Topic: BatzG - Anzac
The Battle of Anzac Cove
Gallipoli, 25 April 1915
New Zealand Infantry Brigade War Diary
The following is a transcription of the War Diary of the 4New Zealand Infantry Brigade, of their role in the landings at Anzac on 25 April 1915.
25 April 1915
The Goslar sails for Kaba Tepe at 9 am which then was preceded by the majority of the Transport conveying Infantry Brigade at 1 pm. The ship passed the south of the Dardanelles where the landing of the 29th Division of Cape Helles covered by the guns of the Allied Fleet was witnessed. The Goslar arrived off Kaba Tepe at 3 pm had succeeded in getting ashore at daybreak and was then holding the high ground had made east of beach and north of Kaba Tepe where they are suffering severely from Turkish shell fire. Infantry Brigade had landed out of the Transports piece meal and had then directed by companies and half companies into places where they were most required. At the moment Brigade Headquarters landed on the beach about 5 pm which we were informed that Brigadier General HB Walker, Brigadier General, General Staff of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps had taken over temporary command of the Brigade vice Colonel Fullarton on the ????, Headquarters joined the Brigadier General on the Plateau 224 H4. The situation was then as follows - Brigade Headquarters and Otago Battalion on the Plateau, Canterbury and Auckland Battalions very much intermingled with Australian units were in the front line of ?????? covering the landing. The Wellington Battalion was still on board. The troops landed were without support from any field guns. Artillery support from the Navy was first quite inadequate owing largely to the novelty of the conditions and the difficulties of observation and communication. Consequently infantry suffered severely from enemy shell fire. Between 5.45 pm and 6 pm the Otago Battalion had suffered 30 casualties on the Plateau from shell fire. Headquarters were without any information as to the disposition of the units in the front line but during the evening received several messages the general thrust of which was that the casualties were very severe everywhere that the lines had considerable gaps - then that the men had stood much punishment and were seriously disorganised. It was represented to Divisional Headquarters that the landing of field guns during the night was an absolute necessity if the position was to be maintained. During the night there was a great deal of firing and the Turks attacked in several places but the line was nowhere broken.
26 April 1915
The enemy's guns again opened with remarkable accuracy along the plateau and landing place. A Mountain Battery had been brought up to the plateau the evening before soon picked up the hostile batteries. The burst of that shrapnel gave the line to the Queen Elizabeth which succeeded in silencing the batteries for several hours.
During the night of the 25th and 26th the Wellington Battalion less half a company which was sent to extreme right of position - landed and came under the orders of Divisional Headquarters as General Reserve. Thus the whole Brigade, "A" Echelon consisting of personnel, tools, water receptacles and ammunition (200 rounds per man) were ashore. It was decided as far as possible to relieve the Auckland Battalion from the front line and concentrate it on the Plateau. Its place to be taken in the front line by ½ Otago Battalion who were to be under the orders of Colonel Maclagan.
Two companies Canterbury Battalion under Major Loach who had succeeded Lieutenant Colonel Stewart (killed in action) had gone the previous evening to reinforce 33 men of various units under Captain Salmonson who reported he was hard pressed on extreme left of line was ascertained to be holding a spur on 237 X7. The Auckland Battalion less a large number of men mixed up in other units was concentrated by the evening. The Otago Battalion less 2 Companies did not succeed in reaching the front line and entrenched in a nullah for the night. During the day it was decided to reorganise into sections. The night passed quietly on the Plateau but there was a determined attack on the Australians on the night which was repelled.
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Citation: The Battle of Anzac Cove, Gallipoli, 25 April 1915, New Zealand Infantry Brigade War Diary