|Australian Official History WW1 - Vol1- The Story of Anzac - Map 5 - Lemnos Imbros Tendeos and the Dardanelles, page 189.|
Lemnos was chosen as the main base for the Dardanelles campaign because of its strategic location at the entrance to the Dardanelles and its large deep harbour.
The Greek Government led by Prime Minister Venizelos offered the Allies use of Lemnos as a naval base and offered three divisions of Greek troops to help the allies capture the Gallipoli peninsula.
Because of its position, the island of Lemnos was destined to play an important part in the campaigns against the Ottoman Empire in the First World War. It was the obvious staging post for the Gallipoli campaign - its harbor being one of the best in the Aegean and its location close to the peninsula (with other smaller islands nearby). Only 80 kilometres from the entrance to the Dardanelles, Lemnos therefore became the main assembly point for the allied Gallipoli invasion force, with subsidiary bases at the islands of Imbros, Tenedos and Skyros.
The first troops to arrive on Lemnos was a force of marines on 23rd February 1915. Thousands of troops, nurses and support workers would arrive in coming weeks and months to turn Lemnos and its main port Mudros into a considerable Allied camp. Lemnos would play a vital role in the eight and half month Gallipoli campaign, whether as a key transit point for troops, housing large hospitals and the location of convalescent and rest camps.
|Map of West Mudros, showing Turk's Head peninsula and Sarpi, the location of the 3rd Australian general Hospital and Sarpi Rest camp. Australian War memorial image G7432G1S65XXII6|