The AIF Project


Regimental number2873
Place of birthStockport, England
Age on arrival in Australia19
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationRailway employee
AddressStation Street, Mortdale, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation22
Height5' 6.5"
Weight144 lbs
Next of kinBrother, J Mayer, Station Street, Mortdale , New South Wales
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date22 June 1915
Place of enlistmentLiverpool, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name3rd Battalion, 9th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/20/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A8 Argyllshire on 30 September 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll55th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 20 July 1916
Place of death or woundingFleurbaix, France (Battle of Fromelles)
Age at death23
Age at death from cemetery records23
Place of burialFromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery (Plot IV, Row B, Grave No 5), France
Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: William Henry and Elilzabeth Alice MAYER. Native of Stockport, England
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Taken on strength of 3rd Bn, Tel el Kebir, 21 January 1916.

Transferred to 55th Bn, 13 February 1916; taken on strength of 55th Bn, Tel el Kebir, 13 February 1916.

Found guilty, 18 April 1916, of hesitating to obey an order: awarded 3 days' Field Punishment No 2.

Found guilty, 11 May 1916, of conduct to prejudice of good order and military discipline: awarded 6 days' Field Punishment No 2.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 19 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 29 June 1916.

Killed in action, 20 July 1916.

Note, Red Cross File No 1750207: 'No trace Germany[.] Cert. by Capt. Mills 10.10.19.'

Statement, 3037 Pte J. DOUGLAS, C Company, 55th Bn, 9 November 1916: 'He belonged to the M.G.S. and was killed at Fleurbaix on July 20 in the German trench. His body had to be left there. We held the trench for the night, and he was killed sometime during the night.'

Second statement, 4799 Pte D. DUIGNON, 55th Bn (patient, 1st Southern General Hospital, Dudley Road Section, Birmingham, England), 24 November 1916: I know that Mayer was killed - he was shot through the head - I saw his dead body.'

Third statement, 3911 Sergeant T. ROBERTS, 55th Bn (patient, No 4 Australian General Hospital, Randwick), 5 December 1917: 'He was in a Lewis Gun Section at Fromelles and was holding the trench, (sic) we had taken from Fritz. At daybreak on the 20th July 1916 a sniper shot him in the head killing him instantly.'

Fourth statement, Lt C.T. AGASSIZ, Machine Gun Officer, 55th Bn, 8 January 1917: 'Pte Mayer was killed when firing a Machine Gun over my shoulder. It was in the German third line at midnight on 19th July. He was killed instantaneously, and could not have suffered any pain. I have not heard that any of the bodies were buried ... I handed in his pay book and identity disc at Battn. Headquarters.'

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

Originally listed as 'No Known Grave' and commemorated at V.C. Corner (Panel No 13), Australian Cemetery, Fromelles; subsequently (2010) identified, and interred in the Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery, France.
SourcesNAA: B2455, MAYER Henry
Red Cross File No 1750207

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