Fragments from a bomb dropped by a Zeppelin L.31

Five metal fragments, the largest labeled "Portion of eaves gutter from 24 Dickson Rd Well Hall Pierced and shattered by shrapnel in zeppelin air raid 24-25 Aug 1916.  Another reads "Piece of bomb dropped from zeppelin through roof of __ Dickson Rd ..."  Dickson Road is in London SE9.

On the night of August 24, 1916, a total of 13 airships took off to attack London.  The British intercepted German radio signals and knew they were coming.  As Douglas Robertson writes in The Zeppelin in Combat:

Mathy followed the Thames straight up to London. For the first time in almost a year the inner defenses were tested, and apparently they were caught napping. The searchlights were much hampered by clouds and mist, which Mathy cleverly utilized as cover during his attack. At 1:30 a.m. he began bombing the south-eastern districts (his report says, “All bombs struck blocks of houses in south-western London and the western part of the City”), and was not found by the searchlights until five minutes later, when 120 rounds were fired at the Zeppelin as she was retreating into a cloud bank.

Though the damage caused by this swift assault was exceeded only by that in Mathy’s record raid of September 8-9, 1915, it is the worst documented of any of the Zeppelin attacks on London. It seems difficult to account for the damage toll, for aside from a hit on a power station in Deptford, it appears that private homes were the chief sufferers from Mathy’s 36 explosive and 8 incendiary bombs. The casualties were few: nine killed and forty wounded." 

Nick Deacon wrote to me that "Dickson Road is just off Well Hall Road in Eltham, London SE9...The London County Council London Fire Brigade made detailed reports of air raid damage and casualties at every property they were called to and this is their report: "The London Fire Brigade were called to Dickson Road at 2.11am on Friday 25 August 1916 and found damage caused by explosive bombs (as opposed to incendiary bombs which were dropped elsewhere along the Zepp's route). Damage to No's 22 to 38 Dickson Rd was confined to "roofs and window glass damaged by breakage".  Similar damage affected No's 31 to 51.  Worse occurred at No 33 - privately owned by J.Horrocks - "house of six rooms and contents severely damaged by explosion" and No's 4 to 20 - houses of six rooms and contents severely damaged by explosion and about 30 x 4 ft of wood fencing damaged by fire".  The only casualties in the road occurred at No's 5 to 27 - "houses of six rooms and contents severely damaged by explosion" where 3 males (aged 23, 24 & 8) and 4 females (aged 22, 20, 17 and 53) were injured, only the 53 year old apparently being taken to hospital.  All the houses, except No 33, were let out in tenements. Generally damage also to the roadway, a gas main was broken and a tree damaged by fire. A very busy night for the Brigade during which 6 firemen received commendations for saving 6 lives at Bostal Hill, Plumstead and 4 firemen received commendations for saving 1 life at South Vale, Blackheath."  Dickson Road is shown present day in a London SE9 map below as well as by aerial photo.