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Georgina Lydia Lee (18691965) moved in high society and, together with her husband Charles, had many contacts with members of the Establishment. In October 1913, at the age of 44, Georgina gave birth to her only child, Harry. Georgina was closely involved with the domestic war. She describes the food shortages that took hold as Britain was blockaded and the terror and carnage caused by the Zepplin air raids that assailed London. Letters from the six serving members of her family alerted her to the despair at the...
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Georgina Lydia Lee (18691965) moved in high society and, together with her husband Charles, had many contacts with members of the Establishment. In October 1913, at the age of 44, Georgina gave birth to her only child, Harry. Georgina was closely involved with the domestic war. She describes the food shortages that took hold as Britain was blockaded and the terror and carnage caused by the Zepplin air raids that assailed London. Letters from the six serving members of her family alerted her to the despair at the size of the Regular Army in 1914, the reality of the shell shortage scandal in 1915, and the shortcomings of Sir Ian Hamilton in the Gallipoli campaign. By late 1916 Georgina shared her countrymen’s anti-German feeling, as the scale of the Somme casualties became known. She writes of public figures, such as Sir Edward Grey, Asquith, Churchill, and Lloyd George and the events that shook British society in the midst of war. Her diaries offer a fascinating insight into how Britain coped with the pressures and crises of World War I on the Home Front.
Foreword Hew Strachan ix
Contemporary Map of Kensington and Chelsea xiv
Not so Remote from the Conflict - Editor's Note xvi
Map: German Air Raids over London, 1914-18 xx
Family Trees of the Davis and Lee Families xxii
Book I July 30 - August 29, 1914 1
Dread in all our hearts
Stock Exchange closed
Belgium's appeal to the King
'we are in for it at last'
weeping women at Paddington
Army and Navy Stores under siege
hunting down German spies
no standing room in St Paul's
sewing bed-jackets and pyjamas for the wounded
why Churchill raved like a lunatic
desperate need for recruits
vive le g?n?ral French!
German goods disappear from shops
no toys at Hamley's
a walk on Wimbledon Common
Asquith backs Kitchener's appeal
'mutiny' of Irish Guards
destruction of Louvain.
Book II August 30 - October 7, 1914 27
Paris prepares for siege
heroism of Captain Grenfell
Welsh distrust of 'fighting for the English'
telegram from Viceroy of India
'send a copy to the Kaiser!'
recruitment meeting in the 'worst' county
Dolgelly's blank record
Smuts brings South Africa into the War
Allied victory on the Marne
an act of vengeance?
lingering death of Georgina's father-in-law
Aboukir, Hogue and Cress torpedoed
the Mayor of Brussels arrested
a widow at eighteen.
Book III October 9 - December 10, 1914 45
Fall of Antwerp
Dora and the Lights of London
Captain Williams and HMS Hawke
fire at Glaslyn
a narrow squeak for Grandpa
an extraordinary sight at Aldershot
the German POW camp at Frimley
an unpopular resignation at the Ritz
Prince Louis of Battenberg steps down
Turkey declares war
special wedding licence needed
Charles joins the Veterans Corps
fall of Tsingtao
why Captain M?ller of the Emden was given back his sword
death of Georgina's father at Glaslyn
two Kings meet at Ypres.
Book IV December 13, 1914 - March 3, 1915 69
the last pheasant-shoot at Gelligemlyn
Guy Lee's Christmas Eve letter
the truth about the Christmas Truce
why the Germans played God Save the King
Charles Romer-Williams takes the Beagles to Belgium
American disapproval of the blockade
Mrs Paget's dinner party
the Saxons' 'truce' with the Buffs
the truth about the Retreat from Mons
farewell to young Eugene Crombie
Queen's Hall packed for Hilaire Belloc
Uncle Hugh Lee's wedding
engineering workers on strike.
Book V March 4 - May 30, 1915 91
Food parcels to POWs hi-jacked
lies about England
ammunition in short supply
Lloyd George's Factory Bill
Kitchener's appeal to the workers
'spend the shells and spare the soldiers'
the King gives up alcohol
German officers escape
how a Zeppelin helped recruitment
Georgina joins the Chelsea Branch of the Belgian Relief Committee
wounded Tommies at the London Hospital
'I've had enough of Royal Visits'
gas respirator crisis
sinking of the Lusitania
Fisher and Churchill resign
a sad visit to Rustington
Book VI June 2 - September 27, 1915 115
Lloyd George's plain speaking
'our guns are silent'
the first airman to 'bag' a Zeppelin
Guy Lee confirms the shell shortage
'everything England does is wrong!'
Sir John French and the French actress
300,000 Welsh miners on strike
Mrs Pankhurst leads a women's march on Bastille Day
emotional departures from Victoria station
'these partings are so awful'
socks knitted by crippled Belgian soldiers
'blackest week of the war so far'
reaction to 'peace proposals'
casualty lists from Gallipoli
Zeppelins over Chelsea
recruiting figures fall.
Book VII September 29, 1915 - February 12, 1916 134
Food prices escalate
the fate of Colin Dunsmure
change of command in the Dardanelles
Edith Cavell's courage
King George V's riding accident
Joffre at Downing Street
Guy Lee summoned by Plumer
sinking of a hospital ship
Uncle Alex's appendicits
lethal results of faulty grenades
Christmas at Caerynwch
the Persia torpedoed
Asquith's Compulsory Service Bill
the ironing room at Mulberry Walk
Queen Mary and the surgical supplies
Capt Guy Lee honoured
Bristol prepares for the Zeppelins.
Book VIII February 17 - November 28, 1916 156
Invidious work of the exemption tribunals
P?tain 'hero of the hour'
women bus conductors take over
blinded heroes at Anzac Day Service
fate of Sir Roger Casement
Jutland, a Pyrrhic victory?
death of Kitchener
Queen Alexandra's Rose Day
heroism of the Boy VC
August Bank Holiday cancelled
a feud at the Belgian Surgical Depot
captured submarine on display
gruesome fate of Zeppelin at Cuffley
unloading of hospital trains
Harry Lee's third birthday
death of Emperor Franz Josef.
Book IX November 29, 1916 - November 30, 1917 193
Upheaval in the Cabinet
the German Chancellor springs a surprise
third Christmas of the war
departures from Charing Cross
munitions factory disaster
submarine menace grows
problems with removals men
USA enters the war
a droll substitute for Easter eggs
Georgina to be honoured
hospital ships torpedoed
Mrs Paget and the Zeppelin
air-raid casualties at Chatham
the end of Kerensky
a tonic from Cambrai
the National Anthem on the steps of St Paul's
Georgina flies her Union Jack
cook joins the WAAC.
Book X December 2, 1917 - September 9, 1918 237
Allenby captures Jerusalem
Uncle Baynes dangerously ill
DSO awards for the Lee brothers
direct hit on Odhams Printing Works
rationing bites harder
family wiped out at Royal Hospital
'Tank Day' in Kensington
Easter Sunday in the Great Crisis
our fourth wartime wedding anniversary
the Zeebrugge Raid
de Valera arrested
call-up age extended
petrol pirates caught
Government's decree on strawberries
King of the Belgians at the Albert Hall
Aunt Edie's funeral in Bath
'did ever brute beasts deserve retribution?'
Civil War in Russia.
Book XI September 12, 1918 - November 11, 1919 265
Lee laid low by 'flu
a sinking outrage
wreath laying in Paris
captured guns in the Mall
naval mutiny at Kiel
'I could almost feel sorry for the Germans'
the Kaiser abdicates
pandemonium in London
Service for the King of the Belgians
Foch and Clemenceau in Piccadilly
'we want the Tiger'
dawn of women's franchise
Wilson at Buckingham Palace
'flu 'killing thousands'
Harry Lee starts at school
Versailles Treaty signed
anniversary of Armistice Day
Two Minutes' Silence throughout the Empire
the Lee family at the Cenotaph.
Biographical Note on Georgina Lee Ann de La Grange Sury 295
Select Bibliography 301