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bullanginya Profile
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Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918


Would anyone have or know of a list of the 119 men of the 1st Battalion AIF who mutinied on the 21st September 1918? I believe they were all charged with the lesser charge of desertion (which did not carry the sentence of death) and all bar one were found guilty. Apparently the convicted men eventually had their sentences remitted after the intervention of Generals Monash and Hobbs but followed the 1st Bn around for many weeks, possibly till the war’s end? Also, does anyone know if the final sentences were all the same or varied from case to case?
Any help, comments much appreciated,
Regards
Stephen
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Re: Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918


Hi Stephen, an interesting topic, but unfortunately I cannot help with info. The 1st is a Btn I've never researched any members of. Have you come across any wording on a service record which indicates a soldier was part of the group? Graeme
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frev Profile
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Re: Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918



Hi Stephen
As Graeme said - an interesting topic - afraid I can't help you with an actual list either - but if you're prepared to put in the leg-work - I can give you an idea of how to create that list.

If you open the record search on the National Archives website and type in the keywords:
1st Battalion Court Martial October 1918 - it will bring up 141 entries (some of these are 1st Pioneer & Machine Gun Battalions - so you just have to weed these out)

These Court Martial documents haven't been digitized yet, but if you look up the service record of each man listed, it will give you those details & confirm whether he was a part of the mutiny.

The 2 I checked were James ELLEN 3759 & Cyril James HISCOCK 6812. Both were charged with desertion on the day of the 21/9/18 - their Courts Martial were carried out on the 16th Oct & 18th Oct respectively.
They were both sentenced to 3 years - held in Military prisons - and finally sent to HM Prison England 28/3/19, and both then had their sentences suspended 25/4/19.

Good luck, Frev

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bullanginya Profile
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Re: Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918


Thanks Graeme and Frev,
I went on the AWM tour of the Western Front in late April early May, and on one of the last days we spent it following the Australian advance from Villers-Bretonneux to Montbrehain, much more comfortably of course, in a nice big bus. One of our many stops was in a back lane just beside Beaurevior I think it was, anyhow the tour guide said that this was the spot where the mutiny occured and he went on to outline the direction where the remaining men of the 1st Bn went back in to the attack. Apparently the mutineers were none to popular within the AIF, even though a lot of men sympathised with the reasons, most felt that that the battalion always came first, and that they had brought shame on the unit by leaving other members to go back in to the fighting. It was sort of distinctly different from the "disbandment mutinies" which occured around the same time.
The whole thing caught my interest, and I thought may be a good subject for a short story or article, and thanks Frev for your clues, I thought maybe someone may have done already the hard work. I will follow your recommendations and see how I go,
thanks
Stephen
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Re: Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918


G'day Stephen.

Circa 1980 the ABC presented two "school" programs on WW1, "Remember the Somme" and "Mutiny on the Western Front". The second was not restricted to the Mutiny, but did contain an interview with a very saddened Mutineer. He felt, justifiably IMHO, badly treated, and seemed genuinely convinced that 'returning' would have been ratting on his mates. A non-mutineer expressed the opposite opinion.

I 'think' the programs were available from the Victorian "Academy of the Moving Image"
which is now at Federation Square.

ooRoo
Pat

PS
I have often meant to find out what the actual strength of the Battalion was on that date.

Last edited by paddy39, 8/29/2006, 11:49 pm
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Darryl Kelly Profile
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Re: Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918


G'day Stephen

I have a significant amount of info on these men which I was assembling for a biographical booklet. Happy to assist where able.

Regards

Darryl
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Re: Mutiny 1st Battalion September 1918


Hi Paddy,

119 men of the 1st Bn AIF mutinied in September 1918, and 78 did not. Approx. 197 men total strength. I got this information from Alf Davis 5996 1st Bn AIF who I had the honour to meet in 1981.

I have some other info if you would like it, please contact me.

Best Regards,

John

P.S. Alfred Burwood 4493 1st Bn AIF was my Grandfather.
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