Tuesday, 4 August 2015

4th August 1915

The photograph of the 7th Battery's No. 2 Gun in action, mentioned by Billy below,
as published on the front page of the British newspaper The Daily Mirror on the 12th
July 1915 - in comparison to many of the photos of Billy prior to enlistment, the
artilleryman sitting at front in the slouch hat is almost certainly Billy.  Given the
position of Major Hughes (to left) looking over the parapet in front of the periscope,
[Author's own Collection]

Wednesday August 4

My 21st Birthday, and a German plane came over and dropped several bombs at us but did little damage.  I got my rifle and put 20 rounds at him.  There were 8,000 troops landed last night. The enemy were bombarding the beach at midnight with heavy guns. There was a demonstration last night by our chaps in front.  Incessant rifle fire and bombs being thrown.  The Turks tried to blow up our saps last night but did not succeed.  I tried to make a cake last night but as I only  had  a shovel to cook it on, it got slightly blackened and burnt.  Br McKinnon made a Pudding today and it went well with condensed milk.  A shell struck our observation pit and knocked the dirt all over us, the Turks were bombarding us this evening with big guns.  Our howitzers, 18 pdrs and the monitor gave them a towling up at Olive Grove where the enemys batteries are situated.  Saw a copy of the Daily Mirror which had our gun and  detachments photo in it.  This was taken by Capt Crowper first week in action.  Capt C. has been killed since a C. Helles.

Wednesday 4th August

I do not know whether it was the effect of the pancakes I ate last night or the want of something substantial that made me enter the land of dreams. I was amidst the smell of the East and the noises and the domes of its mosques – the hot sun the rabble in its streets. I dreamt of Port Said and the waterway of the Canal and the song of the Arabs coaling the ship was in my ears and so loud that I could see them as they went at night time up and down the planks between the barges and the ship’s deck an endless chain of naked figures monotonously chanting. It was a rude awakening when a large shell from the enemy’s gun went overhead and exploded near us. A large number of troops landed last evening mostly South Wales Borderers.

(Captain William Charles Waite, temporary O/C 7th Battery)

2 rounds were fired from No 1 Gun at Snipers in TWIN TRENCHES that were giving trouble on the beach.

Wednesday 4th August 

No attempt at Counter attack by enemy during night of 3rd-4th August. General bombardment of enemy’s position on Johnstones Jolly and Lone Pine carried out at intervals during day. During arrival of troops last night Olive Grove commenced a brisk shelling of Anzac Cove, but 9th Battery and 5th How Battery kept on to them all night and effectually kept their fire under.

Underwent secondary inoculation against Cholera. General Hobbs at my Headquarters during afternoon. Very dissatisfied with condition of gun emplacement 5th How Battery. Divisional Orders (Secret) issued giving details of attack on August 6th. Hostile aeroplane again overhead. Engaged by 9th Battery. General Hobbs offered appointment as Orderly Officer to Gen Cunliffe Owen to Lt Garling, Lieut Glendinning and Lieut Pybus. All expressed their desire to remain with guns. Gen Hobbs had to detail Lt Pybus temporarily to the position. Enemy’s artillery quiet.

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