Anzac Day

Today marks 100 years since the allied landings in Gallipoli. Since 1920 the 25th April has been Anzac Day in Australia and New Zealand; a day to remember the sacrifices of service personnel in both nations in The Great War and wars since. The Gallipoli campaign, perhaps more than any other campaign in WW1, helped define the new Australian nation and its independence from the old world. In total General Bridwood, commander of the ANZAC Corps, had 30,638 men when they landed at ANZAC bay and after a brief assault the allied forces hit strong resistance and the campaign descended into a precarious stalemate. By the time allied forces withdrew 56,707 men had been killed, including 8,709 Australians and 2,721 New Zealanders.Call_from_The_Dardenelles_Australian_World_War_One_Enlistment_Poster_WWI_ITonight’s object is a small collar badge from an Australian Uniform:imageThis little badge, repeated as a larger cap badge, consists of a King’s crown with a scroll below reading ‘Australian Commonwealth Military Forces’ and backed by a semicircle of bayonet blades. The badge is commonly known as the ‘Rising Sun’; apparently the nickname was coined before World War One by soldiers in Melbourne whose barracks were near to the Hoadley’s Jam Factory. The factory produced a brand of jam, supplied to the Australian Army, called ‘Rising Sun’ with a similar logo to the badge. Variations on this design of badge have been used by Australia up to the present day, the design having a particularly emotional attachment to all who have served in Australia’s armed forces.

Robert Fleming described the Australian experience of WW1 as defining the Australian character ever since:

The AIF ‘Digger’ came to define what it meant to be an Australian: egalitarian, meritocratic, hard-working, leisure-loving, giving others a ‘fair go’, and – above all else- never letting his mates down.”

Needless to say Anzac Day commemorations this year will have an added poignancy to them; regardless of whether you are an Australian or New Zealander please take a moment to remember as well.616px-Periscope_rifle_Gallipoli_1915

3 thoughts on “Anzac Day

  1. Matt

    Ahoy lads:
    Here across the pond we’ve grown poor at remembering our history.
    But, I wanted to say I do remember the ANZAC, and they are quite dear in my heart.
    For others “in the dark”, three movies worth a look are:
    “Golipoli” .
    “Lighthorsemen”,also ANZAC, though Palestine/Beersheba
    Also, there was a great three-four night mini series back in the 80’s released here,(US) as “ANZACs” It is a bit “canned”, but it was decently done and did have a WWI MK IV tank!
    Best to you all, chums
    Matt, Texas

    Reply
  2. Debbie

    Hello, I live in a country town called gidgegannup in Western Australia and go for a walk with my animals every day and came across this badge in the dirt. I wanted to know what the history was and was wondering what year it was made? And how would you know if it is an original? Not looking to sell it, just think it’s a special piece and would love to find out more. Cheers Deb

    Reply

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