The AIF Project

Arthur James HALL

Regimental number2262
Place of birthCoromandel Valley, South Australia
SchoolCoromandel Valley Public School, South Australia
AddressCoromandel Valley, South Australia
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation24
Height5' 9.5"
Weight174 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs Elizabeth Hall, Coromandel Valley, South Australia
Previous military serviceMember for 12 months of Blackwood Rifle Club, South Australia.
Enlistment date27 November 1914
Place of enlistmentOaklands, South Australia
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Rank from Nominal Roll2nd Lieutenant
Unit from Nominal Roll13th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 4 July 1918
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Mark and Elizabeth HALL, Coromandel Valley, South Australia

Military Medal

Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No 66
Date: 2 May 1918

Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Embarked Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 22 June 1915; taken on strength, 4th Field Ambulance, Anzac, 8 July 1915.

Disembarked Alexandria, 24 December 1915 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Admitted to 1st Stationary Hospital, Ismailia, 15 January 1916 (broken nose); discharged to duty, 17 January 1916.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 1 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 9 June 1916.

Appointed Lance Corporal, 12 September 1916.

Selected to attend Infantry Cadet Bn Course, England, commencing 7 December 1917.

Joined No 5 Officer Cadet Bn, Trinity College, Cambridge, 7 December 1917.

Awarded Military Medal.

Qualified for Commission in the Infantry, 3 May 1918.

Admitted to 1st Eastern General Hospital, Cambridge, 3 May 1918; discharged from hospital, 9 May 1918.

Proceeded overseas to France, 11 June 1918; taken on strength, 13th Bn, in the field, 19 June 1918.

Killed in action, Hamel, 4 July 1918.

Note on file, Lt T.B. WEBSTER, Adjutant, 13th Bn (undated): '2/Lieut. HALL was killed instantaneously on 4.7.18 by a bullet through the head and was buried between "C" Coy Headquarters and the front line trench. The appoximate location of the grave is P.21 A Sheet 62D N.E. & 62D S.E. VAIRE WOOD. 1/20,000.'

Statement, Red Cross File No 1240601E, 3017 Pte F. DIBDEN, D Company, 13th Bn, 8 October 1918: 'There was only one Lieut. Hall and I saw him wounded about the middle of August. He was wounded in the head at Harbonnieres in front of Villers Bretonneux. I saw him taken out. There were six casualties from the same shell, two killed and four wounded. He was taken to the D/Station but I don't know what happened after that.'

Second statement, 4693 Pte T.B. COOPER, 13th Bn (patient, 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital, Dartford, England), 3 October 1918: 'I saw Mr. Hall sniped on the head while we were advancing at Hamel. I know no particulars where he was buried.'

Third statement, 7051 Lance Corporal N.R. O'BRIEN, D Company, 13th Bn, 29 September 1918: 'He was second in command of my Company. On the 4th July we were near Harbonniere [sic] holding the line. About 7 p.m. Mr. Hall with several others was standing close to a M.G. Position when it was hit by a whizz bang. I was there and saw it. Three were killed and four wounded. Mr. Hall was wounded in the side and head, and was taken to our D/Station. I heard that he died later.'

Fourth statement, 3669 Sergeant W.E. MERRETT, C Company, 13th Bn, 28 September 1918: 'I saw this Officer's Grave behind our front line at Vaire Wood near Hamel; a Cross was put up, made of two pieces of stick and pencilled particulars. The ground is in our hands. Grave in the open field. I did not see him killed.'

Medals: Military Medal, 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, HALL Arthur James
Red Cross File No 1240601E

Print format