German Flag Captured at Lome
German flag captured at Lome, Togoland, on 9 August 1914, taken down from the Government House flagstaff by Lt A I MacPherson, a Suffolk Regiment officer serving with the Gold Coast Regiment.
Togoland was a German protectorate in West Africa, established in 1884. Although containing few resources of value to Germany it was strategically vital to the defence of her overseas empire: the powerful radio transmitters at Kamina were the only radio link with Germany’s other African colonies as well as the only means of radio communication between Germany and shipping in the South Atlantic.
Following the declaration of war on 4 August 1914 troops from the British colony of the Gold Coast to the west and the French colony of Dahomey to the east invaded and advanced on the capital Lome on 6 August. There were no German troops stationed in the colony and the only resistance came from the police force of 600 Togolese police officers serving under ten German Sergeants. Resistance collapsed on 8 August and the Allies had gained their first victory of the war.
The flag – the official flag of the Imperial Colonial Office – was removed from the Government offices by Lt Macpherson of the Gold Coast Regiment who in 1935 presented it to the Suffolk Regiment Museum.
Lt Allan Iver Macpherson was born in 1891. He was commissioned into the Suffolk Regiment on 25 march 1911 and promoted Lieutenant on 1 February 1914. On 3 December 1913 he was seconded to the Gold Coast Regiment, part of the West African Frontier Force.