Tag Archives: William Joseph Munro

William Joseph MUNRO

William Joseph MUNRO

Per his military service record (regimental no. 4853), William Joseph Munro was born at Parramatta, N.S.W. He gave his age as 23 years, his marital status as single, and his occupation as station hand / laborer. His description on his medical was height 5 feet 6 ½ inches tall, weight 135 lbs., with a dark complexion, light hazel eyes, and black hair. His religious denomination was Roman Catholic. He claimed that he had no previous military service.

He completed his medical on the 10th November 1915 at Parramatta, and was attested at Parramatta on the 11th November 1915. The Coo-ees had held a recruiting meeting in the Park at Parramatta on the evening of the 10th November, where it was reported that 41 men had offered themselves as recruits.[1]

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 Ox Hide, Cook Street, Lidcombe, N.S.W., and his next of kin is listed as his father, J. Munro, Ox Hide, Cook Street, Lidcombe, N.S.W.

On 8th March 1916 Private Munro departed Sydney on the HMAT A15 Star of England, along with many of the other Coo-ees, as part of the 15th reinforcements for the 13th Battalion. He arrived in Egypt on 11th April 1916.

On 7th June 1916 Private Munro left Alexandria aboard the Transport Ionian bound for France, arriving at Marseilles on 14th June 1916.

He was sent to the 4th Australian Division Base Depot at Etaples, France. On 21st July 1916 he joined the 13th Battalion whilst it was training at the Somme, France. He participated in the 13th Battalion’s first major offensive action in France at Pozieres in August 1916.

On 30th August 1916 Private Munro was with the 13th Battalion when it was in action at Pozieres, France. On this day Private Munro was reported Missing In Action.

On 27th September 1916 Private Munro was reported to be a Prisoner of War being held at Gefangenenlager at Dulmen in Westfalia, Germany. On the 16th of December 1916 he was reported to have been moved to Munster 1/W, Germany.

A photo of him appeared in the Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate on 8th June 1918 with another prisoner of war and a German prison guard, reporting that he was working in the salt mines.[2]


W. J. Munro (seated) with another prisoner of war and a German guard, 1918 (Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate, 8/6/1918)

W. J. Munro (seated) with another prisoner of war and a German guard, 1918 (Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate, 8/6/1918)

Private Munro remained a prisoner for the remainder of the war. In December 1918 he was repatriated to England, arriving at Hull on 7th December 1918, and in London on 9th December 1918.

On 28th January 1919 Private Munro was charged with Being Absent Without Leave from 10 am on 11th January 1919 until 9 am on 28th January 1919. He was fined a total of 34 days pay. On 29th January 1919 Private Munro marched into the Number One Command Depot at Sutton Veny, England.

On 2nd March 1919 Private Munro departed England aboard the Derbyshire bound for Australia. He arrived in Australia on 24th April 1919, and was discharged Termination of Period of Enlistment on 9th June 1919.

[1] ‘The procession’, The Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate, 13 November 1915, p. 11, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article86101767

[2] ‘Australians and German Guard’, The Cumberland Argus and Fruitgrowers Advocate, 8 June 1918, p. 10, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article86207336