Landings at Bagamoyo


Balloon ship Manica which was present.


British troops continued to push south and towards the coast but it was suggested on 12 August 1916 that the Navy seize the port of Bagamoyo, which the British believed would be heavily defended. Then they heard that it had a garrison of only fifty men. So the British Navy went ahead with the attack. Aircraft reported lines of trenches and two large redoubts including the strongly built Government house. The Navy decided to land a force of three hundred men with ten machine guns under the command of Commander R.J. Watson. Before daylight on 15 August the squadron of VENGEANCE, CHALLENGER, MERSEY, SEVERN and HELMUTH moved in and at 0530 six groups of boats moved off. Suddenly they came under fire from one of KÖNIGSBERG’s guns and the flotilla had to put down heavy fire before it was silenced. The British marines landed on an undefended beach and swept around the flank of the German forces which fell back on to trench lines and then slowly disappeared. Captain von Boedecker, the German commander was killed and the defenders were in some disorder. Still by midday they had melted away into the bush. The British had the town at the cost of 11 casualties. The Germans had lost twelve but and an additional 19 were prisoners. For the first time, the British had captured a KÖNIGSBERG gun in battle.



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