While searching through the archives of the Royal British Navy I made a Spectacular discovery. I had uncovered the long forgotten field reports for a prototype war machine developed by the Yorkshire Iron Works.
Apparently the British navy was concerned with the widespread use of railways and motorcars to transport goods and military material. The admiralty feared that with a lessening importance in naval commerce the British navy’s role in future conflicts would be reduced so they decided to develop a land ship! I found no plans for this war ship but there was a single rendition of the great machine quelling a rebellion in one of Britain’s Far East colonies. One can see its massive arms smashing through the walls of the local stronghold; the rebelling forces cringing before its might. Designed in the tradition of great British warships, the captain and officers rode high atop the vehicle, directing the combat from ornately decorated balconies befitting their status. Lower down the machine was built of simple riveted iron armor. Huge pipes twisted together to harness the massive steam pressures generated by the monstrous boilers that moved the great machine. The crew in these lower levels was not as lucky as the officers above. Here they either shoveled coal into the great furnaces or manned the gigantic long-range cannons. It must have been a fearsome sight on the battlefield.
Amazingly enough it was politics, which sealed the fate of this engineering marvel. The Royal Mounted Cavalry refused to accept a machine into their ranks. Documents show that they felt man and horse had always controlled land battles and a huge, loud, lumbering monstrosity had no place on the modern field of battle. As a result the project was closed. The only prototype was dismantled while all plans and records of the endeavor were archived so as not to attract criticism.
I can only imagine how history might today be different had this great work not been dismissed. We have only one spectacular image with which to imagine what if was like to stand before this massive machine of war.