Proud Race

Deep In The Trenches (Primary School Stories)

Selected stories selected from Deep In The Trenches that are Primary School Friendly.


This section contains images of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including servicemen and women and community members, who are now deceased.

This may cause distress to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander family and community members, including students and staff.

Leslie Locke

Included in their number were some of the first to enlist in 1914. Members of the family fought at Gallipoli, the Somme and Flanders and in Palestine and Egypt – in infantry battalions, tunnelling companies, veterinary sections, camel corps and light horse regiments. What is sad is the fact that the constitution of their country discriminated against Aboriginal people on grounds of race and that regulations, not always uniformly applied, prohibited men not substantially of European origin from serving in the AIF.

Miller Mack

Miller Mack was born at Point McLeay in 1894, his parents were John Mack and Margaret 'Pinkie' Mack (nee Karpany)[1]. He worked as a labourer prior to enlisting at Adelaide on 23 August 1916.

Richard Martin

Richard was born on Stradbroke Island in Queensland and had no known previous service.
On 9 May 1915 Richard joined the 15th Battalion at Gallipoli and, apart from time spent hospitalised on ships or on the nearby island of Lemnos, he remained on the peninsula until the campaign ended in the freezing winter conditions of December.

Charles Mene

Charles Mene was born on Mabuiag Island on 21st January 1915. His father was a pearl diver and supplemented his income from the sale of garden produce. Charles could not see his future on Mabuiag Island so he moved to Thursday Island and worked casual jobs.

Helena Murphy

She is a living exemplar of triumph over adversity. The odds were stacked against her when she was born in 1922 in Western Australia. A bright, motivated teenager, she tried to join the air force and was told Aboriginal women were not accepted. She tried to join the land army and got rejected. And until 1954, for the first three decades of her life, she and other Aborigines were forced by curfew laws to leave Perth's city limits after dark. So she -- with Jack and Bill Poland and their non-Aboriginal army comrade Geoff Harcus -- decided to restore fun by setting up a club run by Aboriginal people, but open to white people by invitation.