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The Task

This task requires you to be an historian, not a pretend one, but a genuine historian. You will find out the history of one soldier, or one name. The information that you will put together will form a unique document. It is unlikely that anyone else has attempted to compile a story (as you will in this task) on your one individual, out of the many Australian soldiers that served in World War 1. Even though much of the information is now publicly available, most writers tend to focus on the high profile figures of the period. The ordinary soldier remains anonymous, except for the surname and initials on the War Memorial. Your task is to personalise one of these anonymous names and find out and record the story in as much detail as you can. You will then present the information in a form that can be made publicly available.

You may complete this task either because you wish to find out more about a relative; or because you have an interest in local history; or in order to complete a task set by your teacher at school. Teachers see Teacher Information.

The first thing to do is to choose a name to research. This may be a family relative or a relative of friends (which may mean that you have access to photographs and personal stories). Look for a soldier from your town using the guide and links on the Research Page or you may choose a name from the list on your local war memorial. The names on the Coonabarabran Memorial Clock Tower are presented for you to view.

Next you should find out as much information as you can using the procedure on the Research Page as a guide. This information is best written as notes in a logical form. Scaffolds in Word format can be downloaded to assist you with this. See Simple Scaffold or Detailed Scaffold.

The rough notes from your scaffold can then be used to write an interesting and accurate story which represents the soldiers experience of WW1. The story together with appropriate pictures can be the basis for a presentation, speech, web page or newspaper article on that soldier. An unfinished example for Henry Leo Field can be downloaded.

 


1st Battalion officers in Egypt 1914. Some of these featured prominently in the Gallipoli landing on 25 April 1915
(Photo H G Carter courtesy Mrs Shirley Clifton)

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Dr P. Morrissey 2010 (updated May 2016)