Colour illustration of the White Star Line ship 'Runic' at sea and was signed by 'Curl.' 'Curl' seems to be a reference to John Peile as the return address lists his name and regiment. He writes to his mother around August to September 1915 that he and his brother Albert will 'both come back with honors'. They were both killed in action.

The Runic was leased by the Commonwealth Goverment of Australia until 1917 for use as a transport ship.

Part of a collection of material relating to the World War I service of brothers John and Albert Victor Peile, who both died in the conflict. Younger brother Albert enlisted first. He was a 22-year-old unmarried clerk when he enlisted on 27 August 1914, service number 769, 3rd Battalion. He served in Gallipoli and later France, and was eventually promoted to the rank of corporal. He died in Bullecourt, France on 4 May 1917; his body was never found. He is commemorated at the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial. His brother John Peile was a 38-year-old unmarried miner when he enlisted on 25 June 1915, service number 2662, 2nd Battalion. He also served in in Gallipoli and France, and was similarly promoted to corporal. He died in France on 18 September 1918 and is buried at Roisel Communal Cemetery Extension, France. Their mother died only a few years later in 1926, aged 73. Their niece was Mrs M. J. Hitchens, the donor. Margaret Joan Hitchens (1916-?) was the daughter of Albert and John's sister Alice and her husband John Henry Dinwoodie.

Description of Content

Colourised image of a ship, with title above.

Physical Description

Colour illustration printed on paper.

More Information

  • Collection Names

    Returned and Services League (RSL) Collection

  • Collecting Areas

    Public Life & Institutions

  • Acquisition Information

    Donation from Victorian Branch, Returned & Services League of Australia Limited (RSL), Mrs Margaret J. Hitchens, 1986

  • Author

    Private John '. Peile - Australian Imperial Force (AIF), Aug-Sep 1915

  • Date Created


  • Format

    Postcard, Colourised

  • Inscriptions

    Printed on front: 'WHITE STAR LINER, S.S. RUNIC. [Star Photo.' Printed on back: 'POST CARD / ADVANCE AUSTRALIA / THIS SPACE MAY BE USED FOR CORRESPONDENCE. (FOR ADDRESS ONLY)' Printed on back top right corner: 'FOREIGN / 1/2d / INTER-STATE / 1d' Handwritten on back: 'Dear Mother / It is hard enough for me to write this short / note to tell you I could not get home. We have been going / for our lives not a moment to spare they are rushing us / away this week end not to much ? either but we / will pull out on top. I was in the hospital for 9 days / but alright now. I was in Sydney for a couple of days / with Albert. I got my photo taken they are not bad / I will forward them on as soon as I can. I hope I / can strike Albert over there but it will be a fluke / I hope mum you are not worrying to [sic] much because / we will both come back with honors hoping you / are in good health' Hand-written on back, top left corner: 'the boat on the / other side is the / one we sail / on' Hand-written on the back, along the top: 'With fondest love from your / forgetful son Curl' Hand-written on the back, top right corner: 'Address / J. Peile Private / 8th reinforce / 2 Battal / Liverpool'

  • Classification

    Military history, Service, Troop ships

  • Category

    History & Technology

  • Discipline


  • Type of item


  • Overall Dimensions

    139 mm (Width), 90 mm (Height)

  • References

    'HMAT Runic,' Desert Column: Australian Military History of the 20th Century, at: [Link 1] accessed: June 18, 2012 For Albert Peile's war record see the National Archives of Australia website at: [Link 2] For John Peile's war record see the National Archive of Australia website at: [Link 3]

  • Keywords

    World War I, 1914-1918