Tracing your Great War Ancestors: Gallipoli
By Simon Fowler
(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