Author Archives: WW1 Secretariat

About WW1 Secretariat

100 Taita Taveta is a program formed by the County Government of Taita Taveta, to commemorate the First World War Centenary through a range of activities starting from August 2014 to August 2018

Mt Kasigau

An isolated mountain massif in the Taru Desert scrub land to the west of the Buchuma Gate to Tsavo East National Park. There was lightly held British position high up on a ridge as a heliograph signaling post and lightly protected. Scene of two skirmished between the British and Germans forces who wished to use the area as a base for their raids towards Mombasa and the Uganda Railway. Germans held the post for several months from 20th November 1915 until January 1916

Samburu Railway Station

Head Quarters of the Uganda Railway Protection Unit under the command of Field Martial Kitchener’s brother Colonel HEC Kitchener, who was deployed to this outpost after falling out of favour with the British military hierarchy in Nairobi

Tsavo Railway Station

Famous as the Man Eaters of Tsavo Railway Station that is virtually unchanged since it was built in the late 1898. The nearby Patterson’s Tsavo River Railway Bridge was a target that the Germans were continually trying to reach in an effort to blow it up. It was however, too heavily defended

Poachers Look Out

Located in Tsavo West National Park between Kilaguni and Kitani. As the name suggests, Poachers Look Out is an easy drive to the summit with extensive views over the Tsavo River, the plains and Mt Kilimanjaro. The view point was often used as an observation post alternatively by the British and the Germans forces during the First World War

Fort Mzima

Fort Mzima the third of the line of communication forts built on a knoll overlooking a bend in the Tsavo River up stream to the confluence of the springs in Tsavo West National Park. Building began on 21st September 1914 whilst under attack by the Germans. Extensive improvements were continually made by the different units that occupied the site, until abandoned in April 1916. Impressive trench parapets and barbed wire entanglements are still in place. Relatively easy to approach following a game trail 75 meters Continue reading →

Crater Fort

Crater Fort, the second of the line of communication forts built in 1915 inside the crater of an extinct volcanic cinder cone on the Tsavo River at the base of Rhino Valley in Tsavo West National Park. Stiff climb up a well sign posted trail. with great views over the Tsavo River Valley, Mt Kilimanjaro and of the Ngulia Mountain range. Terraced crater interior for the garrison accommodation in tents and built lava rock defenses and revetments and several slit trenches can be seen. As Continue reading →

Kichwa Tembo Fort

Kichwa Tembo Fort is located on a little knoll at the south eastern end of the Ngulia Range within Tsavo West National Park. One of the first Lines of Communication dry stone wall forts built during September 1914 to prevent the Germans having access to the Tsavo River and therefore not allowing them to use the river route to approach their target Patterson’s Tsavo River Railway Bridge and the Uganda Railway. The site is accessible by a rough walk up hill for about 150 meters Continue reading →

Latema Nek/Reata Ridge

The last battle that took place on British colonial soil as the Germans were pulling back in a strategic withdrawal  into German East Africa after withdrawing from Salaita Hill.. This was the first major fight for the South African Forces under General  Smuts. Following the lackluster performance of those in command Smuts removed most of the British commanders and replaced them with his own staff from South Africa

Former Taveta Police Station

Now on its last legs and desperately in need of restoration It was from this building that one of the first shots of the land campaign were fired on the 15th August 1914 signaling the start of the East African Campaign. It became a German Field Hospital and later used by General Smuts as a temporary HQ.