Photo essay - Fighting in Timor 1942
Timor, November 1942. Soon after the Japanese moved into Timor, a young Australian technician, Signalman Joe Loveless, built a radio set powerful enough to reach the Australian mainland. When the Australians finally made contact with Australia, their identification was challenged. The signal officer receiving asked the name of the wife of Sergeant Jack Sargent. Fortuitously, the signaller who had first transmitted was Jack Sargent, and he was able to answer "Kathleen". Three of the Australian signallers are shown deep in the Timorese mountains with a radio set, "Winnie the War Winner". L to R: Signaller Keith Richards, Corporal John Donovan, Sergeant Jack Sargent. All belonged to 2/2nd Independent Company – part of Sparrow Force.
Timor, November 1942. Timorese greatly assisted Australians of Sparrow Force, regularly supplying food, giving directions and providing information on the Japanese. They carried equipment for the Australians and helped the wounded.
Timor, 9 December 1942. Men of Sparrow Force at the headquarters at Ailalec.
Timor, 9 December 1942. Australian guerrillas. Eric Herd of Sydney enjoys a meal of water buffalo and rice.
Timor, 9 December 1942. Australian guerrilla Lieutenant Gerry McKenzie.
Timor, 9 December 1942. Australian soldier with his creado or local helper.
Timor, 9 December 1942. An Australian patrol.
Timor, 9 December 1942. Australian soldiers with local Timorese leading a pack pony.
Timor, 9 December 1942. Locals bring in fresh fruit for Australian soldiers.
October 1942. A Lockheed Hudson bomber of the RAAF over the Timor Sea prior to an attack on enemy positions in Dili, Timor.
Timor, 12 December 1942. Australian sniper in action.
Timor, 12 December 1942. Australian troops. This is typical of the country over which the Australians fought.
Timor, 12 December 1942. Australians in the Timorese village of Mindello. The Australians burned the village to prevent its use as a base by the Japanese.
Coomalie Creek, Northern Territory, 20 January 1943. Crew members of 31 (Beaufighter) Squadron RAAF after returning from a mission over Timor.
At sea, en route to Timor, 8 September 1945. Captain A.D. Stevenson, officer in charge of the Services Reconnaissance Section, Timforce, with troopers Francesca da Silva and Celestino dos Anjos, and Alexandre da Silva. Francesca da Silva and Celestino dos Anjos were important figures during the 1942 resistance against the Japanese and were evacuated to Australia for training with Z Special Unit. They are on board the minesweeper HMAS Parkes as part of Timforce, which supervised the transition from Japanese occupation.
Koepang, Timor, 2 October 1945. Twenty-six Javanese women liberated from Japanese brothels. Just prior to their release, the Japanese issued the women with Red Cross armbands in an attempt to cover up the manner in which these women had been used. The young woman pictured is holding a doll she kept throughout her ordeal.
Mape, Timor, 12 December 1945. Mautasi, seen here with chef de posto Jose Garrido (chief of Mape Administrative Centre), was shot and wounded by the Japanese because he had assisted Australians. He owed his survival to the efforts of Captain C.R. Dunkley, medical officer of the 2/2nd Independent Company.
Timor, 10 November 1945. This boy, called Fernando, was bayoneted by the Japanese during their occupation of Timor. When the Australians returned in 1945, they kitted him out with a slouch hat, rifle and webbing.
Dili, Timor, 12 January 1945. Sergeant Milsom had served with Sparrow Force in 1942 and returned to the island in 1945 with the Military History Section field team. Milsom is seen reunited with Manuberi, his creado from 1942.
Dili, Timor, 9 December 1945. Lequi assisted the Australians first as creado to Lieutenant Ellwood, 2/2nd Independent Company, and then as a carrier of a radio set for Z Special Unit operatives. Lequi was wounded by the Japanese at Bacau in September 1942.
Dili, Timor, 9 December 1945. Jose Eduardo de Abreu de Silva Marques (“Joe”), seen with Sergeant Milson, Military History Section field team, reminisce over a map drawn by Milson in 1942 when he was serving with the 2/2nd Independent Company. “Joe”, as he was known to Australian troops, had assisted Milson in recording the positions of Japanese troops.
Betano, Timor, 15 December 1945. With the wreck of HMAS Voyager in the background, Sergeant Milsom, Military History Section field team, and Jacob, who had assisted the Australians against the Japanese, discuss the location of the evacuation of the 2/2nd Independent Company in 1942.
Betano, Timor, 15 December 1945. These two men, Sergeant K. Davis, photographer with the Military History Section, and Lieutenant C. Bush, official war artist, came to Timor in 1945 to record the war efforts of the Australians and the Timorese. Behind lies the wreck of HMAS Voyager.
Darwin, Northern Territory, 3 March 1946. A member of the Japanese garrison on Timor, now in captivity, repairs part of the compound built to intern suspected war criminals.