Pages from Hunter Region in the Great War



Introduction: The Hunter’s Great War, a century after___________________6

Why was World War I allowed to begin?_____________________________8

Why did Australians go to war for Britain? _________________________10

Newcastle and the Hunter go to war_______________________________12

“Trooper Bluegum”; Voice from the Hunter_________________________16

First Action: Australia takes New Guinea___________________________18

The Great Adventure begins at last________________________________20

The long sea voyage into the unknown_____________________________22

Great Uncle Jack Allsopp goes to war _____________________________24

Where in the world is Constantinople?_____________________________26

The Allied landings at the Gallipoli Peninsula (map)__________________32

Gallipoli: birth of a bloody legend_________________________________34

BHP’s steelworks: a case of perfect timing__________________________48

The first of the wounded return home______________________________50

Famous donkey-man’s link to two Newcastles________________________52

Grim reality of the Dardanelles campaign___________________________54

Lonesome Pine memorial’s Hunter link ____________________________67

Hunter claims for first on and last off beach _________________________68

Private Albert Stewart’s unlucky first______________________________70

Drumming up volunteers for the trenches___________________________72

Maud Butler, the girl who wanted to fight___________________________76

Photographs on the home front___________________________________80

Goodbye Gallipoli, hello Western Front____________________________88

Fromelles: Welcome to the slaughterhouse__________________________94

The Gardner Memorial: tribute to the dead__________________________98

Wartime Australia Day began in July 1915_________________________101

Courage and compassion: volunteer nurses_________________________102

Pozieres: a hell on earth under shellfire____________________________104

The public says “No” to conscription_____________________________114

Fighting for King and Empire in Palestine_________________________116

Worst winter in 40 years: France 1917_____________________________118

Bullecourt: yet another deadly diversion___________________________120

Learning the horrors of poison gas warfare_________________________123

Meanwhile back at home in the Hunter____________________________124

Indigenous diggers made their mark______________________________134

Beneath Hill 60: the victory at Messines___________________________136

Industrial disputes back on the home front_________________________142

Women’s many roles in the war effort_____________________________144

Passchendaele: a name written in blood____________________________146

Jeffries and Bruce: the bravest of the brave_________________________154

William Currey VC___________________________________________155

March 1918: Miracle at Villers Bretonneux_________________________156

Lake sanitary inspector’s efficiency behind the lines__________________163

Monash at Hamel: a pattern for victory____________________________164

Amiens to Montbrehain: last battles_______________________________166

Hard times for prisoners of the Germans___________________________171

Homecoming at last, for those left alive____________________________172

Influenza epidemic killed more people than the war__________________174

Joe Maxwell, VC, MC (and bar), DCM____________________________177

Behind the lines: postcards from all sides__________________________178

Winning the war with music and song_____________________________184

Great War relics of Newcastle Cathedral___________________________188

Newcastle, the spiritual home of Toc H____________________________190

The city’s returned men form a league_____________________________193

Park to beach: Anzac Day in Newcastle____________________________201

The fighting, flying, writing Prince family__________________________216

French orphan was smuggled to Boolaroo__________________________220

Good news: your son is now dead after all_________________________221

Epilogue: long shadows of a long hard war_________________________222

David Dial’s decade-long labour of love___________________________224

Nurses with Hunter links_______________________________________287



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