Tracing Your Great War Ancestors: The Egypt and Palestine Campaigns is the first book explicitly aimed at helping the descendants of those who fought in this part of the Middle East find out more about their ancestor’s actions, experiences and achievements. Their wartime lives were very different to those who served on the Western Front, and yet have never before been explored from this angle. Hundreds of thousands of British and Imperial troops fought in the Western Desert, Sinai Desert, Palestine, the Jordan Valley and Syria. They served in conditions quite unlike those more familiarly faced in France and Flanders, with everyday challenges to survival including the heat, lack of water, hostile wildlife and rampant disease. The fighting too was of a different character, with more open, sweeping campaigns across desert and mountains, and comparatively little systematic trench warfare.
As well as giving the reader a vivid impression of the experience of wartime service in the region, Stuart Hadaway’s handbook provides a guide to the main sources, archives and websites that researchers can consult to get an insight into their ancestor’s role and their contribution to the war effort.