Like the surf undulating against the shore, the sands of the Sahara ebb and flow with the wind. Alice George watches the English waters, recalling the life she left behind years ago when she roamed the desert with the Tuareg, a tribe of nomadic warriors. Separated by decades and distance, it had been easy to keep these two lives far removed from one another, that is, until circumstances cause her past and present to collide and Alice’s carefully crafted existence to crumble.
Posts Tagged With: World War I
One hundred years ago, during the final days of the First World War, a microscopic menace attacked humanity on a global scale: the Spanish Influenza. The conditions of the war (overcrowding and global troop movements) hastened the rapid spread of this disease. Because of the lack of reliable healthcare and sanitary practices in the public-at-large, this disease quickly escalated into a public health crisis.
It is Week 18 in the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks’ writing challenge. This week’s writing prompt is Where There’s a Will.
The first thing I thought about when I saw this week’s theme was all the William Williams ancestors there are in the family tree. However, as I had already covered some of these William Williams, specifically William Williams, son of Welsh Quaker immigrants, who was born in 1749, in Chester County, Pennsylvania, perhaps I should write about someone else.
What about some famous Williams? Well, I have already written about William of Longespee, William I of Scotland, William III of Aquitaine, and William IX of Aquitaine. Did I really want to feature another well-known William?
No, I would rather highlight an every day Will. Someone who would rarely appear in the pages of history. As I had already written about William Christian, William L. Goss, William Ferguson Taylor, William H. Taylor, James Bernard Williams, Philip Williams, and a slew of other Williams, would there be any left about whom I could write?
What would you give up and how far would you go to make a better life for yourself? Would you pack up what little you had and leave your loved ones and your rural homeland to seek your fortune in the big city? Would you walk 250 miles over mountains and moors while driving a herd of cattle to forge a new destiny? Just what would you do?
1914: Tensions are rising; war is in the air. It is during this uncertain time in history that Lost Roses, written by Martha Hall Kelly, begins. Despite the simmering unrest swirling through Europe, Eliza Ferriday, a New York socialite, travels to St. Petersburg, Russia to visit with her friends, Sofya and Luna Streshnayva, cousins of Tsar Nicholas II. All seems to be going well until, more than 1,500 miles away, something horrible happens, sending shock waves throughout Europe.
On 28 June 1914, in Sarajevo, Bosnia, Archduke Franz Ferdinand—heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire—and his wife Sophie are assassinated by a Serbian nationalist desperate to end Austro-Hungarian rule of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Austria-Hungary is incensed and wants to strike back. However, because Russia is an ally of Serbia, Austria-Hungary appeals to Kaiser Wilhelm II, who on 5 July 1914, pledges Germany’s support. After securing this agreement, Austria-Hungary issues an ultimatum to Serbia. In response, Serbia mobilizes its army and asks Russia for assistance. Then, on 28 July 1914, exactly one month after the Archduke’s murder, Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia, and the tenuous peace between Europe’s countries collapses. Within a week, Belgium, France, Great Britain, Russia, and Serbia are pitted against Austria-Hungary and Germany. World War I has begun.