Mephisto taken in late night operation
QLD police forensic and ballistic experts conducted forensic analysis of a WWI German tank Mephisto at The Workshops Rail Museum on Friday. Police Ballistics Services Alan Piper taking a a mould from the tank. Photo: Sarah Harvey / The Queensland Times. Photo: Sarah Harvey.

Emma Clarke, WWI tank Mephisto taken from Ipswich in late night operation, The Queensland Times, 14 February 2018

The rarest war relic in the world has been moved from its temporary home in Ipswich.

First World War German tank Mephisto spent the last six months on display at the Workshops Rail Museum at North Ipswich but after a tricky late night operation, it’s gone.

The tank now lives at the Queensland Museum.

The move on the weekend marked the 100th anniversary of when it was first lost in the Second Battle of Villers-Bretonneuxon April 24, 1918.

Only 40mm separated German Mephisto and the entry of the Queensland Museum’s Anzac Gallery, but the move from the Workshops Rail Museum was a success, and now this hulking piece of history has found a new home.

The tank is quite the traveller, having been on display twice in Ipswich since it was transported to Australia from Ipswich at the end of WW1.

Mephisto spent 70 years at Queensland Museum and at one point it was housed outside and flooded during the 2011 event.

In 2013, it paid its first visit to Ipswich before it was moved to the Australian War Memorial in Canberra in 2015 and then back to Ipswich last year.

Mephisto is a German A7V tanks captured by Australian troops, of the 26th Battalion, which was composed mainly of Queenslanders.

One of only 20 built, it is the last surviving example of the first German tank.