[ Contents | Search | Post | Reply | Next | Previous | Up ]

Famous Beersheba Photo - True Story Uncovered?

From: Tony Holly (anthony.holly@bigpond.com)
Date: 6/20/2001
Time: 6:24:43 PM
Remote Name:


I know a lot has been written about the authenticity of the famous photograph of the Charge at Beersheba ranging from it having being taken by a British artillery observer who had been sent foreward, to an account that claims it was staged some years later during a LH exercise in outback NSW.

I have no idea as to the true story, but what does make me curious is that in most places that I see the photograph in print or on the Web, it is attributed to the Australian War Memorial.

I possibly have reason to doubt the location of the original photograph. From early 1997 to mid 1998 I was posted as a YO (young officer) to 4/19 PWLH and I distictly remember a very large print of the charge that hung on a wall of the CO's office. Admittedly I never had the opportunity to examine the print in detail as most of the time I spent in CO's office was at attention with the CO and the Adjutant screaming at me (hello and best regards to Graeme Smith and Andy Hinton if you are out there).

Anyway, I was wondering if an enoumous amount of congecture may be resolved by somebody going and having a look at the back of the print (that was in what looked like a very antique frame) and see if any record of where it came from is there. If this is not successful, then maybe a purusal of the Unit Funds and records of the Property Register or purchases by the Officers Mess of the time may indicate where the print came from. Possibly a chain of custody may be established that will draw some light on the matter.

Are there any currently serving officers of the unit out here who could help with the above?

Tony Holly

Last changed: June 20, 2001