Name: Robert Smart

 

Birth Date: 1887 Where: Bega, New South Wales
Died: 14th November, 1916 Where: Montauban, France
Place of Enlistment: Brisbane, Queensland Age: 28
Serial Number: 415 Battalion: 26th
Rank on Enlistment: Sergeant Rank on Discharge/Death: Sergeant

Awards: 1914 - 15 Star, British War Medal 1914 - 1920, Victory Medal,

 

Photograph Smart

Service Details:

 

 

12 April

1915                      Enlisted

9 June

1915                      Embarked Australia

August

1915                      Embarked Egypt

10 Sept. – 12 Dec.

1915                      Gallipoli

31 January

1916                      Promoted Sergeant

21 March

1916                      France

6/7 June

1916                      Trench Raid

29 July – 27 Aug.

1916                      Pozieres (Sausage Valley)

4 August

1916                      Pozieres

6 September

1916                      Belgium

October

1916                      Ypres and Dernacourt

3 November

1916                      Battle of Ancres Heights & Fricourt

18 November

1916                      Killed in Action, Grid Trench, Montauban, France

 

 

 

 

Biographical Details:

Robert Smart was born in Bega New South Wales to Robert W. and Jessie E. Smart. He had two sisters, both nominated as his Next of Kin, who were the joint beneficiaries of his will.
Robert was an original of the 26th Battalion and served with it in Egypt and Gallipoli. When the Battalion returned to Egypt Robert was promoted to Sergeant the rank he held when he was in charge of the Left Blocking Party on the June 6/7th Trench Raid.
Robert was among those who were able to enjoy the special leave in London.  He is No. 19 in the Black ANZACs’ group photo.
In November 1916 the 7th Brigade was involved in the Battle of Ancre Heights. (Brigadier Paton was wounded early in this battle.) On the 14th November Robert was killed in that action.
Following his death a Red Cross investigation was initiated in response to Robert’s sister receiving a letter post marked with a date after Robert’s reported death.  A Witness from the 26th Battalion stated:
“I saw Sgt. Smart dead in a sap at Flers on Nov. 14. He was wounded and while he was being carried down the sap he was killed instantly by one of our own shells. Death was instantaneous and he was buried in the sap. He was Bomb Sergt. to the Batt. and was the only Sergt. we had killed at Flers. He was just going to get a commission.”
The following effects were forwarded to his sister:
Pocket book, Note book, Post cards, Photos. Testament, note-book, handkkf.
Robert’s war medals were presented to his sister Helen after she signed a declaration that both parents were deceased and that there were no brothers.
Robert’s body was not recovered and his name appears on a wall of the Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France.
The following appeared in a local newspaper:
SMART: — In loving memory of our only
brother, Sergt. Robert Smart, killed in
action, in France 14th  November, 1916,
after 20 months' service, aged 29 years
and 5 months. “His duty done.”
Inserted by his slsters, Nell and Daisy.