19th June 2022

Royal Australian Artillery

Stokes Melb

This is a extra small (12mm diametre) blackened brass button. These would be used on side caps, peaked caps, gorget patches*, etc.

* The  patches  worn on each side of the collar of the tunics  are called “gorget patches” in reference to the historical piece of armour that covered the neck.

 History of the RAA:

Did you know that the Royal Australian Artillery came into existence before Federation?

In 1898 the government of New South Wales sent a request to Downing Street that their artillery be named the ‘Royal Australian Artillery’, which seemed a bit cheeky, even to Downing Street, so they in turn suggested the combined colonial artillery units of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria be thus named, as there existed a permanent artillery only in those colonies at that time. The Victorian Government thought this step should wait until Federation. Then the Premier of NSW then suggested that the permanent artillery forces of each colony could be be designated a battery of the RAA, so if such forces in the other colonies be raised they would then be included. The Victorian government accepted this idea, and the Queen gave her assent on 14th July, 1899.

Geelong Advertiser (Vic), 21st August 1899 page 1.Each colonial artillery then became, for example , the Queensland Regiment of the RAA.

Only months later, the whole of the Victorian regiment of the RAA would be volunteering for service in the Transvaal. They were joined by the machine-gun section of the Queensland Regiment and 17 men and officers from the NSW regiment. A further field artillery unit left with the second division later that year.

The photos below are from Royal Australian Australian Town and Country Journal (Sydney), 28th October 1899 page 25.

“Royal Australian Artillery-The New South Wales “A” Battery, which was Offered to the imperial Government, and Refused.”

“A Gun in Action.”

“No. 1 Gun and Men.”

From Federation until 1962 the artillery was referred to as the Royal Australian Artillery. Prior to 1947 the artillery in Australia were mainly militia units.

Sydney Mail, 2nd February 1938 page 40.

Since the 19th September 1962, the artillery were renamed the Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery as it is now a regiment of the Australian Army.

The Age, 31st March 1949 page 3.

The Canberra Times, 22nd November 1963 page 36. Note the new title.

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