The AIF Project

Alexander Stevensen AMERY

Regimental number4974
Place of birthBoweya, Victoria
SchoolBoweya State School, Victoria
ReligionPresbyterian
OccupationFarmer
AddressBoweya via Glenrowan, Victoria
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation23
Height5' 8"
Weight140 lbs
Next of kinFather, Joseph Amery, Boweya via Glenrowan, Victoria
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date20 March 1916
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll25 February 1916
Place of enlistmentWangaratta, Victoria
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name22nd Battalion, 13th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/39/4
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A33 Ayrshire on 3 July 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll22nd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 3 May 1917
Age at death from cemetery records24
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
95
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Joseph and Eliza AMERY
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked Melbourne, 3 July 1916; disembarked Plymouth, England, 2 September 1916.

Proceeded overseas to France from 6th Training Bn, 12 November 1916; taken on strength, 22nd Bn, 24 November 1916.

Reported Missing in Action, 3 May 1917.

Court of Enquiry, held in the field, 26 november 1917, pronounced fate as 'Killed in Action, 3 May 1917'.

Statement, Red Cross File No 0080104, 564 Corporal C.G. BURNS, 22nd Bn, 31 August 1917: 'He was wounded at Bullecourt, and sent to Hospital in England. several of our men who have been over on leave have seen him there. I heard he was shortly to return to Australia.'

Second statement, J. KENNEDY (no further identification), 4 November 1917: 'I only knew him to have been badly wounded near the German line. Whether he died or was grabbed by the Germans I can't say. This was the morning of the 3.5.17.'

Third statement, 4700 Pte J.T. FARRELL, 22nd Bn (undated): 'Pte. Kennedy of D. Coy. told me that he was in the same shell hole as Amery, in the 1st German lines at Bullecourt on May 3rd, 1917. They left the shell hole to crawl to another and Kennedy says that Amery and another man were killed by a shell.'

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
Miscellaneous detailsSecond given name entered incorrectly on Embarkation Roll as Stevenson.
SourcesNAA: B2455, AMERY Alexander Stevensen
Red Cross File No 0080104

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