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Centenary of The Great War

Extracts from The Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate for 24-30 April,1916.
Nanjing Night Net

INSPECTION: Bristol fighter of No1 Squadron Australian Flying Corps is given a once over by curious Australian troops. Photo: The Digger’s View. WW1 in Colour by Juan Mahony. For further information visit 梧桐夜网thediggersview南京夜网419论坛

AUSTRALIAN LIGHT HORSEDetails of the skirmish at Jiffjaffa, 50 miles from Suez, show that the enemy at Jiffjaffa were reported to be boring for water. A detachment of the Australian Light Horse, with some of the Camel Corps and Camel Transport, decided to disturb the preparations. An aviator reported that he could not see any of the enemy, but the Turks invariably hide on the appearance of an aeroplane.The Australians marched by night to within three miles of the position, arrived at dawn and arranged for an attack on three sides. While the attack was developing, the enemy could be seen making from the outposts to the trenches near the well works. A force of Australians galloped a mile and cut them off, compelling them to surrender.

In addition to destroying the boring plant, the troops smashed a concrete foundation for an anti-aircraft gun, and thoroughly demolished the enemy’s position, on which they had set much store.The Light Horse performed a brilliant piece of work. They marched 100 miles in three and a half days, over alternately soft sand and heavy, stony ground. No man had more than six hours’ sleep, and they marched 46 miles on the day of the fighting. Thirty of the Light Horsemen acted as camel transport drivers.An Austrian officer, taken prisoner, on arriving in camp was so astonished at seeing so many thousands of stalwart men in shorts that he imagined he was being taken to an athletic carnival. He was astonished to learn that these were a sample of the 200,000 troops that Australia is contributing to the Empire’s army.

SURF CLUB CARNIVALThe programme for the Combined Surf Club’s Carnival on the Newcastle beach last Monday included a parade, rescue and resuscitation competition, alarm reel races, surf relay races, and exhibitions of surf shooting. The beach events were varied, and included tug-of-war, high jump, pillow fight, relay race, wheelbarrow race, etc. The promoters secured the services of Miss Maude Butler as collector. Miss Butler, who appeared in uniform, will be remembered as the young lady who enlisted, and was not detected until about to sail in the transport. The band of the 35th Battalion rendered a varied programme of music. The first event was at 2.30, and as a result of the carnival the funds of the battalion benefitted considerably.

ANZAC DAYNewcastle yesterday paid impressive tribute to the memory of the Anzac landing, and the Australians and New Zealanders who fell in that historic fight, and on Gallipoli. From early morning crowds thronged into the city from the suburbs and from the adjacent centres.

Business was practically suspended during the forenoon, for major attention was devoted to the observances arranged by the committee, headed by the Mayor, and the Returned Soldiers’ Association. But though crowds thronged the city streets, there was no appearance of carnival, rather was there an appropriate air of quiet reverence, though the tinge of pride in the achievements of the Australians and New Zealanders was not absent. The services held in churches of all denominations after the military procession were very largely attended. A great many of the shops and other business places, as well as vehicles, were draped in black and purple, and there was also a free display of bunting, all flying at half-mast, and in which the public offices and the ships in port participated.

The procession was formed up at the junction of Porcher-street and Hunter-street West, and proceeding through the city, was composed of the Naval Band, Naval Contingent, with gun, Returned Soldiers, Veterans, Naval Reserves, 35th Battalion with band, 36th Battalion and band, 16th Infantry Band, and Military Cadets. It was a lengthy procession, and the marching of the sailors and soldiers excited admiration. The returned soldiers were greeted with lusty cheering which was redoubled in honour of a number not sufficiently recovered to be able to walk, and a couple of whom were blind, who were conveyed in motor cars. The two battalions – the 35th and 36th – in training at Broadmeadow were also greeted with encouraging cheers. All the various units of both battalions were in the parade. As the procession passed the Gardner memorial to fallen soldiers in front of the post office – (beside which were Alderman M. J. Moroney, Mayor of Newcastle, Commander Frank Gardner, the donor, senior military officers, and relatives of deceased soldiers) – was impressively saluted. As the procession left Hunter-street and proceeded up Watt-street, contingents of men fell out, and were marched to their respective churches, whilst the remainder proceeded to the Cathedral.

After the church services the procession was reformed in Hunter-street, and assembling in the neighbourhood of the Gardner memorial awaited the striking of midday. At that hour a gun was fired from Fort Scratchley, and immediately the band of the 36th Battalion played the National Anthem, all traffic was suspended, and 60 seconds silence was observed.

35TH AND 36TH BATTALIONSMr. D. Watkins, M.H.R., proceeded to Sydney on Tuesday night to make another effort to have the embarkation of the 35th Battalion, and if possible the 36th, to take place at Newcastle. For some days Mr. Watkins, Mr. Charlton, Ms.H.R., and Senator Watson had been in communication with Melbourne to bring about the embarkation at Newcastle, but without success. Mr. Watkins returned to Newcastle from Sydney and was not able to report any success. He saw Brigadier-General Ramaciotti, the State Commandant, and also the transport officer. The latter assured Mr. Watkins that the vessel by which the 35th Battalion will leave will draw when loaded 28ft to 29ft of water. It would, therefore not be possible for the men to embark at Newcastle. The transport officer explained that when once the men were on board quick despatch was essential, and there could be no such thing as waiting for high tide. Shipping was so scarce that every hour must be utilised.

ANZAC DAY IN LONDONAt the Anzac Day luncheon held at the Hotel Cecil in London, General Birdwood, on rising to speak, was greeted with an ovation.The General said: “I am glad to have been associated with Australians for twenty months. Although I am not Australian-born, I claim the privilege of being just as good – namely, an Anzac soldier. (Cheers.) I hope to command you for the rest of the war. The world has learned of the Australian and New Zealand achievements at the landing, at Lone Pine, at Hill 60, and at the evacuation. The only complaints have been from the men who were not included in the foremost ranks.”He concluded by emphasising the importance of training and discipline. The task, he said, was not yet finished.

Enlistments for the weekThomas Ridley Bowman, Newcastle; Raphael David Alexander, Morpeth; William Phillip Allan, Black Hill, Minmi; Thomas Roy Bates, Muswellbrook; George Arthur Blanch, Karuah; Herbert Bradley, Redhead; Robert Douglas Breese, Shannon Vale; Alan Edwin Brewer, Stewarts Brook; Joseph Cox Brittle, Greta; Thomas Canavan, Telarah; Arthur Guy Chenery, Waratah; George Thomas Clark, Kurri Kurri; Alfred Reginald Clarke, West Wallsend; John Croydon Cohen, Mayfield; Frank Harrington Collison, Moonan Flat; William Beggs Connell, Weston; Henry Cranmer, Newcastle; John Henry Croft, Merewether; John William Cummings, Pelaw Main; Edward Leslie Dann, Newcastle; Aubrey Claude Dare, Gloucester; David Hughes Davies, Tighes Hill; William Davies, Tea Gardens; John Thomas Dillon, Barrington; Roland John Dives, Tea Gardens; Lucien Dubois, Hamilton; Harlie Muir Eckford, West Maitland; Frank Elmer, Kurri Kurri; John Albert Evans, Newcastle; Martin Flynn, Cessnock; John Henry Forbes, Newcastle; Donald Desmond Geary, Moonan Flat; Samuel Gilchrist, Carrington; William Henry Gilchrist, Hamilton; David Alexander Gillespie, Waratah; Earle Rupert Gilsenan, Kurri Kurri; William Oscar Gorton, Washpool; Rufus Myles Gorton, Stroud; Samuel Vincent Heffernan, Murrurundi; Herbert Henry Hillier, Stewarts Brook; Henry Charles Holstein, Barrington; Joseph Irving, Pelaw Main; Andrew Johnson, Millers Forest; George Ross Johnston, Lorn; Evan John Kelly, Ravensworth; John Patrick Kenny, Singleton; Austin David King, Barrington; Edward Laidler, Seahampton; Michael James Landers, Barrington; Andrew Joseph Laurie, Gloucester; Thomas Henry Laurie, Rawdon Vale; Alfred James Lawrence, Cooks Hill; Claude Leslie Marler, Port Stephens; Charles Frederick Mason, West Wallsend; Robert Maxwell, Kurri Kurri; George McDougall, Catherine Hill Bay; John McDougall, Catherine Hill Bay; Joseph McDougall, Catherine Hill Bay; Henry John McDoldrick, West Maitland; Lyell Clifford McIlveen, Islington; Charles John McKenzie, East Maitland; William McLennan, Barrington; George Augustus Mills, Moonan Flat; Ernest Milton, Singleton; Abraham Mitchell, Scone; Isaac Moore, Rawdon Vale; Frederick Emanuel Morton, Kurri Kurri; Clifton James Mychael, Moonan Flat; Cecil Lawrence Myers, Hamilton; George Parr, Newcastle; Oscar Alexander Perkins, Kurri Kurri; Roy Phipps, Baerami; Charles Henry Pittman, Broke; George Pringle, Kurri Kurri; Albert William Rendle, Lambton; Lancelot Phillip Richards, Merewether; James Percy Riley, Stewarts Brook; Stewart Hamilton Robson, Tighes Hill; Daniel Rose, Baerami; Ernest Ross, Killingworth; William Joseph Ryan, Merewether; Melville Scott, Newcastle; Alfred George Sheppard, Kurri Kurri; Robert Austin Simpson, Moonan Flat; Jack Skehan, Cooks Hill; Colin Stafford, Mayfield; Serge Tarasov, Newcastle; George Stephen Upton, Anna Bay; Edward Voisey, Cessnock; James Stephen Waddell, Waratah; Dennis Walsh, Mount Olive; Thomas Leishman Wardrop, Carrington; James William, Watson, Wickham; John Copeland Webeck, Copeland North; Harry Lambert Wheeler, Newcastle; Francis George Whyte, Hamilton; Isaac Wise, Stanford Merthyr; Ray Wolstenholme, West Maitland; David Henry Zerk, Muswellbrook.

Deaths for the weekPrivate George Gibb, Wallsend.Captain Malcolm John Cotton, East Maitland.Private Ernest William Capp, Singleton.

David Dial OAM is a Hunter Valley-based military historian. Follow David’s research at facebook南京夜网/HunterValleyMilitaryHistory