The Saxon boys from Euroa WW1

Kylie says

“There are over 150 soldiers from the Euroa District cited in this book.

A list is available below or simply click on the pdf book link on Kylie’s blog and search the document.
There is also an index at the rear of the book.
Search by Surname as soldiers often are referred to either by nicknames or initials.:)

A

Ernest Anderson (Euroa) SRN: 1111, 10494 -1st BAC/Brigade Headquarters/5thAus.Transport

Arthur Armstrong (Strathbogie) SRN: 1657 -21st Battalion/Trench Mortar Battery

B

Harry Barrett (Euroa) SRN: 2785 -8th Battalion/5th Pioneer Battalion

John Barry (Euroa/Carlton) SRN: 381 -7th Battalion/1st Pioneer Battalion

William Bateman (Donald/Maryborough) SRN: Lieutenant Colonel -21st Battalion/58th Battalion

Bert Beaton (Euroa) SRN: 1742 -8th Battalion

Francis Peter Beaton or Frank Beaton (Euroa) SRN: 3015, 4063, 1776 -22nd Battalion/51stBattalion

William Beaton (Euroa) SRN: 1912 -14th Battalion

William Belcher or Bill Belcher or Will Belcher (Miepoll South/Euroa) SRN: 223 -4th Light Horse Regiment/13th Light Horse

Charles Bell (Euroa) SRN: 755 -6th Machine Gun Company

Lindsay Bell or Lin Bell (Euroa) SRN: 2275 -3rd Pioneer Battalion

Sid Bell (Euroa) (Euroa) SRN: 5654 -8th Battalion

Herbert Bradford or Bert Bradford (Euroa) SRN: 7 -21st Battalion

Esmond Bunting or Es Bunting (Euroa) SRN: 297 -22nd Battalion

Alexander Burton or Alex Burton (Kyneton/Euroa) SRN: 384 -7th Battalion

C

Spencer Carne (Donald/Euroa) SRN: 1503 -24th Battalion

Esmond Carrick or Es Carrick (Euroa/Northcote) SRN: 72 -6th Battalion

Francis Charlton or Frank Charlton (Euroa) SRN: 800 -7th Battalion

Robert Charlton (Euroa) SRN: 4685 -Depot Battalion/21st Battalion

Arthur Clery (Violet Town) SRN: 2845 -2nd Pioneer Battalion

Alf Collins (Stanley/Beechworth/Euroa) SRN: 368 -7th Battalion

Maurice Corbett (Euroa/Melbourne) SRN: 2133 – 21st Battalion

James Cornish (Tungamah/Euroa) SRN: 2133 or 2133A -6th Battalion

Phil Cornish or “Nish” (Tungamah/Euroa) SRN: 76 -22nd Battalion Stretcher Bearer

George Cowell (Euroa) SRN: 183 -14th Battalion/4th Pioneer Battalion

Alex Crisfield (Great Western/Fairfield) SRN: 2531 -3rd Pioneer Battalion

Walter Crisfield (Great Western/Fairfield) SRN: 2350 -2nd Pioneer Battalion

D

Louis Dargatz (Locksley/Euroa) SRN: 530 -6th Battalion

Norman Dargatz (Locksley/Euroa) SRN: 1904 -57th Battalion

William De Boos (Euroa) SRN: 363 -22nd Battalion

Arthur Draper (Euroa) SRN: 4225 -Heavy Battery 4th Division/4th Division Artillary

William Dunlop or Bill Dunlop (Bendigo/Euroa) SRN: 1826 -8th Training Battalion/ 37th Battalion

Ernie Dunn (Shepparton) SRN: 1165 -24th Battalion

William Dunstan (Ballarat) SRN: 2130 -7th Battalion

E

Harold Elliott or “Pompey” (Charlton/Northcote) SRN: Lieutenant Colonel -7th Battalion/15th Brigade

F

Tom Fitzgerald (Euroa) SRN: 22 -7th Headquarters Driver

Jack Footter or John Footter (Boho/Violet Town) SRN: 2174 -21st Battalion

Leslie Ford or Les Ford (Ceres/Euroa) SRN: 5331 -21st Battalion Headquarters Pay Corps

Jack Fothergill (Broadford/Collingwood/Euroa) SRN: 195 -6th Battalion

G

Keith Gardiner (Euroa) SRN: 1683 -5th Battalion

Archie Gascoyne (Euroa) SRN: 155 -22nd Battalion

George Gascoyne or “Bunny” Gascoyne (Euroa) SRN: 1942 -8th Battalion

George Frederick Glover or Ensign Glover (Euroa) SRN: 4112 -5th Pioneer Battalion

Les Grant (Narracan) SRN: 11 -7th Battalion

H

Charlie Hamilton (Albury/Euroa) SRN: 1149 -6th Battery/5th Division Artillery

Max Hanley or “Mac” Hanley (Euroa) SRN: 1008 -22nd Battalion

Maurice Harrison (Euroa) SRN: 1952 -14th Battalion

Tom Hastie (Clifton Hill) SRN: 2nd Lieutenant -Headquarters 2nd Infantry Brigade

Sam Hatty (Beveridge/Timboon) SRN: 279 -4th Light Horse

Harry Hayes (Longwood) SRN: 273 -1st Anzac Regiment/ 13th Light Horse Regiment

Henry Alfred Hayes (Euroa/Strathbogie) SRN: 834 -22nd Battalion

Charlie Hill (Winchelsea) SRN: 4729 -21st Battalion/2nd Division Salvage

Bert Hinton or “Judge” Hinton (Euroa) SRN: 516 -3rd Battalion/55th Battalion

Frank Hinton (Euroa) SRN: 907 -17th Battalion

I

Adolphus Ison or Dolf Ison(Perth) SRN: 2162 -14th Battalion

J

William Jamieson (Kyneton) SRN: 690 -7th Battalion

Arthur Johnston (Euroa/Balwyn) SRN: 600 -14th Battalion

Fred Johnston (Euroa) SRN: 598 -14th Battalion – Bugler

Robert Johnston or Bob Johnston (Euroa/Perth) SRN: 313 -28th Battalion -CQMS

William Johnston (Euroa) SRN: 10871 -Headquarters 3rd Division

Thomas Jones (Warrandyte/Longwood) SRN: 13 -7th Battalion Headquarters

K

Harold Kennedy (Euroa) SRN: 810 -7th Battalion

Ernie Kerslake (Euroa) SRN: 2026A -26th Battalion

Fred Kiellerup (Narrandera) SRN: 1047 -6th Battalion

Herbert Kong Meng (Melbourne/Longwood) SRN: 21 – Headquarters Light Horse

L

Joe Lavery (Euroa) SRN: 1742 -2nd Pioneer Battalion

James Leonard or Jim Leonard (Euroa) SRN: 393 -7th Battalion

Leo Leonard (Euroa) SRN: 900 -21st Battalion

Michael Leonard (Euroa/Fitzroy) SRN: 3083 -6th Battalion/58th Battalion

Tom Leonard (Richmond/Euroa) SRN: 172 -23rd Battalion/62nd Battalion

Edward Lewis or Eddie Lewis (Euroa) SRN: 1535 -24thBattalion

John Lewis or “Doc” Lewis (Sydney/Euroa) SRN: 5705 -7th Battalion

Tom Liddell (Euroa) SRN: 769 -23rd Battalion

Harold Locke (Euroa/Violet Town) SRN: 2nd Lieutenant -Cyclist

George Lydiard (Balmattum/Euroa) SRN: Lieutenant -13th Light Horse/ 5th Division Cavalry

M

Tom Mackrell (Nanaweeu) SRN: 662 -24th Battalion

Thomas Maher or Tom Maher (Euroa) SRN: 2921 -7th Battalion

William Maher (Avenel/Euroa) SRN: 2917 -7th Battalion

Gordon Maxfield (Longwood) SRN: 2nd Lieutenant -21st Battalion

Leslie Maygar (England/Longwood) SRN: Captain -4th or 8th Light Horse

Charles McCombe (Euroa) SRN: 189 -23rdBattalion/65th Battalion

Russell McCombe (Euroa) SRN: 190 -22ndBattalion or 23rd Battalion

George McCoombe (Euroa/Violet Town) SRN: 5058 -24th Battalion

Joseph McEntee (Beechworth/Euroa) SRN: 2103 -37th Battalion

Francis McFarlane (Violet Town) SRN: 1988 -7th Battalion C Co

William McGregor or Bill McGregor (Wangaratta) SRN: 1535 or 1535a -24th Battalion

Jack McIvor or John McIvor (Macorna) SRN: 1150 & 1568 -22nd Battalion/65th Battalion

George McLeod (Euroa) SRN: 2861 -PioneerBattalion

William McNay (Unknown) SRN: 1076 -6th Battalion Driver

Archie Morgan (Euroa) SRN: 370 -7th Battalion

Arthur Morgan (Euroa) SRN: 225 -21st Battalion

Bert Morgan (Euroa) SRN: 2037 -22nd Battalion

William J.P. Morgan (Euroa) SRN: 893 -14th Battalion -Bugler

Stanley Muir (Elsternwick) SRN: 152 -4th Light Horse/68th Flying Squad

N

William Nowotna or Bill Nowotna (Dunkeld/Euroa) SRN: 567 – 13th Light Horse

O

John O’Connor (Melbourne) SRN:875 -22nd Battalion

David Owen (Benalla) SRN: 320 -4th Light Horse

P

Arthur Parker (Ballarat/Euroa) SRN: 294 & 9748 -Hospital Transport Corps/ 13th Field Ambulance

William Pezet or Will Pezet or Bill Pezet (Euroa/Bacchus Marsh) SRN: 403 -7th Battalion -Driver

Peter Pinder (Ireland/Gooram) SRN: 16 -7th Battalion Headquarters

Joe Power (Euroa) SRN: 609 -8th Light Horse

Hugh Prowd or Hughie Prowd (Bonnie Doon/Euroa) SRN 5808 -7th Battalion

R

Alexander Ramage (Violet Town) SRN: 5075 -24th Battalion

Edward Ramage (Violet Town) SRN: 701 -24th Battalion – Driver

Reg Ramage (Violet Town) SRN: 5076 -24th Battalion

Bill Rea (Boho/Queenscliff) SRN: 341 -7th Battalion – Signaller

Lindsay Cyril Reid (Deniliquin/Fitzroy) SRN: 989 -7th Battalion

Albert Riddle (Girgaree East/Euroa) SRN: 1637 -Naval & Military Expeditionary Force

S

Charlie Sanderson (Violet Town) SRN: 742 -4th Light Horse/4th Machine Gun Squadron

William Sargood or Bill Sargood (Euroa/Goorem) SRN: 4769 -24th Battalion

Bertie Saxon or Bert Saxon (Euroa/Violet Town) SRN: 2708 -2nd Pioneer Battalion

Francis Saxon (Brunswick/Euroa) SRN: 2384 -22nd Battalion

Joseph Saxon or Joe Saxon (Euroa) SRN: 1564 -22nd Battalion

William Saxon or Bill Saxon or “Shinner” Saxon (Euroa) SRN: 694 -7th Battalion – Stretcher Bearer

Thomas Saxon or Tom Saxon or “Sack” (Euroa/Violet Town) SRN: 485 -21st Battalion

Herb Sephton (Carlton) SRN: 1188 -7th Battalion

Ernie Sheppard (Euroa) SRN: 2273 & 1556 -24th Battalion

George Slow (England/Rutherglen) SRN: 960 -7th Battalion – Stretcher Bearer

Jack Stevenson or John Stevenson (Violet Town) SRN: 2260 -21st Battalion

James Stevenson (Violet Town) SRN: 341 -4th Light Horse/2nd ANZAC Light Horse

Joe Stevenson (Violet Town/Boho) SRN: 2258 -21st Battalion

Ralph Stevenson (Violet Town) SRN: 907 -22nd Battalion

William Stevenson (Violet Town) SRN: 342 -4th Light Horse

T

Eric Thewlis or Rick Thewlis (Locksley/Euroa) SRN: 69-13th Light Horse/1st ANZAC Army Corp

Frank Tubb (Longwood) SRN: 8 -7th Battalion -Transport – Special Forces

Frederick Tubb or Fred Tubb (Longwood) SRN: Lieutenant -7th Battalion Headquarters

Brian Turner or “Buster” Turner (Euroa) SRN: 3283 -24th Battalion

Theophilus Twomey or Ted Twomey (Euroa) SRN: 2701 -26th Battalion

U

Jack Underwood or John Underwood (Violet Town) SRN: 356 -4th Light Horse

W

Dave Wakenshaw (Balmattum/Euroa) SRN: 1041 & 2030B -8th Light Horse/4th Division Artillery

Phil Wale (Benalla) SRN: 1040 -7th Battalion

Albert Wall or Bert Wall (Gowangardie/Violet Town/Molka) SRN: 269 -22nd Battalion

John Wall (Violet Town/Molka) SRN: 270 -22nd Battalion

Roger Wall (Gowangardie/Violet Town/Molka) SRN: 271 -22nd Battalion

Harold Weatherhead or “Long-un” (Camperdown/Euroa) SRN: 303 -7th Battalion – Stretcher Bearer/Anzac Provisional Corp

Jack Weatherhead (Allansford) SRN: 298 -8th Light Horse

Jim Webb or James Webb (Dunnolly/Euroa) SRN: 359 -4th Light Horse

Louis Webb (Mooroopna/Rheola) SRN: 1610 -6th Battalion

George Whitechurch (Avenel) SRN: 645 -4th Light Horse

William Whitechurch (Avenel/Seymour) SRN: 2254 -8th Battalion

Clarence Wignell (Euroa) SRN: 20 -7th Battalion

Everard Wignell (Euroa) SRN: 19 -7th Battalion

Jack Wiltshire or John Wiltshire (Longwood/Caldermeade) SRN: 866 -23rd Battalion

Roy Wiltshire or Aubery Wiltshire (Longwood/Armadale) SRN: 2nd Lieutenan -22ndBattalion

Jack Wynn or John Wynn (Scotland/Euroa) SRN: 1501 & 1630 -22nd Battalion”

 

Herbert John OXLEY (1919 – 1943)

Herbert John OXLEY and his twin brother William Reid OXLEY were born in New Zealand on the 5th of April 1919 to Australian-born father Hubert OXLEY and New Zealand-born mother Amelia Beatrice nee BENJAMIN.
In the New Zealand Ballot list for 1940, Herbert’s occupation was  listed as process engraving and he lived in Richardson Road, Mount Roskill.
photo courtesy of the Mount Roskill People 1840 to 1940 Facebook page

 

Today is the anniversary eve of the death of Herbert who was killed in action in Europe on air operations on the 4th of April 1943. His last rank was Sergeant in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, 485 (NZ) Squadron, RAF, service number 412725.
Along with other Mount Roskill residents who gave their lives, Herbert is commemorated on the town’s War Memorial.
‘Mt Roskill War Memorial Park’, URL: http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/media/photo/mt-roskill-war-memorial-park, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 1-Dec-2015licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 New Zealand Licence.
Memorials for Herbert are at Runnymede Memorial, Surrey, United Kingdom, Auckland War Memorial Museum, World War 2 Hall of Memories and Mt Roskill War Memorial, War Memorial Park, 13 May Road, Mt Roskill, Auckland.
http://www.cwgc.org/
Huge thanks to cousins and fellow family history researchers Shelley Chambers and Denise McCracken.
Herbert’s grandmother was Emma MORGAN (1840-1903).
Maternal great-great-grand aunt of Shelley and myself and great-grand-aunt of Denise.
Shelley’s sleuthing for this branch of our family paid off big time.
It is wonderful being part of such a team and to share the thrill of family history research with like-minded cousins.

Hubert OXLEY (1882-1969)

Hubert OXLEY was born in Kilmore, Victoria, Australia on the 4th of December 1882, the youngest son of John OXLEY and Emma nee MORGAN.  Emma, my great-great-grand-aunt, born in Abergavenny, Wales was the eldest daughter of my maternal 3rd great-parents, John MORGAN and Sarah nee BLOUNT.

By 1914, Hubert was living in New Zealand as in that year he married New Zealand girl Amelia Beatrice BENJAMIN.  She was born in New Plymouth in 1883 and died in Auckland in 1961.

At the outbreak of World War One, Hubert was a Head Waiter working for the Royal Hotel in Auckland.  His address was first written in as 71 Burnley Terrace, Auckland and at some later stage that was crossed out and recorded as Richardson road, Mt Roskill.

He enlisted into the 1st battalion E Company of the New Zealand Rifle Brigade on the 19th of October 1915 and in March 1916 was transferred to the 2nd Battalion Auckland Regiment.

On enlistment Hubert was nearly 33 years old.  He was 5 feet 8 inches tall with brown eyes, fair hair and fair complexion.

Hubert’s total period of war service was 3 years and 214 days.  Of these, 1 year and 85 days were served in New Zealand and 2 years and 129 days overseas.  Part of 1916 he spent in the Egyptian and 1916, 17 and 18 in the Western European theatres of war.

April 1916 saw Hubert embark for France on what looks like the ship ASCANIUS.

In May 1916, he went AWOL and had to forfeit 3 days pay.

On the 21st of February 1917, according to the court of enquiry at St. Clotilde, Douai Hubert was officially reported missing believed wounded .  He was captured at Armentieres.

Photo from NZ Heritage Images

“Wounded at Fleurbaix by bullet, during a raid on enemy line.  Hit in German front line trench, and taken unconcious as a prisoner of war to Douai hospital, arm operated on by German M.O at Douai 23 Feb 1917, head of right humerus removed and also fragments of upper end of shaft of humerus.  Wounds discharged freely for six months.  Sent to England as “Exchange Prisoner” 6 January 1918, admitted Walton 10 January 1918.”– from War service record

Hubert was repatriated to Rotterdam, England by the central prisoners of war committee at St Clotilde Douai Germany.  He was admitted to the military hospital at Tooting and later the Number 2 New Zealand hospital at Walton on Thames.

He embarked for New Zealand on the Athenic.
Amelia had to write to ask where to send mail to her husband.
from War service record
from War service record
Below are news articles found in New Zealand papers
 AUCKLANDER’S EXPERIENCE.
TREATMENT IN HOSPITAL.
Interesting experiences of the life of a prisoner of war in Germany are related in letters received by Mrs. H. Oxley, of Norman Street, Rocky Nook, from her husband, Private Hubert Oxley, who, when his last letter was written, on January 19, was a patient in the Walton on Thames Hospital.
“Our battalion,” writes Private Oxley, raided their trenches, near Armentieres on February 21, 1917. It was a successful raid. About 50 prisoners were taken, and I saw many dead behind their lines later in the day. Our company had to go to their support. The German artillery plastered their front line as soon as our guns opened on to their trenches, so they must have known a raid was on. Just over their front trench I was badly hit. I got it in both arms, legs, back, and shoulder. When I came to my senses it was daylight. Half-a-dozen ‘Jerries’ were firing over the top of me, and then they took cover. Our artillery opened again, and I laid there, expecting to go up. and wondered how long 1 would have to wait.
“When tilings quietened I was taken away to a dressing-station behind their lines, and I remembered being put into a motor-ambulance. I think it must have been the following morning I found myself in a hospital bed. They gave me something to drink, then carried me to the operating room, and two officers plied me with questions, a third looked on and listened, whilst a fourth, a doctor, worked at my back. I heard something ring on the marble slab; it was a splinter, and of no small size. They gave me brandy, and dressed my wounds, and I was put in a ward near the operating theatre. They got no information from me other than my regiment and number. Two days later I was operated on, and a tube put through me to avoid the discharge going to the lung. I was well treated here. There were about 20 other New Zealanders wounded with me, but mine, being the worse case, I was watched and given special food to enable me to recover.
Thankful to Escape Alive.
I remained there eight weeks, then when the ridge push started they cleared the hospital, thinking no doubt Douai would be captured. We expected to see our troops come. Many shells fell around the place. Norman Faithful and I were sent into Germany to Julich. The rest of the fellows were sent to other places; some, who were well enough, to working camps. They carried us in stretchers to the ambulance cars, and the French people loaded us with cigarettes, bread, eggs, and underclothing. Some of the Germans were brutal keeping the crowd back, but they never interfered with anything that was given to me. We had a two days train journev to Julich. That was a hell. We were there five months, insufficient and bad food and dirt. I was thankful to escape alive from there. We were fed on two slices of black bread, some artificial coffee, and something they called soup each day. We went boxing on for three months like this; then I got my first parcel.
The wounds would not heal owing to the inferior food, and I developed a serious illness that pinned me down tighter to the bed. I lost power in my limbs; I could not see, could not speak. An Englishman used to feed me, and my wounds started discharging worse than ever. The two doctors there said I would live four weeks or five, but no longer. Then, as a last resource, they carried me out in the sun, and I lay in it nearly all day, my wounds being dressed in the evening. Old Sol closed the wounds up in just four weeks, and then I got more parcels, and began to improve, but I still couldn’t move my arms or legs, or see very well, so they sent me to a doctor in Aachen, for nerves, they said, was my trouble.
Very Few Parcels Received.
“Arrived at Aachen, I began to improve. The nurses were kind and attentive. and the doctors good, but there was a lack of food, and very few parcels found me, except one lot. However, I got electric massage and baths there, and by the time I was able to walk I was informed that I would be exchanged.”
In a letter written at sea, and dated January 4, 1918, Private Oxley relates further experiences.
“I am in perfect health now,” he says, “with the exception of my right arm, and that annoys me but I think I should be thankful because there are some terrible cases on the ship, and I have no pain to suffer. The doctor says it will get all right again, probably in 12 months, and I think I will have an operation in England.
“The Dutch people are all right; they have treated our party very kindly. It feels good to look around now and see kindly faces and hear of our mother tongue. The absence of the spiked helmet and the fixed bayonet is greatly appreciated.
Fare on Christmas Day.
“I have been six weeks on the go since first the Germans told me I was for exchange. I had just been two months at Aachen, where I had arrived from Julich Lazarette, after spending five months in the latter place-five months that are likely to live in my memory, for it was an awful place for lice, dirt, starvation, and death. I wrote to the High Commissioner from there, and so did Faithful. I think our letters must have got through to England, and he claimed us, because it was a great surprise to us when we were bundled off. The Germans had often told us we wouldn’t get exchanged. You know, I lived like a hot-house plant, indoors for months. I began getting my parcels in July, and in two weeks I was fat by just allowing myself a little of something good and refreshing each day.
I received only two of your parcels, but they were much appreciated.  Great excitement reigned in my ward on November 25. “Oxley for exchange.”  So started off from Aachen to Cologne, then a train ride to Coblenz, then to Mannheim internment camp, where I spent three months and two days, and I believe I’d have starved had I not dropped across one of the old prisoners who had been in Germany since Mons. He was getting his parcels, but he fed half a dozen of us there, so there was not much. Our parcels, of course, never followed us, and we were in hopes of getting away before Christmas, so we soon ran out of food, and began selling our shirts and socks to the French for biscuits. These also were not to be procured after a day or two, so there was nothing for it but to dine on some horse bean soup. On Christmas I Day it was flavoured with fishes’ roes.
“A big batch of Italians are in this camp, and it would make your heart ache to see them, they are just kept from starvation. The searching operations commenced, and lasted a day in this camp. The Germans went through all one possessed; searched the lining of our coats, etc.. and then we started on an all-night journey to Cologne, and my, didn’t it freeze in that train. Arrived at Cologne, we changed trains, and then were dumped once more in Aachen remained there three days, underwent another search we got good food and plenty of it here – and then put on a comfortable hospital train, and finally alighted in Rotterdam.

One of the first New Zealand soldiers to be released from captivity in Germany was Private Hubert Oxley, of the 2nd Auckland Battalion, who recently returned to the Dominion. He was severely wounded during a raid at Fleuxbaix in February, 1917, and was taken prisoner. Under the arrangements for the repatriation of disabled soldiers. Private Oxley was released at the end of last year, his right arm having been rendered virtually useless by the wounds he had received. His experience during the 11 months he spent as a prisoner of war have been related by the returned soldier.
Describing the raid, Private Oxley stated that he had just reached the German front line, or what remained of it after the preliminary bombardment when he was struck by a piece of shell and “knocked out.” Although he did not immediately lose consciousness, he was unable to move. “When the firing from our guns had quietened down,” Private Oxley continued, “about a dozen Germans emerged from their retirement and came straight towards me. Two of them came over, and, after relieving me of my bombs, half-dragged me to an advanced dressing station in their subsidiary line. There I was left lying outside for a good two hours, until the last of their own wounded had received attention.

WOUNDED OFFERED FOOD.

“It was while at this place that I learned that I was not the only New Zealander who had been unlucky enough to be taken prisoner. Eventually our turn came, and in the course of a hurried patching up I found I was badly hit in legs, arms, shoulder, and body.
After this I was wheeled in a truck for about two miles to a clearing station, where I lay for the remainder of the day. At this place ample evidence of the deadly effects of our morning’s work was to be seen in the crowds of wounded Germans. It was very cold, and I lay on my plank waiting and shivering. Several times Red Cross men offered me coffee and bread, but I refused, being too ill to eat. They covered me with blankets, and in due course my turn came to be dressed.
From then on I only seem to have a hazy recollection of occurrences. I remember a motor ambulance, and some of our fellows saying something to me—a great deal of bustle and excitement, and strange faces at another stage of the journey. Also, I remember calling for water, and a kind nurse’s face watching over me as she put the drink to my lips! Next I awoke in a comfortable bed, and a very tall man in white was looking intently at me. Again I was offered food and refused.

EXPERIENCE IN HOSPITAL.

“Later I was removed to the operating table, where two orderlies held me in a sitting posture while the surgeon proceeded to operate on my shoulder, and probe for pieces of shell. While this was in progress, three military officers appeared on the scene. Two of them plied me with questions, and the third—a good listener—said nothing, but kept his eyes full on mine. Upon receiving no satisfaction from their inquiries, one of them adopted a fierce expression and tried to bounce me into answering. His threats did not worry me, for I was thinking more about the pain the doctor was inflicting on my shoulder. Presently I heard something fall with a ring on the marble slab, and I knew I had been relieved of a piece of shell. I nearly fainted, and the doctor, after giving me some brandy, finished dressing my wounds, and I was carried into a ward near the operating room.  Here I recognised Norman Faithfull, of my own company; Fred Kemp, whose leg had just been amputated; Frank Doyle, of the Haurakis; and Matthew Rasmussen, of the 101 Waikatos.
“A few days after, I underwent an operation. As I was the worst case among our boys I was given cocoa and one piece of white French bread and jam for breakfast, a good basin of minced meat and mashed potatoes for the midday meal, at 3 p.m., another slice of white bread and jam, and a cup of coffee (artificial), and at night a piece of bread, a basin of barley, macaroni, or vegetable soup, or perhaps gruel. The others received the same rations, but black bread, no cocoa, and at mid-day instead of meat and potatoes, they received a mug of soup.
“This was at Douai, France, where we remained for some weeks. I had eight wounds, and sometimes lay for seven days without having them dressed.  We were visited by a German pastor, and occasionally by a Roman Catholic priest. Russian orderlies brought us water for washing, but there was no soap, and I had mud on my hands and face for many weeks. Every Sunday the French people of Douai sent us three cigarettes and somthing which tasted like plum pudding. It was just the length of one’s finger and coated with chocolate. We used to call it our Sunday tit-bit, and certainly it was very nice. There were funerals every day. The courtyard was just under our windows, we could hear the service being read in German, then the departure of the horses. The French populace always attended the funerals in large numbers.

ECHO OF BRITISH OFFENSIVE.

“At the end of the fifth week most of the New Zealanders had recovered, and were sent to different camps. About the end of the seventh week I noticed a change in the Germans about the place. They were very excited, and argumentive with one another, and from what I could gather the cause of this was fresh news from the battlefront. Also I noticed some British prisoners being brought in. An orderly told us that the British were near, and, taking them by surprise, had captured much ground. The Germans began to pack up and remove the prisoners into Germany. By the end of the eighth week we were awakened one morning by a terrific bombardment which shook every window in the place. This was the Vimy Ridge
affair. Our aeroplanes, too, had been busy, having destroyed part of the railway station and other points of importance.  All the New Zealanders had now been removed, with the exception of Faithfull and myself.
“On April 18 we were carried to the railway station, the hospital by this time having been practically cleared. During our journey to the station we must have presented a curious sight to the French inhabitants, as our hair and whiskers had grown very long during our confinement. The French rushed us with gifts, giving to each one a bag containing shirts, socks, towel, soap, and cigarettes, and some of the Frenchmen in their enthusiasm tore off their hats and coats and gave them to us, as we were very poorly clad. They also gave us some bread, biscuits, and raw eggs, and one lady, seeing me in my helpless condition, removed her coat and wrapped it round me. The Germans did not interfere with these acts of kindness, but in some instances they showed great brutality in keeping the crowds back. Alas, these were the last good things we were to receive for some time.

TRANSFERRED TO GERMANY.

“After a journey of two days through France and Belgium, we arrived at Julich, 40 miles beyond Aix-la-Chappelle on April 20. On the journey our food consisted of grain, black bread and coffee. We were removed on stretchers from the train to the hospital, a distance of about a mile. The lateness of the hour—midnight—did not prevent a large crowd of German civilians from gathering around. There was no hostile demonstration—they merely looked on in silence. I was still shivering with the severe cold, and I indicated this to a German, who was helping to carry my stretcher, and he made it his business to procure a coat and wrap it round me. We arrived at last at the hospital, which, like the one at Douai, was for prisoners only. Here were congregated about 50 French and British and from 250 to 300 Russians, and I could not fail to be impressed with the way in which the Russians were utilised to do practically all the hospital work. There were no nurses. The British were distributed all over the place, and I found my bed situated between two Russians.
“And now for a few words about the food. I cannot speak of every hospital and camp where the Germans house their prisoners but I know of five hospitals and one camp, and they are all on a par.
When we opened our eyes in Julich, the first morning we were handed one slice of black bread. I would not like to guess its composition, but it constituted one’s breakfast, together with some vile, black coffee. What did we have for dinner? One day it would be a weak solution of macaroni, another day sauerkraut, or turnip tops. Preserved vegetables were also served out, and they were most objectionable. In the drying process they seemed to have been smothered with charcoal, or some such stuff, and these pieces were thickly scattered all through the food, and it was impossible to remove them.”

IMPRESSIONS OF GERMANS.

Towards the end of the summer Private Oxley had sufficiently recovered to be able to walk, and was then able to take more interest in his surroundings “Business seemed to be dead, traffic almost at a standstill, and the few motor cars I did see bore the Government crest. Old and young men alike were in uniform. Not once did I see a limbless soldier, for the Germans kept their maimed well out of sight. The men, women, and children looked pale and hollow-cheeked, although this part of the town was of the better class. It was no uncommon sight to see children begging from door to door. Before our capture we had often heard stories of the efficiency of German organisation. All I can say is that, so far as my observation went, this state of efficiency did not exist in the hospitals I have seen. At this place in particular the sanitation was disgraceful. There was vermin everywhere—in our beds, clothing, and even in the bandages covering my wounds. They were one Iong nightmare,’ and I shall never forget my feelings of relief when I was moved away. Geese and ducks were allowed to roam about the enclosure, which greatly added to the unhealthy state of the place. The Germans even used the dinner bowls from our wards to feed the poultry.”
Private Oxley again succumbed to illness, and until his recovery was attended with the most kindly care by a Scotch soldier. There was much sickness at the hospital, especially among the Russians, and many deaths occurred.  ”In connection with any burials of our men, I would like to say that those of our fellows who were able were allowed to follow the remains, and were given any available khaki. To give the Germans their due, every cortege included a guard of honour and a military band, and they themselves always acted as pall-bearers.”

Hubert’s final discharge as permanently unfit was dated 20th of May 1919.  He was awarded a war pension.
From 1928, he and Amelia were living in Richardson Road, Roskill, Auckland.  Hubert was a gardener until 1954 he was listed as retired in the electoral roll.

OXLEY ashes tablet Waikumete Cemetery courtesy of

Parents of Mary HULME nee WOOD (1788-1875)

Mary HULME, nee WOOD, is my maternal 4th great grandmother.

She married Daniel HULME at St Pancras Old Church on the 1st of January 1810.

Mary died at Fulham on the 13th of March 1875, age 87 years which puts her birth year around 1788.

In all the census from 1841 to 1871 Mary HULME was a Grocer at 65 High Street, Fulham.

The 1841 census for Fulham stated she was not born in the county.
The 1851 census stated she was born in Fulham
The 1861 census stated she was born in Hertfordshire.
The 1871 census stated she was born in Puckeridge, Hertfordshire.

In the 1861 census living in the same household is her sister, a widow age 65 by the name of Matha (sic) Mary MEAD.  She was born at Leatherhead, Surrey.  As yet I haven’t found a WOOD/MEAD marriage but the Leatherhead, St. Mary and St. Nicholas Surrey births and baptisms has a record for Martha WOOD born March 18 and baptised April 5, 1795.
Her parents were William WOOD and Mary RADLEY.

Even though Leatherhead is about 20 miles South-West of London and Puckeridge about 30 miles North, I searched around Puckeridge, Hertfordshire for a baptism for Mary WOOD about 1788 and found her listed with parents William and Mary at Standon which is a village adjoining Puckeridge.  No mother’s maiden name though.

I then looked for a marriage for William WOOD and Mary RADLEY and found it registered also at Standon in 1788.

I am quietly confident that I have finally found my 5th great grandparents are William WOOD and Mary RADLEY, the parents of Mary HULME nee WOOD!

Also in the Leatherhead, St. Mary and St. Nicholas Surrey births and baptisms with parents William WOOD and Mary RADLEY were Ann born 13th Feb 1798, baptised 4th March 1798 and Charlotte born 3rd March 1801, baptised 29 March 1801.

Help needed: do you recognise these WWII servicemen?

Thanks for sharing this Su.

Shaking the tree

presto-av-ffd2e8b379c190f9c9687360aca1b1349a9eaf2dPortrait of American serviceman stationed in Warkworth, New Zealand, WWII. Photo: Tudor Collins. Digitized by Auckland Museum.

The Auckland Museum has just digitized and released a whole bunch of photographs taken during WWII by a local photographer, Tudor Collins. They all show American servicemen posted to the small town of Warkworth, New Zealand, prior to their deployment in the Pacific.

These are wonderful portraits of young men enjoying a few weeks of rest and Kiwi hospitality before being hurled into prolonged and ferocious fighting from which many did not return.

presto-av-7a0253516cc1743801b08807d16b85e9aa98be10Portrait of American servicemen stationed in Warkworth, New Zealand, WWII. Photo: Tudor Collins. Digitized by Auckland Museum.

None of the photos were captioned, so the identity of the soldiers is unknown. The Museum has loaded them onto its website and is asking anyone whose relatives served in the Pacific, and who spent (or might have spent) time in New…

View original post 102 more words

September is National Suicide Prevention month.

Read Jeanette’s informative blog post – R U OK?

Source: R U OK?

Lance Corporal Herbert John MORGAN born Herbert John WAKENSHAW.

Herbert Douglas WAKENSHAW was born at Euroa, Victoria in 1895.

He enlisted in the 22nd Battalion, 3rd reinforcement A.I.F # 2037 on the 19th of July 1915 under the name Herbert John MORGAN.

Next of kin was given as Mrs M Cowell (foster mother) of Euroa.

Herbert died of wounds on the 7th of August 1916 at the 4th Field Ambulance in France.

Herbert’s mother was Miss Emily Wakenshaw, but no father was listed in his birth registration.
I would love to see a copy of his birth certificate one day.
According to her death registration, Emily’s parents were John Wakenshaw and Elizabeth Vidler Wakenshaw nee HEWISH.
She was born at Euroa in 1875 so was 19 or 20 years old when Herbert was born.  Emily had an older sister named Marion Elizabeth Vidler WAKENSHAW who married George COWELL.
This would be the Mrs M Cowell listed as Herbert’s next of kin.
In 1897, when Herbert was about 2 years old, Emily married my great-grand-uncle, Alexander Frederick MORGAN.  Also in 1897 a sister for Herbert, Elizabeth Marion MORGAN, was born.  Her birth registration names Alexander as her father.
Three more children were born to Alexander and Emily.
George Alexander in 1899
Emily Grace in 1901
Isabella Ida in 1902.
Sadly within a fortnight of Isabella’s birth in 1902 Emily died of exhaustion and diarrhoea.
Seven years later, in 1909, Alexander MORGAN remarried Alice McCann who may have been formerly Alice Ryan. They had 4 children.
Violet born 1909
Benjamin born 1912
Frederick born 1912

Thomas born 1914

To be named as his foster mother, Herbert’s maternal aunt, Marion COWELL, may have raised him after his mother’s death and his “step-father’s” re-marriage.

Herbert was 5 foot 9 1/2 inches tall and weighed 11 stone 5 pounds.  He had a fresh complexion, grey eyes and brown hair.

On the 25th of August, 1915 at Melbourne, Herbert embarked on the HMAT Anchises A68.
On the25th of October 1915, he was taken on strength at Gallipoli Peninsular.
On the 2nd of December 1915, Herbert was in hospital at Heliopolis, under treatment for severe frostbite and mild rheumatism.  By the 8th of January 1916, he was at the Australian and New Zealand Convalescence Depot at Helouan and was discharged to duty on the 16th of January.

In early March, he rejoined his unit in the canal zone and proceeded to join the British Expeditionary Forces at Alexandria, Egypt. On the 26th of March, the unit disembarked at Marseilles, France.

On the night of the 29th-30th of June, Herbert’s company took part in a raid on the enemy’s trenches.

On the 30th of July he was appointed Lance Corporal and on the 5th of August was reported missing.
He had sustained shrapnel wounds to the legs and died of these wounds on the 7th of August 1916.
Herbert was buried at Warloy Baillon Communal Cemetery Somme, France,  Extension (Plot VII, Row E, Grave No. 56

After some correspondence with the war office, Marion was able to receive Herbert’s medals and wrote the following letter stating he was in her care after the death of his mother.

Via the ship “Beltana”, Marion Cowell received Herbert’s personal effects of – scissors, pipe, identity disc, booklet, tobacco pouch, mirror in case and letters.

The following notice appeared in the local newspaper, the Euroa Advertiser on the 8th of September, 1916.

22nd Australian Infantry Battalion

Lieutenant Colonel Allan Percy FLEMING (1912-2001)

When it was announced in September 1939 that Australia was once again at war, my mother’s cousin, Allan Percy FLEMING, like his father in WW1,  was eager to enlist immediately.  At that time, he was a journalist for the Brisbane Courier Mail and being a key member of the senior editorial staff, it took some time to organize a replacement and clear his work commitments.

In late October, along with two Irish pals, Allan went to the recruiting office at the Brisbane town hall.  His Irish mates were taken straight in but because Allan was already commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Cadet Corps he was told he would have to wait until someone called him up.  Not to be beaten, Allan flew back to Melbourne and without any mention of his commission, enlisted on the 3rd of November, into the 5th Battalion, the same unit as his father had served in, renamed as the 2/5th Battalion.

On enlistment, his next of kin was recorded as Albert Henry Percy FLEMING of 22 Beauchamp Street, Preston.  Allan’s war service saw him rise from the rank of Private to Lieutenant-Colonel, decorated, wounded twice, captured, escaped, mentioned in despatches and awarded a military OBE.

Allan did his training at Puckapunyal military camp in Central Victoria.  To his annoyance, he was placed on the switchboard instead of being handed a rifle for training.  After messing up the connections of a few phone calls such as putting a Brigadier through to a butcher and General Blamey through to the cook he accomplished his mission to be kicked out of brigade headquarters and back to his unit, the 2/5th Battalion.

On the 23rd of November that same year Allan was given his first promotion to Corporal.  His officers must have noticed his abilities as after being transferred to 2/8th Battalion’s 17th Brigade,* on the 28th of December he was promoted to Sergeant and on the same day was commissioned as a Lieutenant.  On the 14th of April 1940, the 17th Brigade embarked for the Middle East at Port Melbourne on the troopship Dunera, arriving on the 18th of May at El Kantara, Egypt.   *(The battalion was originally formed as part of the 17th Brigade of the 6th Australian Division, but in February it was decided to reorganise Australian infantry brigades along British lines, with three battalions instead of four. This meant the 2/8th was eventually transferred to the 19th Brigade but remained part of the 6th Division.)

To greet him as he disembarked at Port Said was his fiance, Margaret Elsie MORELL nee PATTERSON.  Margaret’s divorce from Scott Morell had just been finalized and in a courageous act and against many obstacles, she and her friend Edna Harwood traveled to Egypt to meet Allan’s ship.

After quite a few further obstacles, Allan and Margaret were married at Tel Aviv on the 19th of June 1940 in the first AIF Middle East wedding of World War 2.

Margaret was now listed as his next of kin and her address given as C/- The Ritz Hotel, Hayarkon St Tel Aviv.  Later address was recorded as 82 Burke Road, East Malvern, Victoria.

Over the next weeks, Allan’s battalion moved from Tel Aviv to Qastina and on to the Gaza Strip. During this Libyan Campaign, Allan was transferred from his platoon to be appointed Battalion Intelligence Officer because of his navigational experience learned in the Scouts. It didn’t involve the usual intelligence work as such, but it was dangerous work  gathering information of specifics about the enemy’s position.  The Battalion moved on through battles at Bardia, Tobruk, where they suffered heavy casualties and on to Benghazi on the 6th of February 1941.  The Italians surrendered the next day.

By early April 1941 they were in Greece trying in vain to stop the German invasion. A fierce battle was fought at Vevi in the North under appalling conditions, but the German force was too strong and retreat was ordered.  Major Vasey later claimed that a large percentage of the 2/8th battalion had thrown away their weapons during the retreat.

Even into his old age, Allan Fleming was angry about this and continued to campaign to clear his battalion’s name from the slur in Vasey’s war diary about their retreat from Vevi.  Fleming gave his opinion in an oral history interview to Hank Nelson in 1990 for the Australian War Memorial and official war historian Gavin Long states that Vasey’s harsh statement was not all true.

Long wrote about how Allan had remained behind after his brigade had left to gather ‘stragglers’ who were lost and so scattered around the area that they would have had no idea where the rest of their battalion was.  He was at the front line directing and making sure the retreating troops knew what to do and how to get out.  A commanding officer spotted him and asked what he was doing, saying “We have to get the hell out of here, we’ll all be killed if we stay!”  When told that Allan was staying to direct the boys the Officer said he wasn’t going to stay and left.

On the 18th of April, Allan was injured in a bomb blast but made light of it and returned to duty within a few days.

In November 1941 Allan Fleming and Arch Molloy were taken prisoner by the Germans and met with Rommel.  An account was given in his obituary in 2001.

Allan Fleming Obit

From mid-1942 Allan ceased to be seconded to the 2/8th Battalion and was transferred to Air support control where he spent ten months as an instructor to train a small band of Australians to be air liaison officers.

Mid 1943 saw him promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel and he returned to active duty in command of New Guinea Force Air Liaison Group at Port Moresby with whom he flew many missions.

By June 1944, Allan had relinquished command of this Air Liaison Group and was appointed GSO 1 (Air) Advanced Echelon, Land Headquarters in Melbourne where he was directly responsible to Lieutenant-General Frank Berryman.  In 1945 he was “Mentioned in Despatches”.

mention in despatches snip

The fourteenth of January 1946 saw Allan Fleming granted an honorable discharge from the A.I.F and his distinguished service was recognized a few weeks with the Order of the British Empire (Military).

obe 1

In October of that year Allan was made an accredited war correspondent for the Herald Newspaper in Melbourne.  He was sent to Tokyo to cover the war crimes tribunal.  His later commissions included reorganising Australia’s defence intelligence, trade commissioner in Paris, representing Australia in international trade negotiation and next, the greatest switch of all, to Commonwealth parliamentary librarian and, most controversially, to National Librarian.

After he retired Allan was back at work setting up Australia’s first counter-terrorist organisation.

Allan Fleming Obit Age

Author Peter Golding, in his book “An Unqualified Success: The Extraordinary Life of Allan Percy Fleming”  gives a wonderfully detailed account of Allan’s war service and his life.

Lance Corporal William Arthur MITCHELL

William Arthur MITCHELL was the son of James MITCHELL  and Janet “Jessie” nee MASON.  He was born at Stawell in 1896, the second youngest child of five siblings and eight half-siblings. Jessie MASON was a younger sister of my maternal great-great grandmother, Agnes MASON.

He enlisted as a private in the 5th Battalion, 2nd reinforcements at Broadmeadows, Victoria on the 30th of October 1914.  He was 19 years and 2 months of age.  Next of kin was his mother Jessie MITCHELL of Princes Street, Stawell, Victoria.

William was five foot nine inches tall and weighed eleven stone one pound.
His complexion was dark with brown eyes and dark brown hair.

For some reason, he has two attestation forms and two service numbers, 1389 and 1266.  One attestation form lists his father James Mitchell as next of kin but has no service number, unit information or date joined although the form itself was dated the 30th October 1914 at the bottom of the page.

war service records at National Archives of Australia

The second attestation paper gave next of kin as his mother, Jessie MITCHELL of the same address as James.

war service records at National Archives of Australia

William was admitted to hospital several times during his service.

In June 1915 at Dardanelles on the Gallipoli Peninsula, he sustained a slight gunshot wound to the scalp and was admitted to the 15th General hospital at Mudros.

In August, he suffered a bout of dysentery and then in September 1915 embarked to England on the HMT Huntsend. Later in September he was admitted “sick” to the 1st southern general hospital Birmingham.

In early April 1916 he was back in Alexandria also on the HMT Huntsend and a couple of days later was back in hospital in Cairo.

By the end of April 1916, William was suffering “Fits” perhaps from the gunshot wound to his head.  He was admitted to hospital again, this time at Heliopolis and was discharged due to epilepsy.  On the 10th of June 1916, he embarked from Suez to Australia on HMAT Itonus.

Photo of the HMAT Itonus from the State Library of Victoria http://handle.slv.vic.gov.au/10381/28533
A.I.F Project

In 1917, William married Edith Alberta BOYLE and they  had three sons.  Jack Stirling Mitchell b 1918, Ivor William Mitchell b 1920 and Roy Douglas Mitchell b 1921.  Edith died at Stawell in 1928 and William remarried Hazel Joan ROBINSON in 1939.  They had one son.

In a form dated 12th July 1967 William’s widow Hazel, since remarried and with surname Moy, applied for his Gallipoli medallion.
On the bottom of the form Hazel writes – I have Anzac Star, General Service and Victory Medals, in my keeping for my son Allan George Mitchell for whom I am claiming the Gallipoli Medallion.

On the 18th of July 1967 a letter was sent to Central Army Records Office from Mr R.D. Mitchell 16 Railway Avenue Ashwood, also applying for the Gallipoli medallion.
Dear Sirs,
I hereby apply for the Anzac Medallion as mentioned in the newspapers. My father, William Arthur Mitchell, served with the fifth Battalion in the first Word War.
Army Nos 1389-1266, William Arthur Mitchell.
yours truly Roy Mitchell.

I don’t know who got the medallion.  It would have been whoever was classed as the closest relative.  Perhaps Roy being the eldest son may have.

Archibald William Findlay Fleming

This is how I best remember my maternal grandfather, “Gramp” Archie Fleming, tinkering in his shed.

He used to tell tall stories and I would listen, totally enthralled … as I got a bit older I started to realize that these stories were a bit far fetched ….. but I loved them anyway.

The sad thing is I can’t remember them now.

I do remember bits of one where he told something about hundreds of cockatoos perching on a dead tree and when the farmer fired off his shotgun they all took flight at once and took the tree with them.

I used to love going to Nana and Gramps for school holidays.  They seemed to move around a lot.  They lived for a time at Edi Upper in Northern Victoria.  I’m not sure what Gramp did for a living there.  I took this photo at Edi Upper in about 1974 or 5 I think.

I fondly remember long drives from Shepparton to Melbourne (no freeways then), sometimes towing a caravan, and coming over Pretty Sally  at night to see the lights of Melbourne in front of us.  I loved the years he was a greenskeeper at the Northern Golf Club at Glenroy, Victoria and they lived in the “house” upstairs above the Clubrooms.

I have fond memories of Gramp taking us “rabbiting” even though I was so scared of his ferrets and their sharp sharp teeth but they were tucked away safely in the ferret boxes he made that had big straps so he could sling them over his shoulder for the long walks over the hills.

In his 60s Gramp ended up with diabetes.  He had a corn or callous on his foot that a chiropodist cut back but because of the diabetes his foot never healed and gangrene set it.  The foot was amputated but the gangrene spread further into the leg.  Eventually they took it off at the knee.  I’m not sure if it was a front for us kids but Gramp was always very brave and always jocular about his “stump” as he called it. He couldn’t wait to get his new “wooden” leg.  The leg was finally made and fitted and he was learning to walk with not too many problems.  He even had his HR Holden modified so he could still drive it.

I’m pretty sure it was only months later that I was called out of my class at the local TAFE college to be met by my Auntie with the horrible news that Gramp had just suffered a major heart attack and died at home that morning. He was only 68 years old.

Gramp owned a white HR Holden identical to this one

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 674 other followers