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The Nek, 7 August 1915


Bill Woerlee
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For those interested in this part of the 10th Light Horse Regt's history and participation in the charge at The Nek, some more information from a newspaper article in Perth in The Daily News on Tuesday 18 January 1916, throws some more light (and questions) on officer participants. Thanks to Bill Sellars for alerting me to this. It is the fourth instalment from an officers diary and this instalment ends with a listing of officers present on the day of the charge and squadrons with. In A Sqdn he has named Todd, Fry, Heller, McMaster, Turnbull and Throssell. In B he has Piesse, Rowan, Kidd, Craig, McBean (as an officer) and Jackson. In C he has Scott, Anderson, Saul, Howard and Roskams. McBean was commissioned after 7 August.

 

I don't agree with some of these names as they were not officers until after the charge, such as Anderson, Saul and Howard. Roskams was in A by my reckoning.

MacDonald, Burges and Hamlin are missing in all this and all were officers prior to the charge and in C Sqdn. This series of letters, I think, without looking too hard yet, might be Paddy Hamlin as he refrains from mentioning himself, but that needs more rigorous scrutiny. Anyway, there is some stuff in there I missed for the book and it all adds to the narrative.

 

It seems on August 6 Major Love went around all the trenches and saps, lettering them and issuing sketches of the trenches and the positions the relevant troops were to move from and to for the attack and behind the 8th LH. Each officer with an NCO was also taken around and shown positions and what direction and trenches to attack, so a thorough preliminary preparation. This I had not recorded. Learning all the time!

 

 

PS It now seems this unnamed officer is more likely Major AJ Love who arrived back in Fremantle/Perth in mid November 1915, which allows for the series of accounts to be published, whereas Hamlin did not arrive to Christmas Day 1915. More to come.

 

Ian

 

 

Edited by gilly100
Fact check on unnamed officer
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Dear Ian

        Regarding your  Email on the 10th LH  I readily admit that you know far more about the battle at the Nek than I do. However ,trying to give any assistance I can, on page 623 of "The Story of Anzac" Part 2 Charles Bean has given a diagram of the dispositions of officers in both the 8th and the 10th Light Horse in the ill-fated attack. Does it help you in any way?

                            Regards

                                   John White

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Not really mate. I am well aware of that snippet in Bean and found much of it wrong in comparison to some that were there and recorded some of their experience.  Tom Kidd for example was and claimed to be in the 3rd line and had Harper and Throssell in that line as well.

I am pretty sure the newspaper accounts are Love as Kidd did some also and we know it was him In the other accounts, sketch included.

Cheers

Ian

 

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