Biography

Birth date: 31 October 1888
Birth place: Australia: South Australia, Mount Bryan East
Death date: 30 November 1958
Death place: United States of America: Massachusetts, Framingham
Final rank: Captain
Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918
Units:
  • General List
  • General List Official Photographer Attached Australian Corps
  • Headquarters
  • AC HQ
  • Headquarters Australian Corps
  • Australian Imperial Force

George Wilkins, explorer, war photographer and cinematographer, was born on 31 October 1888 at Mount Bryan East in South Australia. He studied electrical engineering at the South Australian School of Mines, mechanical engineering at the University of Adelaide and music at the University of Adelaide's Elder Conservatorium. At the same time he developed a keen interest in photography and cinematography.

In 1908 he moved to England to work for the Gaumont Film Company as a ‘cinematographic cameraman’. Soon afterwards he began work as a reporter for the London Daily Chronicle, travelling to report on events overseas. He learned to fly and take aerial photographs and, in 1912, he left England to report on the Balkan War, becoming the first person to take motion pictures in the front line of a war zone. In 1913 he accepted a place on a Canadian Arctic expedition and was still there in 1916 when he first heard that the world was at war.

On returning to Australia he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Australian Flying Corps but was prevented from operational flying because of colour blindness. In July 1917 he was appointed as an official photographer with the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) and reached the Western Front in time to photograph the Australians during the Passchendaele campaign. By mid 1918, now a captain, he was given command of No. 3 (Photographic) Sub-Section of the Australian War Records unit. More adventurer than photographer, Wilkins was sometimes a participant in, as well as an observer of, war. In June 1918 he was awarded the Military Cross for helping wounded under fire and, in September, earned a bar to the award for leading a group of inexperienced American soldiers through a dangerous action. He is the only Australian official photographer to have been decorated.

In January 1919 Wilkins travelled to the Gallipoli Peninsula as a photographer with the Australian Historical Mission under the official historian, Charles Bean. His appointment with the AIF ended on 7 September 1920.

In later life Wilkins set out to explore the Arctic by air and flew from Alaska to Norway, for which he was knighted. Wilkins won a number of awards for his pioneering exploration work. In November 1928 and January 1929 he explored the Antarctic by air, and in the 1930s, made five further expeditions to the Antarctic. In 1931 he unsuccessfully attempted to take a First World War submarine, the Nautilus, under the Arctic ice to the North Pole. He subsequently worked in defence-related positions with the US Weather Bureau and the Arctic Institute of North America.

Wilkins died on 30 November 1958 in Framingham, Massachusetts. He was so highly regarded in the United States that his ashes were scattered at the North Pole by the crew of an American nuclear submarine. His output is represented in the Australian War Memorial collection by eight films and hundreds of photographs from the First World War.

Rolls and Awards

First World War Embarkation Roll

  • Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
  • Date of embarkation: 10 May 1917
  • Place of embarkation: Sydney

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Mention in despatches

  • Unit: General List Official Photographer Attached Australian Corps
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Military Cross

  • Unit: Headquarters
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Bar to Military Cross

  • Unit: Headquarters Australian Corps
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Bar to Military Cross

  • Unit: General List
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards : Military Cross

  • Unit: AC HQ
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards : Bar to Military Cross

  • Unit: Australian Imperial Force
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Collection Items

Film

Australian pressmen visit Australian front

Australian and British newspaper editors and war correspondents visit the Australian forces in France, where they view and enter old trenches near Biaches and watch artillery barrages laid down by the Australian artillery in the Mont St Quentin sector. The press later viewed the tank school and...

F00046

Prime Minister Rt Hon W M Hughes visits Western Front

The Right Honorable William Morris Hughes, Sir Joseph Cook (Australian High Commissioner to Great Britain) and General Sir W R Birdwood visiting the 5th Divisional Headquarters at St Gratien on 2 July 1918 and later with the 2nd Division troops near Camon on 3 July 1918 during a tour of the...

F00014

With the Australian Flying Corps in France, England and Palestine

Nos 2, 3 and 4 Squadrons of the Australian Flying Corps under operational conditions in France. Preparations for bombing mission; swinging compass and bombing up an RE8 aircraft of No 3 Squadron; Sopwith Camel fighters of No 4 Sqn at Clamerais, France perform aerobatics. SE5 fighters of 'C'...

F00035

How the Digger gets his mail: the Australian Army postal services at work

Officers and staff of the Australian Base Post Office London. The staff numbers over seven hundred employees of whom the greater number are women who had to be specially trained for the work. Mail arrives by ship at Liverpool and is bag sorted and despatched by rail to Australian Base Post Office...

F00020

Bapaume to Bullecourt

The advance on Bapaume and Bullecourt after the Germans had retreated to the Hindenburg Line. Shows Australians participating during this action. The infantry advancing across no-man's land; the construction of light railway for the conveyance of stores to Bapaume during the advance. Bapaume was...

F00045

Australia at war 1914-1918: an account of the Australian force in the Great War

A Commonwealth Film Unit production for the Australian War Memorial. An appraisal of Australia's part in the First World War and the changes which have become apparent in Australia, illustrated by scenes of campaigns throughout the world. Revised from AWM F00187 'We of the AIF' by the Commonwealth...

F00189

Fighting in Flanders

This film deals with the participation of the Australian troops in the third battle of Ypres during the autumn of 1917. The scenes include Australians preparing for the attack; being reviewed by Sir Douglas Haig before going in to action; shells falling amongst the ruins of Ypres and then shows...

F00056

The Australians' final campaign in 1918

After the third battle of Ypres in September 1917 the Australians were put in to hold the Messines Wytschaete sector and to prepare defences against the expected German spring offensive. The German offensive was launched opposite Amiens and the Australians were sent to meet it. The heaviest...

F00018

Photograph

G01743

The Turkish monument, erected on the 'Nek' shortly after the evacuation in honour of those who fell in the severe fighting around this area. Note the thigh bone in the foreground and scattered skeletel remains to the left. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain...

G01743

G01744

A general view of Shrapnel Gully from Dead Man's Ridge, conspicuous by the drain dug to protect the road to the front line posts. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March,...

G01744

G01745

A view of a long beach looking from the north of Gaba Tepe, showing the wire and entrenchments between this point and the Australian positions, the outposts of which were at the extreme left. A soldier is on the beach near a barge and another soldier is half way up the hill. Photograph taken on...

G01745

G01746

A view showing the road reconstructed by the Turks after the evacuation, leading over Quinn's Post and onto Hill 971. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01746

G01747

A view of Anzac Cove as it appeared in February, 1919. Debris in the foreground includes barbed wire and two water cans. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01747

G01748

A view of Imbros as seen from the Turkish gun known as 'Beachy Bill's Position'. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01748

G01749

The back of Quinn's Post (right) and Dead Man's Ridge (left). Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01749

G01750

Wild flowers on Gallipoli Peninsula. These wild flowers were the subject of a painting by George Lambert titled 'Gallipoli wild flowers', which include red and blue anemones. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical...

G01750

G01849

Brown's Dip No 1 and No 2 cemeteries, looking west, No 2 the nearest, after the crosses had been erected by the Graves Registration Unit. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and...

G01849

G01870

Looking towards Ari Burnu across the ridge which Lieutenant Howe climbed on landing. Two soldiers are standing in the left background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months...

G01870

G01871

Gallipoli Peninsula, Turkey. February 1919. Looking from the crest of Plugge's Plateau to Russell's Top, which was first reached on the morning of the landing across the Razorback to the Sphinx. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C. E. W. Bean of the...

G01871

G01872

Looking from the crest of Plugge's Plateau which was first reached on the morning of the landing across the Razorback to the Sphinx. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of...

G01872

G01873

Looking from the Turkish trenches on the Nek to our trenches on the Nek. A piece of steel railway line is jutting out of the ground on an angle in the centre foreground. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian...

G01873

G01874

View from the north end of Baby 700 showing the Nek, Walker's Ridge and Turk's Head. Human bones are in the left centre and right foreground. The Turkish monument is in the centre background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W...

G01874

G01875

Looking towards Baby 700 from Battleship Hill. Human bones are visible in the foreground, a dixie or metal bucket is to the left. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of...

G01875

G01876

One of several machine gun positions on Baby 700 which covered the Nek. The one shown has been covered, to the left is the access point to the trench, a chimney is in the centre background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean...

G01876

G01877

The view from the machine gun positions on Baby 700. The Turkish monument is in the right background. See G 01876. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and...

G01877

G01878

The stone mule track leading across the ridge south of Mule Valley. An unidentified Australian soldier is standing on the track in the background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during...

G01878

G01879

The steep valley leading to the Neck from the north, taken from Turk's Head. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01879

G01880

Unloading Australian Historical Mission's supplies from an English lighter after the conclusion of the expedition to Kilid Bahr. Mules and a general service wagon (GSW) are at the end of the jetty. English and Australian soldiers are to the right. One of a series of photographs taken on the...

G01880

G01881

The two winding tracks leading down from the crest on Plugge's Plateau which were used by the troops on the day of the landing. Note the remains of the dugouts at right. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian...

G01881

G01882

View of the valley leading to the Nek taken from the south. The Turkish monument is in the centre background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March,...

G01882

G01883

Negative missing. Apparently number never used. Same as G01882.

G01883

G01884

View from Baby 700 to the Dardanelles and beyond. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01884

G01885

Bones and equipment of soldiers of the 1st Battalion on Baby 700, looking towards Battleship Hill. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01885

G01887

Looking towards Battleship Hill from Baby 700. A bullet damaged water bottle is on the slope in the foreground. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March,...

G01887

G01893

Battle outposts (Marine Trench) and Wire Gully. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01893

G01902

Looking from a point near the beach between No 1 and No 2 Outposts towards Baby 700 on the extreme right where the bodies of Australians killed in April 1915 were found. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian...

G01902

G01904

Members of the Australian Historical Mission and Major Zeki Bey, a Turkish Officer who accompanied the Australian Historical Mission, at lunch on Hill 60. Left to right: Lieutenant (Lt) Herbert Buchanan; Zeki Bey; Lt James; Capt C E W Bean and the Official War Artist Capt George Lambert. In...

G01904

G01906

The burnt bones on Hill 100 near Hill 60. The Turks occasionally disposed of the bodies of both their own and enemy soldiers in this manner. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the...

G01906

G01911

A sniper's post on our side of Rhododendron Spur. Empty .303 bullet cases lie scattered on the ground. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01911

G01919

The end of German Officers' Trench looking towards Quinn's Post and Pope's Post. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01919

G01924

Major Zeki Bey, a Turkish soldier who fought at Anzac during 1915, standing next to the trench where Lieutenant Grigg was killed. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of...

G01924

G01935

The graveyard in Brown's Dip. Lieutenant Hughes, left, and Sergeant Woolley marking out graves. The 'A' displayed on Lt Hughes' colour patch indicates that he was a veteran of the Gallipoli campaign. The unidentified soldier in the background is sharpening wooden pegs later to be used as grave...

G01935

G01941

The narrow line of trenches and triangular patch that was between the fighting parties at Leane's Trench. The silhouette of a soldier against the sea is seen in the centre background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the...

G01941

G01943

Right of Leane's Trench showing the cornfield on top of the hill and Lone Pine in the distant centre. The figure at centre right is thought to be Captain Bean taking terrain notes. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the...

G01943

G01946

Five members of the Australian Historical Mission, from left to right; unidentified, Captain CEW Bean, unidentified, Major Zeki Bey, unidentified, showing the distance between opposing trenches in No Man's Land at Lone Pine. The Turkish monument is in the background. One of a series of...

G01946

G01949

Bones of Turks and rotting clothing and equipment in front of Leane's trench. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01949

G01951

Lieutenant Herbert Sidney Buchanan standing beside a flowering fruit tree on Silt Spur. The tree probably originated from an apricot or plum seed discarded by a soldier in 1915. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the...

G01951

G01958

A damaged lighter from 1915 on the beach with Gaba Tepe in the background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01958

G01960

A line of Turkish loophole trenches. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01960

G01962

Shell holes near Turkish gun positions. An unidentified member of the Australian Historical Mission is standing in one of the shell holes, on the ground nearby is part of a shell, which was probably placed there by one of the members of the mission. One of a series of photographs taken on the...

G01962

G01963

Gaba Tepe showing the position our men dug after the landing. A soldier is standing on the ridge above the dugouts (left) and Captain Bean and Zeki Bey are walking along the beach toward the lighter (right). Note the footprints on the sand. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli...

G01963

G01964A

Kilid Bahr Plateau taken from near a Turkish gun position. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919. This is the right hand image in a two part...

G01964A

G01964B

Kilid Bahr Plateau taken from near a Turkish gun position. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919. This is the left hand image in a two part...

G01964B

G01964P

Kilid Bahr Plateau taken from near a Turkish gun position. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919. This is a digitally combined composite panorama...

G01964P

G01965

View of our Australian positions (left) on Gaba Tepe. Note the protective holes dug into the cliff at left. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01965

G01966

The landing place of Leane's party on Gaba Tepe from above. Note the lighter on the beach. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01966

G01967

Trenches on Gaba Tepe. A lighter is seen on the beach. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01967

G01968

View of Anzac from the south end of Gun Ridge. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01968

G01969

Gaba Tepe from south end of Gun Ridge. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01969

G01980

View of Cooee Gully. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01980

G01981

An unidentified member of the Australian Historical Mission standing in the communication trench in the valley leading to Wire Gully. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of...

G01981

G01982

A member of the Australian Historical Mission standing in the creek bed in Legge Valley. A disused tank and three wooden boxes are attached to posts (left). The sea is in the distance. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of...

G01982

G01983

Looking along Leane's trench towards Lone Pine. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01983

G01984

Looking from Rosenthal's gun position towards the Knife Ridge (Edge) and Gun Ridge. Rotting sand bags are in the foreground and bricksare piled in the central trench. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian...

G01984

G01985

The bomb stop in the Turkish trenches near Quinn's Post. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01985

G01986

Two positions dug into the hill near Marine Trench (beach outpost) on the first day. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01986

G01987

Looking down Wire Gully from the head of Bridges Road. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01987

G01988A

View from the trenches east of Johnstone's Gully at the edge of Wire Gully, looking along Marine Trench and the head of Bridges Road. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of...

G01988A

G01988B

View from the trenches east of Johnstone's Gully at the edge of Wire Gully, looking along Marine Trench and Bridges Road. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February...

G01988B

G01988C

View from the trenches east of Johnstone's Gully at the edge of Wire Gully, looking along Marine Trench and Bridges Road. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February...

G01988C

G01988P

View from the trenches east of Johnstone's Gully at the edge of Wire Gully, looking along Marine Trench and Bridges Road. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February...

G01988P

G01989

An officer surveying the area where a German mine had blown up in no man's land on Johnstone's Jolly. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01989

G02002

Aghyl Dere in which General Baldwin's British Brigade suffered heavily. Note the scattered skulls and bones. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March,...

G02002

G02003

View of The Farm taken from the Turkish position on Chunuk Bair. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G02003

G02004

The trench (left) which the New Zealanders reached on Chanuk Bahr and Rhododendron Spur. Aghyl Dere in which General Baldwin's Brigade suffered heavily. Note the scattered human bones. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the...

G02004

G02013A

Looking across the Nek from the Australian trenches to Baby 700. A Turkish monument is in the left background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March,...

G02013A

G02013B

Looking across the Nek from the Australian trenches to Baby 700. A Turkish monument is in the left background and a whitened skull and bones are in the centre ground. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian...

G02013B

G02018

Panoramic view of Ocean Beach. A ship is in the harbour. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G02018

G02019

Looking from Sniper's Nest across the mountains to Ari Burnu. Note the beached vessel at left rear. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G02019

G02035

Helles Beach showing the fort on the extreme left from which the machine guns were fired by the Turks during the landing. The three ships in the harbour, HMT River Clyde (left), the French Navy battleship Massens (centre) and the French passenger ship Saghalien (right) were run ashore to form a...

G02035

G02039

Members of the Australian Historical Mission standing in front of their camp, behind Lone Pine. Identified personnel include the Official War Artist George Lambert reclining in a typical pose (far left) and Captain Bean seated third from left. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli...

G02039

G02041A

View from Tommy Trench (Tommies' Trench) showing an unidentified member of the Australian Historical Mission (left) Officieal War Artist, Captain George W Lambert (right), horses are in the centre left background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction...

G02041A

G02041B

View from Tommy Trench (Tommies' Trench). Captain George W Lambert, Official War Artist, is sitting in the far left. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and...

G02041B

G02046

Captain George W Lambert, official war artist, standing with a Turkish pony. Five soldiers are standing outside a stone building in the background. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during...

G02046

G02057

The ruins in the main street in Kiritha, Cape Helles. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G02057

G02060

The type of country advanced over by the 2nd Australian Artillery Brigade during the attack on Krithia on 8 May 1915. The man lying down (left centre) is thought to be Captain George W Lambert the Australian Official War Artist. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula...

G02060

G02065

View of Krithia, taken from the Australian front line trench. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G02065

P03631.228

The Turkish monument, erected on the 'Nek' shortly after the evacuation in honour of those who fell in the severe fighting around this area. Note the thigh bone in the foreground and scattered skeletel remains to the left. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain...

P03631.228

P03631.230

A view of a long beach looking from the north of Gaba Tepe, showing the wire and entrenchments between this point and the Australian positions, the outposts of which were at the extreme left. A soldier is on the beach near a barge and another soldier is half way up the hill. Photograph taken on...

P03631.230

P03631.231

A view showing the road reconstructed by the Turks after the evacuation, leading over Quinn's Post and onto Hill 971. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

P03631.231

P03631.232

A view of Anzac Cove as it appeared in February, 1919. Debris in the foreground includes barbed wire and two water cans. Photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

P03631.232

P03631.235

Wild flowers on Gallipoli Peninsula. These wild flowers were the subject of a painting by George Lambert titled Gallipoli wild flowers, which include red and blue anemones. Paget Plate colour photograph taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of The Australian...

P03631.235

P03171.002

Informal portrait of Captain (Capt) George Hubert Wilkins After returning to Australia in 1917 from the Arctic where he was the deputy leader of the Stefansson expedition, Wilkins joined the Australian Flying Corps, was commissioned in May 1917 as a Lieutenant and sent to France. He was the second...

P03171.002

P08145.001

The RRS William Scoresby in dock. This ship was built for the Discovery Committee by the East Yorkshire ship builder Cook, Welton and Gemmell of Beverley. She was launched on 31 December 1925, fitted out in Hull's Queen's Dock and handed over to her owners on 14 June 1926. The Discovery...

P08145.001

G02008

Looking down on Rhododendron Spur. A road is seen winding along the ridge. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G02008

G01925

Extreme left of Quinn's Post, showing how our trenches ran into Turkish trenches. One of a series of photographs taken on the Gallipoli Peninsula under the direction of Captain C E W Bean of the Australian Historical Mission, during the months of February and March, 1919.

G01925

G01939

The remains of trenches and overhead cover at Lone Pine from which both sides would throw bombs at each other. The Turkish monument, which marks the spot where the Anzac August 1915 advance at Lone Pine was stopped by the Turks, is on the left. Major Zeki Bey, a Turkish soldier who fought at Anzac...

G01939

E00737

Soldiers running to take shelter from a heavy shellburst at Glencorse Wood in the Ypres salient. A print from this negative is held in the Wilkins papers at the Byrd Polar Research Centre, The Ohio State University Archives, and carries the following inscription in Wilkins' hand: ' A shell burst in...

E00737

E00980

View of a damaged 18 pounder gun of the 25th Battery of Australian Field Artillery temporarily abandoned in Zonnebeke Valley, south of Abraham Heights. This gun was put out of action during the Passchendaele operations, and was withdrawn with great difficulty owing to the boggy state of the ground....

E00980

E00982

Pioneers of the 3rd Division laying a mule track along the railway embankment near Zonnebeke, in the Ypres sector. For the construction of this road debris from demolished houses was carried in sandbags and used for ballasting and timber was obtained from an old German dump near Devil's Crossing.

E00982

E00983

A shell torn section of the Ypres-Roulers Railway line near Zonnebeke, in the Ypres sector. No attempt to repair this section of the line could possibly be made until September 1918. During the Third Battle of Ypres, it was violently bombarded by the enemy.

E00983

E03478

Members of the 38th Battalion in Dog Trench near Guillemont Farm, in which they were held by machine gun fire during the attack on the Hindenburg Line, near Bony. Identified, left to right: 5918 Private (Pte) Binion; 967 Sergeant A. E. Pegler MM; 3020 Corporal H. Amiet MM; Captain C. H. Peters MC;...

E03478

E03326

Lieutenant (Lt) James P. Quinn, an Australian Official Artist, at work on Mont St Quentin. Note the debris around Lt Quinn.

E03326

Art

Captain George H Wilkins, Henencourt

Depicts a full length portrait of Captain George Wilkins, reclining near a doorway, wearing long boots. Born in South Australia in 1888, Sir George Hubert Wilkins (1888-1958) studied engineering at the Adelaide School of Mines. He soon became interested in photography and cinemagraphics. In 1908 he...

ART09930

Technology

Mauser C96 'Red 9' Pistol : Dr C E W Bean

Mauser C96 semi-automatic pistol. Frame marked WAFFENFABRIK MAUSER OBERNDORF A.NECKAR and the serial number is on the breech. A slot is cut into the back strap for the stock holster. The pistol grip is incised with a large red numeral '9', in filled with red paint. This denotes that the weapon is...

RELAWM12368.001

Timeline

Date of birth 1888-10-31 Mount Bryan East, SA.
Other 1905 Studied engineering at the Adelaide University and South Australian School of Mines.
Other 1908 Moved to England to work for the Gaumont Film Company as a 'cinematographic cameraman'.
Other 1910 Learned to fly with the help of English pilot Claude Grahame-White.
Other 1912 He left England to report on the Balkan War, becoming the first person to take motion pictures in the front line of a war zone.
Other 1913 - 1916 He accepted a place on a Canadian Arctic expedition.
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs) 1917-05-01 Enlisted in the Australian Flying Corps but was prevented from operational flying because of colour blindness.
Date of embarkation 1917-05-10
Other 1917-07 Was appointed as an official photographer with the AIF and reached the Western Front in time to photograph the Australians during the Passchendaele campaign.
Other 1918 Now a captain, he was given command of No. 3 Photographic Sub-Section of the Australian War Records unit.
Date of honour or award 1918-06-03 Military Cross (MC) for helping wounded under fire. He is the only Australian official photographer to have been decorated.
Date of recommendation honour or award 1918-09-06
Date of recommendation honour or award 1918-09-27
Other 1919 Entered the Australian to England Air Race, but ended the race on Crete where he crashed into a fence.
Other 1919-01 Wilkins travelled to the Gallipoli Peninsula as a photographer with the Australian Historical Mission under the official historian, Charles Bean.
Date of honour or award 1919-06-03 Gazetted Bar to Military Cross for leading a group of inexperienced American soldiers through a dangerous action.
Date of discharge 1920-09-07 Appointment with the AIF ended.
Other 1921 - 1922 Chief of the scientific staff and naturalist for the Shackleton-Rowett Expedition.
Other 1923 - 1925 Commander of the Wilkins Australia and Islands Expedition, which was commissioned by the British Museum of Natural History to collect specimens of animals native to tropical northeastern Australia.
Other 1926 - 1928 Commander of the Wilkins-Detroit Arctic Expeditions, during which Wilkins developed the first ski-landing gear for aircraft.
Other 1927-03 With pilot Ben Eielson, forced to crash land airplane in the Arctic.
Date of honour or award 1928-06-04 Created Knight Bachelor for his services to aviation and exploration.
Other 1928-12-20 Wilkins and Eielson make the first 600 mile aerial reconnaissance flight over the Antarctic.
Other 1929-01 Explored the Antarctic by air.
Other 1931 He unsuccessfully attempted to take a First World War submarine, the Nautilus, under the Arctic ice to the North Pole.
Other 1933 First of three expeditions to the Antarctic as second in command of the Ellsworth Arctic Expeditions. Wilkins was in charge of bases and the base ship Wyatt Earp.
Other 1934 - 1935 Second expedition to the Antarctic as Ellsworth¿s second in command.
Other 1937 In charge of the Alaskan-Canadian search for the lost Soviet Polar Expedition, commanded by Sigismund Levanevsky.
Other 1940 - 1941 Sent to Europe and Far East on special missions for the United States government.
Other 1942 - 1958 Consultant for United States military, primarily in the areas of hot and cold weather clothing and survival techniques.
Date of death 1958-11-30 Framingham, Massachusetts.
Date of burial 1959-03-17 Nuclear submarine, USS Skate surfaced at North Pole and the american crew scattered Wilkins' ashes over the ice.