Tag - WW1

Gongs and Cartoons

With Remembrance Day just days away and a burgeoning interest in all things 'Great War’, it's worth spending a minute on nicknames that are given to campaign medals. During and after World War 1, the commonly-awarded medals didn't escape the typical Commonwealth military sense of amusement, with popular cartoon characters of the day manifesting themselves in honours and awards. From the Regimental Museum of the Royal Welsh, comes this timely explanation: "PIP, SQEAK and WILFRED’ are the nicknames given to the...

Moudros Agreement Signed

30 OCT 1918: World War I and an Armistice is in place with Turkey The Armistice signed with Turkey, is enacted today ending Turkish involvement in the First World War. Australian troops had taken a prominent part in the war against the Ottoman empire, especially on Gallipoli and in Sinai-Palestine. The Armistice of Mudros (Turkish: Mondros Mütarekesi), concluded today, ended the hostilities, at noon the next day, in the Middle Eastern theatre between the Ottoman Empire and the Allies of...

Conscription in World War I

28 OCT 1916: World War I and the first conscription referendum is held. Dismayed by heavy losses at Fromelles and Pozières on the Western Front, Prime Minister Billy Hughes proposed that conscription be introduced for overseas service. The proposal was defeated, despite Prime Minister Hughes proposing raising the numbers needed to maintain Australian troops at full strength at the Front by conscripting those who to date were unwilling or opposed to enlisting to fight. The government already had the power under...

Battle of Poelcappelle Today

10 OCT 1917: World War I and the Battle of Poelcappelle, on the Western Front takes place. Australian divisions continued to attack in the third battle of Ypres. The attack on Poelcappelle, launched amid heavy rain, was to cost 1250 casualties for no gain of ground. Also called the first battle of Passchendaele, the battle of Poelcappelle was launched with the ridge upon which Passchendaele stood as its objective. Like earlier battles in the Ypres offensive, the aim of the...

James Woods, VC

18 SEP 1918: World War I and Private James Park Woods, 48th Battalion, originally from Gawler, South Australia, earns the Victoria Cross at Le Viguier. James Woods, the son of a blacksmith, was born at Two Wells, South Australia on 4 January 1886. He was raised by a stepsister after the death of his parents and after completing his schooling, worked on an orchard alongside his brothers. Of short stature (163 cm or 5 ft 4 ins), an attempt to...

Maurice Buckley, DCM, VC

18 SEP 1918: World War I and Sergeant Maurice Vincent Buckley, DCM, 13th Battalion, originally from Hawthorn, Victoria, earns the Victoria Cross at Le Verguier. Buckley was born at Upper Hawthorn, Melbourne, Australia, to Timothy Buckley, brickmaker, and his wife Agnes, née Sexton. His father was a native of Cork, Ireland; his mother was Victorian-born. Maurice Buckley was educated at the Christian Brothers’ School in Abbotsford. He joined the 13th Light Horse Regiment on 18 December 1914 shortly after the outbreak...

Australians Attack Hindenburg Line

18 SEP 1918: World War I and the Australians attack the Hindenburg Line. The 1st and 4th Australian divisions were successful in breaching the forward edge of the main German defensive line across the Picardy region of France. The Hindenburg Line was a formidable series of defences constructed by the German Army in northern France in late 1916 to which they had withdrawn in early 1917. After their spring offensive of 1918, the Germans incorporated the old British trenches facing the...

First Submarine Lost

14 SEP 1914: World War I and HMA Submarine AE1 is lost off New Guinea. The AE1 and AE2 were the first submarines to serve with the Royal Australian Navy. The AE1 disappeared without trace during operations for the capture of German New Guinea. In 1914 the Australian government took possession of two new submarines, HMAS AE1 and HMAS AE2, from Great Britain for just over £105,000 each. These submarines were experimental, top-secret craft. At just over 54 metres long...

ANMEF Lands In PNG

11 SEP 1914: World War I and the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force lands at Rabaul, New Guinea. The Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force landed at Rabaul and went into action at Bita Paka. This was the only major New Guinea action of the First World War. Bita Paka was a small radio station established shortly after the start of the war in the Kaiserwilhelmsland portion of German New Guinea. The German South Seas Wireless Company originally planned...

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