Thursday 17 April 2014 by David Heness. No comments.
First World War Centenary, ANZAC Connections, Collection, Personal Stories

Private Cecil Anthony McAnulty was barely able to stand. Exhausted from the intense fighting of the previous two days, he used a brief period of respite to pen his experiences of the past few days to paper. Cecil had written in his diary every day since he had left Australia. When he had completely filled his first diary he began a second, writing on whatever scraps of paper he could find and often using the backs of envelopes sent from home. For many soldiers writing helped them make sense of what was happening.

Two days earlier, on the afternoon of 6 August 1915, Cecil had been one of the nearly two thousand men of the 1st Australian Infantry Brigade to charge the Turkish trenches at Lone Pine. He had waited anxiously as the Turkish shells exploded before them, the fumes suffocating and the shrapnel deadly. The whistle had blown three times and Cecil and the others had charged towards the formidable and entrenched Turkish line. He was in the thick of it now. In what he described as a trance, Cecil pushed through the heavy machine gun and rifle fire with shrapnel shells bursting around him. Having crossed the nearly one hundred metre wide gap to the Turkish lines he found himself in an extremely exposed position along with several other Australians. “This is only suicide, boys,” Cecil exclaimed to them. “I’m going to make a jump for it.” Cecil’s account of what happened next ends mid-sentence with the words: “I sprang to my feet in one jump…” There are no further entries after that.

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Wednesday 16 April 2014 by Robyn Van Dyk. No comments.
First World War Centenary, ANZAC Connections, Personal Stories

Bringing historic documents from the Australian War Memorial’s archive to all Australians

The first 150 collections of private records related to individuals who served in the First World War are now online and hold a wealth of stories. In the centenary year of the First World War, the Memorial has launched one of its major commemorative projects to make available the rare historic personal records of Australians who served.

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Tuesday 4 February 2014 by Craig Tibbitts. 6 comments.
First World War Centenary, Collection, Collection Highlights, ANZAC Voices, Personal Stories

This article was originally published in Inside History Magazine, Issue 20, Jan - Feb 2014. Find out more and subscribe to Inside History here.

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Monday 3 February 2014 by Gabrielle Considine. No comments.
First World War Centenary, Collection, Collection Highlights Sound Collection Online

The Australian War Memorial has remarkable hidden stories in its sound collection. This compilation of interview extracts reveals the lucky escapes of five men that served during the First World War. These men suffered wounds, sickness and witnessed the horrific casualties of war. They describe themselves to be the lucky ones.

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Monday 20 January 2014 by Nick Crofts. 6 comments.
First World War Centenary, ANZAC Connections

The Australian War Memorial is currently undertaking a project to create a comprehensive digital archive of the ANZACs and their deeds, and of the wider Australian experience of war.  The collections are selected from our extensive archives and reflect the experiences of Australian servicemen, nurses and civilians during the First World War, not just well-known personalities. This project will digitally preserve the Memorial’s collections as well as provide full copies for research on the Memorial’s website.

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Friday 20 December 2013 by Theresa Cronk. 2 comments.
First World War Centenary, ANZAC Connections, News, Personal Stories

On 20 December 1915, Private John Kingsley Gammage of the 1st Infantry Battalion wrote in his diary, This concludes a real experience that money could not buy with an enemy that fought fairly and clean. Gammage was one of the last 10 000 Australian troops remaining at Anzac Cove. These men departed Anzac Cove during the night of Sunday 19 December through into the early hours of Monday 20 December 1915. The preparations for their departure had been carefully planned down to the finest details.

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Thursday 19 December 2013 by Robyn Van Dyk. No comments.
First World War Centenary, ANZAC Connections, Collection, Exhibitions, ANZAC Voices

 I would not have joined this contingent if I had known that they were not going to England.

                                           Private John Simpson, 3rd Field Ambulance, Christmas Day 1914


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Friday 13 December 2013 by Robyn Siers. 10 comments.
Education at the Memorial, First World War Centenary

"It is the hospital ship, with its Red Cross flag flying aloft, that stands as the one humane agency in the midst of the horrors of modern naval warfare."

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Thursday 12 December 2013 by Dianne Rutherford. No comments.
First World War Centenary, Collection, ANZAC Voices Gallipoli, Improvisation

Some of the objects on display in the new ANZAC voices exhibition illustrate the ingenuity of the ANZACs when faced with insufficient supplies and equipment at Gallipoli. When the ANZACs landed there on 25 April 1915, they expected a quick advance to Constantinople [Istanbul] so did not carry the equipment or supplies they needed for trench warfare. Although supplies were brought in throughout the campaign by boat, these could be delayed or destroyed through bad weather or Turkish shelling, so the soldiers at Gallipoli had to be industrious and inventive. They made weapons, equipment, board games and stationary from the items they found around them.

G00267 Two soldiers sit beside a pile of empty tins cutting up barbed wire for jam tin bombs. G00267

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This sound reel features Australian soldiers from the First World War recalling memories of recruitment and enlistment.

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