The AIF Project

John William PORTHOUSE

Regimental number519
Place of birthHobart, Tasmania
ReligionChurch of England
AddressZeehan, Tasmania
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation32
Height5' 5"
Weight154 lbs
Next of kinFather, W Porthouse, 37 Prospect Terrace, Ponsonby, New Zealand
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date2 September 1916
Place of enlistmentClaremont, Tasmania
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit nameMachine Gun Company 4, Reinforcement 8
AWM Embarkation Roll number24/9/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A35 Berrima on 16 December 1916
Rank from Nominal RollLance Corporal
Unit from Nominal Roll4th Machine Gun Battalion
FateReturned to Australia 15 June 1919
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Photo: Andrew Richardson

Military Medal

'For conspicuous coolness and initiative in operations against HINDENBURG LINE on 18th September 1918. Lance Corporal PORTHOUSE was No. 1 on a Machine Gun which accompanied "D" Company 13th Battalion. On reaching the halt line they came under heavy fire from enemy machine guns firing from HEART COPSE. Lance Corporal PORTHOUSE instantly saw the position and locating the enemy guns, chose a position from where he could obtain direct shooting. The position being in the line of fire from an enemy anti-tank gun PORTHOUSE personally took his gun out, engaged and silenced the enemy machine guns and then engaged the anti-tank gun, inflicting casualties on the crew. By his coolness and personal disregard of danger he inspired confidence to his men and set a wonderful example of leadership and initiative.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 115
Date: 10 October 1919

Discharge date19 October 1919
Other details

War service: Western Front

Commenced return to Australia on board HT 'Swakopmund', 15 June 1919; disembarked, Tasmania, 14 August 1919; discharged (termination of period of enlistment), Hobart, 19 October 1919.

Medals: Military Medal, British War Medal, Victory Medal
Date of death28 June 1949
Age at death65
Place of burialRookwood Necropolis, Sydney, New South Wales
SourcesNAA: B2455, PORTHOUSE John William

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