British Forces

  • Rear Admiral Sir Christopher Cradock
    Position: Formerly C-in-C, North America and West Indies Station, now C-in-C South American Station
  • HMS Good Hope (flagship)(flagship) (sunk)(sunk)
    Commanding officer: Captain P. Francklin
  • HMS Monmouth (sunk)(sunk)
    Commanding officer: Captain F. Brandt
  • HMS Canopus
    Commanding officer: Captain H.S. Grant

Ships on the east coast of South America

Under Rear Admiral Stoddart
  • HMS Caernarvon
  • HMS Caernarvon
  • HMS Defence
  • HMS Cornwall
  • HMS Bristol

Armed merchant cruisers

  • HMS Macedonia
  • HMS Orama
    Notes: As of 14th October 1914

German Forces

East Asiatic Squadron
  • Admiral Maximilian Graf von Spee
    Position: C-in-C East Asiatic Squadron, Tsingstau
  • SMS Scharnhorst (flagship)(flagship)
    Commanding officer: Captain Schultz
  • SMS Gniesenau
    Commanding officer: Captain Maerker
  • SMS Nuremburg
    Commanding officer: Captain von Schonberg
  • SMS Emden
    Commanding officer: Captain von Mueller
    Notes: Detached from the East Asiatic Squadron at Pagan in the Mariannas on 13th August 1914, to go raiding in the Indian Ocean.
  • SMS Leipzig
    Commanding officer: Captain Haun
    Notes: Formerly on station on the West Coast of Mexico, joined von Spee on ~12th October 1914 at Easter Island. SMS Lepzig was to have been relieved by SMS Karlsruhe, Captain Kohler (SMS Karlruhe sank 4th November 1914 in mid-Atlantic from an internal explosion caused by unstable cordite; but this was not known at the Admiralty for another 3 months.)
  • SMS Dresden
    Commanding officer: Captain Ludecke
    Notes: Formerly on station off the River Plate, joined von Spee on ~12th October 1914 at Easter Island.

Supply ships

  • AMC Prinz Eitel Freidrich
  • Baden
  • Santa Isabel


  • Bennett, G., (1962): Colonel and the Falklands, 1962
  • Dittmar F.J., and Colledge, J.J., (1972): British Warships 1914-1919
  • Hoyt, E.P., (1966), Last cruise of the Emden