Indigenous Australian, William [Donald] BAYSWATER, 3rd Machine Gun Battalion.
William Bayswater was born in Sydney in 1901 and at the time of enlistment at just age 16 he was working as a blacksmith in Lismore, NSW.
Like many recruits from northern NSW he completed his initial training at Enoggera Camp, Brisbane, after which William was transferred to the Machine Gun Depot, at Seymour, Victoria.
Before he embarked for service overseas he had been admitted to hospital in the military camp with Influenza and the symptoms of Catarrh, being returned to light duties after his discharge. While onboard HMAT Indarra in November 1917 he became ill again with Influenza and also Measles and was admitted to the 79th General Hospital, Taranto, Italy.
Following his recovery he was transferred to the training battalions in Codford and Parkhouse, England, but was not considered well enough to take part in any active service in the front lines.
Private Bayswater returned to Australia 24 October 1919 on board the Euripedes and was discharged in November.
He married Eileen Valerie Southwell in 1921 and the next year saw the birth of their only child William Donald jnr. William snr was an employee of the NSW Railways for many years; he died at the early age of 41, in March 1941.
William jnr. served in the Second World War with the 2nd/23rd Infantry Battalion #NX68454.
Read more …
- SERVICE RECORD: BAYSWATER, William Donald
- EMBARKATION ROLL: 13th Reinforcements, 3rd Machine Gun Battalion
- ‘Served at 15’ Cumberland Argus and Fruitgowers Advocate 2 April 1941 p2
- Image: The Queenslander Pictorial, 24 November 1917
- One of the soldiers featured in SLQ’s HistoryPin Collection
- View the whole Collection: Indigenous enlistment
- Queensland’s Indigenous Servicemen Digital Story and Oral History
Marg Powell & Des Crump | QANZAC100, State Library of Queensland