May 1915

Saturday 1st May, 1915

Was awakened by heavy shell fire about 4.15 a.m. The Turks were putting shrapnel
over us, most of it going in the sea, one spent bullet dropped on the fellow lying
alongside me, but did no harm. Had to go on at our dressing station at 5.15 a.m., 17
wounded men had come in during night, none serious. Sent them all to clearing
hospital at 10 a.m. Was assisting at dressing station on beach for a couple of hours
before I had dinner. Not many casualties this morning such as were, were mostly
serious. Several died, two were shot while working on beach. Shot and shell being
over and all round us all day. Barricaded our dugouts against shell splinters. Heard
that C. Howlett had been wounded.

Sunday 2nd May, 1915

Pretty quiet all night, only a few shells from the enemy and not so much rifle fire, our
boys have driven them back. Up at 6 a.m. Have been at fatigue work all day, pick
and shovel work. Eleven Turks were captured not far from our dug out this morning.
Have got about 18 patients in our hospital, most of them pure exhaustion, 3 or 4
slightly wounded. Some of our troops have been horribly mutilated by shrapnel.
Three more of our corps have been wounded today. Am in fine health myself.
Reinforcements arrived last night. Heard rumour that "Goeben" had been sunk by
submarine AE2. At 8 p.m. four of us volunteered to go to trenches and help
stretcher bearers, was out till 2 a.m., brought one of our own corps in shot through
arm and chest. Was a perfect hell. Bearer work most dangerous of all. Everyone
praising bearers for brave work.

Monday 3rd May, 1915

Got in 2 a.m. this morning from doing bearer work, wonder we have any bearers left,
have to go through and carry patients through a valley and along a creek bed where
bullets are falling like rain and where the enemies snipers are concealed. One of
our bearers was shot dead during night. About 7 a.m. shrapnel fell all round our
dugout and 2 fellows sleeping next to me were both hit on the feet with shrapnel
bullets, fortunately spent, only bruised. At 9 a.m. went on hospital, lot patients,
mostly dysentry and exhaustion. Was busy till 5 p.m. Shrapnel fell all round our
camp during afternoon, 12 men were wounded round us and 1 killed. Our troops
took a hill early this morning but lost a terrible lot of men, they are having a hard and
nerve-racking time. Things pretty quiet tonight. Feel fine myself.

Tuesday 4th May, 1915

Up at 6 a.m. Cooked bacon and fried biscuits for breakfast. After breakfast went
down to the dressing station on beach but practically no wounded were coming in so
tried to find some pals in other regiments but could get no news of them. Nothing
doing after dinner so had a sleep till 5 p.m. Had tea and went out for a look round.
The British marines on our left flank were busily trenching and barricading in
expectation of a night attack by the Turks. It was a very poor attack and was easily
beaten off. Had it been much another fellow and myself had arranged to go and
help repel it. Paid visit to battery of New Zealand artillery, the crew of which we have
made friends with but nothing was doing. Three more of our corps were badly

Wednesday 5th May, 1915

Got up at 7 a.m. had breakfast, our day for fatigue duty. Were shifted out of our
dugout and had to dig another further up the gully. Firing not so severe again today,
enemy seem quietened. Had an issue of cigarettes and tobacco. Two more of our
corps were severely wounded today, also Captain Jeffries of B. Section. More
reinforcements arrived today for some of the Australian battalions. Not so many
wounded brought in today. Our boys are doing splendid but are having to fight
fiercely. It seems awful when one walks along the beach and sees the number of
graves of our boys and one is thankful to be alive. The Australian 2nd Brigade and
about 5000 New Zealanders were taken in boats tonight and I believe are going to
land about 4 miles further along the coast.

Thursday 6th May, 1915

Up at 6 a.m. had breakfast then as nothing was doing with us took a walk along the
beach. Saw a Turkish major come in on horseback and surrender. While on beach
Turks opened enfilading fire with shrapnel on it. The shells passed over me and
about 17 mules and a dozen men were wounded within 100 yards of me. The mules
and men left had to clear from beach till our batteries silenced the enemies. Had a
rest this afternoon. Our troops are advancing and doing splendid. The troops taken
a few miles up the coast last night have landed and from reports are also doing well.
The Turks gave us a taste of their shrapnel in the gully where we are camped this
evening, but did no damage. On duty at hospital at 5 p.m. A very lively rifle fire is
going on tonight.

Friday 7th May, 1915

Finished at hospital at 1 a.m. and turned in about 1.30 a.m. Had about 20 patients,
slight wounds and influenza. Got up about 9 a.m. Turks shelled us pretty heavily
this morning but no one injured before dinner. After dinner they continued shelling
us, they had a good range, shells falling all round us. One shell (shrapnel) fell within
a yard of our hospital tent, luckily only one man was injured. One of our bearers was
severely wounded in both legs. Had to keep under cover till 4 p.m. when the
shelling ceased. About 4.30 p.m. went down to beach and had a swim, was wanting
a bath pretty badly, also could do with a change of underclothes. We have to wash
ourselves in sea water. All fresh water has to be bought from Malta in boats. Fairly
quiet tonight. Timeline

Saturday 8th May, 1915

Up at 6 a.m. and cooked my breakfast, a couple of rashers of ham and some
biscuits (pretty hard). After breakfast had a walk round to see if I could hear any
news. Could hear nothing except that our troops are doing well. After dinner went
down for a swim and enjoyed it thoroughly except that I had to cut it short as the
Turks started shelling the beach with shrapnel and some fell in the water. Two men
were killed on the beach and a few wounded. One of our fellows was wounded this
evening while shaving, the cap of a shell drove into his dugout and hit him on the
thigh. On at hospital at 5 p.m., have 21 patients. A lively rifle fire started about 10
p.m. and is still continuing. Timeline

Sunday 9th May, 1915

Off duty from hospital at 1 a.m. and turned in, things were quiet about this time.
Was up again at 9 a.m., a few shells passed over us this morning but fell in the sea.
The Turks shelled our camp all afternoon and we had to keep under cover. One
shell hit one of our corps killing him instantly and wounding another, this shell failed
to burst. Had it not been so tragic, an amusing incident occurred. The shell buried
itself in the earth unexploded and one of our men ran and picked it up, carrying it to
where a crowd were taking cover. They all ran away shouting for him to bury it, he
put it down at his feet and looked amazed evidently wondering where the danger lay.
It was taken to headquarters and unloaded. Three more of our corps were wounded
this evening. Timeline

Monday 10th May, 1915

Hard fighting took place during the night and our bearers were called out at 3 a.m. to
bring the wounded in. I got up at 6 a.m., things had quietened down by this time. I
believe the Turks casualties were very heavy and our own are by no means light.
Three more of our corps were wounded this morning, two of them severely and one
slightly. Not much doing today, had a swim in the sea this morning, also heard of
the sinking of the "Lusitania". Not been shelled so much today. Was on picket this
evening for about an hour, looking after some stuff on the beach, had to take cover
as some shrapnel started to burst all round us for about half an hour, our boats soon
silenced them. While an Australian was being buried this evening a shell fell right in
his grave without exploding.

Tuesday 11th May, 1915

Have had nothing at all to do today. Got up at 7 a.m. and had breakfast. Had a
walk round this morning to see what was doing. Very few casualties came in today.
After dinner the Turks shelled our camp again but did very little damage and did not
injure anyone in our camp. They also shelled the beach and four men were slightly
wounded, our batteries and fleet replied and succeeded in silencing the enemy.
Wrote a few short letters this afternoon as there is a mail leaving on Friday. Had
news of seven German destroyers being sunk in the North Sea. General Sir Ian
Hamilton's letter of congratulations to our troops was posted up today. A brisk rifle
fire is going on tonight.

Wednesday 12th May, 1915

On duty at hospital at 1 a.m. this morning, 25 patients, none serious. Came off duty
at 9 a.m. Rained hard all night, up to knees in mud and most of our boys flooded
out of their dugouts. Heaviest firing of big guns been going on all night since we
have been here. Our ships and batteries must have been creating an inferno
somewhere amongst the enemy. Turned in after 9 a.m. and had a sleep, been a
miserable day raining on and off all time and up to knees in mud. Made a shelter
out of our waterproof sheets, kept us dry. Few shrapnel fell round us at intervals.
Heard that the British troops that landed at entrance to Dardanelles are nearing us
and hemming the enemy between our forces. Timeline

Thursday 13th May, 1915

Was on picket from 12 midnight till 3 a.m. looking after medical panniers on beach.
Turned in at 3.30 a.m. and slept till 6 a.m. A few shells dropped round our camp
today, no one injured. Commenced to fix up a dressing station on beach at 10 a.m.,
had it ready for treating patients by 2.30 p.m. when I was told off to rest till 6 p.m. At
6 p.m. I went on duty at dressing station, 2 doctors (Captains) and 4 of us in
attendance, have treated 23 wounds up to 9 p.m. Heard British battleship "Goliath"
has been sunk in Dardenelles. Australian light horse arrived today to reinforce our
troops as infantry. A few spy's are being caught amongst our troops I believe. All
ships off coast have all lights out tonight, talk of two German submarines. Rifle firing
all night.

Friday 14th May, 1915

Came off duty at dressing station at 6 a.m. Treated 35 patients, all kinds of wounds,
hand grenade, shrapnel and rifle bullet. Two that were brought in proved fatal, one
shot through the brain and one through the spine. Had breakfast and turned in
about 7 a.m. Slept till 1 p.m. A battery is mounted on the right just above us and
has been troubling the enemy considerably, they tried to dislodge it this afternoon as
the gully where we are camped was full of bursting shrapnel for about three hours,
however no one was injured and our battery remains intact. Went and had a swim
about 5 p.m., we are having lovely weather. Have not heard how the boys in
trenches are getting on today. Turned in at 9 p.m., roused out 5 minutes later to go
to dressing station.

Saturday 15th May, 1915

Was at dressing station all night, nothing doing till 3 a.m. when 27 wounded were
brought in. Our boys had charged another hill during night. Redressed the wounds
and sent men on board hospital ship, all pretty bad cases, some will have to have
amputation. Were relieved at 6.30 a.m. Turned in at 7.30 a.m., could not sleep as
Turks shelled our camp consistently. One shell burst by the hospital wounding two
patients and one of our stretcher bearers. Went for swim this afternoon, had to cut it
short as shells started to fall in water. Heard this evening that Italy has joined the
Allies. Went on duty at 6 p.m.. Nothing doing till 10 p.m. when about 20 wounded
were brought in, mostly wounded by hand grenades which cause terrible wounds. Timeline

Sunday 16th May, 1915

Not much doing after rush last night till 4.30 a.m. this morning when about a dozen
more were brought in. We redress wounds and send men on hospital ship. Most of
the men take their injuries in good spirit and bear the pain wonderfully. One man
was brought in with thigh shattered by grenade, unconscious, eventually died, a
terrible wound, extracted bullet from another mans thigh, right through ½ inch from
other side, never made a sound. Turks shelling beach at 7 a.m. Turned in 8 a.m.
Went for swim 5 p.m. Turks shelled beach and our camp about 5.30 p.m. Two
shells hit a mine-sweeper but did not sink it, another shell fell about 6 yards from our
dugout blowing a stone about 30lb weight into our dugout. The stone grazed leg of
one of our boys. On duty at dressing station 7.30 p.m.

Monday 17th May, 1915

Twenty-nine wounded brought in during night. Rifle fire was going on incessantly.
Four 6 inch Howitzers were landed during night and are being put in position today,
off duty 8 a.m. Turks put about 20 shells over us about 8.30 a.m. Turned in, slept
till 2.30 p.m. A lot of Indians of the mule transport corps with their mules have
camped in the gully where we are today, they are fine chaps and make great friends,
with those who are friendly towards them. Our ships bombarded the Turks on our
left flank today. Turks replied for a short time without effect, can't touch our
Cruisers. On duty 8 p.m. Had word today two of our bearers who were wounded
had died on hospital ship. Only couple of wounded brought to us up to 12 midnight.

Tuesday 18th May, 1915

Came off duty at 8 a.m. Had about a dozen wounded during night. Turks put about
20 shells on beach about 5.30 a.m. Turned in at 9 a.m. At 5.30 a.m. Turks started
shelling the beach and the gully where our camp is, keeping the bombardment up
for about and hour and half. Pieces of shrapnel fell in our dugout and one shell just
cleared our hospital. Heaviest bombardment we have had since landing, yet very
few were injured. Noticeable that Turks are using black powder today in their shells,
what few wounded have been brought in have looked worse than really were, nearly
all had their faces burned and skin blackened by black powder in enemy's shells.
On duty 8 p.m. Very quiet up to 12 midnight.

Wednesday 19th May, 1915

Fairly quiet till 4 a.m. when Turks made charge on our trenches. Our boys inflicted
severe losses on the enemy and drove them back. About 30 wounded brought in at
4.30 a.m., kept very busy. Enemy subjected us to terrific bombardment about 4.30
a.m. Thought we were done for when large shell burst 15 yards from dressing
station. Off duty 8 a.m. Turks kept bombardment up all day, heaviest gun fire we
have been under, but we have beaten them off with heavy losses. Had a good
number of wounded in today. Two more of our chaps were wounded today by
shrapnel, while working in camps, one in same tent as myself while in Egypt, shot
through eye. He was a fine fellow. Another camp mate, Andy Khiel who has been
attached to headquarters was shot dead today. Shrapnel and rifle bullets dropped in
the dugout where I was sleeping today. On duty 7.30 p.m. tonight. Timeline

Thursday 20th May, 1915

Everything very quiet during night, only one case came in after 12 midnight.
Received mail from home this morning. Off duty at 7.30 a.m. Some Japanese
bomb throwing guns were landed this morning, they are very small but are supposed
to be very effective. The Turks kept up a desultory fire during the day from their
guns, most shells falling in sea. Turks asked for armistice this afternoon to bury
dead, were found to be massing their men and bringing up reinforcements so we
opened fire. Enemy aeroplane flew over us today, dropped a bomb, driven off by
gun fire. A number of prisoners were taken this evening, some wounded. On duty
at 7.30 p.m.

Friday 21st May, 1915

Our Squadron and Batteries bombarded enemy all night. Only about half dozen
wounded brought in, light reply from enemies guns. Off duty 7.30 a.m. A Turkish
General was brought in under a white flag of truce and caused a little excitement.
Understand he came for an interview with our Commander regarding and armistice
to bury their dead, don't know what the result was. Was returned from our lines at 8
p.m. The quietest day we have had since landing. Firing was a bit more lively
tonight between 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. Went on duty at 7.30 p.m. About a dozen
wounded brought in up to midnight. Raining tonight and sea rather rough.

Saturday 22nd May, 1915

Only a couple of wounded brought between midnight at 7.30 a.m. when I came off
duty. Raining nearly all night, was pretty uncomfortable turning in, about 9 a.m. on
sodden ground and with damp blankets. Had fairly quiet day, our troops are only
holding their position without trying to advance until the British troops (Tommies)
who landed at Sed-el-bahr get up this far. Rifle and shell fire was intermittent. Rain
ceased about 11 a.m. and it was very fine afternoon afterwards. Went on duty at
7.30 p.m. Only 3 wounded till midnight. Had to keep wounded all night, through
hospital ship moving off as enemy submarine had been sighted off the coast 4 times
during day.

Sunday 23rd May, 1915

Couple of wounded brought in after midnight last night. One died in half hour, shot
through brain. Got our patients away to hospital ship at 5 a.m. One of our
battleships, HMS "Albion" ran ashore last night. Steamed off all serene at 9 a.m.
Two of our hydroplanes were up this morning watching enemy and our ships put
some heavy shells in. Turks fired shells at our hydroplanes, but did not hit them.
Heard two enemy aeroplanes had been captured down south near Sed-el-bahr.
Very quiet this afternoon. Turks negotiating for armistice. Few more of our
reinforcements arrived today. On duty at 7.30 p.m. Recieved 3 letters from home
this evening. No wounded at all brought in during night. Timeline

Monday 24th May, 1915

Armistice to bury dead today from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., so when I came off duty at 7.30
a.m. took a walk up to trenches. Our trenches in parts are only about dozen yards
from Turk trenches and hundreds of dead were lying between, mostly by far are
Turks, they had over 3000 casualties 3 or 4 nights ago, some of dead been lying
couple of weeks. The smell was awful and after having good look round was glad to
get away. Saw plenty of Turks busily collecting their dead only a few yards away.
Turks made half hearted charge about 8.30 p.m., easily repulsed with loss. On duty
7.30 p.m. Only five wounded brought in all night. I believe all our batteries have
been shifted since 4 p.m. when the armistice ceased. Timeline

Tuesday 25th May, 1915

Off duty at 7 a.m. after a very light night. Spent this morning in making our dugout
rainproof. Shortly after 12 noon was watching our battleships and destroyers, had
only turned away about 3 minutes when my attention was directed to HMS
"Triumph" which was listing badly. An enemy submarine had torpedoed her while I
was turned away. Took from 10 to 15 minutes before she turned over and sank, our
destroyers stood all round her. Great sight but awful. A destroyer shot 6 shots at
submarine, don't know if hit her. Very few men lost. I hear there were 3
submarines. Destroyers and aeroplane searched all day, heard one sub sunk, but
not sure. HMS Triumph remained with hull visible for 3/4 of an hour before going
right under. On duty at 7.30 p.m. Things quiet tonight. Rained hard today.

Wednesday 26th May, 1915

No patients all night till 5.30 a.m. this morning when 11 wounded were brought in,
they were not from the trenches but had been sniped while moving about in the gully
leading to the trenches. During the day about 50 others have been wounded the
same way, evidently a party of Turks have got a position covering a portion of this
gully. Off duty at 7.30 a.m. Has been a very quiet day except for the snipers. Our
destroyers seem to be very much on the alert for submarines, patrolling increasingly.
About a dozen shells were fired over us and fell in the sea this afternoon. About
2000 or 3000 reinforcements arrived today and were landed safely. On duty 7.30
p.m. Fine day. Timeline

Thursday 27th May, 1915

Not a single man brought in all night, so had a good sleep. Turks fired a few shells
about 5 a.m. into the sea, did not hit anything at all. Off duty at 7.30 a.m. Wrote a
few letters after breakfast. Heard HMS Majestic had been sunk in the Dardenelles,
don't know if it is true. Has been very quiet with us, we keep wondering when we are
going to make a general advance. About 7 p.m. another chap and myself had a
very narrow escape, a shrapnel shell from the enemy burst just above our dugout
where we were sitting talking, the bullets out of shell fell all round us, riddled our
canvas roof and overcoat hanging inside, but missed us both. 2 mules were killed,
Indian wounded within 5 yards of us. Timeline

Friday 28th May, 1915

Only 5 wounded brought in up to midnight last night and none at all from midnight to
7.30 a.m. when I went off duty. Things are very quiet in trenches, occasional bursts
of rifle fire during night, apparently very little damage done to our fellows. Has been
just as quiet all day, our guns firing at intervals and the enemy replying in a very
uncertain manner. Wrote some letters and posted them this morning, also received
some tonight. On duty 7.30 p.m. only one wounded man up to 10 p.m. and about
half a dozen sick. Some of our boys, fortunately only a few, are feeling strain and
breaking up, couple of days fixes some of them up. Did little washing today.

Saturday 29th May, 1915

Very quiet up to 3.30 a.m. when enemy made an attack on our trenches. They
started by blowing up portion of our trenches which they had sapped, followed up
with a charge and actually got into our trenches where fierce fighting took place, our
boys eventually drove them back with heavy loss and also took and held one of their
trenches. Our losses fairly severe, but enemy's very severe. Was kept very busy
dealing with the wounded until 7.30 a.m. when I came off duty. Turks shell fire very
heavy on the beach for part of morning, but very little damage done. Party bearers
brought in wounded man, started off for more, one killed 20 yards from us, shot
through heart. Say 16 Turkish prisoners brought in, one wounded. Had swim this
afternoon. Went on duty at 7.30 p.m.

Sunday 30th May, 1915

Very quiet night again, about six wounded brought in during the whole night. Off
duty 7.30 a.m. Heard from one of his pals that Stan Cohen is reported missing. He
was with 5th Battalion when they left this part to go round and attack "Gape-tepe",
not seen afterwards. Received news 2 of our submarines got through Dardanelles
and did great deal of damage to enemy shipping, returning safely. On duty 7.30
p.m. very quiet up to midnight. Had swim this afternoon. Our destroyers bombarded
enemy's trenches very heavily. New Zealand outpost cut off by the enemy all day, I
believe our troops got through to them this evening and relieved them. No
battleships about here now, only destroyers. Blew up a bit rough this evening.

Monday 31st May, 1915

About 8 wounded brought in between midnight and 7.30 a.m., all badly wounded.
Went for swim at 7 a.m. Off duty at 7.30 a.m. About 1000 reinforcements landed
this morning. About 9 a.m. had pleasant surprise, had visit from W. Hill, went for
walk with him to the extreme line we hold on right flank and saw A. Milne. Had long
chat and had look at enemy's trenches, about 1000 yards away, through glasses.
Our aeroplane sighted enemy submarine and dropped bomb, don't know if took
effect, also destroyers raced up, looked out for submarine coming up, don't know if
successful. On duty at 7.30 p.m. Had swim this afternoon. No patients up to 12