Background[edit | edit source]
Following the invasion of Kamerun after the outbreak of war between Germany and the Allies, the main military objective of France and Britain was to seize control of the colony's coast to ensure that additional men and supplies could not reach the German forces there. By mid-September 1914, British and French naval vessels had effectively blockaded the Wouri estuary and the main port of Douala.
On 21 September, the British ship, Surprise which had escorted French soldiers from Libreville, appeared before the village of Ukoko in southern Neukamerun. This town had a small German garrison and French forces wished to occupy it. The British vessel shelled the town and destroyed much of it.
Landings and battle[edit | edit source]
Following the shelling, four boats carrying French soldiers and machine guns were launched from the Surprise in an attempt to take Ukoko. The small force, under the command of Colonel Miquelard, landed on the beach but encountered fire from German units who had entrenched themselves on higher ground. Later in the afternoon, nine more boatloads of French soldiers arrived on the beach and advanced up it. The Germans now came under heavy fire from the machine guns brought from the Surprise. Many of the new German recruits fled. At three o'clock in the afternoon, the French launched a major assault on the German positions. The resistance of German forces deteriorated and they eventually retreated.
During the battle, the Germans made attempts to attack the British naval vessel, Surprise which was situated in Corisco Bay. The steamer Itolo and armed launch Khios were both sunk in attacks against the British ship.
Aftermath[edit | edit source]
Following the battle, the column under the command of Miquelard would push eastward along the southern border of Spanish Guinea. The German force that had once occupied Ukoko retreated to Mbini in the neutral Spanish colony of Rio Muni to the north. This practice would be followed throughout the rest of the campaign where German units would escape to the Spanish colony and surrender there. The action at Ukoko, along with the landings that took place at Duala secured the coast of Kamerun for the Allies and greatly restricted the movements of German forces.
Notes[edit | edit source]
- D'Almieda 2008.
- "Verteidigung Ukokos".
- Reynolds, Churchill, Miller 1916.
References[edit | edit source]
- D'Almeida, Alain. "Cocobeach: La Stele Aux Heros De La Guerre Renovee." Croissance Saine: Le Journal. N.p., 11 Nov. 2008. Web. 24 Dec. 2012. <http://www.croissancesaine.org/afficher_news.php?IDActualite=2602>.
- "Der Raubzug Gegen Unsere Kolonien-Verteidigung Ukokos." Der Täglichen Rundschau (Berlin) 1915 Web.<http://www.jaduland.de/kolonien/raub/raubzugk.html>.
- Reynolds, Francis J., Churchill, Allen L., and Miller, Francis T. "Chapter 11 - Campaign in Togoland and the Cameroons." "The Story of the Great War". Vol. III (of VIII). 1916.
|This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).|