Charles King Brothers

Charles King Brothers c1916. Image courtesy Australian War Memorial.

Charles King Brothers was born into a family with a long history of public service; his father was a dentist of international renown, his maternal grandfather, Charles McArthur King was a Governor of Norfolk Island and his great great grandfather was Phillip Gidley King, the third Governor of New South Wales.

Charles was born in Orange in 1897, the first of two children born to Ernest Linwood Brothers and his wife Mary Christiana nee King. A sister, Mavis, was born in Sydney in 1899. The family moved to Rangeville in southern Queensland where Ernest practiced dentistry and Charles attended Rangeville State School. As a teenager, Charles served for four years with the Citizens Military Forces, attaining the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.

Following his education Charles worked as a draper. In October 1915 he travelled to Toowoomba, where he enlisted. Sapper Brothers embarked from Sydney with the 6th Field Company Engineers, 5th Reinforcements, aboard HMAT Star of Victoria on 31 March 1916, disembarking in Tel-el-Kebir on 5 May. He served in England and France before being taken on strength with the 5th Field Company Engineers in Belgium on 9 September 1916.

In early February 1917 Charles was hospitalised for 12 days suffering from trench foot. He rejoined his unit on 18 February 1917. On 21 April Charles received several gunshot wounds to the left buttock and right foot. He was admitted to No. 3 Casualty Clearing Station, where he died the following day of his wounds. He was buried in the Grevillers British Cemetery by the Reverend EG Muschamp.

Charles King Brothers is commemorated on panel number 123 on the Roll of Honour at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.

Comments Off on Charles King Brothers

21 April 1917

Comments Off on 21 April 1917

20 April 1917

Comments Off on 20 April 1917

19 April 1917

Chinese Labour Corps bakers in Caestre camp 1917, Lieutenant John Warwick Brooke. Image courtesy Imperial War Museum © IWM (Q 5891).

Comments Off on 19 April 1917

18 April 1917

Comments Off on 18 April 1917

17 April 1917

SS Donegal pre WWI. Image in public domain.

Comments Off on 17 April 1917

16 April 1917

Vladimir Lenin arrives at Petrograd’s Finland train station, 16 April 1917. Image in public domain.

Comments Off on 16 April 1917

15 April 1917

The ruins of the Lagnicourt Church, 1917. Image courtesy Australian War Memorial.

Comments Off on 15 April 1917

14 April 1917

Comments Off on 14 April 1917

13 April 1917

Albert John Oswald (Jack) Parslow c1916. Image courtesy Australian War Memorial.

We struggle and squabble, by faction obsessed, and air multifarious views
On the War-Winning ways (at the poll) that are best, and the merits of Tudor and Hughes.
We’re hotter in conflict than ever before, wild conflict of tongue and of throat;
Cabals beyond number and juntas galore dictate to us how we should vote.
Election turmoil and political broil claim all our attention at home.
What a satire it is on our pitiful brawl and the wordy defiances demagogues bawl
”The Anzacs were first in Bapaume!’

We fight like the devil in sections and wings, in Leagues and in “National Feds.;”
Each morning some brand-new sodality brings with its parcel of eminent “heads.”
They wrangle and battle and spar and “confer,” and candidates damn or commend,
And tell us the foe of this many a year, now he’s ‘verted, must rank as a friend.
In the laborite camp there is ruction and ramp and schism and chaos and foam.
They’re clearing the decks for a heresy hunt in riven Australia. And there, at the front
“The Anzacs were first in Bapaume.’

They jabber for jobs, our political troops, while the others swing stern to their deaths.
Are we Winning the War with our partisan whoops, our tickets, our damned shibboleths?
In flatulent faction, we simmer and seethe, with puerile passions we burn.
While theirs are the laurels that victories wreathe, the palm that achievements shall earn,
Did their thoughts travel back from the battlefield’s wrack, their fancies distractedly roam,
Do you think, from their work, to the pitiful fray of the Ins and Outs in Australia today
When the Anzacs swung into Bapaume?

Will you make of them heroes, these strategists fine, these talkative, tactical souls,
All out – while the others are carrying the line to carry the land – at the polls?
Will you cheer, till you’re hoarse, while the deeds in the field set Englishmen’s pulses astir,
The gentry whose tongues are most likely to yield their owners six hundred a year?
Will your blood grow as hot o’er babble and plot, political catchword or gnome,
Platitudinous platforms and ward bosses’ ‘rings’ as the sentence like this – with the message it brings
“The Anzacs were first in Bapaume?”

They charged through the carnage or crouch in the trench, while far from the shell and the shot
Our bones of contention’s a Treasury Bench; we’re fighting like fiends – and for what?
For Victory? Say, will it win them a mile, the pick of our muscles and thews.
It ostracised Laborites finish in style or Bendigo’s captured by Hughes?
While we wallow in faction and sputter our spite, reinforcements as surely decline;
Not the men who can talk, but the men who can fight will cleave us a way on the Rhine.
We gibber, they act. With facetiousness racked; we rangle and jangle at home.
Breast-forward they go, with one soul and one aim, and theirs is the honor as ours is the shame.
Who bothered about the political game
While the Anzacs were taking Bapaume?

Comments Off on 13 April 1917