German Colonisation in the Pacific – The Outbreak of War. The “Old Protectorate”: Discovery and Annexation. The Despatch of the AN and MEF. Rabaul at the Outbreak of War. The Seizure of New Britain. The Terms of Capitulation. The Establishment of Military Administration. The Capture of the Komet. The Military Occupation of Nauru. The North-west Pacific Expedition. Transfer of the Military Administratorship. The Early Stages of the Pethebridge Administration. Work of the Australian Army Medical Corps. The Administration of Native Affairs. Financial Problems. The Administration of Justice. Land Policy and the Control of Trade and Commerce. The Outstations. Garrison Life. Later Phases of the Military Administration. The Mandate and the End of the Military Occupation.
OFFICIAL HISTORY OF AUSTRALIA IN THE WAR OF 1914-1918 Volume X – The Australians at Rabaul
This is the tenth volume in the series, written by Seaforth Mackenzie. It presents the background to, and a detailed account of, the capture of German New Guinea, the first Australian fighting in September 1914, while the AIF was still being formed. The Royal Australian Navy and the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force under Colonel William Holmes had captured Rabaul and, within three months, Holmes’s forces had garrisoned the remainder of Germany’s Pacific possessions south of the Equator, stretching from north-east mainland New Guinea to the Admiralty Islands, New Ireland, Bougainville and Nauru. Clearly different from the other volumes of the series, volume ten records only one skirmish between the Germans and the Australians. In a war that was one of the largest in history, the conflict in New Guinea was far-flung, short and minor; an episode that was of little importance in battle history but of major importance in the military and general history of Australia.