The 2/1st Machine Gun Battalion was formed on 14 December 1939 as part of the 6th Division and served in England, Greece, Crete and Papua New Guinea before becoming part of the 7th Division and serving in Borneo. The battalion was disbanded on 26 January 1946. Horrie the Wog Dog was the battalion's unofficial mascot.
- Lieutenant Colonel Claude Esdaile Prior (1939–1940);
- Lieutenant Colonel Cyril Henwood Fidock (1941–1942);
- Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Neil Gooch;
- Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Graham Keith Haupt (1944–1945).
- "2/1st Machine Gun Battalion: Unit Appointments". Orders of Battle.com. http://www.ordersofbattle.com/UnitData.aspx?UniX=6759&Tab=App&Titl=2/1%20Machine%20Gun%20Battalion. Retrieved 14 April 2011.
- Hocking, Philip; The Long Carry — A History of the 2/1st Australian Machine Gun Battalion, 1939–1946, Melbourne, 1997 ISBN 0-646-30817-3
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