Trac­ing your Great War An­ces­tors: Gal­lipoli

By Si­mon Fowler

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - THE GUIDE -

(Pen and Sword d, 160 pages, £12.99) The Gal­lipoli cam­paign, in which al­lied armiesmies and navies tried to storm the Dar­danelles and ad­vance to cap­ture Con­stantino­ple, was an ab­so­lute disas­ter. Badly planned and hope­lessly op­ti­mistic, it cost the lives of nearly 60,000 Al­lied troops with more than 250,000 wounded or sick. Re­mem­bered par­tic­u­larly for the par­tic­i­pa­tion of the first Aus­tralian and New Zealand troops (the An­zacs), far more Bri­tish troops took part, so the book con­cen­trates on re­search­ing Bri­tish sol­diers and sailors and ex­plains how to lo­cate in­for­ma­tion on them us­ing dig­i­tal and non-dig­i­tal re­sources.

Many will be fa­mil­iar to fam­ily his­to­ri­ans but some more re­cent, like the Red Cross pris­oner of war doc­u­ments, may not be. As ever, the au­thor has hunted out ob­scure but fas­ci­nat­ing web­sites that will help. A good chap­ter cov­ers re­search­ing units (Gal­lipoli war di­aries haven’t been digi­tised, so a visit to Kew is nec­es­sary to view them) and there are good ex­pla­na­tions of the con­di­tions that the men faced. A chap­ter gives sources for the Em­pire and Com­mon­wealth troops who served and there are de­tails on how to visit the bat­tle­fields and what to see.

Phil To­maselli is a mil­i­tary

fam­ily his­tory ex­pert

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