Adelaide, John Francis Hills, 1919.
Octavo, 145 pages.
Flush-cut thin card covers a little rubbed, creased, sunned and marked; canted spine a little chipped and torn with slight loss; a very good copy.
'It is not my intention to be drawn into any newspaper controversy either about what is contained in this book ... or about the notes and appendix matter I have added to it. My friend and collaborator, John P. Fletcher, is at present serving, as a conscientious objector under the English Military Service Act, a term of two years' imprisonment inflicted upon him by a court-martial. On his release any criticisms of this book will receive from us the attention they deserve.' John Francis Hills (1867-1948), Friend [Quaker], teacher and anti-conscriptionist: 'in 1912 Hills and a visiting English Friend, J.P. Fletcher, founded the Australian Freedom League to campaign against compulsory military training. The league quickly extended to other States and at one time claimed 50,000 members. Hills spoke often at public meetings and even paraded in a sandwich board at Victoria Park racecourse. The league was disbanded soon after the outbreak of World War I in 1914. Of his many pamphlets the most powerful probably was "Child Conscription: Our Country's Shame" (1912) which not only condemned military training but, implicitly, war itself. These themes were reiterated in the small book Hills and Fletcher wrote in 1915, "Conscription Under Camouflage", which was not published until 1919' ('Australian Dictionary of Biography').