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Still Short of the Mark
Still Short of the Mark 
 

This interesting series of snapshots was secured by an Australian soldier at Anzac. The pictures show the various stages in the shelling of a paddle tugboat known as the Marsden. Great interest was taken in the incident by the soldiers, for it occurred in full view of their camp, and in one of the photographs several of the men are seen coolly "snapping" the explosion. Quite a number of shells were fired, falling all round the vessel, before at last one found its mark; when the smoke cleared away this time, it was seen that the fore part of the boat had been blown away. This was quickly followed by another shell, which also found its mark, and the little boat was then seen to have been very considerably damaged. The Marsden had run aground some little time before, and so no great credit was due the Turks for destroying her. She doubtless would have broken up in time by the action of the waves.

Incidents of this character - they occurred occasionally - were greedily seized upon by our troops during their stay on Gallipoli as serving to break the monotony of life in the trenches and dug-outs. For (writes our correspondent) life was really monotonous for whole weeks at a stretch. When there were advances to be made, when we had to charge, or when the Turks took it into their heads to charge our trenches, there was no end of excitement, and we all felt it was good to be alive - even should it be for only a little while longer. Even when there was plenty of sniping the life was "all right"; but when day after day there was nothing but digging, with an occasional snipe, and a few shells bursting, to which we had long since ceased to pay any attention, we longed for a change of any sort; and Johnny Turk making practice at a tugboat was at any rate a diversion.

From: Sydney Mail, 23 February 1916, p. 24.