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Remembered Today:

Lost Gallipoli grave


grantmal
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Dear All,

Whilst researching the 3rd Australian Field Ambulance at Gallipoli the following sketch was discovered:

post-4061-1125982631.jpg

Frank Hudson and Alf Eccles were both killed at the landing, and the sketch shows their grave a short distance along the beach from where their stretcher bearer section came ashore. They were killed either side of John Simpson, who later became 'The Man with the Donkey'.

Hudson and Eccles are both listed on the Lone Pine Memorial as having no known grave. Their original grave was still clearly marked in late November 1915 (according to a comrade's letter), so presumably the cross was lost or removed after the evacuation.

The shoreline along North Beach has altered, but is the area between the beach and the newly widened road at this point still intact? What chance Hudson and Eccles are still lying there?

Good on you,

Grant

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Grant, it’s nice to hear from you again

Quote: Frank Hudson and Alf Eccles were both killed at the landing, and the sketch shows their grave a short distance along the beach from where their stretcher bearer section came ashore. They were killed either side of John Simpson, who later became 'The Man with the Donkey'.

As I read the above sketch [a great find, by the way] the graves look to me to be very close to the water-line.

I recollect that you have already been in touch with Tom Curran, and at the risk of going over old ground, his 1993 photograph at the top of page 214 of his ‘Across the Bar’ bears the caption “The region where 3 Field Ambulance (and Simpson) came ashore, nearly opposite the Sphinx. Much of the beach has since been eroded away.” [my emphasis] This does not suggest to me that there is much ‘chance Hudson and Eccles are still lying there?’

Best of luck with your further researches and don’t forget to let us know about publication

Regards

Michael D.R.

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Thanks Michael.

The sketch is a beauty...lots of gems being uncovered, hopefully a few more to go.

Finally made it over to Gallipoli in May, staying at the CWGC. Unfortunately the sketch wasn't with me, though was able to locate C Section's landing site from this Bert Baker photo.

The shot was taken in December '15, on the spot Bert came ashore on April 25th. It appears to be just north of the first pier. The bodies of Hudson & Eccles must have been carried along the beach a stretch, away from the dressing station being established, before they were buried.

It's difficult to know how accurate the perspective of the sketch is. The beach has certainly changed in depth.

Have managed to get a few politicians onside with the book, so looking forward to a boost in resources to finish it off. Simpson & his donkey are back in the news here as part of a govt push of 'values' in schools.......should be interesting.

Good on you,

kind regards,

Grant

post-4061-1126256956.jpg

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Grant,

This is a 'similar' photo to your last one looking north but this is taken slightly further up the beach. In the centre foreground there is a small cemetery however this would be to far south to comply with the sketch. Do you think there may be a chance that the sketch was meant as a sort of 'montage' to represent the sacrifice of these two men - the main part of the sketch being the landing area in which they were killed and the graves drawn on the side as a sort of seperate entity - not necessarily where they actually were?

The photo I've attached was taken by my Grandfather who served with the 4th Field Ambulance.

Tim L.

post-2918-1126532651.jpg

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Hello Tim,

I wondered about the accuracy of the sketch, whether it was representational or a montage as you suggested, but later found a letter from one of Hudson & Eccles' section comrades in which he describes a walk along the road at North Beach and a stop to visit the grave. The AWM does have a photo of this grave, taken in 1915, but doesn't have the image on their website. It's on the (extremely long) list for my forthcoming visit to Camberra.

Your grandfather's photos are fantastic.

Good on you,

Grant

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Grant,

Just thought I would throw in my two bobs worth here regarding the graves of Hudson and Eccles.

One thing I can confirm is that, from the sketch, were the graves still in place, they would not have been touched by the recent roadwork in the area. While the road above North Beach has been widened and the area around the work extensively disturbed in places, this did not approach the shore line at the point shown in the sketch.

Looking at photos taken in 1919, I don’t think the shore along North Beach has changed as much as in some other areas. That said, the gentle slope down to the beach is now more of a sheer drop of between one to two metres in many places. Further along, towards where the graves were shown, it is less.

It is likely that the wooden cross was removed after the evacuation, as was the case with most of the Allied graves on the Peninsula, but the graves themselves would probably have been left untouched. The Ottoman troops showed great respect for Allied graves, with only a few cases of damage being recorded.

That said, with the grave seemingly clearly marked by stones and probably recorded prior to the evacuation, it is a little strange that the War Graves unit did not find it.

As I live on the Peninsula, with your permission, I will print out the sketch and have a look around the area the next time I head out to the ANZAC sector. You never know your luck.

Tim, the photo you posted shows, if I am not wrong the footbridge (in left centre) that ran out to the Milo, the ship sunk as a breakwater for the Walkers and Williams piers. If that is the case, the small cemetery in the mid foreground would be on the site of the area constructed for the Dawn Service in 2000.

Cheers

Bill

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Good Sketch!!

Does the Australian War Memorial Know of This?

DOes the Australian ARmy Medical Corps Museum know of this?

THE CWGC Debt oF honour lists both men Grave/Memorial Reference as "69"

at "LONE PINE MEMORIAL"

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I'd appreciate you having a look for me, Bill - I can email you a bigger pic if you need it. I walked up and down that beach twenty times during my May visit, and took a fair few photos of the area; unfortunately none show this particular spot.

I emailed the CWGC a couple of weeks ago on this but haven't heard from them yet.

It does seem strange that the grave was not found in 1919. Perhaps the 1915 photo of the grave

(in the AWM) contains some more clues....I'll get a copy.

Here's a 2005 version of the Bert Baker pic posted above:

post-4061-1126884225.jpg

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I hope to get out that way this weekend. Looking at the sketch I have some idea of the location in relation to the two piers. I have snorkelled over the area and the bases of the piles for both can still be seen. The question is whether the perspective of the sketch is anywhere near right.

Another factor, quite apart from the erosion, is that the Turks built a memorial above North Beach after the evacuation, using a lot of local stone. It was sited near the CWGC cottages. If the graves were unmarked and had had the stones disturbed it is possible the rocks marking the grave could have been picked up. I'm not saying this happened but just looking at all possibilities.

Cheers

Bill

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