The French Australian Review – No 59 Australian Summer 2015
(SPECIAL WORLD WAR I ISSUE)
STUART MACINTYRE, Foreword
COLIN NETTELBECK, Introduction
This article examines the way the memory of the battle of Fromelles has been sustained in private and public spheres. It identifies three distinct phases from 1916 to the present. First, remembrance was predominantly private and localised, driven by returned servicemen and families. Second, a resurgence of interest in war memory saw Fromelles enter a public commemoration phase from the 1980s. Finally, with the recovery of the Fromelles soldiers, there has emerged a major reconnection between Fromelles and Anzac in public discourse.
Keywords: Fromelles, RSL, renaissance of war memory, personal memory, politics of commemoration, Lambis Englezos
JACQUELINE DWYER, Ahead of their Time – the French Economic Mission to Australia 1918
This article undertakes a more detailed description and analysis of the Mission than has been done to date, in order to cast light on French-Australian relations of the time. The author has drawn on a number of sources: the Mission’s official report for the general public, The Economic Relations between France and Australia; an article by Robert Aldrich ‘La Mission Française en Australie de 1918’, which was based on the diplomatic archives of the Quai d’Orsay; and the Rapport Thomsen.
Keywords: French Economic Mission to Australia, General Pau, trade, wool, Labour Mission
This article argues that the story of a magazine, The “Dernière Heure”, produced by members of the AIF awaiting repatriation after the Armistice, contains many aspects of the complex story of the disengagement of Australian forces from the First World War, an assessment of the costs and an awareness of a deepening friendship between Australia and France.
Keywords: The “Dernière Heure”, The Jackass, Australian General Hospital in Rouen, James R. W. Taylor, Cyril Leyshon White, 1918-9
Using her grandfather’s diary and a few letters that have survived, the author describes her grandfather’s experience as a chaplain with the Ninth Battalion on the Western Front. The published memoires of other chaplains add further substance to the experiences and attitudes of chaplains at the front.
Keywords: Ninth Battalion, Reverend Chaplain Joseph Lundie, 1916, the Western Front, Fleurbaix, conscription debate, chaplains
PAULINE GEORGELIN, Encounters between Diggers and Poilus: Finding the History in Family History
This article investigates the intersection between family history and its wider context, by exploring aspects of the interactions between French and Australian soldiers. It draws on family history research about the author’s grandfather who was born in France, moved to Australia and returned to France as a digger.
Keywords: family history, 14th Battalion, the Western Front, 1918, the ‘International Post’ interaction between French and Australian soldiers, the AIF Education Service
This article is an exploration of the wartime connections between Australian soldiers and the people of France and Belgium. Its starting point is a postcard sent by a young Belgian woman to an Australian soldier (the author’s grandfather) after the war (1919).
Keywords: 21st battalion, 1919, host families, learning French, the Western Front, Nalinnes, contributions of the troops to village and rural life
The author, who is an author and illustrator of childrens’ books describes his research about the battle of Villers-Bretonneux and his visit to the town in 2011 to photograph, sketch and research locations for the book.
Keywords: Villers-Bretonneux, March 1918, role of the AIF in recapturing the town, Brigadier General Harold Edward Elliott, Brigadier General Thomas William Glasgow, German offensive on the Somme
The author was a former inhabitant of Villers-Bretonneux and president of the Franco-Australian Assocaiaion of the village from 2007-2010. The article recalls her childhood memories of Villers-Bretonneux and her return, many years later to the village.
Keywords: impact of the war on the village, establishment of Museum in the school, Comité d’accueil Franco-Australien, the Australian Memorial, black Saturday bushfires in Victoria, 2009, Franco-Australian Association of Villers-Bretonneux
This article recounts how Adelaide decided to adopt Dernancourt in Picardie at the end of World War I
Keywords: Dernancourt, the Somme, the British League of Help, Berthe Mouchette, Maire Lion, General Pau, fundraising activities
Notes on Contributors to this Special Edition of FAR