Sunday, 26 July 2015

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.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...