34th BATTALION MEMBER: Private Thomas Dix, from Hamilton, killed in action in Belgium May 29, 1917. Photo: The Digger’s View by Juan Mahony.
Newcastle Morning Herald transcriptions and Hunter Valley enlistment and death details for June 25-July 1,1917.
US TROOPS IN FRANCEA huge company of American troops arrived in France last week and an enthusiastic welcome is being prepared for them.The dark, upstanding hulls of the great transports with their escorting cruisers and destroyers, made an impressive picture as they slowly steamed up to the deserted quays. The French populace had no idea the United States troops were crossing the Atlantic. The news quickly spread, and great crowds immediately gathered. The American soldiers and the populace exchanged heartfelt cheers, and enthusiastic welcomes, which were repeated again and again during the day.The weather throughout was calm, and the journey without events, the German submarines having evidently no inkling of the movement. The troops arrived in splendid condition.
HOLMAN AT SALISBURYMr W.A. Holman, the Premier of NSW, spent the weekend with the troops on Salisbury Plain, England, as the guest of Major-General Mackay.He visited the various training units, and addressed the men, who gave him an enthusiastic welcome.MrHolman was impressed with the excellent arrangements for the men’s feeding and recreation. He visited the hospitals, and was gratified at the health, condition, and physique of the men. The new arrivals appeared to be well up to the standard of the earlier Anzac contingents.He will spend next weekend with the ns on the West Front.
RECRUITING QUESTIONIt is likely that in the new recruiting scheme, ‘s duty in the direction of reinforcing our men at the front will be met by a quota of between 7000 and 8000 per month.During the conscription campaign last year 16,500 men monthly were asked for, but experience has shown since then that this total was above that required to reinforce the units at their present strength. Actual requirements, it is believed, could be met by barely half that figure. Some such task would probably be set to accomplish. ‘s monthly average this year has been about 5000.
DISTRICT FIRE BRIGADESA meeting of the captains, officers-in-charge, and other representatives of the district fire brigades was held at Newcastle Headquarters Fire Station on Saturday, to consider the formation of an organisation in connection with the various patriotic movements in Newcastle and district. Mr T. Gorman, divisional officer, presided. After considerable discussion, it was resolved that the fire brigades form a Patriotic War League, to remain in existence for the period of the war, and that the committee consist of the permanent officers and the whole of the captains in A District, which embraces Wallsend, West Wallsend and Boolaroo. Divisional-officer T. Gorman was elected president, District-officer Hillier secretary, and Captain G. Anderson (New Lambton) treasurer. Suggestions in regard to the creation of a standing fund for the league were approved. The machinery for conducting the business of the league was given attention to.
ABERMAINMr Jim Garratt’s communication, offering to put on a benefit entertainment monthly to assist the widows and orphans of Abermain, whose bread-winners had fallen at the front was received by citizens’ committee, and secretary was instructed to write him, conveying best thanks of committee for his generous offer.A working bee was formed of Abermain miners, and on Saturday good work was done by lining the house, and erecting tank and building brick chimney for the wife of one of their late comrades, viz., MrsH. Williams, whose husband recently died from wounds received at the front. Some weeks or more ago another comrade’s wife’s house was removed and renovated. In the former case the necessary funds were advanced by the citizens’ committee.Mrand MrsR. Devon have received word from their son, Private Hugh Devon, stating he has received parcels from Abermain Ladies’ Comforts Fund Committee. The parcel contained just what he was in need of, and he expresses heartfelt thanks for same, and wished to be remembered to Abermain people.
DISTRICT CASUALTIESLieutenant Perrau. Mrs W. Perrau, of Turnbull St, Hamilton, has been informed that her son, Second Lieutenant R. D. Perrau, was killed in action on June 11.
Private Penrose. MrThomas Penrose, of Junction St, Merewether, has been informed that his brother; Private J. Penrose, was killed in action in France on June 7. Private Penrose was well known in football circles, and played with South Newcastle.
Private Read. Mr W. Read, of Wickham, has received word that his son, Private T. (Piper) Read, was killed in action on June 9.
Private Wilcox. MrsWilcox, of Teralba, has been informed of the death at the front of her son, Private Thomas John (Nugget) Wilcox. Private Wilcox, who was 29, had since boyhood been in the employ of MrT.C. Frith, storekeeper.
Sergeant-Major Bissett. Mrand MrsT. Bissett, of West Wallsend, have been informed that their son, Sergeant-major T. Bissett, of the Black Watch, has been killed in action in Mesopotamia.
Private M’Curry.MrM’Curry, of Carrington St, West Maitland, has been informed that his son, Private George (Jum) M’Curry, previously reported missing, was killed in action in attack on Bullecourt by a machine gun bullet on April 11.
Private Taylor.MrsM. Taylor, of MetcalfeSt, Wallsend, has been notified that her son, Private Robert Taylor was killed in action on June 7. Private Taylor, who was a native of Wallsend, was 30. At the time of his enlistment he was working at Neath Colliery. His only brother, Private Albert Taylor, was killed in action in July of last year.
Private Hincks. Mrs Arthur Straker, of Cardiff, has been notified that her brother, Private Alex. Hincks, was killed in action on June 8.
Private Pyle. MrAppleby, of Cardiff, has been notified that his friend, Private J. Pyle, was killed in action in France on April 15. Private Pyle, when he enlisted, was an employee of Lymington Colliery. He was a native of Northumberland, England.
Private Cantelo. MrsW. Cantelo of Ocean St, Dudley, has been informed that her son, Private Frederick Cantelo, was killed in action on June 9.
Private Hincks. MrR. Hincks, of Regent St, New Lambton, has received word that his son, Private Cecil Hincks, has been killed in France.
Private Elliott. Mrand MrsAbraham Elliott, of Morgan St, Adamstown, received a message last week that their son, Private George Elliott, of Newcastle’s OwnBattalion, died of wounds on June 9. Private Elliott was 28 and was employed at the Sulphide Works when he enlisted.
Private Jenkins. MrsTom Mitten, ElizabethSt, Tighe’s Hill, has been advised that her brother, Private Tom Jenkins, who was reported missing, is now a prisoner of war in Germany.
Driver Toll. Alderman A. F. Toll and MrsToll, of Wickham, received a cable message from London last night, stating that their son, Driver T. Toll, who was officially reported missing, from April 11, is a prisoner of war in Germany.
LATE LES DARCYThe body of the late Les Darcy was brought to his home town, East Maitland, Thursday evening, and was received by a large gathering of his boyhood friends who desired to pay a tribute of respect to his memory. As the coffin was removed from the carriage and conveyed to the hearse prayers were recited by the Very Rev. F. O’Gorman, P.P., The Revs. J. J. Coady and Davoren were also present. The coffin was carried by Messrs. Con Irwin, J. Ferry, G. Knight, M. Stapleton, R. Stapleton, P. Hayes, P. O’Rourke, and M. Tobin.A procession was formed and a large number of men marched, four abreast, behind the hearse and mourning coach, followed by vehicles, via Melbourne and High streets, to St. Joseph’s Church, where the body will remain until Saturday morning, when a Requiem Mass will be celebrated. The body was accompanied from Sydney by Miss Winifred O’Sullivan, Miss Pearl Darcy, Miss O’Rourke, Mr. E. Darcy, (father), Messrs. Cecil and John Darcy (brothers), Mr. and Mrs. John Irwin, Messrs. J. P. Fletcher, H. Cameron, M. Stapleton, and Mick Hawkins, the late champion’s comrade and trainer.Among a large number of beautiful wreaths placed on the coffin was one from “Hunter River Boys at the Front.”
CURRENT NEWSAn order has been issued by the Department of Defence instructing farriers in the military force to work up old and worn shoes into new ones, in view of the increased cost of horseshoe iron.
In connection with the late Les Darcy’s funeral at East Maitland on Sunday, a special fast passenger train will leave Newcastle 1.5 pm, stopping only at Honeysuckle, Hamilton, Waratah, Victoria-street, East Maitland and West Maitland. On the return journey the train will leave East Maitland at 5pm.
ENLISTMENTSErnest Anscombe, Murrurundi; Herbert James Batterham, Moonan Flat; Mary Ellen Briggs, Newcastle; Frank Bristow, Kurri Kurri; John Brogan, Newcastle; Thomas Brown, Newcastle; John Williams Davis, West Maitland; William Dooley, Newcastle; William Fitzgerald, Kurri Kurri; Eric Hodges, Carrington; Andrew Irving, Merewether; William James, Kurri Kurri; Peter Meeking, Newcastle; Francis Anson Mehan, Mayfield; Samuel John Moore, Gloucester; Percy Earl Morris, Mayfield; Douglas Robson, Hamilton; Earle Desmond Robson, Hamilton; James Arthur Milton Ruttley, North Waratah; Charles James Swaddling, Dungog; Reginald Ernest Swan, West Maitland; Arthur Tams, Stockton.
DEATHSPte Joseph Dagg, East Gresford; Pte Sidney Edmonds, Telarah; Sgt Arthur Gower, Islington; Pte Archibald Gray, Stroud; Pte Samuel Vincent Heffernan, Murrurundi; Spr Robert Hughes, Hamilton; Pte George Reginald Smith, Cooks Hill; Pte John Cyril Tripp, Muswellbrook.
David Dial OAM is a Hunter Valley-based military historian. Follow David’s research at facebook苏州夜网/HunterValleyMilitaryHistory