Biography

Birth date: 11 January 1897
Birth place: Australia: New South Wales, Newcastle, Jesmond
Death date: 20 April 1971
Death place: Australia: New South Wales, Sydney, Mosman
Final rank: Major General
Service number: 432 - First World War, 1914-1918
NX70416 - Second World War, 1939-1945
Units:
  • 27th Australian Infantry Brigade
  • 2/30th Australian Infantry Battalion

Frederick Galleghan was a Second World War battalion commander, who won acclaim and respect as the commander of Australian prisoners in Changi. He was born on 11 January 1897 at Jesmond, New South Wales, completed his schooling in Newcastle, and became a telegraph messenger in the Postmaster-General's Department.

He had been in the cadets for seven years when, in January 1916, he enlisted in the AIF and was posted to the 34th Battalion. He was wounded twice while serving on the Western Front, was invalided home in late 1918, and was discharged in March 1919, disappointed that he had not received a commission.

Galleghan married Vera Dawson in 1922. He worked in a variety of public service positions before joining the Attorney General's office in 1936. In the meantime he had been serving in the militia, having been commissioned as a lieutenant in 1919. By 1932 he had been promoted to lieutenant colonel and in subsequent years commanded a succession of battalions. He joined the AIF on 18 March 1940 and in October took command of the 2/30th Battalion.

The unit sailed for Singapore in July 1941; in January 1942 Galleghan led a successful ambush against a superior Japanese force at Gemas in southern Malaya. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order but became a prisoner of war after the surrender of Singapore. In Changi in August 1942 he became commander of AIF prisoners; in March 1944 he became deputy commander of Allied prisoners in Malaya.

He was given the name "Black Jack" for his complexion, dark hair, and brown eyes. He was a stern figure with a natural air of authority that brooked no dissent. Some officers claimed to have feared Galleghan more than they did the Japanese. Nevertheless he is said to have been a respected leader who understood that his men's survival depended on their morale, which he maintained through the imposition of military discipline.

After liberation he told his men that they were returning home as soldiers not prisoners and subsequently refused to be associated with prisoner-of-war organisations. He was promoted to colonel and honorary brigadier, made retrospective to 1942, and transferred to the retired list in January 1946.

Galleghan headed the Australian Military Mission to Germany in 1948-49 as an honorary major general and became involved in helping displaced persons to immigrate to Australia. He retired from the public service in 1959 and served as honorary secretary of the Royal Humane Society of New South Wales between 1959-70. He also worked with both the Services Canteens Trust and Australian Cadet Corps during his retirement.

In 1969 Galleghan was knighted for his services to veterans and married for a second time. He died on 20 April 1971 in Mosman, Sydney.

Rolls and Awards

First World War Embarkation Roll

  • Rank: Private
  • Date of embarkation: 02 May 1916
  • Place of embarkation: Sydney

Second World War POWs and Missing Persons

  • Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
  • Unit: 2/30th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Theatre of war: Malaya

Honours and Awards : Mention in despatches

  • Unit: 2/30th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Honours and Awards : Officer of the Order of the British Empire

  • Unit: 27th Australian Infantry Brigade
  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Honours and Awards : Distinguished Service Order

  • Unit: 2/30th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Photograph

011304/04

GEMAS, MALAYA. 1942. LIEUTENANT COLONEL FREDERICK G. "BLACK JACK" GALLEGHAN, COMMANDING OFFICER 2/30TH BATTALION (RIGHT), EXAMINING A MAP WITH SERGEANT HECKENDORF (LEFT), INTELLIGENCE SERGEANT, OUTSIDE THE BATTALION COMMAND POST.

011304/04

043910

CHANGI, SINGAPORE, 1943-01-26. A CEREMONIAL PARADE WAS HELD ON SELARANG BARRACK SQUARE, CHANGI, TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY, 1943. MEMBERS OF 27 INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LT-COL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LT-COL F.G. GALLEGHAN, COMMANDER AIF PW'S, WHO ORGANISED THE...

043910

043911

CHANGI, SINGAPORE, 1943-01-26. A CEREMONIAL PARADE WAS HELD ON SELARANG BARRACK SQUARE, CHANGI, TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY, 1943. MEMBERS OF 27 INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LT-COL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LT-COL F.G. GALLEGHAN, COMMANDER AIF PW'S, WHO ORGANISED THE...

043911

043916

CHANGI, SINGAPORE, 1943-01-26. A CEREMONIAL PARADE WAS HELD ON SELARANG BARRACK SQUARE, CHANGI, TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY, 1943. MEMBERS OF 27 INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LT-COL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LT-COL F.G. GALLEGHAN, COMMANDER AIF PW'S, WHO ORGANISED THE...

043916

043917

CHANGI, SINGAPORE, 1943-01-26. A CEREMONIAL PARADE WAS HELD ON SELARANG BARRACK SQUARE, CHANGI, TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY, 1943. MEMBERS OF 27 INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LT-COL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LT-COL F.G. GALLEGHAN, COMMANDER AIF PW'S, WHO ORGANISED THE...

043917

043921

CHANGI, SINGAPORE, 1943-01-26. A CEREMONIAL PARADE WAS HELD ON SELARANG BARRACK SQUARE, CHANGI, TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY, 1943. MEMBERS OF 27 INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LT-COL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LT-COL F.G. GALLEGHAN, COMMANDER AIF PW'S, WHO ORGANISED THE...

043921

116877

MOROTOI, 1945-09-12. BRIGADIER C.A. CALLAGHAN, 8TH DIVISION RECOUNTING HIS EXPERIENCES AS A PRISONER OF WAR OF THE JAPANESE DURING A PRESS CONFERENCE AT ADVANCED LAND HEADQUARTERS. IDENTIFIED PERSONNEL ARE:- NX111333 LT GERALD PYNT, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC RELATIONS, HEADQUARTERS 1 AUSTRALIAN...

116877

117115

SINGAPORE, STRAITS SETTLEMENTS, 1945-09-20. LIEUT-COL C.H. KAPPE, CHIEF OF STAFF, AUSTRALIAN IMPERIAL FORCE PRISONERS OF WAR - MALAYA (1), MAJOR N. MCG. JOHNSTON, ADMINISTRATIVE COMMAND, 2/30 AUSTRALIAN INFANTRY BATTALION (2) AND LIEUT-COL FREDERICK (BLACK JACK) G. GALLEGHAN, DSO, ED, COMMANDING...

117115

117117

Colonel E B Holmes, commander of British and Australian POWs, Malaya (1) with Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Gallagher Galleghan, DSO, ED, Commanding Officer, 2/30th Australian Infantry Battalion and commanding Australian POWs in malaya.

117117

117228

SINGAPORE, STRAITS SETTLEMENTS. 1945-09-12. LADY EDWINA MOUNTBATTEN, SUPERINTENDANT IN CHIEF ST JOHN AMBULANCE BRIGADE, WIFE OF THE SUPREME ALLIED COMMANDER, SOUTH EAST ASIA, CHATTING WITH LIEUTENANT COLONEL F. G. CALLAGHAN DSO ED, COMMANDING OFFICER, 2/30TH INFANTRY BATTALION DURING THE SUPREME...

117228

P00297.006

SECURITY CLASSIFICATION PHOTOGRAPHS - OFFICERS OF THE 27TH BRIGADE, 8TH AUSTRALIAN DIVISION, AUSTRALIAN IMPERIAL FORCES. TOP ROW: LEFT OT RIGHT: MAJOR POND, BRIGADIER MARSHALL (DISTINGUISHED SERVICE ORDER, MILITARY CROSS), & CAPTAIN GARDE. SECOND ROW: LEFT TO RIGHT: LIEUTENANT HAINS, LIEUTENANT...

P00297.006

P00007.001

CHANGI, SINGAPORE, 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.002

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.003

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.004

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.005

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.007

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.008

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 26TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.009

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.011

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER OF AIF PRISONERS OF WAR...

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P00007.012

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F..G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

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P00007.014

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL FREDERICK G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF...

P00007.014

P00850.003

Singapore, c. 1982. A brass plaque commemorating Brigadier Sir Frederick Galleghan, former CO of the 2/30th Infantry battalion, who had commanded AIF prisoners of war (POWs) in Malaya during World War 2. The memorial plaque, featuring the 'Rising Sun' badge, is mounted on the wall of Changi Chapel....

P00850.003

P01584.001

LIVERPOOL, NSW. 1939-12. GROUP PORTRAIT OF WARRANT OFFICERS AND SERGEANTS OF THE 17TH BATTALION (NORTH SYDNEY REGIMENT). LEFT TO RIGHT: BACK ROW: LANCE- SERGEANT (L/SGT) L. FAIRFAX, SERGEANT (SGT) W. SYMMONS, SGT J. LLOYD, COMPANY SERGEANT (C/SGT) D. VIDLER, SGT W. T. GOVER, SGT C. CALDWELL, L/SGT...

P01584.001

P01584.016

Group portrait of members of 2/30th Battalion Band. Identified, left to right, back row: NX68238 Private (Pte) Stanley Joseph Desmet; NX68235 Pte Francis Peter Copley; NX68236 Corporal (Cpl) Stanley James Lugton; NX36270 Pte James Jack Elphick; NX67631 Sergeant (Sgt) Rowland Hubert Watterson;...

P01584.016

P02047.001

Bathurst, NSW. 1970-08-15. Brigadier Sir Frederick Gallagher "Blackjack" Galleghan, DSO OBE ISO ED, leading veterans of the 8th Division at the reunion held to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the formation of the Division and the 25th anniversary of the end of World War 2. During this...

P02047.001

P02047.005

Berlin. 1947. Brigadier Frederick Gallagher (Blackjack) Galleghan (second from right) talking with Major-General A.G. Kotikov, Commander, Russian Forces (second from left) and a French general. Galleghan was positioned as head of the Australian Military Mission in Berlin and during this time he...

P02047.005

P02047.006

Berlin. 1948. Brigadier Frederick Gallagher (Blackjack) Galleghan (right) talking through an interpreter, Captain Agafonov to Major-General A.G. Kotikov, Commander, Russian forces (middle). Galleghan was positioned as head of the Australian Military Mission in Berlin and during this time he held...

P02047.006

P02090.001

c.1960. Brigadier Sir Frederick Gallagher "Black Jack" Galleghan DSO OBE ISO ED sharing a joke with three young boys from the Australian Cadet Corps. Galleghan was appointed honorary colonel of the Corps in 1959. (Original print housed in the AWM Archive Store)

P02090.001

P02814.002

c 1955. Informal portrait of Lieutenant Colonel Frederick G. (Black Jack) Galleghan. On the wall behind him is a drawing, a portrait of himself in Changi by Broner, a Dutch Prisoner of War (POW) in Changi. The original photograph is inscribed ` To Doug Leathart with affectionate regards B.J.'....

P02814.002

P02483.002

North Sydney, NSW. 6 March 1938. Trooping the Colour ceremony by the 17th Battalion (The North Sydney Regiment) at St Leonards Park. The ceremony was the first occasion on which a regimental trooping was performed by a militia regiment on the northern side of Sydney Harbour. Standing at the flag...

P02483.002

P02952.007

Port Stephens, NSW. c. 1936. Signallers demonstrating the operation of a W/T "A" wireless set to Lieutenant Colonel (Lt Col) (later Brigadier) Frederick Gallagher (Black Jack) Galleghan, Commanding Officer 17th Battalion, The North Sydney Regiment. From left to right: unidentified (on motorcycle),...

P02952.007

P01584.013

SYDNEY, NSW. 1938? GROUP PORTRAIT OF OFFICERS OF 17TH BATTALION. LEFT TO RIGHT: BACK ROW: LIEUTENANTS (LT) JIM LOWE, JOHN HINDMARSH, ?, JAMES MOFFATT, A. C. M. (ARCH) EWART; THIRD ROW: LT RASMUSSEN, CAPTAIN CLIVE NEVILLE, ?, LIEUTENANTS DON MCLAREN, HECTOR FORD, MICHAEL O'SHAUNESSY; SECOND ROW: LT...

P01584.013

116879

MOROTAI. 1945-09-12. BRIGADIER C. A. CALLAGHAN, 8TH DIVISION RECOUNTING HIS EXPERIENCES AS A PRISONER OF WAR OF THE JAPANESE DURING A PRESS CONFERENCE AT THE ADVANCED LAND HEADQUARTERS.

116879

116880

MOROTAI. 1945-09-12. BRIGADIER C. A. CALLAGHAN, 8TH DIVISION SOON AFTER HIS RELEASE FROM THE JAPANESE PRISONER OF WAR CAMP.

116880

P00007.006

CHANGI, SINGAPORE 1943-01-26. CEREMONIAL PARADE HELD ON SELARANG BARRACKS SQUARE TO CELEBRATE AUSTRALIA DAY. MEMBERS OF THE 27TH INFANTRY BRIGADE PARADED UNDER THE COMMAND OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL C.H. KAPPE. THE SALUTE WAS TAKEN BY LIEUTENANT-COLONEL F.G. GALLEGHAN COMMANDER AIF PRISONERS OF WAR WHO...

P00007.006

Private Record

Art

Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Galleghan

Lieutenant Colonel Frederick G Galleghan, DSO, ED, commanding officer of the 2/30th Battalion of the 8th Division. 'Black Jack', as he was known, was given command of the AIF prisoners in August 1942 when senior officers, including (temporary) Major-General Cecil Callaghan who was in charge of AIF...

ART25070

Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Galleghan

Lieutenant Colonel Frederick G Galleghan, DSO, ED, commanding officer of the 2/30th Battalion of the 8th Division. 'Black Jack', as he was known, was given command of the AIF prisoners in August 1942 when senior officers, including (temporary) Major-General Cecil Callaghan who was in charge of AIF...

ART26547

Film

POW leaving Changi prison, visit of Major General Dempsey & Changi area, funeral of three POW

Members of 2/26 Australian Infantry Battalion, 2/12 Field Company and 8 Australian Division Signals shown leaving Changi prison by truck for Singapore wharf and home. Funeral of three POWs who died in 2/14 Australian General Hospital shortly before they were due to return home. Members of 2/29...

F07339

Investigation into conditions on board Japanese ship Yoizuki

After the Japanese light cruiser Yoizuki (3500 tons) had left Sydney, NSW, with 1005 Korean and Formosan internees from NSW it was alleged that due to overcrowding, it had become a "hell ship". Due to public outcry the ship was ordered into Rabaul where an investigation committee, headed by Mr...

F07462

Published Collection

Greeting Card Collection

The Greeting Card collection consists of both hand-drawn and commercially produced cards sent to and from Australian service personnel engaged in conflicts dating from the South African War (1899-1902) to the Gulf War (1991) and peacekeeping operations. Cards in the collection contain both...

RC00370

Heraldry

Silver plated trophy : Sergeant F Duck

Silver plated trophy cup on a wooden base. The trophy has been buried at some stage and the metal is dented with much of the plating missing. It is engraved 'COMMANDING OFFICERS TROPHY', and 'Presented By LIEUT-COLONEL. F.G. GALLEGHAN 30-6-33'. The lower part of the cup is stamped 'EPNS'. The...

REL29844

Australian flag : Captain F E Stahl, 8 Division Signals

Handmade Australian blue ensign made from a Union Jack flag stitched into the corner of blue fabric. The stars of the Southern Cross and the Federation Star have been cut out of the blue cloth and pieces of white handkerchief sewn into them. The Union Jack is printed along one arm with 'MADE IN...

RELAWM31805

Presentation box of miniature brooms : Lieutenant Colonel F G Galleghan, 2/30 Battalion

Small wooden box with a flat lid attached with three leather hinges and steel nails. The lid is marked in pencil '"Search & Sweep" CHANGI BROOM FACTORY "UBIQUE BRAND"'. The box was made to contain four miniature samples of brooms, minus their handles, made in the factory.

RELAWM31828.001

Miniature yard broom : Lieutenant Colonel F G Galleghan, 2/30 Battalion

Miniature yard broom with coconut fibre bristles and a wooden head. There is a hole in the head to take a handle. Head is made in five pieces and is secured by fine steel pins and staples. Marked in pencil on the head '"Search & Sweep" CHANGI BROOM FACTORY "UBIQUE BRAND" No 8866'.

RELAWM31828.002

Miniature yard broom : Lieutenant Colonel F G Galleghan, 2/30 Battalion

Long bristled split rattan broom with a two part wooden head. There is a hole in the head to take a handle. The bristles and head are secured by steel wire and two steel strips around each end. The head is marked in pencil '"Search & Sweep" CHANGI BROOM FACTORY "UBIQUE BRAND" No 8667'.

RELAWM31828.003

Miniature yard broom : Lieutenant Colonel F G Galleghan, 2/30 Battalion

Long bristled split rattan broom with a two part wooden head. There is a hole in the head to take a handle. The bristles are secured to the head by two steel wires. They are further secured, to stop them spreading when used, by two rows of finely twisted copper wire. The head is marked in pencil...

RELAWM31828.004

Miniature yard broom : Lieutenant Colonel F G Galleghan, 2/30 Battalion

Miniature split rattan broom head, without handle, in a traditional 'witch's broom' shape. The bristles are bound at the head with fine copper wire.

RELAWM31828.005

Wooden carving showing map of Malaya and an Australian Soldier : Brigadier F Gallaghan, 2/30 Battalion

Small carving in the form of a miniature memorial, displaying a freestanding map of Malaya beside an aerial bomb with a helmeted Australian soldier crawling up an incline in front. This is carved from one piece of light coloured wood. The carving sits on a two-tiered ebony base with four finned...

RELAWM32455

Sound

Brigadier Sir Frederick "Black Jack" Galleghan, DSO OBE ISO ED, recounts his military career [memoirs]

Brigadier Sir Frederick "Black Jack" Galleghan recounts his military career: cadet at Cook's Hill High School, Newcastle; experiences in 1914-18 War in 34th Battalion; Military life between the two world wars; raising and training of the 2/30 Bn in Australia; Singapore and Malaysia; preparations to...

S01329

Timeline

Date of birth 1897-01-11
Other 1909 Graduated from Cooks Hill High School.
Other 1913-06-30 Comissioned in the cadets as a second lieutenant.
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs) 1916-01-20 Enlisted in the AIF.
Other 1916-01-20 Became a private in the 34th Battalion.
Date of embarkation 1916-05-02
Other 1916-06-23 Arrived United Kingdom.
Date promoted 1916-11-16 Appointed sergeant.
Other 1916-11-22 Arrived in France.
Date wounded 1917-06-07 Wounded in action, gun shot wound to right shoulder.
Other 1918-02-14 Arrived in France.
Other 1918-02-21 Returned to his unit.
Date wounded 1918-08-08 Wounded in action, gun shot wound to left shoulder.
Date returned to Australia 1919-01-21 Invalided home.
Date of discharge 1919-03-03 Demobilised and discharged from AIF and comissioned as a lieutenant in the militia.
Date commissioned 1919-09-16 Appointed temporary lieutenant.
Other units 1921-03-31 Appointed lieutenant to the 2nd Battalion.
Date promoted 1925-05-27 Appointed captain.
Date promoted 1930-06-17 Appointed major.
Date promoted 1932 Promoted to lieutenant colonel in the milita.
Date promoted 1932-08-01 Appointed lieutenant colonel commanding officer the 2/41st Battalion.
Other units 1934-01-01 Appointed commanding officer of the 2/35th Battalion.
Other 1936 Joined the Attorney General's office.
Date of honour or award 1936-09-20 Awarded an Efficiency Decoration.
Other units 1937-03-01 - 1940-10-17 Appointed commanding officer of the 17th Battalion.
Date and unit at appointment (Officers) 1940-03-18 Joined the AIF.
Other units 1940-10-17 - 1942-02-09 Seconded commanding officer of the 2nd/30th Battalion.
Date of embarkation 1941-07 The 2nd/30th Battalion sailed for Singapore.
Other 1941-08-15 Arrived in Singapore.
Other 1942-02-09 Reliquished command of 2nd/30th Battalion as deemed medically unfit for duty due to hearing loss.
Date captured 1942-02-15 Became a prisoner of war and was interned in Changi by the Japanese.
Other 1942-02-16 Reported missing in action.
Date of honour or award 1942-03-05 Companion of the Distinguished Service Order (DSO). 'Lt.-Col. Galleghan conceived a plan and personally supervised the whole operation, and by initiative, coolness and resourcefulness he was able with one Coy. to ambush several hundred of the enemy, that Coy. Destroying utterly 500 of the enemy and itself suffering only slight casualties. Throughout the ensuing battle he personally directed operations and by personal example, cool and quick decisions at a time when the fate of his Bn. was in the balance, he not only withheld a determined attempt by the enemy to force a withdrawal but inflicted very severe casualties. His calmness during this period played a very important part in maintaining the morale of his tps. In spite of continued heavy dive bombing attacks on the area from which he directed his operation. At no time was any portion of his unit out of control and when forced by a force far superior in numbers to that of his own to withdraw to a line behind the S. MUAR he again conceived and carried out a plan which enabled the whole Bn. to break contact with the enemy and re-establish a solid front. Again his courage was exemplary, as he saw each Coy. out of its contact and remained until the last to ensure safety of his men. Throughout the whole of these operations, without artillery or air support, and opposed by a force of at least a Bde. strength, the Bn. suffered only between 100 and 150 casualties, killed, wounded and missing, of which only 12 were known to have been killed.'
Date of honour or award 1942-03-05 Mention in Despatches.
Other 1942-08 While in Changi he was appointed commander of AIF prisoners of war. Rank hierachies such as these were maintained in prisoner of war camps to give support and leadership to those interned there.
Other 1943-01-11 Reported prisoner of war.
Other 1944-03 While in Changi he became deputy commander of all the Allied prisoners in Malaya.
Date released 1945-08 Released from Changi.
Date returned to Australia 1945-10-09 Returned to Sydney.
Other 1946-01-03 Transferred to the retired list of officers as a honourary brigadier.
Date of honour or award 1947-03-06 Gazetted Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE). The following citation was writtem in September 1945 by Colonel E B Holmes, Manchester Regiment, Commander British Prisoners of War in Malaya. "Since August 1942 Lt-Col F.G. GALLEGHAN, DSO, ED, has been in command of the AIF and was next senior to me. In March 1944, on reorganisation and change of camp site I appointed him Deputy Commander and also my representative officer with the Japanese and he carried out these duties with conspicuous success. During our 3 1/2 years together he has been a tower of strength to me. He has co-operated with me to the fullest possible extent in every way, keeping up morale and maintaining the health and discipline of the Prisoners of War. He has always given me sound and helpful advice and support and done all in his power to help me present a united front against the Japanese. He is of strong and forceful personality, his leadership has impressed itself upon all ranks of all services and nationalities. He is possessed of great physical and moral courage and his example has been an inspiration to all. I cannot speak too highly of his services.'
Other 1949-01-06 - 1949-11-18 Appointed honourary major general and Head of the Australian Military Mission, Berlin.
Date of honour or award 1959-06-13 Companion of the Imperial Service Order (ISO).
Date of honour or award 1969-01-01 Created Knight Bachelor.
Date of death 1971-04-20 Mosman, NSW.