Topic: BatzG - Anzac
The Battle of Anzac Cove
Gallipoli, 25 April 1915
2nd Infantry Brigade War Diary
The following is a transcription of the War Diary of the 2nd Infantry Brigade, AIF, of their role in the landings at Anzac on 25 April 1915.
The following notes were found in Major Cass's haversack and refer to operations of 25th April and subsequent days. They are entered up in case the original War Diary is not found.
Narrative of operations of 2nd Infantry Brigade.
25 April 1915
On Sunday April 25th 1915 the 2nd Infantry Brigade began disembarking in tows from SS Galeka, Novian and Clan McGillivray at 6am. Tows of naval and ships boats were brought to the ships sides and having wounded men on board considerable delay to arrangements made for disembarking ensued. Consequently boats from SS Galeka arrived before Brigade Headquarters. Shrapnel fire from Kaba Tepe caused many casualties and damaged several boats before troops landed. The beach became to a certain extent congested and units soon became intermingled. The Seventh and Fifth Infantry Battalions were pushed forward across the big valley and climbed the spur terminating in 224 Q3 making their way eastward, towards the 400 plateau 224 N1.4.7. and reinforcing the 1st Infantry Brigade. Portions of the 8th Battalion and 6th Battalion were diverted south east to guard the right flank.
By noon the 3rd Infantry Brigade, reinforced by 2nd Infantry Brigade, had reached the eastern edge of the 400 contour overlooking the valley running south west from 224 D to 212 G.
The units of the whole line were very intermingled but rallied round any officer near them irrespective of units. Some units pushed forward down into the valley and gained a footing on the opposite slopes.
About 1 pm heavy shrapnel fire from the northern flank enfiladed the line and caused many casualties. The higher ground on the north 224 D.F dominated this position of the line and ultimately caused a withdrawal of most of the advanced troops leaving a few isolated groups who had managed to get into positions which afforded some cover from shrapnel fire.
The enemy followed up this movement and attempted to force their way through the line at a gap between the right of 6th Infantry Battalion and the left of 8th Infantry Battalion. This gap was closed by moving positions of the 8th Infantry Battalion to the left and finally the 4th Infantry Battalion 1st Infantry Brigade was put in to fill the space. The right of the Brigade - the 8th Infantry Battalion almost complete - and a portion of the 6th held its ground although heavily attacked. The enemy made several charges but were repulsed by fire alone.
Casualties were very heavy and many officers were killed and wounded. This tended to make control of such a very long line of intermixed units very difficult, but men responded readily. By dark the line had established itself firmly and during the night dug itself in where it lay. Several charges were made at various times during the night against portions of the line but were checked by fire alone.
26 April 1915
At 7am heavy shrapnel fire was directed against the troops, but with little result as troops had dug in.
During the morning the shrapnel fire continued at intervals. As troops had retained their battle positions and were under fire, most of the night, reorganisation was impossible and troops remained under the leaders to whom they had attached themselves.
At 3 pm an advance of the centre of the lines was ordered to get a better position. The move was successfully carried out in the face of heavy rifle and machine gun fire, and later, shrapnel, which again caused heavy loss. The ground gained was held and strengthened as rapidly as possible. Troops dug all night and by daylight were safe. At date of writing, this line remained unchanged.
Citation: The Battle of Anzac Cove, Gallipoli, 25 April 1915, 2nd Infantry Brigade War Diary