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Abu Na'am Station

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ABU NA'AM

(N25° 13.778: E38° 49.450)

 

This site is of historical importance because it was the first of two attacked by Lawrence of Arabia within Saudi Arabia. It comprises a black basalt blockhouse of the normal two-storeys, beside which is a twin water tower. It also has a small barrack block. The water tower is of particular interest being clad with stone for protection (most have mud brick cladding). An Arab raiding trick was to fire bullets into the water towers to drain them. Close by, abandoned on the ground, is another tank that appears to date from the same period full of bullets holes, though the tank could have been used as a target any time from then until now. Close by is a well likely to date from the time of the railway but it is now the water source for a local community. The date plaque above the door reads 1325AH.

 

The attack mounted by Lawrence was largely successful. He mined the track south of the station while a second mine was placed to the north. Artillery opened fire on the station, hitting a train that was there. The engine was uncoupled and travelled southwards detonating Lawrence’s mine. However, it only took the Turks half an hour to get the engine limping on its way again. Of about three hundred Turkish troops at the station, seventy were killed at the cost of only one injury to Lawrence’s group. If the men that Lawrence had been promised had materialised, he planned to take the station. As it was, he was forced to call off the action and withdraw after the initial victory.

Contribution by
Steve Turpin

Abu Naam Blockhouse

Above: The Front of the Blockhouse.

Below: The side. Notice the plaque above the front door in both pictures.

Abu Naam Blockhouse side

Below: The plaque above the door.

Abu Naam Blockhouse plaque

 

 

Below: The Abu Naam Water Tower.Abu Naam Blockhouse Water Tower

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