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DUNLOP, William Archibald Shuldham (1892-1966)

DUNLOP, William Archibald Shuldham (1892-1966)

William Archibald Shuldham Dunlop was among the first intake, on 22 June 1911 at the newly opened Royal Military College, Duntroon near the future site of Canberra. Known as 'Bill' he rose to become a Major.

Born on 30 June 1892, in Holywood, County Down, Northern Ireland, the son of Dr Shuldham Henry Dunlop and his wife Marion, he arrived in Australia at a young age with his parents. His father went into medical practice at Charlton in north-western Victoria.

William Dunlop (Rowing, 1910).

William Dunlop (Rowing, 1910).

William Dunlop was enrolled at the Geelong College as a boarder in 1904, staying until 1910. He was a vigorous athlete, in the 1st Football Team of 1909 and 1910, the VIII in 1909 and stroke of the Crew in 1910, as well as participating in the athletics team of 1908. He featured notably in the School sports of 1910 in the Long Jump, 120 yards hurdles and Weight Putting. He won the cricket ball throw with a distance of 87 yards. In April 1910, Pegasus mentioned that Sergeant-Drummer W Dunlop is in charge of the band and several recruits have been doing good work under his direction. Pegasus of April 1911 noted Dunlop’s success in the highly competitive entrance examination for Duntroon commenting that he had placed seventh out of twenty-one applicants in the first intake. In April 1912, Pegasus published his description of the establishment of the Military College. At College he gained the following awards:
1905, 1st, English, Lower 4th Form.
1905, 2nd, History, Lower 4th Form.
1905, 2, Scripture, Lower 4th Form.1908, 1, Latin, 5th Form B.

During World War I, he enlisted in the AIF and served with the 4th Australian Light Horse in D Squadron Machine Gun Section, embarking on 19th October 1914 on HMAT A18 Wiltshire for Egypt, then Gallipoli, and France. Neil Smith wrote in Men of Beersheba of his early training: 'Another professional soldier was young Lieutenant W Dunlop who had been commissioned with the first class from the Royal Military College at Duntroon on 15th August 1914...Training of the machine gunners under Lieutenant Bill Dunlop and Warrant Officer Cyril Smith was also vigorously carried out, competitive examinations being held in all matters connected with the description, mechanism and tactical handling of the gun.'

Dunlop was mentioned in Sir Douglas Haig's Despatches, gazetted on 9 April, 1917. He returned to Australia, taking his '1914 leave' and embarking on 13 April, 1919. David Holloway spoke of Dunlop's service in Hooves, Wheels and Tracks: 'Probably the only former member of the 4th Light Horse to remain with the permanent forces was Captain (then Major) Bill Dunlop. In August 1914 he was one of the select group who graduated from the first class of the new Royal Military College at Duntroon. His first posting had been as OC of the Machine Gun Section of the 4th. In 1922, Dunlop was Brigade Major of Colonel Bourchier's 5th Cavalry Brigade. Several of his letters from Anzac were reprinted in Pegasus of December 1915, and from France in December 1916. His albums are held by the National Library of Australia, and are described by Helen Ennis in Intersections:

'The desire to visually make sense of their war experiences was not confined to those who took photographs. Major W A S Dunlop, for example, was more like a bowerbird, gathering material for his album from a wide range of sources, including newspaper articles, aerial photographs, postcards and personal memorabilia such as leave forms. He brought these varied items together into a hectic, seemingly disorganised narrative. Though it paid little attention to a correct chronological sequence of events, it nevertheless has its own story to tell about the war. Aside from its messy energy, Dunlop's album is distinguished by the inclusion of some totally unexpected images: photographs of German soldiers. Three of these photographs are scattered through the album, along with an advertisement for German war bonds and a German postcard of the Western Front. Each is a group portrait of young German soldiers, probably a company, in which the men are conventionally arranged by height, with the tallest standing in the back row and the shortest men lying on the ground in front. These are relatively relaxed photographs that speak of the men's camaraderie and of their group belonging. However, underneath each image is a brief caption written in Dunlop's hand —Taken from a Hun, Taken from a Boche, Captured from a Hun - and a recurring date 'the night of 4-5 May 1918'. Only a few words, but sufficient to rupture the intimacy of the images and render them unstable. Dunlop's captions, grim confirmation of an Allied victory, dramatically change the status of these modest little things, no bigger than postcards. Whether 'captured' from a German prisoner or 'taken' from a corpse, the photographs assume another reality as trophies of war and souvenirs, part of the booty that was commonly brought back to Australia. They are, however, more complex than this suggests, for these photographs hover right at the very limits of representation, of what could and could not be given visual form. The night of 4-5 May 1918 referred to reconnaissance patrols at Morlancourt, involving 9th Infantry Brigade Headquarters, with whom Dunlop was Brigade Major, and involved amongst others General Rosenthal. These patrols are described by C E W Bean in the Official History, Volume VI, pp. 69-74.

The AWM Collection holds numerous items relating to Dunlop, and a portrait. First, there is a photograph of 'members of the 4th Light Horse Regiment, AIF, saluting during the march past on Anzac Day 1928', including Dunlop; there is a second photograph, of 'officers of the 1st Australian Division mounted on their horses in front of the Sphinx and a Pyramid, Captain W Banister, Lt J Parkin, Lt C G Lucas and Lt W A S Dunlop'(page 271); the third is 'a group portrait (again including W A S Dunlop) of allied officers at Steenwerck, Belgium'. The Collection also holds detailed entries from Dunlop's personal diaries describing service in France in various sectors, one section dealing with the defence of Amiens, as well as information on the 1918 Advance on Damascus. The portrait is of Major W A S Dunlop, who was a member of the Australian War Memorial staff from 17th October 1938 until 15th March 1940. Dunlop wrote The Fighting Soldier in 1939, and presented a paper titled Notes for Commanding Officers in 1938.’

He died at Heidelberg on 21 June 1966.

His brother, Dennis Patrick Shuldham Dunlop (1894-1953), was also educated at Geelong College.

Sources: Pegasus April 1911 p 4. ‘The Royal Military College of Australia’-Pegasus April 1912 p 31 (Includes Image). James Affleck, Geelong Collegians at the Great War; pp183-184(citing Neil Smith, Men of Beersheba: A History of the 4th Light Horse Regiment 1914-1918; Helen Ennis, Intersections, Photography, History and the National Library of Australia; David Holloway, Hooves, Wheels and Tracks: A History of the 4/19th Prince of Wales's Light Horse Regiment and its predecessors; Pegasus; National Archives; AWM A04149; A04156; A04163.)
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