Shell Green Cemetery, Gallipoli

This article is about Shell Green Cemetery, Gallipoli and will look at some of the soldiers buried there. I have also written other articles about Gallipoli and guides to help you research soldiers who served in the British Army during the First World War:

Shell Green Cemetery

Shell Green Cemetery Gallipoli

Shell Green Cemetery Gallipoli is reached via a steep path which runs up from the road near ANZAC Cove. It contains 409 First World War burials, of which 11 are unidentified. All but a handful are graves to men who served with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC). The cemetery was originally two, which were combined after Armistice when graves were brought in from the surrounding battlefields. The cemetery took its name from the frequency the area was shelled by Turkish artillery during the campaign.

A large proportion of the burials are men of the 9th and 11th Battalions, Australian Infantry and the Australian Light Horse. Burials date from the day of the Gallipoli landing, 25 April 1915 with the last burials taking place in mid-December 1915. As you walk up to the cemetery you may come across remnants left over from the campaign. This potsherd is part of an earthenware Supply Reserve Depot jar (often referred to as rum jars) which are found all over the area.Part of a "rum jar" on the walk to Shell Green Cemetery GallipoliBuried in the cemetery is 956 Lance-Corporal Thomas Radford Sage who was killed in action between the 25 and 26 April 1915 while serving with the 8th Battalion Australian Infantry. Due to the confused nature of the fighting, the exact date a soldier died was not always known. Thomas Sage’s service file can be viewed online for free: Thomas Sage Service File. Thomas enlisted on the 27 August 1914, and was from Angaston, South Australia. He was originally buried in Artillery Road West Cemetery, but was reburied at Shell Green Cemetery after the war.Shell Green Cemetery GallipoliSage’s epitaph ‘How can man died better, Than fighting fearful odds’ is from the poem Horatius by Thomas Babington Macaulay. Horatius was a famous Roman warrior who defended the Pons Sublicius bridge, which spanned the Tiber to Rome from the Etruscans. The poem was very known in its day:

Then out spake brave Horatius,
The Captain of the Gate:
To every man upon this earth
Death cometh soon or late.
And how can man die better
Than facing fearful odds,
For the ashes of his fathers,
And the temples of his gods?

Also buried in the cemetery is Private Harold Consort Smith 12th Battalion Australian Infantry who was killed in action on the 20 May 1915. His touching epitaph reads ”Mother is proud of her hero though he was only a private”. Smith enlisted on 20 August 1914, was from Mathinna, Tasmania and a ‘bushman’. He was originally buried in the Artillery Road East Cemetery, but like Sage was reburied after the war. His service file can be viewed online for free: Private Harold Consort Smith.Shell Green Cemetery Gallipoli