Unidentified members of the 13th and 14th Battalions share their last minutes in Australia as ...

Accession Number PB1086
Collection type Photograph
Object type Black & white - Glass original half plate negative
Maker Barnes, Josiah
Place made Australia: Victoria, Melbourne, Port Melbourne
Date made 22 December 1914
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918
Copyright

Item copyright: Copyright expired - public domain

Public Domain Mark This item is in the Public Domain

Description

Unidentified members of the 13th and 14th Battalions share their last minutes in Australia as they wait on the deck of the transport ship A38 HMAT Ulysses; for some it would be the last look on home soil as they would never return. The moment seems almost anticlimactic as the families and friends of the soldiers stand on the wharf waiting for the ship to pull away. A soldier (right) stands guard on the gangway, his rifle fixed with a bayonet, preventing any soldier returning to the wharf. Commanding the 4th Infantry Brigade, Colonel John Monash left on this ship, yet to acquire fame as commander of the 1st Australian Corps. General Monash commanded the 5th Australian Division, and was knighted on the battlefield by King George V for his role in the significant victories on the Western Front. Monash was one of 24 men of the 4th Infantry Brigade Headquarters and a total of 2113 men leaving on this ship. Soldiers can be seen carrying Australian flags, smoking, smiling at loved ones on the wharf. In this case there is almost a sense of disengagement as they wait for the moment of departure. The soldiers are aware of themselves and their families, but almost ignore each other.

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