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Category:1st AIF/4th Div/4th Bde

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  • 13th Battalion AIF (New South Wales) [4th Infantry Brigade]
    Formed New South Wales September1914. Departed Melbourne Ulysses 22 December 1914. 
    • 1st Reinforcements departed Sydney Berrima 22 December 1914, 
    • 2nd Reinforcements departed Sydney Seang Bee 11 February 1915, 
    • 3rd Reinforcements departed Sydney Seang Choon 11 February 1915, 
    • 4th Reinforcements departed Sydney Shropshire 17 March 1915, 
    • 5th Reinforcements departed Sydney Kyarra 13 April 1915, 
    • 6th Reinforcements departed Sydney Wandilla 14 June 1915, 
    • 7th Reinforcements departed Sydney Shropshire 20 August 1915, 
    • 8th Reinforcements departed Sydney Runic 9 August 1915, 
    • 9th Reinforcements departed Sydney Argyllshire 30 September 1915, 
    • 10th Reinforcements departed Sydney Ballarat 6 September 1915, 
    • 11th Reinforcements departed Sydney Port Lincoln 14 October 1915, 
    • 12th Reinforcements departed Sydney Suevic 20 December 1916, 
    • 13th Reinforcements departed Sydney Aeneas 20 December 1915, 
    • 14th Reinforcements departed Sydney Ballarat 16 February 1916, 
    • 15th Reinforcements departed Sydney Star of England 8 March 1916, 
    • 16th Reinforcements departed Sydney Star of Victoria 31 March 1916, 
    • 17th Reinforcements departed Sydney Nestor 9 April 1916, 
    • 18th Reinforcements departed Sydney Clan Macgillivray 3 May 1916, 
    • 19th Reinforcements departed Sydney Wiltshire 22 August 1916, 
    • 20th Reinforcements departed Sydney Euripides 9 September 1916, 
    • 21st Reinforcements departed Sydney Ceramic 7 October 1916, 
    • 22nd Reinforcements departed Sydney Port Lincoln 8 November 1916, 
    • 23rd Reinforcements departed Sydney Beltana 25 November 1916, 
    • 24th Reinforcements departed Sydney  Wiltshire 17 February 1917, 
    • 25th Reinforcements departed Sydney Marathon 10 May 1917, 
    • 26th Reinforcements departed Sydney Runic 22 March 1918.

  • Battle Honours: Landing at Anzac, Anzac, Defence of Anzac, Suvla, Sari Bair, Gallipoli 1915,  Egypt 1915-16, Somme 1916-18, Pozieres, Bullecourt, Messines 1917, Ypres 1917, Menin Road, Polygon Wood,  Passchendaele, Arras 1918, Ancre 1918, Hamel, Amiens, Albert 1918, Hindenburg Line, Epehy, France and Flanders 1916-18

  • Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

by Ross Mallett (ADFA)


13th Battalion

The 13th Battalion AIF was raised from late September 1914, six weeks after the outbreak of the First World War. The battalion was recruited in New South Wales, and with the 14th, 15th and 16th Battalions formed the 4th Brigade, commanded by Colonel John Monash.

The Brigade embarked for overseas in late December. After a brief stop in Albany, Western Australia, it proceeded to Egypt, arriving in early February 1915. Australia already had an AIF division there, the 1st. When the 4th Brigade arrived in Egypt it became part of the New Zealand and Australian Division.

The 4th Brigade landed at ANZAC Cove late in the afternoon of 25 April 1915. From May to August, the battalion was heavily involved in establishing and defending the ANZAC front line. In August, the 4th Brigade attacked Hill 971. The hill was taken at great cost, although Turkish reinforcements forced the Australians to withdraw. The 13th also suffered casualties during the attack on Hill 60 on 27 August. The battalion served at ANZAC until the evacuation in December.

After the withdrawal from Gallipoli, the battalion returned to Egypt. While in Egypt the AIF was expanded and was reorganised. The 13th Battalion was split and provided experienced soldiers for the 45th Battalion. The 4th Brigade was combined with the 12th and 13th Brigades to form the 4th Australian Division.

In June 1916, the 13th sailed for France and the Western Front. From then until 1918, the battalion took part in bloody trench warfare. Its first major action in France was at Pozières in August. In February 1917, Captain W. H. Murray, who had transferred to the 13th from the 16th Battalion, earned the Victoria Cross for his actions during an attack near Gueudecourt. He became one of the most highly decorated officers in the AIF. The 13th Battalion, along with most of the 4th Brigade, suffered heavy losses at Bullecourt in April when the brigade attacked strong German positions without the promised tank support. The battalion spent much of the remainder of 1917 in Belgium advancing to the Hindenburg Line.

In March and April 1918, the battalion helped to stop the German spring offensive. It subsequently played a role in the great allied offensive of 1918, fighting near Amiens on 8 August 1918. This advance by British and empire troops was the greatest success in a single day on the Western Front, one that German General Erich Ludendorff described as “..the black day of the German Army in this war...”.

The 4th Brigade continued operations until late September 1918. On 18 September Maurice Buckley, serving as Sergeant Gerald Sexton, was awarded the Victoria Cross for valour near Le Verguier. At 11 am on 11 November 1918, the guns fell silent. In November 1918 members of the AIF began to return to Australia for demobilisation and discharge. Text from AWM

  • 1090 killed, 2128 wounded (including gassed)
  • Decorations

    • 1 VC
    • 1 CB
    • 5 DSO
    • 33 MC, 1 bar
    • 1 Albert Medal
    • 33 DCM, 1 bar
    • 183 MM, 6 bars
    • 8 MSM
    • 54 MID
    • 11 foreign awards

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