The impact of World War One on Australia’s economy was significant. At that time, the majority of exports from Australia were wool, wheat and minerals. Exporters were deprived of shipping services and they found it difficult to receive payments for their goods.

For Australia, the World War One remains the costliest conflict in terms of deaths and casualties. From a population of fewer than five million, 416,809 men enlisted, of whom more than 60,000 were killed and 156,000 were wounded, gassed, or taken prisoner. Another 6000 veterans died by the 1930s due to war related injuries and suicide.

During World War One, the ships and men of the Royal Australian Navy played an integral part and served in all operational areas the Australian Fleet – a battle cruiser, six light cruisers, six destroyers, two submarines and numerous support and ancillary craft. The Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force carried in HMAS Berrima and supported by units of the Australian Fleet captured German New Guinea colonies. This is the only national joint warfare operation to date.

Please read the book by clicking on the link Parramatta Naval Officers.

Neera Sahni, Research Services Leader, Parramatta Heritage Centre, 2019