The Rainbow. A World War One on Canada's West Coast Timeline

Did the Canadians do some intelligence garthering with that unspotted motor launch? How fast will that information be able to get back to Esquimalt and put to use?
 

Driftless

Donor
Did the Canadians do some intelligence garthering with that unspotted motor launch? How fast will that information be able to get back to Esquimalt and put to use?

Good point, but aren't most of the transmission lines on the west side of Vancouver Island out of commission? Is there another avenue for that info to get relayed back to Esquimalt?
 

Nick P

Donor
......Leipzig shrank into the middle distance offshore. At 1145 she signaled by Morse light,

SMOKE FROM SHIP DUE SOUTH OVER THE HORIZON

15 minutes later Leipzig signaled, SHIP SIGHTED WARSHIP MASTS AND THREE FUNNELS

SMS Stettin, identical sistership to Nürnberg.
SMS_Stettin_1912_LOC_hec_01151.jpg

I wonder what the Izumo looks like?

 
If Mr. 3 funnel warship is the Izumo, and if the IJN want to fight (I dont think the DOW had happened yet) the the Germans need to split and run ASAP. Tje German guns will struggle to penetrate the thinnest portions of the Izumos belt. Closing to torpedo range will likely get the Leipzig buried in 6" gunfire before a coup de grace from torpedoes or 8" shells finished her off.

Of course, it's theoretically possible that Izumo, not yet at war, is just showing up to scare the hell out of the Germans. IE, park next to them and say hi.
Izumo, from the wiki
1621633655832.jpeg

showing armor details
Type:Armored cruiser
Displacement:9,423–9,503 t (9,274–9,353 long tons)
Length:132.28 m (434 ft 0 in) (o/a)
Beam:20.94 m (68 ft 8 in)
Draft:7.21–7.26 m (23 ft 8 in–23 ft 10 in)
Installed power:
Propulsion:
Speed:20.75 knots (38.43 km/h; 23.88 mph)
Range:7,000 nmi (13,000 km; 8,100 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph)
Complement:672
Armament:
Armor:
 
Did the Canadians do some intelligence garthering with that unspotted motor launch? How fast will that information be able to get back to Esquimalt and put to use?
Good point, but aren't most of the transmission lines on the west side of Vancouver Island out of commission? Is there another avenue for that info to get relayed back to Esquimalt?
From the Chapter entitled Asian Immigration:
“Lieutenant,” said Lock. “I need your assistance. We must communicate with Esquimalt, to report the situation here. What options do we have in Bamfield, now that the wireless on the Tees here is smashed?”

The militia lieutenant considered. “The Red Line is cut, on land and underwater. The lifesaving telegraph shack in South Bamfield burned down. No wireless equipped vessels are in the harbour. Pachena Wireless Station was bombarded by that Hun that captured us. We know the wireless is out there, the telegraph may be as well. I’m not sure where the next telegraph station is on the lifesaving trail.”

“Five miles east of that, at Klanawa River,” said a passing sailor.

“And too rough a trail for a horse,” said another.

“Sechart Whaling station would be the closest telegraph,” opined the first sailor.

“Or Ucluelet,” said the second.

“The Gordons, the original garrison at Bamfield, sent a boat over to Ucluelet yesterday, and they never returned,” said the Fusilier lieutenant.
“You could send a boat to Sechart Whaling Station,” said the Tees’s captain. He looked at his empty boat deck. “But we have none. We would have to go to Bamfield and get them to send over a fishboat. I, for one, am not sure the Hun are truly gone.”

“A boat travelling west might meet trouble, if the Hun are still lurking,” said Brown, “especially if the boat is lighting its way. And with no moon I would not want to travel the Sound without a light.”

“Someone always wants to be a hero,” said Tees’s captain. “But I agree, it would be prudent to wait until first light.
From the Chapter Entitled Charred Wood:
happening just after 0900 hours, August 22, Victoria
A clerk entered the room and made his way through the milling men over to McBride’s desk.

“A Report just in sir,” the clerk said, “by telegraph from Sechart Whaling Station in Barclay Sound. Both German cruisers and two freighters are sitting in Newcombe Channel right now.”
 
Too bad Nürnberg doesn't have the ship behind her as an ally! Izumo would chose to be someplace else FAST!
SMS_Bremen_Stettin_Moltke_HamptonRoads_1912.jpg


Yes, that would be an entirely different POD. If this photo taken in Newport News in 1912 showed part of the East Asiatic Squadron. Bremen to left, sister ship of Leipzig, Stettin sister ship of Nürnberg at center, and Moltke to right. Downstream consequences, same outcome for Battle of Colonel, opposite outcome Battle of Falkland Islands.
 
Too bad Nürnberg doesn't have the ship behind her as an ally! Izumo would chose to be someplace else FAST!
From the cage masts I am assuming an American ship, though maybe another navy's ship. A battleship or armored cruiser, so at least as big as Izumo.
 
It looks like only the oldest of the USN armored cruisers (New York and Brooklyn) and some pre-dreadnaughts (the Connecticuts) had three funnels. I think all of those US ships were nowhere near the West Coast.
 
The other ships of the Asia fleet (Scharnhorst and Gneisenau) would really make a difference but it seems they will not make an appearance.
 
And YYJ there were some complaints about this being a German wank. I stay to my claim that this is a Canada wank as every single Canadian ITTL has acted gallantry, chivalrous and cool headed. Hardly any panic and militarily some extremely unlikely successes. Most strkingly the 1 in a million shot of the coastal artillery.
 
There Nurnberg finally goes, one cannot deny her as being one of the most successful single raiders in the entirety of naval history. I would imagine her wreck would serve as a major diving attraction for tourists if the Canadian government does have it raised so local citizens can take turns spitting on it :p .

As for what the ship with "WARSHIP MASTS AND THREE FUNNELS", there is a few different possibilities. Unfortunately for the Royal Navy to my knowledge, they do not have any three funneled warships anywhere in a position to intercept the Germans as HMS Newcastle who is rapidly on her way is still a few days out with four funnels. As pointed out Izumo does have three funnels however, I doubt it is a USN warship. Barkley Sound is strictly in Canadian waters and a neutral nation sending a force to attack another nations ship in foreign waters is a bit difficult to imagine.

In regard to Izumo arriving even if she was still technically neutral, I can see her still attacking Leipzig and her merry group of raiders. The Japanese were historically rather uncaring about neutrality when it came to getting their hands on Germans.

"On 23 October at 11.30 p.m., the USCRS Thetis spotted two steam powered launches acting strangely out in the harbour and signalled them to no avail. It lowered a boat and attempted to board one of them, firing a blank round from its 3-lb deck gun, causing the two ships to disappear into the night. The next morning the sun rose to reveal the battleship HIJMS Hizen and the armoured cruiser Asama; with them was the German schooner Aeolus, which the Japanese had caught just outside Honolulu harbour with its cargo of Copra. The Japanese were transferring the German captives to the Loksum in the harbour as well as taking the Copra aboard their vessels. HIJMS Hizen's launches continued to violate American territorial waters, being chased by the Thetis on several occasions. The Americans even had to order Japanese sailors off another German trader, the Hermes, which was overtaken and boarded within the three-mile exclusion zone, even ripping down the German flag. Captain Schmidt protested with the Japanese sailors claiming asylum and hoisted the flag back up as the Thetis came closer, threatening the Japanese with her guns. The Hermes was greeted with cheers from the two German vessels already in port after the Japanese were forced to abandon their attempted capture. HIJMS Hizen's captain claimed in an interview that he intended on waiting for the Geier to come out and would stick to the rules of neutrality rigidly, but every night his vessels would harry shipping within the boundary limits and the US navy sent out a further two launches from Pearl Harbour to aid the Thetis. The actions of the Japanese did nothing to ingratiate them or the Allied cause to the Americans on the island."

My personal guess for the exact ship is HMCHS Prince George once again coming around to confuse people with its silhouette but she may still be busy elsewhere undertaking her duties.
 
I was thinking about this. Izumo could do serious harm to American-Japanese relations in a hurry by engaging while Japan was not at war. This is all in view of the Americans. Of course, the British, not always concerned with international law, will be delighted, and will do everything they can (which is a lot) to put a British spin on things.
 
There Nurnberg finally goes, one cannot deny her as being one of the most successful single raiders in the entirety of naval history. I would imagine her wreck would serve as a major diving attraction for tourists if the Canadian government does have it raised so local citizens can take turns spitting on it :p .

As for what the ship with "WARSHIP MASTS AND THREE FUNNELS", there is a few different possibilities. Unfortunately for the Royal Navy to my knowledge, they do not have any three funneled warships anywhere in a position to intercept the Germans as HMS Newcastle who is rapidly on her way is still a few days out with four funnels. As pointed out Izumo does have three funnels however, I doubt it is a USN warship. Barkley Sound is strictly in Canadian waters and a neutral nation sending a force to attack another nations ship in foreign waters is a bit difficult to imagine.

In regard to Izumo arriving even if she was still technically neutral, I can see her still attacking Leipzig and her merry group of raiders. The Japanese were historically rather uncaring about neutrality when it came to getting their hands on Germans.

"On 23 October at 11.30 p.m., the USCRS Thetis spotted two steam powered launches acting strangely out in the harbour and signalled them to no avail. It lowered a boat and attempted to board one of them, firing a blank round from its 3-lb deck gun, causing the two ships to disappear into the night. The next morning the sun rose to reveal the battleship HIJMS Hizen and the armoured cruiser Asama; with them was the German schooner Aeolus, which the Japanese had caught just outside Honolulu harbour with its cargo of Copra. The Japanese were transferring the German captives to the Loksum in the harbour as well as taking the Copra aboard their vessels. HIJMS Hizen's launches continued to violate American territorial waters, being chased by the Thetis on several occasions. The Americans even had to order Japanese sailors off another German trader, the Hermes, which was overtaken and boarded within the three-mile exclusion zone, even ripping down the German flag. Captain Schmidt protested with the Japanese sailors claiming asylum and hoisted the flag back up as the Thetis came closer, threatening the Japanese with her guns. The Hermes was greeted with cheers from the two German vessels already in port after the Japanese were forced to abandon their attempted capture. HIJMS Hizen's captain claimed in an interview that he intended on waiting for the Geier to come out and would stick to the rules of neutrality rigidly, but every night his vessels would harry shipping within the boundary limits and the US navy sent out a further two launches from Pearl Harbour to aid the Thetis. The actions of the Japanese did nothing to ingratiate them or the Allied cause to the Americans on the island."

My personal guess for the exact ship is HMCHS Prince George once again coming around to confuse people with its silhouette but she may still be busy elsewhere undertaking her duties.
On those nights when the skies are just right, sailors still claim to see the HMCHS Prince George. She is one of a number of merry specters that haunt the Straight of San Juan de Fuca and the neighboring waters. Even being seen by such worthies as the HMS Warspite, the RV Calypso, and the USS Nimitz. (okay, that last bit may be too much. :) )
 
I wonder if the RCN may think about dispatching HMCS Niobe to the west coast ASAP. After all theres currently more German action on that side of Canada then on the Atlantic side? Maybe the RN could also have Craddocks force sail up to BC to protect the Canadian coast? It would be far more effective use of those outdated ships then wasting them in the lopsided catastrophe known as Coronel.
 
I wonder if the RCN may think about dispatching HMCS Niobe to the west coast ASAP. After all theres currently more German action on that side of Canada then on the Atlantic side? Maybe the RN could also have Craddocks force sail up to BC to protect the Canadian coast? It would be far more effective use of those outdated ships then wasting them in the lopsided catastrophe known as Coronel.
There is a near endless list of issues with getting Niobe to sea let alone all the way over to the west coast. Niobe was laid up in Halifax from January 1912 to basically the start of WWI following her beaching in July 1911. Through this period, she was largely allowed to rot where she floated with minimal upkeep by her tiny skeleton crew which was further pillaged before WWI when many of them went to the west coast to go aboard Rainbow. As of August 1st 1914, Niobe's crew consisted of 14 people largely in the engineering department. Captain Robert Corbett from HMS Algerine was put in command of Niobe when himself, 16 other officers and 194 men came from both Algerine and Shearwater on the west coast. 28 more various RCN and reservist officers alongside 360 enlisted men was joined by a single Newfoundland officer and 106 reservists under his command to bring Niobe's total compliment back up to 720 men in mostly fighting shape.

Niobe did not leave Halifax to work up her machinery and crew until September 1st for sea trials and would not be declared available for service until a few days later when she arrived in Newfoundland to take on the rest of her crew. Niobe was out of action from September 17th when the condenser aboard broke down, only leaving Halifax at the first of October to assist in blockade duties against German ships trying to get in or out of the United States. Throughout this period, it was found that her material condition under use at sea was rather poor and after near constant repairs consisting on layers upon layers of duct tape, by July of 1915, her boilers, bulkheads and funnels were badly decayed to the point where Niobe was put into Halifax as a depot ship and never went to sea again.

Niobe is badly needed on the east coast as part of the blockade force but even if she could be sent west, she would not make it in time to be of any use to the Entente in the Pacific. The trip for Niobe non-stop from Halifax to Esquimalt through the Panama Canal (which I'm not even sure is open to belligerents) is 6,300 nautical miles at 10 knots clocking in at just over 26 days. The Strait of Magellan or Cape Horn would be almost 14,000 nautical miles at 10 knots for a total transit time of over 57 days. Keep in mind those numbers do not take into consideration port visits, refueling, breakdowns, etc. Remember that Niobe cannot fuel in the US as it is a neutral.

Niobe in the Pacific sadly doesn't really make sense or work.
 
Thing is, with a three knot advantage and significantly newer machinery, not to mention generally lighter used machinery, Leipzig should have at least a 3 knot advantage over Izumo.

Izumo saw quite a bit of combat and hard use during the Russo-Japanese war, including significant damage both at Usan against Russian Armored cruisers and at Tsushima. Tellingly for this potential engagement the high number of shells she took at Ulsan did little damage. However, the numerous times she pushed her speed through then must have taken a toll on her machinery.

Being honest, I am something of a sucker for 1890s-1905 era ships. I get that Izumo doesn't have the sexy lines that say, Alaska or Iowa would later have, but there is something stout about classic armored cruisers that I just like. This is particularly true for the USS Olympia, though I'm also a fan of the somewhat later 6" CAs that the USN produced.
Niobe going around South America sounds like a recreation of the 2nd pacific squadron. Can we rename her Niochatka in honor of a famous Russian vessel? Maybe coat her in coal dust too, it's magical like fairy dust. I hear Florida man operates German torpedo boats. Do you see torpedo boats?
 
Niobe is badly needed on the east coast as part of the blockade force but even if she could be sent west, she would not make it in time to be of any use to the Entente in the Pacific. The trip for Niobe non-stop from Halifax to Esquimalt through the Panama Canal (which I'm not even sure is open to belligerents) is 6,300 nautical miles at 10 knots clocking in at just over 26 days. The Strait of Magellan or Cape Horn would be almost 14,000 nautical miles at 10 knots for a total transit time of over 57 days. Keep in mind those numbers do not take into consideration port visits, refueling, breakdowns, etc. Remember that Niobe cannot fuel in the US as it is a neutral.
If Niobe could make the trip, would a voyage via the Northwest passage be viable?

Edit: NVM Artic Sea Ice is probably too much to handle.
 
Last edited:
Top