This blog is a companion to the Database of Volunteers of Essendon and Flemington

Monday, November 5, 2012

Williams Bros, Frank Smiley and Maurice Eaton, 1917

Frank Smiley, Sgt Eaton, Gordon & I
To dear Stan
with love from Harold. France 14/6/17".

 Gordon and Harold Williams of the 12th Field Ambulance having their portrait taken with Sergeant Eaton and Frank Smiley.  So from left to right, we see:

Harold Williams, Sergeant Maurice Eaton, Frank Smiley, and Sergeant Gordon Williams.

A snap below, taken in France on 8 May 1917, though with a different date, is in the album and again places the Williams' brothers at the same time and place as Maurice Eaton and Frank Smiley, who were serving at this date in the 4th Pioneer Battalion and the 4th Divisional Artillery Corps, respectively. They were possibly serving in the same sector of the line.  Reference to the Unit War Diaries for this date may clarify that.  

"Zambaks" seems possibly a play on words that refers to "Zam-Buk", a cure-all salve that came on the market about 1903, and was still being advertised in the papers right round Australia in the 1950s.

 From the Snowy River Mail in 1917

"Zam-Bak is the ideal healer, and at the present time, when there is a great shortage of doctors, it it real patriotism for every housewife and every worker to keep a pot of Zam-Buk handy for   the prompt self-treatment of any sud den wound or sore. This splendid herbal balm is un equalled, not only for cuts, bruises, burns, scalds, sprains, etc., but also for obstinate diseases like eczema, ringworm, ulcers, piles, etc. Of all chemists and stores at 1/6 and 3/16 per pot."

 Many parcels from home probably contained a post of Zam-buk, which was ferociously applied to itchy feet and other regions.

Is it just me, or does anyone else think that Maurice Eaton looks like former Treasurer Peter Costello?

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