Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales
Leonard V. Bartlett diary, 4 April 1915-31 December 1915
MLMSS 959/Item 1
Transcriber's note: Lieut. Bartlett, who was English born, enlisted in September 1914 and was a Signaller in the 4th Battalion, A.I.F. He embarked from Sydney on the Euripides on 20 October 1914. The diary commences on 4 April 1915 when he reaches Alexandria. He spends some time on Lemnos before returning to Alexandria and then proceeding to Gallipoli towards the end of May. His diary gives details of his various duties, the food available, the arrival of mail and lists names and addresses of some of his many correspondents. He is quite critical of conditions and the food. On 19 December his Battalion evacuate Anzac and Suvla and on the 24th embark on the Simla where they spend Christmas.]
Sat. 3 April 1915
We get our marchg. orders at last! Broke camp at 4 p.m. & marched to Cairo. I walked with my cycle. Left Cairo at 10.10 p.m. for Alexandria. Wrote to Ede & sent "Brothers" by Vachell.
Sun. 4 April 1915
Reached Alexandria at 4.30 a.m. and embarked in "S.S. Lake Michigan". The conditions are pretty thick, obtnd. blankets at last moment. No hammocks, last of Kit Bags. Left port at 11.30 p.m. for usual unknown port. This boat has been troopg. all the winter & took some Canadians over.
Mon. 5 April 1915
Dull day & squally, was not sick as generally am. Our departure last night was quite a surprise. Infrmd. that we are to go to Lemnos as rendezvous & then on to the Dardenelles. Full instrons. given re landing. Reading "Waters of Jordan" by Vachell. Rather indulging to this author of late.
Tues. 6 April 1915
Slept on a hatchway last night & expected the rolling of vessel to pitch me off but slept thro’ it all, O.K.! Stormy trip this! Went down to the forard hold & got up helios. Served out with 200 rds. amm. Sent p.c. to Ede.
Wed. 7 April 1915
Reached Lemnos at 8 a.m. Resembles Albany Harbour slightly. A boom across the entrance & patrolled by Eng. & French Destroyers. Queen Elizabeth in harbour & also the "Canopus".
Many rumours about re Bulgaria joing. the Germans. Dull weather gone & quite decent day. Grub rotten. Wrote to Ede re her crew.
Thur. 8 April 1915
Usual parades. Royal Naval Air Service arrived in the aftrnn. I had quite an intrstg. chat with one of thr. Sigs. Pay issues to some of the Bn. – 2/15/- & 3/15/- to Noncoms. Bde. Hq. ship attached itself to ours. Hope we don’t stay here very long. The grub is putrid & time is very monotonous.
Fri. 9 April 1915
Saw waterplane in morng. More ships arrived. Our fellows had a swim alongside. Many, many, rumours. Was paid £3. Approached a steward re some decent tucker. Usual parades. Sig. Co. take over Bridge work.
Sat. 10 April 1915
Mess Orderly today. Read "Gate of the Desert" by Oxenham. The "Caledonia" arrived with Terriers. Saw 2 submarines. Got a good feed in the eveng. a la sausages & ham. Jam pie le sweets! Guiness, Stout & Ginger Ale!
Sun. 11 April 1915
On Bridge doing watch 4 to 8 a.m. Had an intrstg. chat with the 4th mate. Missed Church Parade. Many more boats arrvd. Saw waterplane & submarine in flight & motion. A nice easy day spent mostly with the Cook, who is becomg. rather decent of late! Ended up with a passable dinner.
Mon. 12 April 1915
The boat crew rowed over to the Div. Hq. boat & got the mail. I had lrs. from Ede, Edna, Buck & Rodd, was the most important. Ans. some of them in the eveng. "Fixed" Ede’s photos. Gettg. fed up with this boat but not with grub!
Tues. 13 April 1915
Was to go ashore with rest of Bn. but the rain postponed everythg. We tried the new Buzzer System. I was on watch from 9.30 to 12 noon. Raind. like hell & I got wet on the Bridge. Had aftrn. off & done washg. & wrote to Ede enclsg. her photo & films. Did not send it. Ox tail for dinner! Tried the pontoons.
Wed. 14 April 1915
Early breckker & leave boat at 8.30 a.m. with Crpls. for field day ashore. The Bde. is out & we have rather a decent day. Wade ashore from pontoons. No dinner tonight! Nothg. tasty. The roads of Lemnos might be better & I fear a puncture. Cut my knee in a fall.
Thur. 15 April 1915
Duty stamps were brought back into vogue in N.S.W. 1914.
Knee very stiff. Corp. Mann went ashore with boats crew for stores & were away all day. I took 12 noon to 4 p.m. watch with Edwards. The said crew came home mostly drunk! Edwards hit consistly. for usg. that illegitimate word. Foolish.
Fri. 16 April 1915
Leg very bad. Saw Doctor & got off Parade wch. was a route march on land. Quite a peaceful morng.! Rest came back at 2 p.m. Many rumours afloat. What with a cut finger & gamy knee I’m feeling crook! Plaice for dinner.
Sat. 17 April 1915
Mess Orderly with Wade. Leg still bad & also thumb. Rumours of moving – more authentic than usual. Wrote to Rodd. Baker & Butcher hauled up for sellg. our issues! How sordid & disapptg. Absolutely no dinner anymore!
Sun. 18 April 1915
Church Parade as usual but I had to have my knee dressed so I missed it. Mann went ashore with lrs. for Ede & Edna to be passed by the East Cable man. On 4 to 8 p.m. watch.
Mon. 19 April 1915
Mail Day. Reced. lrs. from Ede, Alb & Buck. Blue jackets came aboard with rifles & equipment. Looks like an early departure. Wolff worked the oracle for a dinner.
Tues. 20 April 1915
Knee slowly imprvg. Rest went ashore to test the Buzzers. I was on Bridge from 12 to 4 p.m. with Wolff & plenty of work. The aero. ship "Inkosa" left for Malta at 4 p.m. Very windy & cold. We take in water. Lamb for dinner. Read a decent story in Windsor called "E. & West".
Wed. 21 April 1915
Rumours of leaving but tis postponed for 24 hrs. General preparations made. Raing. all day & no
parades. Spoke to Smith re remaing. on board. Wrote to Alb & Buck.
Thur. 22 April 1915
Canary Islands 1912.
On watch from 8 to 12 noon. Not one single ms. Reced. Daily Graphics from Alb. in aftrnn. & found them jolly intrstg. Knee improved. Grub perfectly putrid. Many warngs. as what to do on landg.
Fri. 23 April 1915
The rest went ashore for meat & the Corp. brought back some jam etc., read "Daily Graphic" from Alb. The Irish troops leave in eveg., "Munsters & Dublins". Fixed photos for self & Wade. Knee nearly well. Bde. staff comes aboard with Sig. Co. Good dinner at night.
Sat. 24 April 1915
My niece’s Birthday 1913.
Am writing this on the bridge of the Lake Michigan after being on the bridge all eveng. & all the next morng. (Sunday). We left Lemnos at 12 noon & anchrd. further round the coast at 4 p.m. Up again at 11 p.m. & proceed up the coast of Gallipoli with all lights doused.
Sun. 25 April 1915
After an adventurous voyage up the Gallipoli coast at night we anchor off Gaba Tepe at 4 a.m. I am on watch with Parsons. Troops landed at dawn under covering fire of the Navy’s guns. Some noise! Third Bde. go first with the 4th in reserve. The first heights taken by 9 a.m. At 10.30 the enemy get our range & we leave in a hurry with our transports. Bombardment of both attckg. forces watched by us all day. The "Queen Eliza." makes the fur fly.
Mon. 26 April 1915
Slept on bridge last night but nothg. doing. Hot day. Reced. message from the Adamant sayg. that the Turks had retreated on our left. Longing for news. The "Queen Elizabeth" makes things hum all along the coast. More transports come up. Our artillery landed.
Tues. 27 April 1915
On 8 to 12 noon. Pretty warm. Heard from the "Suffolk" that Italy & Greece had declared war on Germany but no news from the entrce. or Gaba Tepe. The guns seem farther away. Had a bath in eveng. by bribg. the second steward. No news of leavg. this confdd. harbour!
Wed. 28 April 1915
Left Imbros Island at 7.30 a.m. for Mudros Bay, Lemnos. Damn the luck! Anchored in our old spot in Mudros harbour. Many Rumours of Italy & Greece joing. in. This last move is an absolute mystery. Bad weather came up at night.
Thur. 29 April 1915
On from 4 to 8 a.m., very cold. A censored mail went but I did not write at all. Doing solitary watches now with Clarke as dayman. Read magazine all day & played cricket. On first day watch in eveng. Depressing day. Lovely moon on the middle watch.
Fri. 30 April 1915
Message came through from "City of Benares" that our Colonel is dead & the Major wounded. Also the dear old battalion has been cut up. Sad news this.
Sat. 1 May 1915
Recd. orders to leave Port Mudros for Gaba Tepe at 11 a.m. A Dummy cruiser outside Mudros was very well faked. Reached Gaba T. at 4 p.m. & joined up with rest of Transport fleet but reced. no orders from the ‘Flagship’. Our fellows seem to have obtained a good footing on the beach & huts & tents are up & plenty of stores visible & fine weather.
Sun. 2 May 1915
25 of the reinforcements leave. The Armour Sergt. comes aboard for his gear & we learn that Smith is dead & the dear old Corp. is in his place. Poor little Boss. The Brigadier and Major Irvine also have been killed. Many or. rumours seem to be false now. He took a lre. back to the Corp. The big bombardment by the ships & troops at 7.0 p.m. for half hour.
Mon. 3 May 1915
Heavy fire in morng. & the Turks hit a collier near by us. We soon cleared out! The 2nd hold party left. We heard that Jones was injured & also Capt. Mayberry [?]. Col. Bennett in charge of the Bn. & Brig. Genl. Walker in Brigade. Bought kahki shirt from Smith. Heard how the little Boss was killed. The Regulars are makg. good progress down south, have reached Acki Baba.
Tues. 4 May 1915
Frussell came aboard for the arrangg. of the Colonel’s Kit with plenty of news from the trenches, some gruesome tales he told. Bought some cigs. for the chaps & tobacco from the third mate Brown. Longing to be with the Corp. & the rest. Our ammn. was taken away by a trawler. Lizzie gets busy with her 15 in. guns, also aeroplanes.
Wed. 5 May 1915
Bought cakes etc. for the Corps parcel. Watson was going to take it but the boat did not come so the cakes are likely to get dry! Dirty weather sprang up. I slept below. Frussell the other warrior went back also a vest I bought for the Corps. Read & slept. Thoroughly sick of the whole concern & feel like doing a moonlight flit for the shore & my pals.
Thur. 6 May 1915
King Edward VII died 1910.
Dirty weather. Blowg. like hell! The officers servants are still here & I fear that the cakes I bought for Corp. will be rather stale. The Quartermaster (ships) sewed some blanket round my men [indecipherable]. Learn that the threatened attack of the enemy were repelled by though our machines.
Fri. 7 May 1915
Storm dies down. My cold is rotten & the odour below is putrid. Hostile aeroplane drops a bomb just astern of us. Heavy rifle & shrapnel fire. Capt. MacKay & the S.M. leave us for the firg. line. Arranged for one of the stewards to send photo to Ede & Enid of shell falling in water.
Sat. 8 May 1915
Cape Town 1913.
On first morng. watch. "London" fires at an aero. wch. I cdnt. see. Our waterplanes very busy all day. Frussell came aboard again with three more of our Bn. He brought a note from the Corp. Many fresh transports arrive with troops. My cold very bad, the scrappings of a mail arrived but none for me. The smell down below compels me to sleep on deck. Ordered a chicken for the Corp.
Sun. 9 May 1915
Made up my parcels for the Corp. & his lre. but Frussell did not go back. Milne stopped the officers’ servants leaving. My cold is rotten. The skipper gives me some pills of a doubtful nature. Things pretty quiet on shore. Rumour of a big defeat in France & the "Lusitania" sunk.
Mon. 10 May 1915
Frussell etc. went back to the trenches & took three bags of tucker to the Corp. Lieut. Beecher came aboard for a rest. I got into commtn. with the regiment ashore with big flag & helio. My cold is slightly improvg. Wrote two lres. for Ede & tried to get photo of shell & gave to steward.
Tues. 11 May 1915
Had a long chat with Bn. Hq. on helio & flag. My hopes are raised on gettg. the word that we shall be leavg. soon. Watson & grooms go ashore rather suddenly. Bad weather comes up & rain. Two new ships arrive with Imperial reinforcements. Rumour around that the Mauritania is now sunk. Also of an advance in France. What can one believe. My cold is slightly better. Turkish sailg. vessel captured down at the point. Pendg. inquiries.
Wed. 12 May 1915
Raing. in morng. but cleared up later. We left Gaba Tepe at 7 p.m. after dropg. three Sergts. over at the last minute. Spoke to Bn. Hq. in eveng. & they said that the Colonel’s body had been found & papers in tact. We reach Lemnos at 12 midnight & anchor outside boom. Hardly any boats are left at Gaba Tepe except man-o-war.
Thur. 13 May 1915
We move to an anchorage inside the boom & the "Hymettus" comes alongside. We hear that the battleship "Goliath" was torpedoed in the straits by a Turkish destroyer last night. The "Queen Elizabeth" is in Port Mudros coaling. No one seems to know what we are to do here. I believe the skipper does – and he’s mum, you bet. My cold is disappg. rapidly. The second mate gave me some books.
Fri. 14 May 1915
Gettg. pretty warm. We have orders to sail for Alexandria & left at 3.30 p.m. The Admiral transferred his flag from the Lizie to the Lord Nelson. We leave off doing watches and have a chance to get some sleep. Had a box with Tickner in eveng. & find that my wind is none too good. Read morng. Post of Apl. 6.
Sat. 15 May 1915
Pretty decent weather so far on this trip. Went down into hold with Parsons & got new message forms, etc., also stick for flag. No bridge work now & pretty easy time. Obtnd. badges, also applied for boots & Milne, our transport officer & a C.O. gives me the hint delicate as to the best way of obtng. a new pair. Read Daily Mail of Apl. 30.
Sun. 16 May 1915
Weather still fine. Much reading. Washed shirts etc. On watch at 7.30 p.m. for entrg. port. Were told to wait outside harbour until morng. I could do with some cash though! And also some letters. Milne thinks that he will be able to get an advce. from the Pay Office but I doubt it.
Mon. 17 May 1915
Entered Alexandria Harbour at 6.45 a.m. I was on watch with Parsons. Place full up with transports & more coming in. Moved into another anchorage at the wharf at 2.0 p.m. Many transports unloadg. horses & rumours that we are takg. back mules & these horses are going to France. Saw account of "Lusitania" going down, on May 7th, in an Egyptian paper. Nearly all on brd. went ashore but I did not. Got Daily Mail overseas edition from the "Malda" of March 20th, interstg. articles. Alexandria full of troops and the wounded.
Tues. 18 May 1915
Unloaded ship of Transport etc. We left the boat at 3.30 p.m. & reached Mex Camp in eveng. Back to the sand again. Damn our luck! Slept on the sand & cursed & cursed & cursed.
Wed. 19 May 1915
Left camp early & into Alex. for equipmt. etc. wch. I am short of. Called at Mustapha Pasha & saw Simpson, just recrd. from his wound. Called on Major Mac. & also Edwards. Saw Capt. Milson & Seldon in town. Adjut. at the Base Depot instructd. me to bring rest of sigs. along tomorrow. Could get no fresh equipt. Returned to camp at 7.30 p.m. & was paid £1 by Milne. Slept in tent. Posted lre. to the Corp.
Thur. 20 May 1915
Left Mex at 7.30 a.m. with rest of Sigs. & travelled to Mustapha Barracks where we got orders to proceed to the wharf & embark on the "Commodore", wch. we did after some trouble. I’ve been on some dirty tramps but this ship is the limit. I don’t believe they have an hose on board. We live on bully & biscuits and sleep in the horse stalls, no blankets and altogether a very mixed crowd & situation. Friend Simpson is most truly a star in a dust heap! Left Alex. at 8 p.m.
Fri. 21 May 1915
My eldest sister’s Birthday.
Second day out and very calm. Damned hot & the flies are unbearable. The food is putrid and I am glad that we are only on her for a few days. Just discovered that we have no wireless on board. If we meet a submarine, look out for squalls!
Sat. 22 May 1915
Rather strange that I shd. mention of submarines in my notes of yesterday. About 4 p.m. today we were some 120 miles or so from Lemnos, and we sighted a submarine. The skipper at once brought her round and thought discretion the better part of valour. Two watches were on down below and the old hulk managed to get up about 12 knots. We dodged amongst the islets off the Grecian coast until night and then he brought us N. West again but I can’t quite see where we shall come out at. Durg. the scare we all wore our lifebelts.
Sun. 23 May 1915
Up at 6 a.m. & shaved. The ship is somewhere in the Aegean Sea! After a very round about trip we reached Lemnos at noon & anchored inside the Boom. The skipper reported being chased by hostile submarine. Harbour full of men-o-war mostly French. Left Lemnos at 6 p.m. & made a very slow journey round to Imbros which we are due to reach at day break tomrw. Hear that relations are very strained between Italy & Germany. Got my kit ready.
Mon. 24 May 1915
Reached Imbros at dawn & anchored inside Boom wch. had been erected since we were here last. "Lord Nelson" inside & everything goes to show that hostile submarines are in the vicinity. Raining durg. morng. Playd. bridge with Simpson & Booth. Read in aftrn. Anxiously awaitg. orders for departure but they did not come today. Two Turk political prisoners brought on board. The Peninsula Press the new R.E. paper damned fine.
Tues. 25 May 1915
Italy declares war on Austria.
Left Imbros after Brekker & arrived at Gaba Tepe later. On reaching there the "Queen" told us to go back as a submarine had been sighted off Cape Helles. We went back escorted by a destroyer & reached the Boom safely. In aftrn. we heard that the above submarine had sunk the "Triumph" and only 200 saved. In eveng. we saw the transfers & destroyers go out to bury the dead. Fortunes of war. Playd. bridge. Alongside "Arcadian".
Wed. 26 May 1915
Learn that the reason for our being alongside the "Arcadian" is as a tender for her against submarine attack. The above sub. threatens to sink another ship today but the threat proves empty and the day passes quietly. Heavy swell on & we leave the "Arcadian" side & anchor alone. "Cornwallis" comes in & lies with nets out. Gettg. fed up with this confounded life & no work to do.
Thur. 27 May 1915
Altho’ unable to sink a ship yesterday the sub. gets the "Majestic" today but no lists have been issued yet. Damn the beastly little machine. Heavy bombardment heard all day from Cape Helles. Plenty of seaplanes up. Nothing doing over our end of the world. Our two Turk political prisoners left.
Fri. 28 May 1915
Boom broke on the southerly entrance. Over the side for a swim in morng. Boat drill in afrtn. and I tremble when I think of a real scare. Waterplanes seem rather a washout this last day or two. Anor. one went up & had to descend again. Broke into one of my iron rations & sampled the tea wch. was doubtful. Heard some revelations as to the supply of ammn. for Navy. New Cabinet formed.
Sat. 29 May 1915
Had a false alarm today. Thought that the boat had gone over for orders & found out that it had only gone to a store ship, after soap I believe as we have none on board. Usual round of nothing today and gettg. more fed up with the bally ship day by day. Complained about the grub but nothing came of it. Parsons & I went to the O.C. & asked if as Ny. men cd. go off by a trawler but we were snubbed & squashed horribly. I expect the above O.C. was a tram driver or rouse about by the language he uses & general appearance.
Sun. 30 May 1915
Began watches again. Parsons & I on 2-4 p.m. but only a farce. Orders reced. in aftrn. to leave tomrw. morng. at 6 a.m. Greek rejoicings. Heard that "Aquitania" had been blown up in her own dock by a bomb. Posted lre. to Ede (very short).
Mon. 31 May, 1915
Left Imbros at 6 a.m. for Gaba Tepe. Landed at last on Gallipoli Peninsula. Had a stiff pull up to the trenches. See the dear old Corp. at last. A great reunion. Lres. & parcel from Enid, Ede & Dr. Ardill & E.A.B. Ansd. Enid’s lre. Mann took one round to some of our trenches & saps. Saw Dawes & learn that E.A.B. is coming.
Tues. 1 June 1915
Stand to arms at 3.15 to 4.30 a.m. Slight artillery dual in morng. One man was injured down in the Gully as a result. Got new pair of Breeches. Went whole round of trenches. Helped Parsons with new squad in afrn. Wrote to Ede askg. for a parcel, made a [indecipherable] job much to my surprise. We blow up a mine at Quinns Post.
Wed. 2 June 1915
Extra Orderly today. Took semaphore class in mrng. & aftrn. Not much artillery work lately. Think that the Turks must be gettg. short of amm. Wrote to Ede & posted same. Obtnd. rather an interestg. "Syd. Mail" from the Padre with photos of the "Euripides". Tried a Peninsula Pudding & found it good, also Gallipoli Porridge. Rumour that typhus is in the camp.
Thur. 3 June 1915
Was paid £1. Spare man today. Issued rations in morng. Read a Punch wch. the Corp. gave me. Went for a swim in afrn. but had to leave the water hurriedly owing to shrapnel. The "Minerva" fires a few broadsides, protected by destroyer. Posted lre. to Dr. Ardill & p.c. to Rodd & Ray. Had a shot with Dawes in eveng. Heavy firg. tonight. Parsons decides to leave the dugout.
Fri. 5 June 1915
Spare man today. Mail from England, also a "N. of W." with the account of our landg. in & sinkg. of "Lusitania". Pretty quiet durg. the day but at 11 p.m. we made an attack at Quinns Post. I was on telephone from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. next morng. & found it rather difficult to hear owing to the artillery & trench mortars. Parsons goes to his new home & Ryrie & myself alter the old one. Oh! for a wash in fresh water.
Sat. 5 June 1915
Big artillery engagmt. this morng. & a shell lobbed into a pile of cans just to the right of my dug out. On at 7 p.m., Orderly first & then phone. Nothg. doing durg. night except erectg. wire entanglements in front of M.G. The little animals in the phone bureau cause me some trouble! My "N. of W." is in much request owing to the acct. of our landg.
Sun. 6 June 1915
Wrote & posted lre. to Prington. Nothg. doing. Off today. Rumours of peace in this campaign. Had a good swim & got flour & currants from Corp. Jefferies of A.S.C.
Mon. 7 June 1915
Lre. recd. from Ede of April 9th. Just scrappgs. of my mail arrng! On Divl. orders that 20 zeppelins had bombarded London also Allies were advang. rapidly. Wrote lre. to Reg but could not post owing to lack of envelopes. Bullet went right thro’ Parsons dixie. On phone in morng., Orderly in aftrn., damned [indecipherable] & plenty of work. Mann got me 2 tins of cigarettes from ship canteen. Shrapnel very near!
Tues. 8 June 1915
Major Mac came back not lookg. too good. On afrn. at phone. Read "Walls of Partition" by Florence Barclay an impossible heroine! Went for swim in evg. with Dawes. His cook made my puddg. Gave some to the Corp. A French monitor reputed to be here.
Wed. 9 June 1915
Went for swim in morng. & hear that Jefferies had been sent back with rheumatics. Managed to get cigs. & lemon squash from various sources. Cooked a concoction of my own of flour, sugar, water, jam which gave me indigtn. after. Feelg. rather low on the night shift. 1st Bn. hear digging right under them & we are all on Q.V.!
Thur. 10 June 1915
Feelg. much lower than I was yesterday! with majority of companions. The Sigs. are rotten now that the Corp. has left us for the Higher Grade. Anxiously awtg. a mail. Dummy attack at night, rather a H.W. Many rumours as to the war elsewhere. Warsaw fallen – N. Sea Battle – fall of Calais??? etc. Gettg. fed up with things in general. Probably owg. to lack of washg. necessities & the surplus of dirt everywhere.
Fri. 11 June 1915
Mail leaves today. I sent lre. to Reg. The time seems to go very quickly. Anor. week gone & still alive. Mail arrives from Australia but is not delivered until tomrw. Had quite a struggle for some water & developed the patience of a Chinaman! Waited 2½ hrs. at night at the well. Water gettg. scarce.
Sat. 12 June 1915
They sent in quite a number of shells this morng. & killed two & wounded two of our battalion, anor. one of our Corps. killed in afrn. at Observtn. Post. Mail Day. Lres. arrvd. from Rodd, Margie & Addie Warby. The latter one very acceptable. Also Annual Report from Rodd, many Aust. papers too dated April 30 & May 1, 2 & 3. How I long for a fresh wash.
Sun. 13 June 1915
Day & Beales came from hospital. Day comes in with me until he digs his own dug-out. On phone all day. Damn tirg. work. Two of our companies are restg. & two in trenches now. Whidburne also returned lookg. very fit. Very quiet day & no shells. French aero came over and dropped 4 bombs on the enemy. Rather topping. The Annual Report of B. Society came in rather intrestg. readg. & reminder of pleasant old times.
Mon. 14 June 1915
Off today. Took a class of small flag in morng. Reced. papers from Ede – Daily Express of May 26 & 27. Wrote seven pages of generalism to Addie Warby. On duty at night. Day’s chocolate is very acceptable! Some O.T. from Colin Clarke was very nice at night.
Tues. 15 June 1915
Hay was taken down early this morng. with appendicitis. A few shells came over the telephone Bureau but no damage done except to trees. Had a lovely swim – a decent break on – reminiscent of Manly! Monitor has a go in mrng. & makes a row. Began lre. to Dr. Buckley but my pen ran dry.
Wed. 16 June 1915
Raining slightly. On duty all day. Plenty of shrapnel in trenches & on beach. 2 men killed & 15 wounded at latter place. Rumours of America & Greece against Germany but not authentic. Put some overhead coverg. in my dug out. Please God kill all flies! Reading "Rodins Corner" by Merriman. Would that I were in Sydney & be done with this sordid war.
Thur. 17 June 1915
Rather cold durg. night. Wrote to E.A.B. & generally rested! Philosophied on the cursedness of things just now & craved for five minutes with the Kaiser! Improved my dug out. Wolff came in & we discussed Mosman & its inhabitants. On at 7 p.m. B. Coy. went to sleep & I was hauled out to wake him.
Fri. 18 June 1915
With the aid of some disinfectant I endeavour to rid my clothes of some troublesome objects. Very hot again. I long for the winter. A N. Zealander was hauled up as a German spy & his appearce. went against him! However, he got off but I’d advise watchg. him. Made a jam damper again & this one did not give me indigestn. Wrote to Rodd.
Sat. 19 June 1915
On as extra Orderly at 7 a.m. D Coy. relieved 6th L.H. Clarke came into tea wch. was steak fried by self, not so good as I’d have wished. Vistd. new Bde. Hq. rather snug. Order came thro’ that the G.O.C. was to visit the trenches tomorrow. Joy! A tin of apricot jam issued & potatoes. Shelled the beach a good bit.
Sun. 20 June 1915
Rumours of mail. Off all day on my 36 hours off. Swim in aftrn. & was shelled but no one hit. They have been shellg. the beach a good bit later. Dummy attack at night. Plenty of row! French reported to have advanced a mile down south. Eng. take to inflamable liquid.
Mon. 21 June 1915
Had a talk with Major Mc. On at 7 a.m. Mail Day. Lres. from Roseby, Miss Vera Brown, Miss Warby, Buck & photos, 2 from Ede, most of these been to Lake Michigan. News of World from Ede. Nothg. startlg. Suggestion that Reg might join. Plenty of readg. matter now. The Corp. gave me chocolate. Very acceptable.
Tues. 22 June 1915
Mess Orderly today with Smith, tobacco issue. Posted lres. to Ede, Rodd,
Miss Warby, Miss Vera Brown, Buck, P.Cs. to Margie & Enid. On at 7 p.m. Sydney mail with photos of killed officers very interestg. Tebbutt came back. Lent Dawes 4/-. He is going to Alex. Rumours that a small rlway is to come up Shrapnel Valley.
Wed. 23 June 1915
Veness kindly empties the Parafin into the Biscuit tin. Had some milk with morng. tea & it was a change! Had a swim amid shrapnel & shots! 2 killed & 3 wdd. while I was there. However, I soon cleared! You bet! Hear that no mail has been delivered in Eng. yet. Cheerful, I don’t think.
Thur. 24 June 1915
On ‘phone in morng. with Veness. Hot day as usual & plenty of messages. The Adjutant was injured in trying a hand grenade, only slightly. The string broke. Shelled the beach like Hell & got a total of 20 casualties. That gun will have to be stopped. My tummy is giving me gip lately. Memories of Powell.
Fri. 25 June 1915
Went for a swim in aftrn. & also foraged for some milk etc., but with no luck. The water was ripping. Germans recapture Limburg. Something is seriously wrong with the Russians. These
moratoriums retreats are gettg. monotonous! Dummy alarm at night. We fired 2 rounds, the Turks fired about 20! There trench mortar killed a Bde. Sig. at A Coy. phone & injured 10 more.
Sat. 26 June 1915
Shaved & used Pears soap! Lres. from Prington & Ede, Ray, 2 papers form Alb. Answed. a good few but did not post owg. to no envelopes. Daily Expresses also from Ede jolly good. The poor old girl seems worried.
Sun. 27 June 1915
On at 7 a.m. Altered Signal Office. Got rotten headache. 3 Sigs. on sick list. The new Scot Batteries are a success with their 5 in. lydite. The Sun got at me & I retired early & obtained a decent sleep. Solomons go to Hospital.
Mon. 28 June 1915
Feelg. much better. Attack down south & Turks counter attacked on us. Their shells came very near but done no damage. Got shorts from Wolff. Wrote to Prington but did not post. Lres. posted to Ede, Makeig & Angton.
Tues. 29 June 1915
Posted lre. to Prington. Learn that they gained their objective down south & also our Third Bde. on our right. About 140 in the shade all day. Jam for me. Read Alb’s Daily Mirrors. Jolly interestg. Wind storm at night & I spent most of the time holdg. my little grey home down! Enemy counter attacked on our gain down south.
Wed. 30 June 1915
On at 7 a.m. as third Ordrly. Easy kind of day. Many Sigs. attend sick parade. Learn that our attacks yesterday were a success. The times go very quickly nowdays. We supply grain for G.H.Q. Tried some of Wolff’s milk. A.1, you bet. 1st Bn. went to Imbros yesterday.
Thur. 1 July 1915
Mess Ordrly. today & I found the water bag very heavy! Rumours of a mail in. Wrote to Ray but did not post. Rained like Hell this morng. & last night & I was nearly washed out. Memories of Sydney & the infancy of the Bn. Major Mac ill again – effects of his old wound. Buildg. new dining saloon for officers!
Fri. 2 July 1915
Drew jam. Posted lre. to Ray & F.S., P.Cs. to Mr. Sale & Edna. Rained during night & eveng. Sea very rough & the bread was wet! Simpson gave me a tin of Café au Lait. What luck! Borrowed a Cassells from Mathews, also Great Luck.
Sat. 3 July 1915
Put in for a £1. Spoke to the S.O. & was permitted to have papers in Bureau again. Rained. Attdd. sick parade for some pills. Our recent offensive down south yielded some success & we took various trenches. Went down one of our saps. Intrstg. Swimg. in eveng. – jolly rough & the stones were very unkind. Tried some Café-au-Lait – not bad.
Sun. 4 July 1915
England regains the ashes from Aust. at North Union Rugby 1914.
Quite a dearth of news lately. Another week gone by & hardly noticed. Got a shrapnel burst right over my dug out this morng. Lres. reced. from Prington & 2 from Ede. She tells me that she has written to the Comm. Officers about yours truly. Ans. both when on duty at night.
Mon. 5 July 1915
Mail day. One to Enid. Missed my issue of lime juice. A trawler sank a submarine after she had fired a torpedo at the monitor. We saw the steam & smoke etc., but it is not certain that she sank. Rained at night. Read wonder magazine.
Tues. 6 July 1915
On duty first shift. Nothg. doing much. Posted lres. to Roseby & Ede. Shell landed by our Q.M. stores, was rather a surprise & also one up in Engineers lines! Was warned to attend C.O. tomrw. at 1830. Built my dug out at night! Poor food but improving. Drew jam.
Wed. 7 July 1915
D Coy. came out & C went in. Attended C.O. at 1830 & answd. all qusns. satisfactory. Am rather bushed but think I see light. Wrote to Alb & Miss Warby but did not post. Read London Mail wch. still remains indecent as ever! Really I have to put most awful rot in to fill up my diary these days. No doubt about it, trench life is monotonous. Third Orderly tonight.
Thur. 8 July 1915
Solomons came back from Lemnos. The Corp. gave me tin of salmon. Joy!!! Also managed to get some paper & envelopes from Bob Smith & Solomons & lime juice also from Jormer. My luck is in. Mail on beach. 95 in the shade & a little bit over. A good swim in eveng. & called on Eric Wooster. Also learned that Jeffries wd. not come back.
Fri. 9 July 1915
Salmon for Brekker, what joy, my luck is really in today. Smith, Major’s Batman gave me tin of cocoa milk & also news of Prington – I get my fountpen filled. Arrgd. with Bramble to get me milk, was given notepaper by Bob Smith. Heard that Frussel had lost his leg, Brown had died & Jones blind. Smith shifted in my dug out. Mail from Egypt but none for me.
Sat. 10 July 1915
Cocoa for brekker. Great news, Ordrly. with Veness. Very hot. Got some Lime Juice bucksheesh from Bob Smith. Read & slept in aftrn. & went on at 7 p.m. first shift with Veness 7-10. Turks blew up sap in our front at 9.15 p.m. & injured 7 slightly. It was a hell of a blow up! Smith gave me a clean towel. Luxury! Bought tin of milk from Bramble, drew jam.
Sun. 11 July 1915
Outward mail – lres. to Ede, Prington, Marjie & Buck. Inward mail – lres. from Buck & Ede. The former tells me that she left Aust. on June 5 by Osterley for London. Ede also says that she is sendg. a parcel but I have faint hopes of it ever reachg. me. Swim.
Mon. 12 July 1915
Big bombardment. We had designs on German officers trench but I don’t think it worked, few chaps wounded. Shells came very near the dug out. Lre. reced. from Edna – rather a surprise. Still whistlg. for Ede’s parcel. Swim.
Tues. 18 July 1915
Hot as Hell, touch of dysentery. Recd. "Windsor" mag with Recruitg. Posters in. Sorry that the Dornford Yates yarns have finished. Feelg. rotten all day & existed on dried biscuits & tea. First orderly at night. On 1-4 & read "The Shulamite" by Askew. Padre came back with stores.
Wed. 14 July 1915
My luck is in. Managed by divers ways to get 4/- chocolate & biscuits – pineapple – eggs – sardines, still feelg. bad but the change in food will no doubt alter it. I had the PINEAPPLE for tea, what a dream. I could live on fruit forever. Went for swim. 4 killed.
Thur. 15 July 1915
Insurance Act, 1912.
On third ordrly. 3 nice boiled eggs for brekker. Another dream! Made enquiries in to gettg. store off Imbros. Heard from Montague that Katie had gone to England. Russian shares looking up. Sardines on toast for tea!
Fri. 16 July 19915
Sent F.S. P. Cards to Mater – Ede – Dr. Ardill. With the Major’s batman’s help I made Blanc manch & rice puddings. Egg & bacon for brekker. Change of food plays quite an important part in my diary of late! Reced. papers from Ede. Issue of rice instead of cheese. Rumour that the Colonel is going to the 1st Bn. Paid £1.
Sat. 17 July 1915
Feelg. absolutely fed up with things in General. Could do with a damn good holiday. My chances for commission drop considerably. This section of ours is just the dizzy limit, of all the grumbling & etc. crowd - !!! Ugh! Colin Clarke gave me custard.
Sun. 18 July 1915
As usual, a damned hot day & my turn for duty. The enemy indulged in an "Afternoon Hale" & kicked up the dust above sigs. dug-outs. Simpson reced. his parcel from Cairo. I am thinkg. that … Four of ours went out at night & killed 18.
Mon. 19 July 1915
Began my new job observg. for the Corp. Mail in but only late stuff & none for me. Went for swim after stand-to, simply lovely & NO SHELLING. Mail day. Sent lres. to Ede & Edna. Beginning to feel done up towards end of the day. Colonel Bennett leaves & Major Mac is made Colonel at last. Dinner below.
Tues. 20 July 1915
Went for swim at 5 a.m. Brekker below, in fact, all meals. I think in future. my first day on Intelligent Staff, I shall be a reporter if I come thro’ all right! Corp. gave me box of Turkish Delight. It was delight. Posted lre. to E.A.B., disinfected my khaki shirt.
Wed. 21 July 1915
Went round for information after stand to & all were asleep. Wore my khaki shirt. Things pretty quiet during day. Our people gettg. very touchy lately & see alarms in every movement. Mail in, lres. from Prington & Ede, also parcel from the Jormers with chocs. & sweets. Hqs. got jumpers & I spent night observg. Lonesome Pine.
Thur. 22 July 1915
Preparing for the threatened attack. Wrote to Enid. The attack did not come off altho. we stood to for some time when the moon went down & at dawn next morng. I wish the enemy would hurry up & get this attack over. I’m anxious to go to IMBROS as is rumoured.
Fri. 23 July 1915
Swim after stand to, washed socks & handkerchiefs, had a much needed sleep. Some antiquated bombs came over rather near. Posted lre. to Prington & Ede. No par. arrvd. from Ede. Rumours as to advance down south.
Sat. 24 July 1915
With the aid of a dixie of water I obtained a bath. Save the word! Lre. reced. from Ede. Rice issued today. Aero reports Turks landg. troops. Hope that "tonight is the night". Wolff changes dug o. with Parsons, dogs delight etc.
Sun. 25 July 1915
Beastly long stand to & as usual no attack. "Importce. of Being Ernest"! I am gettg. recognised by the O.C’s now & infmts. comes more easier. Eternal cry of the trenches "Give it Imbros!" Rum issued today. I swapped mine for lime juice. Wrote lres.
Mon. 26 July 1915
Lres. posted to Ede, Katie, Mater & P.C. to Prington, damned hot & affectg. my head somewhat. Their 75 smashd. our observg. station. Shaved & hrcut. Oh for a spell!
Tues. 27 July
Austria declares war on Servia 1914.
Got a Cassell’s Mag. Great luck. Things are dull. Went for swim in morng. & tried to change boots. Rumours of leavg. for England. Great hopes.
Wed. 28 July 1915
Did not stand to. Reckon Turks have new Comm. Trench but Adjt. says NO. Nuff sed. Got it definite that an appton. went to Bde. for me. Merrivale came into my dug out but not to sleep. His cake was good.
Thur. 29 July 1915
Went round to 1st Bn. &c. with Merrivale & observed from their position. Lres. from Ede & papers Alb & Buck. Wrote to Ede & Prington. "London Ops" from Buck. Very intrstg. Doing artillery observatn. now. German aero over in eveng.
Fri. 30 July 1915
Artillery observg. in morng, hottest day for long time – about 120 in shade! My dysentery is very bad & I feel rotten. Do not stand to in morng. now. German aero over again.
Sat. 31 July 1915
Turks erected bomb proof screen wch. we demolished in half an hour! Had arrowroot for lunch & dinner as my condition is worse. Merivale went the rounds as I felt bad. Generally feelg. ‘down’. Curse the luck.
Sun. 1 August 1915
Operations last night resulted in our takg. a trench on right flank. Went for swim in morng. with Merivale. He did my rounds in afrn. as I was still bad. Got 2 eggs from Q.M.
Mon. 2 August 1915
Germany declares war on Russia & France 1914.
Many rumours as to an advance. My dysentery is much better owg. to eggs from Q.M. Rather cooler thank the Lord. German aero over again, but our guns & rifles drove her off.
Tues. 3 August 1915
Many rumours rife as to leavg. or advancg., but guess we shall advance or try to.
Wed. 4 August 1915
ENGLAND declares WAR on Germany 1914.
The great anniversary display that was rumoured did not come off. Got a touch of the sun in 3rd Bn. & feel crook. My parcel arrived from Ede.
Thur. 5 August 1915
On Major Le Maistre’s staff for the day at 3rd Bn. Hq. Our Bn. left the trenches for rest & 8th took over. Feelg. perfectly rotten & my head is putrid. Wrote to Ede & Prington with badge in former lre.
Fri. 6 August 1915
Der Tag! Went for swim in morng. Left old dug outs at 3.30 p.m. & went round to PIMPLE with rest of Bde. The perfect Hell until well into the night. I shall be an advocate for peace after this war. The Corp. had his wrist smashed. Fed up with war! But it was rather fun all same.
Sat. 7 August 1915
After adventurous trip joined Bn. Hq. about 2.30 a.m., plenty of dead bodies about. What a hum! The N.Z. advanced down on left flank but no definite news from them or down south. My head is absolutely bursting & I want sleep. We retain our position here tho’ heavily bombed on at 12 mid. to 3 a.m. next morng.
Sun. 8 August 1915
Dead started perfuming early! Much worse than yesterday. We are left with 6 officers including the Col. who says that he won’t leave until every officer is posted. Young Brown was injured an hour or so after. Quite a cheerful prospect! Some of the dead were moved during night by the Comm. Rangers. They don’t seem to like their job much. The staff seem to think that I am the only one capable of workg.
Mon. 9 August 1915
Another day of pay begins. Col. is pretty bad & is only kept up with rum & morphia. The dead are absolutely awful & turn me up every time. We are relieved at last at 6 p.m. by 2nd Bn. & L.H. Round to old Hq. & slept, slept, slept.
Tues. 10 August 1915
After very heavy sleep durg. night eat a so so brekker. On duty from 11-2 p.m. at 6th Bn. phone, more sleep in afrn. The Col. is put on hosp. ship. Capt Scott in charge. Aero duel at night. German brought down. Lre. from Mum.
Wed. 11 August 1915
N. of W. from Ede. Am told that mail lighter was sunk with 200 bags. Went for swim at 1.30 p.m. The remains of the Bn. went back to the trenches at Lone Pine (& the smell). I am on A Coy. extension & below a dead Turk again! How I long for a good rest.
Thur. 12 August 1915
False alarm durg. night. Some of our sentries have been out on the spree, I’m afraid. Took my phone away today but I stayed on as Ordrly. Dead Turk just above gettg. very ripe! Went down to Bde. in eveng. & was 3 hrs. obtaing. wire. Hurry up tomrw.!
Fri. 13 August 1915
Easy day as far as work is concerned. Relieved at 2.30 p.m. Connatty was killed by shell just after. Obtained pack & also Merivale’s gear. Would relish a good feed just now.
Sat. 14 August 1915
Parsons goes away sick. Went for swim early in morng. & met Ryrie down thr. Posted lres. to Mum & Ede & P.Cs. to Ray, Alb, Buck & Rodd. Feeling absolutely done & want a rest. Went down to Div. Hq. in eveng. & saw Ryrie at his dug out. Got various things off him includg. a promise for more food.
Sun. 15 August 1915
Had 4 eggs for Brekker & cocoa. Luxury again. Into Lone Pine trenches at 1 p.m. First batch of returned wounded from Eng. arrived with good reports of the Base Camp at Weymouth. The smell still remains in the trenches but they are muchly improved.
Mon. 16 August 1915
Went down to 6th L.H. in morng. re Merivale’s lres. etc. & got one & a parcel – a notebook. Parcel arrived from Ede of good things. Rather quicker this one than previous parcel. Feelg. done.
Tues. 17 August 1915
Anniversary of formation of the 4th Bn. 1914.
Left Lone Pine trenches at noon. Absolutely done up. On duty at night – was going down to Ryrie but felt too weak. Wish that I could be in England.
Wed. 18 August 1915
Attended sick parade & was told that I wasn’t so bad! What a farce. Wrote & posted lre. of woe to MATER. Went down & saw Ryrie & Major Tebbutt was taken bad later & temperature went up, shifted down to 3rd Field Hosp. late at night.
Thur. 19 August 1915
Australian Exped. Force leaves Sydney for New Guinea, 1914.
Examined by doctor & diagonised as flu, etc., stay at 3rd F.Amb., called on Ryrie later & got one of two edibles. Feelg. dirty – tired - & lousy! Slept outside most of night.
Fri. 20 August 1915
Lookg. on condition of blankets & general dug-out we exist in. I’m satisfied that the second line of A.M.C. is disgustg. & kept atrocious. Still feelg. lousy. Went over to Indian Camp in eveng. & got some chapadies (?) which went down well with marmalade. Slept outside but still have intruders!
Sat. 21 August 1915
Got up feelg. exceptionally dirty & also something else. Havn’t washed for weeks & feel absolutely disgustg. My hands are grimy even. Won’t I have someth’g to say about the A.M.C. when I get back! P.Cs. to Ede, Mater, Ray & Alb. All the others go to Mudros except me.
Sun. 22 August 1915
Shaved & wrote lre. to Ede wch. I did not post as I am waiting for a green envelope. Called on Indians & had a feed of curry & chapadies. Fifth Bde. being doing good work on left.
Mon. 23 August 1915
Excepted to go back to trenches today but didn’t. Oscar Keyte moved into my dug out. We managed to get a decent meal at night. Very windy all day. A touch of diarrohea today, feelg. passably well.
Tues. 24 August 1915
Told the Doc. that I could go back, so I went with Keyte at 3 p.m. Learn that my papers were sent back also lres. & parcel. Cheerful feelg. very grimy. Padre comes down with yarn about Greece declrg. war & battle in Black Sea. Posted ordy. P.C. to Alb.
Wed. 25 August 1915
Managed to get a good wash all over down at A.M.C. Feel clean & good. Bn. came out of trenches & I joined up.
Thur. 26 August 1915
Had eggs for Brekker & porridge. On duty at 7 to 10 a.m. Lre. from Ede, parcel for Merivale. Wrote to Mann, Ede, (2 lres.) Prington. Bought some canteen stores. Sausages went down well also tomatoes. Dawes came back.
Fri. 27 August 1915
Vaccinated Sydney 1913.
Moved into trenches at 7.30 a.m. & put in charge of extension ‘phone. Bought more biscuits from canteen stores. Attack on Hill 60 at 1700 & 2400 again. Made a dug out. Weather takg. a distinct change for coldness & flies suffer. Wrote to Ede & posted.
Sat. 28 August 1915
Went to 6th L.H. & got lres., parcel for Merivale. Nice cake in parcel from Fortnum & Masons. Borrowed a Cassells & spent an easy day. Indigestion has me in its grips & I intend going on short diet.
Sun. 29 August 1915
Came out of trenches at 0900. On returng. to our old quarters I find lres. from Ray, Ede, Alb & Rodd wch. is very cheerg. Rumours of gettg. relieved. Knock of my food today owg. to diarr. Bread & milk for tea was rather a change.
Mon. 30 August 1915
On at 1 a.m. to 4 a.m., phone. I write lres. to Ede, Ray & Alb. Lre. arrives from Ede with 2 hankies in. Mess Orderly today. Swim in afrn. with Dawes. Saw Ryrie & bought several things. Got 2 eggs from Dawes, had a good wash at night. Diarrhoea still bad.
Tues. 31 August 1915
I enlist in the dear old "Fighting Fourth" 1914.
Moved back to LONE PINE trenches, feelg. putrid & my tummy is very seedy, plenty of bombs flying about – also rumours. Paraded Richardson for refsg. etc. & Corp. refuses to deal with it.
Wed. 1 September 1915
My first day in the ARMY, 1914.
Richardson got 21 days 2nd Field Punish. Saw Doc. about new injection. Very cold change. On light diet & had arrowroot for dinner & tea, still feelg. played out & Dawes did not make the injectn. Rum & managed double issue too!
Sent lre to Col. Cox re Merivale paters address.
Thur. 2 September 1915
Out of trenches at 1200. Rumours of leavg. for IMBROS shortly. Shortages made up in equipment. Reced. "Mirrors" from Alb. Read & shaved in aftrn. Fraid I’m gettg. thinner every day if the glass speaks true!
Fri. 3 September 1915
Batch of about 40 arrived from Egypt for the 4th includg. Transport Auxillaries. Hear of the Corp. injection by Dawes for Diarrhoea. Tasted some Port! Rumours of Turkish attack.
Sat. 4 September 1915
4 eggs for Brekker! & real bread & butter also syrup! Moved in LONE PINE trenches for what we hope to be the last time. The 6th Bde. landed at night. Rumours of a good advance on left, wrote to Bertie Vandipper but did not post.
Sun. 5 September 1915
Very quiet day considrg. that an attack is expted. but it doesn’t come off. Wrote lres. & read. Sixth Bde. are to relieve us so are lookg. forward to an early departure. Many rumours. Rum issued. Insects keep me awake at night more than usual!
Mon. 6 September 1915
Leave LONE PINE trenches for the last time we hope. Dawes made an attempt to cut my hair. Mail in from Australia & reced. one lre. from Addy Warby, also Yankie mag. for H.A.M. & Bully. Many indications of leavg.
Tues. 7 September 1915
Lres. to Ede, Bertie, Rodd, Buck. See my note of yestrdy. that I hope we leave, I learn that we are to go back there tomrw. What an example of our imperishable "Heads". Paraded sick & got eggs. On at 2200 to 0100. Reced. anor. Aust. lre. this time from Rodd. About time I heard from Prington.
Wed. 8 September 1915
Moved back into LONE PINE & teach the 23rd trench work. I rub the 6th Bde. Sig. Off. the wrong way! On comparison the 12th L.H. are soldiers to this 6th INF. BDE. Their Sigs. are absolutely rotten & never been on a phone, even the BDE. crowd. Solomons got a smack.
Thur. 9 September 1915
Some cur purloined my hat during night & it was damned cold. Found my hat later. Instructg. 23rd Bn. Sigs. on ‘phone. My butter runs out & also my Golden Syrup. Down on the hard again! Plenty to read.
Fri. 10 September 1915
Very dull & cold. 24th Bn. men came in for ‘phone instron. I am Mess Orderly. A 24th sentry nearly shoots me. Read a good deal. Posted lre. to Miss Warby per Bde. Linesman. Rotten cold.
Sat. 11 September 1915
Weather is absolutely English. A snip of rum in morng. came in very acceptable. Wrote to H.A.M. Again the troops are changed. 75 mm. hit parapet near phone killing one of our own men & two of the 24th.
Sun. 12 September 1915
Last day in LONE PINE Trenches. Was relieved at 10 a.m. & went to old HQs. & rest camp later. After many false alarms we left for the Beach at 0200 the next morn.
Mon. 13 September 1915
Embarked at 0200 for the "Osmanieh". Raing., managed a good brekker. Reached Lemnos at 1100 & disembarked to Ferry boat at once. Long march to camp [indecipherable] ground. Saw Montague. Slept in tent.
Tues. 14 September 1915
The Tucker is a notable improvement with plenty of eggs & beer. Slowly gettg. clean. Had a swim. Lre. from Buck in LONDON. M.G. & Sigs. got a tent & it rained Hell.
Wed. 15 September 1915
Plenty of water & all wet. Read in morng. Went to second Village in aftrn. & bought fruit in tin. Had fried eggs. Orders out re new Sigs. strength. Borrowed £1 from Montague. Rest of Bn. arrived. He gave me infrmtn. re Katie & cigarettes.
Thur. 16 September 1915
Rained like Hell for over 3 hours in morng. & we were completely washed out. The ground is disgraceful & reflects no credit on the authorities! Of course, we move tents again. Gettg. fed up with this constant movg. but am resigned! Strafe.
Fri. 17 September 1915
Left Cale St. 1912
The dawn broke on a cold cheerless scene. Two tents down durg. night. Fixed up tents on new ground. Had chicken at monastry. Capt. Magee came back. Windy as Hell. Imagine puttg. tents up.
Sat. 18 September 1915
Went for bath in stream & No. 1 village after. Reqon. sent in for gear. Mail from Warby, Prington, Mum, Katie, shirts from Buckles, & lre. from Fox who is getting Church.
Sun. 19 September 1915
Church Parade at 0830 & inspn. – by Brigadier (Col. Cass) after. New shirts issued & towel & trunks. A Bathe in sea after Parade & change into clean clothes. First time for 5 MONTHS. Read in aftrn. & rested muchly. Read in eveng.
Mon. 20 September 1915
Mail in & one from Rodd & two from Ede with photos. Posted lre. to Prington. Begin signallg. instron. & rifle drill for 2 hrs. – 9-11. Very windy. Went to village with Sol in afrn. & bought mellon & sardines.
Tues. 21 September 1915
Signallg. instron. very dry & uninterested. Went for swim in morng., pretty cold. Posted lre. to Ede, Buck & F.S. P.C. to Ray & Alb. Allen made a deal in butter & it went down well. Paid 10/-.
Wed. 22 September 1915
Windy, obtained clothes from wash & also stores of various kinds from village. Read & wrote in evening. Another mail in. From Ede & Makeig, Senor & Alice, Makeig. Weather very "parky".
Thur. 23 September 1915
Windy again. Managed to get 9 tins of butter – great luxury! Tried new semaphore squad – wonder if this instron. will mean more to me than my present No. 1 stripe. Salad for tea! little else.
Fri. 24 September 1915
N.C.O’s parade after rest of Bn. & we try our hand at drill. Didn’t do too bad. Lre. from Mr. Ray re financial position, also mags. from A.C. Fox. Still windy. Grub rotten.
Sat. 25 September 1915
Feeling crook & bad cold. Weather fine but chilly. Posted lres. to Rodd & Addie Warby. Went to No. 1 village – Sarpi - & had a bath on the way with Solomons. Bought plenty stores. Rumor Greece at war & ors.
Sun. 26 September 1915
Church Parade at 0900. Coy. men transferred to Hq. Fruit for dinner. Wrote to Mr. Ray in afrn. but did not post. Salmon for tea. Rather High! Sore throat & properly crook.
Mon. 27 September 1915
Exam by Doctor at noon & I was picked out & specially examd. but it won’t be anything, worse luck! Lecture on "messages" in eveng. Drill still going on monotonously.
Tues. 28 September 1915
Tried my new class with groups. Anor. med. inspon. I was passed fit except for eyes & I am to see specialist tomorrow. Sigs. begng. fatigues & I am in charge of the wall-buildg. depart.! The wall passably good when finished.
Wed. 29 September 1915
Paraded sick with eyes. Went to No. 3 Aust. Gen. Hosp. & Lockhart Gibson examd. my optics. So-So verdict. Wrote to Ede & posted same with Army Order re LONE PINE victory. Victories on French Front confirmed. No pay.
Thus. 30 September 1915
Called on Monty & he gave me notebook. No money going. Wrote various long lres. & posted one to Buckles. Heavy mist came up at night. Good swim in aftrn. Rumors of pay.
Fri. 1 October 1915
Was paid after lunch & by a roundabout way, managed to get £5. Went to village & bought stores, also left washing. Swim in aftrn. Night parade but owing to my eyes I do not attend these. Thank God I am feeling better.
Sat. 2 October 1915
Our Fatigue day but got leave with Poole to go to the "Bacchante" so missed the work. After much trouble we got a boat to Mudros Town. Nothg. doing there & called at a French boat on return journey. Entente Cordiale in reality! The wine was good!
Sun. 3 October 1915
Parcel from Ede with stove inside & many good things, did not attend Church Parade. Was going to Hosp. in afrn. but on my way across I struck a boat & ended up the day in a trip round harbr. & bought stores.
Mon. 4 October 1915
Sold some of the 28 lbs. of butter which I bought yesterday. Lre. from Alb statg. news re Zepplin raid. Posted lres. to Ede & Ray, P.C. to Ede acknwldg. parcel. Lecture in eveng. on "outposts". No washg. done yet.
Tues. 5 October 1915
Magee did not turn out. Changed into clean shorts & shirts. Played footer in afternoon. Bound got 3 days C.B. Fatigues in afternoon altho. not our day. Posted lre. to A.C. Fox. "Syd. Mail" arrd. from Miss Warby.
Wed. 6 October 1915
Duty corp. & dozens of fatigues. Magee did not turn out. Route march & rifle work at half time. Posted lre. to Edie. Readg. the Beloved Vagabond by Locke. Quite an intrstg. little book.
Thur. 7 October 1915
Bayonet fighting in morng. Lamp Key work & an extra hour of it in the afrn. No bread issued.
Fri. 8 October 1915
Rained in morng. & parade was dismissed after 30 min. & though threatened with N.C.O’s parade it did not come off. Sent lre. of Birthdy. greetgs. to the Mater. Rained all day. Read extensively. Called on Eric Wooster & was caught in hurricane.
Sat. 9 October 1915
Route march in morng. Lecture on trenches for half an hour after parade. Rained durg. afrn. Read & wrote. Chap from the 1st Field AMB. came along for his hat! Fanning rejoined Bn. & took A Coy. Badge went.
Sun. 10 October 1915
Solomons & Poole went to "H.M.S. Louis" & left me in charge. Fatigue Corp. today but nothg. to do still. Stop put to sellg. on the Beach. Rumours again rife as to destination.
Mon. 11 October 1915
Usual morng. parade of much talkg. & a consequent headache! Also one in afrn. with officers, shall we have any time left soon? Parade in eveng. but I was sick & was excused. Lres. from Addie & Edna. One sent to E.A. Makeig.
Tues. 12 October 1915
Inspon. by the I.G.C. wch. was slightly mad. Canteen List issued & I take charge for the section, still no bread. Night parade with lamps, very cold. Slept outside & was nearly blown away. Caught rotten cold.
Wed. 13 October 1915
Lre. from Ede & papers, still very cold & windy, feelg. crook. Borrowed flags from D.S.C. Diarrohea rotten. Usual night parade, cocoa for supper. Dawes tells me of the latest rumors.
Thur. 14 October 1915
Feelg. pretty rotten in head & saw Dawes who gave me the usual solid medicine. Very windy. Dr. Tebbutt was over & I hear that he is going to the Base with promotion.
Fri. 15 October 1915
Wrote to Ede & Uncle Fred – 9 Wingfield St. [indecipherable]. Off parade by A.M.C. orders & attdd. sick ditto. Bad attack of flu’ & general rottenness. Diarrohea absolutely putrid. What a life!
Fri 15 Oct
9 Wingfield St
Sat. 16 October 1915
Off parade with my ‘flu & dysentery. Laid up all day, did not go to sick parade. Feelg. totally fed up with the whole caboosh, inoculated against dysentry, lres. from Ede (re latest smash up) Mum, Katie. No parade.
Sun. 17 October 1915
Plenty of rain, still crook, posted lre. to Ede with 10/- for Fairdale, also short one to Rodd. Sick. Awfl. sick as hell. Aquitania came in. My poor old nut aches & Edie’s lre. didn’t exactly cheer me.
Mon. 18 October 1915
Still windy & doing no parades. Head slightly better. Laid up as usual. Had eggs, milk for lunch. Still feelg. very low. No more. Damn ‘em all for stealing my hat!!!
Tues. 19 October 1915
Usual wind & off parades. Wrote to Addie Warby. Saw Monty of the 1st. Read Dialstone Lane by Jacobs. Would that I were in England beside a fire & goodly viands at hand.
Wed. 20 October 1915
Left Sydney 1914 on "S.S. Euripides" for unknown destination.
It’s a year since we left the Queen City & I’d love to be back. My opinion is changed muchly on sodgering. I’d give anything to enter the Heads today.
Thur. 21 October 1915
Am transferred to the Signallers, 1914.
Still doing no parades, was inoculated against dysentry & my word it hurt. Rabbit for tea. Sent lres. to Prin. & Mum.
Fri. 22 October 1915
Off parade. Again inoculated against dysentry. Spoke to Dawes re transfer over water. Wish to God that this wind would stop. Tongue for tea & it wasn’t up to much. Wrote to Edna. First teeth extractions for Bn.
Sat. 23 October 1915
Still windy & dusty. Was marked duty today by the Doc. Can’t say that I feel any better. Equipmt. inspon. in aftrn. Read a good deal & played bridge in eveng. with Campey &c. Rumors of departg. Please God that it’s Egypt!
Sun. 24 October 1915
Rained muchly & no church parade. Played bridge extensively whole day with varying fortune. Read Sophie of Kravonia. Parade in eveng. & was told we were returng. to Anzac.
Mon. 25 October 1915
Bde. traing. & nearly ran my legs off! Wind dropped & lookg. forward to going back to Gallip.! I don’t think! Readg. Sophy of Kravonia by Hope. Played bridge, posted lres. to Ede & Katie.
Tues. 26 October 1915
Kit inspon. & gettg. ready for leavg. Ate many pears! Capt. Magee gave me pleasg. information. He is not comg. with us, also. Got rid of superfluous goods, paid 10/-.
Wed. 27 October 1915
Reveille at 4.45 & left camp at 6 o’c. March to pier nearly knocked me out. Many long waits. Reached "Osmanieh" about 1 p.m. Trouble about food as usual. We did not leave.
Thur. 28 October 1915
Still in harbour, spendg. a so-so time on board. Weather still rough wch. is probably the cause of us stoppg. Saw Montague in eveng. & we had cocoa together. Managed a feed off the saloon pantry later.
Fri. 29 October 1915
Still in harbour & took on more rations wch. dosn’t look very promisg. Gettg. completely fed up. Monty came down to lunch & we had a pleasant little feed. Left Lemnos at 1.15 p.m. & reached Anzac at dusk & disembkd. later.
Sat. 30 October 1915
Got some sleep early this morng. after an awful march out to the right. Anzac is muchly altered since I was last here. Wolff & Parsons turned up & as usual I get a dugout on my own. On from 2000 to 2400. Slept but little. Mice!
Sun. 31 October 1915
Went to D.H.Q. & saw Ryrie & stayed to lunch wch. was the best meal I’ve had for months. He gave me some syrup & a promise to look after an opening. Spoke to Chappelly in eveng. re comm. & he also advised waitg. Rained at night.
Mon. 1 November 1915
Digg Mr. Judges’ dugout in morng. He is temp. S.O. Am really gettg. fed up early. Woodman is made M.G. Officer. Am thinkg. of movg. my D.O. nearer the phone. Wind dropped somewhat. Came off phone at 7 p.m. New phones, started at Rest Camp.
Tues. 2 November 1915
Moved D.O. to nearer H.Q. Visited Monty & obtnd. choc. & refill. Lres. from Ede (2), Ray & his Bro. Frank. Heard that Katie is in Calais. Eng. papers very intrstg. Zepps. seem to have been busy. Answd. some lres. while on night shift.
Wed. 3 November 1915
Slept in my own D.O. altho’ I was on duty. The ‘phone D.O. is lousy. Visited Ryrie & stayed all day, saw Dr. Teb. & discsd. comm.. He is seeg. Scott tonight. L.H. gained 120 yds. Wrote to Ede & F. Ray.
Thur. 4 November 1915
Draw jam. On all day. Raing. in afrn. & got considrbly. wet. Called on Monty in eveng. & wrote out applcn. for comm. Lres. from Mann, Warby, Mum, Edna, parcel of books etc. from Addie. Turks attkd. L.H. new position, but no good!
Fri. 5 November 1915
What a Guy Fawkes day! Hauled out on tea time for night work in the supports with the Bn. to L.H. Nothg. happened. Lre. to Mr. Ray, sent in applcn. for comm. to C.O. Fixed up Bell in phone.
Sat. 8 November 1915
After a putrid night we returned at 7 a.m. Lres. from Ede, Katie & Buck. Wrote to Mann, Mum, Buck. Attached to D Coy. wch. makes my resolve to leave only greater. Gave Parsons 3/- for salmon. D Coy’s cook gave me a rissole!
Sun. 7 November 1915
Saw Brigadier in mrng. with Major Scott, everything went satisfcty, also learned who will get the S.O’s job of this Bn. Quite surprised, moved into Kinipples D.O. Had tea up there in mrng. On duty from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Some J.Js came over our way, but no damage done. Pancakes for tea. Lre. & photo from Edna. The photo was indifferent. Cold at night.
Mon. 8 November 1915
Wrote to Addie & Edna & Ede. Cooked salmon rissoles & pancakes in morng. They went well at tea time. Called on Monty later & got a cigar & chocos. also Egyptian cigs., gave him news of all my latest doings, borrowed many books from him.
Tues. 9 November 1915
The "Sydney" licks the "Emden" a few miles from us 1914.
Done intensive washg. in morng. Saw Dunlop the M.G. officer, changed my shirt, posted lre. to Katie. Adjt. gave me job of copyg. MT/393 & my applicn. form. I typed it at Bde. H.Q.!
Wed. 10 November 1915
24 today. What a birthday & in what a hole. Hopes for happier one next year! Cooked some pancakes in afrn. Read "Double Bed Dialogues". Heard in eveng. that Wolff’s comm. was out. Also that another Sig. had put in for R.E. business. Doubt this item. Tummy aching!
Thur. 11 November 1915
Windy in morng. My applicn. form returned on me again & I had to be medically examined by Capt. Stack. Rained muchly. Congratulated Wolff in eveng. on gaining his commisn. Read the Cassells lent by Monty.
Fri. 12 November 1915
Rained again. Cooked pancakes & rissoles a la Beef! Have suffered from indigestion lately, very quiet & no work, doing extensive readg. Rather a funny type of book "Woodside Farm" by Mrs. Clifford. Had a chat with Lt. Wolff.
Sat. 13 November 1915
X the Line again 1914.
Altered my dug-out & made two separate bunks. Quite up-to-date! By foul means I obtained a good supply of oil from the Light Horse. Went to bed early & had a good read. Anxiously awaitg. the momentous verdict of G.H.Q.
Sun. 14 November 1915
Went round to Popes Hill in morng. & saw Jack Makeig. He is not lookg. too well. Had a talk over old times. Lres. from Buck, Katie, Edna, Addie & also parcel of 12 books from Katie. Wrote in eveng. to Makeig & Buckles with badge for Catter.
Mon. 15 November 1915
Wrote to Katie of Calais! Called at D.H.Q. & found that Ryrie was away for operation. Managed two items, Honey & a candle! Had dinner there. Big thunderstorm at night but my D.O. kept dry. "Beachy" active! Coffee for tea, luxury.
Tues. 16 November 1915
Feelg. philosophical! Must write some lres. for a cure. Wrote to Prington & Edna. Cooked some bully & coffee. Water ran short. Visited Monty & obtained lemon, salts, etc. His sparrg. partner came back with me & gave him 3 tins sardines.
Wed. 17 November 1915
Jack Makeig came round in
eveng. morng. & stayed to dinner. We chatted over old times. In eveng. it rained heavens hard & every trench was a quagmire & cold, Ugh! Got orders to move posey.
Thur. 18 November 1915
Coldest day I’ve experienced so far, started on new Dugout. Beachy Bill very active. Fired all day & night with 80 casualties. Wrote to Ede, managed a tin of strawberry at one meal.
Fri. 19 November 1915
Cold, cold & colder still but no wind, thank goodness. Q.M.S. goes to A Coy. as Sergt. Bert Hill acts his job. Still diggg. dug out & find it hard work though warming. Posted lres. to Ede & Katie.
Sat. 20 November 1915
Finished digging our new dug out but did not move in. Bought chocolate off Solomons at 11/-, regular war prices, indigestion pretty bad, gave 14/5 to Canteen stores from Imbros.
Sun. 21 November 1915
Moved into new dugout. Lres. from Edie & Bertie Vandipper. Was surprised to hear of his marriage. E.A.B. has sent money along at last it seems. New dugout cosy & warm. Called on Serg. James at Bde.
Mon. 22 November 1915
Awoke late & missed brekker but fell back on the Light Diet. Lres. to Rodd & Warby, also wrote to Em in eveng. Kinipple called on Monty & obtnd. some oil. Very cold but managed a shave with some hot water of Dawes. N. o W. from Ede.
Tues. 23 November 1915
Heard that Dr. Tebb. is made Lt. Col. Called on Monty & feasted on chocs. & Toffee. He is now Sergt. Chatted with Capt. Edwards re 1st Bn. S.O. commsn. & he is to speak to Major Coltman tomrw. Wrote to Ede.
Wed. 24 November 1915
Had a shave in boilg. water, what luxuries. Padre came back - fat as ever & no diminishg. voice. Posted lres. to Em & Ede. Someone purloind. a mag. out of D.out. No fluid for tea.
Thur. 25 November 1915
Stand to at 5.30 which I did but went to bed again owing to circes! Paid £2. Posted lre. to Bertie. Heard that Col. Mac was returng. Velly cold. New gag of silence begins, won 1/- at nap.
Fri. 26 November 1915
The silence gag continues & Abdul puts numerous shells on the beach indiscrimtly. Was to get extra pay but Capt. Fanning was too cold. Rained like Hell – cold as ice & thunderstorm. Lost 6/- at nap. Terrible.
Sat. 27 November 1915
Shaved & had a passable wash. Everythg. damp. Readg. Leroux’s "Phanton of Opera". Topping. Mud, mud everywhere. No extra pay yet. Plyd. nap in eveng. & came out square.
Sun. 28 November 1915
SNOW after five years without it. Ye Gods! Anzac at 95 in the shade was bad but at 25 its putrid. Added a note to Mann’s lre. about it. On duty & found it damned rotten. Hear that we are to get capes & boots.
Mon. 29 November 1915
Freezing! Stayed in bed nearly all day. Stand to after tea, lot of rot, posted lre. to Mann. Short rations of everythg. My God! I’m fed up with these conditions.
Tues. 30 November 1915
Dry & freezing. Kept to bunk as much as poss. Had an awful shave & the razor was agony. Reading Katie’s books muchly. Scored some light diet. Paid [indecipherable] £2
Wed. 1 December 1915
On duty – not so cold. Would appreciate a wash. Won 1/- in eveng. at nap. Called on Monty & got choc. & 10/- from Wayling (?) for goods from Eng. Oil ran out. Fed up completely!
Thur. 2 Decembr 1915
Port Said 1914.
Not so cold. Wrote to Ede re parcel & enclosed £1 & posted. Made slush Camp. Won 10/- at nap. Bot. chocolate off Campey. Rumors of being home in Aust.!
Fri., 3 December 1915
Weather much milder but my feet still pain from the effects of the snow & cold. Think it is childblains. Won 2/- at Banker & 11/- at nap. Am living quite a terrible life! No rations or. than B.B.B. How cheerful. A promise of McConachies tomrw.
Sat. 4 December 1915
One tin of McConachies each. What a luxury. Gen. Birdwood leaves for Amy Corps. Solomons goes to hosp. also Sam Brett. Boiled my McC. Ration & she went down well. Lost 3/6 at Banker. Bombardment of Achi Baba.
Sun. 5 December 1915
Anor. issue of McC., things are looking up. Continued lre. to Prington. Rumours of mail. Slush Camp broke & motive power ran out so could not have the usual read at night. Won 3/- at Solo.
Mon. 6 December 1915
Lres. from Rodd & Edna, answd. the former & finished Enid’s lre., issue of bread & meat after about 3 weeks without. Childblains painful, tho’ its mild. Kinipple drank wisely but not well. Did not play cards. Col. MA C. came back.
Tues. 7 December 1915
On duty. Reced. "De Rezkes" from Katie (100) & lres. from Millions Club & p.c’s from Alb of Mr. Thomas. Colder. Have yet to meet the Col. Lres. to Rodd. Many details rejoined. Canteen stores arrived – what of them there are.
Wed. 8 December 1915
Called on Monty with the De Reszkes. Bought a watch off him for 10/- - he lent his old one to Arther Dowell. Playd. an indifferent game of cards in eveng. Heard we were going into firg. line. Spoke to the Col.
Thur. 9 December 1915
Posted lres. to Ede, Katie & Millions & P.C. to Edna & Alb, got a lre. after all this time. Won tin Gooseberries off gift sweep. Inspected our future position in the firg. line. Did not play in eveng.
Fri. 10 December 1915
Bought sardines & salmon & candles off Maurer. Big bombardment by 3 cruisers & 2 monitors on the Olive Grove. Again visited our new trenches with Milner & arranged D. out. Expect to go in with the S. Major. Movg. order was cancelled at 7 p.m.
Sat. 11 December 1915
Find that we are to go to 7th L.H. instd. on 2nd Bn. Visited these trenches & made plan with Mr. Sheen. Rotten dug outs & rotten position. Reced. S.M. from Rodd. Slept badly. 35/- watch for Dowell.
Sun. 12 December 1915
Wolff told me that I was promoted to Arty. Corp with pay. Won 10/- at two-up. My promotion did not come out in orders. Plenty of shrapnel in Poppy Valley. Feet pretty bad.
Mon. 13 December 1915
Went on duty at 8.30 a.m. for D Coy. Was going to H.Q. but promotion not out yet. Order issued stoppg. mail being posted & none comg. in. Very cheerful. Ordnance Store opens as a free society & the 17th Bn. are supposed to be leaving!
Tues. 14 December 1915
Mail order cancelled & we can post lres. This was again altered & we CAN’T post lres.! Had tea in A.M.C. & heard later that we were to evacuate. Came out in orders of my promotion.
Wed. 15 December 1915
Moved down to H.Q. Saw Monty in morng. & obtaind. cigs., chocs. & C & C. Packg. up sigs. stores &c, don’t like leavg. without anor. go at Abdul! That is the general impression. Down to Beach with Sig. Stores at night. Lost 10/- at two-up!!
Thur. 16 December 1915
On duty all day & on phone at 1200 to 1600. Won 10/- at poker. First occasion of playing. "Dumped" numerous articles from my pack. Abdul was frightened durg. the night owing to our silence & let off many rounds. Won anor. 7/- at night.
Fri. 17 December 1915
Raining a bit in morning. Fixed up wires to the final ‘phone position. Everyone very "nervy". O.C. very erratic in his messages at night. I went on from 0000 to 0400.
Sat. 18 December 1915
Dr. Buckley’s Birthday.
L.H. supply depot is opened to the public & I got a good supply of Maconaghies etc. First batch from the Bn. left the Peninsula. Was apportioned off into eschelons. Col. drunk!
Sun. 19 December 1915
Phone was taken up to firg. line & I went on at 0800 to 1200. We evacuated Anzac & Suvla. I was in A party & left at dusk. Rest of Bn. left durg. night with only one casualty for whole Aust. Force. I came over to Lemnos on the "Abbassia" & had an indifferent sleep.
Mon. 10 December 1915
Arrived in Sarpi Camp at the new pier at 10 a.m. Signallers trodden on as usual & we don’t get a tent. Everythg. upside down & a very indifferent sleep at night. Dismal news from all the fronts. Evac. Salonkia?
Tues. 21 December 1915
Windy & rain later. Got miserably wet. Went to village & bought various edibles. Saw Monty later. Shaved & washed in eveng. Rumor of mail & Xmas pudd.! 19 in the tent & a Black Hole of Calcutta.
Wed. 22 December 1915
Parade at 10 a.m. & sig. instron. Returns etc. sent in. "Billies" issued. Saw Monty & Eric Wooster. Had tea with Jamieson at No. 2 General. Went over in new ferry. Wishg. for Xmas mail. Eat pineapple much.
Thur. 23 December 1915
Rumors of a quick leave, issue of Xmas pudding, paid £3. Had tea with Monty & played Bluff Poker after with the S.M. Numerous units leave & I hear we are for Suez. Won 10/-.
Fri. 24 December 1915
Left Sarpi at 9.30 & embarked on tug & reached "Simla" at 1300. First impression quite good. Very busy. Concert in eveng. Not bad. Played Bluff Poker etc. until 0400 Xmas morning in the Hospital.
Sat. 25 December 1915
Pretty good tucker for Xmas Dinner considering. Concert in eveng. Slept on deck. One of the visitg. blue jackets fell over-board. Quite a human document. Wrote letter card to donors of my billy. Thoughts of last & next Xmas.
Sun. 26 December 1915
Left Lemnos at 0400 with a mine sweeper in attendre. Readg. "Riddle of Sands". All through the Archipelago are trawlers & destroyers & we get a cruiser escort at night, wearg. lifebelts always.
Mon. 27 December 1915
Some swell which developed into some wind. Feelg. groggy but kept it down. Many went out to it! Slept on deck as usual & had a magnificent sleep. Was reprimanded for the sigs. being unshaven.
Tues. 28 December 1915
Managed to keep everything down until we reached Port Alex. at 1200. Laid in harbour but moved to wharf in eveng. 1st & 2nd Bns.
went entrained. Won 10/- at poker. Many rumours, probably Tel-el-Kebir.
Wed. 29 December 1915
Disembarked at 1200 & marched to camp next to H.A.C. on Mex Road, pitched tents. The sigs. get 2. Everybody very drunk except the Corp.
Thur. 30 December 1915
Posted lres. to Ede & Prington & a telegram to Prington. Couldn’t get leave so took it for 3 hrs. Everyone again blind drunk & I have a troublous time. Leavg. tomrw.
Fri. 31 December 1915
Everyone more or less drunk & we have a very indifferent march to Gabbary Station. Reached Tel-el-Kebir at about 1400. Many of our one star artistes reappear. Plenty of work. Saw Monty in eveng. Reced. few lres.
Date – Particulars – Received – Paid by
Nov. 30 – At Sea – 2.3.0 – Lloyd
Dec. 17 – Cairo – 2.0.0 – Lloyd
Dec. 24 – Cairo – 3.18.0 – Turner
Jan. 6 – Cairo – 2.2.0 – Simpson
Jan. 13 – Cairo – 13.4 – Simpson
Jan. 20 – Cairo – 13.4 – Simpson
Feb. 3 – Cairo – 1.6.8 – Simpson
Feb. 18 – Cairo – 1.6.8 – Simpson
Mar. 3 – Cairo – 1.6.8 – Simpson
Mar. 10 – Cairo – 13.4 – Simpson
Mar. 19 – Cairo – 13.4 – Simpson
Mar. 24 – Cairo – 13.4 – Storey
Mar. 31 – Cairo – 13.4 – Simpson
Apl. 9 – Lemnos – 3.0.0 – Simpson
May 19 – Mex Alex. – 1.0.7 – Milne
June 3 – Anzac, Gallipoli – 1.0.0 – Lloyd
July 16 – Anzac, Gallipoli – 1.0.0 – Lloyd
Sept. 21st – Lemnos – 10.0 – Simpson
Oct. 1st – Lemnos – 5.0.0 – Simpson
Oct. 26 – Lemnos – 10.0 – Fanning
Nov. 9 – Anzac – 10.0 – Fanning
Nov. 25 – Anzac – 2.0.0 – Fanning
Dec. 1 – Anzac – 2.0.0 – Fanning
Dec. 23 – Lemnos – 3.0.0 – Fanning
Jan. 7 – Tel-el-Kebir – 7.3.7 - Lehmair
Jan. 28 – Tel-el-Kebir – 4.2.2 – Judge
Jan. 17 – Tel-el-Kebir – 5.2.7 - Lehmair
18/2/16 – Tel-el-Kebir – 3.1.7 – Borlean
2/3/16 – Tel-el-Kebir – 1.0.6 – Single
15/3/16 – Tel-el-Kebir – 9.4.7 – Plomley
15/3/16 – Cable, Anzac – 2.9 – Base
18/3/16 – Credit – 6.0.0 – Base
18/3/16 – Cairo – 6.3.2 – Base
29/3/16 – Ferry Post – 15.7.6 – Lucas
Oct. 85.15.0 – divided by £6
Nov. – 30,078.0.0
Harry A. Mann
No. 19 General Hospital
No. 11, Anglo Belgian Hosp., Calais
Army P.O. 4
Frank P. Ray
29 Dunvegan Road
Bank of Syd.
Dr. E.A. Buckley
Lister Institute of Medicine
Pearce – 52
2 Sutherland St.
Mr. [or Mrs] Bartlett
284 Military Rd.
B.S. of N.S.W.
19 Rosenau Rd.
Dr K Ardill
c/o Commercial Bank of Syd
Miss M. Walker
Miss E. Gilbert
Miss E. Makeig
C/o Wellington Stores
Diary of L.V. Bartlett
Signaller, 4th Battn.
Achi Baba – misspelt as Acki Baba – Page 6
Colombo – misspelt as Columbo – Page 39
I.G.C. – Inspector General of Communications – Page 33]
[Transcribed by Judy Gimbert for the State Library of New South Wales]