Fighting the Kaiser

Fighting the Kaiser, fighting the Kaiser,
Who'll come a-fighting the Kaiser with me?
And we'll drink all his beer, and eat up all his sausages,
Who'll come a fighting the Kaiser with me!

This popular parody of Waltzing Matilda is not only a call to arms, but an expression of the Australian attitude to the First World War. Over a thousand volunteers with connections to Coburg answered that call and went 'a-fighting the Kaiser'. Of those, about 200 died.

When Britain declared war on Germany on 4 August 1914, it was inevitable that Australia would follow. Recruitment began on 10 August and by 14 August, Coburg had held its first patriotic meeting. Among the 'living stream' of volunteers that poured into Victoria Barracks and local drill halls were a number of Coburg volunteers.

This blog aims to tell the stories of those volunteers and explore the impact of war on the Town of Coburg during the war years and immediately afterwards.

Please consider sharing your connection to Coburg during the First World War on this blog.

The image to the right is by artist Norman Lindsay, c. 1915-1918. Image courtesy of State Library of Victoria.

Loyal Australia. Officers of the 3rd Infantry Battalion, Egypt, 1916. Image courtesy AWM. Image P03788.001.

Stories | coburg | Brunswick

Coburg High School Magazine, The Scribe, Volume 1, number 1, August 1916.

Letter from Peter Clark, father of Pte. Victor Clark, 15th Infantry Battalion, missing in action, 8 August 1915, Lone Pine.

Memorial Avenue of Trees, Lake Reserve, Coburg. Image courtesy of Bruce and Sue Garrett.

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