OFF WOODLARK ISLAND,
9th September 1914.
Dear Colonel Legge;
I wrote you last from Palm Island, off Townsville, on the 27th August, detailing all happenings up to that date, which letter I hope duly reached you.
I made good use of our time then by sending the Troops ashore every day, where they received most valuable individual instruction in musketry under the personal direction of Major Heritage and Lieut. Marsden, who is one of the staff of the School of Musketry. Both these Officers have done yeoman service in this direction and they were assisted by one or two other Officers (including my son), who have been through musketry courses at the School of Randwick. I established a short range on shore which answered all purposes admirably. Nothing in the way of manoeuves could be attempted as the ground was not suitable. The men have got quite handy and expert with the rifle, including both Soldiers and Sailors; the latter was very green at first but are now splendid.
There is a most excellent feeling on board; the discipline is of the best, food is good and there is not a single case in hospital. I work all hands three times a day.
All have been inoculated against Enteric and vaccinated against Small-pox. Howse has now commenced on the Quinine as a preventative of Malaria.
At Port Moresby I found the "Kanowna" with her detachment of 500 Queensland Troops. I inspected them on Sunday, 6th instant, and must say I am sadly disappointed, as they compared most unfavorably with those on board this ship, and I concluded they would be a very weak reed to lean upon. I therefore considered it my duty to write the following report on same day to hand to the Admiral when I should meet him at sea at the renezvous off Rossel Island, which meeting took place this morning.
6th September, 1914
From Officer Commanding
Australian Naval & Military Exped.
To - The Rear-Admiral Commanding
"To-day I made an inspection of the whole of the Officers, Non-commissioned Officers and men of the Infantry Contingent now on board the Troopship "Kanowna" and regret to have to report that I consider the whole Unit absolutely unfitted for active service, and recommend