Item 10: General William Holmes diary, 23 August 1914-22 February 1915 - Page 144
THURSDAY - 22ND OCTOBER 1914:
The Administrator informed Lieut. Col. Watson (O.C.Troops) that he was not satisfied with the behaviour of the troops in regard to looting, and instructions have now been issued to the effect that further cases of the kind will be very severely dealt with. Courts-Martial are being held into cases already brought under notice.
A message was received at 4-0 p.m. from Major Heritage: -
"Occupied Kawieng Saturday. Proceeded Varder Is. captured vessels "Siar", "Matupi" and "Senta". Am conveying them Rabaul; expect anchoring harbour daylight to-morrow. Consul Jolly and German Commissioner on board. Lieut. Holmes administering Kawieng temporarily."
Reply was despatched congratulating Major Heritage on his success.
The following telegram was received from the Secretary of State, London, dated 20th October, and repeated by Navy Office: -
"His Majesty's Government, has learned with ........ satisfaction of the capture of the German Ship "Komet" with complete Wireless equipment; skill with which expedition was devised and carried out reflects great credit on all concerned. "[indecipherable]" will be informed."
Two messages received from Navy Office, as follows: -
"Supplies sent to you by "Moresby" were forwarded according to telegram received 23rd Septr., which states as follows: - Begins - Cost of above urges necessity recover from Merchants guarantee to Administrator - ends. Please advise as to the position."
"Afford every facility Lucas to sell cargo per "Moresby" and trade with natives. Provide him with store if required at small rental. Your telegram received unqualified to detain "Matunga" - Minister - Defence."
Details of the "Matunga's" cargo were forwarded to Mr. Lucas by Burns, Philp & Coy. and a message was received from Mr. Lucas to be despatched to Burns, Philp, but owing to W/T troubles this message was not received by Port Moresby.
O.C. Troops (Lt. Col. Watson) held a meeting of all Officers present in Rabaul, and impressed upon them the necessity of putting down the looting that has been going on.
Lieut. McDowell has been appointed to take charge of the sanitation at Rabaul and Herbertshohe.
Health of troops is excellent Ptes James and Guard injured in explosion on 7th instant, are now out of danger.