Friday, January 17, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogical Records in 2014 – Week 1 Military Medals

I have decided that I need a challenge to get me blogging again on a regular basis. So I was pleased this morning when I saw Shauna Hicks personal blogging challenge for 2014. Each week Shauna intends to blog about a different genealogical record. I have tried a weekly blogging challenges before and have never lasted more than about 6 weeks, so my aim this year is to improve on this.

Week 1 - Military Medals
Last week's challenge is about military medals. In my direct line I have no one who fought in any recent wars.
However, my parents did have uncles who fought in both the First and the Second World Wars.

William Vesey Dawson 1892 - 1974 - Brisbane 1914

William Vesey Dawson was born in Gladesville on 29th May 1892. His family later moved to the north coast of NSW and it was there that he joined the 5th Australian Light Horse Regiment on 25th October 1914.
He served with this regiment at Gallipoli but it was to be later in the war while he was with the  Camel Transport Corps that he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM).
His official records dated 1st August 1918
From AIF in Egypt. Headquarters, Egyptian Expeditionary Force. Order 22
Awarded Distinguished Conduct Medal. The citation read: For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. He showed great initiative and sill during the operation and set a splendid example to his me.
A letter was sent to his father at Old Bonalbo. Unfortunately his father had died almost 2 years previously.
National Archives of Australia

The only information that family members know about the event is as follows. Bill told one family member that
an officer was detailed to take a number of camels loaded with water and medical supplies to a regiment that was cut off by the Turks. This meant going through the Turkish lines. However, the officer took sick, so it fell to Dad (Bill) as a senior NCO, to do the job...... The camels were muzzled, as were the horses. Anything that may rattle or make any sound was made noise-proof. Horses and camels hooves were tied up with bagging. The party made their way through the enemy lines without a shot being fired. As to which Regiment or Battalion that was cut off, and how they were relieved, is not known.  
Alan Dawson - The Military History of Company Sergeant Major William Vesey Dawson.






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