Per his military service record (Depot), James Gordon was born at Parramatta, N.S.W. He gave his age as 23 years and 5 months, his marital status as single, and his occupation as labourer. His description on his Certificate of medical examination was height 5 feet 8 inches tall, weight 140 lbs, with a fair complexion, blue eyes, and brown hair. His religious denomination was Church of England. He claimed that he had no previous military experience.
His next of kin on his Attestation paper was listed his father, Stephen Gordon, Lennox Street, Parramatta, Sydney.
He completed his medical examination, and was attested by Lieutenant R. Howe, at Parramatta on 11th November 1915 (the day the Coo-ees marched from Parramatta to Ashfield).
After completing the Coo-ee March he went to Liverpool Camp as reinforcement for the 13th Battalion.
On 12th December 1915 Private Gordon went absent without leave till he was apprehended on 31st January 1916. As a result he was charged for being absent without leave amounting to desertion.
He was discharged for being a deserter on 20th July 1916.
 NAA: B2455, GORDON J