Miller Mack was one of the first Indigenous Australians to fight in the First World War. He was one of at least 1000, according to Gary Oakley. v@e

"Our invisible compatriots. Nice one Cara." KB Miller Mack was one of the first Indigenous Australians to fight in the First World War. He was one of at least according to Gary Oakley.

Frank Hurley’s striking photo of Australian soldiers the morning after the Battle of Passchendaele, 1917

The morning after the first battle of Passchendaele, Australian Infantry wounded around a blockhouse near the site of Zonnebeke Railway Station, 12 October Photo by Frank Hurley.

Aboriginal Australians were present in almost every Australian campaign of World War I. Some might find it strange that Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders wanted to serve a country that did not recognise them as citizens (until 1967….) Reasons for enlistment were many: some hoped that war service might help the Indigenous campaign for citizenship and equality; some believed the war was just; others sought adventure, good pay, or joined up because mates did. Portrait of indigenous soldier

Aboriginal Australians were present in almost every Australian campaign of…

Australian troops storm an Ottoman trench during the bloody battle of Anzac, Gallipoli. 1915 New Dramatic Photos Thread (READ 1st POST) - Page 8

Australian troops storm an Ottoman trench during the bloody battle of Anzac, Gallipoli. 1915 New Dramatic Photos Thread (READ POST) - Page 8

Mouquet Farm after the fighting on the Somme in 1916.

Mouquet Farm after the fighting on the Somme in

Mouquet Farm prior to the fighting on the Somme.

Mouquet Farm prior to the fighting on the Somme.

Upon their return to Australia, instead of recognition and grace, the 'Black Diggers' XXXXXXXXXX were not eligible for returned servicemen land grants or even membership of Returned Services League (RSL) clubs, and sometimes even found that the government had taken their children away while they defended their country...

Studio portrait of 57247 Trooper (Tpr) Horace Thomas Dalton, Light Horse Regiment. Tpr Dalton, of Dunwich, Qld, enlisted on 16 May and embarked for service overseas aboard HMAT Port .

After returning, many Aboriginals found out that racism and prejudice were as abundant as before the war. 'I know of at least one Aboriginal veteran of World War I who was not only denied his pay packet and his pension, but upon his return was given the very same rags he had been wearing the day he volunteered, and sent back to work on a station, as if the trenches and mud and the fighting had never happened. —Gracelyn Smallwood, reader's letter

Private Gilbert Williams was discharged from the AIF in 1917 after being found “medically unfit for further service” - according to his family, it was due to the colour of his skin.


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