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Generally fair tonight and Thursday; gentle northeast to southeast winds. Temperature past 24 hour*? High. 80, 2:05 p.m. today. Low. 67, 6 a.m. today. Full Report on Page Fifteen. About every one in Washing ton who reads at all reads JTi? Star. No. 19.670. WASHINGTON, D. C., WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 5, 1914-EIGHTEEN PAGES. ONE CENT. GREAT LAND BATTLES BETWEEN RIVAL ARMIES OF EUROPE IMPENDING Belgians Stoutly Resist German Advance?Foe Seizes and Bnrns Town of Vise RUSSIANS DRIVE KAISER'S MEN BEFORE THEM ON FRONTIER Invaders Apply Brand to Several Villages?French Forces Victorious Over Teutons?Neutrality of Switzerland and Holland Violated PARIS. August 5.?Armies of European nations now at war1 are nearing great battles, according to the belief generally expressed in government circles today. German forces on Belgian soil are being stoutly resisted. The forces of the kaiser are wiping out all boundaries in their efforts to pursue their carefully laid out plans of aggression against France. French forces are rapidly assembling on the frontier to drive back all of the kaiser's troops which have already crossed onto French soil and to meet the large German armies now moving toward the line. Smaller battles are being' fought between the Russian and German forces along the entire boundary line. The capture of the frontier Belgian town of Vise was effected by German troops after an engagement lasting several hours. It is stated that the victors set fire to the town, killing those of the; population who resisted them. The town of Argenteau is also in flames. One hundred thou sand Germans are reported to be marching on Liege. INVADERS NEARING LIEGE. The Belgian government states in a dispatch that the German troops, continuing their march, were today in the neighborhood of Fleron, near Liege. They were out of range of the forts and evi dently wished to reach the French department of Meuse by follow ing the course of the river Meuse. The entire seventh and tenth German army corps compose the invading force. The German ar tillery bombarded some small forts in their advance. The Belgian minister of war in an official statement said: "The Belgians are successfully combating the German invasion. The Belgian losses are trifling compared with those of the Germans." RUSSIANS FORCE GERMANS BACK. Russian troops have established contact with the enemy along the greater part of the Russo-German frontier in northeastern Prus sia. The Germans are reported to have fallen back and to be burning villages over an enormous stretch of the country which they had in vaded. A Russian aeroplane, carrying a pilot and two Russian officers, was sighted on the Russo-German frontier near Lemberg, an im portant military station of Austria-Hungary, and was fired on by Austrians. The machine crashed to the ground and the two officers were killed. An official announcement today says that seventeen Alsatians while endeavoring to cross into France were captured by the Ger mans and summarily shot. A number of German soldiers on the French side of the frontier were taken prisoners by the French and taken into Belfort. A squadron of the nth French Dragoons stationed in Belfort rendered funeral honors yesterday at Joncherey to a German lieu tenant. the first victim of actual conflict between France and Ger many. Several hundred Alsatians, Swiss and Italians have enlisted here and have demanded to be sent to the advanced outposts. FRENCH FORCES WIN FIGHTS. The French ministry of war today issued a communication stat ing that German cavalry and infantry were crossing the French frontier everywhere in reconnoitering parties. He adds: "A squadron of German dragoons bore down on Villers-la-Mon tagne in the department of Meurthe-et-Moselle. but was repulsed by French riflemen. "A regiment of German cavalry advanced as far as Morfontaine department, but fell back before a body of French infantry. "The French mobilization is proceeding with the greatest order. Most of the reservists already have joined. "An excellent spirit prevails in Alsace." Santos Dumont, the famous aviator, offered his services today to the French government. The one-armed French general, Paul Pau, who fought in the war of 1870, has been placed in command of one of the French armies. It is reported from Montbeliard, in the department of Doubs, that the Germans have violated the neutrality of Switzerland. The Germans also have invaded Dutch territory at Tilburg. SERIOUS RIOTING IN ANTWERP. Serious anti-German rioting occurred at Antwerp today. An an gry mob sacked the German cafes and restaurants and tore the escutcheon from the door of the German consulate. The police being unable to check the disorders, the Belgian military government placed the city under martial law and ordered the expulsion of all German residents. ASSASSIN SEEKS TO SLAY CROWN PRINCE OF GERMANY. l/ONDON. August I,o-<i Wintcrtori ! board tlx train tliat an attempt liail been here yesterd:t\ from (?f?rrnan>. *>n the ii 1?? of the crown prince, and ? brought news of the attempted us.sa.s- a t' k^rain authorizing a search for . ? 1 host? implicated in the affair. - ? ? -' 11,j 1 of t- ? itow 11 "? 1 ::?<??? . I : im?' Allien., second son of the king r~cW"B ,h" '?'"??? foin .r, ne j and queen, a midshipman in the navy, is ??a:d. an official told the passengers on at sea with the fleet. WAR NEWS OF THE DAY HERE AND ABROAD SHOWS EXTREME ACTIVITY EVERYWHERE FOREIGN Reports of a naval engagement oil the Scottish coast were declared untrue. The German cable was cut today between Europe and the Azores. J Preparations of British navy completed, and it was announced government would acquire foreign war ships under construction in Great Britain. King George called for volunteers for the army. German troops are reported to have entered Dutch and Swiss territory. Russian warships have captured a number of Ger man merchant vessels in the Black sea. Russian troops in contact with the German army along the whole Russo-German border, while French and Germans touched on the French frontier. German warships captured in the Mediterranean by the French fleet. French authorities announced that seventeen Al satians were shot by Germans. An embargo was placed by Germany on Russian funds in German banks. DOMESTIC President Wilson tendered offices of United States to warring Europe to end conflict. Belligerents' warships can use Panama canal after August 15. American Red Cross planning to send nurses and medical men to Europe. Twelve thousand reservists in New York await transportation to Europe, most-being without funds. Lusitania makes a dash from New York for Liver pool. La Lorraine sailed for France. Cruiser Tennessee sails tomorrow with gold coin for Americans abroad. Congress votes $2,500,000 to bring American citizens home. Bureau of engraving and printing is running day and night to supply new currency. Call issued today for cotton conference here August 13-14. McAdoo ships $100,000,000 in currency to banks. Wilson signs emergency currency bill amendment au thorizing unlimited issue. EUROPEAN ENVOYS j TO CONFER HERE Secretary Bryan Calls Meeting for All Diplomats Accred ited to the U. S. Secretary Bryan lias called a conference of the diplomatic representatives of all the European powers who are accredited to the United .States. The meeting: will take place at the State Department late this afternoon, and it ; is believed that message* will then be! delivered to the diplomats supplementary j to those of President Wilson, urging an. acceptance of the tender bf the good j officers of the government of the United j States in the European crisis. The Secretary also may take up with J the diplomatic representatives various questions which have come up in con nection with the neutrality of the United States in the conflict of the powers. One question that may come up is the neutrality of the German owned wireless stations at Tuckerton, N. J., and Sayville. L. I. This army gen eral staff Is Investigating this ques tion. Another question may be con cerned with the large bodies of men who have been gathered at various points in the United States by Ger man, French, Servian, Russian and British representatives, for whom transport preparations abroad are being made. Another neutrality proclamation in cluding Great Britain and Germany, not included in yesterday's pronounce ment, was prepared for Issue today. Mobs Destroy Embassy Buildings. The Germany embassy building in St. Petersburg and the Russian embassy building in Berlin have been destroyed by mobs, according to advices to the State Department. One German em ploye was killed in the attack in St. Petersburg, said to have been made by a mob inflamed by a report that the Russian embassy in Berlin had been j attacked. j The State Department does not crcdit the report of an attack on the Russian embassy in Berlin. Its information comes from St. Petersburg in diplomatic dispatches. Colville Barclay, charge d'affaires of the British embassy, today asked that the United States take over British diplomatic interests in Berlin. Secre tary Bryan instructed Ambassador Gerard to do so. Oflicial notice that a state of war exists between Great Brit ain and Germany was communicated by the charge on receipt of a telegram from the British foreign office. English naval reserves will immediately proceed to England without further notice. Six foreign envoys, who have been out of the city during the early part of the summer, are making hurried prepara tions to return at once to Washing ton. it was learned at the various em bassies today. The Japanese ambassa dor, Viscount Chinda, has arrived in the city with his staff, and the ambassa dors of Germany, France,- Austria-Hun gary, Russia and England are reported [ expected at the various embassies j ! shortly. I Considerable anxiety was f^lt ;it the ! Swiss legation yesterday, owing to the fact that Dr. Paul Ritter, envoy from Switzerland, was on board the Kron- , prinzessin Cecelie. The excitement was j dispelled, however, l?y a telegram from j Dr. Ritter announcing he was at Bar I Harbor as a result of the treasure j ! ship having turned back to this coun ; try. He is expected at the legation j ? this afternoon or tomorrow morning. Envoys Cut Vacations Short. The ambassadors who have been spending the summer at various fash ionable summer resorts have cut their vacations short more than a month in order to be in Washington to han dle the diplomatic relations of their countries here during the early stages of the war which is now enveloping all Europe. They will be accompanied by their entire staffs. The English ambassador, Sir Cecil Ar thur Spring-Rice, is in England and it is possible that he will not return for some time. During his absence the embassy is in charge of Colville Bar clay. It has been a foregone conclusion j that the United States would be neu- : tral, and in this connection virtually! only one problem has presented itself i to the Washington government. This' has been furnished by the activities or" the diplomatic and consular agents j <,i-pntinued on Second Page.; WILSON OFFERS EUROPE CHANCE TO MEDIATE President Tenders Good Offices of United States to End War and Arbitrate Causes Leading to It. PRESIDENT'S PEACE PROPOSAL. "As official head of one of the powers signatory to The Hague convention. I feel it to be ray privilege anil ray duly i under article 3 of that convention to say to you in a spirit of ! most earnest friendship that I should welcome an oppor j tunity to act in the interest of European peace cither now or ' any other time that might be thought more suitable, as an , occasion to serve you and all conccrncd in a way that would j i afford me lasting cause for gratitude and happiness. "WOODROXV WILSON." In tendering his good offices to warring Europe today, President Wilson took a step that the majority of his intimate friends believe will establish him high In the opinion of the world when the conflict is ended and gain for him the support of American citizens generally. But the action of the President was not taken without opposition from in fluential quarters within his administra tion. Some of these advisers felt that the President should do nothing at this time, as it was a foregone conclusion that his offers would be promptly rejected,' and possibly not politely so by some of the fighting nations. Secretaries Bryan and Daniels stood out strongly for a tender of good offices now, while the majority of the cabinet either opposed this step or were non-committal. The Bryan-Daniels view coincided with that of the President, who wasted little time, since the cabinet meeting yesterday, in getting ready to make the tender direct to the great ruling heads of Europe. Eyes on Germany. From informal inquiries which Ameri ca n diplomats have been making of their own initiative for several days it appeared probable to officials here that England and France might accept the tender of good offices. An acceptance by Great Britain, it is presumed, would mean similar action by her allies, Rus sia and France. All eyes here are turned on Berlin, where it is believed the decision on mediation really lies. Ambassador Gerard has been conspicuously active since hostilities be gan in his efforts to suggest some way for a pacific settlement, and the general trend of opinion in White House circles was one of optimism. The first step which the United States would take in the event of a general ac ceptance of its proposal would be to sug gest a suspension of hostilities. This would not involve any interruption or de lay in mobilization or measures of prep aration for war. Phases of the political situation in this country actuated some of the President's advisers to warn against United States taking chances on being rebuffed at this time. It is recognized on many sides that there exists a pretty strong feeling throughout the United States as to the great war across the ocean. The President was accused by his opponents of favoring Great Britain in the Panama canal re peal act. which he foreed through Congress, and it was suggested that if he entered the list of peacemakers at this time there might b?' danger of running counter to the great mass of German voters in the United States through the opportunity that would be afforded political enemies again to claim that he was trying to help one side as against the other. Outweighs Political Phase. The President's overwhelming desire to be ready to use his offices to re-es tablish peace, however, outweighed any political considerations, if they were presented to him. His intimate friends held today that by making the tender at this time none of the powers engaged or their sympathizers In this country would be in position fairly to charge hidden motives to him. They hold further that if the President had waited until one side or the other had apparently bettered the other there might have been apparently some ground for a possible accusation of wanting to play favorites. Undoubtedly, according to diplomatists and politicians, the position of President Wilson and the United States when media tion time arrives will be a delicate one. As the leading nation of the world taking a neutral position tlie United States natur ally will be looked to to take the lead , in mediation, and all the nations of the [ western hemisphere will sympathize with the efforts toward that end. The outcome of mediation will leave sore spots, though, and the national and international effects may be far-reaching. It was to avoid the difficulties and dangers that are foreshadowed that some of the President's advisers wished him to let af fairs drift and make no tender, await- j i ing the time when the nations at war, ex hausted with the struggle and horritied at blood, will turn to this country and virtually invite the United States to un dertake a settlement of the differences that caused the struggle. Wilson Gains Friends. From a national viewpoint democrats ; are genuinely confident. The drift of ! everything in the last few weeks, they I assert, has been toward popularizing ; the administration with the voters of the country. The confident prediction ! was made by a high official of the ad I ministration today, that the democrats will have a walk-away in the Novem ber congressioiiH 1 and other elections, i if the- President and the leaders will 1 merely sit. tight, and prevent any com plications "-rowing out of the European war that will offend German-American or other loreign-born citizens who are voters in the United States. That the President did not sit tight in the tender of his offices to bring about peace is disappointing to some of them, but these said today that if the administration took no further steps and held off for solicitation from Eu rope everything would turn out. all right. They have been apprehensive that something would turn up to spoil I the political prospects which they claim are so good for the party. ! The proffer of good offices was for warded by Secretary Bryan to the American embassies in the nations in volved and through them transmitted to W?e governments. It was said at the White House that no intimations had been received that such an offer would be favorably re ceived. President Wilson took the po sition that the European war was so stupendous and that its effect on the entire world was liable to be so last ing that the United States, as one of the few large neutral powers, could not do otherwise than at least offer to be the means for bringing about peace. The proffer of good offices was not sent to the governments of Servia and Montenegro because those countries are not parties to The Hague conven tion. Effect of Offer. i A hope that the President's offer | might he accepted was prevalent ir. J official rircles, because it is not neces sary for any of the warring powers to change the present military status if they accept it. Article seven of The Hague convention provides: "The acceptance of mediation cannot, unless there be an agreement to the contrary, have the effect of interrupt ing, delaying or hindering mobilization or other measures or preparations for war. "If it takes place after the commence ment of hostilities the military opera tions in progress are not interrupted in the absence of an agreement to the contrary." John Barrett, director of the Pan American Union, who talked with President Wilson today, thought that all South America would be glad to co-operate with President Wilson for peace. South America will be badly hurt by the war unless the United States can get ships to supply the countries there with the things they have been getting from Germany and other European countries, so Mr. Bar rett told the President, and he urged that the administration's plans to se cure larger transportation be put to work as fast as possible. i Wot only, said Mr. Barrett, is tht | (.Continued ot^Second Page.) HEAVY GUNS HEARD OFF MAINE COAST Firing This Morning Reported by Keeper of Ob servatory. PORTLAND. Me.. August 5.?The firing of heavy guns off the Maine coast was heard early today. Eight or ten shots within two minutes were heard shortly before 7 o'clock by the keeper of Port land, -observatory. * The sound seemed to come from a point twenty-five or thirty miles south-south east of Portland and probably in the vi cinity of Scguin Island. The reported firing was not heard by the lifesavers at cither Cape Elizabeth or Popham Beach stations. At Popham Beach, which is near Seguin island, the lifesavers were certain they would have heard the puns if there had been a naval engagement off Seguin. Reports From All Sources. Xo information was available at Bath or Boothbay harbor, but in this city the reports continued to come in from * all sources that there had been heavy tir ing. One of the newspaper offices re : ceived at least 2<X> inquiries about it dur ing the early forenoon. Not Sea Fig-ht, Says Officers. PORTSMOUTH. N. H., August 3.-The heavy firing off the Maine coast, reported from Portland, today, could not have j been caused by a sea fight between for eign warships, it was stated by officers! at the navy yard here. The officers said they were absolutely certain that no for eign naval vessels were in the vicinity. Foreign Warships in 17. S. Waters. NEW YORK, August T?.?Eight crulscrs ?three German, three British and two French?are hovering somewhere off this coast. For days incoming steamships have reported news of fragmentary wire less indicating that these vessels were ! in American waters, but no skipper was able to fix their position. The. firing heard off the. coast of Maine today may have marked the first en gagement between either the German and English or the German and French ships. The British cruisers known to be in American waters are the Berwick, Essex and. Lancaster. The German cruisers are the Dresden. Strassburg and Karlshrue. The French cruisers are the Conde and Descartes. I/iners Have Escaped. These vessels have been primarily con cerned of late In attempts to intercept merchant vessels of the enemy, and sev eral big liners, notably the Kronprinzes sin Cecilie, which put into Bar Ifarbor, Me., yesterday after abandoning her trip to Europe, have had narrow escapes. Capt. Polack of the Cecilie believed that at one time she was in imminent dan ger of capture by one of the French vessels. The White Star liner Olympic managed to creep safely into New York harbor today, as did the North German Lloyd liner Kaiser Wilhelm II. All have been running with only masthead lights burn ing. The Lu?iitania of the <'unarfl line, a British Ixrat, slipped out of the harbor after midnight similarly darkened, hop ing to be convoyed by some of the Brit ish cruisers as far as Newfoundland, and from there to be convoyed by some other British ship until the other side was reached. The French steamer \enezia. in port today from Marseilles. Naples and Palermo, reported that yesterday she overheard both German and British cruisers talking with the wireless sta tion at Sayville. L. I. The text text of the messages was not obtainable. The Venezie steamed ten miles south of her usual course in order to avoid capture by an German warships. Her operator was warned not to send any wireless messages. The Uranium line steamer I ranium ar rived today from Rotterdam, via Halifax. EMBARGO ON RUSSIAN FUNDS. Germany Regards Bank Balances as Belonging to Hostile Nation. BERLIN, August 5.?An embargo today was laid on Russian balances at the great banks in Germany. These funds are considered by Ger many aj property belonging to ? hostile force. BRITAIN'S WAR DECREE BRINGS FIVE POWERS INTO GREAT CONFLICT Germany Rejects Firm Demand That the Neutrality of Bel gium Be Maintained. ENGLAND'S MILITARY MOVES . ARE SHROUDED IN SECRECY Seizes Kaiser's Steamers as Prizes of War?Volunteers Requested for Army?Arranges for Hospitals on North Sea LONDON, August 5. ? Although five of the great European powers?Austria. England, France, Germany and Russia?arc at war and millions of men on land and sea are under arms and ready to strike, developments of prime importance were few today. Great Britain's declaration of war on Germany and the kaiser's declaration against Great Britain were issued last night. Premier Asquith today announced that the British government would ask for another credit of $500,000,000 tomorrow. It was offi cially stated that Viscount Morley and John Burns had resigned from the cabinet. The momentous war decision of the British government, for which the whole world has been waiting, came before the expiration of the time limit set by Great Britain in her ultimatum to Germany demanding a satisfactory reply on the subject of Belgian neutrality. Germany's reply was the summary rejection of the request that ; Belgian neutrality should be respected. The British ambassador at Berlin thereupon received his pass | ports, and the British government notified Germany that a state of J war existed between the two countries. FOREIGN OFFICE STATEMENT. The British foreign office has issued the following statement: "Owing to the summary rejection by the German government 1 of the request made by his Britannic majesty's government that the i neutrality of Belgium should be respected, his majesty's ambassador 1 at Berli nhas received his passports, and his majesty's government has declared to the German government that a state of war exists between Great Britain and Germany from 11 o'clock p.m., August 4." Italy has declared her neutrality, but is mobilizing. Belgium, Holland and Switzerland have mobilized. The German demand that the Belgian government should permit the free passage of German troops through Belgium was answered by hasty preparations to re sist such an advance across Belgian territory. Sweden has made no answer to inquiries from Russia and Ger | many regarding her attitude, but is preparing to defend her neu trality. Japan is making ready to live up to her alliance with Great Britain in case of certain eventualities. Spain is reported to be pre paring a proclamation of neutrality. Austro-Hungary for the moment has retired fi'om her campaign against Servia for the purpose of holding back Russia, and Servia has mobilized with the reported intention of invading Bosnia. GERMAN^ PRACTICALLY ISOLATED. The cutting of the German telegraph and telephone connec 1 tions and the severance of the German transatlantic cable virtually cut Germany off from communication with other countries. Reports from France. Belgum, Holland and Russia, however, showed that Germany's armies were steadily moving forward east and west, and that her advanced posts were in contact with the opposing Rus sian and French armies. In England preparations today were rapidly completed for naval activities after the declaration of war last night, but the authorities would not permit any leakage of news as to military or naval move ments. Several German steamships in British waters, including the Bel gia, with seventy-three German reservists and a quantity of food stuffs on board, were declared prizes of war. The Maria Leonhardt in the Thames suffered a similar fate. The British government today commandeered the horses be longing to express companies and big department stores, thus caus ing almost a suspension of business. On the coast of the North sea, where it had been erroneously re ported that a naval battle was in progress last night, the British gov ernment has taken over all schools and other public buildings for conversfon into hospitals in readiness to receive the wounded men after the expected important naval encounter between the German and British fleets. VOLUNTEERS ARE CALLED FOR. Volunteers were requested for the British army, and this was taken as an indication that an expeditionary force was to be sent out, but no authentic information on this point was obtainable. In France, the minister of war declared the mobilization to have proceeded satisfactorily and everything to be in readiness, with Gen. Joffre, commander-in-chief, at the frontier. As the Black sea has been tightly closed by Turkey's shutting the Dardanelles and Bosphorus, in order to maintain her neutrality, the Russian fleet there has had no difficulty in making captive many German and Austrian vessels. Austria and Servia appear to have stopped their activities, or, at least, to have put a strict censorship on the news of any important events, as no dispatches of importance reached the British capital from those two countries. Detectives, during a raid on houses occupied by Germans in London, in one place discovered a large number of bombs and rifles. Several arrests were mad^, _ _ .