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28 June 1916

By June 28, 2016No Comments
  • Private Cyral Morahan in East Africa writes to his father, Hugh, in Lords Place. Cyral claims to have travelled more than 28,000kms from Patagonia to enlist. Eager To Enlist
  • The Leader reports that soldiers serving overseas are sending home record amounts of mail; the latest shipment contains almost one million items. Record Mail
  • Heavy fighting continues at Fleury and Hill 321 near Verdun; German troops are repulsed north-west of Thiaumont
  • Italian troops regain half the trenches lost during the Austrian offensive; the Italian cavalry reach Pedescala, north-east of Arsiero
  • The Leader urges readers to Buy a Button on War Chest Button Day. [Henry Budden and Thomas Henley were commissioners of the Australian War Chest]

Buy a button! Buy a button for the soldiers at the war;
A gold ‘un for a century, or silver for a score;
Oh, please to buy a button, Sir, and do not look askance;
‘Twill buy a stick of chocolate for somebody in France.

Buy a button, buy a button or the fund will go to smash;
Mr. Budden’s bought a lorry, and he’s nearly out of cash;
He is blowing up the rhino just as quickly as he can,
So won’t you buy a button to assist, him, Mr, Man?

I have written of Tom Henley in the days gone by; and then
It wasn’t always eulogy, that trickled from my pen;
But I doff my hat to Henley, who has faced the choking sand
To take the boys their puddings in a damned uncomfy land,

Didn’t Tom look well in khaki ‘ere he started on the trip?
But, bedad, he did his duty when he went aboard the ship,
Though he might have stuck to business and have made a tidy cheque
Or he might have stayed in Sydney getting Griffiths in the neck.

Buy a button! Buy a button, and we’ll send a bob to Tom,
Who has chanced the sly torpedo and the aviators’ bomb.
Buy a jolly lot of buttons and we’ll send a cable out;
“We’re selling plenty buttons, Tom, keep splashing it about.”

Buy a button for a soldier who has sucked an empty bowl.
Till his mouth is dry as aches and a curse is in his soul.
At every Orange corner will the War Chest set its traps,
And the fellows who are running it are pretty decent chaps.

When off to Heliopolis a draft has barely gone,
Budden cables: “Send some money, for the last two thousand’s gone;
I hope my friends are all O.K.; please give ’em love for me;
Tell ’em Henley’s riding camels and he can’t sit down to tea.”

The secretary chews a pen and rubs a puzzled head;
He has to get a move on or the joint will soon be dead;
He stares at this, he stares at that, at last he sees a way,
And he writes to all the papers that he’ll have a Button Day,

Buy a button! Buy a button for the jellies, jams and soups
That are packed on Henley’s camels when he goes to see the troops;
Buy a button! Buy a button for the man behind the gun,
For the rowdy boys from Sydney, who will make the Germans run.

Buy a button for the laddie who has lost an arm or leg.
Buy a button! Buy a button! Is there any need to beg
For the sake of our Australia and the Freedom you hold dear,
Buy a Button! Buy a Button! Buy a Button! DO YOU HEAR