191 editions of Pioneer News were published over the 60 years between 1952 and 2012. The first few volumes were stencil copied (ie Roneo or Gestetner processes) before being typeset in September 1953. The familiar headline banner was introduced in January 1956 and the Battalion’s colour patch added in June 1957. The format has remained essentially unchanged since then and has been typeset and printed mostly by the same company.
Generally there have been 3 issues per year of 4 pages each but in the “boom times” up to 4 editions were sent out per year with up to 12 pages including the occasional insert of photographs of Association members at various get-togethers.
Max Herron aided by his wife, Peg, was the editor from Vol 3, Edition 3, in September 1958 until his passing in 2013. Fifty-Five years must be some kind of World record! Peg Herron continued in the role until her untimely passing in 2014.
Max recorded the early history of
Pioneer News in 1973 (see Extracted Story #14).
Pioneer News presents a wonderful genealogical record of the names and activities of the Association’s membership. The “From the Mailbag” banner header was first seen in July 1961 (but began in September 1958) and has remained the same ever since. However sections such as “Smoko” have quietly faded away. While much of the content pertains to the 2/1st there are also numerous references to the 2/2nd and 2/3rd Pioneer Battalions.
As new editions after the 60 year anniversary have been published they have also been added to this website. Each edition for the current year appears as an individual pdf but they are combined into a single year volume at the end of each years publication.
Pioneer News is now only published as an adjunct to the ANZAC Day march and is, of course, under new stewardship.