Archives


Wirak, Gaudzinski, Hektor, Winnin, Ilin

March 30, 2016

Alexander Wirak

  • Alexander Wirak, a seaman from Piarnu in Estonia, came to Australia in 1912 and worked as a stevedore in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 8th Battalion on the Western Front. In May 1917 he was killed at the battle for Bullecourt.

Edward Gaudzinski

  • Edward Gaudzinski from Janow in Poland came to Australia from the Russian Far East in 1911 and settled in Sydney working as a tailor. In 1913 he married an Australian girl, Mabel Elsie Blatch, and by the time of his enlistment in the AIF they had two sons.
  • He served as a sapper with the 9th Field Company Engineers on the Western Front. In July 1917 he was wounded in the right shoulder and legs, but, recovering, returned to the front.
  • After the war he lived in Kogarah, working as a tailor. His son Edward served in the AIF in WWII.

Valdimar Hektor

  • Valdimar Hektor, a seaman from Voru in Estonia, was based in Newcastle. Before enlisting in the AIF he married an Australian girl, Amy Rylatt.
  • He served with the 1st Machine Gun Battalion on the Western Front. In May 1918 he was killed at Hazebrouck.

Fritz Winnin

  • Fritz Winnin, a seaman from Riga, came to Newcastle in March 1916, jumped ship, and enlisted in the AIF the next day.
  • He served with the 5th Battalion on the Western Front until he got sick and was repatriated to Australia.
  • Returning to Australia, Winnin married the widow of his mate Valdimar Hektor. They lived in Sydney, where Fritz worked as a labourer. Their children served in the AIF in WWII.

Constantine Ilin

  • Constantine Ilin, a seaman from Aleshki in Tavrida Province in Ukraine, enlisted in the AIF together with Hektor in Newcastle.
  • He served with 1st Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front. In December 1916 he sustained heavy wounds in the back and thigh at Flers. Evacuated to England, he underwent five operations and in July 1917 sailed on board a hospital ship to Australia.
  • Soon after his discharge from the army he married an Australian girl, Sarah Maud Fletcher; they settled in Newtown in Sydney, but Constantine’s health soon deteriorated and he passed away in May 1922 from complications of his wound and nephritis. His wife died the same year in Waterfall sanatorium of TB and neurasthenia.

Anderson, Gusaloff, Snegovoy, Felipor, Pashkevitch

March 27, 2016

Anton Anderson

  • Anton Anderson, a Finnish seaman from Lavanssaari, came to Tasmania in 1912 and enlisted in the AIF in Hobart.
  • He served with the 40th Battalion on the Western Front. In April 1917, at the battle for Bullecourt, he was severely wounded and doctors had to remove his right eye. He was returned to Australia.
  • After the war he worked as a stoker living in Launceston, where he married. He later moved to Greenwell Point in NSW, where he worked as a fisherman.

Kaz-Bulat Gusaloff

  • Kaz-Bulat Gusaloff (he enlisted as Kaenolatr Gusloff), was an Ossetian from Zelginskoe. He participated in the Russo-Japanese War and came to Australia from the Russian Far East in 1914. He worked as a miner in Cloncurry and enlisted in the AIF in Charters Towers.
  • Soon after his enlistment he got sick with sciatica and was discharged as medically unfit three months later.
  • He probably returned home after the war.

Andrew Snegovoy

  • Andrew Snegovoy from Odessa came to Australia from the Russian Far East in 1910 and worked as a motor driver in Queensland.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Brisbane, he served with the 49th Battalion on the Western Front. In April 1917, at the battle for Noreuil, he was wounded in the thigh. A year later, at the battle for Dernancourt, he was wounded for the second time in the arm and face. He left his battalion on 12 September 1918, was accused of desertion and sentenced to five years’ penal servitude. Prior to deserting he had made an unsuccessful attempt to obtain a discharge, arguing that his family in Russia needed his help.
  • After the war he was returned to Australia, but in 1924 he made an attempt to see his family in Russia. He travelled as far as Harbin, but had to return back to Australia. He made a second attempt in 1928, but finally he settled in Newcastle, working as labourer.

Joe Felipor

  • Joe Felipor (his correct surname was Filipov) from Odessa had experience of service in the Russian Army and, probably, of a seaman. Arriving to Australia, he worked as a miner in the deserts of Western Australia.
  • Enlisting in the AIF he served in the tunnelling companies on the Western Front. After a conflict with his co-servicemen in October 1916 he was court martialled, but returned to the trenches. In December 1916 he was severely wounded in the arm and finally repatriated to Australia as medically unfit.
  • After the war he lived in Western Australia.

Frank Pashkevitch

  • Frank Pashkevitch (he served as Prokofii Pashkevich), a Belarusian from Borisovka in Grodno Province, came to Australia in February 1915 as a ship’s fireman.
  • He enlisted in the AIF a year later and served with the 2nd Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front.
  • After the war he settled in Melbourne, working as a fireman and labourer. In 1927 he married an Australian woman, Harriet Elizabeth Allen; his stepson, Stanley Peter Egan, served in the AIF in WWII.

Jackson, Goralski, Rinkevich, Lindrose, Pyziak

March 25, 2016

Gustave Jackson

  • Gustave Jackson (his true name was Gustav Kaeramees) from Dago (Hiiumaa) Island in Estonia worked in South Australia as a labourer.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Port Pirie and served with the 5th Pioneer battalion on the Western Front. He was wounded in the leg in January 1917; although he recovered, he later suffered from mental delusions and was repatriated to Australia.
  • After the war he recovered and was seafaring all over the world, but the 1950s he returned to Australia and naturalised.

John Goralski

  • John Goralski (he served as Guralsky), a Polish man from Falkow, was conscripted in the Russian Army as a railway soldier, deserted and came to Darwin from the Russian Far East in 1915. He worked on the railway construction at Pine Creek.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Darwin, was transferred to Brisbane and discharged three months later as medically unfit.
  • After that he worked in Sydney as a gardener and later moved to South Australia.

Osiph Rinkevich

  • Osiph Rinkevich was born in Razekne in Latvia, from where his family migrated to Tomsk Province in Siberia. He came to Australia in 1913 and after two years in Sydney and Port Pirie moved to Darwin.
  • He enlisted in the AIF together with Goralsky. While in training camp in Brisbane he met a number of other Russian compatriots enlisted in the AIF and his collection of WWI photographs began growing. Rinkevich served with the 47th Battalion on the Western Front; in May 1918 he was transferred to the 46th Battalion and finished the war in the Light Trench Mortar Battery. He was wounded twice: in June 1917 in the battle for Messines in the leg and September 1918 near Peronne he was wounded by a bomb blast in the head and in the arm.
  • Recovering after the war, Rinkevich worked as a labourer on the railway construction and a cane cutter in North Queensland. In 1925 he married Ukrainian girl Maria Gavriluk and had son, Valentine. After WWII they ran a chicken farm near Innisfail and an oyster farm on Dunk Island. The Rinkevich family preserved his collection of WWI photographs and was recently reunited with the family of Osiph’s brother in Siberia.

Gustav Lindrose

  • Gustav Lindrose, a Finnish seaman from Abo (Turku), came to Australia in 1908 and continued seafaring.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Newcastle, he served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front, attaining the rank of corporal. In March 1918 he was wounded at Amiens and in August 1918 at Mont St Quentin.
  • In 1916, before leaving for the front, Lindrose married an Australian girl, Violet Evelin Kirchner. After the war they lived in Newcastle, where he worked as a rigger; during WWII he served in the Royal Australian Navy.

Frank Pyziak

  • Frank Pyziak from Widzew in Poland came to Australia in 1909, probably as a seaman. In Australia he worked as a labourer and orchardist in Bodalla and Seven Hills, NSW.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 53rd Battalion on the Western Front. In March 1918 he was wounded in the right shoulder at Amiens, and in September 1918 he was wounded in the leg at the battle for Peronne.
  • After the war he lived in Port Kembla and Wollongong; during WWII he enlisted in the AIF and served in the garrison battalions.

Minor, Lindelof, Tois, Jansson, Johansson

March 21, 2016

David Minor

  • David Minor, a Jewish seaman from Vilna (Vilnius), came to Sydney in December 1915 and enlisted soon afterwards.
  • He served with the 1st Battalion on the Western Front. In April 1917 he was wounded in the leg at the battle at Doignes. Recovering, he returned to his battalion and was killed in May 1918.
  • His brother, living in the USA, was found after the war and received his medals.

Edward Lindelof

  • Edward Lindelof, a seaman from Raumo in Finland, came to Australia in 1909 and worked in South Australia.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Bathurst, he served with the 1st Battalion on the Western Front. In April 1917 he was wounded in the neck and arm together with Minor. Returning to the front he was wounded in September 1917 at Mennin Road near Ypres.
  • He returned to Australia after the war, continued seafaring and died in Samarai in New Guinea in 1932.

Johannes Tois

  • Johannes Tois, an Estonian seaman from the Piarnu area, enlisted in the AIF in Bathurst together with Lindelof.
  • He served with the 53rd Battalion on the Western Front. In September 1917 he was wounded in the head in Polygon Wood near Ypres and died of wounds the following day.
  • His father was found in Estonia after the war and received his medals.

Franz Hjalmar Jansson

  • Franz Hjalmar Jansson, a seaman from Naantali in Finland, came to Australia in 1905 and worked as a stevedore and seaman.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Adelaide, was allocated to the 3rd Pioneer Battalion, but left his ship on the way to the front, in Fremantle.
  • No information about his later life has been found.

Einar Johansson

  • Einar Johansson, another Finnish seaman, from Abo (Turku), was in Australia since 1911. He enlisted in the AIF in Adelaide, probably together with Jansson.
  • He served with the 7th Field Company Engineers on the Western Front, attaining the rank of corporal.
  • After the war he lived in Semaphore in South Australia, working as a seaman.

Kozachuk, Afendikoff, Ananieff, Evaschkevicht, Forster

March 15, 2016

Ksenofont Kozachuk

  • Ksenofont Kozachuk, a Ukrainian from Kosivka in Kiev Province, came to Australia in 1914, after spending a year in Canada and the USA. In Australia he worked as a miner, first in Kurri Kurri and then in Mount Morgan, and as a cane cutter in North Queensland.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Cairns, but was discharged a month later as medically unfit.
  • After his discharge he continued his occupation as a cane cutter and a trimmer on the ships. In 1921 he married an Australian girl, Bessie Morris, and they settled in Collinsville, where Ksenofont worked in a coal mine. They had three children, but the marriage did not last. In 1926 Ksenofont made a trip to the New Guinea goldfields, but without success, and returned to his work as a coal miner. He died in 1987 aged 96.

Cemon Afendikoff

  • Cemon Afendikoff, from Odessa, was probably of Greek origin. He came to Australia in 1915 as a seaman.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Sydney, he served with the 20th Battalion on the Western Front. In March 1917, at the battle for Lagnicourt, he was wounded in the thigh; just after recovering he was wounded again in May 1917 at Bullecourt, in the arm. In January 1918 he returned to his battalion and was severely gassed in May 1918. Nevertheless he recovered and finished the war on the battlefront.
  • After the war he carried his swag all over Australia, from Nimitabel in the Snowy Mountains to Gordonvale in North Queensland.

Ezir Ananieff

  • Ezir (Elizar) Ananieff, a Russian from Tara in Tomsk Province in Siberia, came to Australia in about 1913 and worked as a miner.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Sydney, together with Afendikoff, was allocated to a tunnelling company, but discharged three months later. In February 1917 he made one more attempt to enlist in the AIF, but was rejected as medically unfit (he had a broken leg).
  • After the war he settled in Maranboy in the Northern Territory, working as a tin miner.

Cheslav Evaschkevicht

  • Cheslav Evaschkevicht, a Belarusian from Minsk (although he also claimed to be born in Odessa) came to Australia in 1915.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Melbourne, he received a gunshot wound in the thigh while still in the training camp and was discharged in November 1916 with the note ‘not likely to become an efficient soldier’.
  • In 1917 he married an Australian girl, Myra Victoria Shacklock, and disappears from records soon after that.

Sergius Forster

  • Sergius Forster was a Russian subject born in New York. Soon after his birth his family returned to Russia and seven years later moved to London. Educated in England, he came to Melbourne in 1913 and worked as a clerk.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 39th Battalion on the Western Front. In June 1917 he was gassed and transferred to England, where he worked in the AIF depot Headquarters. Returning to Australia in 1919 he reenlisted in 1920 and was in the home service in a supply and transport unit.
  • After the war he lived in Melbourne working as a clerk and printer.

Three February 1916 enlistees without service records

March 13, 2016
  • Carl Erickson, a Finnish fireman from Helsinki, came to Australia in 1912. He enlisted in the AIF in New South Wales. He was obviously discharged quickly, as in October 1916 he was registered as an alien in New South Wales.
  • Joseph Hanke, probably a Baltic German, enlisted in the AIF in NSW.
  • William Vassili Peremes, a seaman from Moon (Muhu) Island in Estonia, came to Sydney in February 1916 and enlisted a few days later. He was discharged soon and lived in Melbourne, becoming a waterside worker.

Brofeldt, Krantz, Gorodezky, Lokki, Nyman

March 9, 2016

Albert Brofeldt

  • Albert Brofeldt, a Finnish seaman from Nyslott (Savonlinna), most likely came to Australia in 1901; by the time of his enlistment in the AIF he was over forty and living in Western Australia working as a miner and seaman.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Fremantle and served with the Machine gun section of the 28th Battalion on the Western Front but in 1917 was returned to Australia due to his age.
  • After the war he lived in Fremantle and died in 1924.

Samuel Harold Krantz

  • Samuel Harold Krantz, from the Jewish agricultural colony of Novopavlovka in Ukraine, came to Australia in 1905 with his younger brother Albert. He lived first in Broken Hill and then moved to Perth where he worked in a hotel. Before leaving for the front he married a Jewish girl, Jeanetta Loffman.
  • He served with the 43rd Battalion on the Western Front, being promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal. In July 1918, during the attack on Hamel, Samuel set an example of ‘bravery and initiative’ to his platoon, for which he was awarded the Military Medal. Soon after that, during the advance to Péronne, he was wounded in the mouth.
  • Returning to Australia, Samuel changed his surname to Grant; he had two daughters and worked as a draper.

Ivan Gorodezky

  • Ivan Gorodezky, a Ukrainian from Lipovka in Kamenets-Podolsky Province, was an engineer by trade.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne and served as a driver with Field Ambulance regiments on the Western Front.
  • After the war he was discharged in London, intending to live in France, where he married.

Johannes Lokki

  • Johannes Lokki, a Finnish seaman from Gogland Island, came to South Australia in 1910 and was engaged in coast sailing.
  • He served with the 3rd Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front.
  • After the war he continued to work as a seaman; in 1933 he married an Australian woman, Clara Matilda Murphy, and lived in Sydney. During WWII he became a wharf labourer.

Hjalmar Nyman

  • Hjalmar Nyman, a Finnish seaman from Helsingfors (Helsinki), enlisted in the AIF together with Lokki and served together with him the 3rd Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front.
  • In September 1918, during the advance at Tincourt, Nyman’s initiative, coolness and courage helped to oust the enemy’s machine gun and sniper posts and save his comrades’ lives. He was awarded the Military Medal for this exploit.
  • After the war he married an Australian girl, Olive Rita, settling in Port Adelaide. He worked as a seaman and crane driver. During WWII he enlisted in the AIF and served in the Volunteer Defence Corps.

Kunin, Bloom, Bremer, Bostrom, Nyblom

March 7, 2016

Gregory Kunin

  • Gregory Kunin, a young Jewish man from Volozhin in Belarus, came to Australia with his sister Leah in 1914. They settled in Melbourne where he worked as a carpenter.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, Kunin served with the 22nd Battalion on the Western Front. In September 1917 he was killed on the outpost at Westhoek Ridge near Ypres.
  • His mother Basia was found after the war and received his awards.

Gustaf Bloom

  • Gustaf Bloom came from the Aland Islands in Finland and worked as a bricklayer labourer.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Newcastle and served in the 35th Battalion on the Western Front.
  • After the war he lived in Maffra in Victoria, working as a radio mechanic and serviceman. During WWII he served in the AIF in the Heavy Wireless Group.

Frederick Bremer

  • Frederick Bremer from Latvia probably came to Australia as a seaman.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Narrabri in NSW. Arriving to Plymouth with the 33rd Battalion, he got sick with pneumonia and died a few days later, in August 1916.
  • His family in Latvia was found after the war.

Jarl Oswald Bostrom

  • Jarl Oswald Bostrom, a Finnish seaman from Helsingfors (Helsinki), came to Australia in 1916.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Newcastle and served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front. In June 1917 he was wounded at Messines and in October 1917 gassed at Passchendaele. During the next year he was twice a casualty: in May 1918 he was gassed and then wounded in the leg in July 1918.
  • After the war he settled in Sydney, continuing his occupation as a fireman. In 1922 he married an Australian girl, Adeline Violet Stanley; they had four sons, but his wife died in 1928 and Jarl would continue to commemorate her in newspaper advertisements on the anniversaries of her death. Their two sons served in the AIF in WWII.

Frans Albert Nyblom

  • Frans Albert Nyblom, another Finnish seaman from Bromarv, came to Australia in 1913.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne and served with the 38th Battalion on the Western Front. A month after his arrival to the front, in December 1916, he was wounded in the leg at Armentieres and taken POW. He survived and was returned to Australia in 1919.
  • After the war he married Norah Parfery and lived with his family in Melbourne, working as a seaman. During WWII he served in the Volunteer Defence Corps, while his son Francis Alfred served on Bougainville Island.

Nieminen, Kulmar, Rybakov, Myyrylainen, Brasche

March 5, 2016

Adolph Nieminen

  • Adolph Nieminen, a Finnish seaman, enlisted in the AIF in Brisbane.
  • Three months later he left his unit and continued to serve on the ships.

Jan Kulmar

  • Jan Kulmar, a Latvian sailor, whose mother lived in Libava (Liepaja), enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • He arrived with reinforcements to the 2nd Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front in November 1916 and was killed a few weeks later at the Somme.
  • His widowed mother Anna received an Australian pension after the war.

Michael Silas Rybakov

  • Michael Silas Rybakov, a Russian seaman from Revel (Tallinn) in Estonia, enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 5th Battalion on the Western Front and was killed in September 1917 at the battle on Mennin Road in Ypres.
  • When enlisting in the AIF he refused to make a will and his father was never found.

Artur Wilho Myyrylainen

  • Artur Wilho Myyrylainen, a Finnish sailor, came to Australia in February 1916, and, while in Adelaide, was assaulted by a Belgian seaman on suspicion that he was a German. He enlisted soon afterwards.
  • A few days later he deserted the camp, was caught and court martialled, but in May 1916 he was released as medically unfit.
  • After the war he continued his occupation as a seaman and most likely naturalized in the USA.

Martin Brasche

  • Martin Brasche, a seaman from Riga, came to Australia in 1915.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne and served with the 2nd Pioneer battalion on the Western Front. In July 1918 he was gassed but returned to his battalion after recovery.
  • After the war he continued his occupation as a seaman, living in Sydney.

Antipanoff, Chopovsky, Elfimoff, Gooshia, Provaka

March 4, 2016

Peter Antipanoff

  • Peter Antipanoff, a clerk from Nizhni Novgorod, came to Australia from the Russian Far East in 1913.
  • He enlisted in the AIF in Queensland, most likely in Rockhampton, but was soon discharged; his service records have not been found.
  • After that he moved to Sydney with another unsuccessful enlistee, Gooshia, and worked as a labourer in Broken Hill and Queensland; in May 1918 he left for Russia.

Jack Chopovsky

  • Jack Chopovsky (his name was also written as Jopowsky), who gave his place of origin as an the unrecognisable Ceaorowe, came to Australia in 1912 and worked as a smelter in Mount Morgan.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Rockhampton, he was discharged a few days later as medically unfit.
  • After that he lived in North Queensland, applying to leave for Russia, but most likely stayed in Australia with his Russian wife Anastasia Ezersky.

John Elfimoff

  • John Elfimoff, a Russian from Samara, came to Australia from the Russian Far East in 1913. He was accompanied by his wife Domna and a son. By the time of his enlistment in the AIF he was working as a miner in Mount Morgan and had three children.
  • When his wife eloped with another Russian, John enlisted in the AIF, but was discharged a few days later as medically unfit.
  • After the war he lived in North Queensland working as a labourer and miner. In 1921 he had plans to return to Russia, but his destiny is unknown.

Garacime Gooshia

  • Garacime Gooshia (he also used name Gooshen), a Russian from Tomsk in Siberia, came to Australia in 1912 and worked in Mount Morgan.
  • He enlisted in the AIF with the group of Russians in Rockhampton, but was discharged as medically unfit.
  • After the war he worked in Mount Mulligan and was married to a Russian woman, Anna Petroff; in 1925 he died of tuberculosis, which he developed from his work in copper mines.

Stephen Provaka

  • Stephen Provaka, from Surazh in Chernigov Province, came to Australia in 1914 from the Russian Far East and worked as a miner in Mount Morgan. His original name was Stepan Proiavka and he served in the AIF under this name.
  • He was the only one in the group of Russians who enlisted in the AIF in Rockhampton who saw active service on the Western Front, where he served with the 25th Battalion.
  • After the war he wanted to return to Russia, but later married an Australian girl, Bertha Finnimore, and their family lived in Brisbane.