William Charles ELLERY

William Charles ELLERY

Per his military service record (regimental no. 4769), William Charles Ellery was born at Castlemaine, Victoria.[1]  He gave his age as 43 years and 7 months, his marital status as single, and his occupation as labourer.  His description on his Certificate of Medical Examination was height 5 feet 9 inches tall, weight 168 lbs., with a dark complexion, brown eyes, and brown hair. His religious denomination was Wesleyan.  He claimed to have no previous military service.

In the Dunedoo Chronicle section of the Mudgee Guardian and North-Western Representative, it was reported that a large crowd farewelled Mr. W. C. Ellery at the local train station, ‘who left by train for Lithgow in the hope of joining Hitchen’s “Coo-ees”’.[2]

He completed his medical examination at Ashfield on 11th November 1915.  He was attested by Lieutenant F. Middenway when the Coo-ees were at Ashfield on 11th November 1915.  His ‘Oath to be taken by person being enlisted’ section on his Attestation Paper was dated from 2nd November 1915 (when the Coo-ees were in Lithgow).

After completing the Coo-ee March he went to Liverpool Camp as reinforcement for the 13th Battalion.

On his embarkation roll his address at time of enrolment was Dunedoo, N.S.W.[3]  His next of kin was listed as friend, W. Miller, C/o A. Yeo, Merrygoen, Dunedoo, N.S.W.

On 8th March 1916 Private Ellery, along with many of the other Coo-ees, departed Sydney on the HMAT A15 Star of England. He arrived in Egypt on 11th April 1916.

On 19th April 1916 Private Ellery was transferred to the 45th Battalion at Tel-el-Kebir.

On 18th June 1916 Private Ellery left Alexandria aboard the Kinfauns Castle bound for France, arriving at Marseilles on 29th June 1916.

Private Ellery served with the 45th Battalion through its first action at Fleurbaix, France in July 1916 then through the battles around Pozieres and Mouquet Farm in August, September and October 1916.

On 31st December 1916  the 45th Battalion was training at Flesslers, France when Private Elley was evacuated sick. On 11th January 1917 Private Ellery was admitted to the 8th Australian Field Ambulance suffering Rheumatism. He was discharged on 16th January 1917, and rejoined the 45th Battalion when it was manning the front line in the vicinity of Gudecourt, France.

On 23rd April 1917 the 45th Battalion was training at Bresle, France, when Private Ellery was admitted to the 13th Australian Field Ambulance suffering from Chronic Rheumatism.

He was discharged to duty on 4th May 1917, and returned to the 45th Battalion on 6th May 1917, when it was still at Bresle, France.

On 14th May 1917 Private Ellery was admitted to the 7th Australian Field Ambulance suffering from Chronic Rheumatism. He was discharged on 25th May 1917, and rejoined the 45th Battalion when it was at Neuve Eglise, France, providing working parties in the rear area of the front.

On 12th December 1917 the 45th Battalion was training at Haut Allaines, France, when Private Ellery was evacuated sick. On 13th December 1917 he was evacuated to the 9th General Hospital at Rouen, France, suffering from Rheumatic Fever.

On 14th December 1917 Private Ellery was placed aboard a Hospital Ship for evacuation to England.

On 15th December 1917 he was admitted to the University War Hospital at Southampton, England suffering Chronic Rheumatism.

On 9th January 1918 he was transferred to the 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital at Dartford, England.

On 13th January 1918 Private Ellery was discharged from hospital, and marched into the No. 2 Command Depot at Weymouth, England.

Private Ellery commenced his return to Australia aboard the H.T. Dunvegan Castle on 13th March 1918.  On 21st May 1918 he embarked at Captetown, South Africa, aboard H.T. Tofua.

He disembarked at Melbourne on 14th June 1918.

He was discharged medically unfit with chronic rheumatic arthritis on 3rd August 1918.

Note: It appears from a newspaper article about his welcome home to Dunedoo on 27th November 1918 that the surname of “Ellery” that he enlisted under may have been an assumed name, and that his surname was actually “Burly” or “Burley”.[4]

 

[1] NAA: B2455, ELLERY W C

[2] ‘The Doings Of The West’, Gilgandra Weekly (NSW : 1915 – 1929), 12 November 1915, p. 15. Retrieved November 12, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article119922120

[3] Australian War Memorial. First World War Embarkation Roll, William Charles Ellery.

[4] ‘Presentation to Returned Soldiers’, Mudgee Guardian and North-Western Representative, 5 December 1918, p. 11. Retrieved November 12, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article157145589

 

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