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Australian Imperial Force 18th Btn in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

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Australian Imperial Force 18th Btn



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Those known to have served with

Australian Imperial Force 18th Btn

during the Great War 1914-1918.

  • Addison Wilfred Emmott . 2nd Lt. (d.22nd Aug 1915)
  • Baldwin MM.. Cecil Charles Harpur. Sgt. (d.1st Mar 1917)
  • Berg Wilbert Nugent . Sgt.
  • Devlin Errol Cappie Nepean. Pte. (d.30th May 1916)
  • Erwin Alfred Douglas Black . Pte. (d.5th Aug 1915)
  • Erwin Alfred James. Pte.
  • Linklater Harry. L/Cpl. (d.22nd August 1915)
  • Martin Frederick Singleton. Pte. (d.30th March 1918)
  • O'Grady Walter Joseph Stanislaus. Lt.

All names on this list have been submitted by relatives, friends, neighbours and others who wish to remember them, if you have any names to add or any recollections or photos of those listed, please Add a Name to this List


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Mar 2017

    Please note we currently have a backlog of submitted material, our volunteers are working through this as quickly as possible and all names, stories and photos will be added to the site. If you have already submitted a story to the site and your UID reference number is higher than 229915 your submission is still in the queue, please do not resubmit without contacting us first.

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1206548

Pte. Alfred Douglas Black "Tibb" Erwin 18th Battalion (d.5th Aug 1915)

I just wanted to pay this tribute to a very special dear uncle, even though I didn't get to meet him, but after researching his life and times I feel very close to him. Also my grandfather and grandmother what these two dear people went through is just so, so, sad in the lose of their beloved eldest son. My mum's [Alma] eldest brother even she didn't get the chance to meet and love him because he died the year my mum was born on the 17th august 1915. Her brother passed 5th august 1915. Not only was Grandma Erwin [Amy Jane] and Grandpa Erwin [Alfred James] trying to come to terms with their son's death but grandpa was also wounded on Gallipoli beach as he got out of one of the boats shot through the ear the bullet dislodging behind his ear but it's the damage it did coming out behind his ear. He was sent home on a hospital ship which on the same day passed the very ship his son Alfred was on going overseas as these ships passed each other the soldiers cooed to each other. Little did grandpa know he was passing his son on the other ship and of course my mum's second name Ceramic is the ship grandpa came home on.

Grandma Erwin was nursing grandpa back to some kind of good health and mum told me he was not the same man that went away according to grandma. This dear lady was raising a family of ten nursing a husband and living from hand to mouth how strong was she! And still waiting at this time to find out the fate of her beloved son who had been reported missing. It took right up until 1917 before they were sure of uncle Alfred's demise. Sadly, I didn't get to know these wonderful people either as they had both passed by the time I arrived in 1940.

Uncle Alfred enlisted at Liverpool, Sydney on the 7th August 1915 he was 21 his army no. 2365. He embarked at Sydney for the Middle East with the 5th Reinforcements 18th Battalion per the ship HMAS a32 Themistocles on the 5th October 1915. Before Uncle Alfred enlisted he had spent three years with the Militia Forces at the age of 18 before he transferred to the AIF.

Then 'A' Company 18th Battalion at Tel-elkebir on 10th January 1916 reported embarked at Alexandra for service in France on 17th March 1916 disembarked at Marseilles 25th March 1916 reported missing 5th August 1915 killed in action that same day his actual birthday was 7th July 1915 makes one wonder if he got to celebrate in any way with his mates and how did they celebrate?

Uncle Alfred was killed instantly along side his best mate Roy Erickson [they were neighbours living next door to each other in Thornley Street Drummoyne ] apparently a bomb landed right on top of them in the Black Watch Trench at Pozziers. They were defending their mates, then they mates who weren't too injured picked up what they could of the two bodies and buried them at the back of the trench and put crosses with their names and numbers on the grave top. Four years later after much bombing and fighting they were found by recovery troops looking for bodies. Roys grave was pretty much ok along with his information but uncle Alfred's had the cross knocked down and any info on his cross was hard to read. Roy was interred again at Villers-Bretonneux Memorial Cemetery by the Commonwealth War Graves Commison. I was lucky enough to get in contact with a great gentleman from the Australian War Memorial in Canberra and after writing under freedom of information to France, AMR Rod Muir gave me some extra info, I passed it on to this wonderful man and he did further investigation for me finding info somewhere overseas in a cellar basement records of Uncle Alfred. Then he had some good news saying to me, I think we have found your uncle and it goes like this.. when Roy Erickson was found they also dug up [excuse the expression ] Uncle Alfred, they interred Roy in the Viller-Bretonneux Cemetery plot number 111 row p grave 27 and Uncle Alfred is in a grave in same row but his headstone says unknown soldier. This was really great as at least I knew he was buried and not strewn all over the place in bits and pieces. I have visited grandpa and grandma at the field of Marrs Cemetery and told them all about their son, silly me they most likely already knew when they arrived upstairs with dear god.

Love you all dearly thank you Grandpa and Uncle Alfred for what you did for our family .

Fay Hill




224169

Pte. Alfred James Erwin D Company 18th Btn.

To my dear grandfather Alfred James Erwin. How does one say thank you grandpa for what you did and gave to us your family and your country. You embarked at Sydney for the Middle East with 'D' company 18th Infantry Battalion per the transport A40 'Ceramic' on 25th June 1915. Your date of disembarkation is not recorded mainly because you were wounded in action at the Gallipoli Peninsula on 22nd of August 1915. You were admitted to 16th Casualty Clearing Station in Malta on 27th of August 1915 and invalided to Australia per the ship Kanowna on 5th of October 1915. Disembarked at Melbourne on 22nd of November 1915. You received 1914/15 star, British War Medal and the Victory Medal. Then you passed away 1929 from your war injuries.

Oh grandpa! how I wish I could have known you and loved you for all that you did and the beautiful country we have now. I will love you forever dear grandpa from your loving grand daughter.

Fay Hill




223235

L/Cpl. Harry Linklater 18th Bn. (d.22nd August 1915)

Harry Linklater died on the 22nd of August 1915, aged 25 and is commemorated on the Lone Pine Memorial in the Lone Pine Cemetery, Gallipoli, Turkey. he was the son of George and Mary Linklater of Fillets, Graemsay, Orkney Islands, Scotland.

s flynn




222778

Pte. Frederick Singleton Martin A Coy. 2 Platoon 33rd Btn. (d.30th March 1918)

Fred Martin was my great uncle. He enlisted on 13 Sep 1915 originally posted to 18th Btn and saw action on the Western Front after being transferred to 33rd Btn.

He fought in all battles with 33rd Btn from late 1916 including the Battle of Messines on to his final action on 30th March 1918 near Hangard Wood, Villers Bretonneux while manning a Lewis machine gun. He was shot in the head and killed instantly. He was buried in Hangard Wood however his grave was lost in battle and he is listed on the Villers Bretonneux Memorial as no-known grave.

Randal McFarlane




217537

Pte. Errol Cappie Nepean Devlin Tropical Unit, 1st Battalion (d.30th May 1916)

Errol Cappie Nepean Devlin was born at Penrith, New South Wales during 1891 to parents Sidney William and Mary. A clerk by trade, he first enlisted at Liverpool on 12 August 1914 at the age of 23 with the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force (ANMEF), Tropical Unit, 1st Battalion. He left Australia aboard HMAT Berrima on 19 August 1914 and served with the ANMEF to capture German assets in New Guinea.

After returning to Australia, he chose to enlist once again. On 22 March 1915 he again enlisted at Liverpool and was assigned to the 18th Infantry Battalion with the rank of Private. Devlin departed Sydney aboard HMAT Ceramic on 25 June 1915. He served with the 18th Battalion at Gallipoli and on the Western Front until he was killed in action on 30 May 1916 in France. He was 25 years old. Errol Devlin is buried at Brewery Orchard Cemetery, Bois-Grenier, France

s flynn




217470

Sgt. Wilbert Nugent Berg 18th Battalion

Wilbert Nugent Berg was born near Braidwood, New South Wales in 1896 and worked as a butcher before the First World War. His parents were Walter Samuel and Ellen (Nelly) Berg of Sydney. Berg married Mildred Phillips in 1915 before he enlisted with the Australian Imperial Force.

On 10 February 1915, he enlisted in the AIF at Liverpool, New South Wales. He was assigned to the 18th Battalion and departed Sydney aboard HMAT Ceramic on 25 June 1915. Wilbert Berg left England to return to Australia on 15 April 1918. During the post-war years, Wilbert Berg worked as a press photographer and died on 16 November 1929

s flynn




217458

Sgt. Cecil Charles Harpur Baldwin MM. 18th Infantry Battalion (d.1st Mar 1917)

Cecil Charles Harpur Baldwin was born in 1893 at Rydalmere, New South Wales, the grandson of Australian poet Charles Harpur. Preceding his First World War service he was a member of the senior cadets and the militia units St George's Rifles and the Legion of Frontiersmen. The 22-year-old clerk and accountant enlisted with the Australian Imperial Force on 16th August 1915, and he departed Sydney with reinforcements for the 18th Infantry Battalion aboard HMAT Suevic on 20th October 1915.

In February 1916 Baldwin was transferred to the 3rd Infantry Battalion, which was sent to the Western Front. Among his regular duties, he wrote of listening in the trenches at night for enemy movement and patrols. He wrote to his mother several times during his time on the front, taking great effort to portray a positive experience as to mitigate her worrying. Baldwin signed off most of these letters with the phrase, "Don't worry, be happy." The battalion's first major action in France was at Pozières in July and August of 1916. There Baldwin was awarded the Military Medal for bravery in the field during the battle. In November he was wounded in action with a gunshot to the left arm.

On 1st March 1917 Cecil Baldwin was killed at La Barque near Bapaume during an early morning raid by a Prussian Guards unit. He was killed instantly by a sniper's bullet as he emerged over the parapet of his dugout. Baldwin was described by his fellow B Company soldiers as being a "very fearless man" and "one of the bravest men that ever stood". He is buried in France at the Warlencourt British Cemetery.

s flynn




217391

2nd Lt. Wilfred Emmott Addison 18th Infantry Btn. (d.22nd Aug 1915)

Wilfred Emmott Addison was born at Yass, New South Wales during 1887. He was educated at Singleton Grammar School. His parents were Glentworth Addison and Harriet Binning Addison. Four of his uncles and several of his cousins also saw active service with the Australian Imperial Force. At the outbreak of the First World War, he was working as an accountant at the Commercial Bank of Australia. He had some previous military experience as he had completed 10 months service with the 25th Scottish Rifles and enlisted in the AIF on 23rd December 1914 and his prior military service helped secure him a commission as a second lieutenant. Addison was assigned to the 18th Infantry Battalion and departed Sydney aboard HMAT Ceramic on 25 June 1915. They were was stationed briefly in Egypt before deployment to Gallipoli.

He was killed in action on 22nd August 1915 during the landings at Suvla Bay. He died as part of a charge against Turkish positions on Hill 60. Wilfred Addison is commemorated on the Lone Pine Memorial, Gallipoli

s flynn




209027

Lt. Walter Joseph Stanislaus "Stan" O'Grady 18th Battalion

Lieutenant Walter Joseph Stanislaus O'Grady was my great grand uncle. He served in Galipoli, got very sick and was shipped out. He returned to command the School of Australian Cyclist Corps, which was later disbanded as unsuitable for the war time effort. It had been hoped that the Cyclist Corp would be more silent than horses to creep up on the enemy.

In the Second World War Uncle Walter reached the rank of Major

Colleen O'Grady






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