Grave cross made from kerosene tin : Corporal D McVay, 23 Battalion AIF
|Title||Grave cross made from kerosene tin : Corporal D McVay, 23 Battalion AIF|
|Place made||Ottoman Empire: Turkey, Dardanelles, Gallipoli|
|Date made||September 1915|
|On display||Main building: First World War Gallery: The Anzac Story|
Cross shaped metal plate, made from a kerosene tin. The inscription is recorded in raised detail and reads: 'In / Memory / of / No 1243 / Cpl D McVay / (Yank) / D Coy / 23 Batt / A.I.F. / Killed / in / Action / 13/9/15'. The cross has an overall dark brown patina of (inert) rust, and numerous small holes and tears in its outer edges, where it was originally attached to a wooden support.
This plate from a grave cross for Corporal David 'Yank' McVay, along with one for Private Charles Hampson (RELAWM00426.001), was recovered at Gallipoli by Captain Gordon Samuel Keesing in 1919. Keesing was an assistant to Sir John Burnet, the architect tasked with the design of the permanent cemeteries at Gallipoli. Originally the plate was attached to a wooden cross. However, the cross was probably used as fire wood by Turkish soldiers or civilians after the evacuation, as wood was a scarce commodity in the area. The plate was removed from the cross and left in the cemetery.