Shrapnel Valley Cemetery Plan

Shrapnel Valley cemetery map

G7432.G1 S65 XXVIII.1c

Shrapnel Valley Cemetery (also known as Shrapnel Gully Cemetery, Military Burial Ground or West Monash Valley Cemetery) is the largest of the original cemeteries at ANZAC (Lone Pine Cemetery contains more burials but it was created after the war). It was established at the head of Shrapnel Valley, near a major thoroughfare to the front line. This plan shows the cemetery as it was laid out in 1915, before the evacuation of ANZAC in December.

After the evacuation the crosses were used for firewood by the remaining Turks and the cemetery vanished from view. When Pope Benedict XV sent an envoy to check on the cemeteries in 1916, the Turkish War Office remade Shrapnel Valley Cemetery so it appeared to be well-tended. They created burial mounds with rock borders, but these mounds did not match the direction of the original graves underneath. In 1919, when the Graves Registration Unit tried to find the graves, this plan of the cemetery helped them locate the general positions and directions of the graves underneath the remade cemetery.

Few changes were made to the layout of the cemetery after the war. Some isolated graves in Shrapnel Valley were moved to this cemetery, but generally the layout of the cemetery today is the same as it was in 1915.