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Craig Deayton

47th Battalion AIF

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Craig Deayton

Dear All

I am presently writing the history of the 47th Australian Battalion and would be very interested to hear from anyone with information, especially photographs or documents relating to the 47th Bn, or anyone with a relative in the Bn. I would be more than happy to pass any information on if I have it if you have an enquiry on the 47th.

I posted this topic last year and received some very helpful and interesting replies, so in hope that anyone with a connection who missed my message last year sees this one....

Many thanks in anticipation

Craig Deayton

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Bob Doneley

Craig,

I can't remember if I replied to your post with information about Richmond Eather, 15th Bn, 47th Bn and 25th Bn?

If not, here is some cut & pastes:

1) From the Australian Dictionary of Biography:

EATHER, RICHMOND CORNWALLIS (1888-1966), soldier, station-owner and manager, was born on 18 January 1888 at Goodooga, New South Wales, son of John Rowland Eather, storekeeper, and his wife Hannah Anne, née Crothers, both native-born. He was educated at Goodooga Public School but left at 13 to work in local shearing sheds. In 1907 he moved to Richmond, Queensland, and later to Muttaburra and Hughenden, to manage properties owned by his uncles, R., T. and H. Crothers.

Eather enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force as a private on 17 June 1915, embarked with reinforcements for the 15th Battalion in August and saw action at Gallipoli. In March 1916 he was transferred to the 47th Battalion which reached France in June and in August-September fought in the battles of Pozières and Mouquet Farm. Eather was awarded the Military Medal for personal bravery during this period. Promoted sergeant in September, he was posted to the 6th Officer Cadet Battalion at Oxford, England, and in March 1917 was commissioned second lieutenant in the 25th Battalion.

Early in June 1918 a series of minor counter-blows was made by British and Australian formations to relieve pressure on their French allies. On 10 June near Morlancourt the 25th took its objective in a twenty-minute assault. As the battalion's intelligence officer, Eather showed conspicuous gallantry by maintaining communications with the attacking companies after the signals officer had been wounded. He repeatedly passed through heavy enemy barrages to bring in the wounded as well as to maintain telephone lines to the forward companies, and for these actions was awarded the Military Cross.

In September the allied offensive against the Hindenburg line began, and on 3 October the 25th Battalion spearheaded its brigade's attack in a two-corps assault on the Beaurevoir line. Eather again showed great bravery and initiative for which he won a Bar to his Military Cross. The battalion attacked at 6 a.m. across three-quarters of a mile (1.2 km) of open country and, after hard fighting, captured its objective. Eather then went across to the right flank under heavy fire and returned with information that the neighbouring battalion was unable to move forward. The 25th immediately established a flank defence to protect against an enemy counter-attack. Eather then went further forward towards the enemy line and brought back valuable information for guiding the next phase of this crucial operation. He was transferred to the 26th Battalion later in the month.

On 13 March 1919 at Knockbreda, Antrim, Ireland, Eather married Mary Jane McFarlane Longmore, a British Army nurse who had won the Royal Red Cross. They returned to Australia in May and until 1927 managed a family property at Muttaburra. Eather then managed Sylvania station near Hughenden and eventually bought the partners out; in 1954 he sold Sylvania and retired to Warwick. He was a prominent citizen in the Hughenden, Richmond and Muttaburra districts and served several terms on the Flinders Shire Council. His main hobbies were horse-racing and exhibiting hacks and hunters in shows. Survived by his wife and two daughters, he died on 21 April 1966 at Warwick.

Select Bibliography

C. E. W. Bean, The Australian Imperial Force in France, 1916-18 (Syd, 1929, 1933, 1937, 1942); London Gazette, 8 Dec 1916, 24 Sept 1918, 8 Mar 1919; North Queensland Register, 23 Apr 1966; war diaries, 25th and 47th Battalions, A.I.F. (Australian War Memorial); private information. More on the resources

Author: Darryl McIntyre

Print Publication Details: Darryl McIntyre, 'Eather, Richmond Cornwallis (1888 - 1966)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 8, Melbourne University Press, 1981, pp 405-406.

The Australian War Memorial has a copy of his MM citation.

http://www.awm.gov.au/honours/awm28/person.asp?p=8110

His medals and a photo are displayed in the 25th/49th Battalion Officer's Mess in Toowoomba. I might have some photos of him around, as an officer in the 25th Battalion.

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mctaz

Craig,

I have some material and photos relating to Pte. J.H. Stewart MM.

He enlisted in the 15th Bn in Tassie, but when the "doubling" happened in 1916 he became part of the newly formed 47th.

I have access to several photos of Jack Stewart, and also this one.

http://www.40th-bn.org/images/47th-bn-ncos.jpg

Cheers

Jim

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marmi01

Hi Craig,

Just wondering if your book will be out anytime soon?

Regards,

Mick

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Craig Deayton

Dear Jim

For some reason I missed your email in 2007. Many thanks for the photo - I think the place is the Hospice St. Victor at Rivery (Amiens) but I haven't seen a similar shot so I'd be interested in where you turned it up. I would also be interested in a photo of J.H.Stewart and note he won his MM at Passchendaele. So - apologies for not getting back to you, but if you're still out there - I love to hear from you again

Regards

Craig Deayton

Craig,

I have some material and photos relating to Pte. J.H. Stewart MM.

He enlisted in the 15th Bn in Tassie, but when the "doubling" happened in 1916 he became part of the newly formed 47th.

I have access to several photos of Jack Stewart, and also this one.

http://www.40th-bn.org/images/47th-bn-ncos.jpg

Cheers

Jim

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mctaz

Craig,

The image of the NCO's came from Jack Stewart MM's family, as did the other images i have.

I'm just changing PC's at present & have stuff everywhere, but I'll look the images out for you.

The family have given me the okay to use them in any way.

The one with the NCO's was badly damaged as it was quite large but had been folded in quarters and sent by mail back to Australia.

Regards

Jim

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Aaron Pegram

Hi Craig,

You've actually just answered a question I posted about 30 seconds ago about whether a history of the 47th Bn exists. You may be interested in AWM224, the unit manuscript histories, some of which were later turned out to be published at unit histories. There appears to be one relating to the 47th Bn, '47th Australian Infantry Battalion: Operations' under the manuscript number MSS178. I would be interested in looking at it for my own brief research on the 47th Bn at Dernancourt, so sing out if you cant make it to Canberra to have a look.

Cheers,

Aaron

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Fedelmar

Craig ... one of my Albany Boys was in the 47th. #1124 Cpl Albert James MURRAY MM RTA and WND twice.

I will have to check my work and see if I have gathered any more information on him.

Bright Blessings

Sandra

PS:

If you PM me I can give you a p/graph of his burial details. Other than that all I have is what is in his service record and the citation for the MM.

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aus

Hi Craig,

My name is Rod Tredgold from Brisbane I am extremely interested in finding as much information on the 47th Battalion AIF

My Great Grandfather was Lance Corporal Trevor Thompson #1964, he received amongst others the Military medal for bravery on August 8/9 1918 at Mouguet Farm, (the citation is in the AWM records) when he transferred to the 48th at the end of May after the Battalion was disbanded. I also have a pic of the last 73 from the original 1100 taken at Hastieres with no attendance name list. He was a loco driver from Cooran Qld, was gassed at Paeschendale and died in 1962 aged 79.

Yours Faithfully

Rod Tredgold

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mick_ryan

Craig

If you are interested, I have the group tp Albert Victor Paterson MM. Have some great photos, and some ephemera relating to his service with the 47th. He later went on to be CO of the VDC in WW2.

His identical twin brother also served with him in the 47th, as well as another brother KIA with the Engineers, and his father enlisted as a Reverend. Have a lovely group family photo of them all.

Mick

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Craig Deayton

Thanks Aaron

Unfortunately MSS178 is only a one page summary of battles, formation, disbandment etc. for 47 Bn.The only other history is a chapter in Broinowski's 'Tasmania's War Record' which was written in the 20s. Peter Edgar's book on the 13th Brigade has a good chapter on Dernancourt and Mitchell's 'Backs to the Wall' (48 Bn - just republished) has a riveting eye-witness account. Hopefully my book will be published for the 47th's account of the battle. As you might know, there was considerable controversy after the battle and a certain amount of ill-feeling between 12 & 13 Bdes about who 'gave way' first. It's still not settled! Hopefully my book will shed some more light on the issue. Thanks again - I have been back and forth a few times and there's still a couple of things I'd like to check, so if you could look at a couple of things, I'd be very grateful.

Regards

Hi Craig,

You've actually just answered a question I posted about 30 seconds ago about whether a history of the 47th Bn exists. You may be interested in AWM224, the unit manuscript histories, some of which were later turned out to be published at unit histories. There appears to be one relating to the 47th Bn, '47th Australian Infantry Battalion: Operations' under the manuscript number MSS178. I would be interested in looking at it for my own brief research on the 47th Bn at Dernancourt, so sing out if you cant make it to Canberra to have a look.

Cheers,

Aaron

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Craig Deayton

Dear Sandra

Grateful for any information you can find on him. I'm new to this, so P/M? Do you need my email?

Regards

Craig ... one of my Albany Boys was in the 47th. #1124 Cpl Albert James MURRAY MM RTA and WND twice.

I will have to check my work and see if I have gathered any more information on him.

Bright Blessings

Sandra

PS:

If you PM me I can give you a p/graph of his burial details. Other than that all I have is what is in his service record and the citation for the MM.

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Craig Deayton

Dear Mick

I would certainly like to see your photos. I have seen one of the brothers in the Imlay collection (it's now posted on the AWM site) and I have a little information on them, but would certainly welcome more. I think they get a mention in Mitchell's 'Backs to the Wall' and I think I have a photo of Albert as CO of the VDC.

Would certainly like to see more.

Regards

Craig

If you are interested, I have the group tp Albert Victor Paterson MM. Have some great photos, and some ephemera relating to his service with the 47th. He later went on to be CO of the VDC in WW2.

His identical twin brother also served with him in the 47th, as well as another brother KIA with the Engineers, and his father enlisted as a Reverend. Have a lovely group family photo of them all.

Mick

Many thanks Rod

Craig

Recommmendation from AWM

Regards Rod Tredgold

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Guest dwhhwd

Graig,

My Uncle, Ernest Christian HENDERSON, Service No 2432a, was a member of the 47th Bn from 22 Mar 17 (when he was transferred in from the 49th) to 25 May 18 (when he was transferred to the 45th Bn). I have a photo of him during this time with his twin brother William David HENDERSON who was a Farrier in the 4th Div Train.

Ern was wounded (GSW to back and neck) on 11th October 1917 and I have been trying to find out what the 47th was involved in on this day. I know that the 47th was part of the attack at Passchendaele on 12th Oct 1917, but I'm not sure if they were active on the 11th (raids etc). Would you be able to shed any light on the activities of the 47th on that day.

Regards

David Henderson

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Guest Wayne Cowan

David, in reply to your query as to what the 47th was doing on 11th, here is an extract from the unit war diary for the 10th to 12th

Wayne Cowan

Oct10th Orders received proceed forward area Battalion left STEENVOORDE area. 7am entrained ABEELE Stn K26C, at 9am detrained at YPRES and proceeded by road to GORDON Area I8d.

In position at 10am, transport lines situated at H22b (Sheet 27). All ranks fully equipped with fighting order. Scouts reconnoitring forward areas. Battn moved out at 5pm, took up positions on ANZAC RIDGE, Coys in position at midnight. HQ situated at D 26 b 8 3.

Weather conditions horrible and going very slow - constantly bogged, country in a very bad state and much churned up by shell fire.

No cover for men, all ranks Cherry (that is what it says)

Nucleous party moved out of STEENVOORDE Area at 6am for CAESTRE. 33 specialists moved out, total of 9 off 223 O/R remained behind at CAESTRE.

Oct11th Orders received for attack on PASSCHENDALE Ridge, Coy Commanders , Specialist Officers proceeded forward to reconnoitre area. Capt WE EATHER (O/C A Coy) wounded whilst on reconnaissance duty.

All arrangements made for attack and orders issued as per B.O.O. No 159 (Appendix 3). All ranks fighting order and awaiting time to move off. Weather still bad and going very heavy. Men in good spirit and waiting to “go over”.

ZONNEBEKE

PASSCHENDAELE (Map ZONNEBEKE NE 1:10,000)

Oct12th Troops move off about midnight to place of assembly, and proceeded via ZONNEBEKE to jumping off tape, previously marked out. 12th Aust Inf Bde ordered to attack ridge from D 12 d 91 to D 17 d 95 30. 47th Battn allotted frontage A18 d 97 to D 17 d 95 30 as first objective, termed RED LINE. Attack to take place in conjunction with 2nd ANZAC Corps on left, and second objective termed BLUE LINE allotted to 46th Battn, C Coy to preceed at ZERO + 8 mins in extended order and in perfect liaison. B Coy extended over whole area and moving as Battn Reserve. Rain has fallen during proceeding night and country almost impassable, being very boggy and shell holes full of water. Notwithstanding the latter, these troops made excellent progress.

Battn H Qrs moved forward and took up position at D 17 C 6b 9.

At 5.45am, enemy heavily shelled Battn H Qrs, shelling killing 24 and wounding 10 men.

Nearly all signallers, runners and scouts casualties, thus upsetting all arrangements for communications forward. Many valuable lives lost that will be hard to replace.

Information received that men going strong on ridge, prisoners coming in freely.

Lieut WH BUNCOMBE killed, objective reached with fairly light casualties, position being consolidated.

Enemy concentrating for counter attack, which was beaten off with Lewis Gun and Rifle fire.

Left flank in the air owing to failure of 9th Aust Bde (3rd Divn) to “cover up” flanks. In really dangerous position and threatened with envelopment - notwithstanding this, troops held on - dispositions made accordingly.

At 4.10pm enemy counter attacked in force, and although garrison depleted in numbers, successfully beat off attack.

At 5pm, enemy concentrations reported - flank still in the air, and apparently left Brigade doing nothing to assist us. Troops gradually withdrawn along YPRES ROULERS Railway, fighting rear action and inflicting heavy casualties on the enemy.

At 7pm, troops holding line in front of original “Jumping Off Tape”, shell holes occupied, and men ready to defend position at all costs.

http://' target="_blank"> Lt Col AP IMLAY DSO Commanding Officer wounded by shell fire Capt BRACK takes charge of Battn. Co loss keenly felt at a critical stage of the operation. Casualties amongst officers heavy though not serious.

Remnants of 3 Coys in charge of 4595 Sgt HEADING who did splendid work set a fine example to all.

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Guest jce4019
Dear All

I am presently writing the history of the 47th Australian Battalion and would be very interested to hear from anyone with information, especially photographs or documents relating to the 47th Bn, or anyone with a relative in the Bn. I would be more than happy to pass any information on if I have it if you have an enquiry on the 47th.

I posted this topic last year and received some very helpful and interesting replies, so in hope that anyone with a connection who missed my message last year sees this one....

Many thanks in anticipation

Craig Deayton

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nouter10

Does anyone have any information or stories on the battalions role in the Battle of Messines. My Great Great Uncle was in B Company and was killed on the first day of the battle (June 7th 1917).

Regards,

Nathan.

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Andrew P

Hi Nathan

Have you checked the 47th Battalion unit war diary on the website of the Australia War Memorial?

Cheers

Andrew

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dongough

Hi Craig

I've just joined this forum & was quite excited to read about your project.

Has this history been written & if so, where might I obtain a copy?

My Grandfather's brother Pvt William Robert Tedford (3233) served in the 47th Battalion and was killed at Dernancourt on the 5th of April 1918.

Kind regards

Don Gough

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cdeayton

Hi Don

Apologies for the long delay in replying but I've only just checked back into the forum. The book is finished, edited and is now with the Army History Unit who are doing the maps, indexing and final proofing. I'm not sure of the publishing date but hopefully not too far away.

I suppose you're aware of the Red Cross report for Private William Tedford? It's important for the issue of the murder of Australian prisoners at Dernancourt (one confirmed case) and the belief that the 13th Brigade (52 Bn) retreated, abandoning the 47th - a view which caused much resentment between the 12th & 13th Brigades and was still being argued over well into the 1920s!

If there's anything I can help with, please let me know and if you send me your email, I add you to my list of people to inform when the book's available

Best wishes

Craig Deayton

Hi Craig

I've just joined this forum & was quite excited to read about your project.

Has this history been written & if so, where might I obtain a copy?

My Grandfather's brother Pvt William Robert Tedford (3233) served in the 47th Battalion and was killed at Dernancourt on the 5th of April 1918.

Kind regards

Don Gough

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Guest michaelsmythe

gday craig, my grandmothers uncle Sydney Alfred Kennedy service number 2915 was in the 47th he enlisted in brisbane, he was killed at messines on the 7th of june 1917, i found his service records online but no photo, he was only at the front two months when he was killed,it mentions he was buried 750 yards east of messines. im looking at what info i can get from the awm site, im going to make a private documentary in the near future on him so im trying to obtain as much info as i can on the battalion particularly on the 6th 7th and 8th of june 1917 cheers mike smythe

I am presently writing the history of the 47th Australian Battalion and would be very interested to hear from anyone with information, especially photographs or documents relating to the 47th Bn, or anyone with a relative in the Bn. I would be more than happy to pass any information on if I have it if you have an enquiry on the 47th.

post-49320-1251941442.jpg

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pat geary

Craig,

I have a photograph of Thomas Henry Kelly who served with 47AIF and was KIA at Messines on the 7 June 17. His cousin Edward Kelly is one of my "locals" and the photograph is from "The Herald" a newspaper published in Lisburn in N. Ireland. Another paper, the Standard, claims that he (Thomas) visited Edward's family at Christmas 1916 although there is no mention in his service record (AWM Series No. 2455/1 Barcode 3011455) of him having been on leave. The picture is too large to post but if you are interested PM an email address and I'll send it on.

Pat

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Guest velcro_doobie

gday craig, my grandmothers uncle Sydney Alfred Kennedy service number 2915 was in the 47th he enlisted in brisbane, he was killed at messines on the 7th of june 1917, i found his service records online but no photo, he was only at the front two months when he was killed,it mentions he was buried 750 yards east of messines. im looking at what info i can get from the awm site, im going to make a private documentary in the near future on him so im trying to obtain as much info as i can on the battalion particularly on the 6th 7th and 8th of june 1917 cheers mike smythe

Hi Mike,

Doing some research myself on my great grandfather, Auburn Gilbert service No 93 47th, who was also killed the same day and has exactly the same information 750 yards east of messines. My grandfather was later exhumed and then buried at the british cemetery just out side the town. I bought a book recently which you may have, Anzac to the Hindenburg line, which is about 9th infantry raised in Queensland (where my great grandfather joined in 1914) its quite good and gives some details, its an imperial war museum book, i got mine from amazon.

Regards

Stuart

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