5th Light Horse Brigade

The 5th Light Horse Brigade was a mounted infantry brigade of the First Australian Imperial Force, formed in Palestine in July 1918 they served in the Middle Eastern theatre of World War I in the Sinai and Palestine Campaign, as part of the Australian Mounted Division.[1][2]

5th Light Horse Brigade
Active1918
Country Australia
 France
AllegianceAustralian Crown
BranchAustralian Army
TypeMounted Infantry
SizeBrigade
Part ofAustralian Mounted Division
EquipmentHorse
EngagementsSinai and Palestine Campaign
Insignia
Unit colour patch
5th Light Horse Brigade colour patch
Middle Eastern data form middle eastern studies web
Middle Eastern Theatre during World War I

Commander

Formation

Battles

Light horse walers
The Australian Light Horse during World War I

See also

References

Citations

  1. ^ a b "5th Light Horse Brigade". diggerhistory. Retrieved 2009-04-19.
  2. ^ Mallett, Ross. "Mounted Troops". unsw.adfa.edu.au. Archived from the original on 25 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-19.
  3. ^ Preston 1921 pp. 258–60, 335
  4. ^ "5th Australian Light Horse Brigade". Australian Light Horse Studies Centre. 24 December 2009. Retrieved 8 January 2015.

Bibliography

  • Preston, Richard Martin (1921). The Desert Mounted Corps: An Account of the Cavalry Operations in Palestine and Syria, 1917–1918. London: Constable. ISBN 9781146758833.

Further reading

  • Perry, Roland (2009). The Australian Light Horse. Hachette Australia. Sydney. ISBN 978 0 7336 2272 4 (hbk)
14th Light Horse Regiment (Australia)

The 14th Light Horse Regiment was a mounted infantry or light horse unit of the Australian Army. The unit takes its lineage from units raised as part of the colonial forces of the state of Queensland in 1860 and served during the Second Boer War and World War I. In 1930 it was amalgamated with the 2nd Light Horse Regiment to become the 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment (Queensland Mounted Infantry), a unit that continues to exist as part of the Australian Army today.

15th Light Horse Regiment (Australia)

The 15th Light Horse Regiment was a mounted infantry regiment of the Australian Army during the First World War. The regiment was raised in Palestine in 1918, from soldiers that had been serving with the Imperial Camel Corps Brigade, and assigned to the 5th Light Horse Brigade. During the war the regiment fought against the forces of the Ottoman Empire, in the Sinai and Palestine Campaign and was awarded fourteen battle honours. During the inter-war years, the regiment was re-raised as a part-time unit based in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales. It was later converted to a motor regiment during the Second World War but was disbanded in 1944 without having been deployed overseas. In the post war period, the regiment was briefly re-formed, before being amalgamated into the 1st/15th Royal New South Wales Lancers in 1956.

2nd Light Horse Brigade

The 2nd Light Horse Brigade was a mounted infantry brigade of the First Australian Imperial Force which served in the Middle Eastern theatre of World War I. The brigade first saw action while serving in the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) during the Dardanelles Campaign in the Battle of Gallipoli. After being withdrawn to Egypt in February 1916 they served in the ANZAC Mounted Division from March 1916 as part of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign until the end of the war.

3rd Light Horse Brigade

The 3rd Light Horse Brigade was a mounted infantry brigade of the First Australian Imperial Force which served in the Middle Eastern theatre of World War I.

The brigade first saw action during the Dardanelles Campaign in the Battle of Gallipoli where they were noted for their charge during the Battle of the Nek. After being withdrawn to Egypt in February 1916 they were involved in the Sinai and Palestine Campaign until the end of the war. They were attached to a number of different formations being part of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps in 1915, the Anzac Mounted Division in March 1916 and the Australian Mounted Division in June 1917 who they remained with until the end of the war.

4th Light Horse Brigade

The 4th Light Horse Brigade was a mounted infantry brigade of the First Australian Imperial Force serving in the Middle Eastern theatre of World War I. The brigade was formed in March 1915 and shipped to Egypt without their horses and was broken up in Egypt in August 1915. Reformed in February 1917, the Brigade was attached to the Imperial Mounted Division of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force and in June 1917 transferred to the Australian Mounted Division, where it served in the Sinai and Palestine Campaign until the end of the war.

ANZAC (acronym)

The ANZAC acronym came from the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, formed in Egypt prior to the Gallipoli Campaign during the First World War. The corps was the higher formation for all Australian and New Zealand soldiers. It then gave its name to ANZAC Cove, on the Gallipoli peninsula, and at first was only used to identify the men who took part in the Gallipoli landings, although it later came to mean "any Australian or New Zealand soldier of the First World War." Both the 'ANZAC' and the 'Anzac' versions of the acronym have been protected by the Commonwealth Government of Australia.The acronym was used during the war by the I ANZAC Corps and the II ANZAC Corps in Egypt and later on the Western Front. Then there was the 1st (ANZAC) Wireless Signal Squadron, which served in the Mesopotamia Campaign. The Australian and New Zealand Mounted Division formed in March 1916 also made use of the acronym. The division's name was abbreviated to the A. & N. Z. Mounted Division, to the ANZAC Mounted Division, and to the Anzac Mounted Division by the Australian official history, and the New Zealand official history.Also serving alongside the ANZAC Mounted Division in the Egyptian Expeditionary Force was the ANZAC Provost Police Corps, the 1st (ANZAC), 3rd (ANZAC), and 4th (ANZAC) Battalions, Imperial Camel Corps Brigade.The acronym was not inclusive. One formation that had troops assigned from both Australia and New Zealand, during the war, and did not use it was the 5th Light Horse Brigade.

Australian Light Horse

Australian Light Horse were mounted troops with characteristics of both cavalry and mounted infantry, who served in the Second Boer War and World War I. During the inter-war years, a number of regiments were raised as part of Australia's part-time military force. These units were gradually mechanised either before or during World War II, although only a small number undertook operational service during the war. A number of Australian light horse units are still in existence today (see below).

Australian Mounted Division

The Australian Mounted Division originally formed as the Imperial Mounted Division in January 1917, was a mounted infantry, light horse and yeomanry division. The division was formed in Egypt, and along with the Anzac Mounted Division formed part of Desert Column, Egyptian Expeditionary Force in World War I. The division was originally made up of the Australian 3rd Light Horse Brigade, (formerly Anzac Mounted Division) the reconstituted 4th Light Horse Brigade, and two British yeomanry brigades; the 5th Mounted Brigade and 6th Mounted Brigade.

Battle of Jisr Benat Yakub

The Battle of Jisr Benat Yakub was fought on 27 September 1918 at the beginning of the pursuit by the Desert Mounted Corps of the retreating remnants of the Yildirim Army Group towards Damascus during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of World War I. After the Battle of Samakh and the Capture of Tiberias, which completed the Egyptian Expeditionary Force's decisive victory in the Battle of Sharon section of the Battle of Megiddo, the Australian Mounted Division attacked and captured a series of rearguard positions. The positions were held by German and Ottoman soldiers of the Tiberias Group at Daughters of Jacob Bridge, an important bridge across the Jordan River, and at fords at El Min and north towards Lake Huleh.

Remnants of the Ottoman Seventh and Eighth Armies were retreating in columns towards Damascus from the Judean Hills via Samakh, the bridge at Jisr Benat Yakub, Kuneitra, and Kaukab, pursued by the Australian Mounted and the 5th Cavalry Divisions. At the same time remnants of the Ottoman Fourth Army were retreating in columns towards Damascus along the Pilgrims' Road (the old hajj road following the even older route of the King's Highway) through Deraa, pursued by the 4th Cavalry Division.

The surviving garrisons from Samakh and Tiberias formed from remnants of the Seventh and Eighth Armies entrenched themselves on the eastern side of the Jordan River to cover the retreat of the main remnants of the Yildirim Army Group. These rearguards were successfully attacked by the Australian Mounted Division during the day, capturing a number of survivors who had not succeeded in withdrawing, to occupy the eastern bank of the Jordan River. The Australian Mounted Division, followed by the 5th Cavalry Division continued their advance towards Damascus later in the day.

Battle of Samakh

The Battle of Samakh was fought on 25 September 1918, during the Battle of Sharon which together with the Battle of Nablus formed the set piece Battle of Megiddo fought from 19 to 25 September 1918, in the last months of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of the First World War. During the cavalry phase of the Battle of Sharon the Desert Mounted Corps commanded by the Australian Lieutenant General Harry Chauvel, captured the Esdraelon Plain (also known as the Jezreel Valley and the Plain of Armageddon) 40–50 miles (64–80 km) behind the front line in the Judean Hills on 20 September, when the 3rd Light Horse Brigade captured Jenin. The 4th Light Horse Brigade, Australian Mounted Division was deployed guarding supply columns, and prisoners, before being ordered to attack and capture Samakh on the shore of the Sea of Gallilee. Here the Ottoman and German garrison had been ordered by the commander of the Yildirim Army Group to fight to the last man.

Samakh, in the centre of a rearguard line stretching from Tiberias through Samakh and on to Deraa was intended to cover the retreat of three Ottoman armies. The rearguard was set up to delay the advance of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) cavalry in the Desert Mounted Corps after the British Empire infantry victories in the Judean Hills at the Battle of Tulkarm, and the Battle of Tabsor during the Battle of Sharon. These and other battles fought during the Battle of Nablus including the Third Transjordan attack, also part of the Battle of Megiddo, forced the retreat of the Ottoman Fourth, the Seventh and the Eighth Armies north towards Damascus.

On 20 September, German General Otto Liman von Sanders, the commander of the Yildirim Army Group, ordered Samakh's German and Ottoman garrison to prepare a strong rearguard defence of the town. By dawn on 25 September, when a regiment and two squadrons of the Australian 4th Light Horse Brigade attacked Samakh, the rearguard was strongly entrenched. The assault, which began with a mounted cavalry charge, ended two hours later after close quarter fighting in the village and the railway station. After fierce fighting with bayonets and swords, from room to room in the railway buildings, the town was captured. This victory, which captured the centre of the rearguard line, concluded the Battle of Sharon section of the Battle of Megiddo and opened the way for the cavalry pursuit to Damascus, which was captured on 1 October. By the time the Armistice of Mudros between the Allies and the Ottoman Empire was signed at the end of October, Aleppo had been captured and fighting was in progress further north.

Battle of Tulkarm

The Battle of Tulkarm took place on 19 September 1918, beginning of the Battle of Sharon, which along with the Battle of Nablus formed the set piece Battle of Megiddo fought between 19 and 25 September in the last months of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of the First World War. During the infantry phase of the Battle of Sharon the British Empire 60th Division, XXI Corps attacked and captured the section of the front line nearest the Mediterranean coast under cover of an intense artillery barrage including a creeping barrage and naval gunfire. This Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) victory over the entrenched Ottoman Eighth Army, composed of German and Ottoman soldiers, began the Final Offensive, ultimately resulting in the destruction of the equivalent of one Ottoman army, the retreat of what remained of two others, and the capture of many thousands of prisoners and many miles of territory from the Judean Hills to the border of modern-day Turkey. After the end of the battle of Megiddo, the Desert Mounted Corps pursued the retreating soldiers to Damascus, six days later. By the time an Armistice of Mudros was signed between the Allies and the Ottoman Empire five weeks later, Aleppo had been captured.

During the Battle of Tulkarm the 60th Division, (XXI Corps) advanced to cut the front line Ottoman trenches. They were supported as they moved forward by artillery fire, which lifted and crept forward while the infantry advanced to capture the Nahr el Faliq. Their advance forced the Ottoman Eighth Army to withdraw, and the continuing attack resulted in the capture of Tulkarm, and the Eighth Army headquarters. The tactic of the infantry attack covered by creeping artillery fire, was so successful that the front line was quickly cut and the way cleared for the British Empire cavalry divisions of Desert Mounted Corps to advance northwards up the Plain of Sharon. The cavalry aimed to capture the Ottoman lines of communication in the rear of the two German and Ottoman armies being attacked in the Judean Hills. By 20 September these cavalry divisions reached the rear, completely outflanked and almost encircled the Ottoman Seventh and Eighth Armies during the Battle of Nazareth, Capture of Afulah and Beisan, Capture of Jenin and Battle of Samakh. Meanwhile, British Empire infantry divisions on the right of the 60th Division advanced to successfully attack the German and Ottoman trench lines along their front line at the Battles of Tabsor and Arara. The Ottoman Seventh Army headquarters at Nablus was subsequently attacked and captured during the Battle of Nablus.

Capture of Jenin

The Capture of Jenin occurred on 20 September 1918, during the Battle of Sharon which together with the Battle of Nablus formed the set piece Battle of Megiddo fought between 19 and 25 September during the last months of the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of the First World War. During the cavalry phase of the Battle of Sharon carried out by the Desert Mounted Corps, the 3rd Light Horse Brigade, Australian Mounted Division attacked and captured the town of Jenin located on the southern edge of the Esdraelon Plain (also known as the Jezreel Valley and the plain of Armageddon) 40–50 miles (64–80 km) behind the front line in the Judean Hills. The Australian light horse captured about 2,000 prisoners, the main supply base and the ordnance depot of the Seventh and the Eighth Armies in and near the town. They also cut the main road from Nablus and a further 6,000 Ottoman Empire and German Empire prisoners, were subsequently captured as they attempted to retreat away from the Judean Hills.

The Egyptian Expeditionary Force (EEF) cavalry had ridden through a gap on the Mediterranean Sea coast, created by the infantry during the Battle of Tulkarm, to capture the two Ottoman armies' main lines of communication and supply north of the Judean Hills, while the infantry battles continued. On 20 September, the Desert Mounted Corps captured Afulah, Beisan and Jenin on the Esdrealon Plain. The next day the headquarters of the Seventh Army at Nablus, and the General Headquarters (GHQ) of the Yilderim Army Group at Nazareth, were both captured, while Haifa was captured two days later. During a subsequent early morning attack on 25 September, a German rearguard was captured during the Battle of Samakh, which ended the Battle of Sharon. During these operations the greater part of one Ottoman army was captured in the Judean Hills and at Jenin. These and other battles fought during the Battle of Megiddo including the Battle of Nablus and Third Transjordan attack, forced the retreating Ottoman Fourth, and remnants of the Seventh and the Eighth Armies, to the eastern side of the Jordan River. As they withdrew northwards towards Damascus they were pursued by the Desert Mounted Corps.

After the infantry established a gap in the Ottoman front line on the coast early on the morning of 19 September, the Australian Mounted Division's 3rd and 4th Light Horse Brigades (less the 5th Light Horse Brigade temporarily detached to the 60th Division) in reserve, followed the 4th Cavalry Division north on the Plain of Sharon and across the Mount Carmel Range, by the Musmus Pass, to Lejjun on the Esdrealon Plain. While the 4th Light Horse Brigade remained to garrison Lejjun and provide various guards for artillery, supplies, and corps headquarters before being ordered to capture Samakh, the 3rd Light Horse Brigade advanced to Jenin, where the 9th and 10th Light Horse captured the town after a brief fire fight. Subsequently, these two regiments captured some 8,000 Ottoman soldiers, who had been attempting to retreat northwards out of the Judean Hills, during the night of 20/21 September. The outnumbered Australian Light Horsemen were reinforced as quickly as possible, and the majority of the prisoners were marched back into holding camps, near Lejjun in the morning. The 3rd Light Horse Brigade remained in the area to garrison Jenin until they advanced to capture Tiberias on 25 September 1918, before participating in the pursuit to Damascus.

Charge at Kaukab

The Charge at Kaukab took place on 30 September 1918 about 10 miles (16 km) south of Damascus during the pursuit by Desert Mounted Corps following the decisive Egyptian Expeditionary Force victory at the Battle of Megiddo and the Battle of Jisr Benat Yakub during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of World War I. As the Australian Mounted Division rode along the main road north, which connects the Galilee with Damascus via Quneitra, units of the division charged a Turkish rearguard position located across the main road on the ridge at Kaukab.

Following the victories at the Battle of Sharon and Battle of Nablus during the Battle of Megiddo, remnants of the Ottoman Seventh and Eighth Armies retreated in columns towards Damascus from the Judean Hills. They left rearguards at Samakh, at Tiberias and at Jisr Benat Yakub, all of which were captured by the Australian Mounted Division. Remnants of the Fourth Army retreating in columns towards Damascus along the Pilgrims' Road through Deraa, were pursued by the 4th Cavalry Division, which attacked a rearguard at Irbid.

German and Ottoman remnants of the Seventh and Eighth Armies which had formed the defeated garrisons of Samakh and Tiberias, after being pushed back again from their next defensive positions at Jisr Benat Yakub, joined part of the defenders of Damascus and entrenched themselves at Kaukab on the high ground on both sides of the main road coming from Jerusalem to Damascus via Nablus and Quneitra. Here the 4th and 12th Light Horse Regiments charged up and onto the ridge capturing part of the rearguard, while the remainder withdrew in disorder as the 5th Light Horse Brigade on the western side outflanked their positions.

Charles Merrett

Colonel Sir Charles Edward Merrett CBE (8 January 1863 – 11 November 1948) was an Australian merchant, agriculturist and political activist.

Merrett was born at South Yarra in Melbourne to civil servant Samuel Headen Merrett and Sarah Ashton, née Baxter. His father died in 1878 and Charles, despite being a graduate from Melbourne Grammar School, was unable to attend university and instead became an office-boy at a merchants' and manufacturer's representation firm in 1880. By 1890 he had risen to become a partner in the business; he would eventually be managing director in 1916. He married Annie Florence Slocombe on 21 April 1891. He joined the St Kilda Rifles in 1880 and transferred to the Victorian Mounted Rifles in 1883, holding the posts of lieutenant and quartermaster (1889) and captain (1892). He later transferred to the Australian Light Horse and was promoted major in 1905; in 1915 he became lieutenant-colonel of the 5th Light Horse Brigade and the oldest serving officer in the Light Horse. Despite his wishes he remained in Australia during World War I and retired from the armed services in 1920 as a colonel.In 1915 Merrett was appointed president of the Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria he would serve a record term of 32 years, retiring in 1947. He was involved in founding the Young Farmers and the Country Women's Association. He was also politically involved, and in 1913 ran for the federal seat of Melbourne Ports for the Liberal Party. His later career tended towards organisational politics but he became disenchanted with the Nationalist Party and instead he and Thomas Ashworth founded the Liberal Union, a breakaway group opposed to Billy Hughes' leadership. Although the Union only operated as a political entity at the 1922 election, when it elected two candidates to the House of Representatives, it continued to endorse Nationalist candidates throughout the 1920s. He would later be involved in the downfall of the Allan-Peacock state government in 1927, forming the short-lived Australian Liberal Party.Merrett served on South Melbourne Council from 1915 to 1937 and was mayor from 1922 to 1923. He was also the chairman of a number of organisations, including the Canned Fruits Export Control Board, the Big Brother Movement, the New Settlers League, the State Employment Council and the Society for the Protection of Animals. In 1929 he was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire, and he was knighted in 1934. He died at Brighton in 1948.

Edwin Tivey

Major General Edwin Tivey, (19 September 1866 – 19 May 1947) was an Australian stockbroker and a senior officer in the Australian Army during the First World War.

George Macarthur-Onslow

Brigadier General George MacLeay Macarthur-Onslow, (2 May 1875 – 12 September 1931) was an Australian grazier and army officer who commanded light horse units during the First World War.

Harold Livingstone Fraser

Harold Livingstone Fraser (21 December 1890 – 1 November 1950) was an Australian aviator born in Rockhampton, Queensland.

Lighthorse

Lighthorse or Light Horse may refer to:

Light cavalry

Calcutta Light Horse, Indian Army reserve unit during the British Raj

Light Horse Regiment, South African Army unit

2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment, Australian Army Regiment

Australian Light Horse, mounted infantry who fought in World War I

1st Light Horse Brigade

2nd Light Horse Brigade

3rd Light Horse Brigade

4th Light Horse Brigade

5th Light Horse Brigade

The Lighthorsemen (film), a 1987 feature film about an Australian Light Horse unit

Lighthorse (American Indian police)

3rd Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment (United States)

South Alberta Light Horse

Henry Lee III, nicknamed "Light Horse Harry"

Horse&Rider, magazine formerly called Light Horse

List of Australian Army brigades

This is a list of the brigades raised by the Australian Army. The list includes brigades that served in World War I, World War II, Vietnam and the present-day brigades.

Expeditionary Forces
Corps
Divisions
Brigades
1st Light Horse Brigade
2nd Light Horse Brigade
3rd Light Horse Brigade
4th Light Horse Brigade
5th Light Horse Brigade
Australian Corps troops
Divisions

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