Tuesday, 12 July 2016 03:30

Phillip Schuler: The remarkable life of one of Australia’s greatest war correspondents

Grandson of German immigrants and son of the influential chief of staff and editor at The Age, Frederick Schuler, Phillip Schuler seemed destined for a career in journalism. He joined The Age as a cadet in 1909 under his father’s editorship, along with other recruits who would make their mark including Keith Murdoch and Roy Bridges.

In the months leading up to and after Britain’s declaration of war on Germany on August 2, 1914, Schuler’s focus was coverage of the war and he was appointed as The Age’s correspondent, travelling to Egypt aboard the transport ship Orvietto along with Major General William Throsby Bridges and Australia’s official war correspondent, Charles Bean. Over the next three years he would cover critical incidents including the sinking of the German cruiser Emden by the Sydney and, most significantly, the Gallipoli campaign.

Working closely with Bean, Schuler’s despatches provided Australian readers with vivid descriptions of the enormous bravery and appalling suffering of those who fought at Gallipoli.

In early 1916, after completing his account of the campaign, Australia in Arms, Schuler joined the AIF as a soldier and in June 1917, at the age of 27, he was killed in Flanders.

In this detailed account of Schuler’s brief life, Mark Baker, former Senior Editor of The Age, editor of The Canberra Times and Managing Editor of Fairfax Media, provides a fascinating insight into wartime journalism and the lives and roles of journalists of the time, as well as Australia’s involvement in the Gallipoli campaign and the Western Front.  

Author: Mark Baker

Publisher: Allen & Unwin

Published 18 July, 2016

RRP: $32.99

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