|Place||Oceania: Australia, New South Wales, Greta|
|Date made||c 1940|
Second World War, 1939-1945
Signed Union Jack: Private Donald John Tisdale, 2/3 Battalion
Signed and annotated Union Jack with Rising Sun badge pinned to centre. The text includes:
Top left quadrant (canton): 2YDUNION JACK [2 Yard Union Jack]; TOP; CPL. J. CLIFTON NX7858; H ALLEN COUNT; E.C.DICKENS A 6 M 2/7; GOD SPEED. / I KNOW THAT MAN ; X Sgt. W. BEATON; B. OUTRAM 2/3; SCOTTY MURTY; SUMDALE NX13967; I. H. HANSELL NARRANdERA; H MICHELL 3 BTN; Hickson(?) 2/3 (?); T. BROAD; SCARLETT O’HARA 3RD BN; TO(?); Doggie WESTERN / STEAM HUT; R H PEARN NX13080; NX1???3 [illegible]; I F???R?K; F. BRITTON; P.J.(CURLY) CUMMINS 2/3 BN; G MORGAN; A.V.ALLSO; A BENTLEY Canowindra; U/A/SJT S.P.A. ?/LN?TS A.A.Q.?; NX1024(?) W.WEBB; Powders A. Davis 2/3 Bn; E A DUNN 3 BAT?; STEPMD(?) COO-EE DAVIDSON OF THE FIGHTING 3RDS; E. F. SMITHERS; 2/3 PTE T. PALFREYMAN BACK TO WOLLONGONG; S. ABELL; JOE. Edwards “Palooka; R TAMP?; ? J TISDALE TASSY; A. R. LAURIE Gloucester; P SMITH; F MURRAY Mt GEO??; P K BRIMSTONE TAREE
Top right quadrant (canton): T J MILLER; MENACE BURNS; GLAMOUR MURRAY; NX5458 POP MORGAN; J. C. SEARLE. NX7987; T. SOUTTER THE ROOTER 3RD BATT; A DONOVAN 3RD; PTE J. WINDLEY 3RD; SPEEDY DAYDO; E.O BERG; NX13025 A.W.SEWARD [illegible]; NX 7858 J. CLIFTON; W. PLENDERLEITH SCOTTY; NX4500 BILL GRANT; PTE J ? O’BRIEN LOST ? SEA; NX BROWNLEE ALBION PARK; R TAMPLIN NX11103 FAIRFIELD; SN R WATTERSON AANS; M ROSS Bellingen; N.LLOYD; PTE J H BRIEN DAPTO 2/3; Pte W. H. Evrett(?) Geelong Vic; Shorty(?); J. H. WALKER; SGT SSR SEYMOUR B COY; E. ELLIS S/S STEAMO’S; Pte M. P. TUSSUP Ex. STEAMO 2/3 Bn 2/AIF; PTE ? BERTIE NEWTOWN; RIT MADDEN; PTE JACK McDON???; ?. MACK??; J. MACKIE; BULL ANDERSON; WALLA?? BE??? DOYLE
Lower left quadrant (canton): P. FITTOCK LISMORE; R. CHANDLER PICTON; W02 WARNOCK(?) 1ST AUST CON ???; T.P. “BALDY” GRAHAM 2/S “STEAMO”; R.J. WEIR 2/3 BAT; JACK HUTLEY “(HOT)”; J V MATHER; N?20608/2/11; SGT. H. E. KING THE GEH?NOGH KID; SGT. H. BARRACLOUGH “SLOPEHOPE”; BILL WRIGHT 2/1 BN NX7200; CPL J. T. MAY ORIGINAL; E DREDGE PICTON; ? DELANEY WEST WYALONG; [illegible green ink]; SERGEANT MACLEAN; F TAMPLIN NX28631; 165 A.C.T.; W.O. REANEY; PACANNINO “Gaiffeth”(?) [illegible] BN; TOGO HAYDON NX13637; F.W.TAYLOR NX 15099 2/IST BTN; LH BUTLER NX13538; SGT. G.L. CONYARD 2/3 30/9/40
Lower right quadrant (canton): I. R. ALLAN NX11409 2/3 BN; D.W. MURRAY NX11743 2/3 BN; MIDNIGHT. McFARLANE. NX11336 (2/3rd) KINGS CROSS; YARK. ARMSTRONG. G. NX11344. 2/3rd CLOVELLY; ARMSTRONG. S. PLOWRY. SID. NX11345 CLOVELLY; PTE W. E. ADDISON NX11311 ERSKINEVILLE; SNOWY WOOD 2/3 GUILDFORD; E V HAYWOOD; E BURGES NX13545 [illegible]; Cpl K Crawford CONDIE ASS. VX2135; LT. C. W. HILDEBRANDT. 2/3.Bn NX4882; NX4588 SGT. E. J. MORGAN 2/3 BN.; F. PERRITT 3rd; M FAKHRY AANS; [2 lines illegible]; 433721 F/S FITZGIBBON 460 SQN; S/? L A SINCLAIR; [illegible] LAC CROSS [illegible] N[illegible]6; WO WASER 1ST [illegible] CONV DEPOT AIF; NX13049 PTE E. GALLOWAY; TODD M. NX4909 2/3 BN LIDCOMBE; E. ?. [illegible] NX.15??? ?EEZIL BURD?; R.W. STEPHENSON NX13091; AW Macdonald NX 13206; E.E.Duncan TINY. NX13234
Lower cross arm: N STANLEY NX4724 2/3 BTN; G E CORY M.C.,D.C.M 2/3 Aust Inf Bn NX7864; N G COOKE NX5431 2/3 BN
Born in Petersham, New South Wales in 1911, Donald John Tisdale was living in Figtree and working for Lysaghts in Woollongong when he enlisted in the AIF on 24 April 1940. Assigned a private to reinforcements for 2/3rd Battalion, service number NX13067, Tisdale undertook his basic infantry training at the Greta Camp in the Hunter Valley. He either took with him, or acquired at Greta, this Union flag, which was signed by members of his reinforcements unit, and later by Australians on the troopship taking him to the Middle East, as well as men serving in the Libyan campaign in North Africa. Tisdale's battalion was sent to Greece in April 1941, but before he left for this ill-fated campaign, he sent his flag home to his mother. He was captured by the Germans on 21 June and transported first to Stalag XVIIIA at Wolfsberg in Australia. Reports of his capture in the Australian press noted that the flag was now 'the treasured possession of his mother'.
Tisdale was later transferred to Stalag XVIIID (also called Stalag 306) at Maribor in what was then German occupied Yugoslavia. He escaped from the camp in 1945 and was reported safe in Yugoslavia on 22 February. He arrived at the Allied Prisoner of War Reception Unit in Italy on 5 March and from there was sent to England on 1 April. Tisdale was repatriated to Australia and discharged in July 1945. Reunited with his flag he appears to have acquired a small number of additional signatures in 1945 or 1946.
Following the disastrous Greece and Crete campaigns, a number of the men, like Tisdale, became prisoners of war of the Germans. Identified POWs on the flag include:
'J TISDALE TASSY' - NX13067 Private Donald John Tisdale
'A. V. ALLSO' - NX13148 Private Aubrey Vincent Allso
'A. R. LAURIE' – probably NX11655 L/Cpl Alexander Robert Laurie
'R TAMPLIN NX11103 FAIRFIELD' – Driver Raymond Leslie Tamplin
'F TAMPLIN NX28631' – Driver Francis John Tamplin
'TOGO HAYDON NX13637' – Private John Sylvester Haydon
'F. W. TAYLOR NX15099' - Private Frank William Taylor
'SGT. G.L. CONYARD 2/3 30/9/40' - Sergeant Gilbert Lawrence Conyard
'D.W. MURRAY NX11743 2/3 BN' - Private Richard William Murray
Those that did not survive the war include:
'S. ABELL' - probably NX13032 Sydney William Edward Abell, killed in action at Crete, 1 June 1941
'LT. C. W. HILDEBRANDT. 2/3.Bn NX4882' - Lieutenant Charles William Hildebrandt, killed in action in Syria, 27 June 1941
'Cpl K Crawford CONDIE ASS. VX2135' - Corporal (later Sergeant) Kenneth Crawford Condie, died of illness in Palestine, 4 Sept 1941.
'B. OUTRAM 2/3' - probably NX11940 Private Brian Hugh Outram, killed in action in New Guinea, 24 October 1942.
'J H WALKER' - possibly NX12875 A/Cpl Jeffrey Haggard Delabare Walker, died of wounds at Papua, 7 Nov 1942.
Others went on to be recognised for their gallantry including:
'NX5458 POP MORGAN' - Corporal Walter Morgan awarded the Military Medal for gallantry in the capture of Fort Goybet near Damascus from the Vichy French on 21 June 1941.
'MIDNIGHT. McFARLANE. NX11336 (2/3rd) KINGS CROSS' - NX11336 Private Ernest Roy McFarlane who was awarded the Military Medal for his actions Eora Creek, New Guinea in 1942.
'G E CORY M.C.,D.C.M 2/3 Aust Inf Bn NX7864' - Sergeant Gilbert Ernest Cory who was Mentioned in Dispatches for his conduct in the Middle East, awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his actions on the Kokoda Track in 1942, and later as an officer was awarded the Military Cross for his courage and leadership near Danmap, New Guinea, in 1945.