The AIF Project

James MARSDEN

Regimental number2044
Place of birthCambridge England
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationLabourer
Address3 Wellbrook Cottage, Girton Cambridge, England
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Next of kinSister, Mrs L Cole, 3 Wellbrook Cottage Girton, Cambridge, England
Enlistment date7 July 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name17th Battalion, 3rd Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/34/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A54 Runic on 9 August 1915
FateNo details of fate entered on Nominal Roll
Age at death from cemetery records27
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 17), Belgium

The Menin Gate Memorial (so named because the road led to the town of Menin) was constructed on the site of a gateway in the eastern walls of the old Flemish town of Ypres, Belgium, where hundreds of thousands of allied troops passed on their way to the front, the Ypres salient, the site from April 1915 to the end of the war of some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

The Memorial was conceived as a monument to the 350,000 men of the British Empire who fought in the campaign. Inside the arch, on tablets of Portland stone, are inscribed the names of 56,000 men, including 6,178 Australians, who served in the Ypres campaign and who have no known grave.

The opening of the Menin Gate Memorial on 24 July 1927 so moved the Australian artist Will Longstaff that he painted 'The Menin Gate at Midnight', which portrays a ghostly army of the dead marching past the Menin Gate. The painting now hangs in the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, at the entrance of which are two medieval stone lions presented to the Memorial by the City of Ypres in 1936.

Since the 1930s, with the brief interval of the German occupation in the Second World War, the City of Ypres has conducted a ceremony at the Memorial at dusk each evening to commemorate those who died in the Ypres campaign.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
84
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Fredrick Mortimer and Elizabeth Turner STIFF, 11A Manor Street, Cambridge, England. STIFF the true family name
Medals

Military Medal


Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 140
Date: 27 August 1917

Print format