Portrait of Private (Pte) Henry (Harry) Dalziel VC of the 15th Battalion. Pte Dalziel was awarded the Victoria Cross for 'most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty when in action with a Lewis gun section' on 4 July 1918 at Hamel Wood, France. Pte Dalziel rushed at an enemy machine gun with his revolver and killed or captured the entire crew and gun, being severely wounded in the hand. He was ordered back to the regimental aid post for treatment, deciding instead to secure ammunition and man his Lewis gun until he was severely wounded in the head. He received medical treatment in England for his head injury, returning to Australia in January 1919. Pte Dalziel is wearing a bandage under his hat.
From the Courier Mail, 17 December 2010
New Role for Digger's VC
The Australian War Memorial has taken delivery of a Victoria Cross medal awarded to Private Harry Dalziel for heroism during the World War 1 battle of Hamel.
The medal was acquired at auction by businessman Kerry Stokes and donated to the memorial, taking its collection to 66 of the 97 VCs awarded to Australians.
The medal and five other medals awarded to Dalziel sold for $525,000.
It will undergo a painstaking conservation process to prepare it for display in the War Memorial's renovated Hall of Valour next week.
Dalziel, a Lewis gunner, was wounded in the head but went back to collect more ammunition at a place called Pear Trench.
"He attacked a machine gun post, was hit badly in the head but he continued the attack", memorial director Steve Gower said.
Dalziel was in hospital until 1919.
The official citation described how he used a revolver to kill or capture one German gun crew, then twice crossed open ground under machine gun and artillery fire to collect ammunition for the Lewis gun.
Dalziel died in Brisbane in 1965 at the age of 72.
Click HERE to view Harry's own very moving account of the action in which he earned his V.C.
Click HERE to view a personal tribute to Harry for assisting a local German family during WW 11.
Click HERE to view an article about Harry's life researched by Harry Willey
Click HERE to view a letter from Princess Elizabeth, in her own handwriting, thanking Harry for offering his VC as a gift for her son.
Click HERE to view a press article about Harry's decision to go back to operations from hospital rather than returning to Australia.
Click HERE to view a press article about the extraordinary coincidence concerning the falling of a Dalziel street sign at the time of his funeral.
Click HERE to view a number of photographs of Harry with captions provided by his son David.
Click HERE to go to a new and very comprehensive Web Site about Harry.
Return to Home Page