Down

Woman and Two Men Killed in German Raid on British Coast.
King and Queen Had Left the Palace Only Few Hours Previously.

Yarmouth Gets Five Missiles, and King's Lynn Four -- Raiders May Be Headed for London.

London. Jan. 20. -- A Zeppelin airship has been brought down at Hunstanton, a few miles north of Sandringham,  according to a dispatch from Kings Lynn to the Central News. The dispatch adds that the Zeppelin was brought down by the fire of a warship.


London. Jan. 19. -- A dispatch from Kings Lynn reports that a German air craft pasted over Sandringhm and Kings Lynn to-night and dropped several bombs, which exploded with terrific force. The attack took place at 10:45 p. m.

Confirmatory dispatches have been received by the press Association of the dropping of bombs by an air craft near Sandringham, one of the royal residences. Four bombs were dropped on Kings Lynn and others fell near Sandringham Palace. No damage was done to the palace itself. After the attack the air craft sailed In a south-westerly direction (i. e. toward London).

King George and Queen Mary, with their family, who had been staying at Sandringham, had returned, however, to London earlier in the day to resume residence in Buckingham Palace.

One bomb fell in Norfolk Square, close to the sea front, and another in South Square.  A third struck the York Road Drill Hall, fragments of the casing of the shell crashing through the glass roof of the billiard room of the headquarters of the national reserve.  A fourth missile fell near the Trinity depot. 
One man was found outside his home, on St. Peter's Plain.  His head had been crushed.  He was identified as Samuel Smith, a shoemaker.  A woman who has not yet been identified also was found dead, while a soldier was discovered in Norfolk Square with a wound in his chest. 
The concussions resulting from the exploding bombs broke the windows in a number of shops and houses.

Air Craft Carried Searchlight. 

It was dark at the time of the attack, and it was impossible, therefore, to see the air craft.  The noise of its engine, however, could plainly be heard.  It was evident that the machine carried a searchlight, as flashes of light occasionally could be seen coming from it. 

The visit of the airplane to Yarmouth lasted ten minutes.  Great excitement prevailed, and special constables, the police and the military were called out to calm the people, who streamed out of their homes when the explosions took place.  The electric supply was immediately cut off and the town was plunged in darkness. 

The whirring of the propellers of the aircraft first attracted attention to it.  Then came the explosions and the sound of breaking glass.  The first bomb was dropped near the recruiting ground and the others near the drill hall.  In all five bombs were thrown by the aviator or aviators. 

So far as can be ascertained thus far, these are the only casualties in Yarmouth, but, owing to the complete darkness that prevails as a result of the cutting off of the electric light service, this statement cannot be accepted as definite. 

The greatest damage done by any of the bombs resulted from one that fell in St. Peter's Plain, near St. Peter's Church, which damaged a whole row of houses, breaking all the windows in them and littering the street with debris, consisting of slate from the roofs and bricks. 

A Yarmouth dispatch to the Exchange Telegraph Company says it is believed that it was an aeroplane and not a Zeppelin that attached that city.  The machine later visited Sheringham, five miles from Cromer, and dropped two bombs.  No damage was done at that place. 

The town of Cromer, a watering place twenty-one miles north of Norwich, also reports being attacked by aircraft. 

About 8:30 p. m. two or more Zeppelins were reported passing over Cromer, coming from the direction of Mundesley, on the east, and going toward Weybourne, to the west.  They were distinctly seen and their engines made a tremendous noise.  It is stated that at Sheringham, to the west of Cromer, four bombs were dropped, but that no one was hurt. 

A telephone message from Gravesend states that aircraft were seen passing overhead during the evening.  They were moving in a northwesterly direction.  Shortly afterward the order to stand by at Woolwich Fort was cancelled, this indicating that further danger was not expected.

A Zeppelin appeared over Ipswich during the night, but did no damage.  Ipswich is in the county of Suffolk, south of Norfolk.  It is about seventy-five miles southwest of Yarmouth. 


Norwich. Jan. 19. -- According to accounts of the air raid reaching here, aircraft dropped bombs on Yarmouth, Sheringham, Cromer and Beeston, in the county of Norfolk.  At Sheringham a bomb dropped in Wyndham st. and went through a house, but did not explode, apparently because the fuse became detached in the descent. 

The bomb dropped at Beeston did no damage.  The bomb measured nearly four inches in diameter. 

Guthrie Daily Leader, 23-January-1915

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