Albert John Egan MID

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Albert John Egan MID
Egan AJ.jpg
courtesy Neville Browning
Personal Information
Date of Birth c1879
Place of Birth Brighton, Victoria
Death 7 Nov 1951
Place of Death Bedfordale, Western Australia
Age at Enlistment 34 years old
Description 5'9 ¾" (1.77m) tall ; 130 lbs
58.967 kg
; fair complexion ; blue eyes ; black hair
Occupation Orchardist
Religion Church of England
Address Albany road, Bedfordale, Western Australia
Next of Kin Mother , Mrs Mary Ann Egan
Military Information
Reg Number 3321
Date of Enlistment 27 Jul 1915
Rank Lance Corporal
Unit/Formation 11th Battalion, 11th reinforcements transferred to 51st Battalion / 13th Brigade, 4th Division
Date of Embarkation 2 Nov 1915 ‒ unknown
"unknown" contains an extrinsic dash or other characters that are invalid for a date interpretation.
Ship Embarked On HMAT A38 Ulysses at Port Suez
Date of Return 28 Feb 1919 ‒ 7 Apr 1919
Ship Returned On HMAT A68 Anchises
Fate Returned to Australia
Monument Armadale War Memorial (Bedfordale panel)
Bedfordale Roll of Honour
Armadale and Districts Roll of Honour
Medals Mentioned in Despatches
1914-15 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal

Pre War

The 1903 Electoral Roll list both he and his mother in Solomon street, Beaconsfield; 1906 a gardener living in Armadale with his mother; in 1913 a farmer with mother and spinster sister Avinia Mary (who married in 1928) in Albany road Bedfordale. Albert was President of the Bedfordale Agricultural and Horticultural Society prior to the war.

War Service

On entering Blackboy Hill camp Albert was allocated to the 18th Depot Company. On 27 Sep 1915, after two months general training, Albert was allocated to the 11th reinforcement draft for the 11th Battalion, travelling with them to Egypt.

On 7 Jan 1916 at Tel-el-Kebir in Egypt he and 366 other men from the 9th, 10th, and 11th reinforcement drafts were taken on strength by the 11th Battalion. Albert was posted to "A" Company. On 1 Mar 1916 he was one of those chosen to join the newly formed 51st Battalion at Serapeum.

The battalion spent time in the canal zone training, before being warned to be ready to move to France. Albert travelled with them to France aboard the HMT Ivernia, disembarking in Marseilles on 12 Jun 1916 after a week at sea.

Albert was appointed Lance Corporal on 1 Nov 1916 in France, and on 31 Jan 1917 entered the 13th Australian Field Ambulance with mumps. They passed him to the 38th Casualty Clearing Station on 1 Feb 1917, before rejoining his battalion on 3 Feb 1917. Albert was to spend the remainder of the war with his unit.

On 22 Jan 1918 he was granted leave in England for a fortnight (8 Feb 1918), and again on 12 Dec 1918, rejoining the battalion on 4 Jan 1919.

On 27 Jan 1919 he departed from France through Le Havre, arriving in the Sutton Veny based No. 1 Command Depot on 28 Jan 1919. On 29 Jan 1919 he moved to the Overseas Training Brigade at Longbridge Deverill until 28 Feb 1919. A month later Albert began the journey home from Devonport.

"...He was in Egypt for several months, and then went to France in the 51st. After an attack of enteric fever he was sent to the RQM Stores, and has since been promoted to Lance Corporal."[1]

Award Comment

Mention In Dispatches - Sir Gen Douglas Haig's despatch of 16th March 1919 in which he submitted names deserving of special mention:........... "EGAN, No. 3321 Private (acting Lance-Corporal) A.J., 4th Machine Gun Battalion, attached 51st Battalion."...[2][3]

However, Egan pointed out that he was never a member of the 4th Machine Gun Battalion and he sought to have the MID Certificate amended to read 51st Battalion.

Post War

Mentioned in 1922 and 1923 editions of "The Listening Post" as President of the Armadale sub-branch of the RSL.

The 1925 electoral roll again lists him as an orchardist in Bedfordale with his mother . Does not appear to marry and is in Bedfordale by himself from 1931 until his death in 1951. Mother drops off Electoral Rolls but died in Armadale aged 87 on 29 July 1936.

BEDFORDALE RESIDENT DIES The death occurred at his home, Albany Highway, Bedfordale on November 7, of Mr. Albert John Egan. He was late of the 51st Battalion AIF. The funeral took place in the Anglican portion of the Karrakatta Cemetery on Thursday afternoon, November 8.[4]

Albert was a member of the Armadale-Kelmscott Roads Board from 1924 to 1928. Egan street in Armadale is named after him.


Albert's lack of time away from his unit is very unusual, and he appears to have had a very lucky war for someone who spent 3 years in a front line Infantry Battalion albeit for a time in the Q store.


  1. "The Drill of the Foot-Hills" (PDF) (1917). Western Australia. Mar 1917. p. 9. Retrieved 16 May 2017 – via State Library of Western Australia. 
  2. published London Gazette No. 31448, dated 11 Jul 1919 page 8833, position 86.
  3. Commonwealth Gazette No. 124 - 30th Oct 1919 pp 1654, position 81
  4. "BEDFORDALE RESIDENT DIES". South Western Advertiser. 46, (2406). Western Australia. 15 November 1951. p. 1. Retrieved 22 June 2017 – via National Library of Australia. 

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