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Thread: 1806 Pte Ernest Clifton Paul 7 Battalion DOW Gallipoli

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    Default 1806 Pte Ernest Clifton Paul 7 Battalion DOW Gallipoli

    I recently purchased this mans Victory medal.

    Ernest Clifton Paul was born at Yarrawonga and resided at Beechworth. His schooling was at Cobram, so this suggests the family moved about a bit. He was a 25yo labourer when he enlisted in the AIF on the 5th of January 1915. At just under 6 foot, he was a tall man for the times and had blue eyes and black hair. His religion was stated as Roman Catholic and his stated next of kin was his mother Annie Paul. On sign up it was noted his teeth needed attention, this would have happened prior to him leaving as amazingly, the Australians had no dental corp on Gallipoli and men had to "improvise" using fellow soldiers in the ranks who were handy with a pair of pliers.

    He embarked at Melbourne on the (A18) HMAT Wiltshire on 15/1/15

    He joined his battalion on the 2/5/15 and was posted to B company on the 26/5/15.......the day after the landing. He was with the 4th reinforcements, replacing those killed and wounded. Ernest received a gun shot wound to the skull resulting in a compound fracture on 29/5/15.


    He died of wounds at sea on HS Glascow at 10.30 am on 31/5/15 3 miles off Gaba Tepe with Reverend Warner officiating at his burial at sea.
    His effects were sent hom to his mother :

    disc
    pipe
    prayer book
    rosary beads

    Obviously he took his religion seriously.

    In 1920, Ernests mother Annie wrote to the Defence Department in regards to claiming his medals as next of kin. She stated that she didnt know if his father was alive or dead as he "cleared out" 11 years ago and left her to raise the children as best she can and work to pay the debts he left her. She also stated he was a heavy drinker. It was obvious from the letter that life was hard for Annie Paul.

    Fortunately a pension application was approved quite quickly and money was going to her within a month or of Ernest's death.

    Ernest's death wasnt the only hard time for the Paul family. Ernests's younger brother Albert had a torrid time in his AIF service, also with the 7th Battalion. Both brothers would have been together on Gallipoli. Albert received the following wounds :

    29 April Gunshot Wound right shoulder
    8-9 Aug gunshot would to neck and eye.
    12 Aug bomb wound to back and arm.

    This August fighting was the furious fighting of the Battle for Lone Pine. It would appear that although shout, Albert kept fighting. He lost his eye and had a bullet removed from his throat. Even though he was sent home, he managed to re enlist (with one eye) before being caught out.

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    so the poor bastard only lived 3 days once he was sent into battle?

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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonC View Post
    so the poor bastard only lived 3 days once he was sent into battle?
    Thats correct Jason.

    Ernest was brought in to battle with the 4th reinforcements the day after the landing. The Gallipoli landing was a massive battle once the turks worked out what was going on and every battalion got hammered.The 7th battalion were part of the landings second wave and the subsequent battles they had establishing and holding the beach caused them the heaviest losses of any battle they faced. Ernest was one of five officers and 179 men killed or died of wounds in that battle.

    2nd Brigade (5,6,7,8 Battalions) were then moved to a part of Gallipoli where mostly only the British and French fought.....Cape Helles.

    Which brings me to my final medal......a man that died in the Battle for Krithia with the 6th Battalion. Look for a new thread on that one soon.

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    The final tally of the 7th Battalion after the war was :

    1045 killed, 2076 wounded (including gassed)

    There is roughly 1000 men to a battalion, so the 7th was literally destroyed 3 times over.

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