Wednesday, September 2, 2015

38th Battalion on the spot

A machine-gun post on the Somme Canal - deceptively quiet in 1918. 

 Private William James Bale enlisted on Anzac Day 1917.  Once in England for training he became ill and spent some time in hospital and convalescing.  He did not arrive in France until February 1918.  Intended for the 59th Battalion, he was transferred as soon as he arrived in France to the 38th Battalion.  

Rod Martin outlines the Australians' campaign of 1918 that contributed to the end of the war, and William's part in it.  

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Wally Essay, posted Missing at The Nek

8 Light Horsemen moving out of a rest area, 1915.
The anniversary of the battle at The Nek having just passed, Rod Martin relates the story of Trooper Camillus "Wally" Essay of Kensington.  The group of 8 Light Horsemen in the above photograph may have included Wally, who did not return from The Nek.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Victorian unit war histories


The original link I gave some while ago to the Victorian Veteran's Virtual Museum which included a link to digitised unit war histories has become such a convoluted affair with various changes at the State Library of Victoria, I thought I would repost a more direct link to them.

Not all of the infantry history books have been digitised, some are more recent histories, still subject to copyright, which have had only the covers and list of contents digitised, but still useful for discovering what books are available.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Lieutenant Earl Haddon Simpson Chapman

Portrait of Haddon Chapman in his Essendon Rifles uniform before the war.
Earl Haddon Simpson Chapman, known as Haddon by his family, was a young man showing a lot of promise.  Educated at the local State School, he was a sufficiently good scholar to win white collar job as a clerk and obtain a Commission with the pre-war militia unit, the Essendon Rifles. In the All Australian Memorial Victoria - Australia's Fighting Families,  he was described thus:  "Lieut. Chapman was a keen student, a good cricketer, and was among the first to volunteer."  In his role in the Essendon Rifles he sufficiently impressed his officer, Colonel "Pompey" Elliott, to be offered a Commission as a 2nd Lieut with the new 7th Battalion.   Rod Martin takes up his story, which you can read here.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Commemorating the Battles of Lone Pine and The Nek


Corporal Harry Webb, DCM, a groom of Buckley St, Essendon, died at Lone Pine on 8 August.

The following men from Essendon and Flemington died at Gallipoli during the period 6 to 14 August during the August offensive.  Both the attacks at Lone Pine and The Nek were designed as diversions but ended very badly for Australian troops.  The 8th and 10th Light Horse took the brunt of casualties at The Nek. This list does not include those who died later of wounds in hospitals at Lemnos or Malta.

Kenneth McLennan of Waratah St, Ascot Vale died 6 August
Adrian Charles Bonnefin of Hudson St, Moonee Ponds died 7-14 August
Henry Murtagh of McConnell St, Kensington died 8-9 August
Samuel Arthur Roberts of Hudson St, Moonee Ponds died 7-12 August
Peter Robert Burns of The Parade, Ascot Vale died 8-9 August
Henry Cowell of McPherson St, Essendon died 7 August
Wallace Essay of Henry St, Kensington died 7 August
Gladwyn Garnett of Roseberry St, Ascot Vale died 8 August
Charles Frederick Johnson of Rankins Rd, Kensington died 7 August
Robert Kerr of Brewster St, Essendon died 7 August
William Lang of Union Rd, Ascot Vale died 7 August
Horace Gilchrist Lennox of Bowen St, Moonee Ponds died 7 August
John E Marshall, Balmoral St, Essendon died 7 August
John Eddy Phillips of Norwood Place, Flemington died 8 August
Charles Gordon Wood of Fletcher St, Essendon died 8-9 August
Harry Webb of Buckley St, Essendon died 9 August
Alexander John Robertson of Hutcheson St, Moonee Ponds died 6 August
Stanley Paul Vaughan of Mangalore St, Kensington died 8 August

You can find information about these men at the Empire Called website.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Eric Survives Lone Pine

We met Private Eric Herman a little while ago, but now his grandson has provided the story of Eric's service with the AIF.  Buried before his time in a bomb blast at Lone Pine, Eric's next appointment to 4 Div Headquarters unit kept him a little further away from the front line, but not from the risk of shelling.  See Eric's story  on the Empire Called and I Answered website.




Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Spirits of Gallipoli talk tonight by Kim Phillips

Cape Helles Cemetery, Gallipoli Peninsula.
Hello folks, just a reminder that Kim Phillips will be at the Sam Merrifield Library  tonight at 7.30.  Come and hear some stories of young Australians who were lost at Gallipoli.  Join us for a cuppa afterwards.

Where:  Sam Merrifield Library, 762 Mount Alexander Rd, Moonee Ponds
When:  Wednesday 29 July, 7.30 pm
Cost:  Free
Bookings and enquiries:  lenore10@hotmail.com