Australian and New Zealand volunteers were already in Serbia, treating wounded Serbian soldiers and fighting a typhus epidemic, before the ANZACs landed at Gallipoli in 1915. The Gallipoli Campaign sealed Serbia’s fate, however, as Germany, Austria-Hungary and Bulgaria moved to secure a land supply corridor to Turkey through Serbia.
Australians and New Zealanders accompanied the Serbian Army on a deadly retreat over wintry mountains to the Adriatic coast. When the fighting shifted to the Salonika or ‘Macedonian’ Front, many served there with the British Army, the Royal Flying Corps, two AIF units and six Royal Australian Navy destroyers in the Adriatic and Aegean Seas. Some died in action, others from disease.
Several hundred doctors, nurses and orderlies treated the wounded and sick in an Australian-led volunteer hospital and in British and New Zealand Army hospitals. The author Miles Franklin was a medical orderly supporting the Serbian Army; her little-known memoir is quoted extensively in this book.
Fifteen hundred Australians and New Zealanders served on this little known yet crucial battlefront. Now for the first time we have an engaging and comprehensive account of what they experienced and achieved in the Great War.