There are two Yallock Honour Rolls. One is at the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp Historical Society. It is pictured, left. It has 29 names on it. The other one, with 52 names and photographs is at the Lang Lang R.S.L. It is pictured, below. I do not know why there are two Boards - perhaps one was in the Hall and the other in the School or maybe one went missing and new one was made and then the original was re-discovered later?
There is an article in the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun of July 31, 1918 about the unveiling of the Honour Roll on Wednesday, July 24 1918 by the Hon A. Downward, M.L.A. The Board is described as "this specimen is a particularly fine one and contains the honored names and photographs of 57 local boys. The date of enlistment is also given. The Board is of Australian blackwood and is the work of Mr. W.J Tiller of Little Collins Street, Melbourne" This is presumably the Board now held at Lang Lang, although it has 52 names and not the 57 mentioned in the article (and surely there weren't three Yallock Honour Boards!)You can access the article about the Honour Board unveiling here
When I first published this post I didn't know the location of the Honour Board at Lang Lang, Lynne Bradley, President of the Narre Warren Family History Group told me about it and supplied the photograph, below.
What follows is a list of the soldiers taken from the Honour Board at the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp Historical Society and the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun article - I have only seen a photo of the Lang Lang Board, so I assume that all the names on the Board are listed in the article. The information below also contains the Soldier's fate (i.e. when they Returned to Australia after active service or when they were Killed in Action) and their Service Number (SN) -so you can look up their full service record on the National Archives website (www.naa.gov.au). When I talk about the Honour Board, I am referring to the one held at the Koo-Wee-Rup Swamp Historical Society; when I talk about the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun article I am referring to the one published July 31, 1918. I have also used an article called "Familes at Yallock" written by H.J. Boxshall, which is published in the book The Good Country: Cranbourne Shire by Niel Gunson. It is transcribed, here.
Bateson, George (SN 1307) George was born in New Zealand and he enlisted on November 10, 1914 at the age of 21. His next of kin was his father, Elias Bateson of Yannathan. George Returned to Australia on December 30, 1918. Mr Boxshall writes that Mr Elias Bateson was a member of the first School Committee and donated land for the Methodist Church.
Coates, Lawrence (SN 2623a) Laurence enlisted on July 19, 1915 aged 21. He was born in Koo-Wee-Rup. Laurence was Killed in Action in France on August 18, 1916.
Collyer, John Clements Leslie (SN 1018) Known as Les, he enlisted September 15, 1914 at the age of 19. His next of kin was his father, Eli Collyer of Yallock. He suffered a number of wounds including a bullet wound to the left hip and he Returned to Australia on March 11, 1916 and was discharged on medical grounds.
Collyer, Russell. Russell is listed in the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun article but I can not find him on the National Archives or War Memorial sites. I believe this is Stanley Russell Collyer who was born in 1899 to Eli and Francis Collyer and thus he was a brother of Les, above.
De Forest, Gilbert (51347) Gilbert was a 32 year old farmer from Monomeith when he enlisted on December 27, 1917. His next of kin was his wife, Margaret. He Returned to Australia on June 19, 1919. Gilbert is incorrectly listed in the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun list as G.D. Forrest.
De Little, John Cyril (SN 220) John enlisted on July 17, 1915 aged 23. He was a farmer and his next of kin was his father Edward Vernon de Little of Koo-Wee-Rup. John was Killed in Action in France on October 10, 1916. John is incorrectly listed in the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun article as J.D. Little.
Donaldson, Norman Stanley ( SN 84) Norman enlisted on August 18. 1914 aged 22. He was living in Elsternwick and his father, John Walter Donaldson, was his next of kin. Norman Returned to Australia on July 12, 1919. What was his Yallock connection? He was the son of John Walter and Mary Jane (nee Waring) Donaldson and a Mary J. Donaldson owned land at Yallock according to the Cranbourne Shire Rate Books in the early 1910s. There is a report in the Lang Lang Guardian of June 24, 1914 about Mrs Donaldson selling her Finck's Road property. There is also a Walter R Donaldson owning land in the Rate Books at Yallock - this may the W. Donaldson, a brick layer referred to by Mr Boxshall. This is, I believe, Walter Rehm Donaldson who is in the Electoral Roll at Koo-Wee-Rup in 1914. His wife, Leah Agnes (nee Robinson) is listed at Yallock. Not sure how these families are connected.
Harker, Robert Herd (SN 345) Robert enlisted on July 19, 1915 at the age of 28 and was Killed in Action in France, one year later, on July 20 1916.
Harker, William Thomas (SN 16235) William enlisted at the age of 34 in January 1916 and was discharged as medically unfit in February 1917, he then enlisted again on July 2, 1917, served overseas and Returned to Australia on May 6, 1919.
Hatty, David Samuel (SN 279) Known as Sam, enlisted at the age of 22 on August 25, 1914. He served overseas and Returned to Australia on March 8, 1917 and was medically discharged as he suffered from chronic rheumatism.
The Hatty boys were the sons of William and Jessie Augusta (nee Brown) Hatty and the family was living in Timboon when they enlisted. According to the Electoral Rolls they had previously lived in Yallock for a number of years.
Henry, Robert (SN 344) Robert enlisted on July 8, 1915 at the age of 19. His next of kin was his father, William Henry of 'Grassmere', Yallock. Robert was reported missing in July 1916 and had been captured by the Germans. He was released when the War ended, repatriated to England and Returned to Australia on March 2, 1919.
Izzard, Horace Valentine (SN 373) Horace enlisted on February 22, 1915 aged one month off 28 years. He Returned to Australia on March 9, 1919.
Horace and Ralph were the sons of Charles Izzard of Yallock. Mr Boxshall writes that Charles was a saddler and the Secretary of the first Yallock Progress Association.
Leeson, Arthur Leslie (SN 4797) Arthur enlisted on July 13, 1915 at the age of 28. He Returned to Australia on May 29, 1919.
The Leeson boys were the sons of Arthur and Mary (nee Kalmbach) Leeson of Yannathan; Arthur had already died at the time of their enlistment. Both Alfred and Arthur were granted Soldier Settlement farms, you can read Alf's file here and Arthur's file, here. They were all born locally - Alf in Clyde, Claude in Caldermeade and Arthur's birth place is listed as Monham Heath, but I believe this is actually Monomeith. The Koo-Wee-Rup Sun list has an R. Leeson - this is possibly a mistake, as they don't list Arthur.
Alf, Norman, and Thomas were the sons of Thomas and Maria Light. Maria, address Yallock, was the next of kin listed for Norman and Thomas. The father, Thomas, was the next of kin listed for Alf - the address at the time was Tarwin Lower.
McGhee, Gordon General (SN 22949) Gordon was the brother of Donald Malachi and he enlisted at the age of 23 on October 27, 1915. Gordon Returned to Australia on May 12, 1919. Gordon is listed on the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun article as Rawdon M'Gee - not sure where the Rawdon name came from, but is on the Honour Board as G. McGhee.
McPhee, Charles Carey (SN 422) Charles was a Methodist Home Missionary and he enlisted at the age of 29 on May 10, 1916. He was reported missing in France in April 1918 and became a 'Prisoner of War in German hands'. He was released after the War and Returned to Australia on February 10, 1919. Charles has been stationed at the Methodist Mission at Yallock before his appointment.
O'Donnell, D According to the list in the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun there was a D. O'Donnell who served in the War. This was likely to be a brother of Joseph and Michael (see below) as there is correspondence from Joseph, dated March 1918, in Michael's file asking about the whereabouts of Michael as they had lost touch as 'we had parted for about five years' and it also mentions 'my youngest brother' who was serving in France. I haven't worked out who he is.
O'Donnell, Joseph Daniel (SN 3602) Joseph enlisted on September 17, 1915 aged 25. His next of kin was his father, M. O'Donnell of Koo-Wee-Rup and he was also born in Koo-Wee-Rup. He Returned to Australia on September 26, 1917 and had 'severe corns on the sole of the left foot'. Joseph was listed as Michael's next of kin, after he returned home because their father 'could not be traced'.
O'Donnell, Michael Alexander (SN 730) Michael enlisted at the age of 25 on November 27, 1914.He was born in Ballarat. He had a colourful military history with a range of disciplinary issues. He received a gun shot wound to his shoulder, suffered a fractured skull and Died of Wounds on July 17 1918. Michael was living in Sydney when he enlisted but his next of kin was his father, Michael James O'Donnell of Yannathan. Michael's will, in his file at the National Archives has the family's address as Yallock.
Mr Boxshall has O.W Reitchel living at Fincks Road - he was a bricklayer; the Honour Roll has A. Reitschel and P. Reitschel and the 1914 Electoral Roll has Arthur and Percy Rietschel listed at Wonthaggi, so that's three different spellings on the surname. Arthur (b. 1888) and Percy (b. 1889) are the sons of Otto William and Helen (nee O'Neil) Rietschel, I think that's the correct spelling. Helen is in the Electoral Roll at Yallock in 1905 and 1906 and then I can't find her and I believe Otto died in 1901. This is what I had found out about Arthur and Percy, but I couldn't find any trace of their enlistment until once again, Lynne Bradley from the Narre Warren & District Family History Group discovered the answer. It turns out that Helen (also known as Ellen) remarried in 1903 to William James Jones and the boys enlisted as Arthur Jones and Percy Jones. Perhaps it was because there was so much anti-German feeling at the time, they wanted to hide a German sounding name. Arthur (SN 2673) enlisted on July 28, 1915 aged 27, occupation wheeler, next of kin was his mother Ellen Jones of Hicksborough, Wonthaggi. Arthur Returned to Australia on January 8, 1919. Percy (SN 1403) enlisted a day later than his brother, on July 29. He was 26 years old and also a wheeler, Ellen was also his next of kin. Percy served overseas and then Returned to Australia on January 31, 1918 and was discharged on medical grounds on May 28, 1918 suffering from 'myalgia and muscular atrophy'
Scharf, Richard Albert (SN 7961) Richard was 19, a shop fitter and he enlisted on July 13, 1915. He Died of Wounds received whilst fighting in France on May 1, 1917.
Alfred and Richard were the sons of Henry and Liselle (nee Fritz) Scharf. Mr Boxshall writes that Henry Scharf was a carpenter and had left Germany to escape militarism. They lived on Finck's Road at Yallock, although they were in St Kilda Road, Elsternwick when the boys enlisted.
Sherriff, Alfred (SN 2994) Alf enlisted on May 23, 1916 at the age of 36. He was a farmer from Lang Lang and his next of kin was his wife,Sarah Janet Sherriff (nee Richardson) He Returned to Australia on January 2, 1919 and was discharged from the Army as medically unfit in March 1919 due to Rheumatism and Functional Dyspepsia. The 1917 Electoral Roll lists Alf and Sarah at Yannathan, so I presume that was the Yallock connection.
Charles was welcomed home at a function in Yallock held on July 12 1917 at the Public Hall and he sent the letter above to the Lang Lang Guardian thanking the residents for the home coming.
Wright, John William (SN 646) John enlisted on September 24, 1914 aged 21. He was born in Yannathan and his next of kin was his mother, Isabella. John Returned to Australia on October 26, 1918. He was the brother of Marmaduke Wright, below.
Wright, Marmaduke George (SN 703) Listed as G. Wright on the Honour Board and Duke Wright in the Koo-Wee-Rup Sun article, so we'll call him Duke. Duke was the son of George and Isabella Wright, who lived in Hall Road, Yallock, although the 1909 Electoral Roll has their address as Yannathan, once again it seems that both names were used interchangeably. Duke was born in Koo-Wee-Rup and he enlisted on February 23, 1916 aged 20. Isabella was his next of kin and she was living in Shepparton East, she was there when John enlisted as well. Duke Returned to Australia on January 25, 1919.