Firing in the direction of Tientsin--The Pei-tsang fight--Under heavy fire--CaptainJellicoe mortally wounded--Four hours' hard fighting--Tientsin hard pressed--Hampered by wounded --Short of ammunition and food--A Chinese feint--The Allies in a trap--The storming of a fort and arsenal--An unsuccessful attempt to open communication with Tientsin--The Chinese gallantly endeavour to recapture their lost position-- CaptainMcCalla--The death of Captain Beyts.
THE anxiety of those in command of the Relief Expedition was not lessened by the fact that for the last two days constant firing had been heard in the direction of Tientsin, particularly early in the morning and in the afternoon.
On June 21, shortly after the Allies had started on the march, the Imperial troops were seen to convey their guns to the village of Pei-tsang, which is intersected by the road to Tientsin. Then, at a quarter-past eight in the morning, a mass of Nieh's cavalry came into action, while the Chinese from Pei-tsang. began to shell the position of the Allies. The enemy had apparently measured the range beforehand, and made very good practice, especially when firing at the junks, which were easy targets. The Chinese fire was the most severe to which the expedition had so far been subjected, and the behaviour of all the men alike, whether British, Russian, Japanese, Italian, French, German or