The AIF Project

James Morrison HAMILTON

Regimental number76
Place of birthMildura, Victoria
SchoolMildura State School, Mildura, Victoria
ReligionPresbyterian
OccupationCarpenter
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation19
Height5' 8.5"
Weight158 lbs
Next of kinFather, James Hamilton, Block 23, Merbein, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed in the 73rd Infantry, Citizen Military Forces; still serving at time of AIF enlistment.
Enlistment date19 August 1914
Rank on enlistmentSapper
Unit name1st Field Company Engineers
AWM Embarkation Roll number14/20/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board Transport A19 Afric on 18 October 1914
Rank from Nominal RollCorporal
Unit from Nominal Roll1st Field Company Engineers
FateKilled in Action 21 September 1917
Place of death or woundingPasschendaele, Ypres, Belgium
Age at death21
Age at death from cemetery records21
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Addenda Panel 57), 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
24
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: James and Barbara HAMILTON
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Embarked Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 3 March 1915. Wounded in action, Gallipoli; admitted to 2nd Stationary Hospital, Lemnos, 9 May 1915 (bullet wound, left arm, and finger, right hand); transferred to Kaser-el Aine Convalescent Camp, Helouan, 10 May 1915; discharged to Base Details, 15 May 1915.

Reported for duty, Gallipoli, 2 June 1915.

Disembarked Alexandria, 27 December 1915 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Found guilty, 4 January 1916, of being absent without leave, 10 pm, 3 January 1916, to 10 am, 4 January 1916: awarded forfeiture of 1 day's pay. Appointed Lance Corporal, 22 January 1916.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 21 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 28 March 1916. Promoted 2nd Corporal, 20 March 1916.

Wounded in action, 23 July 1916 (gun shot wound, buttock); admitted to 16th General Hospital, 24 July 1916; transferred to England, 27 July 1916, and admitted to 3rd Western General Hospital, Cardiff, 29 July 1916. Marched in to No. 1 Command Depot, Perham Downs, 23 September 1916. Proceeded overseas to France, 8 February 1917.

Transferred to 1st Division Engineers, 18 February 1917.

Promoted Corporal, 28 May 1917.

Reported missing, believed killed, Belgium, 21 September 1917; fate confirmed as killed in action.

Note on file: 'Buried Belgian Battery Corner Military Cemetery, 1 mile S.W. of Ypres.' [Note: this appears to be a mix-up with 3070 Pte James HAMILTON, 3rd Bn, killed in action 29 October 1917.]

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, HAMILTON James Morrison

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