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  • Title
    Series 01: Robert Joseph Stewart papers, ca. 1890-ca. 1971
  • Level of description
  • Date

    ca. 1890-ca. 1971
  • Type of material
  • Reference code
  • Issue Copy
    Digitised : 2014

    On the outbreak of World War I, Stewart is reputed to have been the first volunteer from Parkes to enlist in the Australian Imperial Force. He embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board Transport A23 Suffolk on 18 October 1914 at the age of 20. He was appointed Second Lieutenant in 'B' Company, 2nd Battalion and promoted to First Lieutenant en route to the Middle East. Following further training in Egypt, he served in the Gallipoli campaign wherein he was wounded. He was evacuated to Alexandria and then sent to convalesce back home. In February 1916 he passed fit to return to active service, was promoted Captain and appointed Second-in-Command of A Company, 34th Battalion on the Western Front. He was awarded the Military Cross for his part in an offensive at Grey Farm.
    In late 1917 Stewart volunteered for a secret military mission. He joined Dunsterforce, under the British commander General L. C. Dunsterville who had been immortalised as 'Stalky' by Rudyard Kipling in Stalky and Co.. This special force's chief operation, sited in the buffer state of Persia, was to repel Turkish and German penetration into India where British interests were at stake. Stewart was appointed Field Engineer, Royal Engineers, for the Hamadan Lines-of-Communication Area, with the temporary rank of Major, R.E., responsible for constructing roads, bridges and military installations. He was mentioned in dispatches for his service. In January 1919 he was released from Dunsterforce and returned to Australia via India. Discharged, he resumed working in his father's office in Parkes, then took up grazing and bought a property at nearby Yeoval.
  • Scope and Content
    ITEM 01
    Robert Joseph Stewart diary, 25 September-9 December 1914

    ITEM 02
    Robert Joseph Stewart diary, 1 January-31 December 1915

    ITEM 03
    Robert Joseph Stewart photographs, ca. 1890-194-

    ITEM 04
    Memoirs of a Colonial Boy by Robert Joseph Stewart, ca. 1971
  • General note

    State Library of New South Wales collection of World War I diaries
    Partially Microfilmed : CY 4971, frames 1 - 215 (see individual records for details)
  • Name
  • Subject

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