Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales
Antill war diary, 1915-1916 / John Macquarie Antill
[Transcribers notes: John Macquarie Antill, the son of a grazier, was born on 26 January 1866 at Jarvisfield, Picton, N.S.W. He was a professional soldier. He saw action in the Boer War and on the outbreak of the Great War was appointed Brigade Major with the 3rd Light Horse Brigade which comprised the 8th, 9th and 10th Light Horse Regiments, with the rank of Lt. Colonel. The brigade fought at Gallipoli as infantry and Antill took temporary command on 20 September. Following evacuation the Brigade returned to Egypt and he was promoted Temp. Brig. General on 1st Jan 1916.
This diary is a typescript copy of the 3rd Australian Light Horse Brigade War Diary written by Lt. Col. Antill in his position as Brigade Major. It begins on 27th August, although he wrote the Brigade Diary from early May. His entries continue until 20th March 1916 after which they are written by another person. The diary is written from a more personal perspective than is usually the case with Brigade and Regiment War Diaries. It includes comments critical of the organisation in respect of men sent away sick, p19; lack of replacements following heavy losses suffered by Brigade and no relief for men continuously in trenches for long periods; lack of basic amenities p31; lack of adequate shelter and clothing in winter. It also includes some criticism of British troops, p8 and p34.
John Antill was in command during the action at The Nek on 7 August which resulted in especially heavy losses suffered by the 8th and 10th L.H. Regiments. Published accounts of the action have generally blamed the Brigade Commander, Brig. Gen. F.G. Hughes and his deputy, Lt. Col. Antill, for persisting in the attacks in the face of superior firepower from the Turks]
by Major General J. M. Antill CB CMG
Comd. 3rd A.L.H. Brigade
and 2nd A.I.F. Brigade France
Presented to the Mitchell Library from
JM Antill Major General
15 October 1929
No. 4 Secn.
Narrative of Events
1915 27th August
Heavy bombardment of trenches Gen. Coxs No. 6 Secn. followed by attack of some trenches by N.Z. and other troops at 5 p.m. Heavy shrapnel fire from Turks at night continuous musketry fire. At 3 a.m. N.Z. occupied and prolonged their trenches 40 yds. also 2 commn. trenches to top of hill. Connaughts took trenches C to D but lost them at 8.30 p.m. and our 9th L.H. who marched out from No. 4 Secn. were sent out to regain them if possible. N.Z. captured an enemys M.G.; otherwise the situation the same. 10th L.H. marched out at 7.30 p.m. to No. 6 Secn. The 20th Battn. 5th Inf. Bde. took over trenches from us and all day occupied in handing over orders, maps, sketches and advising and assisting Relieving Troops Br. Gen. visited Anzac to confer about strengthening the Bde.
Message that L. Col. Brazier wounded on way out to new positions. Br. went to see him The general position appears STALEMATE: a demonstration last night at N.E.R. [Nek?] disclosed Turk trenches strongly held. Br. posted recommendation re promotion of L. Col. Antill to N.Z. and A. Major McLaurin to Hospital 26/8 and Lt. Mack and 21 others 27/8.
The 8th L.H. to Aghyl Dere from No. 4 Secn. and B.H.Q. after handing over to 5th An. I. Bde. to Sazli Dere (Nth Arm) between Big Table Top and Rhododendron Spur which is to be its Area B.H.Q: None of the Bde. have had an hours rest after some 14 weeks in trenches and are in a bad way All are split up and like other units wedged in anywhere and everywhere Not a single bayonet to-day being with its H.Qrs. The 10th were sent in to finish a job from which the Connaughts cleared out.
The following recd. by the G.O.C. (Godley) Congratulations on
1915 29th August
fine work done by one of your Regiments.
The 8th are 10 officers 149 others including M.Gs. and details and muster 87 bayonets requiring 15os [officers?] 362 others to complete. Divn. order to-day contains new allotment of Areas so it looks like a Winter occupation. Came across Turkish cartridges to-day with bullets taken out and reversed also head of T. 6 shell with a large wooden plug instead of being solid and made of 1/8 iron sheet:
Numbers of dead unburied Turks around here 80 I (2 & 3) No particulars of 9th and 10th casualties last 2 days but hear they were heavy and serious at this rate we shall have absolutely no nucleus to build upon: but nobody seems to care merely fill the gap, get blown out, and done with The feeling on this point is particularly strong and our Troops are being butchered to try and make good for the recent drafts of men from Engd., notwithstanding they have had continuous bullocking in trenches and are just about worn out: See daily leakage from sick The matter has several times been represented without response.
5 officers and 121 others of C sqn. 11th L.H. reported at 5 p.m. later L. Col. Abbott and Regt. Hd. Qrs. 12th L.H.
On 27th 28th the 9th L.H. were sent to capture portion of a Turkish trench lost by a British Battn. This they did (AB) but lost portion being bombed out: Same night L. Col. Reynell 9th L.H.attacked BC with 75 men. He got into AB which was partially held by others of his Regt. see (1) then made for BC see (1 and 2). This was shortly after midnight He was seen to disappear with some of his men into some T. Trenches. Some 20 afterwards were traced through Dressing Stns. and 4 unwounded. The casualties reported are, L. Col. Reynell. Capts. Callary and Jaffray and 68 others this will probably be corrected later On 28 29th 9th L.H. were again sent at the trench and link up with the 10th L.H. which had about 1 am. The losses of the latter were, Killed Capt. Fry 2nd Lieut. L.C. Burgess (wounded) C.H. MacBean and G.A. Leake and 3
1915 30th August
others: Wounded, 2nd Lieuts. Sanderson and Throssell other ranks 54 Total 57 - The affair was a brilliant example of dash and courage as the Turks held some of the trenches and all in front, from which with maxim fire, our men were bombed continuously, the captured Trenches only 4 feet deep were nearly full of dead of both sides and these had to be cleared and deepened without any cover: Generals Cox, Godley and Russell spoke of the work as very fine Lt. Col. Reynell was a splendid man and an exceptionally fine and dashing leader and his loss will be severely felt:
Gen Cox informs the Brigr. that the post is so important that he will not consent to the withdrawal of the 9th and 10th until the trenches have been made perfectly safe, consolidated, and other Troops broken into them. Hill 60 practically controls the N. and E. salients after another position to its N had been taken. Under the new allotment and disposition of Troops 3rd LHB holds Table Top and N. slopes of Rhododendron as No. 5 Section Behind us and nearer the sea are the 1st L.H.B. (General Chauvel)
Extracts from Despatch from Major W.H. Scott acting C.O. 9th L.H. re recent operations. [in right margin] 117
Arrived Aghul Dere 26th inst., rested 27th and ordered 7 p.m. men to be sent to support Gen. Russell on Hill 60. At 9.30 p.m. Lieut. Phillis and 50 men went into fire trench right of Sector to support Gen. Russell At 11.30 p.m. Major Parsons, Capt. Jaffray and Tempy. Lieut. McDonald with 100 men and at midnight Capt. Callary and 25 men were also sent of these, Major Parsons with 52 men A Sqn. bombed their way along Fire Trench to M from BG, about 100 yds. but had to retire about 20 yds. and erect barricades at N. At 12.30 a.m. the CO Lt. Col
Reynell, Capts. Callary and Jaffray and 2nd Lieut. McDonald with 75 men attempted to cross from D to E to join the N.Zs. and fight their way along trench FG. from N to G. They appeared to loose direction in scrub and arrived at C in trench BG which Major Parsons was holding and at once set out E but came under withering fire, rifles, M.G. and bombs and the party literally faded away Lt. McDonald S.M. Shaw and three men got back and about 20 wounded crawled in One Sergt. and 15 men on right were detached and finally reached our Trench at F Lieut. McDonald after reaching safety then gallantly returned four times and brought in 4 wounded men. Major Parsons party were then bombed back to P. but when day broke fought back to C casualties 20. 27th was quiet but a few men were sniped at 10 a.m. 29th Lieut. McDonald with a covering party fought his way with bombs to M and connected with 10th L.H. who had same time rushed Trench B G K and taken it Bodies of Lt. Col. Reynell and Capt. Jaffray were received on 29th
[Sketch map of positions around Hill 60 by J.M. Antill]
P.B.L.D.F.E.N. were held by N.Z.M.R. prior to above
Extract from C.O. 10th L.H. on recent operations:-
On 28th proceeded to Table Top via Chalak Dere but when No. 3 outpost was reached ordered to proceed to No. 6 Section No 2 S/section Br. Gen. Russell Damak Jelir Bair 92 S.I. Lieut. Howard and Burgess and 50 men were detailed at 2 a.m.
29/8 under Genl. Russells instructions to proceed to Reserve Trenches carrying bombs 29th Regt. in bivouac At 7 a.m. Lt. Col. Brazier wounded over eye, command of Regt. devolving on Major J.B. Scott. At 0810 message from Genl. Russell asking for another 50 men but these were not immediately required At 1500 all officers reported to Gen. Russell and went round Trenches. At 2030 opn. order instructing 10th L.H. to assault uncaptured Trenches centre and left of Kaijak Aghala on N.W. slope of Hill 60 S.W. 100 yds.
On 29/8 proceeded under rifle, M.G. and bomb fire with few casualties took possession of Turk Trenches which were lightly held Thro night heavy bombing: daylight determined counter attack which was repulsed with much loss. During day position consolidated and Trenches deepened and repaired 2 M.Gs. emplaced trenches bomb proofed and Commn. trenches made. Although exhausted still in possession.
KILLED - Officers 3 Others 11 14 - Capt. Fry, Lts. Leake & McBean
MISSING - Officers - Others 12 12
WOUNDED - Officers 3 Others 56 59 Lts. Sanderson, Burgess and Throssell
Regt. congratulated by Gens. Cox, Godley, and Russell
Reported 3rd L. H.F.A. 3 officers, Lt. Col. Downes, Capt. White, Capt. Anderson and 45 others These have
[In right margin]
Lieut. Throssell awarded V.C. 10th L.H. and 5 men D.C.Ms. (115 Serg. W.J. Henderson 313 Lce. Corp. H.N. MacKee: 981 Trooper T.B. Stanley (10th L.H.) 913 Trooper G.S.Peel & 902 Trooper W.J. Vines 3rd L.H. Field Ambulance
1915 2nd Sept
1 Troop D. Sqn. 9th L.H. took over Table Top post this morning made sketches of forward positions Lt. Col. Abbott visited A.H.Q. and saw Genl. Birdwood 8th L.H., 1.w [wounded]; 10th L.H. 4 men k [killed]; 1w, 18 men to hospital Lieut. Hughes (S.C.) to Hospital also B. Ms. batman BUS Captn. Cowlishaw A.M.C. to 16th Battn. Lieut. Oliver from Hospital returned Major Parsons sick to Hospital Marched into Bde Area and attached Three officers, 206 of 1st, - 5th Suffolks: 50 other ranks of 1st. 8th Hants: 25 others 8th M.Gs.: 20 others 9th M.Gs.: 5 officers 55 others, including M.G. Section:
D Sqn. 9th L.H. and 2 officers, 172 of 54th Divn. took over Canterbury Slope from Canterbury Infy. (Lt. Col. Young.) 8th L.H. M.Gs, to Table Top.
[In right margin] G. 929 B.M. 699 B.M. 703
Took over Area B section 5 Capt. Skelsi N.Z.R.E. cabled and received instructions re defences of Post. All the men of any experience whatever retained in No. 6 area. Total number of rank and file available for Trenches at present are 8th L.H. Nil, 9th L.H., 108 (new and transferred from 11th L.H.) 10th L.H. Nil Hants and Suffolks 233 341. Altogether unsafe and inadequate as represented to Division. There are no supports. No Reserves, and all the men who are not raw are dead beat The Territorials are poor physiqued and undersized and when put to work with tools at digging make the poorest show There are only 4 officers with them. Should any misadventure occur in this command the above is recorded but responsibility cannot rest with the Brigade from which all its men have been detached and sent to another section.
[In right margin] B.M. 711 G. 954
Spent all the morning supervising new area There is an accumulation of all sorts of arms, equipment, ammunition used and unused tools clothing scattered everywhere The place is filthy and covered
with tins and rubbish Afternoon Major Wagstaff and General Chauvel called and it was arranged mutually that the latter should take over Destroyer Hill from to-morrow The G.O.C. also called and I accompanied him to Table Top.
All quiet All the forenoon with C.O. 9th L.H. and C.O. Engineer in trenches and inspecting gave instructions for collection of scattered material and new trenches.
[In right margin] B.M. 741
Attack on Knoll 60. 27th. 28th. 29th August
by G.O.C. Medn. Forces.
September 3rd. 1915
During the action of 21st August a footing had been gained on Knoll 60 North of Kaiajik Aghala but the knoll itself had not been captured. The capture of the hill was entrusted to Major-General Cox. The bombardment commenced at 4 p.m. and was continued until 5 p.m. at which hour the assault was delivered, on the right by 350 rifles from the 4th and 5th Australian Brigades, in the centre by 400 rifles of the New Zealand Mounted Rifles and 5th Australian Brigade and on the left by 250 rifles of the 5th Bn. Connaught Rangers.
The attack instantly drew a heavy fire of enemys Shrapnel, machine guns and rifles, followed shortly afterwards by heavy shell on the Knoll and shrapnel all over the position, including trenches still occupied by the Turks. The Connaught Rangers showing brilliant dash in the attack, reached their objective, and commenced a gallant fight along the communication trench. The right column was, however, checked by machine gun fire and for some time could make no headway. In the centre the New Zealanders
with splendid dash, carried the cross communication trench, but were held up before reaching the top of the Knoll and confused fighting continued until 9.30 p.m. by which time, about nine-tenths of the objective had been taken.
It was arranged to put fresh troops in to capture the remainder of the hill at midnight. Before this could be done, however, the Connaught Rangers were bombed out of their position and the 9th Australian Light Horse who attempted to retake it at 3.45 a.m. were unable to do so. During the 28th, the day was spent in consolidating gains and making communication trenches from the original line, and preparations were made to take the remainder of the Knoll on the night of the 28th 29th.
At one Oclock on the morning of the 29th the 10th Australian Light Horse carried the trench on the top and retained it and the knoll passed into our possession
The position had been consolidated, and a good view is now obtained over the valley to the North.
This gallant action adds 400 more acres of Turkish Territory to the country occupied by Anzac. The fighting during these operations was almost entirely hand-to-hand and of a very severe nature. The brunt of the fighting was borne by the Indian Brigade, the New Zealand Mounted Rifles, the 5th, the 4th Australian Infantry Brigade, and the 18th Battalion of the 5th Australian Brigade.
3rd L.H. Brigade
the 9th and 10th Australian Light Horse Regiments were also engaged and took a conspicuous part in the final assault, the posts of honor in the line of Turkish Trenches, which we eventually held being occupied by the New Zealand Mounted Rifle Brigade and the 10th Australian Light
Horse, supported by a mixed detachment of the 4th Australian Infantry Brigade.
The casualties in this force amounted to 1000 of all ranks, but very heavy loss was inflicted on the Turks, not only in the desperate hand-to-hand fighting in the Trenches but also from artillery bombardment.
Three machine guns, two of which were used at once against the Turks and 46 prisoners taken, as well as three trench mortars, 300 Turkish Rifles, 60,000 rounds of small arm ammunition, and 500 bombs. Judging by the heaps of Turkish dead in the trenches, and observation from the Kaiajik Dere trenches, which command the Turkish line of retreat, and owing to our artillery getting at the Turks during the retreat, it is estimated that the Turkish losses must have been at least 5,000.
Brigadier General F.G. Hughes wishes to record his highest appreciation of the fine work done by the 9th and 10th Light Horse Regiments in this series of actions and also of the excellent work by the 8th Light Horse Regiment who assisted the carrying on the defence of these trenches and successfully repulsed all counter attacks.
The General, in bearing testimony to all this work is fully alive to the strenuous and continuous duties in No. 4 section, Russells Top, from which trenches they were taken for this special task.
The casualties have been very heavy in all ranks, and in addition, to the wounded, he deeply deplored the loss of Lt. Col. C. Reynell, Captains H.P. Fry, P.I. Callary, A.J. Jaffray and Lieuts. G.A. Leake, W. Cameron and G.H. McBean, and the grand men of the Brigade, who, one and all did such splendid work. Of the original Brigade Officers who left Australia, the following only have not been sick or off duty -
[In left margin] 8th Sept.
Lt. Col. J.M. Antill, C.B.; Bde. Major.: 8th L.H.; Lt. Col. Deeble; Lt. Higgins 9th L.H.; Lt. A.J.S. Hutchison: 10th L.H. Major J.B. Scott: Captn. Hamlin, Lieuts. H.C.H. Robertson, T.A. Kidd, Captn. Bentley and 12 of 31 reinforcement Officers, 12 are on duty. 23 have been wounded, 31 killed, and 24 away sick.
Hard at work deepening the new trenches and strengthening defences and building bivouacs: 2 N.Z.M.G. sections withdrawn 1 Officer 47 of Hants returned to 54 Div. No. 6 Section in return 18 of 8th L.H.: 1 officer and 14 9th L.H. and 18 of 10th L.H. from 54th Divn. Nothing to report, but the enemy was unusually quiet Trenches being extended Lt. Col. P.P. Abbott appointed to command 10th L.H., vice L. Col. Brazier (wounded) resigned.
[In right margin] DRo 562
Units of 8th, 9th and 10th L.H. Detached with 54th Divn. returned to this Brigade and Suffolk Battn. moved out at 0900, to 54th Divn. Meeting of C.Cs. and new dispositions, etc. planned No.1 Post 10th L.H.; No.2 Post 9th L.H., and 8th L.H. finding Post on Table Top and patrols as well as working parties -- 350 men occupy trenches facing S from Canterbury slope with 6 M.Gs. N.Z. and 3rd L.H. a Troop E. end of Destroyer Hill. Division ask for special ammunition return owing to general leakage.:
Tr Lakeland 10th L.H. killed and buried by Col. Mornington 1st L.H. Bde. This man only arrived as a stowaway from Egypt a few days ago: Sniping is very consistent and accurate from Battleship and Snipers Ridge men hit every day from a plunging fire. Busy making plan of a new position trenches and surrounding country.
Inspecting trenches and improving them: 1 officer
50 others Norfolk Regt. arrived for instruction and half detailed to 9th, balance to 10th Regt. Tempy Captn. Baker sick to Hospital Transfers of Staff N.C.Os. of 11th and 12th L.H. to 8th L.H. Canteen stores distributed.
Continuing improvement of Trenches Snipers are bad casualties regular each day.
Preparing a map of trenches and locality Nothing special usual artillery fire from C.H. Bair no results.
While acting as a covering party to a sapping and brush clearing detail in No. 1 Post, one man killed by an enemys Patrol. Inquiry to be held. Lt. Col. Deeble, 2nd Lieut. Wilson and Lt. Hutchinson to Hospital. 12 men sick to Hospital 13 Regl. Signallers back for trench duty with Regts. Lieut. Williams 9th Regt. to Hospital on 12th inst. sick with influenza Major J.B. Scott temporarily in command of 8th L.H. vice Deeble sick o 228/25th.
Three men (2, 9th L.H., 1 Norfolks) shrapnelled in trenches Inquiry by Br. Gen. re death of Tr. Facey 10th L.H. while on reconnaissance duty with Tr. Bennett night of 14th inst.
Authority in reply to B.M. 823 to train a complete M.G. detachment for extra guns allotted and to form the detachment in addition to establishment. (G. 149 N.Z. and A Divn.) Major Nicholas returned to duty 10th L.H. Lt. Arblaster M.G. Staff Officer, vice Hutchison sick Lieut. Higgins to be act. adj. of 8th vice Tempy. Capt. Arblaster.
[In right margin] Sq. 240 16th
1 Platoon A Coy. 26th Battn. reported for working on trenches and Roads 1 officer (2nd Lt. J.W. Murphy) 2 Sergts. 41 others attached 8th L.H. for quarters and rations.
Work continuing in Trenches and Saps.
73 Reinforcements for 8th, 9th, and 10th arrived from Heliopolis.
Inspection of Trenches and saps In afternoon enemy made demonstration at 1730 for ½ an hour accompanied by Rifle and M.G. fire from Battleship and Snipers Ridge one of our own 18 prs landed in our trenches few feet from Col. Abbott failed to explode Norfolks marched without reference to B.H. Qrs. evidently in instructions from their own C.O. Work going well in Trenches and Saps.
3rd A.L.H. Brigade. September, 18th, 1915
Bde. H.Q. Effective Strength to-day Offs. 5; O Ranks 14; Total 19
Killed Offs. nil; O Ranks nil
Away Wounded Offs. 1; O Ranks 1
Away Sick Offs. 1; O Ranks 18
3 Sig. T.P. Effective Strength to-day Offs. nil; O Ranks 19; Total 19
Killed Offs. nil; O Ranks nil
Away Wounded Offs. 1; O Ranks nil
Away Sick Offs. 1; O Ranks 17
8th L.H. Effective Strength to-day Offs. 7; O Ranks 139; Total 146
Killed Offs. 16; O Ranks 186
Away Wounded Offs. 4; O Ranks 123
Away Sick Offs. 10; O Ranks 227
Total - 571
9th L.H. Effective Strength to-day Offs. 15; O Ranks 311; Total 326
Killed Offs. 6; O Ranks 54
Away Wounded Offs. 3; O Ranks 139
Away Sick Offs. 12; O Ranks 264
Total - 501
10th L.H. Effective Strength to-day Offs. 9; O Ranks 193; Total 202
Killed Offs. 11; O Ranks 101
Away Wounded Offs. 13; O Ranks 152
Away Sick Offs. 8; O Ranks 231
Total Effective Strength to-day Offs. 36; O Ranks 676; Total 712
Killed Offs. 33; O Ranks 341
Away Wounded Offs. 22; O Ranks 415
Away Sick Offs. 31; O Ranks 757
Total - 1647
Total landed to date including to 7th Reinfs. and 11th & 12th L.H. absorbed -- 2359
Losses all ranks Killed 374, Wounded 437, Missing 29, Transfd. 19,
[Total] 1647 [incl. away sick 788]
To-days effective strength - 712
1915 20th Sept.
One man killed, one wd. 26th Battn. while working in Saps The Brigadier sick to-day and to Hospital Lt. Col. J.M. Antill, C.B. placed in command during his absence Lt. W.S.K. Hughes rejoins from sick. He states many men at Mudros well, who cannot get back to duty owing to no methods existing, and that he was officially informed, until asked for by Brigades they would remain See the extraordinary state of Brigade by state in last page Howitzer shelling trenches prepared by Turks on W. Slope of Battleship Hill as report in B.M. much work was done by night by enemy as counter to the saps we are working out from our trenches in the Canterbury Slope:
Visited Anzac and beach to-day first time for several weeks away from Section, and surprised to see the great changes Terraces take the place of all our previous primitive dugouts The tops of hills razed, tents erected, a tramline from Anzac to the old Mule Gully thousands of tons of stores of all descriptions and altogether a transformation denoting a permanent camp. Water laid on, and crowds of mules and road parties In this Section we have made a good road up Sazli (N) put up water tanks and laid 14 days supplies against the expected rain.
The Brigade has worked hard to make defences safe The Section is divided into two No. 1 and No. 2 Post, former 9th L.H. (Lt. Col. Grant) and latter 10th L.H. (Lt. Col. Abbott) while the 8th L.H. now very weak under Major J.B. Scott 10th L.H. (vice L. Col. Deeble to Hospital) finds the detached Post of 12 men Table Top and the two nightly Sazli (S) patrols from Antills Lookout and Kidd Sap:- Health of Bde. fair but usual number of sick chiefly stomachs to Hospital also one Diptheria case to-day: Lieut. W.S.K. Hughes will take over Bde. Major, vice Lt. Col.
1915 20th Sept.
J.M. Antill, C.B. in command, and Lt. Mackenzie acting Staff Captain: Lt. Toomey will be Bde. Supply and Ordnance Officer.
Brigade Clerk Segt. Gilten to Hospital to-day (enteric) and Lt. Col. Antill is now the only member of the Staff including batmen, left: A good deal of sniping goes on as we are on a lower grade than Battleship and cannot protect our trenches We are driving out 2 Saps to cover dead ground between our trenches and the Donga and have done an immense amount of work since the Bde. has been here.
Casualties from sick list four days have been:- 10-12-13-4 -39.
Genl. Chauvel inspected position and trenches, which are going well forward: Placed Garland Mortar in E2 trench No. 2 Post Object of searching hiding places and posts of Turkish Patrols:
Spent morning in trenches directing improvement of Trenches, saps, etc: Four 18 pr. shells fell in trenches and 9th bivouac from our own guns to S seriously wounding one man: Reported same, this is the third occasion during last week: Sniping still very troublesome from Battleship and Snipers Nest.
[Sketch map of Turk positions around Canterbury Slope by J.M. Antill dated 24.9.1915]
1915 24th Sept.
Inspected Trenches with C.O.R.E. again shelled by our own 18 prs. third time in last 4 days also by enemy at 1730, both Bivouacs and Trenches One man killed and 3 wounded former by our own guns Working incessantly to improve our trenches and saps but are very short-handed and men dropping out each day. We require at least double the number to hold against attack having less than one men per yard without either supports or Reserves demonstration at 2000 with
1915 24th Sept.
Rifle, M.Gs. and mortars to locate enemys positions and strength drew a lot of fire, especially M.Gs. - We have a strong position very thinly held and could not hold against a determined attack.
Report to D.H.Q. in detail showing number of officers and other ranks absent, sick, wounded, etc. This is colossal, representing two-thirds of the Bde. 55 officers and 1209 others many of them dating back as fit from June, - July. The condition of affairs indicates an absence of system or control once an individual is evacuated for a trifling sickness such as, boils, cold, diarrhoea or other and from sufficient evidence it is clear, once a man gets away he can stay away or go to England or elsewhere -- This, to the mind of the writer who has been here throughout, constitutes the most serious phase of the most unsatisfactory conditions which exist and point to an entire lack of co-ordination and control once an officer or man goes sick -- Ample evidence is rampant in regard to this great abuse which no representation has been able to alter or improve.
Major J.B. Scott goes back as 2nd. in command of 10th L.H. and Major Nicholas assumes tempy. commd of the 8th L.H. which has no senior officer left: Captain Arblaster Ag. M.G. officer of the 10th recently promoted from ranks takes over their important duties The bde. is in a very serious condition in regard to its depletion in all ranks It has been in Trenches since May 21st without any rest or respite, and is practically worn out As already noted, if a serious attack were made we cannot hold our trenches and this has been continually represented with no result We hold about 550 to 600 yds. with less than
1915 26th Sept.
400 bayonets, no supports or Reserves: - 6 old M. Guns and only 1 M.G. Officer left: Bombed last evening by enemy evidently with a long range, mortar -- Three long 4 feet bomb tails or round sticks found where bombs fell Two men hit last night working very hard to put trenches safe
Gen. Godley (G.O.C. Div) inspected Area and Trenches and was very pleased with progress being made saw men recommended for commissions 8th L.H. S.S.M. McGrath, Trooper C.S. Austin: 9th L.H. RSM Slattery (to be W.O.) 10th L.H. R.S.M. Rosevear, S,SM MacCallum, Sergt. Crowther
Very heavy shelling heard N around Sufla Bay from 1800 for an hour and unusual stir about Amafarta -- Star shells and small arms fire Lieut. Fisher C.O. Engineers away enteric, also 8 men from usual sickness Lieut. Oliver sent to 7th brigade to instruct in Mortar and Bombs Patrols sent out to try and locate Turkish watering places and Bivouacs no success news last night that our army in France making a push. Sent list of officers and men away from Brigade they number 55 officers a 1209 others
13 to Hospital (1W 9th L.H.): Enemy now active in Bombs which are fired some 400 yds. or more from a mortar with a long stick 4 6 by 2. These are thrown with great accuracy Last night Pte. Friday and two others under Sergt. Linacre patrolled to the bottom of donga to try and ascertain watering places of Turks came across two patrols did not fire in accordance with my instructions Approval at last received send an officer to Egypt to purchase stores for Regts. for winter sending Lt. Oliver to-morrow
Visited 3rd L.H. with Lt. Col. Abbott and saw Genl. Chauvel and Lt. Col. Meredith Installed M.G. on Table Top and did good work in rear and enfilade of Snipers Nest and comn. trenches 4 sick and 2w
1915 29th Sept.
(D. Sqn. 9th L.H.) from Shrapnel, which is now very constant: Turks obviously concerned at our activity in extending Saps M.Gs. and bombs from Garland Mortar. Cap. Hore of 8th L.H. retd. from wounds (Cairo) states our details and sick are being formed into units one sqn. per Regt. for service Soudan or Suez. This shuts off all our Reinforcements. Letter to Major Love, 10th L.H. calling for explanation of his appn. 29th Aug. to G.O.C. 2nd A. Divn. for employment and conveying an instruction from G.O.C. A.N.Z. pointing out the extreme irregularity of his action in addressing on a matter of this nature without first submitting through authorized channels.
M.G. in Table Top doing good work at Snipers Nest.
[In right margin] B.M. 1023
Daily State Sept. 29th 1915
B. H.Qrs. Effective Strength Offs. 5; Ors 16; Total 21
Killed Ofs. nil; ORs nil
Away Wounded Ofs. 1; ORs. 1
Away Sick Ofs. 1; ORs 20
Transferred - nil
3rd Signal Troop. Effective Strength Offs. nil; Ors 15 Total 15
Killed Ofs. nil; ORs nil
Away Wounded Ofs. 1; ORs nil
Away Sick Offs. nil; O Ranks 20
Transferred - nil
8th L.H. Effective Strength Offs. 7; Ors 125; Total 132
Killed Ofs. 16; ORs 187
Away Wounded Ofs. 4; ORs 124
Away Sick Ofs. 10; ORs 239
Total - 585
9th L.H. Effective Strength Offs. 15; Ors 280; Total 295
Killed Ofs. 6; O Ranks 54
Away Wounded Offs. 3; ORs 143
Away Sick Ofs. 12; ORs 307
Total - 548
10th L.H. Effective Strength Offs. 8; Ors 159; Total 167
Killed Ofs. 11; ORs 101
Away Wounded Ofs. 13; ORs 157
Away Sick Ofs. 9; ORs 259
Total Effective Strength Offs. 35; Ors 595; Total 630
Killed Ofs. 33; ORs 342
Away Wounded Ofs. 22; ORs 425
Away Sick Ofs. 32; ORs 845
Total - 1747
Total landed to date (Including 7th Reinfs. & 11th & 12th Regts. absorbed) All Ranks 2377
To-days effective strength - 630
Losses all ranks Killed 375, Wounded 447, Sick 877, Missing 29, Transferred. 19,
by General Sir Ian Hamilton, G.C.B., D.S.O., A.D.C.
Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean Expeditionary Force
7th September, 1915
The Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, desires formally to record the fine feat of arms achieved by the troops under the command of Lt. General. Sir W.R. Birdwood during the battle of Sari Bair.
The fervent desire of all ranks to close with the enemy, the impetuosity of their onset and the steadfast valour with which they maintained the long struggle, these will surely make appeal to their fellow-countrymen all over the world.
The gallant capture of the almost impregnable Lone Pine trenches by the Australian Division, and the equally gallant defence of the position against repeated counter attacks are exploits which will live in history.
The determined assaults carried out from other parts of the Australian Divisions line were also of inestimable service to the whole force, preventing as they did the movement of large bodies of reinforcements to the northern flank.
The Troops under the command of Major-General Sir A.J. Godley, and particularly the New Zealand and Australian Division, were called upon to carry out one of the most difficult military operations that has ever been attempted a night march and assault by several columns in intricate mountainous country, strongly entrenched, and held by a numerous and determined enemy. Their brilliant conduct during this operation and the success they achieved have won for them a reputation as soldiers of whom any country must be proud
To the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, and to those who were associated with that famous Corps in the Battle of Sari Bair The Maoris, Sikhs, Gurkhas, and the new troops of the 10th and 13th Divisions from the Old Country Sir Ian Hamilton tenders his appreciation of their efforts his admiration of their gallantry, and his thanks for their achievements. It is an honour to command a force which numbers such men as these in its ranks, and it is the Commander-in-Chiefs high privilege to acknowledge that honour.
Signed W.P. Braithwaite, (Major General.)
Chief of General Staff, M.E.F.
1915 1st Oct.
Four men to H1. and 2 back to duty. Generals Birdwood and Godley inspected trenches and expressed pleasure and surprise at the amount of work done and the excellent condition of the lines and trenches Enemy is now very consistent daily in shelling, in retaliation of our persistent worrying of his positions by day and night with M. Guns and R. fire also E [enemy] is putting in a prodigious amount of work opposite on Battleship evidently in response to our efforts here. Fishers and Kidds Saps are being pushed on and are now out each 100 ft. and tunnels 37 and 24 respectively with branch T heads halfway along length on either side another week will break through at end of bluffs which will then afford a splendid observation from both No. 1 and 2 Posts into Donga below. Antills Lookout also on West Pt. had been made into a fine position and we are now breaking through there and joining up with main comn. Sap on Sugarloaf, thus linking up the whole position On Table Top a new comn. trench has been finished Reserve Ammunition, Magazine has been completed and filled and 10 days Reserve
1915 1st Oct.
Stores have been collected at top of Dere under Table Top An excellent mule Road finished right up to Trenches and bridges built During the month the 3rd L.H. Bde. has been here, all this has been done and the position consolidated and made safe, after a vast amount of work day and night: We get lots of attention from enemy in return - Provost Sergt. Williams sick in Hospital. E does not appreciate our bombs and M.G. fire which interferes with their work. Lt. Dean sick to H.
At last some reinforcements when very badly wanted (6th Reinfs.) as follows 8th L.H. = 1o [officers] and 17 others:- 9th L.H. 26o and 34 others 10th = 1o and 57 others and 7 men returned also 1o and 17 others for D Sqn (late 11th L.H.) now 9th L.H. in all 5o and 126 others
Brigr. A.D.C. Lt. Hughes also returned from H. Gave Snipers Nest a good shaking up with 4.5 Howitzer and our M.Gs. with Rifle fire at 1700. This place has been a perfect hornets nest for snipers since our Troops landed.
[Sketch map by J.M.Antill]
Sketch of Snipers Nest from Antills Lookout
Rhodon Spur 1915
The Military Situation
Extract from Mr. Asquiths Statement in the House of Commons on Wedy. Sept. 15th 1915
No words of admiration can be too strong, I am sure the House will agree, for the gallantry and resource displayed by the whole of our Armies, and, if I may give one conspicuous illustration, by the Australian and New Zealand Troops throughout these hazardous and arduous operations.
Position normal. big bombardment going on on south at Helles Some 70 or more Turks reported by 9th L.H. patrol moving down Donga in front of our position. 1st L.H. Bde. informed: 10th L.H. 2w: To Hospital 7: To duty from Hospl. 7 also Lt. Tunbridge
Broke through and established connection with left of 1st L.H. Bde. just at Sugarloaf near Antills lookout: from shrapnel fire, which is now very consistent 3 machine gunners of 8th L.H. wounded and 3 to Hospital: Lt. Phillis, 9th L.H. to Hospital 1 man from Hosp. returned:
New appointments 8th L.H. Lt. Higgins temp. Capt. and Ag. Adjt. from 16/9: 2nd Lt. G.M. Sproat to be Lieut. from 16/9; 2nd Lt. W.D. Oliver Lieut. from 14/9: S.S.M. W. McGrath to be Temp. 2nd. Lieut. vice Lt. W. Robinson (wd.) 14/9: Tr. T.S. Austin Temp. 2nd Lieut. vice Crawford (w) 14/9: 9th L.H.:- Lt. K.A. MacKenzie Capt. 14/9: 2nd Lt. A.E. Dean Temp. Lieut. 14/9: 2nd Lt. Pender Temp. Lt. 14/9 2nd Lt. H. Williams Temp. Lt. 14/9 10th L.H. Lt. T. Kidd Temp. Capt. 14/9: 2nd Lt. Harper Lieut. 14/9: S.M.G. Rosevear to be Temp. 2nd Lieut. vice Craig (w) 14/9: S.S.M. R.W. Macallum 2nd. (Temp.) Lieut. vice A.T. Williams (s) 14/9: Sergt. R.C. Crowther Temp. 2nd Lieut. vice McBean (k) 14/9:
3rd L.H. Train:- Lieut. E.W. Murray to be captain 4/8/15 Capt. C.W. Robinson appd. to command the [indecipherable]
1915 5th Oct.
vice Temp. Major S.C. Gibbs transferred to 2nd A. Divn. 4/8:
G.O.C. Divn. (Br. General Chauvel, Tempy.) inspected lines and trenches which were to his satisfaction. 9th L.H. 2w - 10th L.H. 1w.
Visited lines of 2nd L.H. Bde. on extreme right (nearest Gabe Tepe) and spent all day inspecting trenches, Galleries, defences, etc. There has been a lot of work done lines in good order During my absence G.O.C. Army Corps Gen. Birdwood visited my area, and was very pleased with condition and work done: 8th L.H. 1w: 9th 1w: 10th 1w.
Two French 75s furiously bombarded trenches and bivouacs some 40 shells in an hour: Major J.B. Scott who has been with his Regt. 10th L.H. - since the beginning was blown to pieces, also 2w of 10th L.H.
Recd. news of war with Bulgaria Moved 10th L.H. bivouacs from previous area. Buried Major Scott about 300 yds. E of No. 3 outpost. Severe gale and wind at 8 p.m. which continued all night first rain for months: German Taube across our lines from activity in their guns, it appears as if the Turks were replenished in guns and amn.
Genl. Godley inspected Trenches and was very pleased For the first time continuous communication trench along entire perimeter of the Divl. Defence Area:- Sent large party to Beach to collect timber from some ships which have broken up and washed ashore: Two bridges now complete. 9th L.H. 2w with long range bombs across Dere. Visited Ordnance Dump, the Field Ambulance and sick and took Major Pinnell (G.C.O.) thro trenches --
1915 10th Oct.
For acts of gallantry and devotion to duty, the following honors awarded to - No. 115 Sergt. W.J. Henderson, No. 313 Lt. C.H.N. MacNee, No. 981 Tpr. T.B. Stanley all of 10th L.H. and 913 Pte. G.S. Peel, and Pte. A.J. Vines, 3rd L.H. Fd. Ambce.
[In right margin] D.RO. 689 List No. 2 A.& NZ.AC. orders 9/10/15
Appts. and Promotions:- Be Lieut. Colonel J.M. Antill C.B. to be Colonel (temporarily) and to command (temporarily) vice Brig. General F.G. Hughes
D.D.[?] invalided Dated Oct. 8th, 1915
[In right margin] 9/10/15
Submitted names of Capt. Kidd 10th L.H., Sergt. Linacre, Corporal J. Fryday, Sergt. W. Wilson, 9th L.H. and Tr. C.B. Richards of 10th L.H. for special mention -- good work in scouting, etc: all the above have done conspicuously well and have gained considerable information of enemy night reconnaissance Sergt. Wilson was wounded in one of these encounters - a week ago:
[In right margin] B.M. 1/282
The usual shelling of trenches and bivouacs about 50 coming from 971 and the narrows Enemys daily aero reconnaissance goes on and so far none have been brought down There are no anti-aircraft guns, except for a few improvised M.Gs. which have had no effect.
Now being visited by 5 Howitzers from the E which are accurate but effects unobservable to E on account of our being out of sight in Deres. A 5 dropped in BHQ and 5 trenches. A long range some 700 yds. trench Mortar also becoming a nuisance -- we have nothing of the kind:- Patrols 300 yds. to Sazzli Reit Dere nightly: So far have not succeeded in ambushing any of enemys:- Our constant M.G. single firing and Rifle practice from Loopholes has tamed the Enemy lately Especially in Snipers Nest, which has been a veritable hornets nest since the landing. - From Table Top and Antills lookout fire can be brought in
[Continued on page 31]
[Sketch map looking towards Chunuk Bair]
Rough sketch showing relative positions from Table Top looking east
Aug 8th to Oct 8th 1915
JM Antill Col.
Comg. 3 L.H. Bgde
Daily State Oct. 11th 1915
Brig. H.Qrs. Effective Stgh. Off. 5; Ors 14; Total 19
Killed Off. nil; OR nil
Wounded Off. 1; OR. 1
Sick Off. 1; OR 22
Trans - nil
Signal Troop. Effective Stgh. Off. nil; Ors 15; Total 15
Killed Off. nil; OR nil
Wounded Off. 1; OR. nil
Sick Off. nil; OR 20
Trans - nil
8th L.H. Regt.. Effective Stgh. Off. 8; Ors 124; Total 132
Killed Off. 16; OR 187
Wounded Off. 4; OR. 128
Sick Off. 11; OR 250
Trans - 5
9th L.H. Regt. Effective Stgh. Off. 15; Ors 302; Total 317
Killed Off. 6; OR 54
Wounded Off. 3; OR. 150
Sick Off. 13; OR 330
Trans - 6
10th L.H. Regt. Effective Stgh. Off. 11; Ors 203; Total 214
Killed Off. 12; OR 101
Wounded Off. 13; OR. 162
Sick Off. 9; OR 259
Trans - 8
Total. Effective Stgh. Off. 39; Ors 658; Total 697
Killed Off. 34; OR 342
Wounded Off. 22; OR. 441
Sick Off. 34; OR 881
Trans - 19
Total landed to date (including Re-inforcements) 2501
Killed, wounded, sick, missing, etc. 1804
effective Strength 697
Killed 376, Wounded 463 (now absent), Sick 915 (now absent), Missing 29 (Probably Killed), Transferred 19, On Duty Command 2, [Total] 1804
1915 12th Oct.
Reverse and enfilade and the beach is more or less safe and immune Forwarded recommendations for specially good work, Capt T. Kidd 10th L.H. and Tr. Rickards, [Richards] also Sergt. Linacre and Corpl. Friday [Fryday] and Sergt. Wilson 9th L.H.
8th L.H. very weak and remains in Reserve, supplying fatigues sapping and other parties and general picket -- The conditions of Bde. is as regards health very low no rest no relief squadron cooking, compulsory boiling of water, extreme vigilance in hygiene and sanitation all are insisted on, and careful inspections made daily: But constitutions however strong have become impaired with 22 weeks trench work, excessive labour in never ceasing digging, etc. Diarrhoea and dysentry and enteric are daily depleting ranks.
The worst cases are taken to the 3 L.H. Field Ambulance for a few days, but the proportion of suitable food cannot be procured and there is absolutely no covering of any kind yet available. This would appear incredible after five months occupation, proximity of Egypt, and the fleet of empty ships available, but so it is, notwithstanding repeated representations, and this aspect seriously affecting our prospects must form the subject of after investigation.
This appears to be due [space] of co-ordination between Army and Naval Authorities, and want of business practicability on our Staff. It is curious that a saw or a hammer, wire, timber, a few nails, a forge, material for making kitchens, or cooking food are unprocurable and the men are knocking out for the want of common essentials. one gets tired of repeated requests for these things none available no idea when, etc. etc.
Our No. 7 M.G. knocked to smithereens and two men
1915 13th Oct.
by a 5 Howitzer to-day - several fell about, also large bombs from a long range - Very busy making cubicles and shelters nr fire trenches, but no cover to put on them Letter saying Gen. Hughes very ill at No. 17 H Alexandria Appears to be enteric as he has been away a month and still has a temperature. Lt. Col. Abbott 10th L.H. also sick, as are most of us C.O.R.E. inspected lines and was taken with pattern of cubicles.
4.5 Howitzer assisted by our 3 M. Guns bombarded and blew out enemys M. Gun of Battleship Hill: Lt. Col P.P. Abbott commanding 10th L.H., to Hospl. During bombardment enemy opened on us with artillery and M. Guns (1 man 9th L.H. wd.) but disclosed a M.G. which we will knock out to-morrow.
Complimentary A.C. Commander places on record good services of 595 Sergt. Wilson (wounded); 620 Sergt. F.J. Linacre; 431 Corpl. J. Fryday of 9th L.H.; 129 Tr. C.B. Rickards, 10th L.H. The latter with Tr. Murray Prior reconnoitred enemys positions night of the 12th and stayed out all day hidden collecting useful topographical information and bringing in two rifles.
8 men to Hospl. sick 10th L.H. 1k. very heavy shelling at intervals all day on our area, trenches and B.H.Q. but men were well under cover.
9th L.H. 1w: 10th L.H. 1w both from shelling which has now become regular. 8 men to Hospl. sick; 6 returned from F.A.:
5 to Hospl. 2 returned from F.A.; Major McLaurin 8th L.H., Lt. E.H. Wilson, 8th L.H.; 9th L.H. Lt. A.J.G. Hutchison returned to duty Informed by telegram from A.H.Q. Lt. Col. Maygar V.C. of 4th L.H. to command, (Temp.) (8th L.H.);
1915 17th Oct.
Major Nicholas (Temp L. Col) 10th L.H.; Major Baker D.S.O. Tempt. B. Major Lieut. H.V.H. Throssell of the 10th L.H. awarded the V.C. This was for fine work done on Hill 60
Gen. Godley inspected lines and trenches, in which work has been steadily and continuously progressing. The weather remains generally fine, but expect the N.E. and S.W. gales at any time A form of fever like influenza is very common not apparently dangerous, but weakening with all influenza symptoms and a temperature which is hard to reduce jaundice also becoming more prevalent 10 men to Hospital.
To Hospl. Lt. E.G. Wilson to Hospl jaundice and two others to Hospl.
To duty Lt. Hutchison and two others returned to duty; Lt. Hutchison to be B.M.G. Officer; Lt. Harper to 9th L.H. as M.G. Officer Tempy. Capt. K.A. MacKenzie from Bde. S.S. (Tempy) to duty with 9th L.H.; Lt. W.S.K. Hughes resumes duty as S.C. Instructions M. Gun unit to be made up to establishment Sergt. Rose transferred from 6th L.H. to 8th L.H. as M.G. Officer, Commn recommended.
Bomb instruction daily under Lt. Wordsworth for all officers and N.C.Os. in bomb instruction; water being purified before use by chloride of lime; Fuel now issued at 2lb. per man per diem; Capt. Follitt (A.M.C.) 9th L.H. and 5 men to Hospl; the situation has become dead and uninteresting. Fulcrum moved to Italy and Greece, Bulgaria now in and hostilities commence -- All our Fleet of cruisers and T.P.Ds. have vanished, and beyond the usual stereotyped number of shells nothing doing we reconnoitre Dongas between Rhodon
1915 20th Oct.
and Battle Ship all very quiet - Last nights patrol brought in 3 rifles and a pay book evidently belonging to men who were killed early in August (Wiltshire Regt.); an unexploded Turk bomb, curious pattern, thrown into lines long range 9 brass cylinder x 3 diameter with 3 half sticks of Curtiss and Harveys Dynamite at base unexploded Top blown off by percussion fuse; - only one found so far.
Sir Ian Hamilton C. in-C. handed over to Gen, Monro No doubt result of the horrible failure at Sufla, where 60000 men were held up by 3 Coys. Gendarmerie and some insignificant artillery opposition Had this force pushed on, Koja Chemin Tepe must have been turned on August 7th and 8th and the business here over It was awful to stand and watch this deliberate inactivity after what our troops had gone through to prepare it for them but the common opinion here is unanimous to the miserable physique of the Ks A. [Kitcheners Army?] sent to do this job Had they been put into the trenches nothing could have kept the A. and N. Zs. from being round by Anafarta by evening of the 7th August.
It now resolves itself into both armies sitting down and waiting developments elsewhere, but all are relieved at a change in Strategy which is no Strategy at all All the Staff theories were at fault we were assured N.E.K. [The Nek] was very lightly held recent prisoner now says we were expected and prepared for since 2 p.m. 6th August, and that the whole of these trenches and Chess Board and Baby were heavily held and full of M.Gs. that our piffling bombardment did no damage to their trenches and that we came on nicely for them The previous day, I pointed out to Gen. S.K. that the trenches were full; that they were also
[Cannot identify Gen S.K.]
[The action at The Nek is dealt with at length in Official History of Australia in the War of 1914-18, Vol 2. Chs. XVIII to XXV. See pages 631-2 for reference to Lt. Col. Antill]
1915 20th Oct.
full of M. Guns, and that the description of bombardment (so many shells) was worse than nothing (especially at night) as it was merely ringing the bell and telling the enemy we were coming. All these opinions were waived aside, but they were facts, and it now transpires that we could have poured in wave after wave with the same results. Unless prepared to pulverise irrespective of expenditure of shell, a promiscuous general shelling of impregnable trenches is worse than NIL and it is better to trust to an unprepared surprise attack in broad daylight; At dawn the enemy always Stands to Arms and he knows our ways and habits, which even yet are too orthodox and per F.S.Rs. [Field Service Regulations] --
All our successes have hitherto been from the unpreparedness of enemy, who was surprised completely at Suvla Bay but not followed up - These troops dug in for half a day with nothing in front of them hence the whole show was botched.
I am progressing well with cubicles of trenches for men to sleep in and rest when actually not on watch. We lose by having so many men and so few M.Gs. in trenches. Turk Ts are full of M.Gs. with most of men resting conveniently.
[Sketch of a typical pattern of support and fire trenches]
Showing useful type where men have to occupy self contained strength weak.
No two patterns of trenches are the same no one pattern is possible Accommodate Resting men near their firing positions Sqn. cook house handy Recesses here and there for everything. In Paradoss such as spare ammo., Bombs; Flares.
Label everything and every place name Roads and alleys.
Biscuit Box partitioned for various types of Bombs: They should be replenished and cleaned daily.
1915 21st Oct.
To Hospl. 4: 10 retd. from Hospl. (F.A.) Capt. Follitt 9th L.H. to Hospl. Capt. Evans reported in his place.
4 to Hospl. 2 men returned. Genl. Godley called B.H.Q. to see me I have been unwell for a week with a high Tempe, but am getting better.
4 to Hospl: 5 from F.A.: Genl. Chauvel and major Percival (G.S.O.) called.
9th L.H. 1 man wounded, 5 to Hospl. - 3 men returned -
Good work by patrols at night Sazli Beit Dere. Collected 4 rifles, a pay book belonging to a Wilts and found four corpses these of men of the latter Regt. who were lost on Aug. 7th. They died of starvation, having lost themselves within 300 yds. of our lines a few got back and reported their mates had become demented This was a party of about 20 who got isolated during the movements of Aug. 7th and later.
8th L.H. Lt. A.S. Clarke and 52 others. returned to duty Lt. A. Crawford and 6 others = 2o 58 other
9th L.H. 2nd Lt. E.M. Luxmore and 58 others. 34 to duty = 1o 92 other
10th L.H. Lt. L.C. Timnerley & 63 others Lt. Olden & 9o to duty = 2o 72 other
Signal Troop 4 others and 1 to duty - 5 other
B.H.Q. 1 man to duty - 1 other
[Total] 5o 228 other
After 2 months hard digging Kidds and Fishers Saps have been thrown out 100 feet and 60 feet tunnelled to face of cliff overlooking Sazli Beit Dere with blind lookouts and good sniping posts, thus making position safe from surprise - Two guns of position established for night work on Turk Trenches doing good work. Cubicles going well. 9th L.H. 1 to Hospl.
9th L.H. 2nd Lt. E.A. Matthews and 1 man to Hospl. 10th L.H. 1 to Hospl. Query from D.H.Q. asking if prefer to go away Mudros for a rest for a month as
1915 26th Oct.
a Bde. or in detachments. Conference with Brigr. 1st L.H. Bde. on matter. Heavy bombardment Turk guns.
General Godley (G.O.C. Div.) and Col. Rhodes inspected the Trenches The former said they were the best in the peninsular - One man killed by a shell in 9th L.H. support Trenches - In reply to query from D.H.Q. suggested that Brigade go away for rest intact, but did not want to go so long as required here -- Patrol in Sazli did not encounter Turks but came across more bodies of men killed recovering 2 Rifles and 2 discs
Recd. reply from Major Love and returned papers to DHQ repeating that his explanations were unsatisfactory and again recommending he be returned to Australia for reasons already reported upon - This officers work has not been satisfactory (10th L.H.) and in interests of Regt. do not consider his services be continued
Wrote D.H.Q. re Captain Robinson (Train) being taken away by 2nd An. Divn. against recommendation of Brigr. and without his knowledge or consent or without knowledge or concurrence of G.O.C. N.Z. and A.
Severe shelling 11 a.m. (general) by Turks no damage to this Section one man sniped in Mule Road to Beach.
Took Genl. Chauvels advice re Capt. Robinson above referred to - a most irregular proceeding - This is the second case Capt. Gibbs having been taken away in same way.
Telegram from Gen. Hughes, Cairo -- again referring to above matter re Robinson and Murray and again suggesting action, but it seems that promotions and transfers can and are dealt with in Egypt without any reference to Divns. or Brigades. It has come to notice that Lieuts. Thom and Fry 8th L.H. are Captains, no reference or approval this end -- Have therefore asked
[Continued on page 40]
Daily State 26th October.
B. H.Qrs. Effective Strength Offs. 5; O.R. 15; Total 20
Killed Offs. nil; O.R. nil
Wounded Offs. 2; Or. 1
Sick Offs. 1; O.R. 20
Trans. -- 1
Signal Troop. Effective Strength Offs. nil; O.R. 22 Total 22
Killed Offs. nil; O.R. nil
Wounded Offs. 1; Or. nil
Sick Offs. nil; O.R. 27
Trans - nil
8th L.H. Regt. Effective Strength Offs. 12; O.R. 174; Total 186
Killed Offs. 16; O.R. 187
Wounded Offs. 3; Or. 121
Sick Offs. 10; O.R. 244
Total - 586
9th L.H. Regt. Effective Strength Offs. 18; O.R. 387; Total 405
Killed Offs. 6; O.R. 54
Wounded Offs. 3; Or. 148
Sick Offs. 13; O.R. 303
Total - 550
10th L.H. Regt. Effective Strength Offs. 12; O.R. 273; Total 285
Killed Offs. 12; O.R. 102
Wounded Offs. 12; Or. 157
Sick Offs. 10; O.R. 257
Total Effective Strength Offs.47; O.R. 871; Total 918
Killed Offs. 34; O.R. 343
Wounded Offs. 20; Or. 427
Sick Offs. 34; O.R. 851
Total - 1758
Total landed to 25/10/15 - 2508
Re-enforcements to 25/10/15 170
Effective strength - 918
Killed 377, Wounded 447, Sick 885 (away 1332), Missing 29, Transferred. 20, On command 2
1915 29th Oct.
for action to be taken thro Army Corps.
8th L.H. 1 to Hosp.: 9th L.H. 3 to Hosp: 10th L.H. 2 to Hosp.: I transferred from 11th A.S.C. to 8th L.H.
8th L.H. 4 to hosp: 10th L.H. 1 to hosp. Inspected and allotted positions in Kidds & Fishers saps for machine guns and mortar This should make an attack by enemy on our front a most costly, if not impossible task; these guns command all approaches from Sazli Dere with enfilade and direct fire.
[Sketch of Sazli Dere trenches]
During heavy weather last night a store boat ashore near Fishermans Hut and a T.B.D. at Suvla Bay. Enemy shelled these from Chunuk Bair and one shell premature burst over us and killed 3 and wounded 6 of the 8th L.H. and 1 of the 9th L.H. - A lucky fluke, and an expensive shot for us Major Baker B.M. sick result of wound in head suppurating, otherwise all quiet, save some good M.G. work from Table Top on exposed Turks Top on Majors Gully Killed several before they had time to take cover - Our hidden positions are giving Turk a worrying time as with 3 M.gs. we bag some every day Aeroplanes vainly try to locate,
1915 1st Nov.
but I have 2 anticraft guns on Table Top which keep them off.
Major Baker (B.M.) evacuated H. and 1 man B.H.Q. 8th L.H. 2nd Lt. R.H. Brown and 2 others to H.
8th 2 man; 9th 3, 10th L.H. 1 = 6 to H. G.O.C. Army Corps thro lines
9th 2; 10th L.H. 1 = 3 to Hosp: G.O.C. approved of my readjustment of frontage position (No. 2) Post to be taken over by N.Z. Infy. Bde. Visited Anzac saw Capt. Griffiths. M.C.H. Secy. re certain details.
8th L.H. 2 men, 9th L.H. 3, 10th L.H. 1 6 men to Hospital - General health of Bde. only fair, the long and continued strain telling a good deal of Jaundice appearing, dysentry, enteric, influenza and some diptheria Troops at Mudros reported to be having a bad time from above maladies Matters generally quiet, nothing doing Still busy preparing shelters tunnelling and strengthening Defences Several alternative positions for M.Guns; also preparing for 2 in Kidds and 1 in Fishers tunnels.
8th L.H. 2, 9th L.H. 2, 10th L.H. 2 = 6 to Hospital: McLaurin and 1 man to Egypt to take over cmmd. of Bde. Details Heliopolis, vice Major Daley to return to Regt.: issued major McL with his fully written instructions, with a view of roping in the many strays who should have returned (see state) 4th H.Q. - 5
How. Battery shelled Snipers Nest 7 direct hits destroyed improved works and must have accounted for a fair number of Turks.
Visited D.H.Q. with improved model for sliding Loop-holed plate see sketch Genl. Godley pleased with the design which Capt. Vyvian, R.N. took away to make a steel pattern of for trial: model should be very serviceable: No 4 Battery again shelled N.E.K.
[Capt. Vyvian was beachmaster at Anzac on 25th April and later became Air Vice Marshall, Sir A.V. Vyvian, RAF]
1915 7th Nov.
4 direct hits Took Capt. Vyvian round Trenches He is senior officer of Local Navy and reports a mon-
[Sketch of sliding loop-holed plate]
itor now arrived capable of shelling the Straits at 22,500 yards. His cruiser guns shell Turkish positions on Chunuk Bair and Kaja Dere daily with good results T.P.D. which went ashore a wreck at Suvla with broken back --
Weather still very good generally, but nothing doing Hear K. of K. [Kitchener] had left War Office for good and for the front. Gen. Monro in Egypt Capt. Farr S.C. 1st Lt. Bde. Tempy. appd. B.M. vice Major Baker -
8th L.H. 1: 9th LH. 1: = 2 to Hosp.- C.R.A. Br. Gen. Johnstone visited Bde. area re co-operation by Artillery D Sec. 69th How. Battery detailed for this Bde. -- Arranged to lay direct phone line to Battery from B.H.Q.: G.O.C. Divn. inspected Lines in area. Captain Farr (Tempy. B.M.) vice Major Baker reported all very quiet one off our M.Gs. (9th) L.H.) knocked out by a sniper.
All normal: 13 officers and 257 others comprising 1/3 of the Brigade earliest arrivals here, proceeded to Mudros for one months rest Capt. Kidd 10th L.H. in command. Capt. Kidd furnished with written instructions for training (BM 444): on 9th inst.
8th L.H. 1, 9th L.H. 3. 10th L.H. 1 man 5 to Hospl. To-day 8th L.H. 3, 9th L.H. 4, 10th L.H. 2 = 9 to Hospl.: N.Z.M.1 took over from 150 yds E of Antills Lookout to
[In right margin] B.M. 444/447
1915 10th Nov.
Destroyer Hill Heavy shelling from 2 Batteries on D.H.Q. 4 pm.
Accompanied Genl. Johnston NZMI. over trenches and lines handed over, subsequently Genl. Smyth, V.C. also. Genl. Godley (G.O.C.) called at B.H.Q. Letter from Genl. Hughes, saying he was being sent to Australia for 6 months after enteric. Wrote him re Brigade Information that Major Love struck off strength. A lot of honors in orders for Austn. Troops Genl. Russell a K.C.M.G. etc. Busy tunnel and bivouac digging
5 men to Hospl: - 1 of 10th L.H. wd.
Reinforcements 8th L.H. 26 and 3 sick from base 9th L.H. 12 and 4 wounded and 3 sick from base 10th L.H., 25, i wounded and 9 sick returned = 83
Met Lord Kitchener who desired the Brigade to be informed that he had been instructed by the King to express his admiration of their splendid work
Went on Cruiser Endymion with Capt. Vyvian shell Battleship Hill from cruiser with excellent results enfilading trenches.
[In right margin] Also of Bde.Train Lt. Fabile and 25 others from Cairo.
4 men sick to Hospl. remained on Ship.
Unable to land weather, a gale some iron and timber issued for covering at Sephaloc
Returned to B.H.Q.: Thro lines with Col. Meredith Large mail from Australia Digging in hard
Submitted names for 3 Trench Honors Major McLaurin 8th L.H.: Lieut. MacDonald 9th L.H. and Sergt. Hampshire, No. 193 of 10th L.H.: The names also of Capt. Kidd of the 10th and Capt. Bentley of same Regt were also favourably considered Letter from Gen Hughes and telegram saying he was sailing for England - A wild and galy day with some rain much discomfort without proper covering for men;
[In right margin] S.C. 64
1915 17th Nov.
Turks very jumpy at night. Authority to strike Capt. Greenwood off strength he has been absent for months and doing duty at Alexandria in Records, stopping promotion: General Russell called and inspected lines and said they were the best trenches he had seen in the Peninsula: Shelled Snipers Nest 69th Battery 7 good hits 20 rounds Sniping has been bad from there and Battleship the last few days will shell latter tomorrow Ascertained the Cruiser Endymion knocked out a M. Gun on 13th. Capt. Shannon and 6 to Hospl.
Shelled Chicken Coop in morning, blowing out of a M.G. and Nek Also shelled NEK at 10p.m. and must have got good results as Turks were repairing damage of morning 3 to Hospl.
2 men wd. to Hospital: - A number of officers from N.Z.M.R.Bde. and Infy. Bde. including C.Os. were sent to visit my lines by G.O.C. with view of adopting the system adopted in regard to plan of trenches, supports, shelter trenches, etc. Monitors and cruiser heavily bombarded Straits over the Narrows 14 Naval Guns range 22,500 yds. - Weather cold Writing G.O.C. about abnormal no. of absentees.
Turks on Snipers Nest very persistent notwithstanding their works are constantly demolished and their men shot in reverse from Antills Lookout and Table Top by our M.Gs. and snipers - My opinion is, that it is used as a lookout for the beach movements, and should be blotted out. G.O.C. however is not keen on our taking it, as we could not hold it This is true, but we could clear up the situation and spoil it for their future occupancy - Called in G.O.C. and pointed out that some action should be taken in
1915 21st Nov.
regard to the abnormal number of men away, and who never get back The drift continues, and once men get away it is, in the majority of cases, the last of them There are 58 officers and 1361 others of this Bde. away sick and wounded, a large number dating back to June and July Have written officially to him giving figures and suggesting appt. of Senior Officer of Local experience and sympathy be appointed in England to collect, board return or discharge these - G.O.C. expressed himself in entire agreement and promised to endorse my recommendation -
G.O.C. inspected our Trenches Brigs. with him re combined action Gen. Russell Col. Braithwaite and C.Os. N.Z. Regiments. Capt. Hutchison Bde. M.G. Officer evacuated enteric very raw and cold. Funk holes (25 ft. deep) progressing right through lines and trenches --- otherwise than usual shape
Turks quiet a little news from abroad -- All our Xmas mails sunk in a lighter.
Lt. Tunbridge to Hospl. 5 men to Tramway Corps. and one (Cupitt 9th L.H.) to A.H.Q. for topographical work Report from Capt. Kidd, Mudros Rest party States more sickness since arriving than in Trenches bearing out my representation unwise to send men weak and susceptible to disease to a sick base - Much Jaundice, and typhoid increasing, also occasional diphtheria
Turk (Armenian Christian) surrendered to us on 21st inst. from Battle Ship Hill and has give us excellent information 3 Divs. (200,000) Turks have gone to assist Bulgaria from here Turks very dissatisfied: no blankets and poor food They were for some time, expecting substantial help from Germany with men, guns and ammunition, which have not arrived - Showed us a number of their positions It appears
1915 23rd Nov.
they are only comparatively lightly held Shelled 2 M.G. Positions but results poor selected position Table Top for an 18 Pr. which should easily be able to knock Snipers Nest out
CRA Gen. Johnston called and we conferred re-Artillery co-operation Phone connections rotten same all through No wire, bad, obsolete Phones and commutators cannot get Mark III. and we are using phones condemned in Australia before the war we cannot get others This means disaster in an attack, but no one appears to bother Requisions have been in and renewed for 9 months - New Regulations out, by which Officers and N.C.Os. absent 3 months wounded or sick, may be placed on supernumerary list and their places permanently filled - On return, liable to be posted to any unit of [or] arm of service to which he belongs a good and much needed regulation
[In right margin] A.O. 40. 41 22nd Nov/15
Instructions issued for 48 hours general silence from 8 p.m. No fire rifle or artillery to try and induce enemy to attack.
Nothing doing Enemy for first time shelled Sazli Dere getting mule convoys carrying water and rations Several casualties These are visible from Chunuk Bair and Snipers Nest. General Russell called re Divisl. Canteen This Brigade concurred scheme is to get a good firm to establish canteen (dry) at Anzac we to guarantee half losses by sea Bond of £500 by Contractor In the event of sudden move we to take over stock to value of £1000 landed: Stores to be carried free of cost to Contractor
I and the four other Brigadiers (Russell, Monash, Meredith and Braithwaite) N.Z.M.R., 4th Infy. Bde., 1st L.H. Bde., N.Z.M.I. Bde. sent for Gen. Godley informed that he had been appointed to command Army
1915 26th Nov.
Corps vice Birdwood to command Mediterranean Forces vice Sir Ian Hamilton, recalled Gen. Russell to cmd. N.Z. & A. Divn. - Brought under Divn. rotten condition of our obsolete mark II phones These were condemned before we left Australia, unable to get others since He promised to move in the matter - He also approved Canteen suggestions Mule Convoy again heavily shelled several casualties obliged to order convoy to wait till dark Squally and raining, water and rations short 15 men to Hospl: 1 wd. 8th L.H.
Turks strafing alround, evidently mystified at our silence. One Turk got right up to our lines and threw a bomb Period of silence extended to 2400 27th inst. Letter from Gen. Hughes, S.S.Aquitania at Mudros on way to England wire him, all well Conference with C.Os. re defence wire entanglements, etc.
Official photographer from A.H. Qrs. sent to take photos of points in this post; Mules heavily Strafed about 20 being killed, also some casualties in supply convoy Commenced Snowing near midnight
The whole Peninsula 3 deep in snow great difficulties in getting up supplies 70 men extra all night employed Went and saw Div. G.O.C. re the details asked for to work on saps, etc. on the beach pointed out that to conform to these requisitions involved the absolute unsafety of Line of Defence - A bad day under uncomfortable circumstances - Anticipate most serious difficulties if snow continues re supply fuel covering, etc. A large number of men yet uncovered been asking for iron for months - no reason apparent why it should not have been issued long ago.
1915 29th Nov.
Snow all over the place - very uncomfortable for the men, who have only one suit of uniform one pair of boots, and many without cover Two men shot by looking over parapets white background Trenches slushy and intensely cold -
Interregnum of 3 days silence cease and normal conditions again The Turks in the meantime have become Saucy It is intended to open on the trenches opposite with 2 Batteries allotted to this Section and blow out 2 M. Guns to-day - My Saps and Tunnels into bluffs are now complete with surprise M.G. emplacements and lookouts, so that, if an attack is made, the enemy will be raked and enfiladed Wire entanglements also complete round this section New position being placed near Antills Lookout
It is intended as announced by Gen. Godley to reduce by one half, the local garrisons which without Suvla amount in (N.Z. & A. Divns) to about 42,000. This apparently on account of difficulty in regard to rations and supplies But if a serious attack is made questioned if so thin a line can hold It is also questionable if these weather conditions continue, if we can remain at all, as no supplies have been landed for 3 days and there is about 3 weeks supply only in hand
The gales from the S.W. and snow from N.E. may be expected to occur from this on, and it is quite on the cards, we may be stranded without supplies or amm. or Reinforcements Imbros is 14 miles away and it is there a Divn. Rest Camp is to be formed Br. General F.G. Hughes who has been invalided from this Brigade since Sept. 20th is to be the Commandant and Colonel Antill continues as Brigadier of this Brigade.
A theft of rum took place on night of 28th (12 jars) 4 men in arrest awaiting trial by F.G.C.M.
Daily State 27th November. 1915
Brig. H.Qrs. At Mudros Off. nil; O.R. 3
Effective Sth. Off. 4; O.R. 14; Total 18
Killed Off. nil; O.R nil
Wounded Off. 1; OR. 1
Sick Off. 2; OR 21
On Duty - nil
Trans - 1
Signal Tp. At Mudros Off. nil; O.R. 5
Effective Sth. Off. nil; Ors 19; Total 19
Killed Off. nil; OR nil
Wounded Off. 1; OR. nil
Sick Off. nil; OR 26
On Duty - nil
Trans - nil
8th L.H. At Mudros Off. 1; O.R. 50
Effective Sth. Off. 8; Ors 125; Total 133
Killed Off. 16; OR 192
Wounded Off. 3; OR. 123
Sick Off. 13; OR 258
On Duty - 4
Trans - 6
9th L.H. At Mudros - Off. 6 O.R. 116
Effective Sth. Off. 11; Ors 270; Total 281
Killed Off. 6; OR 57
Wounded Off. 3; OR. 145
Sick Off. 15; OR 332
On Duty - 1
Trans - 6
10th L.H. At Mudros - Off. 5 O.R. 96
Effective Sth. Off. 9; Ors 205; Total 214
Killed Off. 12; OR 111
Wounded Off. 12; OR. 142
Sick Off. 9; OR 259
On Duty - nil
Trans - 8
Total landed to date - 2767
Effective strength 665
Rest at Mudros - 282
Killed 394, Away wounded 431, Away sick 940 (Away 1371), Missing 29, , On command 5, Transferred. 21
J.M. Antill Col.
O.C. 3rd L.H. Bde.
1915 30th Nov.
and a Court of Inquiry (Lt. Col. Nicholas of 10th LH) President to try and get at the bottom of it This is the first breach of discipline since the Brigade came to Anzac The Provost Sergt. (Lutze) who was set to work [look] into the case is also in arrest awaiting trial for drunkenness on Active Service
Diarrhoea and dysentry have disappeared with the cold snap and death of flies Frost bite must be guarded against and special precautions and instructions are being issued greasing of the feet is the best remedy
All quiet at Helles and altogether it looks as if we had to wait here until other forces in other Zones settled matters.
Col. Antill is now the only officer of the Brigade who has remained throughout, without going sick, or going away, and there are not more than some 130 men of 1900 landed who have seen it out Our 3rd L.H.F.A. ordered to Mudros to-day by Army Corps
Diary to 3rd Echelon Alexandria to-day by Registered Post
J.M. Antill, (Col.) C.O. 3rd L.H.Bde.
1915 1st Dec.
Rhododendron Spur G.O.C. called and discussed thinning line of defence. Meeting of C.Os. after and explained the method to be adopted. i.e. by holding fire trench with outpost groups, men in supports and pushing out strong night patrols in Dere to prevent surprise.
Lt. Grant to Mudros vice Capt. Kidd (invalided) to command Bde. rest details Fired Snipers Nest with 69th Battery results fair Rev. Goodman joined C of Inquiry on stolen rum Lt. Col Nicholas president. F.G. Courtmartialled for drunkenness to sit to-morrow. Major Aldennan president. Snow disappearing. Lt. Mckellar reported to 10th L.H. two working parties of one Officer and 50 others to make road near beach for mules
Major Todd D.S.O. returned to duty F.G.C.M. [Field General Court Martial] sitting usual strafing from Chunuk Bair on our mules Sanders back from Mudros canteen stores Capt. Bayley 9th L.H. to Imbros re canteen S.
G.O.C. Army Corps and G.O.C. Divn. inspected Area and trenches all very good: owing to loss of barges in late heavy weather reduction in some rations: Informed by G.O.C. that 250 of the 9th A. Corps were drowned and some 6,000 evacuated sick, result of snow This in about a week Special instructions issued re precautions against cold
Major Todd took over Comd. of 10th L.H. vice Lt. Col. Nicholas who has done most excellent work while in command. A sound, firm and capable officer. 17th Field Siege Battery shelled Snipers Nest and completely shambled it. splendid shooting, fully a dozen direct hits H.E. must have been heavy casualties nothing could have lived in it. This had been a thorn in our side since Troops landed, as an observation and sniping point.
1915 4th Dec.
It is a salient which cuts into our defence, but we could never hold it as it is dominated from Turk positions on Battleship Hill and Chunuk Bair. -
The position appears an extraordinary one for our enemy to be allowed to hold it is 400 yds. S. of Antills Lookout and completely enfiladed and taken in rear by our fire But by digging in deep trenches and caves it has been persistently held by the Turks for over six months. Yesterday was its worst day and it was made untenable for a time Our M.Gs. play on it continuously from Table Top and Tolmans Post and Robertsons Sap by day, and from two posts at night
Genls. Birdwood, Godley and Russell (A.C.: Div. C.: & A.C. Comr.) inspected area and trenches Deepening and traversing trenches
A good deal of artillery fire from Turks denoting fresh supplies of ammunition and guns the last week: 2nd Lt. Latham signals, reported Bde. Police (7) reported to N.Z. and A. Divn.
Major Nicholas evacuated to have bullet taken out of his knee received in May at Quinns.
All C.Os. and self inspected with C.R.A. Gen. Johnston all guns and batteries between Anzac and Suvla, some 52 in all. 17th Seige Battery fired again at Snipers Nest, with fine results 69th Battery at Battle Ship Hill: approval from Divn. for amended Lieut. and Q.M. Sproat to Hospl.
Scheme of defence by which line is held more lightly i.e. by a series of outposts with supports close in rear, resting instead of a heavily condensed line of men our line not being close to enemy with a deep Dere and very rough intervening ground it would be most difficult to surprise us, and under new scheme men will be able to get a fair amount of rest Lts. 2nd. Mac-
1915 8th Dec.
Pherson (8th); A.D. Palmer (9th); S.A. Ayliffe of 9th Reinforcement officers, reported yesterday, the reinforcements brought by them having been left at Mudros -
Bde. Police taken away and attached to Divn. This is most inconvenient and leaves the Bde. and area absolutely without supervision again shelled Snipers Nest with 17tth Seige Battery with excellent results.
Three cruisers and two monitors heavily bombarded Turks position apparently about Gaba Tepe, probably guns at Olive Grove; lasted for two hours roughly over 1000 shells H.E. Parade of bde. for instruction in use of new type of gas helmet Lecture after by me, and scheme of defence explained to all ranks turned out Bde. at midnight unsatisfactory.
Lecture and address of yesterday repeated also upon the results of last nights turn out explained fully what should be done on alarm or pending attack Promulgation of sentences of F.G.C.M. on Provost Sergt. and two men of 9th L.H. for drunkenness on duty, read out to assembled Parade Provost Sergt. reduced to ranks and two men 91 days F.d. Inpt. No. 2;
weather continues fine and pleasant. Special Instructions to C.Os. re necessity of getting moving on last nights imperfections.
Indications point to evacuation No stores being landed; mules artillery and hospitals being cleared my appn. to visit Mudros to inspect rest details to be suspended etc. 69th (D) Battery fired on Snipers Nest last night:
Names of members of Bde. submitted to date for decorations or recognition as follows:-
New Years Honor Gazette
8th L.H. Capt. M.B. Higgins: No. 477 Segt. N. Worrall: No. 353 Sergt. A.H. Currington Major W.H. Scott: No 413. Corpl. J. Fryday No. 614 Trpr. J. Pennycuick.
1915 12th Dec.
10th L.H. Major C.L. Nicholas: No. 1 (R.S.M.) J.W. Everington No. 98 (S.S.M.) M.B. McKenzie
Conference at Div. H. Qrs. with G.O.C. Divn.
[In right margin] Subject movement of rest parties
10th L.H. left Anzac under Col. T.J. Todd at 1900 for rest camp at Imbros. Shelling by Turks of Apex. New Dispositions.
Reply to Turkish artillery by shelling of Snipers Nest by our batteries. New dispositions of the defence satisfactory, though somewhat weaker. The whole line divided by 8th and 9th L.H. proportionately to their strengths. 8th L.H. from Destroyer Hill (exclus) to Robinsons Sap (Inclus) 9th L.H. from Robinsons Sap to appoint 150x E. of the island.
Brigadier informed of evacuation.
No unusual activity during the day. Bombing more frequent on Walkers during the night.
Meeting of all Brigadiers with G.O.C. at Div. H.Qrs. The method of evacuation decide on, that is to be done in two nights, there being three parties on each night. The strength of troops for each Brigade to be left until these two nights was decided. All other men to be sent away prior to the first night. Bgdr. visited A. & N.Z.A. Corps H. Qrs. Brigadier appointed A. Corps embarkation Officer for the evacuation of the Anzac position
A quiet day throughout the Anzac position. The N.Z. & A. Divn. having orders not to indulge in much sniping, so as to let things become quiet
Fire of the North Shore, Store dump at 0200 a large blaze showing a great reflection. Fire burnt throughout the day, and smouldered until 1800. Conference of all Brigadiers with G.O.C.N.Z. & A. Div. at Div. H. Qrs.
All officers of the Brigade brought to Bde. H. Qrs. when the evacuation order was dictated to all, and copies taken by unit Representatives.
1915 18th Dec.
Rehearsal of Bde. withdrawal was held in the afternoon. 3rd L.H. Bde. had only one party to go on the first night, that was C party which left at 2330. Major Parsons 9th L.H. was in charge of this party.
Throughout the day all material that it was not possible to move was buried or broken. All Ammn. was buried in the tunnels, and 10 to 15 feet of earth thrown over it. Bombs were carried away as far as possible, the remainder being buried after submerging in water. Loop-hole plates were buried. Nothing of importance was left in the area.
During the afternoon the Turks used new shells on our trenches. They were H.E. shells of the Howitzer type and were the largest fired since the landing of the Bde. They were over 9 diameter. heavy shelling of Hill 60 which was held by the N.Z.M.R. Bde.
Though the shelling was severe, no casualties were sustained.
2nd night of the evacuation A and B parties leading at 1800 and 2300 respectively.
C parties left Anzac at 0250. The Bde. section was held until 0215. Last parties left beach at 0335. Walkers Ridge blown up as the last boats were about to leave. The B. and C. parties proceeded to Mudros and transhipped on the T.S. Hororata at 1200: Col. Antill appointed by Army Corps to remain till the last and superintended the whole of the embarkation of Anzac Troops: B. and C parties stopped the night aboard this ship under orders to tranship to another transport.
B. and C. parties second night transhipped on to the T.S. Anchises. Reported to G.O.C. no casualties and especially mentioned Capt. Stavely [Staveley] R.N. PTO, and Major Bruce M.L.O. for their excellent work during embarkation operations.
1915 21st Dec.
A number of troopships were to leave at 1730, with a convoy, with the Anchises, as flagship. While moving from the anchorage to the entrance of Mudros harbour, the troopship Arbasia [Abbassieh?] collided with the Anchises. The remainder of transports proceeded to sea, the Anchises anchoring for the night (no damage to the ship).
The troopship Anchises left Mudros at 0900 for Alexandria
23rd, 24th Dec.
B. and C. parties on board troopship Anchises.
Xmas Day B. and C. parties arrived at Alexandria at 0700 and disembarked at 1500. B. and C. parties proceeded to Heliopolis, Cairo by train at 1800 going into Bde Camp at the racecourse.
All the Bde. in camp with the exception of A party
2nd night. Re-organisation.
Re-organisation: Indents on Ordnance for clothing etc. as men had practically more than they stood up in.
Re-organisation. A party 2nd night joined the Bde at Heliopolis. Whole Brigade now in from Anzac without a single casualty.
Re-organisation: The Bde. is short a great deal especially Horses and Light Horse Equipment. Boards held on stores and indents complete.
Medical officers report health of Bde. of men returned good and few cases only required spell before starting training. Decided to start from beginning of L.H. Training on Jany. 3rd.
Exercise parades only.
[In right margin]
Command:- Col. J.M.Antill C.B. Commd. 3rd A.L.H. Bde
vice Gen. Hughes (invalided 1.1.16)
Col. J.M. Antill C.B. Promoted General 1.1.16 [Temp. Brig. General]
A.I.F. List 19
1st Jan. 1916
New Years day Start the year 1916 with very few old officers or senior officers but plenty of reinforcements. Old men are to be used as neucleus for troops and squadrons.
Church Parade. Heliopolis 1st parade of the whole Bde. Clothing required especially riding Breeches.
1916 2nd Jan.
Ordnance short same, likely to cause delay in refitting.
Training commenced. Mounted drill beginning with Troop Drill. Shortage of horses and saddlery makes it difficult. Parades small on this account.
Troop Drill. - Signals officers tested in riding that have arrived with reinforcements. All officers addressed by Brigadier ref. saluting and bearing.
Troop Drill and Musketry. Riding of reinforcements not up to standard of old Brigade: Riding tests necessary.
Troop Drill and Elementary Musketry. Riding tests commcd. many reinforcements will be reqd. for riding instruction. Ordnance not dealing with requisitions as Bde. are being equipped according to the order in which they will be required for service. 1st A.L.H. Bde to be dealt with urgently, therefore retarding re-fitting of 3rd L.H.B.
7th, 8th Jan.
Troop Drill Elementary Musketry and Riding tests continued - Lecture to all officers by B.M. on Leading of Mtd. Trps.
Church Parade and March Past No band It is decided to re-form the band. inspection by Bgdr. clothing still short.
Troop Drill continued. Owing to small number of horses necessary for different men to use horses in the morning and afternoon.
Troop extended work at slow pace. Preliminary Musketry A squadron of the Composite Regt. returned from the western frontier. Horses in poor condition. Bde gain [?] greatly in horses and saddlery. No transport arrived with same.
Troop work continued Horses of Composite Regt. will not be fit for work for 2 or 3 weeks. B Squadron returned.
1916 13th Jan.
Troop training and musketry continued. Horses of B Squadron Composite Regt. greatly help to fill shortage of horses in 10th L.H. Saddlery also helps as Ordnance very short of Bridles. No transport with the squadron except 1 waggon G.S. limbered
Squadron Drill commenced. Parades yet small especially 8th L.H. Re-organisation as regards personnel complete.
9th and 10th Regts. Lt. Col. Grant chosen to remain in command of the Reserve Regt. with all details of 11th Regt. to remain.
Church Parade. Band weak in numbers all new members General Hughes having returned from England attended parade.
Troop Drill extended Elementary Musketry. Work shows rapid progress and men earnest to obtain high standard. Reinforcements shape well Riding school for selected ones improving.
Troop Training Pace and Direction lecture, etc. to all officers Lecture on Prismatic Compass to all officers by B.M.
Troop Drill extended with dismounted action: Lecture on dismounted action by B.M. Riding school for officers showing good results. Sword drill for officers commenced.
Troop Drill dismounted action. Requisitions on Ordnance now being attended to. Horses of the 10th Regt. brought up to strength from Remount Depot.
Squadron Drill Mounted. Bde still short of bridles particularly Ordnance awaiting supplies. Parade of Machine Guns in Bde. Further horses received by 9th LH
Waggons, Harness and Saddlery overhauled.
Church Parade and March Past. Improvement in marching of Bde. also in clothing. Gen. Hughes present on Parade.
1916 24th Jan.
Squadron Drill - Close order. Riding school for officers inspected by Bgdr. Sword drill improving. Musketry course for reinforcements commenced.
Squadron Drill. Horses of Composite Regt. rapidly improved Musketry continued. General Birdwood inspected the camp at Heliopolis Racecourse and stated he was pleased with progress made.
Sports Meeting held to commemorate ANA day. A successful day.
Genls. Birdwood, Spens Hughes, Irving and Bates present to mark Australias Foundation Day General Sir John Maxwell and Sir Henry McMahon attended officially.
Squadron Drill: Extended Order with signals. All officers addressed by Bgdr. reference training.
Squadron Drill. Extended Order. Musketry of reinforcements continued. Showing results of good preliminary training for three weeks.
[In right margin]
Promotion Temp. Capt. W.SK. Hughes promoted Capt. 28 1.16
A.I.F. List 20
Vehicles overhauled and packed as in F.S.P.B. saddlery and harness parades.
Church Parade and March Past. Inspection held by Gen. Birdwood. Gens. Spens. Hughes, Irving present. G.O. Cmdg. Army Corps expressed appreciation of work and bearing of the Brigade Rising of Egyptian Army Reserve in Cairo. One Regiment called out. Composite Regt. Col. Maygar V.C. 8th L.H. taking command.
[In right margin]
No action necessary
Squadron Drill - close order - Musketry for reinforcements contd. 8th Regt. Completed 9th Regt. commenced. Lectures on rapid firing and fire effect. Brigade still short of Bridles.
1st, 2nd Feb.
Squadron Drill close order Musketry continued of reinfts. Squadron Drill extended order Dismounted action musketry reinforcements 9th L.H. completed, 10th L.H. Musketry commenced.
Squadron Drill extended order Musketry. description of ground.
1916 3rd Feb.
Fire Discipline Reqns. for clothing being completed more rapidly.
Regimental Drill. Parades small especially 8th L.H. which is short of horses and bridles.
Packing of vehicles. Cleaning of saddlery and harness.
Church Parade and March Past. General Irving attended.
Squadron Drill extended order with dismounted action Bde. moved out as a unit under G.O.C. and manouvred by signals. Remained out for midday meal.
Squadron Drill. Extended Order Dismounted action.
Squadron Drill. Extended Order Dismounted action. Silent drill - Musketry of reinforcements 10th L.H. completed.
Squadron Drill Led Horses manoeuvre. Brigade manoeuvred by signals by G.O.C. Musketry course Trained Soldiers 8th L.H. commenced.
Regimental Drill and Squadron Drill extended order with dismounted action.
Packing of vehicles - cleaning of Saddlery and Harness.
Church Parade and March Past. Improvement in marching noticed by G.O.C. Clothing of Bge. more complete on Inspection.
Squadron Training commenced. Squadron in the attack 8th Regt. musketry continued. Manoeuvre of Led Horses Musketry advanced training by Sqdn. Leaders.
Squadron Training - squadron in the attack - 8th L.H. musketry manoeuvre of Led Horses at all places.
Squadron Training. Squadron in the attack led horses - Orders definitely state re-organisation of 11th and 12th L.H. Regt. Lt. Col. Grant appointed command 11th L.H. Major Barlow appointed to command 2nd L.H.
Bde. left Heliopolis on Route March to the Barrage
Bde. returned to Heliopolis from the Barrage.
1916 19th Feb.
Packing of vehicles. Overhauling of Harness and saddlery after route march. Kit inspection for making up final requirements.
Church Parade and March Past. Major Barlow proceeded to take charge of 2nd L.H. Regt.
[This is the end of the 3rd L.H. Brigade War Diary entries written by Gen. Antill. The following entries are by another hand unsigned]
Brigade preparing to leave Heliopolis for Serapeum. Advance party under Capt. Dangar left to make arrangements for arrival of Brigade.
First Squadron of 8th L.H. entrained followed by remainder of Regt. L.H. Field Ambulc. moved out.
Hd. Qrs. 8th L.H. and 2 squadrons 9th L.H. entrained and despatched The Brigade train moving all baggage to station Regiments instructed to take10 per cent over plus in men.
Last of 9th L.H. and advance Squadron 10th moved out Wire received asking for Major Farrs services in connection with the Mounted Division. Regiments settling in at Serapeum.
Signal Troop Brigade train and Bde. Hd. Qrs. arrived at Serapeum completing the move of the Bde. no casualties amongst men or horses.
Camp situated between railway and Suez Canal, within Ό a mile of the latter; Hd. Qrs. on the canal bank. Regts. doing little more than exercise.
8th L.H. doing troop movements at the walk, sand making heavy going:
Major Scotts name (9th L.H.) sent forward for promotion to Lt. Col.
A.I.F. Orders d/29th February received with names of those mentioned in Gen. Sir Ian Hamilton despatch of Dec. 11th 1915 Published in B.O. d/3/3/16
Major Charley Supy List transferred to 3rd L.H. Bde. to command details at Heliopolis.
G.O.C. visited N.Z.M.R. lines Major Powles, B. Maj. pointed out training areas.
1916 4th March
Inspection of 9th L.H. by G.O.C. Lines clean, men comfortable.
Church Parade two Squadrons 10th L.H. under Lt. Col Todd D.S.O. took over the Reconne duties from N.Z.M.R. Squadrons, that Bde. taking over certain position of 2nd Divn. line.
Regts. settled down to training, all movements being done at the walk.
[In the right margin]
Major Nicholas 10th L.H. to 51st Battn. d/5/3/16
Received orders re taking over of that portion of front line at present held by first Division G.O.C. inspecting line with Gen. Chauvel.
One Sqdn. 10th L.H. took over Works 1 2 3 and 4 5 6 the following day.
Remaining two Sqdns. of 10th L.H. took over posts 7 8 9 - This Regiment being responsible for some six miles of front originally held by our Infy. Bde.
No. 3 Troop of 10th L.H. taking part in reconnaissance to locate aeroplane which failed to return; Recce cut short, pilot and observer returning on foot to 9th Corps;
9th L.H. took over that position of front line held by 2nd Infy. Bde.
[In right margin]
Capt. A. McAllister from 31st Battn. to 8th L.H. Lt. Wearne to be Capt. Capt. Worthington (V.C.) [?] to 8th Mob. O. Sectn.
Move of 8th L.H. and H.Q. postponed on account of shortage of water at Rail Head.
Regts on front line settling down
G.O.C. Met O.C. units at Rail Head to discuss matters in connection with holding front line.
G.O.C. took Gen. Godley to the left of line and inspected No. 9 Post
B. Major went round the right section of line orders received to move B.H.Q. and 8th L.H. (less 1 Squadn.) to Rail Head, the squadn. to Work 62.
No work could be carried out high wind blowing filling in trenches.
Trench work being carried out on front line.
1916 18th March
Capt. G.F.G. Weick promd. Major and seconded as Bde Major to 15th Infy. Bde.
Major W.P. Farr to be D.A.A. and Q.M.G. Anzac Mounted Division.
Capt. C.C. Dangar 13th Hussars to be Brigade Major
1/1st. Ayshire Battery moved to Rail Head on 17th inst also 1/1st. Lowland Mounted Bde. Ammunition Column.
Making arrangements for reconnaissance to Moiya Harab tomorrow. G.O.C. round right of line.
Brig. Gen. (G.H.Q.) selecting gun positions on front line Reconnaissance to Moiya Harab under Capt. Wearnes 8th L.H.
[In right margin]
Lt. Col. Arnott to Command 9th L.H. d/17/3/16
In wireless touch with above reconnaissance; work proceeding steadily on front line.
Reconnaissance returned at 0330, both men and horses stood the 80 miles in 37 hours well G.O.C. to Ismalia to confer with Gen. White re promotions and reinforcements coming to Serapeum.
Lt. Col. Downes appd. A.D.M.S. of Anzac Mtd. Divn. on 3rd L.H. Bde. train disbanding, Capt. Dunningham and 2nd Lt. Dickenson retained in Brigade.
Gen Birdwood visited the Brigade to say Good-bye on his leaving Egypt He inspected works 1 9 on front line.
Church Parade at Rail Head 10th L.H.
Fresh instructions received re new distribution of troops in No. 2 Section Bde. will be much scattered 1 Regt in outpost line of B sub-section and 1 in outpost line of A sub-section, the remainder at Rail Head.
Trench work on whole front going on very satisfactorily. Gen. Cox (Comdg. 4th Div.) and Staff visited Rail Head
Brigade Major visited left of front line; three weeks on No. 9 almost completed.
3rd Light Horse Brigade train disbanded, all horses and wagons being retained in the Mounted Division a number
1916 30th March
of men transferring to the new R.A. formations.
G.O.C. took Gen. Cox (Comdg. 4th Aust. Div.) and Gen. Chauvel round the right section of H sub-section.
Cleaning up lines inspection of lines by G.O.C. a great difference to when the B.M. Took over.
G.O.C. took Gen. Cox round the left of the front line - Orders issued for the new distribution on front line.
Redistribution on front line took place. 8th L.H. moved into B sub-section of No. 2 Section 10th L.H. to Rail Head 9th L.H. remaining on front line.
Regiments settling into new quarters. Signal Troop broken up and brought down to new establishment
G.O.C. to conference with G.O.C. 4th Australian Division a reconnaissance E to be carried out.
General Staff Officers visiting front line making of horse shelters in progress
Camel Transport escorted by Bikanir Camel Corps and 30 armed Lighthorsemen as drivers moved out to Wadi Um Muksheib to be picked up by reconnaissance moving out 11/4/16.
Column under Major Scott 9th L.H. moved out, Jifjafa being the objective men and horses well turned out all looking fit and hard.
Major Scotts Jifjafa Column
The object of the reconnaissance was mainly to destroy gyns erected over wells at Jifjafa, capture the post, and report generally on the country etc. in the vicinity. The whole enterprise was a complete success in every way.
Column moved out at 1400 making bivouac in Wadi Um Muksheib at 2230 travelling good, some 6 miles
ahead of front line.
Having picked up camel transport at above, the column moved on at 0730 to water, arriving 1120 At dusk moved to point 1340 arriving 0230
Under cover of a khanpseen [khamsin, a dust storm] Hill 1080 was reached and from this point, the attack was made The attack was a complete surprise, the enemy bolting to the hills, and after a sharp engagement surrendered Result, 6 enemy killed, 4 wounded, 29 captured, which included an Austrian engineer officer; our only casualty being Cpl. S.F. Monacham [Monaghan] (976) 8th L.H. Killed.
During attack our engineers destroyed gyns and a very up-to-date boring plant and all gear etc. of any value - The return journey was made without opposition During the whole operations, communication with Rail Head was maintained by wireless, which worked most satisfactorily, with the exception of 13th inst. when khampsan was at its height.
Congratulatory telegrams received from C in CE.E.F. Generals Godley, Cox, Chauvel. Major Scott decorated with D.S.O.
Composition of Column
Commanding Major W.H. Scott 9th L.H.
Staff Officer Capt. H.E. Wearne 8th L.H.
Staff Attache Capt. MacCaulay G.S.O. 3., Capt. Ayres.
9th L.H. 117 all ranks
8th L.H. - 12 all ranks
Wireless Secn 9 all ranks
Engineers 10 all ranks
R.F.C. 4 all ranks
A.M.C. 9 all ranks
A.S.C. 1 all ranks
Bikanir C.C. 25 all ranks
Guides & Intr. 3 all ranks
Camel T.C. 127 all ranks. (includes 30 L.H.)
Camels - 261
Jifjafa prisoners sent to Ismailia Church Parade -
Detailed in connection with Jifjafa Raid finally settled. Remainder of 3rd. L.H. Field Ambulance joined the Section
1916 17th April
at Rail Head
Corps Commander inspected Major Scotts Jifjafa party and expressed his great satisfaction.
[In right margin] Lt. Wilson E.H. 8th L.H. died in Hospl. Ismailia
Triple typhoid innoculation in the Bde. was commended. [commenced]
Training continued in intended work and protection men feeling the effects of being innoculated
Good Friday, voluntary Church Parade, remainder of day observed as a holiday.
[Bde Major to Tel-el-Kebir] to look into matters with Training Regt.
Enemy planes reported more active. Anzac Day treated as a holiday as far as possible
Patrol of one troop under Capt. Dunckley towards Moiya Habib to report on presence of enemy and water nothing seen Lt. [name not shown] with one troop escort to water convoy supporting
ordinary patrols sent out and regimental training continued.
Regimental Training and building of stables continued.
Church Parade. G.O.C. 4th Divn. inspected right of line redistribution of troops on front line.
G.O.C. inspected front line 9th L.H. concentrated at Railhead all horses being sent out from Railhead.
G.O.C. to Tel-el-Kebir to inspect training regiments and 11th L.H. test concentration of 9th L.H. at Hill 580 a good turn out
Permanent signalling stations (3) established ahead of front line. Front line inspected.
G.O.C. inspected left of line, arrangements made for moving 2nd Batts. up into front line
Corps Commander inspected left of line; intelligence indicates enemy troops and guns moving east.
1916 6th May
8th May, 9th May, 10th May
Training restricted on account of troops being in a semi state of readiness to move out A number being used for escort to convoy, mostly water.
C. in C. inspected left of line; quiet satisfied with all he saw.
Every effort being made to fill reserve supply tanks. (canvas) in the front line tanks leaking.
Pump at Railhead broke down all ranks on 1 gallon tank at 9th L.H. pumped full from canal.
Pump in use, water normal Church Parade.
Starting water and ration convoys off in the evening on account of the heat.
redistribution of front lines started, 13th Aust. L.H. Bde. taking over from 12th Inf. Bde. and 4th Pioneer Battn., the latter being relieved by the 49th Bn.
Water supply to Railhead short, and causing much distress Abnormally hot.
52nd Battn. relieved 46th Battn.
Convoys at night working well water short second watering for horses completed at midnight. 50th Battn. relieved the 45th Battn.
two 60-pounder guns came into position at N road 200 yds from turning water for horses at Div. Hd. Qrs.
11th L.H. arrived from Tel el Kebir yesterday, less 1 squadron left with horses
Brig. Gen. Glasgow assumed command of front line and Railhead during absence of G.O.C. 3rd. L.H. Bde.
Gen. Cox inspected 60-pounder gun positions, and Hebeita camp. Church Parade
Inspection of line by Staff of 53rd Divn. who are relieving 4th Divn.
Indian Camel C. moved from Railhead.
1916 24th May
Two Battns. of the 12th Infy. Brigade moved from Railhead to Staging Camp.
Ordinary Regimental work.
49th Bn. moved to Railhead and the 50th Bn. took over the whole of right of line.
52nd Bn. moved to Railhead together with H.Q. 13th Infy. Bde. 51st Bn. took over the whole of left of line - G.O.C. accompanied staff of 53rd Divn. round front line It is part of this Divn. that is taking over from 4th Div. on its proceeding overseas.
Brigade Church Parade During the previous week all ranks issued with helmets.
3 Regiments of 163rd Bde came into camp at Railhead to take over front line -
5th Norfolks took over the left of line.
5th Suffolks and 8th Hants taking over centre and right of line 51st Battn. to Railhead.
C. in C. and Gen. Godley inspected the lines of the Bde. and were very much impressed with all they saw Gen. Godley said good-bye to the officers of Bgde.
Right of line inspected by Gen. Ward cmdg. this sub-section.
Left of line inspected.
13th A. Inf. Bde. moved to Railhead. 60 Pounders Batty. to Railhead from front line. Church Parade: - Bde. Band lent to 13th Inf. for a Brigade Service, and during the day played the Bde. out of camp.
Very bad dust storms doing a considerable amount of damage to trenches
G.O.C. at conference 53rd Divn. Ismailia re Muksheib Column.
Mj. Cooke R.E. called to discuss details for above column Bde. Band going well enjoyed by all. Wet and dry canteen in full swing also Coffee Bar.
Inspection of front line (right) by G.O.C. and G.Os.C.
1916 7th June
of No. 2 Section and sub-section, with the object of cutting out the right, turning it back from No. 57 work if sanctioned this will relieve the 12-13 mile front considerably.
Final arrangements being made for the Muksheib Column The convoy of 900 camels together with men fighting units, with or without camel transport left the front line at midnight 9/10 under the escort of 1 squadn. 9th L.H. (Major McKenzie) and 10 Bikanir camels.
G.O.C. Selecting keeps in the centre section of the front line that form of defence being suggested but not altogether agreed upon by the G.O.C. or Gen. Ward. The Muksheib Column (composition of column attached) under Lt. Col. Todd, D.S.O moved out at 1400 from Railhead its object being to drain out the water in the cisterns and pools in the Wadi Um Muksheib; which turned out to be a bigger job than expected.
Column inspected by G.O.C. and Gen. Ward.
In touch with the column all day by wireless the report on the operations of the column attached and marked Z
At the last moment 13th Squdn. 10th L.H. developed a form of fever and had to remain behind, their place being taken by a squadron of the 9th L.H. turned out very expeditiously.
General Butler D.V.S. inspected the fever horses of 10th L.H. could arrive at nothing 11th L.H. dismounted Sqdn. returned from Tel el Kebir
A. & C. Batty. 273 Bde. R.F.A. marched in to B.H.
Column completed pumping the cisterns at head of Wadi and started on return journey, - C.R.A. came out to see G.O.C. re gun positions.
12 bombs dropped by hostile aircraft on Rail Head - no
1916 13th June
damage 3 casualties on Canal pieces picked up point to bombs being converted Mills
Convoy of 650 camels with half Sqadn. escort arrived in camp at 0300, remainder of column between 1600 and 1830 men tired but both men and horses fit operations a complete success
[Transcribed by Peter Mayo for the State Library of New South Wales]