Russo-Japanese War

The Russo-Japanese War was considered by some as “the first great war of the twentieth century” and by others as “World War Zero”. This was the first time in history when two great
imperial powers were able to use their industrial might to obtain land and resources from other Empires. The war began with Japan’s bombardment of Russia’s Chinese warm water port, Port Arthur, in February 1904. The war would not end until the discovery of Russia’s Baltic Fleet at the Battle of Tsushima in May 1905. After several decisive land and naval battles for the Japanese the Russians were forced to evacuate from Chinese Manchuria, cede Port Arthur and the surrounding area, and agree to Japan’s influence over the Korean peninsula. These new, advantageous land grabs would give Japan the footholds it would need off its mainland to pursue its Imperial Dreams.

Russian Business Street

Russia’s citizens were unaware of the
Japanese bombardment they were about to endure.

Restaurant during Japanese Seige

Japan’s attack on Port Arthur in Feb. 1904 damaged numerous buildings. The siege would last on and off for a year.

Japanese Shells at Port Arthur

After taking Russia’s major naval port the Japanese were able to destroy
Russia’s other land holdings nearby with their artillery.

Chinese Print depicting Battle of the Yalu River

The first major land battle of the war was at the Yalu River where Russians tried to stop Japanese advancement into Manchuria.

Sinking of the Battleship Pallada by Japan

The Russo-Japanese War had some of the longest distance naval battles, the longest being 8 miles apart, in history up to that point. Particularly at the Yellow Sea and Port Arthur.

Russian Soldiers at the Battle of Sandepu

The Battle of Subseku and other land conflicts involved Russians holding a
defensive line against the Japanese as they waited for reinforcements arriving on the Trans-Siberian Railway.

Russians passing through the Chinese city of Mukden

The final land battle of the war was also the largest with 250,000 men on both sides. The Battle of Mukden would be a decisive, if not bloody, victory for the
Japanese.

Battle of Tsushima

The last naval battle of the war took place after Japan’s siege of Port Arthur. The battle in the Tsushima Straits ended in the near annihilation of the Russian fleet.

Americans Arriving at Portsmouth Peace Treaty

The Treaty of Portsmouth ended the
Russo-Japanese War in Sept. 1905. It was mediated by Theodore Roosevelt,
resulting in a Nobel Prize for the
American President.

Victorious Japanese at Tiger Tail Harbor

Japan’s victories in the Russo-Japanese War were meant to bring a new sense of pride and nationalism to the Japanese people. Instead riots occurred throughout Japan due to the perceived little land and wealth ceded by Russia.