At Sea, Printed by Walter Wade for the Expeditionary Force, October 1914.
A broadside printed on paper (visible image size 540 × 400 mm), comprising the pictorial masthead, 6 columns of text and 2 small illustrations.
The broadside, matted and behind glass in a period-style wooden frame (external dimensions 735 × 585 mm), is a little creased, tanned, cockled and tidemarked, with a short closed tear to the top margin; overall in very good condition.
HMAT A19 'Afric' departed Sydney on 18 October 1914, and left Albany with the first convoy on 1 November. This first issue, on linen, is undated, but our research has unearthed the fact that the second issue, on paper, came out on 20 October, thus making it the earliest Australian troopship journal of the war. In form, if not in content, it is certainly the most ambitious. It clearly struck a chord, as the 'Last Marine Edition' of 30 November appears to be the 26th number. Four of them were printed on linen (the other three being Numbers 10, 16 and 25, dated 29 October, 7 November and 28 November respectively). All of them, whether on linen or paper, must be considered rare. The printer-cum-editor, 196 Private Walter Wade, was an Irish-born journalist who enlisted in the 1st Battalion on 4 September 1914. His enthusiasm lasted for about three months until 12 December, when, as his service record succinctly puts it, he 'Deserted at Mena Camp, Egypt'. The archived paperwork relating to his court martial 'in absentia' is entertaining reading - you couldn't make it up ... Not in Dornbusch; not in Fielding and O'Neill.