‘Emden’s Last Battle’ by Claus Bergen [1885-1964].Source 1914: Two sides of the EMDEN-SYDNEY fight in Art [II]. by Horatio J. Kookaburra
B&W Photograph ‘Unveiling the Emden Gun: Captain Glossop adressing the crowd.’
100 years ago, today, Australia’s 1st Naval victory was commemorated.
On Friday 21st December, 1917, SMS Emden’s gun was unveiled at Hyde Park, Sydney. The event was attended by thousands. The Sydney Morning Herald reported “The scene was exceedingly picturesque, with the brilliant sunshine and the gay colours which flew above the enclosure, where many leading citizens gathered.”
After leaving SMS Emden ‘wrecked and done for’ in 1914, HMAS Sydney was involved in some interesting engagements whilst serving with the British North Sea fleet.
Emden’s survivors were sent (along with other German ‘enemy aliens’) to internment camps for the duration of the war.
Holsworthy Internment Camp, c.1915. Dubotzki collection, Germany
Children’s toys and model Fokker ‘Eindecker’, made by internees in 1916 and 1917, Trial Bay Gaol collection. Photograph by Stephen Thompson
With recruitment falling in 1917, Hughes called for a 2nd plebiscite on conscription. This campaign was just as devisive as the 1916 campaign. On December 20th the nation voted. The answer was; No, again.
We were saddened to hear of the passing of George Franki. George was an enthusiastic researcher and a valued supporter of Mosman 1914- 1918: Doing Our Bit.