Other formats

    TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

The New Zealanders at Gallipoli

The Water Supply

The Water Supply.

Though the scored cliffsides of Gallipoli give indications of a torrential rainfall during winter, water was difficult to obtain even in April and May. Wells were sunk in all likely places and water diviners plied their uncanny calling with some success. The wells, however, did not last long, except the one near No. 2 Outpost. Greek tank steamers brought the bulk of the water from Egypt, and over by Imbros pumped it into water barges, which were towed in page 161 by the picket boats or a tug. By a manual, the water was forced into tanks on the beach, to which day and night came a stream of thirsty men with water bottles. Sometimes the barge would be holed by shellfire and the valuable load lost, or again a leak might turn the precious water brackish. Two quarts a day was often the ration—this had to be used for all purposes. Mostly it was drunk in the form of tea. Any tea left over was not wasted, but used for shaving!
Black and white photograph of the pumping fatigue.

A Pumping Fatigue on the Water Barge.

The men in the front line had great difficulty in getting water as the carrying fatigue was often shot as it dodged up Monash Gully or the track to Walker's Ridge. Whatever the men on the beach got, those in the trenches were always desperately short.

From a hygienic point of view, the sea was the salvation of the men. Everyone near the beach bathed twice a day even at the risk of “stopping one,” while the men from the hills came down whenever the reliefs took over.