Week 1

The arrival of the Martians …

01-Jun 00:01 – Tuesday


126 years ago, humanity faced the greatest threat to its existence with the Martian invasion.


Recreated through the diaries and newspapers of the time, and with the assistance of H.G. Well’s seminal work (‘The War of the Worlds’), ‘The War of the Worlds – In Real Time’ (@1897WotW) will tell the story of what really happened during that crucial month when the Earth stood on the precipice, and civilization teetered on the edge of extinction.


Welcome to HG Wells’ The War of the Worlds in Real Time. A fictionalised docudrama by:  Michael Cnudde, Andrew J. Harvey, Leonie Rogers, Ken Vickery, and H.G. Wells – based on the documents, diaries, and recordings of those involved in the Martian War.



This docudrama is a work of fiction. While ‘real-world’ characters may appear, the nature of the divergent story means any depictions herein are fictionalised and in no way an indication of real events. Above all, characterisations have been developed with the primary aim of telling a compelling story.

01-Jun 00:02 #Acknowledgement

The authors respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands upon which we worked. They were our first storytellers and the creators of culture and we acknowledge their continuing connection to Country. In the spirit of Reconciliation, we pay our respect to them, their cultures, and to elders both past, present, and emerging.


Andrew, Jade, Ken, and Leonie specifically wish to acknowledge the Whadjak Noongar people of SW Western Australia, the Wanaruah of the Upper Hunter Region of New South Wales, and the Wadawurrung and Eastern Maar Peoples of Western Victoria.


Michael, who lives in Toronto, wishes to acknowledge that the city is located on the traditional territory of many nations, including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat peoples. Toronto is covered by Treaty 13 signed with the Mississaugas of the Credit, and the Williams Treaties, signed with multiple Mississaugas and Chippewa bands. Although hundreds of years have passed since the first treaties were signed they are still relevant, and Michael remains grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on this land, and continues to respect its first inhabitants.

01-Jun 00:04 – Tuesday

Today, June 1 1897, we meet the first of the characters through whose eyes and words we will experience the Martian invasion:

  • Antoinette Louise Clark (Toni to her friends) a young medical student – one of the first of her era – who is heavily influenced by Grace Harwood Stewart, one of the first female doctors, and Millicent Fawcett, a noted suffragist
  • Harry Harbord Morant, the maverick South Australia soldier who, as a result of his actions during the war, earned the personal enmity of Field Marshal Wolseley
  • and of course Herbert George Wells, the socialist and author who has done so much to shape our understanding of the war.

We close with Wells observing Mars in the company of Oglivy the astronomer.

01-Jun 04:30 @HGWells

Photo of HG Wells

Herbert George Wells

HG Wells was the author of the seminal work The War of the Worlds in which he documents his experiences during the Martian invasion. Born in Kent, on 21 September 1866, Wells died on 13 August 1946, aged 79, at his home overlooking Regent’s Park, London.


A prolific author he wrote more than 50 novels and dozens of short stories. His non-fiction output included works of social commentary, politics, history, popular science, satire, biography and autobiography.


In addition to his fame as a writer, he was prominent in his lifetime as a forward-looking, even prophetic social critic who devoted his literary talents to the development of a progressive vision on a global scale. A futurist, he wrote a number of utopian works.


Wells rendered his fiction convincing by instilling commonplace detail alongside a single extraordinary assumption per work – dubbed Wells’s Law – leading Joseph Conrad to hail him in 1898 with “O Realist of the Fantastic!”. His most notable science fiction works include The Time Machine (1895), which was his first novel, The Island of Doctor Moreau (1896), and The Invisible Man (1897), before the Martian invasion turned him to chronicling the ‘War’.


Wells’s earliest specialised training was in biology, and his thinking on ethical matters took place in a Darwinian context. He was also an outspoken socialist from a young age, often (but not always) sympathising with pacifist views.

01-Jun 05:00 @HGWells

One of the most famous quotes regarding the Martian invasion was by HG Wells who begins his history of ‘The War of the Worlds’ as follows:


‘No one would have believed, in the last years of the 19th century, that human affairs were being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s. Yet, across the gulf of space, minds immeasurably superior to our own, drew their plans against us”

01-Jun 09:30 @HGWells

Hearing of lights observed on Mars, Ogilvy, the astronomer, invites the author HG Wells to take a turn that night at the telescope. Wells is later to document the following month in his seminal work: “The War of the Worlds”.

01-Jun 10:00 @ToniWantsToVote

01-Jun 10:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Antoinette Louise Clark

The Martian Landing of 1897, or as we now know it, the War of the Worlds, involved many people, including Antionette Louise Clark, whose contemporary was the brother of the renowned HG Wells himself. #WOTW #Martians


Antoinette (Toni to her friends) was a young medical student – one of the first of her era – heavily influenced by Grace Harwood Stewart, one of the first female doctors, and Millicent Fawcett, a noted suffragist #wedemandthevote


She was challenged by Wells’ brother, to keep a diary entirely in telegram style for a month. Despite the challenges, she kept the style throughout the Martian invasion. #memories


Her diary entries have been translated to current ‘text/tweet’ speak, for which telegram style was a forerunner, for ease of reading for the modern reader, since words such as Naloopen, or Empanel, are not in current usage. #technologyforthewin


Unsurprisingly, her twitter handle turns out to be @ToniWantsToVote, and her diary is a treasure trove of insight into the post invasion changes to society. She also sent some of her telegrams – we shall leave you to decide which ones #wedemandthevote #ihavepocketsinmytrousers

01-Jun 10:15 @ToniWantsToVote

The first entry in Toni’s diary for June concerns her excitement at meeting Elizabeth Cadbury the previous night at a meeting of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies.


Met @lizcadbury last night at #NUWSS meeting last night. Totes excited! #WeDemandTheVote! #buyCadburychocolate

01-Jun 10:30 @BreakerMorant

01-Jun 10:30 @BreakerMorant

Harry Harbord Morant


While researching the life of Marie Curie for this project, with the assistance of the Curie Museum in Paris, I found in her personal papers the diary of a fortune fighter called Breaker Morant. Marie Curie had written inside the front cover:


“This rapscallion saved my life during the Martian invasion.”


There were also letters to Morant stored in the diary from the editor of the Australian newspaper The Bulletin. It appears from the letters that these diary notes were being kept for poems and stories to be written for the paper (Morant having received commissions for other work). No evidence exists of publications from these notes, however, Morant’s diary required little editing other than the removal of some the language he has used which reflects the unconscious racism of his time, the replacement of initials with a name when he refers to an individual, and the addition of an occasional footnote to clarify the events he is describing.


Morant emigrated to Australia from England in 1883. A year after his arrival, Morant settled in outback Queensland where he adopted the name, Harry Harbord Morant, claiming to be a member of the British nobility and the estranged son of Admiral Morant. He drifted around Queensland, South Australia, and New South Wales for 15 years, earning a reputation as a boozer, womaniser, bush poet, and expert horseman.


Morant worked various occupations, reportedly trading horses in Charters Towers, and in 1884 working for a newspaper at Hughenden, before finding work as a bookkeeper and storeman at the Esmeralda cattle station. It was here he met Arthur James Vogan, who was researching a book and helped him prepare his “Slave Map of Modern Australia”, which showed the locations of slavery and massacres of the first nation people.


Morant then worked for several years as an itinerant drover and horse-breaker. He also wrote popular bush ballads and became friendly with famed Australian bush poets Henry Lawson, Banjo Paterson, and Will H. Ogilvie.


In 1896, Morant and his droving partner George Brown enlisted with the Second Contingent of the South Australian Mounted Rifles in Adelaide. Brown was Aboriginal-Scot, and avoided the ban on Aboriginals by claiming he was Italian to explain away the colour of his skin.


Morant was invited to visit the summer residence of South Australia’s governor, Lord Tennyson. This meeting must have gone well because he was appointed lance corporal at the end of his training.


At this time, Vogal published his novel ‘Black Police’, which documented the callous slaughter of indigenous Australians by the Queensland Native Police. Pilloried for releasing this book Vogal lost his job writing for a newspaper. Morant convinced his friend to join his brick of four soldiers in Adelaide.


Military records show that both Brown and Vogan were in Morant’s brick when their regiment was selected to participate as part of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations. The regiment embarked for London on 26 January 1897 and arrived in time to experience the Martian invasion.


01-Jun 10:35 @BreakerMorant

Vogan thanked me again for putting him onto this Lark.

01-Jun 17:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Hope @hgwellsbro doesn’t forget the lecture on x-rays tomorrow! He promised to be the subject for the practical portion. #goodundiesessential #roentgenrules

01-Jun 17:30 @ToniWantsToVote

@millifawcett gave me her visiting card. Fangirling right now. #WeDemandTheVote!


01-Jun 18:00 #LatestNews #Balkans

It was not only Toni, most people were concerned with issues closer to home than Mars. The #GrecoTurkishWar had only finished in May, and the attention of many were still focussed on the Balkans, and the possibility of a fresh outbreak of hostilities.


The “Daily Chronicle” for example, led with the following headline on 1 June 1897: “Bulgarian Independence to be Declared


The “Daily Chronicle” Brussels correspondent reporting that “The Independence Belge” attaches some importance to the announcement of a rumour from its Constantinople correspondent that Prince Ferdinand will shortly assume the title: King of Bulgaria.


The report states that the Porte would offer no serious conversion of the principality to a kingdom.

01-Jun 18:30 @BreakerMorant

01-Jun 18:30 @BreakerMorant

Vogan, Brown, and I joined the literary group at White’s Gentleman’s Club.

01-Jun 20:00 @BreakerMorant

I was better received with my reading of HL’s The Grog-an’-Grumble Steeplechase than Vogan was, reading from his novel Black Police but he wasn’t tarred and feathered, which is better than he got in Australia.

01-Jun 21:21 @HGWells

Observing Mars that Tuesday night with Oglivy, Wells later writes: “I saw the little, round planet swimming in space, while invisible to me, drawing nearer every minute came the Thing they were sending us.”

01-Jun 23:59 @HGWells

As Oglivy prepares to close the observatory Wells observes a reddish flash at the edge of the planet Mars, the slightest projection of the outline, just as the chronometer strikes midnight.

02-Jun 00:01 – Wednesday

Following the observation of lights from Mars some people begin to ponder the possibility that Martians are signaling Earth.


In London, Toni, caught up in her studies, her enthusiasm for the suffragists, and the joys of divided skirts, means it is only at the end of the day that she has time to contemplate the idea of life on Mars.

02-Jun 07:00 #LatestNews

Headline – ‘Daily Chronicle’ 2 June 1897:



02-Jun 09:00 @HGWells

When questioned by a reporter from the “Daily Chronicle”, Ogilvy (the well-known astronomer) scoffed at the possibility that the inhabitants of Mars were signalling to us. “The chances against anything man-like on Mars are a million to one,” he is quoted as saying.

02-Jun 12:15 #NewSkills @HGWells

Wells, himself, is presently occupied this day in learning to ride the bicycle, and in writing a series of papers discussing the probable developments of moral ideas as civilization progresses.

02-Jun 13:00 @BreakerMorant

02-Jun 13:00 @BreakerMorant

Mother was pleased to receive Vogan and I to her ‘school’ today.

02-Jun 13:15 @BreakerMorant

Under her wig, mother’s hair is now whiter than her teeth so she is not making as much from men coming to ‘night lessons’. She has taken on two students as apprentices.

02-Jun 14:00 @BreakerMorant

Mother’s girls were partial to my cocked feather.

02-Jun 16:00 @BreakerMorant

Mother introduced me to one of her clients. He is a toff, but Vogan wrangled tickets from him to a talk by Pierre and Marie Curie in Oxford. Unfortunately there’s no tickets available for their London talk.

02-Jun 16:45 @BreakerMorant

Back at our bivouac Vogan goes on and on to Brown about these things from Mars. He thinks the Curies may know what they are. I’m more interested in these things called X-rays, which can see through women’s clothing. Anyway, it should be a laugh.

02-Jun 17:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Can’t believe @hgwellsbro wore THOSE undies today. #facepalm #stripesaresolastyear Even @roentgenxray turned away.

02-Jun 17:30 @ToniWantsToVote

#xrays are amazing! Could see @hgwellsbro femur clear as day! Differential diagnosis will be much easier now we can #seeallthebones!

02-Jun 18:00 @ToniWantsToVote

There is no doubt  medical science is in @roentgenxray’s debt. #science #bones #seeallthebones! #fixthefractures

02-Jun 18:30 @ToniWantsToVote

Big meeting at #NUWSS HQ tomorrow night. @millifawcett will be speaking. Together we can #DemandTheVote! #equality #womenhavevoices

02-Jun 21:00 @ToniWantsToVote

02-Jun 21:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Asked @hgwellsbro  to go out for drinks. @graceharwoodstewart is in town and he said he’d like to meet her.


Also, bought myself some new #dividedskirts from @rationaldresssociety and can’t recommend them enough. #socomfy #ihavepockets

02-Jun 21:05 #RationalDressSociety


The #RationalDressSociety, founded in 1881, listed as its ‘Attributes of Perfect Dress’

  1. Freedom of Movement.
  2. Absence of pressure over any part of the body.
  3. Not more weight than is necessary for warmth, and both weight and warmth evenly distributed.
  4. Grace and beauty combined with comfort and convenience.
  5. Not departing too conspicuously from the ordinary dress of the time.



02-Jun 23:30 @ToniWantsToVote

And finally had time to read today’s Chronicle. Surely the idea of life on Mars is #rubbish. @ogilvyastron certainly thinks so. #milliontoone

03-Jun 00:01 – Thursday

The Martians have landed in Woking and as Oglivy examines the first capsule the British Government begins to react, despatching a number of units to the landing sites.


News of the events at Woking has also begun to penetrate Toni’s world of medicine, activism, and clothing-with-pockets. She’s also begun a friendship with Elizabeth Cadbury, a well known suffragist and philanthropist.


We meet Lt Roger Carver for the first time. Carver is the Lieutenant in charge of HMS Thunder Child’s Marine detachment which on this day is on station just off the Thames Estuary.


Towards the end of the day we witness the appearance of the 1st Martian, quickly followed by deployment of the heat-ray.

03-Jun 00:14 @HGWells

03-Jun 00:14 @HGWells

The police receive a number of reports of an especially bright falling-star, which was seen early in the morning rushing over Winchester eastward, a line of flame, high in the atmosphere. Observers described it as leaving a greenish streak behind it that glowed for some seconds.

03-Jun 04:00 #ThunderChild

03-Jun 04:00 #ThunderChild

HMS Thunder Child

HMS Thunder Child was a Majestic class battleship launched February 30, 1894, and commanded by Captain Allenby.


Although Wells described Thunder Child as a ‘ram’, the sole sole torpedo ram to see service with the Royal Navy from 1881 to 1903 was HMS Polyphemus, and it is possible that Wells’ use of the term ‘torpedo ram’ was merely referring to the ram bows common in Victorian warships of the time.


The Majestic class of 9 pre-dreadnought battleships were built for the Royal Navy in the mid-1890s under the Spencer Programme, named after the First Lord of the Admiralty, John Poyntz Spencer. 9 units were commissioned, including: HMS Majestic, Caesar, Hannibal, Illustrious, Jupiter, Magnificent, Thunder Child, Prince George, and Victorious between 1894 and 1897.


The Majestics introduced a number of significant improvements to British battleship design, including armoured gun shields for the barbette-mounted main battery guns. The ships were armed with a main battery of four BL 12-inch Mark VIII guns, the first large-calibre weapon in the Royal Navy to use smokeless propellant. They were also the first British ships to incorporate Harvey armour.

03-Jun 04:30 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 03 June 1897 04:30 GMT


Off Bournemouth, detached from Channel Squadron with HMS Colossus. Lookout reports bright green falling star with a long tail, passing overhead heading inland bearing 22 degrees, NNE. Ship speed 8 kts. Heading 112 degrees, ESE. Sky clear, seas light, winds calm.

03-Jun 06:00 @HGWells

Up early, Ogilvy, the astronomer is the first to locate the remains of the shooting-star, on the common between Horsell, Ottershaw, and Woking. It is buried in an enormous hole made by its impact with the ground.

03-Jun 06:05 @HGWells #TheCylinder

Speaking off-the-record, Ogilvy, reports the uncovered part has the appearance of a huge cylinder, its outline softened by a thick, scaly, dun-colored incrustation. It has a diameter of about 30 yards. but the heat from its flight through the air forbids closer examination.

03-Jun 06:15 #LatestNews

Henderson, a reporter with The Daily Chronicle who lived in Woking, was reporting regularly by telegram. Despite Henderson’s updates The Chronicle’s front page for 3 June focussed on the discovery of a number of Irish Children who had been found in a house of ill-fame, kept by a woman named Mayreuill, in the Paris’ Rue Cambaceren.

03-Jun 06:16

Ogilvy has just reported that the ashy incrustation covering the meteorite, is falling off the circular edge of the end.

03-Jun 07:22 #LatestNews

The Daily Chronicle receives the following telegram from Henderson


03-Jun 08:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Big day on #fractures today. Great to be able to #seeallthebones, but we still have to know how to #fixthefractures Note to self: must keep #scaphoid intact. Nonunion is #notanoption.

03-Jun 08:30 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro looks a bit under the weather. Hope @graceharwoodstewart pulled up all right this morning. Got to love #craftbeer and #medicalscience talk!

03-Jun 14:25 #LatestNews

The Evening News headline reads: A MESSAGE RECEIVED FROM MARS.

03-Jun 14:37 #LatestNews

The Standard leads with: ‘REMARKABLE STORY FROM WOKING’

03-Jun 16:30 @BreakerMorant

03-Jun 16:30 @BreakerMorant

Attended rehearsals for the QV’s Diamond Jubilee.


The Diamond Jubilee organisers appreciated our devotion to the Queen. It was hard not to smirk.

03-Jun 17:00 @ToniWantsToVote

@rationaldresssociety your divided skirts are amazing! #ilovethepockets #rodeabicycle in them. Also, great to wear during plaster casting workshop.

03-Jun 17:30 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro suggested more #drinkies tonight? Claims one can #study and #drink at the same time! #examsarecomingup.


Had to turn him down! Have @NUWSS meeting tonight. Told him I see him tomorrow morning, bright and sparky for #germtheory lectures. #WeDemandTheVote! #becomeanally Hint, hint!

03-Jun 18:00 @LtCarver

03-Jun 18:00 @LtCarver

Lieutenant Roger Carver

Lt. Roger Carver commanded HMS Thunder Child’s Royal Marine (Light Infantry) detachment during those crucial days in June 1897.


While no individual photograph of Lt. Carver exists, we were able to locate a photograph in “Black and White, November 13th, 1896,” titled the “Portsmouth Division Royal Marine Light Infantry – Winners of the Cup”, with both Lt Carver, and then Colour Sgt Howard in the front row. Lt Carver is on the left, Colour Sgt. Howard on the right. Lt Carver transfered to HMS #ThunderChild 2 months later, where he was joined by Sergeant Howard in March 1897, following the Colour Sergeant’s demotion.

03-Jun 18:01 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver.


I had been called to the bridge by Captain Allenby. Lt. Farmer, our Signals Officer, who had who had spent most of his watch fussing with the new experimental and highly temperamental wireless set that the Admiralty had seen fit to bestow on us, entered the bridge, He clutched a piece of paper like it was Holy Writ. “The falling star landed at Woking.”


“Really, Mr. Farmer,” Captain Allenby chuckled, plainly unimpressed by our new electric age. “…There was word about some loss of life,” added Lt. Farmer hesitantly.  Allenby frowned. He opened his mouth but was cut off by a shout from by the lookout, “Captain, flag hoist from Colossus.”

03-Jun 18:05 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 03 June 1897 18:05 GMT


Received flag hoist from HMS Colossus. Ordered to increase speed to 12 kts and assume position off Thames Estuary and await further orders.  Ship speed increased 12kts. New heading 67 degrees, ENE. Light cloud cover, seas light, winds calm.

03-Jun 19:04 @HGWells

A party of half a dozen men including, Henderson, Ogilvy, and a tall, fair-haired man (possibly Stent, the Astronomer Royal, according to Wells) attend at the Woking pit, and work together to clear the top of the cylinder.

03-Jun 20:10 @HGWells

As the sun sets over the Woking pit Wells watches the working party, led by Ogilvy, pull back to rest.

03-Jun 20:31 @HGWells #Martians

03-Jun 20:31 @HGWells #Martians

20 minutes later some people in the crowd gathered around the pit, which includes Wells, report seeing something alive within the pit’s shadows. #Martians


Wells later reports seeing greyish billowy movements in the pit, and then two luminous disks—like eyes emerge. Then something resembling a little grey snake, about the thickness of a walking-stick, coils up out of the writhing middle, and wriggles in the air towards the crowd.


And now a big greyish, rounded bulk, the size, perhaps, of a bear, rises slowly and painfully out of the cylinder. As it catches the light Wells describes its skin glistening like wet leather.


Two large dark-coloured eyes regard the crowd. There is a mouth under the eyes, the lipless brim of which quivers and pants, and drops saliva. The body heaves and pulsates convulsively. A lank tentacular appendage grips the edge of the cylinder, another sways in the air.


Wells later writes of a strange horror in their appearance. The peculiar V-shaped mouth with its pointed upper lip, the absence of brow ridges or any chin, the incessant quivering of its mouth, the Gorgon groups of tentacles, the tumultuous breathing of its lungs.

03-Jun 21:05 @HGWells

As sunset fades to twilight the local authorities decide that since the Martians are evidently, in spite of their repulsive forms, intelligent creatures, a deputation will approach them with signals to show them, that we, too, are intelligent.

03-Jun 21:10 @HGWells #TheMartians

03-Jun 21:10 @HGWells #TheMartians

Ogilvy and Stent are chosen to lead the deputation. As they approach the pit there is a flash of light, and a quantity of luminous greenish smoke comes out of the pit in three distinct puffs. Slowly a humped shape rises out of the pit, and the ghost of a beam of light flickers out from it.


Flashes of flame follow the light and a bright glare leaps to figure to figure. It is as if some invisible jet impinges upon them and flashes into white flame. And then each man is suddenly turned to fire. And then the beam is turned on the crowd.



03-Jun 21:15

Due to the War no inquest is ever undertaken into what happened so we must rely on Wells’ account. But it appears those who were watching panic and turn into behind to escape. The road, narrow and black between its high banks, acts as a funnel, and they are crushed together.


A desperate struggle occurs, that leaves at least 3 persons (two women and a young boy) crushed and trampled, left to die amid the terror and the darkness. Police reports confirm Wells’ estimate that 40 people were killed, a result of the panic, and the Martian’s heat ray.

03-Jun 21:20 @BreakerMorant

There was a strange light in the sky. News of the strange things at Woking has spread among the boys of the regiment like we were a mob of women.

03-Jun 21:30 @ToniWantsToVote

@millifawcett is so inspiring! One day we WILL have the vote! #equality #WeDemandTheVote!

03-Jun 21:32 @ToniWantsToVote

03-Jun 21:32 @ToniWantsToVote

@lizcadbury gave me chocs! #buycadburychocolate

03-Jun 21:35 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro could be an ally, may need to bribe him with chocolates though. #WeDemandTheVote! #notallmen #wehavechocolate


03-Jun 22:07 @ToniWantsToVote

There was a #reallyloudnoise when I was walking home in my #dividedskirts after the meeting. No-one knew where it came from? #mysteriousnoises #needtogotosleep #stillexcitedfrommeeting


03-Jun 23:00 @HGWells

Wells later reports that witnesses observe a company of soldiers marching through Horsell shortly before midnight, with the intention of creating a cordon along the edge of the common, forming a perimeter around the pit.


A second company is sighted marching through Chobham. When questioned, their officer states they are to deploy on the north side of the common.

03-Jun 23:59 #GovStatement

The Secretary of State for War, the Hon. Henry Charles Keith Petty-Fitzmaurice, 5th Marquess of Lansdowne, KG, GCSI, GCMG, GCIE, PC has just released a statement.


The Sec for War’s statement reads: ‘several officers from the Inkerman barracks were on the common earlier in the day, and one, Major Eden, is now missing. The colonel of the regiment is presently questioning those still at Chobham bridge.’

04-Jun 00:01 – Friday

With the landing of a 2nd Martian craft the army attempts to surround the Woking pit.


In London medicine continues to be at the forefront of Toni’s mind, fuelled by the talk she attends by Marie and Pierre Curie, but on the way home the preceding evening she had seen a strange light in the sky.  As a result she finds herself thinking of the idea of life on Mars. And because she’s friends with the brother of the renowned HG Wells, curiosity begins to stir.


Recalled to their barracks Morant and Vogan have decided to go AWOL to attend the Curie’s talk on Saturday in Oxford.

04-Jun 00:12

Police records show that several witnesses from Woking reported that shortly after midnight they saw a star fall from heaven into the pine-woods to the northwest. It fell with a greenish light, causing a flash of light like summer lightning

04-Jun 03:10

Throughout the night witnesses continue to describe a light-ray, like the beam of a warship’s searchlight, sweeping the common around the pit, often followed by what some people describe as a “Heat-Ray”. Those on the common also report hearing the sound of hammering from the pit.

04-Jun 07:00 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt Roger Carver, Marines, HMS Thunder Child, 04 June 1897 07:00 GMT


Ship’s company has become more tense since yesterday evening. Mr. Farmer’s wireless continues to bring us frightful news of more falling stars and fighting in Essex with the army having been mobilized.


04-Jun 07:10

While ‘The Times’ of 4 June accepts Ogilvy’s view that it would be impossible for the Martians to establish themselves on Earth because of the difference in gravity, with Earth’s being 3 times Mars. We now know Ogilvy failed to account for Earth’s higher oxygen level, and the Martian’s machines.

04-Jun 10:45 #GovStatement

Military authorities issue a statement at this confirming that a squadron of hussars, two Maxims, and four hundred men of the Cardigan regiment have started from Aldershot for Woking.

04-Jun 11:00 #FalseWar

04-Jun 11:00 #FalseWar

Due to the absence of active combat, Friday the 4th has been described by the historian Sir Basil Henry Liddell Hart (better known as Captain B H Liddell Hart – see picture) as the #False War.

04-Jun 14:00 @BreakerMorant

The regiment’s been recalled to base. Only way to see the Curie talk is to go AWOL.

04-Jun 14:30 @BreakerMorant

Brown volunteers to stay behind so he can cover for us again. It should be alright if we get back from Oxford before first bugle. We can’t get train tickets to Oxford, so Vogan booked the stagecoach. The return on the overnight coach will get us back in time.

04-Jun 17:08 @ToniWantsToVote

04-Jun 17:08 @ToniWantsToVote

Great lecture on #germtheory today. @listersantiseptics was there in person! The great man himself spoke on #antisepsis. Can’t believe #London was so #hostile to him initially. #antisepsissaveslives


04-Jun 17:45 @ToniWantsToVote

Saw a strange light in the sky last night. @hgwellsbro doesn’t believe I saw anything. (Despite his brother being from #Woking) #strangelights #mysteriouslights


04-Jun 17:50 @ToniWantsToVote

Could the light be #fromMars? #TheDailyTelegraph continues to run stories about goings in on #Woking @hgwellsbro hasn’t heard anything from his brother? Can you #lendcredence?


04-Jun 18:07 @ToniWantsToVote

@lizcadbury’s chocolates were OMG delish! #buyCadburychocolate #supportthecause


04-Jun 18:10 @ToniWantsToVote

Had to point out to @hgwellsbro that I wasn’t sharing #mychocolates unless he #becomesanally #equality has nothing to do with chocolate sharing


04-Jun 19:00 #Woking

The recently opened Woking Police Station (1887) receives several reports of fires in the pine-woods about the Byfleet Golf Links as the result of the landing of the second Martian craft.

04-Jun 20:00 #Woking

04-Jun 20:00 #Woking

A police liason with the recently arrived military forces recalled turning back the Woking Fire Brigade’s new 3 horse tender, which had responded to requests from the owners of the Byfleet Golf Links who were concerned at the possibility of fire threating their facilities.


The Constable’s actions in turning the five men back undoubtedly saved their lives, and the future of the Woking FC, with whom all 5 men played. The club had only been formed in 1887, and had joined the West Surrey League in 1895–96, winning the title by one point.

04-Jun 23:03 @ToniWantsToVote

04-Jun 23:03 @ToniWantsToVote
Spent the rest of the evening listening to @marieradiumcurie and her husband @pierreradiumcurie #science #womeninscience #sheisamazing


04-Jun 23:55 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 05 June 1897 23:55 GMT


Lookout reports another falling star on a bearing of 315 degrees, NW. Bright green in colour. Captain orders ship’s speed increased to 14 kts. Heading 112 degrees, ENE. Sky clear, seas moderate, winds 12 kts ENE.


05-Jun 00:01 – Saturday

After the Martians use their heat-ray on the crowd watching them, and 40 civilians die in the resulting panic, London slowly awakes to the possible danger on its doorstep.


Toni reads the news headlines, and is horrified to learn that Martians have really landed on Earth. As an educated woman she is reassured by the differing gravity between Earth and Mars. But the first hints of concern creep into her diary.


With disruptions now affecting the railways Morant and Vogan leave for Oxford by stagecoach to hear the Curies’ talk, even as the artillery encircling the first 2 cylinders are destroyed by the Martian’s heat ray.

05-Jun 05:10 @HGWells #Woking

Wells records that sappers were sighted digging in around the Woking Railway Bridge around dawn, and that both the Horsell and Chobham church towers were in the hands of the military authorities.

05-Jun 06:50 #Idiots

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan. “Just received a telegram from the CinC. Apparently the Martians are to be captured rather than killed. !@#$%^&” #idiots

05-Jun 07:00 #TodaysWeather

The Times‘ weather forecast for today is ‘hot and close, with unsettled weather predicted over the coming week.’ This is The Times’ 36rd year of providing weather forecasts, and its prediction for the coming week proves accurate.

05-Jun 07:30 @ToniWantsToVote

Will be #hot today according to Times.

05-Jun 07:45 @BreakerMorant

Newspaper headlines report that Martians have landed on Earth.

05-Jun 08:00 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan. ‘The Martians remain busy in their pit, with the sound of hammering and an almost continuous stream of smoke. As ordered, fresh attempts have been made to signal, but without success.’

05-Jun 08:05 @HGWells

Wells later records that “…the signalling was done by a man in a ditch with a flag on a long pole. The Martians took as much notice of such advances as we should of the lowing of a cow.”

05-Jun 09:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Maybe there really are #martians? @hgwellsbro still hasn’t heard from #Woking?

05-Jun 10:00 @ToniWantsToVote





05-Jun 11:00 @BreakerMorant

05-Jun 11:00 @BreakerMorant

Leave for Oxford by stagecoach to hear the Curie’s talk. Trip took almost 8 hours. The news about the Martians is getting worse.

05-Jun 15:00 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan. ‘Appears we’ve been forgotten! Lawrence’s lot have got the guns and have begun firing on the second cylinder in the hope of destroying the object before it opens.’

05-Jun 17:00 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan. ‘Finally! The artillery’s arrived. First gun’s just reached Chobham. Let’s see the Martians try to ignore this!”

05-Jun 17:55 @HGWells #Woking

Henderson, the Daily Chronicle’s reporter at Woking, joins the artillery to observe it in action, but is killed when the Martian’s heat-ray explodes a nearby caisson which contained the ammunition for one of the cannons emplaced around the pit.

05-Jun 18:00 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro told me of fascinating discussion in #crammersbiology today. Sounds like the #Martians are unlikely to be able to move in our #gravity #wewillbesafe

Will we?

05-Jun 18:04 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan. ‘Guns destroyed. I’ve ordered the infantry to hold. God help us all.’

05-Jun 18:10 @HGWells #Woking

05-Jun 18:10 @HGWells #Woking

Wells observes the tops of the trees about the Oriental College bursting into flames, and the tower of the little church beside it collapsing. The pinnacle of the mosque had vanished, and the roof-line of the college itself looks as if a 100-ton gun had been at work upon it.


The illustration shows the design of the original mosque, intended to have been completed in 1899.

05-Jun 18:24 #Woking

People begin to flee Woking, as the hussars go house to house, persuading people to evacuate.

05-Jun 18:31 @HGWells #Woking

The smoke now extends as far as the Byfleet pine-woods to the east, and to Woking in the west.


And very faint now, but very distinct through the hot, quiet air, Wells can hear the whirr of a machine-gun, and an intermittent cracking of rifles in response to the Martians setting fire to everything within range of their Heat-Ray.

05-Jun 18:40 @ToniWantsToVote

Must put a kit together #justincase – a few medical supplies, more #dividedskirts, and some high energy foods. #chocolateforthewin

05-Jun 20:00 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro is going to a music hall? #Martians have landed in Britain and he’s going dancing?

05-Jun 20:43 @ToniWantsToVote

Just heard that troops are mobilising. Apparently the #Martians are still in their pit, though. #gravity WILL defeat them!

05-Jun 20:50 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro is heading to #Woking to #seetheThings? Is he mad?

06-Jun 00:01 – Sunday

Today, with evacuations beginning the London newspapers begin to take notice, and the Army moves to capture the Martians.


Stuck in Oxford, Morant and Vogan decide to cadge a ride back to London on a troop train, and volunteer to take the Curies with them.


As the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies encourages their members to organise – just in case – Toni finds herself placed in a team with Elizabeth Cadbury, and also Grace Harwood Stewart – who will later become the first woman to become a medical doctor in England. They’re to be based at Queen Anne’s Mansions, where Elizabeth Cadbury owns an apartment (the Mansions are the first true high-rise in London)


Wells has taken his wife to Leatherhead, where his cousins live. And we meet Lieutenant JR Dullanty, Coldstream Guards, 4th Company (Special Operations), even as the 1st tripod emerges.

06-Jun 02:00 @BreakerMorant

The London stagecoaches have been cancelled. Plan to sneak onto a troop train coming from Edinburgh. There’s no way we can get back to the regiment before bugle call though.


Unbelievably, Vogan has taken it on himself to escort the Curies to London. I tell them they won’t be let on a troop train but Marie Curie produced a bottle of French cognac and with that we have no trouble getting them two seats.

06-Jun 07:00 Daily Chronicle

The Daily Chronicle Sat Morning Headline – “MANY MASSACRED BY MARTIANS”.


The Chronicle also prints Henderson’s last telegram. “THE MARTIANS, ALARMED BY THE APPROACH OF A CROWD, KILLED A NUMBER OF PEOPLE WITH A QUICK FIRING GUN STOP” but ends reassuringly: “Formidable as they seem to be, the Martians have not moved from their pit. Indeed they seem incapable of doing so. Probably this is due to the relative strength of the Earth’s gravitational energy.”

06-Jun 08:10 @ToniWantsToVote

#papers are incredibly worrying today. People have been #killed! #Martians have a quick firing gun. But they’re still in their pit #gravityiswinning – I hope?

06-Jun 08:20 @ToniWantsToVote

#papers confirm that more troops have been mobilised. Also now there’s pine-woods burning. If they’re still in the pit, how is this happening? #gravity?

06-Jun 09:00 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro telegraphic communication with #Woking has been disrupted. Probably the #fires.



06-Jun 10:15 @ToniWantsToVote

@NUWSS has put the word out to get our acts together and organise #justincase Very glad I’ve started my emergency kit already. #antisepticssavelives #anasetheticscouldbenecessary

06-Jun 12:00 @BreakerMorant

Back in London, the news is that the Weybridge Artillery did inflict some damage but not enough to stop the Martians.

06-Jun 12:45 @BreakerMorant

No trains going to Dover. We could ride there, but Curies agree it is not safe to travel.

06-Jun 13:00 @BreakerMorant

Brown was waiting for us at the club. We are to be Court-Marshalled for desertion, which in war means executed.

06-Jun 13:20 @BreakerMorant

Rumours are that 4 tripods used poisonous black smoke, which wiped out an artillery placement set to ambush them.

06-Jun 13:30 @ToniWantsToVote

No further word from @hgwellsbro Hope he’s all right!

Why on earth did he head for #Woking?

#gettingworried #Woking #Martians

06-Jun 14:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Many troops moving around #London today. Heard #loudsounds just now. Rumor says trains are stopped for #troops? Was that #artillery I heard? #emergencykit is ready. No word from @hgwellsbro #reallyworried

06-Jun 14:05 @ToniWantsToVote

@NUWSS has called us in to organise assistance for vulnerable. #someonemustorganise #justincase #whereisthegovernment?

06-Jun 14:10 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro are you safe? #desperatetohearfromyounow

06-Jun 15:00






06-Jun 15:01

Number 4 Company, Coldstream Guards was raised by  Lt. Gen. Sir Arthur Wellesley, later 1st Duke of Wellington, in 1808 when Britain was expecting Napoleon to invade. Trained and modelled in a manner to Spanish guerrillas it was administered, and staffed by the Coldstream Guards.

06-Jun 16:00 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan.


“Firing is presently occurring across all of Horsell Common, and we have them on the run. The first party of Martians are now retreating/crawling slowly towards their second cylinder under cover of a metal shield.”

06-Jun 16:50 @#4Coy-COLDM-GDS @LtJRDullanty






06-Jun 16:51 @LtJRDullanty

06-Jun 16:51 @LtJRDullanty

Lieutenant James Robert Dullanty (1870 – 1897)

The youngest son of Sir John Dullanty, whose estate at Rotch Wood abutted the Queen’s estate at Balmoral, James enlisted at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst following three years at Oxford University studying history.


Lieutenant Dullanty received the Sword of Honour on his graduation in 1892 from Sandhurst. The Sword being awarded to the most outstanding graduate of each intake.


With his father’s support he joined the Coldstream Guards, formed in 1650 it was the oldest continuously serving regiment of the British Army. As well as guarding the monarch and undertaking ceremonial duties, its soldiers served as infantry in almost every major campaign fought by the Army.


Lt. Dullanty’s talent as a mimic and musician earned him an immediate commission in the Guards’ 4th Coy, which trained in special operations as well as providing the Regiment’s band.


The only picture known to exist of Lt J R Dullanty: taken by Christina Broom (1863–1939), who after the war made an extensive chronicle of the leaders of the Suffragette movement between 1900 and 1906. For the leaders of the campaign for the enfranchisement of women, photographs that would distance them from the popular press imagery of militancy and disorder proved vital tools.


(originally modelled by Captain-Heneage: Roger-Fenton-Crimean-War-photograph-collection)

06-Jun 16:55 #TilburyFort

06-Jun 16:55 #TilburyFort

At the start of the 18th century, Tilbury Fort was one of the most powerful forts in Britain. However, by 1889, Tilbury Fort’s bastion design had become out-dated. The government considered the defences further down the Thames to be sufficient and Tilbury was therefore not improved. By 1889 Tilbury was largely redundant as a defensive fortification, although it was still in use as a strategic depot.

Tilbury Fort served as a mobilisation centre to support a mobile strike force in the event of an invasion, part of the wider London Defence Scheme, and large storage buildings were accordingly added to the site to store materiel.

06-Jun 16:57 #4Coy-COLDM-GDS




06-Jun 17:00 @ToniWantsToVote

Tried to catch a train to @NUWSS HQ. Total disaster, walked instead. #notrainsrunning #chaos #artillery #troopseverywhere #iwaslate

06-Jun 18:00 @ToniWantsToVote






06-Jun 18:03 @ToniWantsToVote

@NUWSS has organised us into small groups. I’m with @lizcadbury and her #highenergysnacks, and also @graceharwoodstewart




06-Jun 18:04 @ToniWantsToVote

06-Jun 18:04 @ToniWantsToVote

Am feeling #fearful, but also #determined. Meeting @lizcadbury and @graceharwoodstewart at Liz’s flat in #QueenAnnesMansions. Good high point for easy viewing, but large building so hopefully #wewillbesafe and #roomforrefugees

06-Jun 18:05 @ToniWantsToVote

@lizcadbury says there’s plenty of room so @graceharwoodstewart and I can turn it into an #infirmary if required.

06-Jun 19:00 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan.


“The Horse Artillery’s 12th Battery has just arrived and is unlimbering near Horsell in order to command the sand pits.”

06-Jun 19:16 @HGWells #Woking

In reaction to the arrival of the new Battery, the shield the Martians are using rises itself slowly from the ground by means of 3 legs. Wells (who is observing this) later identifies this as the first of the fighting-machines – a ‘tripod’.

06-Jun 19:22 @HGWells #Woking

The 12th Battery doesn’t even get to fire. As the Battery’s limber gunners move to the rear the first of their guns explodes behind them, followed a moment later by their ammunition blowing up.

06-Jun 19:27 #Woking

From the personal diary of Colonel Cardigan.

“I ordered the infantry in to try and rush the pit, but they have been swept out of existence.”

06-Jun 19:28 #Woking

Cardigan, whose handling of his regiment had been pedestrian to say the least, refused to leave the scene of the disaster and was killed shortly after.

06-Jun 19:37 @HGWells #Woking

Three minutes later Wells claims that he “couldn’t see a living thing left upon the common, and every bush and tree upon it that was not already a blackened skeleton was aflame. And still no sign of the hussars!”

06-Jun 19:39 @HGWells #Woking

Wells watches “one of the Martian giants pursue a man. He catches him up in one of its steely tentacles, and knocks his head against the trunk of a pine-tree. And I see a surviver, an artilleryman making a rush for it – thankfully making it over the railway embankment.”

06-Jun 19:40 @ToniWantsToVote

Arrived at #queenannesmansion #Mansions is definitely the right name. Plenty of space, and well stocked with #cadburychocolate of course! On the tenth floor! #canseeallthethings!

06-Jun 19:42 @ToniWantsToVote

Sky has turned the strangest colour. #skyofgold Feels #ominous

06-Jun 19:43 @ToniWantsToVote

Now wondering if I should have stayed or gone. #fear #hope But one day #iwillbeadoctor so I #muststay for those who need help. #determination #iamwithfriends

06-Jun 19:45 @ToniWantsToVote

Much activity at the army/navy auxillary stores. #easytoseefromfloor10  Sounds of #firing #guns #peoplepanicking Should we #goout? Should we #stayin? @graceharwoodstewart counsels waiting for more information. #whereisthegovernment?

06-Jun 20:39 #LatestNews

London newspapers confirm the movement of troops about the common, and continuing fires between Woking and Weybridge. ” also announces the interruption of telegraphic communication with Woking, possibly due to the falling of burning pine-trees across the line.

07-Jun 00:01 – Monday

Today we explore what will later become known as ‘The Longest Day‘ as the Martians, having destroyed those units which had attempted to surround them, begin their move on London. It is today, that 4 Company (Special Operations), Coldstream Guards is deployed, and the first naval engagement of the war occurs.


For Toni, her concerns for @hgwellsbro escalate as refugees begin to appear in London. Her fears for her personal safety begin to conflict with what she sees as her responsibility to help her fellow human beings.


The Curies, unable to return France, are forced to stay with Morant.


And the Martian’s release the black-smoke for the first time with devastating effect.

07-Jun 00:05 #London #RailAffected

Notice POSTED at Waterloo Station – “A breakdown in the London & South Western Railway’s line between Byfleet and Woking has required the L&SWR to run it’s theatre trains via Virginia Water or Guildford, rather than through Woking…


The notice continues: “L&SWR are presently making arrangements to alter the route of the Southampton and Portsmouth Sunday League excursions. Further details will be posted when available.”


07-Jun 00:06 #London

Telegram from Brigadier-General Marvins, Weybridge, to CinC Field Marshal Wolseley.



07-Jun 00:07 @HGWells #Woking

With storm clouds strengthening overhead, the soldiers can see something moving rapidly down the slope of Maybury Hill towards them. A Martian tripod, balanced on 3 elongated legs, higher than many houses. The clattering tumult of its passage mingles with the riot of the thunder.

07-Jun 00:10 @HGWells #Woking

Wells, who observed the tripod’s passing, described it as “incredibly strange, for it was no mere insensate machine driving on its way. Machine it was, with a ringing metallic pace, and long, flexible, glittering tentacles swinging and rattling about its strange body…


“But it picked its path as it strode along, and the hood that surmounted it moved to and fro as a head looking about. Behind the main body was a huge mass of white metal like a gigantic basket, and puffs of green smoke squirted from the joints of its limbs as it swept by…


“And then it was gone, and I heard its exultant deafening howl, drowning the thunder—”Aloo! aloo!”. Another minute it was with its companion, half a mile away stooping over the third of the cylinders they had fired at us from Mars. And then the storm hid them from my sight.”


07-Jun 01:05 #London

Unsigned note prepared for CinC Field Marshal Wolseley:


“All Horshall Common appears on fire. Reports from what remains of the troops remain around the sand pits are of huge black shapes moving busily to and fro within the pits.”


The note was initialled by the CinC at 1:05.

07-Jun 02:10 @HGWells #Woking

Wells, who observes the massacre, later reports that he was told “that a train had been wrecked near the arch at this time, and that a number of black figures could be seen hurrying one after the other across the line against the light of Woking station.”

07-Jun 02:15 @HGWells #Woking

Wells speaks to an artillery man, who refused to give him his name at that time. The artillery man, who was involved in the debacle at Woking claimed the Martian’s simply wiped them out.

07-Jun 03:00 @LtJRDullanty #PersonalDiary

Just my luck, we’re at war and my command has been ordered in the opposite direction to the enemy – Kilvaney gets all the luck.


Train network is a real mess, took us 5 hours to get to Tilbury, arrived 02:00, only to find that no-one had told the Fort we were coming. Took an hour to get both platoons transferred to the Fort.

07-Jun 04:00 @BreakerMorant

I hate Mondays.

07-Jun 06:00 @BreakerMorant

07-Jun 06:00 @BreakerMorant

Refugees have begun to appear in London.

07-Jun 06:07 @HGWells #Woking

Wells is still in the company of the artillery man as the sun finally rises over a scene of utter devastation, and now watches as the artilleryman (who has been directed to report to Brigadier-General Marvins at Weybridge) heads off.

07-Jun 06:45 @HGWells #Woking

Wells, after observing the massacre, now decides to return to London via Leatherhead (where he’d left his wife) and latter recounts meeting a lieutenant and a couple of privates of the 8th Hussars, about half a mile from the Common.

07-Jun 07:00 #LatestNews

07-Jun 07:00 #LatestNews

Both the The Birmingham Illustrated News (BIN), and its older, sister publication The Illustrated London News (ILN), both normally weeklies, brought out a special edition.  Founded by Herbert Ingram, the ILN had first appeared in 1842. the BIN several decades later.


The BIN leads with: “At 7pm last night the Martians came out of their cylinder, and under the armor of metallic shields, completely wrecked Woking station, the adjacent houses, and massacred an entire battalion of the Cardigan Regiment…


“Maxims have been absolutely useless against their armor; the field-guns have been disabled by them. Flying hussars have been galloping into Chertsey. The Martians appear to be moving slowly towards Chertsey or Windsor…


“Great anxiety prevails in West Surrey, and earthworks are being thrown up to check the advance Londonwards.”



07-Jun 07:30 @ToniWantsToVote

Feeling more settled this morning after a decent sleep in #QueenAnnesMansions. Ducked out to get the morning paper. #TheSundaySun reports #Martians have completely wrecked #Woking Station!

07-Jun 07:31 @ToniWantsToVote

@hgwellsbro am now almost beside myself. Where are you?

07-Jun 07:32 @ToniWantsToVote

And #TheSundaySun says #Martians have massacred a whole battalion of the #CardiganRegiment! They have #armour, #heatrays, and #tripods! #fear #heartpoundingagain

07-Jun 08:00 @BreakerMorant

We are at war with the Martians, but Brown and Vogan agree the threat of a court-marshal means it is unsafe for our health to re-join the regiment.

07-Jun 08:05 @BreakerMorant

We are still looking after the Curies. Trains to Dover will not be running anytime soon.

07-Jun 08:10 #LatestNews

Telegram sent to The Times from their correspondent at Byfleet station reveals that the correspondent had spotted more soldiers at this time, but no signs of the Martians. Byfleet is 4 miles from Woking.

07-Jun 08:11 @HGWells #Byfleet

07-Jun 08:11 @HGWells #Byfleet

Wells later reports sighting “6 twelve-pounders set up in a field outside Byfleet at this time, pointing towards Woking. The gunners stood motionless by the guns waiting, almost as though ready for inspection. The ammunition wagons at a business-like distance from the guns.”

07-Jun 08:15 @HGWells #Byfleet

Wells continues towards Weybridge where, just over the bridge, he sees a number of men in white fatigue jackets throwing up a long rampart, with more guns being emplaced behind.

07-Jun 08:29 @HGWells #Byfleet

Byfleet is now a tumult, people packing, and hussars, some of them dismounted, trying to hurry them up. Wells reported seeing “3 or 4 black government wagons, with crosses in white circles, and an old omnibus, being loaded in the village street.”

07-Jun 08:36 @HGWells #Weybridge

Weybridge is also in confusion, and grenadiers in white are warning people to move now or to take refuge in their cellars as soon as the firing begins. Despite the urgency, Wells notes that the soldiers are having the greatest difficulty in making people realize the gravity.

07-Jun 09:00 #RailAffected

07-Jun 09:00 #RailAffected

The normal train schedule has now been abandoned to allow the army to run special trains leading to long queues at all stations.

07-Jun 09:19 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 09:19 GMT


Lt. Farmer reports that the ship’s wireless is not working. He is trying to make repairs but remains doubtful, as he believes the cause may be due to some sort of interference with his signal.  Ship speed 14 kts. Heading 112 degrees, ESE. Sky clear, seas light, winds calm.

07-Jun 10:11 @HGWells #Shepperton

Near Shepperton Lock (near where the Wey and Thames join) people begin forming long queues for the ferry. On the other side of the Thames everything is still quiet, in vivid contrast with the chaos on the Surrey side.

07-Jun 10:15 #London

Telegram from Brigadier-General Marvins, Weybridge, to CinC Field Marshal Wolseley.



07-Jun 10:16 @HGWells #Shepperton

Wells, waiting for the ferry, later reports seeing: “a haziness over the tree-tops and a sudden rush of smoke far away up the river, and forthwith the ground heaves underfoot and a heavy explosion shakes the air, smashing two or three windows in the houses near, and leaving us astonished…”

07-Jun 10:20 @HGWells #Shepperton

Finally Wells sees: “one, two, three, four of the armoured Martians, far away over the little trees, across the flat meadows that stretch towards Chertsey, striding hurriedly towards the river as fast as flying birds…


“And then a fifth. Their armoured bodies glitter in the sun as they sweep swiftly forward upon the guns, growing rapidly larger as they draw nearer. One flourishes a huge case high in the air, and the ghostly, terrible Heat-Ray strikes Chertsey.”


07-Jun 10:25 @HGWells #Shepperton

07-Jun 10:25 @HGWells #Shepperton

Wells, with others, races for the safety of the water, ignored for the moment by the Martians, even as a tripod breaches the far bank, and is fired on by a hidden battery of 6 guns.


Wells, later records that: “the first shell bursts 6 yards above the hood. Simultaneously 2 shells burst in the air near the body as the hood twists round in time to receive, but not in time to dodge, the fourth shell…


“The fourth shell bursts clean in the face of the Thing. The hood bulges, flashes, and whirls off in a dozen tattered fragments of red flesh and glittering metal. A spontaneous cheer arises from those watching…


“A violent explosion shakes the air, and a spout of water, steam, mud, and shattered metal shoots far up into the sky. And now a huge wave, like a muddy tidal bore, but scaldingly hot, sweeps down the river…


“Thick clouds of steam pours off the wreckage, and the machine’s gigantic limbs churn the water and fling mud and froth into the air. The tentacles sway and strike like living arms. Enormous quantities of a ruddy-brown fluid are spurting up in noisy jets out of the machine…


“The air is full of sound, a deafening and confusing conflict of noises—the clangorous din of the Martians, the crash of falling houses, the thud of trees, fences, sheds, flashing into flame, and the crackling and roaring of fire…


“Dense black smoke leaps up to mingle with the steam from the river, even as the Martian’s Heat-Ray passes to and fro over Weybridge its impact marked by flashes of incandescent white, that change immediately to lurid flames…


Around Wells: “houses cave in as they dissolve at the heat ray’s touch, and darted out flames; the trees changed to fire with a roar. It flickers up and down the towing-path, licking off the people trying to run…


The edge of the Heat-Ray sweeps down to the water’s edge not 50 yards from where Wells stands, before arching across the river to Shepperton, and the water in its track rises in a boiling wheal crested with steam, scalding those still in the water. And then quiet.

07-Jun 10:27 @HGWells #WellsDidntLikeHisIllustrator

07-Jun 10:27 @HGWells #WellsDidntLikeHisIllustrator

In 1899, Well’s published the first edition  of  The War of the Worlds via a series of serials in the USA. The American publisher included Goble’s illustrations. In the second and subsequent editions (Book II, Chapter 2)  in the middle of dealing with a planet blasted by alien war, Wells takes some time to give a bitchy critique of the war reporter’s illustrations:


I recall particularly the illustration of one of the first pamphlets to give a consecutive account of the war. The artist had evidently made a hasty study of one of the fighting-machines, and there his knowledge ended. He presented them as tilted, stiff tripods, without either flexibility or subtlety, and with an altogether misleading monotony of effect.


The pamphlet containing these renderings had a considerable vogue, and I mention them here simply to warn the reader against the impression they may have created. They were no more like the Martians I saw in action than a Dutch doll is like a human being. To my mind, the pamphlet would have been much better without them.

07-Jun 11:15 #Weybridge

Telegram from Brigadier-General Marvins, Weybridge, to CinC Field Marshal Wolseley.



07-Jun 12:00 @HGWells #London

Wells, who had observed the destruction of the single Martian, and suffered serious scalding to both hands, is now heading towards London.

07-Jun 12:15 @ToniWantsToVote

#Refugees from further west have begun to appear in #London. @graceharwoodstewart and I have been handing out water and directing them towards @NUWSS stations. Currently on short break to #refuelourselves

07-Jun 13:01 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:01 GMT


Off the coast near Shearness.   Observed black smoke arising from coast.  Captain orders speed slowed to 5 knots and a change of course to investigate.  Heading now NNW Low overcast, winds westerly. 10 mph some chop at sea. Colossus follows astern.

07-Jun 13:22 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:22 GMT


Drawing closer to coast. Now off Sheerness. Can plainly see with aide of binoculars waterfront aflame and populace crowding the wharf into small boats and making for open water. Lookout reports large metallic tower-like structure rising over the docks. Conditions as observed earlier: layer of black low-lying smoke now heavier close to shore.

07-Jun 13:25 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:25 GMT


I raised my glasses and stared wordlessly at the gleaming apparition rising over the town.


It towered above the steeple of the nearby church on three separate but flexible legs, a hooded carapace at its apex. Calmly and deliberately, like a young boy quashing an anthill, it pushed itself into the steeple, sending it clanging to the ground. “What in the hell is that?”


That, Mr. Carver,” said Captain Allenby, focusing his binoculars, “is the enemy. Sound action stations.”

07-Jun 13:26 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:26 GMT


“Open fire.” The deck shook under my feet as our twin twelve-inch guns in our fore and aft turrets flashed and roared.  I watched as the shells exploded around the Martian fighting machine, kicking up plumes off dirt and debris. “Get your shells on target, if you please,” said Allenby, intently watching the shoreline through his glasses from the wing of the bridge.

07-Jun 13:30 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:30 GMT


Captain orders action stations at 13:25 hrs. All guns manned and report ready. Main A and B turrets brought to bear against enemy. Captain orders flag hoist to Colossus: Will engage enemy machine in town. Captain orders open fire.

07-Jun 13:40 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:40 GMT


I looked fore across the bow to where Colossus had taken up position, some 100 yards from us. Our sister ship had swung aimed its main battery ashore and fired on a second Martian fighting machine that appeared in the town. Colossus’ gunners, by chance or design, had straddled the second Martian with their first round, which seemed to get their notice.

07-Jun 13:44 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:44 GMT


“Closer, but not quite,” said the captain, lowering his glasses.


“Look!” shouted Mr. Farmer, pointing.


We turned to watch one of the enemy fighting-machines step out from the town, across the stony beach and wade into the water towards us, as to challenge our position. The small boats that were the harbour scattered in every direction trying to get away. Colossus must’ve seen it too, as we watched it’s the barrels of its main batteries depress further as the turrets swung to get a bearing.


“Hard a port!’  yelled Allenby from the bridge wing. “Now!” He cupped his hands as he rasped into the speaking tube. “All batteries fire.” I felt the Thunder Child lurch suddenly and grabbed a rail with both hands, as the ship struggled to bring the full weight of her broadside to bear on the enemy.

07-Jun 13:45 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:45 GMT


Look out reports HMS Colossus has taken enemy fighting machine under fire.

07-Jun 13:55 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:55 GMT


I watched as the Colossus’s broadside erupt in fire and fury. Four twelve-inch shells arched out and struck the lead enemy fighting-machine, causing its carapace to detonate in a ball of fire. A great cheer went up from the bridge as the tripod reeled as if punched in the face and fell back into the water with a splash.


Now that’s shooting,” smiled Captain Allenby, lowering his glasses.

07-Jun 13:57 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 13:57 GMT


Our exaltation was short-lived. The surviving fighting-machine rose it is full height and from it rose an almost mournful cry of, “Ulla! Ulla!” that boomed out over voices, drowning us out into shocked silence.

07-Jun 14:01 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:01 GMT


Look out reports a second Martian machine standing on the shoreline.

07-Jun 14:02 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:02 GMT


I cursed under my breath as I saw the new fighting-machine on the shoreline. The people left on the nearby pier saw it too; through my glasses I could see them push each other towards the already overcrowded small craft, shoving some hapless individuals into the water, their arms windmilling as they went. The fighting machine extended a long black tube and directed at the masses at the pier.

07-Jun 14:03 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:03 GMT


Look out reports the second Martian machine producing what appears to be smokescreen from a long black tube and projecting towards the people on the pier. Smoke is black, heavy and lays close to the water.


07-Jun 14:04 @LtCarver

07-Jun 14:04 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:04 GMT


I could hear the screams of the people crowded on the pier echo across the water as the black smoke fell on them. They cried in terror, trying to escape, some even jumped into the water. As the smoke covered them, their voices began to choke out.


My mouth hung open.

07-Jun 14:05 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:05 GMT


Look out reports black smoke clearing from the pier. Reports no-one left alive.

07-Jun 14:06 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:06 GMT


I lowered my binoculars. “It murdered them wholesale.”


“No, Carver,” said Mr. Farmer, bitterly. “That would require an acceptance of equality between us. It’s an extermination. That’s what it is. Like a farmer would poison an infestation of vermin.”

07-Jun 14:07 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:07 GMT


All eyes were on the second now Martian now, as it raised a camera-like apparatus with a circular mirror and directed it towards the victorious Colossus. It flashed and stabbed out, knife-like at the beating heart of the battleship. The Colossus erupted in fire and steam as it was sundered from bow to stern by the invisible blade.


07-Jun 14:08 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:08 GMT


HMS Colossus destroyed by enemy action.

07-Jun 14:09 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:09 GMT


“My God in heaven,” Allenby lowered his glasses as he watched the expanding column of smoke and steam arise from the sinking pyre of the Colossus. He turned back and called out, “All batteries fire! Fire as you bear!” The ship rocked as our main batteries engaged the enemy.


The smoke cleared.  To our immense encouragement, we had hit the second fighting-machine, damaging it in its rearmost leg with a glancing blow. It limped away from us, almost painfully pulling its injured leg with the remaining two, towards the safety of its partner, calling out, “Ulla! Ulla!”

07-Jun 14:11 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:11 GMT


Scored hit on enemy fighting-machine, damaging it, with fire from forward turret. We are closing the distance.

07-Jun 14:12 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:12 GMT


We are rapidly closing the range between us and the injured Martian. The captain’s aim had been to destroy it before it could receive aid from its companion advancing from the shoreline.  However, that point was already moot: the Martian had already joined its stricken partner. It extended its long black tube and began to produce the same thick, low-hanging black smoke that had exterminated the hapless townsfolk.


07-Jun 14:13 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:13 GMT


Second fighting-machine producing stream of black smoke.

07-Jun 14:14 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, Royal Marines, HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:14 GMT


For a fleeting instant, I thought the captain mad enough to pierce the black wall of swirling smoke that was drifting towards us with the ship and ram the Martian. But then, I heard him call out from the wing of the bridge, “Hard starboard! All engines full ahead.”


I gripped the railing and exhaled in relief. I heard the clang of the engine telegraph and could feel the ship begin to heel to the right as she began her turn. The smoke would miss us.


07-Jun 14:15 #ThunderChild

From the log of HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:15 GMT


Thunder Child breaks contact with enemy.

07-Jun 14:30 @LtCarver

From the personal log of Lt. Roger Carver, #RoyalMarines HMS Thunder Child, 07 June 1897 14:30 GMT


We were rapidly retreating from the enemy.  There was no putting a brave face on it. I looked at the captain. He stood silently on the bridge looking out to sea, his faced fixed in a frown. Our ship – the Thunder Child – was the pride of the Royal Navy and the Empire. A marvel of the modern age. I looked back at the cloud of black smoke astern us that now smothered the coast. But what could we do against that?

07-Jun 14:35 #London

Frightened refugees from Walton and Weybridge, and all that district, are now pouring along the roads towards London.

07-Jun 14:45 @HGWells #London

Wells, who had been following the Thames from the Northern bank has just found an abandoned punt and decides to use it to travel down the Thames.

07-Jun 15:06 #RailAffected

Notice POSTED at Waterloo Station: “All trains via Woking have been suspended until further notice. Other services may be affected – please ask your porter.”

07-Jun 15:07 #RailAffected

Returning rail passengers at Waterloo Station have also heard guns firing at Hampton Court station, but all had thought it was thunder. One passenger remarking: “what the dickens does it all mean? The Martians can’t get out of their pit, can they?”

07-Jun 15:30 @HGWells #London

Wells, still in his boat, has reached the bridge at Walton, and with his fever and faintness overcoming his fears, disembarks on the Middlesex bank (near Halliford) to rest.

07-Jun 16:05 #LatestNews

In an interview with The Birmingham Illustrated News, an unnamed officer stated: “The Martians understood our command of artillery now and the danger of human proximity, and patrol so relentlessly that no-one ventures within a mile of either cylinder. Now bugger off.”


07-Jun 16:15 #Weybridge

Telegram from Brigadier-General Marvins, Weybridge, to CinC Field Marshal Wolseley.



07-Jun 16:58 #RailAffected

The crowd at Waterloo Station stirs at the news that the line between the South-Eastern and the South-Western stations has been opened to allow carriage-trucks bearing huge guns and carriages crammed with soldiers to be brought up from Woolwich and Chatham to cover Kingston.

07-Jun 16:59 #London

A curious brown scum has been sighted drifting down the Thames in patches. Two people have also reported seeing a floating body.

07-Jun 17:00 @ToniWantsToVote

#London population is beginning to #panic. Totally exhausted from handing out water and providing direction to #fleeingpublic

07-Jun 17:01 @ToniWantsToVote

Can it be as #bad as we have been told? Are the #Martians really coming? Did #gravity #notwin?

07-Jun 18:00 #LatestNews



The Times pg 5: “The Martians have been described as “vast spider-like machines, nearly a hundred feet high, capable of the speed of an express-train, and able to shoot out a beam of intense heat.”

07-Jun 18:05 #LatestNews

The Chronicle’s headlines reads “REPULSE OF MARTIANS”


The Telegraph’s headline reads “MARTIANS THREATEN LONDON”

07-Jun 18:22 #GovStatement

The Secretary of State for War, the Hon. Henry Charles Keith Petty-Fitzmaurice, 5th Marquess of Lansdowne, KG, GCSI, GCMG, GCIE, PC releases a second statement.


The Sec for War’s statement reads: “Guns are now in rapid transit from Windsor, Portsmouth, Aldershot, Woolwich, and the north. Altogether 116 are now in position, chiefly covering London. Never before in England had there been such a rapid concentration of military material…


Statement continues: “No doubt the Martians are strange and terrible in the extreme, but at the outside there could not be more than twenty of them against our millions, with one already being disposed of–perhaps more…


Statement continues: “Any further cylinders that fall, will be immediately destroyed by high explosives, which are being rapidly manufactured and distributed. The public is exhorted to avoid and discourage panic…


Statement continues: “Preparations are in train to fairly warn the public of the approach of danger, and elaborate measures are being taken for the protection of the people in the threatened southwestern suburbs ENDS

07-Jun 18:30 @ToniWantsToVote

@NUWSS has sent word. #Guns are being sent to defend #London. This is #real. 116 guns are in position. #willtherebeenough? #heatray #Martians

07-Jun 19:00 @ToniWantsToVote

@lizcadbury showed us #TheTimes #Martians reported to be 100 feet tall! #spiderlike #heatray #fastasanexpresstrain

07-Jun 19:05 @ToniWantsToVote

Will 116 guns be #enough? #fearfulagain #whydoesmyheartpoundsohard

07-Jun 19:17 @ToniWantsToVote

Further news from @NUWSS HQ. Any further #Martian cylinders will be destroyed by #highexplosives

07-Jun 19:18 @ToniWantsToVote

I am now swinging from #hope to #despair. Must #getmyselftogether #help #iwillbeadoctor one day #determination

07-Jun 19:30 @HGWells #London

07-Jun 19:30 @HGWells #London

In Wells’ report of the war, he notes that: “Fugitives from West Surrey were appearing in London at this time. Their faces haggard, their appearance contrasting conspicuously with the Sabbath-best appearance of the people on the omnibuses.”

07-Jun 20:00 HGWells #London

The noise of heavy firing can now be heard all over the south of London. Despite that, Regent Street and Portland Road were full of their usual Sunday-night promenaders, albeit they talked in groups, and or walked silently as couples along the edge of Regent’s Park.

07-Jun 20:03 @HGWells #Curate

Possibly disturbed by the heavy firing Wells awakes from where he had secreted himself to rest, to find himself in the company of a curate from the church at Weybridge. Wells describes the curate’s eyes as rather large, pale-blue, and blank.

07-Jun 20:04 @HGWells #Curate

According to Wells, the curate believed the Martians servants of God, sent to punish mankind for its sins. Hearing the dull resonance of distant guns and a remote, weird crying they decide to head north. Though having a significant role in Wells’ chronicles, we have been unable to identify the curate’s name due to a lack of records.

07-Jun 20:05 #Weybridge

Telegram from Brigadier-General Marvins, Weybridge, to CinC Field Marshal Wolseley.



07-Jun 20:06 #Weybridge

Telegram from Brigadier-General Marvins, Weybridge, to CinC Field Marshal Wolseley.



07-Jun 20:08 @ToniWantsToVote

Sounds of #gunsfiring How far away are they? And where is @hgwellsbro ? No contact. No #messages. Could he be #injured?


Unable to say #theotherword  Telegraph lines are down. #hewillbeallright

07-Jun 20:10 @HGWells #MartiansMobilize

Wells, who observes the battle, notes that “The Martians instantly rout the Ripley gunners, unseasoned artillery volunteers, followed almost immediately by the destruction of the guns emplaced in Painshill Park, destroyed by the unexpected appearance of a Martian…

07-Jun 20:11 @HGWells #MartiansMobilize

“However, the battery hidden within the pine-wood on St. George’s Hill, fires a volley which brings the closest tripod crashing to the ground with what appears one of its legs smashed…

07-Jun 20:13 @HGWells #MartiansMobilize

“The overthrown Martian sends up a prolonged ululation which attracts the attention of its companions who bring their Heat-Rays to bear on the battery which fired on it, destroying the battery completely…

07-Jun 20:16 @HGWells #MartiansMobilize

“The 3 Martians now appear to take counsel together, after which the overthrown Martian crawls tediously out of his hood, a small brown figure, oddly suggestive from that distance of a speck of blight, and begins to repair the damaged leg…

07-Jun 21:00 @HGWells #MartiansMobilize

The 3 sentinels have now been joined by 4 other Martian tripod, each carrying a thick black tube. A similar tube has been handed to each of the original three. And now the repaired tripod is also pulling itself erect to join the 7 others…


The 8 tripods now distribute themselves at equal distances along a curved line between St. George’s Hill, Weybridge, and the village of Send, southwest of Ripley.


As the 8 tripods began to move, a dozen signal rockets spring out of the hills before them, warning the waiting batteries about Ditton and Esher. At the same time another 4 of their fighting machines, similarly armed with tubes, appear and begin to cross the river.

07-Jun 21:15 @ToniWantsToVote

@NUWSS has sent further word. All possible preparations have been made. #nowwewait

07-Jun 21:18 @HGWells #StillBeforeBattle

As the howling of the Martians ceases they stand motionless in a huge crescent about their cylinders in perfect silence. It is a crescent with 12 miles between its horns. Later Wells writes that “never since the devising of gunpowder has the beginning of a battle been so still.”


Later Wells is to write: “It seems as though the Martians are in solitary possession of the darkling night, lit only as it was by the slender moon, the stars, the after-glow of the daylight, and the ruddy glare from St. George’s Hill and the woods of Painshill…


“But facing them—at Staines, Hounslow, Ditton, Esher, Ockham, the British artillery waits, poised. The Martians have but to advance into the line of fire, and instantly those guns that glitter so darkly in the early night, will explode into a thunderous fury of battle.”


07-Jun 21:21 @HGWells #TheBlackSmoke

07-Jun 21:21 @HGWells #TheBlackSmoke

Finally a sound like the distant concussion of a gun. It ripples along the Martian line. There is no flash, no smoke, simply a loaded detonation – and a large projectile hurtles overhead towards Hounslow, and without smoke or fire a white mist spreads across the country.


But for those watching there is only concern when the artillery fails to responds. There is a distant tumult of shouting but then it ceases, even as the Martians begin to move – eastward, a swift, rolling motion.


Wells notes that: “Everything becomes very still. Far away to the southeast, marking the quiet, I can hear the Martians hooting to one another, and then the air quivers again with the distant thud of their guns. But our own artillery makes no reply.”

07-Jun 21:25 @HGWells #TheBlackSmoke

A fitful cannonade can be heard faraway to the southwest, as the guns (despite the range) are fired before the mist can overwhelm them as well.

07-Jun 22:00 @HGWells #TheBlackSmoke

What Wells had observed was the Martians discharging, by means of the gun-like tube, a huge canister over whatever hill, copse, or other possible cover for guns, which chanced to be in front of them. Some fired only 1, some 2, the one at Ripley discharged no fewer than 5.


These canisters smash on striking the ground—they did not explode—and discharge an enormous cloud of a heavy, inky vapor, that spreads slowly over the surrounding country. The touch of that vapor, the inhaling of its pungent wisps, was death to all that breathed it.


The Black Dust was heavy, heavier than smoke, so that after the first uprush and outflow of its impact it sank down through the air and poured over the ground in a manner rather more liquid than gaseous, abandoning the hills, streaming into the valleys and ditches and water-courses.


The vapor did not diffuse as a true gas would do. It hung together in banks, flowing sluggishly down the slope of the land and driving reluctantly before the wind, and very slowly it combined with the mist and moisture of the air, and sank to the earth in the form of dust.


And where the Black Dust came upon water some chemical action occurred, and the surface would be instantly covered with a powdery scum that sank slowly, making way for more. Inert, one could now drink without hurt the water from which it had been strained.


Once the tumultuous upheaval of its dispersion was over, the black smoke clung so closely to the ground, that, 50 feet up in the air, on the roofs and upper stories of high houses, and on great trees, some managed to escape its poison.

07-Jun 22:46 @HGWells #TheBlackSmoke

Wells and the curate watch the search-lights on Richmond Hill and Kingston Hill going to and fro, and the occasional sound of the siege guns that had been put in position there.

07-Jun 23:00 @HGWells #TheBlackSmoke

Finally Wells observes even the sound of the siege guns shooting intermittently at the Martians, invisible at Hampton and Ditton, stops and the pale beams of the electric lights vanish to replaced by a bright red glow.

21-Jun 07:51 @lizdispengarrett

Picture of Elizabeth Garrett Anderson

Dr. Elizabeth Garrett Anderson  (9 June 1836 – 8 June 1897) was an English physician and suffragist. She was the first woman to qualify in Britain as a physician and surgeon. She was the co-founder of the first hospital staffed by women, the first dean of a British medical school, the first woman in Britain to be elected to a school board. If not for her death during the Martian War it is quite possible that she might have been elected mayor of Aldeburgh, her father had been mayor in 1889 and, as mayor of Aldeburgh she would have been the first female mayor in Britain.