Forces War Records’ Australian Site Celebrates Anzac Day

ForcesWarRecordsToday is ANZAC DAY – National day of remembrance of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli against the Ottoman Empire during World War I. The first landing of the Anzacs at Gallipoli resulted in 8,709 deaths of Australian soldiers and 2,721 deaths of soldiers from New Zealand. Australians and New Zealanders at home quickly made 25 April the day on which they remembered the sacrifice of those who had died in the war. The remembrance day was later expanded to commemorates all Australians and New Zealanders “who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations” and “the contribution and suffering of all those who have served.”

The following announcement was written by the Forces War Records:

ANZAC soldierFamilies can discover more about their ancestors’ military service history with Forces War Records Australia

A busy day for our Australian site

Today is ANZAC DAY – National day of remembrance and first landing of the Anzacs at Gallipoli. A busy day for our sister Australian site too, visit Forces War Records Australia… https://au.forces-war-records.com/

The Gallipoli campaign was a costly failure for the Allies, with an estimated 27,000 French, and 115,000 British and dominion troops (Great Britain and Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, India, and Newfoundland) killed or wounded.

A Brown Slouch Hat

There is a symbol, we love and adore it,
You see it daily wherever you go.
Long years have passed since our fathers once wore it,
What is the symbol that we should all know?

It’s a brown slouch hat with the side turned up, and it means the world to me.
It’s the symbol of our Nation—the land of liberty.
And as soldiers they wear it, how proudly they bear it, for all the world to see.
Just a brown slouch hat with the side turned up, heading straight for victory.

Don’t you thrill as young Bill passes by?
Don’t you beam at the gleam in his eye?
Head erect, shoulders square, tunic spic and span,
Ev’ry inch a soldier and ev’ry inch a man.

As they swing down the street, aren’t they grand?
Three abreast to the beat of the band,
But what do we remember when the boys have passed along?
Marching by so brave and strong.

Just a brown ….

J Albert & Son, Sydney, 1942

The brown slouch hat

The brown slouch hat was first adopted into Australian military service in 1885 when it was chosen for the newly-formed Victorian Mounted Rifles; its well known high-domed crown and narrow brim, turned up on the left side, so that a rifle or one fitted with a bayonet would not interfere with the head gear, soon became symbolic of the Australian services. It was first worn overseas in the South African War.

When the Defence Act of 1903 combined the colonial defence forces into a single Australian army, the slouch hat became part of the uniform, and an array of embellishments was introduced. The hat featured a lower and indented crown. The turned-up side was held in position by means of a hook and eye fastener, and badges were backed with a distinctive cloth rosette in the corps or regimental colour. A stripe of the same colour was later added to the new seven-fold puggaree. The chinstrap, reduced in width, was adjusted by means of a sliding buckle.

Further standardisation and changes to embellishments occurred from time to time, with the raising of the 1st AIF in 1914, the reorganisation in 1922 of the Australian Military Forces and the introduction of the voluntary militia force in 1930, 1939 and in postwar years.

A shortage of cork helmets led to the widespread use of the slouch hat amongst British Empire forces during the Second Boer War, where it was used by units such as the City Imperial Volunteers (CIV), Imperial Yeomanry, and King Edward’s Horse. After the war, however, many armies rejected the once-popular headwear (as the British Army did in 1905), although it came back into fashion briefly during World War II during the Burma campaign and amongst troops serving in India and Southeast Asia at this time.

Today, similar felt hats are worn by the all Australian services, but only the Australian Army, to which it remains a symbol of distinction and pride, continues to wear the khaki felt hat with its side turned up.

Get the Anzac biscuit recipe….

Anzac biscuit

Makes 25 biscuits Ingredients:

1 cup (90g) rolled oats
1 cup (150g) plain flour
1 cup (220g) firmly packed light brown sugar
½ cup (40g) desiccated coconut
125g butter
2 tablespoons golden syrup
1 tablespoon of water
½ teaspoon bicarbonate of (baking) soda

Method: Preheat oven to 160°C/325°F. Grease oven trays; line with baking paper. Combine oats, sifted flour, sugar and coconut in large bowl. Combine butter, syrup and the water in small saucepan, stir over low heat until smooth; stir in soda. Stir into dry ingredients. Roll level tablespoons of mixture into balls; place about 5cm (2 inches) apart on trays, flatten slightly. Bake about 20 minutes; cool on trays. Anzac Biscuit recipe from The Australian Women’s Weekly cookbook: World Table, published by ACP Books.

Forces War Records recommends:
Try adding any of these ingredients:
Dried fruit
Chocolate chips
Glace cherries
Crystalised ginger
Flaked almonds
A handful of mixed seeds

Forces War Records

  • Specialist genealogy website, with over 300 years of military records
  • Over 9 million individuals’ records available to search, 1.5 million not found anywhere else online!
  • Accurate records professionally transcribed in-house
  • Extensive Historic Document Archive
  • Military experts in-house to answer customer queries
  • FREE monthly Magazine to help with research.

Read more about Anzac Day… https://au.forces-war-records.com/

One Comment

Getting a Slouch Hat to stay in the right position takes about a day and a half, using water and a mold. Great article. The Australian Light Horse wore emu feathers in their Slouch Hats. Australian 4th Light Horse Brigade mounted the last successful cavalry charge in history on 31st October 1917 at the Battle of Beersheba during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of WWI. This is significant because this led to an agreement from the British agreeing to allow the formation of Israel.

It should also be noted that Turkey had twice as many casualties as the Anzacs at Gallipoli.

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