Beevor, Miles Fitzroy (Lieutenant Colonel, b.1883 - d.1961)

Places
Accession Number MSS0761
Collection type Manuscript
Measurement Extent: 1; Wallet/s: 1
Object type Manuscript
Maker Beevor, Miles Fitzroy
Place made Australia, Ottoman Empire: Turkey, Dardanelles, Gallipoli
Date made 1915-1930
Access Open
Related File This file can be copied or viewed via the Memorial’s Reading Room. AWM315 419/111/002
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918
Copying Provisions Copying is permitted for the purposes of research and study, subject to physical condition
Description

Collection relating to the First World War service of Lieutenant Colonel Miles Fitzroy Beevor, 10th Infantry Battalion, Turkey, 1915.

Collection consists of a bound and typed duplicated version of Beevor's c.1930 personal account of 10th Battalion's landing at Gallipoli, with the title "My Landing on Gallipoli" written in fountain pen on the cover. The manuscript spans the period of late on the 24th to the morning of the 26th April 1915, discussing Beevor's movements from being aboard the SS Ionan, his arrival on Gallipoli, through to his re-boarding the Ionan on the 26th after have sustained a bullet wound to the foot.

The diary begins with the companies that Beevor was in charge of being transferred from the Ionan to the British Destroyers HMS Foxhound and HMS Scourge at midnight. He then documents the journey towards Gallipoli, including a conversation he had with the commander of the Foxhound about arriving in the wrong place and the commander's insistence that they continue despite having confused Ari Burnu for Gaba Tepe. Beevor also discusses the methods of towing landing crafts to shore.

Upon his arrival at the beach, Beevor discusses finding other Australian soldiers who had been dispersed across the beach and other officers' realisation that they had landed at the wrong beach and their confusion about what to do. Following an authoritative decision to press on and entrench on the hills (which includes discussion of the Turkish sniping tactics and how Australian soldiers countered these), Beevor discusses how the men under his command began digging trenches and establishing themselves. He then discusses early action with Turkish soldiers, including the death of a Major Edward Castle Oldham.

The remaining half of the account discusses a gunshot wound that Beevor sustains to this foot when lying just in front of the Australian trenches, owing to his ankle being incorrectly positioned. Following this injury, Beevor makes his way back to the beach in a rather haphazard way, limping to a makeshift casualty clearing area just behind the front. Then, together with two soldiers, they spend the rest of the night contending with the natural surroundings at the beach, including steep hills and mud. When reaching the beachfront, Beevor notes the speed at which the Australian engineers had already established a road, just 24 hours after landing. After having reached the beach, Beevor discusses being placed in a staging area where he is fed, and then put aboard a small boat to be towed out to a hospital ship. However, owing to the large amount of casualties, it takes many attempts before finding a ship that will accept Beevor and the other wounded men. Finally after trying all the nearest ships, Beevor spots the Ionan and insists that they take him there. It is aboard this ship that Beevor and his fellow wounded are readily accepted. The account then ends with Beevor being taken care of aboard the Ionan by his former crew mates.