Robert Sangster ADAM

ADAM, Robert Sangster

Service Number: 773
Enlisted: 29 August 1914, Morphettville, South Australia
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 50th Infantry Battalion
Born: Glasgow, Scotland, 1890
Home Town: Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Steward
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World War 1 Service

29 Aug 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Morphettville, South Australia
29 Aug 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
20 Oct 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 10th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Ascanius, Adelaide
20 Oct 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 10th Infantry Battalion, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
2 Mar 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 10th Infantry Battalion, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
15 May 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Lance Corporal, SN 773, 10th Infantry Battalion, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
26 Feb 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Lance Corporal, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion
1 Mar 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Corporal, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion
12 Aug 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Corporal, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, Pozières
18 Feb 1917: Involvement AIF WW1, Corporal, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, German Withdrawal to Hindenburg Line and Outpost Villages
26 Mar 1917: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion
10 Jun 1917: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, Messines
5 Apr 1918: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, Dernancourt/Ancre
24 Apr 1918: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, Villers-Bretonneux
8 Aug 1918: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, "The Last Hundred Days"
18 Sep 1918: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 773, 50th Infantry Battalion, Breaching the Hindenburg Line - Cambrai / St Quentin Canal
31 Jan 1919: Discharged AIF WW1
Date unknown: Involvement 10th Infantry Battalion, Pozières

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Wife  Mrs R S Adam, living at 216 Akenhead Road, Govan Hill, Glasgow, Scotland

Prior to enlisting Robert lived at Adelaide SS Coy, Adelaide, SA.

Described on enlisting as 24 years 7 months old; married; 5' 5" tall; 130 lbs; fresh complexion; blue eyes; fair hair; tattoo (heart design) back of right forearm; Protestant.

29/8/1914        Enlisted at Morphettville, SA
                       Commanding Officer appointed Robert to E Company of the 10th Battalion, at Morphettville Camp

20/10/1914      Embarked from Outer Harbour, Port Adelaide, on board HMAT A11 Ascanius 
                       as a Private in the E Company, 10th Infantry Battalion

2/3/1915          Embarked on board Ionian, to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Forces
                       in Gallipoli

25/4/1915        Landed at Gallipoli

15/5/1915        appointed Lance Corporal - Gallipoli

21/8/1915        admitted to hospital (dysentry), No.2 Field Ambulance,
                       transferred to Casualty Clearing Station, Anzac

5/9/1915          embarked on board HT Sardinia at Gallipoli, for Mudros

16/9/1915        admitted dysentry, admitted to military hospital, London

29/12/1915      proceeding to rejoing unit, ex Weymouth, England

15/1/1916        rejoined 10th battalion from being sick, at Tel-el-Kebir

26/2/1916        transferred to 50th Infantry Battalion, Serapeum

The 50th Battalion was raised in Egypt on 26/2/1916 as part of the "doubling" of the AIF. Approximately half of its recruits were veterans from the 10th Battalion, and the other half, fresh reinforcements from Australia. Reflecting the composition of the 10th, the 50th was predominantly composed of men from
South Australia. The battalion became part of the 13th Brigade of the 4th Australian Division and was dubbed "Hurcombe's Hungry Half Hundred", after its first CO, Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Hurcombe.

1/3/1916          promoted to Corporal

11/3/1916        taken on strength into 50th Battalion, Tel-el-Kebir

5/6/1916          embarked on board HMAT Arcadian, to join the British Expeditionary Forces,
                        ex Alexandria
12/6/1916        disembarked into Marseilles, France

After arriving in France early June 1916, the 50th fought in its first major battle at Mouquet Farm between 12 and 15/8/1916 and suffered heavy losses.

15/8/1916        Shell shock - wounded in action

The 50th Battalion took part in another assault launched there on 3/9/1916, however this was mostly uneventful. The battalion saw out the rest of the year alternating between front-line duty, and training and labouring behind the line. This routine continued through the bleak winter of 1916-'17.

6/1/1917          admitted sick to 4th Australian Field Ambulance
17/2/1917        rejoined unit in the field

Early in 1917, the battalion participated in the advance that followed the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line, and attacked at Noreuil on 2/4/1917.

26/3/1917        reverted to rank of Private

Later in 1917, the focus of AIF operations moved to the Ypres sector in Belgium. There the battalion was involved in the battle of Messines between 10 and 12/6/1917.

26/7/1917        evacuated sick (stomatitis, tonsilities) to hospital, France

2/9/1917          fit to discharge to No.3 Rest Camp, Boulogne, France

24/10/1917       rejoined unit, Boulogne, France

Another winter of trench routine followed.

Utilising troops freed by the collapse of Russia in October 1917, the German Army launched a major offensive on the Western Front at the end of March 1918. The 4th Division was deployed to defend positions south of the River Ancre in France.
At Dernancourt, on 5/4/1918, the 50th Battalion assisted, almost totally in a reserve role, in the repulse of the largest German attack mounted against Australian troops during the war. The German threat persisted through April, and on ANZAC Day 1918 the 50th participated in the now legendary attack to dislodge the enemy from Villers-Bretonneux.

23/5/1918         bomb wound to the hip, received in the field

24/5/1918         admitted to 20th Casualty Clearing Station, in the field

25/5/1918         transferred to St John Ambulance Brigade, Etaples, France

12/6/1918         marched out to unit, Havre, France

26/6/1918         on leave in UK

12/7/1918         rejoined unit from leave

The 50th Battalion continued to play an active role during the Allies' own offensive, launched on 8/8/1918 - The Last Hundred Days. Its last major operation of the war was the attack on the Hindenburg Line (Breaching the Hindenburg Line) on 18/9/1918, during which the 50th composed part of the 4th Division's reserve.

Given that Private Robert Sangster Adam was a 1914 man - he being involded in the fighting since 1914 - he, like all of the other 1914 men, were given special 1914 leave.

23/9/1918         proceeded to Australia on leave

26/9/1918         embarked for Australia, ex Taranto

8/10/1918         returned to Australia on board Port Sydney

28/10/1918       special leave in Italy

2/12/1918        disembarked in Australia

31/1/1919         discharged from service in AIF

The 50th Battalion ceased to exist as a separate entity when it was amalgamated with the 51st Battalion on 6/3/1919 to form the 50th/51st Battalion. This battalion was later amalgamated  with the 49th to form the 49th/50th/51st Battalion which eventually took on the name of the 13th Infantry Brigade Battalion. 

1914-15 Star (1834);  British War Medal (2196), Victory Medal (2169)

It is unkown what work Pte Adam took up when he returned to Australia. 

Passed away _____

buried in _____

Sourced and submitted by Julianne T Ryan and updated by Nathan Rohrlach.  25/5/2015.  Lest we forget.