WWII Aust & USA in Far North Queensland Australia ~

Discussion in 'Australian' started by Stuart SS, Jul 7, 2013.

  1. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Hey Blokes ~

    I had a suggestion from Dave B in Brisbane regarding bottles in the camp sites I work ~ As I said I find HEAPS of smashed beer bottles and masses of broken glass but intact bottles are a rare find ~

    But here a very small random sample of some of my finds the last six months ~


    The Officer's pips were a coup ~ also found with an Officer's ornamented safety razor ~

    Also the ultimate find are the Rising Suns ~ This one is a collar unit.

    The fuel oil drum stops are not all that common either ~ labelled D/I\D and inside ; 1941 (found only yesterday) ~ makes tow good examples. 1941 & 1942

    Two intact bottles

    The button below the pips turned out to be a rare find ~ it is a cap button from a English Officers cap~ HR 549 button~ perhaps trophied by a Digger in Nth Africa ?

    I could dig the brass buckles I can dig all day ~ as I just luv them ! My collection is up to <80> now !

    The brass rod : what a quandary ~ I kept finding them and had NO idea ~ Until I was researching Lee Enfields and found quite accidently~

    Turns out they are the barrel cleaning drop weights !

    And the kangaroo~ Trench art ~ I recently found on the 2 /32 site, a cut downRising sun ~ a failed attempt at trench art , as it was quite straight cut laterally !

    Stuart SS
  2. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Been playing around with a "new" cleaning chemical by POR15

    The results thus far are mixed from amazing to Hmm!

    Will report as results come in ~

    AIF military button which was retrieved from a 1 metre hole under (fresh) dam waters for < 60 years>

    Great result~ in fact the snap does not do it rue justice ~


    This button was actually a struggle to even clearly read the print !

    These coins I had written off ~ they were totally encrusted or blackened ~


    AND best of all I find the 2 cent coins ` 1966 & 1968 ~ with no SD signature!

    I am now getting real Ballsy as I have one of my Rising Suns and more valuable coins in the soak ~

  3. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    OH BTW ~ we think we have worked out what the mystery "knob" is !


    It is part of a range finder ~ be it in a tank or a tripod for mortar or artillery ~


    I also found a broken round piece and the centre has a mica piece and i suspect that it may ~ be part of the sight mechanism (??)


    Lower right ~
    dbf likes this.
  4. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Had an eventful week this week gone ~

  5. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

  6. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    So Sunday 4th ~

    I was not planning to go out today ! But as I got through the jobs I needed to do I started looking at the clock ~ So decided to go out for a few hours ~

    I was not even sure where I would go ~ M and I discussed the Issue and I decided I would go to a WWII site that I had worked over several times earlier ~

    I was not overly confident but I figured it might be worth another look ~

    So I headed off quite late ~ and it was 14.15 hrs before I even pulled up and rigged up ~ Additionally I promised Merete I would leave site by 16.30 ~

    So I headed out ~ A lot of iron echos but nothing at all but a few scraps, a live 303 blanks~ and heaps of tent pull rings ~ yawn!!

    But I did find an intact knife ~ which M has been " asking" for for yonks~ So like they say ~ be careful what you ask for !

    Then I headed into an area I have previously found several coins ~ and Wham mo ! A honey hole ~ Two square metres of my own Fun Park ~

    Woo Hoo ~

    First razor head ~ and I figured the handle, had to be there and sure enough! ~ Then a rifle strap buckle ~ cool ~ match the one I already have !

    Then a nice tidy tunic AMF button ~ then another buckle ~ plus a RISING SUN ! YOU &^^%& &*%&*!!

    But then ~ a 1944 penny ~ but when I was ready to move on ~ another one ~ 1942 Penny ~

    It all just kept coming ~ and better still the bottom has not been reached IMO ~ Theres still more fun in this park ~

    Because this is a dry environment site ~ the razor has excellent uncorrupted imprint; “Empire Razor – Reg Design; 2054” and the Rising Sun is in beautiful shape !

    Tunic AMF button



    Woww !!! ~ what a fantastic 1 1/2 hours considering that it started out so slow !!!
    dbf likes this.
  7. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Nice finds, thanks for sharing
  8. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Just a few finds of the last month ~
















    The copper plate is stamped ~ G.C. Field II 1940

  9. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    Looks like you have had a busy month - is that a part of a bomb release mechanism I see further up (with illustration from a book)?
  10. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Hi Dave

    Yes it is called a Bomb Shackle ~ I endeavoured to find the other half but it was not to be ~ the other half may well woudl have had an ID tag which would tell us exactly what plane ti was off ~ Around here that could have been anything from a B17 to a P40, P38, P39 to a Boomerang ~


    (pages 95- 102)


    Yesterday I went out again and found yet another interesting ~ very ~ collectible ~ in a trash dump ~under water ~​


    Appreciate it if some one can tell me what the 'witcherty grub' cartridge is back up the page ~

    ( ​
  11. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Well ~ A big 24 hours ~

    Friday I decided I would arrange to knock off work early at 11.30 hrs.

    I headed home to touch base with Ms M before heading out for a few hours ~ But this time a change of target ! I decided to revisit the 2 / 7th cavalry site ~ where I found the mortar shells back in April (?)

    The water level has dropped dramatically and fresh ground was available ~

    I hooked in and this site is renowned for mixing new with old targets ~ and again was typical of that ~ But I soon was forced to higher waters as the drop off under water was dramatic ! But in doing so I found the site trash mound ~ as can be seen in the video below ~

    But I picked up a nice Mills Mk I type 36 grenade base plug ~ I spent several hours on the site overall~ including some 15 minutes chatting with several young future MD advocates who wandered over form their parents campsite to ask "Have you found anything!"

    And the conversation ended with the inevitable question ~ " Have you found any guns !? " ( Actually there was a US 1911 automatic pistol found by one of the blokes at work, some years ago!)

    Eventually I headed off to more recent territory ~ Not a huge day but some familiar scores and more ~





    Service Australian Army

    Service Number QX10710

    Date of Birth 25 Mar 1920

    Place of Birth MARYBOROUGH, QLD

    Date of Enlistment 6 Jul 1940

    Locality on Enlistment BAUPLE, QLD

    Place of Enlistment MARYBOROUGH, QLD

    Next of Kin WALDOCK, D

    Date of Discharge 7 Aug 1945

    Rank Sergeant

    Posting at Discharge 2/25 Battalion

    WW2 Honours and Gallantry None for display

    Prisoner of War Yes

    2/25th Battalion

    The 2/25th Battalion was formally raised in Brisbane on 1 July 1940. Recruited in Queensland, it began assembling at Grovely Camp on 15 July, and subsequently trained at Grovely (15 July-15 October) and around Darwin (23 October 1940-1 February 1941).

    It returned to Brisbane to complete its preparations for overseas service, and embarked at Sydney on 7 April 1941.

    On 3 May 1941, the 2/25th landed in Egypt and moved out into the desert to join the 25th Brigade of the 7th Australian Division that was manning defences along the Egypt-Libya frontier against an expected German attack.

    The 2/25th occupied positions at Mersa Matruh throughout much of April and May 1941, before returning to Palestine in preparation for its first offensive operation - the invasion of Syria and Lebanon, which began on 8 June.

    The 2/25th initially constituted the 25th Brigade’s reserve for its drive into eastern Lebanon, and its companies were widely scattered. Reunited, the battalion fought its only major battle of the campaign at the inland town of Merdjayoun on 19 June.

    Given inadequate time to prepare, and confronted by Vichy French tanks, the 2/25th failed to capture Merdjayoun, which had previously been occupied by Australian forces but lost to a counter offensive. The battalion suffered heavy casualties, including over 50 men taken prisoner.

    On 25 June the 2/25th was temporarily placed under the command of the 21st Brigade to secure a route from the coast to the inland town of Beit ed Dine against the possibility of a Vichy French counter attack. It was still thus engaged when the armistice came into effect on 12 July, and remained in Lebanon as part of the Allied garrison until 13 January 1942.

    After sailing from Egypt on 9 February 1942, the 2/25th disembarked in Adelaide on 10 March. It trained in Australia until August and on 9 September arrived in Port Moresby to reinforce the battered Australian units on the Kokoda Trail.

    Joining the fray at Ioribaiwa on 15 September, the battalion participated in the last Australian withdrawal on the trail - to Imita Ridge. It subsequently participated in the advance that followed the Japanese withdrawal, fighting major battles near Templeton’s Crossing (13-21 October) and at Gorari (7-11 November).

    The 2/25th was briefly involved in the operations at Gona between 23 November and 4 December, before returning to Port Moresby by air on 13 December and eventually sailing back to Australia in early January 1943.

    The 2/25th returned to Port Moresby on 22 July in preparation for the 25th Brigade’s next operation - the advance on the Japanese base at Lae, in New Guinea.

    The brigade flew into Nadzab on 7 September, commenced its advance on the 11th and Lae was in its hands by the 16th - the 2/25th was the first battalion to enter the town.

    On 29 September the 2/25th was flown from Nadzab to Kaipit and spent the rest of the year principally engaged in patrol actions in the Ramu Valley and the foothills of the Finisterre Range. The battalion returned to Australia on 16 February 1944.

    Like most of the AIF battalions, the 2/25th spent over a year training in Australia prior to its final operation of the war. It departed Australia on 2 June 1945 and landed at Balikpapan in Borneo on 2 July.

    The 2/25th’s operations were concentrated around the Milford Highway, the site of the most determined Japanese resistence at Balikpapan. It was still involved in active operations when the war ended on 15 August.

    Drafts of long-service personnel began returning home from October, and what was left of the battalion disembarked in Brisbane on 4 February 1946.

    It disbanded there on 7 March 1946.



    I figured I would head over to the Fun park for a few hours ~ but it was a late start at < 14.30 hrs> ~ The scores were a tad short but the 1924 King George V , the tunic button and the buckle saved the day some what ~

  12. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Ironic eh ~ Seesm we are having a Mills grenade outing Frid and Sat as in the second outing the innocuous little screw is in fact a Top screw for a Mills Type 36 !




    And thanls to Eljay @ Dirt Fishing for researching the following ~

    WALDOCK—NICHOLS.—The engagement is announced of Sgt. Joan Nichols (W.A.A.F.), second Daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Nichols, 228 Ellena St., Maryborough. to Sgt. Bevan Waldock (A.I.F. returned), only Son of Mr. and Mrs. D Waldock, Bauple.

    20 May 1947
    WALDOCK.— At Lady Chelmsford Hospital, Bundaberg, on the 10th May to Mr. and Mrs. Bevan Waldock (nee Joan Nichols), a Son (David John).

    Notes from Ancestry.com

    Bevan Claude WALDOCK was born on 25 Mar 1922 in Maryborough, Queensland, Australia. He died on 28 Jan 2001 in Bundaberg, Queensland, Australia. He married Joan Nichols on 24 Oct 1945.

    Ironically one of the War Relics blokes found a print copy from the same item in the (Brisbane) courier Mail of the same time 1945 !
  13. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    I have a resolve to the Waldock issue !

    I looked them up and there are heaps of them around Rocky , Gympie etc ~ but based on the fact that WC Waldock died in Bundaberg in 2001 ~

    I figured the only Waldock close by would be related ~ And sure enough I got it right ~ his Son ~

    “Allan” said that in tracing his family tree he was quite amazed as to the number of same name peeps in the region but not related !

    Allan was totally stoked when I announced I had found his Dad’s ID tag ~ amazed in fact ~ and excited when I offered to simply mail it to him !

    And my request was that I simply asked as to why he was listed as a POW `

    He was serving in Palestine ~ and “they" were hiding behind a stone wall ~ and several Vichy tanks went past and they believed they were safe until Vichy troops leapt over the same wall and caught them out ~ He spent some time in a POW camp under the French ~ “

    So they made them tough then as he returned to Australia and Tinaroo before training and serving in almost all the Australian commitment campaigns including Kokoda and right up to Borneo and Balikpapan, Borneo ~ two weeks before the war ended ~
  14. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    Well done Stuart - the family must have been happy to have this part of their Dad's life found & returned to them.

    Interesting on the POW side of things, I don't think I have seen a similar case where the person was only a POW for a short time during the war.

    The vast majority were POWs until the end of hostilities in whichever side of the world they were captured. The only ones I have seen who returned to Australia early were the ones released under humanitarian grounds by the Germans during prisoner exchanges.

    I suppose there would have been a small number of times our blokes became POWs but were then freed again when Allied troops over-ran the area where they were being held.
  15. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member


    i agree that would have been the scenario and I was perplexed for the same reason `But the Aussies played a substantial role in the victory ov erhte the Vichy presence ~ including the Aust 2/25 Batt, relevant to this discussion (?)

    "Prisoners taken by the Vichy French forces were returned as well." Refer below ~ answers that question eh !

    Syria–Lebanon Campaign - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Again a great education for me as I knew very ~ well nothing of the Australian campaign in the WWII Middle east ~ ironically there is an Aussie and Degaulle connection right there ~

    And there must have been some Aust diggers were familair with the region after he previous stouch with the Turks (?)
  16. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

  17. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Headed out in the afternoon to check out the Fun Park ~ and sure enough the water has dropped again ~

    Spent several hours paddling with a very mxed result but some gems for sure ~

    Found a target firing range ( under water again) ~ lots of bullet heads ~ so the were firing south ~ and not necessarily north from the spot I found the mortar rounds in March ~

    The belt buckle is a ripper and I found it right on the water line as I headed home ~ so water wading is no guarantee that all relics will be stripped away !

    Another ( excellent) Lee Enfield barrel drop weight

    Standard service buttons

    Mystery brass tapered bolt ???? Suggestions as it looks a purpose piece ~

    1/2 penny 1943

    Penny ( excellent ) 1943

    Five cent -1976

    Tunic AMF button ( excellent)

    A Halco ( Vintage ) fish lure ~

    One sample impacted bullet head



    The Halco has been that long the barbed hooks have rusted away ~ I recall these when I was a kid !!

  18. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Well ~ we were supposed to be heading out today, Sunday with a team ~ four of us.

    Target uncertain as I have not dealt with a convention !!

    First "Ed" decided in wisdom that perhaps his weekend would be best spent wit the family as it is a long weekend with family in presence!

    Then we agreed to meet up at Tinaroo Black Gully ~ And it was a mad house ~ weekend warriors and boats , jet skies!

    Paul ( Atherton ) was up for heading to the back of Tinaroo and a WWII camp site which was a Artillery unit ~ but after soem discussion it was decided that that site was a bigger challenge than a few hours on a Sunday afternoon ~

    So it was down to two metal Detectors ~ and Black Gully and the 2/7th Cavalry in view of water levels still dropping ~


    I headed into the water not far from the boat ramp as I know this was a work shop area for the armoured vehicles ~

    I was accosted by a tall attractive lady who kept me talking for ages ~ and she was totally bemused by the tales of the WWII camps despite her being a local ~

    Paul and Paul Corp gave me grief for chatting up the "Yummy Mummy" instead of getting on with the hunt !

    Paul (A) then announced that they had found a ripper glass piece in the first trash heap some 20 metres form me, along the water line ~ It was clear bottle that had the top 1/3 cut off and had been perfectly smoothed to form a piece of art work in the shape of a glass funnel ~

    I decided to cut to the chase and headed for "my mortar round site" ~


    Shadowed by P&P Co armed with a single Garret 250

    The finds were few and far between..

    I scored a nice fuel drum bung.. probably the best I have to date. several buttons including an Officer's cap AMF button ~ smallest I have seen but Paul (Cairns) put me straight on that one.

    A couple of mystery items including the brass ring with the triangular mahining.. looks purpose made to me ~


  19. Stuart SS

    Stuart SS Well-Known Member

    Two of us have been planning a Bush mountain excursion for several weeks now and yesterday, Saturday it finally unfolded as planned.

    Paul and I met up at 07.00 am at his place and transferred the gear to his Ute.

    Once the tarmac roads ended the roads are rough, dusty and corrugated and seemingly ever decreasing in width ~ but a pleasant drive through bush country! Took about an hour to arrive where we figured the WWII training site was.


    The country side has sporadically been gutted by brush fires. This we were fully aware of and figured this was the ideal time to get onto this site as the under growth was 97% eliminated completely, thus allowing very little to escape our visible and MD search.

    With our first stop we were both quietly concerned that this outing was far too vague and our Mud map directions lacked any degree of compass precision. We scanned the immediate topography looking for any obvious sign of military or even human presence! There was NONE!

    So we decided to do a walk around first and headed in different direction. I headed across dry river bed onto what I considered a high ground which appeared to a degree to be levelled ~ as much as could be as the ground is heavily permeated with rocks and layers ~ The topography is very hilly !


    Plus coupled with the scorched earth even looks like a recent battle field!

    The first height I scaled onto even looked like it had been partially cleared of rocks and showed potential for either a camp site which is/ was my priority or even a Gun position/ redoubt!

    Almost immediately I started finding these canisters’ ~ The first was a steel case and very obviously imploded ~


    Paul scrambled over the river bed and onto the higher ground where I was. And the finds started to come think and fast ~


    BUT ~ the issue was ~ is this a gun position or a target area? The canisters which are still packed but have gone inert as the fire had seemingly not ignited them ~

    By the end of the morning when the temperature started to soar despite the gusting southerly wind, we had seen dozens of what we assume are propellant charge canisters littered the entire area that we covered !

    But who knows how many did actually explode during the fire ~


    Then we came across this little gem! (Obviously still intact but again survived the recent fires ~)



    We soon tended to scatter to cover more ground ~ Paul found a number of disarmed shells ~ Seems the military of the day were smart enough to at least check the area and disarm most before discarding them ~



    After a short break we headed back the high ground ~ this time intent on heading up the extreme high ground and a high hill ~ this area was covered in Shrapnel but as we got higher the mortar tail fins dwindled in numbers. The full canisters increased in number!

    But first we MD the flat area along the river bed which looked like it could have been a modest tent/ camp site ! But when I dug a high echo target I believe I found a large calibre shell case ~ intact and standing vertically in the sandy soil.

    So I left that well enough alone!~ Additionally there numerous iron echoes which certainly suggested ~ no camp site here ~

    (Some one might like to elaborate on these things as they were still packed, but many were fractured or broken open and in severely burnt timber they are obviously inert!)

    As we ascended the hill to about 7/8 I found the remains of a large aircraft bomb and the remains of the contact fuse ~

    Ironically at the highest point we reached there was an old (19th century) mine scratched into the side of the high ~ Boy they were tough Barstards in the old days ~


    This entire region is permeated with 100s of mines and the Herberton area is renowned for the pioneering history of mining as well as WWII history!

    So then we descended the extreme high ground which had very obviously been a target range for high calibre shells and aircraft bombing ~ we went slightly deviated from our ascension path ~


    And we were rewarded with even more finds ~ these were fully disarmed so were ‘keepers’.

    Paul also found this on his earlier excursion, the intact one is disarmed but I was not sure about the primer head! Appreciate anyone’s expertise on this one as it would be a cracker souvenir!



    The other two laying in the small gully wash, one is missing the main charge but again I have reservations about the second~

    But by 12.30 despite the fluctuating breeze it was getting very hot ~ so we called it a day and headed home ~

    But we are going back next weekend to endeavour to find the firing position proper and the camp site ~ PLUS Paul reported in the later stages he found a very strong MD signal on a number of rocks in a side wash creek bed ! I want to have a look at that too ~


    As I may have said, we have it all~ Pioneering ~ Mines and silver, Gold and copper plus WWII and contemporary !!
  20. DaveB

    DaveB Very Senior Member

    Stuart - if it's OK with you I will ask a couple of people that know about such things what exactly we are looking at.

    I will mention the Herberton area but I don't think much further detail will be required. Does the ozatwar site shed any light on who was most likely training in that area?



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