The first half of 1914 was pretty settled. England was friends with everybody. It was friends with the weather. For example, while New York had a blizzard (picture from 7 March), London was quite springy.
The Bitterness of New York: Clearing the Snow-Bound Streets after the great blizzard which swept the Town
While London has been revelling in spring-like weather, Arctic conditions have prevailed in New York. Snowstorms and blizzards have been the order of the day, and although 20,000 men worked day and night to reduce the resultant chaos to order the New York World stated that as a comedy of inefficiency, waste and feebleness nothing could equal the scenes of overcoming the blockade.
We were down with the eighty-four year old Emperor Franz-Joseph of Austria-Hungary.
A Veteran Royal Friend of Britain
The latest portrait of the Austrian Emperor
The visit of the British Fleet to Austrian Waters, a great deal of talk of Anglo-Austrian friendship, and the illness of the Emperor Francis Joseph have brought his Majesty into even unusual prominence of late. The veteran ruler of Austria-Hungary is eighty-four years of age, the oldest monarch in Europe. An English book on the Emperor's House, Mr Steed's The Hapsburg Monarchy, is said to have been confiscated in Austria-Hungary on account of a passage held by the Public Prosecutor to be lèse-majesté.
We just loved those dashing (yet domesticated) young German Princes and Princesses:
The Kaiser's sons and their wives, specially photographed for THE GRAPHIC in Brunswick on the Royal Christening Day.
Left to right: Princess August Wilhelm, Prince Eitel, the Crown Prince, the Crown Princess, Prince August Wilhelm. The Duke of Brunswick's son and heir was christened last week.
We were entranced by the increasingly scrutable Tsar of all the Russias
The Appearance of the Tsar of Russia in Public
The Tsar and his son returning from a review of the Marines at Tsarskoe Selo
The Tsar's crusade against the evils of strong drink has aroused great interest throughout the world. He recently issued a rescript dwelling on the moral and physical havoc brought about by vodka-drinking, and he has abandoned the traditional custom of drinking the health of the troops after reviews and parades.
— a gesture which may backfire on him in another couple of years or so.
We even had ads with microscopes and benevolent German scientists watching over our minty-fresh breath:
How Formamint kills Disease-germs
The background of the above photographs shows the shape and appearance of various disease-germs as seen through the microscope. The discs are reproduced from actual micro-photographs taken by Dr. Piorkowski, the famous bacteriologist. In this experiment, two glass plates, covered with agar jelly, a substance on which germs thrive, were exposed in a railway carriage. One (the right-hand plate) was also treated with saliva from a person who had sucked four Formamint Tablets. All germs on this plate were destroyed, while they grew abundantly on the other plate (the left-hand one), which had not been treated with Formamint. Thus, when you suck Formamint, all disease-germs in your mouth and throat are quickly destroyed.
Then this happens on Sunday June 28th:
The Archduke Ferdinand and his Consort, murdered at Serajevo
The latest Royal victim of the assassin is the Archduke Francis Ferdinand, Heir-Presumptive to the throne of Austria-Hungary, who, with his consort, the Duchess of Hohenberg, was killed by a pistol-shot at Serajevo, the capital of Bosnia, on Sunday morning, after a bomb attempt upon their lives had failed. They were motoring to the hospital to visit the victims of the bomb explosion, when the murderer dashed forward and fired point-blank at the Archduke and the Duchess, who both collapsed, mortally wounded, and died without recovering conscousness. Pictures by Adèle and Hoppé.
Which makes the front cover of The Graphic on Saturday 4th July, 1914