This article includes a first-hand account of the taking of the Taku forts from the Chinese, by an international naval/army task force on 17 June 1900. Robley Browne immediately volunteered for action, and was the only medical officer on the field of battle. His account describes the build-up to the attack on the forts, and the actual landing and assault. His detailed narrative is supported by sketches and photographs.
This attack was the first stage of the relief of Peking, where the European residents were under siege by the Imperial Army of China and the Boxers (Chinese nationalist secret societies). It describes how critical was the role of the Navy in executing this assault on the forts and the subsequent relief of Peking. As a result of his bravery, Robley was promoted, and spent the next three years on the Royal Yacht during the reign of King Edward VII.
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