"At a mile distant their thousand hooves were stuttering thunder, coming at a rate that frightened a man - they were an awe inspiring sight, galloping through the red haze - knee to knee and horse to horse - the dying sun glinting on bayonet points..." Trooper Ion Idriess
The Australian Light Horse Studies Centre aims to present an accurate history as chroniclers of early Australian military developments from 1899 to 1920.
The Australian Light Horse Studies Centre site holds over 12,000 entries and is growing daily.
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Sunday, 24 August 2008
22nd Corps Cavalry Routine Order 553, 18 January 1918 Topic: AIF - Fr - 22 Corps
Apart from the War Diary which presents a reflected view of Regimental history, one of the best sources of understanding the immediate challenges facing a regiment is to be found in the Routine Orders. They are a wealth of detail.
In this case, the 22nd Corps Cavalry Routine Orders for 1918 have been highlighted to illustrate the tempo of this formation from the beginning of the year towards the end of the war. The aim is to illustrate the tumultuous year that followed ending in the defeat of Germany. Too little is known of the role regarding the Light Horse in the drama on the Western Front. This should address some shortfalls of information.
22nd Corps Cavalry Routine Order 553, 18 January 1918
22nd Corps Cavalry Routine Order 553, 18 January 1918, p. 1.
Diaries of AIF Servicemen, Bert Schramm, 24 August 1918 Topic: Diary - Schramm
Diaries of AIF Servicemen
24 August 1918
2823 Private Herbert Leslie SCHRAMM, a 22 year old Farmer from Whites River, South Australia. He enlisted on 17 February 1916; and at the conclusion of the war Returned to Australia, 10 July 1919.
During part of the course of his military service with the AIF, Bert Schramm kept a diary of his life. Bert was not a man of letters so this diary was produced with great effort on his behalf. Bert made a promise to his sweetheart, Lucy Solley, that he would do so after he received the blank pocket notebook wherein these entries are found. As a Brigade Scout since September 1918, he took a lead part in the September Offensive by the Allied forces in Palestine. Bert's diary entries are placed alongside those of the 9th Light Horse Regiment to which he belonged and to the 3rd Light Horse Brigade to which the 9th LHR was attached. On this basis we can follow Bert in the context of his formation.
The complete diary is now available on the Australian Light Horse Studies Centre Site at:
Nominal Roll, AWM133, Nominal Roll of Australian Imperial Force who left Australia for service abroad, 1914-1918 War.
War Diaries and Letters
All War Diaries and letters cited on this site should be read in conjunction with the Australian Light Horse Studies Centre, War Diaries and Letters, Site Transcription Policy which may be accessed at:
The following entries are extracted and transcribed from the 9th Light Horse Regiment War Diary, the originals of which are held by the Australian War Memorial. There are 366 entries on this site. Each day has entries as they occurred from 1914 to 1919. In addition to the 9th Light Horse Regiment War Diary, when appropriate, entries from the 3rd Light Horse Brigade War Diary and other regiments with the Brigade will also appear. Entries from the unit history, Darley, TH, With the Ninth Light Horse in the Great War, Adelaide, Hassell Press, 1924 will also appear from time to time. The aim is to give the broadest context to the story and allow the reader to follow the day to day activities of the regiment. If a relative happened to have served in the regiment during the Great War, then this provides a general framework in which the individual story may be told.
Carew Reynell Diary - We have had the Leinster Regiment men with us a good deal lately. 25 are sent up each day to learn trench discipline, sniping etc. They are the absolute bally limit. A more miserable useless lot of Devils I can't imagine. They seem to have no spirit or pride of any sort and just mooch around in what Darley calls a "We're here because we're here" style and it describes it well. I hate to say such a rotten demeaning thing but I really feel that one could do more with one battalion of Australians or New Zealanders than 5 Battalions of these.
On the whole their officers are also a wretchedly incompetent lot. We have been disappointed in their fighting capacity and there have been numerous cases of "Wouldn't follow" and "Cleared out". They have a sprinkling of good officers and NCOs from the Permanent Army and they are good but poor fellows feel very ashamed of their units and it's pathetic to hear them. One of them said "My fellows won’t care but if I had 20 Australians we could have taken and held the trench." There is no doubt about it our fellows "Can do" and died like Gentlemen no matter what their previous employ may have been. If we have a fair sample of Australians here they are a damned sight better tribe, the Australians, than I ever thought.
Their dash and pluck I hoped was there. Their initiative and resource I knew was there. But their dogged determination, patience and cheerful fortitude I never believed in - but it's there too. We have had a few who "dropped their bundles" and gone sick but we have a good proportion who have stuck it out to the bitter end and who have wither been sent away with grey haggard faces and high temperatures or who are still walking about with ghastly colours. Thirteen cases of Typhoid were reported in our Division yesterday and Dysentery has been very bad.
As our numbers dwindle it makes the work all the more strenuous for those who are left as we have the same line to hold and it means few resting all the time, and a bigger proportion on sentry go and reliefs for the same. One man in every three is on the look out at the same time all night in the fire trench and we must keep our fire trench numbers up and so as our numbers reduce our number in the support trench will dwindle accordingly.
However I have done everything possible to get the maximum amount of rest for the men day and night and we can hang on no doubt for quite a while yet. the 2nd Australian Division started landing the other day and perhaps they will be able to make a push. Generally speaking the Turks are dug in front of us everywhere on commanding ground and on our left seems to be too good for the Kitchener Army crowd who are barely holding their ground.
We are strictly on the defensive as the attack on 7 August showed that the confined space across which any attack must be made is so swept with converging fire from rifle and machine gun fire that no living being can cross it. Of course there was a mistake about the artillery and the attack was entirely unsupported after a bombardment which was just a joke. But still each line as they reached a certain zone were just mowed down instantaneously and some men's legs were immediately severed by machine gun fire. Not one got back except those who either didn't get as far as this zone or who were wounded and dropped into dead ground and returned on their bellies in dead ground or came after dark. It was an absolute wall of lead.
Thursday, August 24, 1916
9th Light Horse Regiment Location - Hod Nabit
9th Light Horse Regiment War Diary - Operation Order received from Brigade for a reconnaissance in conjunction with New Zealand Mounted Rifles Brigade of the country north of Salmana and endeavour to round up a number of Bedouins known to be in the country.
Regimental Operation Order No. 1 issued and attached.
Regiment moved out at 1100 joined rest of Brigade at Hadaniya and left at 1200 as Support. 10th Light Horse Regiment Advance Guard.
Friday, August 24, 1917
9th Light Horse Regiment Location - El Shellal
9th Light Horse Regiment War Diary - At 0300 the Regiment moved across the Wadi Ghuzze and pushed out through Goz el Geleib.
Here “B” Squadron took over the advanced guard and “C” Squadron pushed out to the left until the line Point 730 exclusive, Point 630 to Point 550 and Point 510 was occupied by about 0700.
Touch was obtained with the 8th Light Horse Regiment on the right and a troop under Linacre, Lieutenant FJ, was sent to "Two Tree Farm" to obtain touch with the Divisional troops at Point 300. The Command Post was established about ½ mile west of point 630 and visual touch gained with Brigade headquarters. “B” Squadron found a Turkish Infantryman wandering about unarmed and from information obtained from the interpreter, it appeared he had been driven away by the Turks, possibly a cholera carrier.
At 0730 a special patrol moved out under Ragless, Captain BB to reconnoitre the El Girheir to Khirbit Imleih. An enemy patrol was encountered - holding the water at Bir el Ifteis - otherwise everything was clear. Throughout the day the enemy showed little movement.
At 1700 word was received from Brigade Headquarters to withdraw the forward screen and to be in readiness to withdraw to El Shellal. At 1730 two enemy aeroplanes flew over and dropped three bombs on the led horses - doing no damage however - the horses being well scattered.
At 1815 the Regiment withdrew keeping touch with the 8th Light Horse Regiment and concentrated at Goz el Geleib and returned to the bivouac of the previous night at El Shellal watering horses on the way in.
Saturday, August 24, 1918
9th Light Horse Regiment Location - Enab
9th Light Horse Regiment War Diary - Andrews, Captain, evacuated sick to hospital.
Regiment marched out from Enab at 1930 and arrived at Latron at 1030.
Sunday, August 24, 1919
9th Light Horse Regiment Location - Adelaide
9th Light Horse Regiment War Diary - Regiment disbanded.
The following weeks will see the various pages from the Hotchkiss Portable Machine Gun Handbook, the official manual issued by the company for the use of troops in the field. The Hotchkiss Gun was introduced in the Light Horse formations during the early months of 1917. The introduction of this robust and portable gun gave the Light Horse Regiments additional mobile fire power which considereably added to their ability to sustain light combat situations and defend against vastly numerically superior forces. Apart from being an excellent weapon, it was in much demand by the Turkish forces who considered the capture of a Hotchkiss Gun well worth any risks involved in the process. This is a manual produced in 1917 and illustrates the method by which the Hotchkiss Gun was packed and moved throughout the Palestine campaign.
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