Christmas at War

‘This’ll be over by Christmas’ became more difficult to believe each year that passed during World War I. Australian soldiers, some who had served since the beginning of the war, had spent Christmas days in camps and trenches far from home.  In 1918, an article in a Sydney newspaper reported some words given by a […]

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Getting Along Alright

black and white postcard with image of packed beach with people in early twentieth century fashion, many hold parasols

Leslie Clouten was recovering from his wounds on 28 September 1917 when he wrote a letter to his parents on the back of this folding souvenir postcard booklet. While serving at the front in France in June, Leslie had been injured by a gunshot wound in the abdomen, and was removed to England, suffering continual […]

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A Tragic Paper Trail

In 1925 William and Jane Clouten of Tacoma added the final letter to this pile of correspondence they had been collecting. Creased where they had been folded for dispatch, the documents’ worn edges and dog-eared corners suggest they may have opened and read many times. Each document was a terrible reminder of the loss of […]

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Personal Effects

In this official Australian Imperial Force (AIF) postcard portrait made in 1916, Leslie Clouten, a 20-year-old fisherman from Lake Macquarie, looks proud and confident, still unscarred by the horrors of war. During battle in France in 1917, Leslie was shot in the abdomen. After recovering, he returned to the front, but was wounded again at […]

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As Long As Memory Lasts

There’s a marble stone plaque on Morpeth’s war memorial statue that reads, ‘For King & Country’. Listed there are the names of the local ANZAC soldiers who served in World War One. Third on that list is Lieutenant H. Maynard MM, and below, on another plaque is a commitment, ‘Lest We Forget’. This is a […]

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