Tags: History. ANZAC. Military. Australian Defence Force. Centenary.
Who from Bribie answered the call? Bribie Island Historical Society received a grant from Queensland Anzac Centenary Grants program to identify all enlistees in WW1 and WW2 who were born or lived on Bribie Island or Pumicestone Passage when they enlisted. From an original number of three WW1 enlistments our research has now identified 18 from this area who answered the call. Considering that the population of Bribie Island in 1915 was about 40 and assume the same “up the passage” 18 is quite significant. So who were these men? Three of them paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Featured Image(above): Pic — Photo of Walter Henry Mills and Ada Burrell on their wedding day – 17 May 1919. [Source: Ancestry.com – Kunde family tree –
Arthur William STORR, 1899 – 1917, a surveyors assistant when he joined 9 Battalion (Bn) 14 Sep 1915, Tragically killed in action (KIA) France 26 Mar 1917 and remembered on the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial, Picardie, France. He gave his next of kin (NOK) address as “Bribie View, via Caboolture”. William GOSLING, c1898- 1918, the youngest enlistee age 18y10m and a farmer when he enlisted 26 Bn 11 Sep 1915. NOK living at Bribie Lightkeepers residence, North Bribie Island. He was KIA in France 8 Aug 1918 and is buried Villers- Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Villers- Bretonneux, Picardie, France.
The third was Alexander Thomas DAVIS 1892 – 1919, a fisherman when he joined 42Bn on 1 Oct 1916 and served in France until seriously wounded 9 Jun 1918. He was evacuated to England and then Australia where he died of wounds 5 May 1919.
Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery (Left), and Memorial (Right) Villers-Bretonneux, Picardie, France.
Arthur William STORR had two brothers also enlisted. Harold Francis STORR, b1893. He was a plumber when he joined 15 Bn on 16 Sep 1914. He gave his NOK address as “Donnybrook, via Caboolture, N.C.Line”. 15 Bn landed Gallipoli 25 Apr 1915.
He was wounded on 7 May 1915 treated in hospital at Mustapha and returned to his unit 17 Oct 1915. He remained with the Bn when it went to France and returned to Australia in Jul 1919. Charles Allan STORR, b1896. He was a butter maker when he also joined 9 Bn 16 Sep 1915. He returned home 17 Jul 1919. He gave his NOK address as ““Bribie View, via Caboolture, N.C.Line”. The eldest enlistee was 37yo Alan Layton, b1886. He joined 4 Pioneer Bn on 29 Nov 1916 and served in France. He was a storekeeper, married with family living on Bribie in 1916. Reginald Joseph CAMPBELL, 1896 – 1976, enlisted into the Navy 16 Apr 1917. It appears that he served in Australia.
Reg was born and died on Bribie Is. Reg was also an oysterman, a fisherman, and eventually a storekeeper. His last address was 7 South Esplanade Bongaree, Bribie Is.
Reg Campbell (possibly after WW1 when he worked on SS Koopa).
Two brothers, both fishermen who enlisted were Edward Henry FREEMAN, 1896 – 1957, who enlisted 11 Bn 7 Sep 1916 and William FREEMAN, b1890 , who enlisted 3 Machine Gun Bn 17 Sep 1916.
They both served in France and returned in 1919. William also served in WW2 Another family had three sons enlist. Walter Henry MILLS, 1886 – 1961, was a carpenter when he enlisted 25 Bn 20 Jan 1915. He was born Woorim 23 Sep 1886 and is the earliest known Bribie Island birth. John Robert MILLS, b1893, enlisted into 2 Remount Unit 5 Nov 1915. He served in Egypt until repatriated with deafness in Apr 1916.
Caption from Lyn Sach: WIlliam Freeman in uniform(left image) and Caption from Lyn Sach: Edward Henry Freeman (on right with the axe and his legs out in front of him). Photo taken in Western Australia. (right image)
He and third brother Thomas James MILLS, b1891 joined 15 Bn 19 Nov 1914. He also served in Egypt and returned to Australia suffering rheumatism 29 July 1915. Both were born at Toorbul. Maurice Alexander BISHOP, 1892 – 1973, enlisted 11 Depot Bn 26 Apr 1916, did not serve overseas and was discharged 18 May 1916. He was born at Toorbul. Walter Herbert BONNEY 1896 – 1976.
Outdoor portrait of Australian Prisoner of War (POW) 944 Private (Pte) Walter Henry Mills, 25th Battalion, from Eumundi, Queensland. He was captured at Pozieres, France on 29 July 1916 and spent the rest of the war in German POW camps. He survived and was repatriated to England in December 1918. Pte Mills arrived back in Australia on 25 April 1919.
Pic — Photo of Walter Henry Mills and Ada Burrell on their wedding day – 17 May 1919. [Source: Ancestry.com – Kunde family tree – owner: suma328]
A carpenter when he joined 26 Bn 18 Oct 1915 served in France and transferred to 2 Division Signal Company in Jul 1918. He was born at Toorbul also. Bertie DUX , 1896-1973. He was a railway porter when he joined 11 Bn 15 Jun 1916 and served in France where he was wounded. He was born at Toorbul. In Jul 1919 he was granted leave to work with a coach building firm in London for a few weeks to gain experience before coming home. George Leslie GOLLAGHER, 1894 – 1964.
A bullock driver and was living Toorbul when he enlisted 2 Nov 1916. He joined 31 Bn and served in France. George Ernest JACQUES, 1890 – 1962. He gave his occupation as machinist was born at Coochin. He joined 49 Bn 15 May 1916. In the early hours of ANZAC Day 1918 in France the 49th participated in the now legendary attack to dislodge the enemy from Villers-Bretonneux.
Pic — Walter Herbert Bonney’s [Snr] Toorbul home, 1902. [Source: SCL_P87452
Thomas Martin TRIPCONY,b c1890, He was a farmer and joined 49 Bn 22 Nov 1915. He was then living at Cowie on Pumicestone Passage. He was wounded in Oct 1917 which resulted in him being returned to Australia in 1918.
Pic — “Cowie Bank” The Tripcony homestead in Pumicestone Passage 1892.
If any reader is family or has information to add please contact [email protected] Currently there is not a memorial of any description on Bribie Island which pays tribute to WW1 and WW2 enlistees from this area who enlisted. Using funds received from Queensland Anzac Centenary Grants program those above and those identified from WW2 will be acknowledged on two separate plaques soon to be displayed on Bribie Island.
Do not miss the Bribie Island Seaside Museum exhibition commencing 27 Feb to 17 May called – Remembrance: The Australian War Memorial.