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Remembered Today:

Patsy Adam-Smith & ANZAC personal document Collection


Hosko

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Hi. This is my first post here, so please be kind! :)

My grandfather (Oliver Hoskin. Service #48) was a member of the 31st Battalion AIF Signal Regiment in 1915/1916 before being moved to the 5th Division Signals Company in March 1916. He remained in the 5th Division Signals Company until the end of the war.

He was gassed in the actions surrounding Villers Brettoneux on April 24th, 1918 although survived, and this was reported in the book The Anzacs, by Patsy Adam-Smith. Apparently he was affected by gas and rolled up in a blanket by his colleagues and left to lie, unable to see, in a shell hole for a long time (possibly overnight) before his colleagues could come and retrieve him

I have his diaries which are very short and factual. They mention the fact he was gassed and sent to Bath Ware hospital but do not mention any of the detail that was covered in The Anzacs, so obviously the author had access to other private memoirs that mentioned my Grandfather.

My father and I would like to track these sources down, so my question is whether anyone knows where the personal documents (letters, diaries) used by Adams-Smith were stored once she finished her research? I believe that they may be in the Latrobe University library but am not entirely sure. If anyone knows, I'd really appreciate it if you could share.

I have searched TROVE and the AWM site quite thoroughly.

Thanks in advance.

Andrew

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I have often wondered the same thing. It seems she would have accumulated a fantastic amount of material from veterans for her iconic book The Anzacs. There must be a trove of diaries and letters somewhere. Maybe the diaries were returned to the owners. Patsy died in 2001. Her notes would make interesting reading still. The SLV as BFSBM points out could be a good start.

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Hi Andrew,

One of the Fifth Division signallers, Henry Dadswell, wrote a very comprehensive and well-written account of his entire 5th Divisional Signal Company experience. While there is no mention of Oliver (presumably different sections), there is a sad part that deals with Villers-Bretonneux in April 1918, how the 14th brigade's gas sergeant inadvertently sounded the all clear and how Dadswell went in to find his fellow third section signallers lying where they succumbed, with 3 dead and the remainder evacuated, not to return. I bought the book from Dadswell's son and it is very readable and I often refer to it. Dadswell was in 14th Brigade and I'm supposing Hoskin was in the 8th Brigade under Tivey.

"Diary of a Sapper", World War One Reflections of Sapper Henry W Dadswell, August 2010.

If you search for my posts, you will see the photographs my grandfather took as part of the Third Division Signals Company, including a few from the vicinity of Villers-Bretonneux in May / June 1918. As the signals companies rotated with the divisions, any location he was in would have been very familiar to Oliver Hoskin.

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  • 7 months later...

Hi All. Thanks for your replies and apologies for the slow reply.

@BFBSM - I think you're right, or at least certainly on the right track. Thanks for that - i've taken a look around the SLV website and it seems to be a treasure trove of information. They have the audio recordings of the 169 interviews she did in their 'Oral History' collection. Many of which were WW1 veterans interviewed for The Anzacs. Their WW1 collection looks impressive. See here: http://www.slv.vic.gov.au/node/821

@WhiteStarLine - Thanks very much for your post. All interesting stuff. I have since been in touch with Henry Dadswell's son and bought a copy of the diary, though am yet to read it as i had it delivered to my sister in Brisbane and I live in London. You've prompted me to chase her up to send it on! Also you were right - My grandfather was in the 8th under Tivey. I will search you posts for the pictures you mention.

Thanks again for your responses - It looks like I'll have to plan a trip to Melbourne at some point. In the meantime, I'm off to Flanders over Easter for a bit of a look!

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Thanks again for your responses - It looks like I'll have to plan a trip to Melbourne at some point. In the meantime, I'm off to Flanders over Easter for a bit of a look!

Hosko,

If there is something you are specifically interested in, I am happy to organise a visit.

Mark

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Looking at what's written in PAS's book, it would appear that she has possibly conducted an interview with Oliver Hoskin or at least referred to a recording of an interview.

Cheers,

Tim L.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hosko,

If there is something you are specifically interested in, I am happy to organise a visit.

Mark

Hi Mark - If you've got special knowledge of the workings of the State Library of Victoria and, in particular, looking up this kind of thing (ie. the papers of PAS etc), my Dad is planning a trip to the SLV from QLD next Monday (2nd March) to try and track down a bit more information about his father Oliver Hoskin. Service #48). If you have any tips, hints or pointers it'd be greatly appreciated. He's only going to be there for the day so anything that helps him would be great. Reply here or PM me if you've got any advice you're willing to give.

Andrew

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Andrew,

PM sent. If I can assist anyone else with anything at the SLV, getting copies, etc. PM me, and I'll see if I can help out.

Mark

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