Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Diggers' War Grave found at Fromelles

26/5/08, ABC The 7:30 Report: Archaeological dig hopes to solve military mystery
An archaeological dig is beginning today in northern France to try to solve a ninety year old mystery. In July 1916, Australian troops were sent into their first big battle on the western front. More than 1700 Australians were killed at the battle of Fromelles. The bodies of 170 Australian soldiers who broke through enemy lines are believed to have been buried by the Germans but the site of the grave has never been discovered.
27/5/07, ABC News: Researchers on verge of finding diggers' graves

For almost a century, Private Harry Willis has been listed as killed in action, no known grave.

26/5/08 ABC News: Fromelles dig finds WWI grave site

An excavation in north-eastern France has uncovered a mass grave where up to 170 Australian soldiers were buried in World War I.
On the night of July 19, 1916 the Australians fought their first battle on the Western Front at the small village of Fromelles.
2/6/08 BBC News: Remains found at WW1 'mass grave'
Archaeologists in France excavating the suspected mass grave of hundreds of British and Australian World War I soldiers have found human remains.
10/6/08 News.com.au: Rising Sun badge proves Australian soldiers' grave site
A RISING Sun badge has provided the first conclusive proof that Australian soldiers are buried in a mass grave in France, the army says.
Archeologists found the badly corroded bronze badge, worn on the collars of Diggers in World War I, at the gravesite at the weekend.
31/5/08 The Age: Grave at Fromelles unearths political minefield
THE unearthing of human remains in the German-dug mass grave in Fromelles may ease the heartbreak of some soldiers' families, but it has sparked a monumental political headache for the Australian and British armies.
Regarding the political minefield article from The Aged, I'm sure any 'problem' will be sorted out amicably.

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