Neville Browning OAM unit history books are renowned and first editions when 'out of print' always escalate quickly in value and are therefore highly sought after. Thus our 'not to be missed' buy recommendation! The 2nd Pioneers Battalion AIF were established on 10 March 1916, in Egypt. After Gallipoli the AIF was reorganised and it was deemed that Australia would adopt British Army battle order concepts. A total of five Pioneer Battalions were raised with one being assigned to each of the five infantry divisions. Men with specialist construction or engineering background were sought for the Battalion. Pioneer Battalion members were trained as infantry but their primary tasks were of an engineering nature like digging trenches, constructing key positions, bridging and light railways. 2nd Pioneer members were issued with a distinctive purple and white diamond colour patch.
Their first major action was at Pozieres in late July 1916 and following attacks on Mouquet Farm. They continued to advance east on the Western Front taking part in the fighting during the Second Battle of Bullecourt in May 1917, and the Third Battle of Ypres later in the year. In early 1918, they took part in defending against the German Spring Offensive. August 1918, saw the 2nd Pioneers supporting the Allied advance during the Hundred Days Offensive, which ultimately brought about victory. One of the Battalion's most remembered and documented infantry roles was indeed its last action and the last for the AIF Infantry - historian William Westerman described their heroic action as the "most successful use of Australian pioneers in a combat capacity in the entire war".
This action took place on the 5th October 1918, at Montbrehain, when they advanced in the early morning with other infantry of the depleted 6th Brigade AIF. They succeeded in occupying the village and in the process took 400 German prisoners. Neville Browning OAM unit history books are renowned for concise details and high quality of presentation. Thus Neville's books are always a must for Military book collections, family genealogy, medal collectors and museums. High Quality - anti age laminated paper, hard pictorial cover, 328 pages, photos, maps, full index, nominal roll, honour roll, awards and recommendations.