|Soldier settlers at Beaufort, Victoria. Photo: PROV|
Bruce was an early supporter of our Lemnos Gallipoli Memorial project, attending the launch of our fundraising effort at the Vicotrian Parliament a few years ago.
|Commemorative visit to Lemnos near Shepparton. Photo Jim Claven|
Bruce Scates and Melanie Oppenheimer, The Last Battle: A History of Soldier Settlement in Australia, 1916-1939, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016.
When Australian soldiers returned from the First World War they were offered the chance to settle on 'land fit for heroes'. Promotional material painted a picture of prosperous farms and contented families, appealing to returned service people and their families hoping for a fresh start.
Yet just 20 years after the inception of these soldier settlement schemes, fewer than half of the settlers remained on their properties.
In this timely book, based on recently uncovered archives, Bruce Scates and Melanie Oppenheimer map out a deeply personal history of the soldiers' struggle to transition from Anzac to farmer and provider. At its foundation lie thousands of individual life stories shaped by imperfect repatriation policies.
The Last Battle examines the environmental challenges, the difficulties presented by the physical and psychological damage many soldiers had sustained during the war, and the vital roles of women and children.
For details of the launch click here.
You can purchase a copy of the book a good bookshops. You can order it on the Book Depository too - follow this link by clicking here.
There is also a good report on soldier settlement across Australia on the ABC, click here.
Re-Launch of Monash University's WW1 Stories On-line Course
This week Monash University will (re)launch their free, online course on the impact and significance of the Great War.
It is based on the digital stories we profiled at the Remembrance Day launch and I hope you find it of interest. To date, the course has attracted around 30,000 learners, making it the largest such course Future Learn has fielded. For details click here
Thanks to Professor Bruce Scates for sharing this information.
Lemnos Gallipoli Commemorative Committee