National Army Museum, Waiouru, New Zealand : Military History & Army War Museum

The Costly Battle of the Landing

Private Frank Moore from the Sir George Grey Collections, Auckland Libraries

Private Frank Moore from the Sir George Grey Collections, Auckland Libraries

Private Frank Henry Moore (10/456) of the Wellington infantry Battalion was killed in action at Gallipoli on 29 April 1915.

Frank Moore could be termed a local lad. He was originally from Mangaweka and was working as a saw-miller at Hihitahi which is half way between Taihape and Waiouru, at the outbreak of World War One. Frank had completed Territorial service with D Company, 7th Wellington West Regiment before joining up.

Frank enlisted, age 21, on 18 August 1914 and embarked from Wellington on 16 October aboard the Arawa, disembarking at Alexandria, Egypt, on 4 December 1914.

After training at Zeitoun Camp under the strict eye of Lieutenant Colonel William Malone, the men of the Wellington Infantry Battalion left for Lemnos and then landed at Gallipoli, late in the evening of 25 April 1915. The men of the 7th Wellington West Coast along with the 9th Hawkes Bay Company, and the Wellington Machine-Gun Section were all ashore probably by the early hours of 26 April. They took cover in a gully near the beach, and by all accounts it was relatively quiet.

KGV Memorial Plaque of Private Frank Moore

KGV Memorial Plaque of Private Frank Moore

When the day dawned on the 26th, heavy Turkish shrapnel fire started. It stopped at midday due to British Naval guns pounding the hills but Turkish sniping continued throughout the day. Small Turkish patrols would crawl through the scrub and the Kiwis would take pot shots at them, giving cheer if any were hit.

On the 27th, Frank Moore and the rest of the Wellington Battalion would experience their first taste of serious action when they had to clamber up towards Russell’s Top under heavy fire and later carry out a bayonet charge towards the Turkish lines. The Wellington Battalion would lose 25 men on that day, with many more wounded.

On 29 April when the ‘Battle of the Landing’ was effectively over, Turkish snipers were hitting their targets and at some stage during the day, Frank Moore was shot and killed along with a further 22 Wellington men. The first four days of fighting had proved extremely costly for the Anzacs.

Today, Frank Moore is commemorated on the Lone Pine Memorial, Gallopli, Turkey, Panel 76. The National Army Museum holds his KGV Memorial Plaque on display in our Medal Repository.