London, Jarrold & Sons, .
Quarto, [iv], 236 pages with numerous illustrations plus 6 colour plates by Cyrus Cuneo ('being the last work of this famous artist'); there is an 'Appreciation from General Birdwood. 1st Anzac Corps, France. September 19th, 1916' printed on two early pages.
Two-colour quarter cloth and pictorial papered boards a little stained and worn (mainly at the corners); scattered foxing and occasional signs of use (including a few tears); a decent copy - but a unique and valuable artefact.
The front free endpaper is signed by W.R. Birdwood, R.A. Carruthers, C.B.B. White, S.S. Butler, R.G. Chirnside, J.S. Churchill, C.H. Brand, Alec McGrigor and Walter A. [surname not deciphered]. In November 1914 Sir William Birdwood (1865-1951) was appointed commander of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, and was in command of the landing at Anzac Cove on 25 April 1915. A month later, following the death of the divisional commander General William Bridges on 18 May 1915, 'Birdwood temporarily took command of the Australian Imperial Force, but was not formally appointed until 14 September 1916. He had suggested the move and, while admitting his ambition, it must be conceded that, from the standpoint of fairness and military efficiency, this decision was crucial to the future of the AIF which in 1915 had expanded to two divisions and included troops under New Zealand command. Birdwood brought an Australian expert in personnel matters to his headquarters and in September chose Colonel (Sir) Brudenell White from 1st Division Headquarters as chief of staff. Thus began a military partnership which contributed markedly to the development of the AIF' ('Australian Dictionary of Biography'). Besides Birdwood and White (General Sir Cyril Brudenell Bingham White, 1876-1940), the signatories are Brigadier-General Robert Alexander Carruthers (1862-1945), Deputy Adjutant and Quartermaster-General, Anzac Corps; Major-General Stephen Seymour Butler (1880-1964), GSO2 on Birdwood's staff; Captain Robert Gordon Chirnside (1883-1960), ADC to Birdwood; Major John Strange Spencer Churchill (1880-1947), attached to Birdwood's staff (and the younger brother of the more famous Winston); Major-General Charles Henry Brand (1873-1961), Commanding Officer of the 4th Brigade AIF from July 1916 (and the first Australian to receive the DSO for service at Gallipoli); and Captain Alexander Muir McGrigor (died 1963), ADC to Birdwood. We suggest the remaining signature comes from another senior Australian officer in Birdwood's inner circle.