Arthur Augustus Nangle

Information about birth

Date of birth:
Place of birth:
Richmond, Victoria, Australia

General information


Army information

Australian Imperial Force
Service number:
Enlistment date:
Enlistment place:
Seymour, Victoria, Australia
 —  Australian Infantry, 6th Bn.  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
Place of death:
Decline Copse, Passchendaele, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)


Distinctions and medals 2

Points of interest 3

#1 Place of birth
#2 Enlistment place
#3 Place of death or original burial place

My story

Private Arthur Augustus Nangle served in the Australian Infantry 6th Battalion part of the 2nd Australian Brigade of the 1st Australian Division. The Battalion would participate in the first phase of the Second Battle of Passchendaele on the 26th of October 1917.
After the disastrous First Battle of Passchendaele (12 October 1917) it became obvious that the weary Anzac forces had reached their limit. High command decided to replace the Anzac troops with Canadian forces, in a final attempt to capture the village and ridge of Passchendaele. The Canadian Corps took over from the II Anzac on the 18th October 1917. They planned to attack Passchendaele in three separate operations roughly corresponding to the three phases of the II Anzac attempt on the 12th of October. The first phase took place on the 26th of October, the only one in which Australian troops would still participate.
The weather was bad. The ground was boggy and littered with shell holes due to the unceasing artillery shelling. The 3rd and 4th Canadian Divisions attacked the village of Passchendaele on the 26th of October, without great success. They had almost the same experience as the 9th and 10th Australian Brigades on the 12th of October. The Australian Infantry 6th Battalion operated on the right flank of these Canadian Divisions, at the other side of the Ypres-Roulers railway. They seized the Keiberg Railway cutting and dug in beyond Decline Copse. At 4.15 p.m. the Germans launched a counterattack on the Battalion’s position at Decline Copse. The Germans didn’t attack the Canadian positions on the ridge. The Canadian artillery put down a dense barrage on the Passchendaele Ridge and, an Australian machinegun barrage scattered the advancing Germans.
Notwithstanding this success, the Canadian troops on the Passchendaele Ridge retreated, just as on the 12th of October. The forward Canadians pulled back when they came under heavy German artillery and machinegun fire. With their left flank in the air, the 6th Australians had no choice but to retreat from their positions at Decline Copse at the Keiberg Railway cutting.
Private Arthur Augustus Nangle was killed in action at the Australian position at the Keiberg Railway cutting. The 6th Australians had just landed in their objective when a German shell exploded near Private Arthur Augustus Nangle. The burst of the shell blew Private Nangle’s arm and shoulder off. He died an hour afterwards. His body was never recovered, because the Australians withdrew from the position later that day. Private Arthur Augustus Nangle’s memory is remembered on the Ypres Menin Gate Memorial.

Sources 7

"Official History of Australia in the War of 1914-1918", Bean C.E.W., Sydney, Angus & Robertson LTD, 1943, pg. 933-937.
Sources used
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Australian War Memorial
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National Archives of Australia
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The Long, Long Trail
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War Diary Australian Infantry 6th Bn.
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