- Written by Kathleen Winger
Dedication of 50th Battalion Memorial
This event will be of interest to anyone whose family members served in World War 1 in South Australia’s 10th and 50th Battalions.
(Details from The Signal, July 2013 page 27 State Branch)
Note: The Pathway of Honour: runs between King William St and Kintore Ave
behind Government House, and is at the south side of the Torrens Parade Ground.
50th Battalion Background
The 50th Battalion was created in World War 1 from South Australia’s 10th Battalion in 1916. South Australia’s 10th Battalion was then divided in two; reinforcements were added to both groups to bring each back up to strength. (Some men of the 10th and 50th also came from WA and from Broken Hill)
That is why the 10th and the 50th are called “sister battalions”. They even have the same colours and for many years held remembrances and reunions together.
Their close ties exist because the 10th battalion lost half its fighting men to help create the 50th. The soldiers who made up the initial ‘heart’ of the 50th were in fact the 10th’s Gallipoli veterans.
Soldiers who had fought together at Gallipoli had to reluctantly farewell some of their closest comrades, but the split was done rather have newly arriving men start a new battalion made up of only raw and inexperienced recruits.
The 50th Battalion only existed in World War 1, but fought with distinction and continues to be honoured by today’s 10th Battalion. The 50th Battalion’s mightiest (and costliest) engagement was at Villers Bretonneux (France) on Anzac Day 1918, turning the tide of the war at a town that has never forgotten the courage of our Australians.
Many of our RSL members had family members who served in the 10th and 50th Battalions in World War 1. Attending this dedication would be a fine tribute to the sacrifices made by our soldiers of Gallipoli and France during World War 1.
Members of the 50th Battalion in an old trench behind a wrecked German pillbox near Zonnebeke, in the Ypres Salient. Identified: 612 Private (Pte) A A Young (1); unidentified (2); 3154 Pte O M Eatts (3); 2482 Sergeant (Sgt) F T Slade (4); 3306 Pte C Farrel (5); unidentified (6); unidentified (7); unidentified (8); 2260 Pte G Stanford (9); 6340 Pte A C Nausen (10); 3035 Pte E Hanna (11); 2052 Pte Hienceslater (12); unidentified (13); unidentified (13A); unidentified (14); unidentified (15); unidentified (16); unidentified (17); 3236 Lance Corporal (LCpl) Bartsch (18); 1949 Pte H T Martin (19); unidentified (20); unidentified (21); 273 LCpl G Carmichael (22); Corporal (Cpl) A M C Clark, 13th Battalion, Army Medical Corps (23); unidentified (24); 1703 Cpl A G Lehman (25); 2523 Sgt C Bruce (26); 6028 Cpl South (27). See E00761K for position of those named in this caption.
Group portrait of the officers of the 50th Battalion. Left to right, back row: Lieutenant (Lt) William Leslie Scarborough; Lt Alexander Mills, DCM; Lt Frederick Balfour McBryde; Lt Matthew Mackay McGregor (died of wounds 3 May 1918 in France); Lt Frederick William Wakelin, Croix de Guerre; Lt John David Lockley Craven; Lt William Vernon West; Lt Ralph Elsmere Claridge; Lt Frederick Taylor Goodes; Lt William Rignold Wills. Middle row: Lt John Leslie Waldron, MM; Lt Walter James Hale; Lt Gordon Stanley Irwin Queale; Lt Charles Angas Willcox; Lt John Hunt; Lt Leslie Elliott Harding, MC; Lt Cleveland George Edwards; Lt James Norman Loudon, MC and bar; Lt Joseph Waine, MC; Lt William Stewart McKay (killed in action 24 April 1918 in France); Lt John Holroyd Hill, MC; Lt Percy Edward Nuttall, MC. Front row: Temporary Captain (Capt) Raymond George Goodman; Capt William Russell De La Poer Beresford, MC; Capt Frank Herbert Hancock (killed in action 24 April 1918 in France); Major William Murray Fowler, MC; Lieutenant Colonel Alfred George Salisbury, CMG, DSO and bar, Croix de Chevalier; Lt Lancelot Beck Smith, MC; Capt Randall Lance Rhodes, MC; Lt Henry Kay (killed in action 24 April 1918 in France); and Lt Herbert William Carlton, MC and bar.
Port Adelaide Local Hero's 50th Battalion
Joergen Christian Jensen VC
- Private Joergen Christian Jensen VC
- Date of birth: 15 January 1891
- Place of birth: Loegstoer, Denmark
- Date of death: 31 May 1922
- Place of death: Adelaide Hospital, SA
- Source: AWM145 Roll of Honour cards, 1914-1918 War, Army
Joergen (Jorgan) Jensen was born in Denmark. He came to Australia as a young man and was naturalised in 1914. He enlisted in the 10th Battalion and was sent to Gallipoli in September 1915. Following the evacuation he transferred to the 50th Battalion.
In Noreuil, France, when an Australian advance was checked by a manned enemy barricade, Jensen threw in a bomb and rushed the post. He then threatened the occupants with two more bombs, having extracted the pin of one of them with his teeth, and forced their surrender. A prisoner was sent to a neighbouring enemy party to demand their surrender, but they were fired on by the Australians. Jensen stood up, ignoring the danger, and waved his helmet until the firing ceased. He was awarded the Victoria Cross for his efforts, 2 April 1917.
On 5 May 1918, while on patrol near Villers-Bretonneux, Jensen was severely wounded and was eventually invalided to Australia. Still troubled by war injuries, he died in Adelaide in 1922.
Peter Herbert Gascoigne
- Peter Herbert Gascoigne
- Service number: 1682
- Rank: Private
- Unit: 50th Battalion (Infantry)
- Service: Australian Army
- Conflict: 1914-1918
- Date of death: 2 April 1917
- Place of death: France
- Cause of death: Killed in action
- Cemetery or memorial details: Noreuil Australian Cemetery, France
- Source: AWM145 Roll of Honour cards, 1914-1918 War, Army
Portrait of 1682 Private (Pte) Peter Herbert Gascoigne, 50th Battalion. A labourer from Port Adelaide, South Australia, prior to enlistment, he embarked with the 2nd Reinforcements from Adelaide on 11 April 1916 aboard HMAT Aeneas for England. After a period of training in England he joined his unit on the Western Front near Abbeville, France. Pte Gascoigne was initially reported missing in action near Noreuil, France, on 2 April 1917, was subsequently confirmed as being killed in action on that date and is buried in the Noreuil Australian Cemetery. He was aged 24 years.
Bertie Chloride Dawe
- Bertie Chloride Dawe
- Service number: 2164
- Rank: Lance Corporal
- Unit: 50th Battalion
- Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918
Portrait of 2164 Private (Pte) Bertie Chloride Dawe, 50th Battalion. A labourer from Port Adelaide, South Australia, prior to enlistment, he embarked from Adelaide on 12 August 1916 aboard HMAT Ballarat for Devonport, England. Following training at Codford he proceeded to join his battalion on the Western Front near Vignacourt. He was wounded in action near Messines on 7 June 1917 and rejoined his unit nine days later. Pte Dawe was appointed Lance Corporal (L Cpl) on 17 January 1918. He was wounded in action on a second occasion due to a gas attack near Amiens in May 1918. L Cpl Dawe was killed in action near Bray-sur-Somme on 11 August 1918. He has no known grave and he is commemorated on the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial, France. He was aged 30 years