Elena Govor

 

NATIVES OF RUSSIA IN THE RANKS OF THE AUSTRALIAN ARMY IN THE GALLIPOLI BATTLE

Over 150 natives of Russia participated in the Gallipoli battle in the ranks of the Australian army. Amongst them there were representatives of many nationalities of the Russian empire Russians (see below), Belorussians (Usten Glavasky, Andrew Jabinsky, Paul Zenewich, ), Ukrainians (Theofil Volkofsky, Nickefor Domilovsky, Marian Pshevolodskey, Joseph Rudezky), Poles (Alfred Jan Markowicz, Joseph Brandebura, Boleslav Boryss), Jews (Eliazar Margolin, Nathan Watchman, Samuel Bortzell, Wolfe Hoffman, Schija Fels), Finns (Alexander Hiltunen, Antti Kujala (alias Thomas Lind),  Paul Falck), natives of Baltic region of Russia, amongst them Estonians (Roman Ilupmagi, William Ambrosen), Letts (Edward Abelscaln, Mahrtin Antin (alias Fritz Lepin), Germans (Dedrich Rozenfeld, Rudolf Danberg), were also Osetinians (Thomas Habaeff, Coultschouk Azieff). There were also some people of other nationalities born in Russia - a Frenchman Edgar Gamson, Englishmen George Ball, Francis Dyson, Oscar Gambrill, Kennet McCleland.

Russians had come to Australia from all ends of the Russian Empire - mechanic George Vasileff from Vladivostok, carpenter Ivan Volkoff from Viatskaya province, mashinist Ivan Kozakoff from Moscow, workers Gregory Smagin from Yeniseisk, Jakow Petroff from the Bishkek area in Central Asia, Vladimir Lopaten from the Smolensk area, Alexis Kazakoff from the Kazan area. Amongst them there were many seamen and stokers - Theodor Vasileff from New Kalishi, Nikolas Sharoff from Vladivostok, Alexander Popoff from Vologda, Albert Frosts from Odessa, Alexander Karelin, son of a high rank official from St. Petersburg, Vlas Kozakovshonek from Riga, George Kamishansky from Kerch, Ivan (John) Ivanoff from Libava. There were people of intelligent occupations amongst them - former reporters Peter Chivrin, a native of Sakhalin, and Nikolas Fedorovich from Odessa, botanik Jakob Serennikoff from Melitopol, engineers George Plotnikoff from Ekaterinburg, Ivan (Jan) Korenew from Odoev near Tula, Nikolas Romanovsky from Achinsk near Yeniseisk and his fellow countryman a veterinary Parfeny Grehoff.

Especially numerous natives of Russia were in the 9th, 15th and 26th  infantry battalions formed in Queensland, in the 10th South Australian battalion, in the 13th battalion of in New South Wales, and in the 16th West Australian battalion. However, almost in every battalion at Gallipoli there was at least one Russian. Some people also served in artillery, cavalry and medical units. Frequently they, especially Russians, enlisted by groups, or, having made friends in camp, were sent to serve in the same unit. For example,there were five Russian men from Brisbane - Peter Chivrin, Nickefor Domilovsky, Nikolas Fedorovich, Nikolas Korotkoff and Nikolas Romanovsky in the 5th reinforcement of 9th battalion; four Russian men served in 6th reinforcement of 15th battalion - Lopaten, Grehoff, Smagin, Volkoff; an especially big group of Russians was in the 26th battallion, mainly from Rockhampton - Osetinians Azieff and Habaeff, Byelorussian Jabinsky, Ukrainians Noweetsky, Loosgie and Rudezky, Russians Vasileff and Plotnikoff. There were many natives of Russia, mostly Balts in the 16th West Australian battalion, commanded by Eleazar Margolin, native of Belgorod.

Natives of Russia participated in the first landing on the Gallipoli coast on the 25th of April 1915. There were John Amolin, Julajs Beern, Schija Fels, Alexander Hiltunen, Eleazar Margolin, Alfred Markowicz, Alexander Popoff, Marian Pshevolodskey, Edward Watson. Many of them were soon wounded. Generally, losses amongst Russians, as well as in the whole army, were heavy. During the campaign more than a half from them were wounded or put out of action by dysentery, rheumatism, influenza and other infectious illnesses.

Some Russian-born soldiers stayed on the Gallipoli shores forever - John Amolin and Vlas Kozakovshonek from Riga, a Jew Abraham Leven (alias David Conroy), a Finn from Vyborg Antti Kujala, Marian Pshevolodskey from Ukraine and Ivan Volkoff from Viatka province.

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