36th Battalion History

Carmichaels 1000

36TH BATTALION AIF. "Carmichael's Thousand"


The 36th Battalion was raised at Broadmeadow Army Camp, in Newcastle, New South Wales in February 1916. The bulk of the Battalion's recruits had enlisted as a result of a recruiting drive conducted among'st the RIFLE CLUBS of New South Wales by the Minister of Public Information in the New South Wales Government, Ambrose CARMICHAEL. Thus the Battalion became known as "CARMICHAEL'S THOUSAND". Carmichael led by example and enlisted as well, serving in the Battalion as a Captain.

The 36th Battalion became part of the 9th Brigade of the 3rd Australian Division. It left Sydney, bound for the United Kingdom on the 13th of May 1916. Arriving there in early July, the Battalion spent the next four months in training. It crossed to France in late November, and moved into the trenches of the Western Front for the first time on the 4th December, just in time for the onset of the terrible winter of 1916-17.

The Battalion had to wait until the emphasis of the British and Dominion operations switched to the YPRES SECTOR of Belgium in mid 1917 to take part in its first major battle; this was the battle of MESSINES, launched on the 7th of June 1917. With the 9th Brigade held in reserve during the battle of BROODSEINDE RIDGE on the 4th of October, the 36th's next major battle was around PASSCHENDAELE on the 12th of October 1917. Heavy rain, though, had deluged the battlefield, and thick mud tugged at the advancing troops and fouled their weapons. The 36th secured its objective but with open flanks and ineffective artillery support, were forced to withdraw.

For the next five months the 36th alternated between periods of rest, training, labouring, and service in the line. When the German Army launched its last great offensive in the spring of 1918, the battalion was part of the force deployed to defend the approaches to Amiens around Villers-Brentonneux. It took part in a counter-attack at Hangard Wood on the 30th March, and helped to defeat a major drive on Villers-Bretonneux on the 4th April.

The fighting to defend the German offensive had exacted a heavy toll on the 3rd Division, and the 9th Brigade in particular. Reinforcements from Australia were dwindling and thus it was decided to disband one of the 9th Brigade's Battalions to reinforce the other three. The 36th was the Battalion selected. In what one of the Battalion's Officers called an "Unselfish Act" the 36th disbanded on 30th April 1918.

(Extracts from the Australian War Memorial records)


36th Battalion A.I.F, 3rd Australian Infantry Division, 9th Infantry Brigade.

BATTLE HONOURS

Messiness 1917. Ypres. Polygon Wood. Broodseinde. Poelcappele. Passchendaele. Somme 1918. Ancre 1918. Amiens. Albert 1918. Mont St Quentin. Hindenburg Line. St Quentin Canal. France and Flanders 1916-1918.


 COMMANDING OFFICERS:

Lieutenant Colonel: John Martin HAWKEY. M.C.

Lieutenant Colonel: Marcus William LOGAN.

Lieutenant Colonel: John Alexander MILNE. D.S.O.

Lieutenant Colonel: James William Albert SIMPSON. M.C.


 DECORATIONS:

 

DISTINGUISHED SERVICE ORDER: 1

 

Lieutenant Colonel: John Alexander MILNE. D.S.O.

 

MILITARY CROSS: 11

 

Lieutenant Colonel: John Martin HAWKEY. M.C

Major: Walter WELLS. M.C.

Captain. John Edward Wallace BUSHELLE.M.C.

Captain: Ambrose Campbell CARMICHAEL. M.C.

Captain: William James GORDON. M.C.

Lieutenant: 501499 Albert Bissett AMESS. M.C.

Lieutenant: 731 Gordon Mott COX. M.C.


 DISTINGUISHED CONDUCT MEDAL: 3

 

Lieutenant: 561 Stanley Arthur SMITH. D.C.M.  M.M.

Lieutenant: 357 John Thomas STAPLETON. D.C.M.


 

MILITARY MEDAL: 34, 4 x BARS

 

Lieutenant: 561 Stanley Arthur SMITH. D.C.M.  M.M.

Compant Sergeant Major: 484 Ernest Shadrack KEY. M.M

Sergeant: 1405 George Moffatt CARSON. M.M.

Sergeant: 457 Sydney Wakefield GREGG. M.M.

Sergeant: 1142 James Martin JUDD. M.M.

Sergeant: 858 Sydney Horace PETTETT. M.M.

Sergeant: 2374 Alfred Ernest Humphrey ROBERTS. M.M.

Sergeant: 896 Albert Marshall WIDDY. M.M.

Lance Sergeant: 124 Herbert Leslie MARSHALL. M.M

Corporal: 1620 Allan Wentworth BRECHT. M.M.

Lance corporal: 1104 Osborne William John DYKES. M.M.

Private: 466 Walter John HAGAN. + M.M.

Private: 542 Andrew PRESCOTT. M.M.


 

MILITARY SERVICE MEDAL: 3

 

Company Quartermaster Sergeant: 792 Thomas Wiseman HIGGINS. M.S.M.


 

MENTIONED IN DISPATCHES: 13

Captain: Thomas Rodger MacNEE. M.I.D.

Lieutenant: 731 Gordon Mott COX. M.C. M.I.D.

Sergeant: S. LANG 33/36bn

Private: 1671 Thomas LOWREY. M.I.D.


 FOREIGN AWARDS:

 

BELGIAN DECORATION MILITAIRE MEDAL.

 

Private: 1671 Thomas LOWREY.

 

BELGIUM CROIX-de-GUERRE:

 

Sergeant: 789 Ernest Percival HAMMOND.

 

FRENCH CROIX-de-GUERRE:

 

Corporal: 1959 John Joseph CURRAN.

 

FRENCH La CROIX De COMBATTANT

 

Sergeant: 733 Frederick Joseph CAHILL.

 

FRENCH MEDAILLE Du MERITE

 

Sergeant: 733 Frederick Joseph CAHILL.


 

36th Battalion AIF Recruitment Tent, Rutherford Camp 1916

 

36th Battalion 1916, before leaving Newcastle.

 

Officers, 36th Battalion. Meteren, France. 24th January 1918.

 

36th Battalion's last Parade before being disbanded. 30th April 1918.

 

Presented to The Honorable Joseph Farrier COATES. MLC JP.

 

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