Investigating the Battle of the Wasser

Student activities

Task no. 1

Reporting the Battle of the Wasser

Using the sources below, as well as the links to the newspaper articles on Trove, complete the following tasks:

  1. Imagining you are a war correspondent, and you have interviewed the soldiers who provide their accounts of the event in the diaries below, write a 600-word newspaper report on what happened at the Battle of Wasser. Ensure your article covers the details of where and when the Battle took place, who was involved and why it may have broken out, as well as providing an overview of the public reaction back in Australia. 
  2. How do the versions of events differ between the newspaper report from the time to the individual accounts in the sources provided, and why do you think this is?
  3. How do you think knowledge of these events might impact on the Anzac legend?

Trove newspaper articles

Thursday, January 21, 1915. (1915, January 21). The Argus, p. 6

Captain Bean's Report: Wide-spread disappointment. (1915, January 21). The Argus, p. 7

Statement by Mr. Jensen. (1915, January 22). The Argus, p. 6

Australians in Egypt: A Chaplain's Viewpoint. (1915, April 6). The Argus, p. 7

Australian Soldiers in Egypt: Alleged Misconduct Denied. (1915, April 23). Kyabram Guardian, p. 4

Returned Soldiers: 322 Sent Home. (1915, April 24). The Argus, p. 19

Note about sources

In conducting your research, you will need to click on each collection item below (on the icon with an “SL” in a box at the bottom left corner of the image) and then again on the image in the pop-up to access the full record, and further sources on the State Library’s website.

All of the chosen sources have been transcribed (i.e. typed up so they are easier to read). The link to the transcribed version of the source can be found on its online catalogue record.

The entries specifically addressing the Battle of the Wasser can be found on the following pages for each source (note: these pages are easiest to find in the transcribed versions):

  • Sam Norris' diary: pages 62-63
  • Gordon Macrae's diary: page 66
  • Thomas Crooks' diary: page 5
  • Eric Ward's diary: pages 36-41
  • Alfred Morris' diary: page 54
Item 01: Sam Norris war diary, 1 February 1915-1 May 1915, 1 February 1915-1 May 1915
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Item 01: Gordon Macrae diary, 12 November 1914-4 January 1916, 12 November 1914-4 January 1916
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Crooks war diary, 11 February 1915 - 24 May 1918 / Thomas Ray Crooks, 11 February 1915 - 24 May 1918
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Ward diary, 6 October 1914 - 28 July 1915 / Eric Harford Ward, 6 October 1914 - 28 July 1915
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Item 01: Alfred Prichard Kington Morris diary, 18 October 1914-October 1915, 18 October 1914-October 1915
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[J.F. Smith of the 7th Light Horse in Egypt and Palestine], ca. 1914-1918
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