Rising Sun collar badge : Pope's Hill, Gallipoli

Accession Number REL/01622.002
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Badge
Physical description Oxidised brass
Maker Unknown
Place made Australia
Date made c 1914-1915
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Slightly damaged Rising Sun collar badge with two lugs, each with a small split pin for attachment. The badge is coated in dried mud and a little verdigris.

History / Summary

This badge was found to the right of Pope's Hill, near the Bloody Angle on 7 January 1919 by Lieutenant William Hopkin James, who was working on Gallipoli, leading a small party from the Australian War Records Section, taking photographs and collecting items for the national collection. It is associated with the fighting that took place from The Nek to Quinn's Post on 2/3 May 1915.

On 2 May the 16th Battalion was ordered to the front line, to the left of Quinn's Post, where they were to advance to a position which was later called the Bloody Angle. The 13th Bn was to extend its line to the left, joining with the New Zealand Otago Bn, who were to attack Baby 700. The 15th Bn were to take part from Pope's Hill.

The attack took place in the evening of 2 May. The 16th Bn made their way up the steep side of the valley, towards the Bloody Angle. The Turks held their fire until the battalion reached the top of the ridge, then directed heavy fire upon it, mostly from their positions at The Nek and the Chessboard. Unable to advance further, the battalion dug in, extending the trench line from Quinn's Post.

During the attack the Otago Bn failed to reach their objective at Baby 700 and were forced to dig in near The Nek. The 13th Bn positioned themselves on the other side of the gully, to the left of the 16th Bn, but each battalion was uncertain of the other's location and could not join up.

At dawn on 3 May, the New Zealanders withdrew under heavy fire and the Turks occupied their line. Although attempts were made to reinforce the 16th Bn, with men from the Royal Marine Light Infantry, Turkish fire made it impossible to reach them. The battalion gradually withdrew through the day, and the Turks took over their trench line. Having lost support from both their left and right flanks, the 13th Bn then withdrew during the night.

This badge came from the uniform of a man from one of the Australian battalions that took part. As it was found to the right of Pope's Hill it was probably from the uniform of a man from the 13th Battalion, although it could also have come from a member of the 15th Battalion.