Tag Archives: Indigenous enlistment Back

Jack NORMAN #64373

Jack Norman

Indigenous Australian, Jack NORMAN, 6th Reinforcements Egypt & Field Engineers. John Henry Norman was born in Croydon, Qld in 1899, and worked near Bundaberg on a cane farm, prior to enlisting. Jack was employed by Martin Wessell, having been hired out from the Barambah Mission station at the age of 13. Jack volunteered to serve … Read more

Wallie JOHNSON #2444

Wally Johnson

Indigenous Australian, Wallie (Walter) Johnson, 49th & 47th Infantry Battalions. Wallie (Walter) Johnson was born on Whyenbah Station, near St George in 1894. His mother died when he was very young and Wallie was taken in by the local police sergeant Phillip Cowley and his wife Harriet (Hetty). He was raised along with their own … Read more

John (Jack) HUGGINS #5689

8th Reinf. 9th Battallion

Indigenous Australian, John (Jack) Huggins, 9th & 26th Infantry Battalions. Jack Huggins was almost thirty years old when he was accepted to serve for his country on New Years Eve, 1915. Tall and lean, he was a stockman like his father before him, used to working in the harsh conditions of northern Queensland. Jack’s previous … Read more

William OLIVE #5158

William Olive

William OLIVE, 9th & 49th Infantry Battalion Private Willie Olive was born to James [?] Olive and Nellie Cowan (1854-1904) about 1883 and although he enlisted in Lismore, NSW to serve with the first AIF, he trained at Enoggera, Brisbane with the 16th Reinforcements for the 9th Infantry Battalion. His mother Nellie had died in … Read more

Alexander STANLEY #50280

Alexander Stanley

Indigenous Australian, Alexander STANLEY, 11th Light Horse Regiment Alexander ‘Digger’ Stanley volunteered to serve with the first AIF in March 1918, and with no known relatives named his friend Jack Dillahide as his next of kin. Stanley had been working as a drover at Wongongra Station near Chincilla in the Western Downs region of Queensland. … Read more

George James SOSAR #6839

George James Sosar

George SOSAR, 26th Infantry Battalion George James SOSAR was born on Thursday Island in 1892, when his father was working on the island as a carpenter. George’s father Manuel Sosar was born in central Chile, South America and his mother Harriet Morris, born in Bowen, was the granddaughter of Mary an aboriginal woman from Manaroo … Read more

Tom SMITH #3724A

Tom Smith

Indigenous Australian, Tom SMITH,  49th Infantry Battalion When Tom (Thomas Henry) SMITH enlisted in the first AIF in May 1917, it was not for the first time. Tom had previously volunteered in 1915 but was rejected for being half-caste. On this occasion Tom was in the company of two other Aboriginal recruits, Charlie Parker and … Read more

Charlie SMITH #64382

Charlie Smith

Indigenous Australian, Charlie SMITH, 6th Queensland Reinforcements. Charlie SMITH was born at Harvest Home Station, near Charters Towers, Qld. to William and Cissie Smith in 1899 and was working as a stockman on Bluff Downs Station before he volunteered to serve with the first AIF in July 1918. Charlie Smith was one of five stockmen … Read more

Edward RYAN #476

James Ryan

Indigenous Australian, Edward RYAN, 3rd Machine Gun Battalion. James Edward (Ted) RYAN was the son of Christina Copson and Michael Ryan, born in 1894 at Woolvie, Queensland. Edward enlisted in Brisbane in July 1916, age 22 and was selected to serve as a gunner with the 3rd Machine Gun Battalion and trained at Lytton just … Read more