Brothers in arms played vi­tal role

Mercury (Hobart) - - TALKING POINT - Two sons from a Ho­bart fam­ily earned the Mil­i­tary Cross in World War II. tells their story

rightly en­shrine veter­ans such as Alec Campbell for their service to our coun­try, but the sto­ries of other Tas­ma­nian ser­vice­men and women de­serve our recog­ni­tion.

In 1916 and ’17, a reader of ei­ther the Lon­don Gazette or Com­mon­wealth Gazette could be for­given for be­liev­ing both had been vic­tim of a ty­po­graph­i­cal er­ror.

At first glance, it ap­pears a Lieu­tenant Maxwell of the 52nd In­fantry Bat­tal­ion, has been listed twice for the same award — the pres­ti­gious Mil­i­tary Cross. On closer ex­am­i­na­tion the cru­cial de­tail emerges — dif­fer­ent ini­tials.

Of six sons born to Craw­ford and Caro­line

Chris Tal­bot

Maxwell, of Ho­bart, the youngest, Dun­can, 22, was first to “sign on”, at Pontville in 1914 and al­lot­ted to the 3rd Light Horse Reg­i­ment. Three weeks later, in Syd­ney, the next old­est sib­ling, Arthur, 26, signed up and took as­sign­ment to the 6th Light Horse Reg­i­ment.

If these di­rec­tors sim­ply sat back and rolled over they would be grossly derelict in their obli­ga­tions as di­rec­tors.

And the fact is TasWater

The brothers united at Quinn’s Post, Gal­lipoli, 1915, op­er­at­ing as a snip­ing team. Upon with­drawal from Gal­lipoli the Maxwell boys found they were no longer light horse troop­ers but newly minted 2nd Lieu­tenants of In­fantry in the newly cre­ated 52nd Bat­tal­ion. And so to France.

They dis­em­barked at Mar­seilles and made their way to a Western Front de­but in the Petil­lon Sec­tor, west of Ar­men­tieres. On July 11, or­ders came for First, Sec­ond and Fourth Aus­tralian In­fantry Di­vi­sions to move south, to the Somme, with im­me­di­ate ef­fect.

Ten days be­fore, the Bri­tish Army had suf­fered its largest has solid le­gal ad­vice that says the takeover by the Hodg­man Gov­ern­ment is clearly un­law­ful.

The Leg­isla­tive Coun­cil, ca­su­alty fig­ure for one day — about 60,000 ca­su­al­ties, of which about 20,000 were fa­tal­i­ties.

On July 23, the 1st Aus­tralian In­fantry Di­vi­sion, fresh from Ar­men­tieres, mounted the first suc­cess­ful as­sault on this heav­ily de­fended strong­point. They suc­ceeded in crack­ing the first line of de­fence, gain­ing ground within Pozieres it­self.

Through­out Au­gust, in a se­ries of bru­tal frontal as­saults un­der an al­most con­tin­ual del­uge of fright­en­ingly ac­cu­rate en­emy ar­tillery, Aus­tralian in­fantry of all three di­vi­sions held the vil­lage and reached out to the com­mand­ing space of the ridge top. Hold­ing their gains which in re­cent times has shown it is pre­pared to stand up to the pop­ulist non­sense of the Hodg­man Gov­ern­ment, must re­ject Gutwein’s folly. was ex­pen­sive; all three in­fantry di­vi­sions left Pozieres, on re­lief, re­sem­bling blankeyed, haunted shad­ows of the bold young soldiers head­ing the other way only days be­fore.

On Au­gust 31, bri­gade or­ders for the next as­sault were is­sued to of­fi­cers and from sun­set they be­gan fil­ter­ing their men into the front­line and “jump­ing off” trenches ahead of the front­line.

Once in po­si­tion, bat­tal­ion in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cer Lt Arthur Maxwell moved along the line check­ing watch syn­chro­ni­sa­tion and unit ori­en­ta­tion. It was a good thing he did — one com­pany had be­come dis­ori­ented in the dark and was fac­ing at right Un­der the pro­posed law Mr Gutwein puts for­ward that he can seize the as­sets of the share­hold­ers — lo­cal coun­cils — with­out hav­ing to pay just an­gles to its in­tended line.

First reports re­ceived at 0640 hours by 13th Bri­gade head­quar­ters, crowded into a dugout hard by Pozieres ceme­tery, boded well — Mou­quet Farm may be cap­tured this day!

Be­fore the farm could be cleared or de­fence lines es­tab­lished, heavy and ac­cu­rate ar­tillery shells be­gan to rain down and through a hail of dirt, de­bris and dust could be dimly seen heavy numbers of en­emy soldiers rush­ing for­ward to re­cover the ground just lost.

The ad­vanced sec­tions of 51st, around and in the farm, were, af­ter a bloody fight, de­feated in de­tail. On the right, 49th Bat­tal­ion had

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.