This page has already been transcribed. You can find new pages to transcribe here.


[Page 351]


Government House,
New Britain,
14th September 1914. 

The Chief of the General Staff, 

As the Warships are not leaving here for Sydney until to-morrow, I take the opportunity of forwarding you some further information as to our doings yesterday. 

The flag was duly hoisted yesterday (Sunday afternoon) at 3 o'clock, the Warships in the harbour co-operating by firing a salute.

The ceremony was held on a small park in the town close to the wharf, where I erected a temporary flag-staff. I paraded all available troops and also men whom I have engaged for the Native Police Force, on three sides of a square facing the flag. The Admiral and all Officers of the fleet were present at the ceremony, which I studied to make as impressive as possible, both for the benefit of the European residents and the Natives. Immediately upon the Flag being broken the Troops gave a Royal Salute, after which the National Anthem was sung by all present. Three cheers were then given for His Majesty the King. After this the Proclamation, of which I forward you herewith a copy, was read by the Brigade Major, and the whole of the troops - Navy and Army - Native Police, and a large number of friendly natives marched past the flag in column of route and saluted it. Flagship's band attended. 

A great number of copies of Proclamation in English and in German have been posted in conspicuous places throughout the town, and copies have also been forwarded to Herbertshohe.

Immediately after the dismissal of the parade I received a message from the "Protector" lying off Herbertshohe, that the German Troops were again advancing to attach [attack] that place, which was garrisoned by 4 Companies Naval Reserves and 2 Companies Infantry under Commander Beresford. I immediately gave orders for two Companies Infantry to stand by, and soon afterwards sent them on board the "Encounter" to reinforce Herbertshohe garrison - Col. Watson being sent in command. From reports received, however, I find that the attack was not of a very serious character. 

About 5 o'clock my Cyclist Orderly returned with a letter from the Acting Governor of German New Guinea - Haber by name - reiterating his previous statement that no resistance would be offered to the occupation, but that he had no power to surrender New Britain or any other part of the German possessions. He stated that he had no objection to meeting me and discussing the situation. From his letter I find that he has retired still further into the mountain country to a place called Baining. I regarded his reply as unsatisfactory and concluded that he was merely

Current Status: