[Editor: These paragraphs, relating to the First World War, are extracts from the news section of the Portland Guardian (Portland, Vic.), 28 June 1916.]
Wednesday, June 28, 1916.
INVALIDED HOME. — Private A. J. Hogan, who, as intimated in these columns some weeks ago, was invalided home from Active Service, has been, since the arrival of the hospital ship, in hospital in Melbourne. His mother, Mrs M. Hogan who is at present in Melbourne, has informed the Mayor that Private Hogan is progressing satisfactorily, and will in all probability be permitted to return to Portland at the end of the week. Particulars of the exact date of this arrival will be available in time for preparations to be made for a suitable welcome home.
RED CROSS. — Saturday night suppers at the Red Cross Depot are again becoming popular, and last Saturday night a brisk trade was carried on. We have been requested to state that a specially dainty supper will be provided on Saturday next for 3d.
SHIRE ELECTION. — We are informed that the ratepayers of the West Riding of the Shire of Portland are desirous of having the vacancy caused by the resignation of Cr. W. McK. Shaw, through enlisting for Active Service, filled. With this object in view Mr Gavin Shaw, of Pleasant Hills, Grassdale, is to be presented with a requisition asking him to consent to be nominated for the vacancy.
IN shooting at an aeroplane the rifle is aimed, not at the machine, but at a point about six lengths ahead of it. To hit the centre of a Zeppelin the rifleman aims at its nose.
HAMILTON GIFT OF TRAVELLING KITCHEN. — The mayor of Hamilton (Mr. S. L. Officer) has been informed by Mr A. S. Rodgers, M.H.R., that the travelling kitchen presented by the people of Hamilton and district to the Defence department twelve months ago has at last been put to the use for which it was intended. It was suitably inscribed, allotted to the 22nd Battalion, and is now on the way to the front, where its benefits will no doubt be fully appreciated by the soldiers.
WAR COMMITTEE. — At the meeting of the Federal Parliamentary War Committee held on Thursday a letter was received from Mr Rodgers, M.H.R., in which he stated that he had offered, in connection with the scheme for repatriation of soldiers, to relieve the State War Council from all responsibility in regard to providing for any soldiers who prior to enlistment were resident in either Corangamite or Wannon, and offering to give any assistance generally as soon as the Wannon and Corangamite districts had been fully dealt with. A sum of £300 was received from the Pine Creek and District League, being an additional donation for the relief of Australian sick and wounded soldiers and their dependants. It was decided to divide this amount amongst the State War Councils.
COAL FOR TRANSPORTS. — Mr Jensen, Minister of the Navy, announces that he has made an agreement with the Sydney Coal Lumpers’ Union, under which a naval transport coaling battalion is formed. Two union officials have been granted honorary commissions in the Royal Australian Naval Reserve, and the union has agreed that under no circumstances whatever shall members of the battalion cease work or strike while on transports or naval cargo ships.
Writing to his mother at Coonooer bridge, from France, Private N. R. Sanderson relates a story of a remarkable omen which is said to have happened in Paris. “There is a very old bell in Paris. During the Napoleonic War it fell, and in three months the war was over. The same thing happened during the Franco-Prussian war, and the bell was again re-fixed. A few weeks ago the same bell fell again, and did not break. If omens mean anything, and a person is at all superstitious, the war will be soon over.”
COMPULSORY TRAINING. — All men who attain the ages of 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22, during this year are notified that a compulsory muster parade of their classes will be held at the drill hall, Hamilton, on Thursday, 29th June, at 7.30 p.m. says the “Spectator”. All men of the above ages residing within a radius of five miles of Hamilton are expected to attend this parade. Men who have been exempted from citizen force training are expected to be present with exemption certificates on record books. Men of the above ages who have been certified by the medical officer to be unfit for training will also attend this parade. Men unable to attend must notify the officer commanding C Company, 72 Infantry, Hamilton, of the reason for non-attendance within 24 hours of the parade. Men having uniforms will wear same. The dress is drill order with caps.
AUSTRALIA’S HEROES. — In the hundred and eightieth casualty list published on Tuesday morning are the following names: Injured — Pte. H. K. Brown, North Hamilton, Ill — Sergt. H. G. Roulston, Coleraine; Pte. J. Mitchell, Edenhope; Pte. J. Trotter, Hamilton. Returned to duty — Pte. J. T. Cook, Casterton; Pte. O. R. Luhrs, Cavendish; Pte, J. O’Brien, Merino.
In Hobart the Chief Justice, Sir H. Nicholls, appealed to young men to join rifle clubs for home defence. There were 104 such clubs in Tasmania, with a roll of 6,000, but there should be at least, he said, 16,000 members of rifle clubs in the State.
When dancers arrived at Lithgow (N.S.W.) Town Hall to participate in a ball promoted by bachelors, they found the walls plastered with recruiting posters. During the evening the music included, “Your King and Country Need You” and “Boys of the Dardanelles,” played in dance time. The holding of a dance promoted by bachelors eligible for military service has created much adverse comment in the town.
MENTIONED IN DESPATCHES. — Lieut. W. A. Gull, who was a scholar at the Sandford State School, has been mentioned in a despatch. The circumstances which gained for Lieut. Gull the distinction of “Mention in Despatches” are that on April 25-26, anniversary of “Anzac Day,” “somewhere” in France, he crept out toward the German trenches, and getting close enough to hear the Germans talking was able to locate position of German gun instruments for directing fire. He dropped four bombs into the German trenches, and made a hole, into which he crept and lay down. Flashlights were thrown over the ground, which was immediately swept by artillery, machine gun, and rifle fire, with terrible din for half an hour. Then Lieut. Gull crept back to the British (Australian) trenches and reported, and his information, that enabled the British artillery to locate exactly and destroy the gunnery implements of the enemy, was of such importance that the soldier was “Mentioned in Despatches.” But this was not the only meritorious exploit of the soldier referred to, who is now only 21 years of age. He took part in the Gallipoli campaign, and afterwards in France ran out between the British and German trenches under fierce fire, and brought in a wounded British soldier. In doing so he had so narrow an escape that wind from a shell, which burst close beside him, blew off his cap.
Sergeant J. L. Guest, in charge of the Casterton company of Citizens Forces, has received from the Defence department notice that all men who will attain the ages between 18 and 22 years before the close of this year are required to attend Compulsory Muster Drill on Saturday, July 1.
Portland Guardian (Portland, Vic.), 28 June 1916, p. 2
Active Service = involvement in military operations as a member of the armed forces (army, navy, or air force); on operational duty in a war zone as a member of a country’s military forces
d. = a reference to a penny, or pennies (pence); the “d” was an abbreviation of “denarii”, e.g. as used in “L.S.D.” or “£sd” (pounds, shillings, and pence), which refers to coins used by the Romans, as per the Latin words “librae” (or “libra”), “solidi” (singular “solidus”), and “denarii” (singular “denarius”)
din = a loud noise which continues for a significant amount of time, especially an unpleasant noise
Franco-Prussian war = (1870-1871) a war between France and the North German Confederation (led by Prussia); France declared war on Prussia on 16 July 1870, but the Germans proved to be superior in numbers, tactics, and use of technology, Paris fell to the Germans, France was beaten, and an armistice was agreed to; a peace treaty (the Treaty of Frankfurt) was signed, which awarded Germany five billion francs in war reparations and allocated some disputed border areas (Alsace and Lorraine) to Germany (the conflict was also known as the Franco-German War, or the War of 1870
Lieut. = an abbreviation of “Lieutenant”
M.H.R. = Member of the House of Representatives (someone elected to the lower house of federal parliament)
Pte. = Private (the lowest rank in the army; aside from “recruit” in the modern army, being someone who has not as yet passed basic training)
Sergt. = an abbreviation of “Sergeant”
[Editor: Changed “Grsssdale” to “Grassdale”; “alloted” to “allotted”; “ther dependants” to “their dependants”; “radious” to “radius”; “April 25 26” to “April 25-26”.]