Tuesday 22nd December,
We broke camp at 10 a.m. and marched to the Broadmeadows Station where
entrained for Port Melbourne and boarded the S.S. Berrima which is to
take us to
our destination which is unknown to us at present. We left the wharf at
5 p.m. and
steamed till 6.30 p.m. when we dropped anchor off Sandringham where we
remained for the night.
Wednesday 23rd December, 1914
We raised anchor and steamed away at 5 a.m., reaching the heads about
after passing which we dropped the Pilot and took in tow the Australian
AE2, continuing our journey in pleasant weather with no further events
of note for
Thursday 24th December, 1914
I forgot to state at first that the bugle sounded lights out at 9 p.m.
when every man is
supposed to be in his hammock. I woke on this morning after a lovely night's
at about 6 a.m. and on getting on deck found we had lost some time through
hawser which connected the submarine to our boat parting at 4 a.m.. This
been fixed up and we were off again but at 9.30 a.m. the same thing happened
again and we had to heave to for a couple of hours while it was fixed
up again. I
started this morning to give a hand in the hospital at meal times. The
splendid and we have at present 6 cases, all minor. The food has been
far and this afternoon I was told to have my meals and to sleep in the
with the rest of the tent division, up to now we had been sleeping below
other men. We had a concert in the evening and there were some very good
Friday 25th December, 1914
Xmas day on the water with a church service at 10 a.m. which I could not
attend as I
was on duty in the hospital. We are somewhere in the Australian Bight.
I had a
splendid dinner pork and plum pudding being the chief items. The afternoon
evening passed away quietly with nothing else worthy of note.
Saturday 26th December, 1914
Boxing Day, we sighted a steamer which we think is the Ulysses, it has
been in sight
all day. I have been assisting all day while Captain Dawson has been vaccinating
Sunday 27th December, 1914
Sunday very quiet, everyone busy writing in case we touch Albany tomorrow.
Monday 28th December, 1914
Anchored outside Albany this morning about 6 a.m.. Moved to within half
wharf about 10 a.m. No chance of getting on shore. We finished the vaccin.
morning. A lot of the boys have been fishing over the side and have caught
a lot of
Mackerel, I had no line. We had a Patriotic Concert tonight.
Tuesday 29th December, 1914
Still at Albany, nothing doing. Steamer Port Macquarie at wharf on fire
Wednesday 30th December, 1914
Still at Albany, everything quiet. Wish we would get a move on.
Thursday 31st December, 1914
Left Albany 9 a.m., very quietly. It seems to be a quiet place. Still
AE2 in tow.
Friday 1st January,
New Years Day. We have a general holiday and have a sports meeting in
afternoon. I am now doing duty at the dispensary, giving any assistance
I can at the
sick parades which are held at 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. and any bandaging that
to be done. The sports were fairly successful considering the circumstances
which they were held, we have about 1200 men on board. I did not enter
anything. There are 17 vessels in our fleet and they are steaming 4 abreast
our steamer the Berrima leading by about half mile, they look very impressive.
were stopped for about a quarter of an hour about 12 noon and were told
it was because there had been a burial on the S.S. Themistocles. The day
a close with a beautiful night.
Saturday 2nd January, 1915
Awoke this morning about 5.45 a.m., a splendid morning. We had 98 men
parade this morning, none serious, mostly colds and effects of vaccination.
submarine AE2 cast off this morning and went scouting round on her own,
know what is the reason. I hear 2 of the transports have broken down,
have dropped right back. We finished the sports this afternoon, the A.M.C.
relay race and reached the semi final of the tug of war but were beaten
Railways. We had a lecture at 4 p.m. from Capt Dawson on rolled bandaging
also a little practice, it is very interesting. This was the tent division
of A Section
only. Am just going to have a smoke and then turn in, weather still lovely
Sunday 3rd January, 1915
Jumped out of my hammock at 6 a.m. and got cleaned and dressed in my uniform
as it is Sunday, feel quite smart again after wearing my blues, did not
get to church
parade as I was busy getting ready to dress vaccinations when church parade
over. I joined in some of the hymns while I was working and could see
everything through the porthole in the dispensary. We had 98 men on sick
at 7 a.m. and after church parade were very busy dressing arms (Vacc)
time. I lay down on one of the beds in the dispensary after dinner as
nothing doing. We had news that Major Stewart of C Sec. 4th Field Amb.,
who is on
the S.S. Agana, has contracted Typhoid, don't know if it is serious or
not. We hove
to at 4 p.m. to take in tow again our baby Submarine AE2.
Monday 4th January, 1915
Donned the blues again this morning and went on duty at dispensary for
at 7 a.m. We had over 100 on parade but none serious, most of them had
practically nothing wrong with them, they seem to walk up if their fingers
About 10 a.m. the Chief Engineer showed me how to work the ships sterilizer
then I started to work to sterilize some blankets and hammocks which had
used by men with an infectious or contagious disease, was busy at this
till about 4
p.m. except for my dinner time. I then went and laid down till the sick
parade at 5
p.m. at which I was on duty again. After this I had a good tea and then
to read some yarns in a magazine. Had a good salt water bath at 8 p.m.
as it is
beginning to warm up, we are entering the tropics now, am just going to
Tuesday 5th January, 1915
It was pretty warm today, but I suppose we must expect it now. I did some
sterilizing today, it kept me going till 2 p.m. then I had a lie down
for an hour in the
dispensary, at 4 p.m. our section was paid. This is our first pay on board.
only paid 1/- per day while on board and the balance is paid to us when
our destination. I received 14/-. Went on duty at sick parade at 5 p.m.,
doing, plenty of patients with very little the matter with them. Had word
Agana about 9 p.m. that Major Stewart was nearly dead, also they asked
us if we
had a female nurse on board who could be transferred to them to look after
Wednesday 6th January, 1915
Up early again this morning, it is beautiful weather if it was not so
hot. We hove to
about 10 a.m. and lowered a boat and our Colonel, his orderly and Sergt
who is an old R.A.M.C. nurse, were transferred to the Agana to look after
Stewart. It took our boat about 2 hours to get to the Agana and back as
about half a mile apart and although the sea is not rough to us on our
bounced the boat with the Colonel in about a good deal, in fact sometimes
not see it at all. After dinner I was vaccinated along with the rest of
the tent division
and so I spent the rest of the day except for sick parade at 5 p.m. in
It is getting hotter.
Thursday 7th January, 1915
I awoke this morning about 4 a.m. and noticed that the ship had stopped.
got on deck I saw the Sub AE2 had cast off and was going right away from
on inquiry I heard that a steamer had been sighted and would not answer
signals, it was rumoured to be a warship, but turned out to be a tramp
some misunderstanding had arisen out of the signalling. The AE2 came back
visiting the steamer which was about 10 miles away, and was taken in tow
us. It only took the AE2 3 minutes to be absolutely ready for action after
had been given. I was given the duties today of looking after the venereal
all the cases are Gonorrhoea. I have to give the patients their medicine
they keep themselves clean. 35 of them.
Friday 8th January, 1915
I awoke this morning and prepared for my duties in connection with the
patients. They are all isolated and of course I take every precaution
for myself. I
visit them at 9 a.m. and 7 p.m., it takes me about an hour each visit.
I give each
man his medicine to take and mix up their solutions for bathing and syringing
purposes. I do not think there is much danger of catching anything as
ordinary precautions are taken. I have not given up assisting at the dispensary
the sick parades as (Although I could do so if I wished to) I am learning
a good deal
and thoroughly like the work. I saw Captain Dawson inject into a patient
Diphtheria serum this afternoon. He took this precaution as the patient
sign of having Diphtheria. He injected about 10,000 minims. It has been
and still is
sweltering hot. It is now 8 p.m.
Saturday 9th January, 1915
After I had done the rounds of my patients this morning I was told off
to assist Capt.
Jeffries, who along with Capt Dawson started to inoculate the troops at
10 a.m. We
got through about 600 men up to 12 o'clock noon when we knocked off for
We did not do any more after dinner as there was a boxing tournament on
everyone wanted to see it. Capt Dawson was timekeeper. There were some
good bouts and if it had not been for the intense heat would have been
enjoyable show. I was on the sick parade at 5 p.m. but there was nothing
consequence occurred. Lime juice was given out today, 1 bottle to about
Sunday 10th January,
Did not put my uniform on today as it was too hot and my duties won't
allow me to
go to church parade. It happens at a busy time for me. We are supposed
the equator today. Capt Jeffries performed an operation today which I
Haemorrhoids or bleeding piles. He operated and took them away very
successfully. It was very interesting to watch and of course seeing it
much more experience. I am getting on well at the dispensary too, all
the little odd
jobs being of great benefit to me. I had a sleep this afternoon as I have
had a slight
headache all day and have also been quiet tonight. It is just boiling
and everyone is
Monday 11th January, 1915
I visited my patients this morning first thing after breakfast and then
went in to assist
Capt Jeffries to do some more inoculating till 12 noon. I was inoculated
Capt Dawson on the left breast and it is a little sore and stiff tonight
but it is a very
simple operation. The crew rigged up a large canvas bath and we had Father
Neptune this afternoon. All those who had never crossed the line before
supposed to go through it, the officers first and no exceptions were made.
Lieutenant refused so they sent a party and carried him from his cabin
Tuesday 12th January, 1915
Went the rounds of my patients this morning and then started to do some
sterilizing. Capt's Dawson and Jeffries were inoculating again this morning
was too busy to assist. I can hardly feel anything of my inoculation today,
to have gone. We had the final bouts of the boxing tournament this afternoon
after tea I visited my patients again. We expect to be in Colombo early
morning so everyone is writing tonight myself included. The heat has not
Wednesday 13th January, 1915
Anchored inside the breakwater at Colombo about 9 a.m. this morning and
immediately besieged by numbers of small boat loads of natives who wanted
change money with us of course, all to their advantage. Later in the day
the natives got on board and we had some fun, we got the boxing gloves
out and put
a few coppers in for two of them to fight. It was funny , they have absolutely
how to fight with fists. We were not allowed to go ashore which was a
disappointment but a lot slid down ropes over the side of the steamer
and got the
natives to row them ashore.
Thursday 14th January, 1915
We were still in Colombo when I got up this morning. It is a beautiful
day and the
native boats are all around us, a lot of our men have come back who got
night and I believe there were nearly 200 off our boat alone. They have
parade as defaulters but I don't think they will get it very hot. Any
have been dodging off all morning, I was very unlucky not to be able to
with a pass, but I was disappointed. One or two fellows fell into the
getting down ropes, but they all got out. We moved out of the harbour
about 3 p.m.
this afternoon and are now anchored about a mile out.
Friday 15th January, 1915
Still at anchor when I got up this morning, a lot of native boats were
round us and
the natives were diving for money thrown into the water. Some of their
very crude being merely three planks lashed together and they kneel on
paddle with pieces of board. They never seem to miss any of the money
We raised anchor and steamed away about 10 a.m. and are now bound for
know where. I have not seen anything of an escort except for the submarine
hear there are 4 or 5 Japanese destroyers and cruisers somewhere about.
We did a
little more inoculation this morning. Everything is pretty quiet tonight.
Saturday 16th January, 1915
Did the sick parade and the round of my patients this morning and at 11
Jeffries performed an operation, it was a circumcision and went off quite
are somewhere close to the coast of India and by the chart seem to be
but of course we don't know. We have seen the smoke of several vessels
the day but don't know what they were, might be our escort. We also saw
thought was the coast of India but were not sure. The men who broke ship
Colombo have been fined 10 days ships pay (10/-) and 1 days field pay
means 5/- and 6/- in some cases, this is privates. N.C.O.'s are to be
martialled. It is very hot.
Sunday 17th January, 1915
This is our fourth Sunday on the water, everything seems very quiet. I
patients this morning and again this evening and during the day did a
It was busy in the dispensary while the church parade was on, but as it
is held just
outside the door, I can see and hear everything. The singing of all the
sounds fine when you are on the sea and the men seem as though they are
vent to their feelings when they are singing. We had a church service
which I attended and enjoyed very much and I was almost sorry when it
Monday 18th January, 1915
We are still having lovely weather it seems nothing short of marvellous
for the water
to be so still. I did my rounds this morning and then helped Capt Jeffries
some of the troops for the second time, everyone has to be done twice
days otherwise the inoculation against Typhoid will not have the desired
were at it till midday when we knocked off for dinner and resumed again
at 2.30 p.m.
keeping going till 5 p.m., when I had to go and attend the sick parade
Dawson before having tea. I fixed my patients up after tea and then had
games at Draughts and turned in.
Tuesday 19th January, 1915
Attended sick parade at 7 a.m. then had breakfast after which I visited
I then had to assist Capt Jeffries to do some more inoculating. We were
at it till
dinner time and I was inoculated myself for the second time. I took things
afternoon till 5 o'clock sick parade when Capt Dawson took our photo's
dispensary and also outside with the men who were reporting sick. I was
too good myself about this time from the effects of my inoculation but
it seems to
have worn off again this evening and I feel alright now. It is four weeks
we left Melbourne.
Wednesday 20th January, 1915
Attended sick parade at 7 a.m. and afterwards visited my patients and
then we did a
little more inoculating which lasted till close on dinner time. I have
not felt any
effects of my inoculation this morning or at all today and all that can
be seen is a
little swelling on the left breast where the needle was inserted. We are
we have done all the trip except when we have stopped to provision the
about a mile ahead of the other transports, sometimes we go ahead and
of them altogether. Rumours are afloat on the ship that our section is
England to train in the hospitals at home.
Thursday 21st January,
Went into the dispensary at 7 a.m. for sick parade and just as we finished
was brought in who had a bayonet accidentally stuck in him, it was not
Attended to my patients after breakfast and then Capt Jeffries performed
operations very successfully. One was for Haemorrhoids and the other a
circumcision. This kept us going till dinner. We all had to turn out on
parade in full marching order, when we were inspected by Major Baker,
the O.C. of
the ship. This is the first parade I have been on since embarking and
it lasted till
tea time. We sighted 2 steamers today which looked like cruisers through
glasses, they were painted the same colour, they turned out to be transports
Indian troops on board and are still with us tonight.
Friday 22nd January, 1915
Attended sick parade at 7 a.m. and after breakfast visited my patients.
instructions from Capt Dawson today to take them their medicine 3 times
which means I must visit them at 2 p.m. as well as 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. but
it is not
much trouble. Things were very quiet this afternoon so I lay down and
had a read till
5 p.m. sick parade after which I had my tea and then did my 7 o'clock
expect to reach Aden tomorrow and everyone is hoping for a chance to get
but I don't think it is any good hoping, they made a bad thing of it when
ship at Colombo.
Saturday 23rd January, 1915
I forgot to mention yesterday the result of the Court Martial of the N.C.O.'s
broke ship at Colombo was announced. They were all reduced to privates
have to do 14 days fatigue duty as defaulters and I understand they have
as well. The result was announced publicly and their stripes were cut
off in front of
all the troops on the ship. We reached Aden this morning and anchored
harbour. The men did a little bargaining with the natives and I bought
2 singlets for
2/-, they are only cotton but very easy for the hot weather. We were to
steamed out this evening but unfortunately our anchor fouled a submarine
broke it and then the steel hawser which we tow AE2 with got tangled round
our propellers and we will have to stay till it is fixed up.
Sunday 24th January, 1915
The rest of the fleet steamed away without us yesterday evening and we
the divers working on our propeller all night and they are still at it.
We moved into
the inner harbour about 9 a.m. to give the divers a better chance and
found 2 Indian
transports at anchor, one of them has 8 guns mounted which we can see
some quick firers or Maxims. We have been besieged with natives trying
to sell fruit
and other things all day. I wrote 6 post cards and 1 letter this afternoon.
the fellows are fishing but only catching very small fish. We left Aden
at 5 p.m. and
passed a mail steamer about 7.30 on her way to Australia.
Monday 25th January, 1915
Visited my patients this morning and after breakfast we did some more
dinner time, we passed a cargo steamer about 11.30 a.m. Capt Dawson took
another photo this afternoon of 6 of us in front of the dispensary. After
tea I visited
my patients and then went to have a quiet time in the dispensary. I hardly
settled when 6 men were brought in with severe pains in their stomachs.
the start and I sent for Capt Dawson. We worked till 11.30 p.m. about
6 of us and
we had to use the stomach pump on about 20 men, it appeared that they
Ptomaine poisoning but we could not get to the cause of it. I turned in
about 12 p.m.
sleeping in the dispensary with 30 others, but odd ones kept coming in
the night. They were all sent to hospital and from 7.30 to 6 a.m. Tuesday
went through 102 troops suffering.
Tuesday 26th January, 1915
After a broken nights sleep I got up at reveille 6 a.m. feeling pretty
tired. We went
through the sick parade at 7 a.m. and we had a very large number of the
were suffering slightly from Ptomaine poisoning not so bad as the night
tried to find the cause of the poisoning through the day but could not.
A good many
of the men were feeling very seedy, but I was quite well and must have
fortunate enough to leave the cause of the poisoning alone, although I
did not know
it. We got wireless news of Admiral Beatty's victory over the Germans
and of his
sinking the Blucher, also that the Turks were sniping along the Suez Canal.
Wednesday 27th January, 1915
Usual sick parade and round of patients this morning. Then I went on to
deck with Capt Dawson to assist him as we had a medical inspection for
troops on board. This kept us going till midday. After dinner we had a
inspection of all troops on board in full marching order and with entire
kits as for
disembarkation, by the O.C. of units, Capt Dawson being our O.C., as the
is on board the Ulysses. We passed 5 boats during the day and expect to
Suez tomorrow. We had some news that the British forces were driving back
Thursday 28th January, 1915
Did my rounds again this morning and then we did some packing of medical
in the dispensary. We were at this till dinner time. We passed a small
yacht about 8.30 a.m. quite close, it was flying the Egyptian flag. We
saw land all
day today and about 4 p.m. sighted the rest of our fleet at anchor at
the mouth of the
Suez Canal. We were packing all afternoon in case we have to disembark
We anchored alongside the rest of the transports about 6 p.m. at the mouth
Suez Canal. Just as we anchored a small gunboat passed us, it was about
as the Edina and had 2 guns.
Friday 29th January, 1915
Port Suez looked lovely this morning from the deck of our steamer. It
is the prettiest
scene I have seen since leaving Melb. We got a move on about 11 a.m. and
entered the canal, it is a wonderful piece of work. We passed a cruiser
just inside the canal, they gave us a rousing cheer and early this afternoon
passed the cruiser Minerva and the Indian transport Himalaya which has
a lot of
guns on and has been turned into an auxiliary cruiser. They were all 3
the bank of the canal ready to defend it against the Turks. All along
the banks of
the canal are soldiers entrenched ready to defend it, most of them are
far as we have seen today they are very lively and cheered for all they
were worth as
we passed. They seem to be in a very strong position.
Saturday 30th January, 1915
We anchored last night in one of the lakes in the canal called the Bitter
Lake and we
got under way again about 10 a.m. this morning. We passed lots of troops
entrenched on the banks, most of the way up the country is just sand.
the Orsova on her way to Australia and also an Indian transport full of
taking them up the canal to where the fighting is expected to be more
anchored in another lake about 2.30 p.m. and a small launch came off from
where there is a small town called Ishmaeli, towing a pontoon on which
Australian Engineers. As they came closer I picked out a couple of them,
my fiancee's brother and A Milne. I was agreeably surprised to see them,
them tobacco and cigarettes and tucker, they came quite close and we learned
Turks were not far away and already there had been a slight engagement.
Sunday 31st January, 1915
We hoisted our anchor about 10 a.m. this morning and moved away from Ishmael.
We saw troops all along the banks of the canal ready entrenched, waiting
Turks. Our men looked well prepared for any attack that might come. We
saw 5 or 6 aeroplanes flying over Ishmaeli keeping an eye open for the
passed some more British and French warships one of ours being the Swiftsure.
We also passed an Italian cruiser the Calabria, she saluted us and all
her men stood
at attention as we passed. Then we passed a French passenger steamer and
passengers were very enthusiastic. We had to tie up for about an hour
and a half
to let about a dozen ships pass us. We then got a move on and reached
about 7 p.m. this evening.