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Ernest Otto Brutton
Portrait of E O Brutton, Broadmeadows, ca 23.02.1916
(AWM collection DA14043)
Ernest Otto Brutton (right) with cane cutters at North Queensland
Courtesy of Harold Brutton
Alias Ernest Ottoff; Bruttan
Place Luban, near Riga, Latvia
Ethnic origin German / Latvian
Father Otto Bruttan
Mother Lisa Bruttan
Wife Ada Rose Brutton (née Frost), married 1925; son Harold
Residence before arrival at Australia Left Russia at the age of 16, went to Argentina, learned the trade of electrician, was in New York in 1913
Arrived at Australia
from New York
disembarked at Sydney
Residence before enlistment Sydney
Occupation 1915 seaman AB, 1919 electrician
Service service number 1974A
POE Casula, NSW
unit 31st Battalion, 15th FAB, 7th Battery 3rd FAB
rank Private, Gunner
place Western Front, 1916-1917
casualties WIA 1917
final fate RTA 23.09.1918
discharged 28.12.1918 MU
Residence after the war Bingara, NSW; Sydney, Tully River, Tully, Frenchman's Creek, Cairns
Digitised naturalisation (NAA)
Court martial file (NAA)
Police court. - Moree Gwydir Examiner and General Advertiser, 20 October 1921, p. 2.
Innisfail notes. - Townsville Daily Bulletin, 13 April 1925, p. 9.
Field workers' claim. - The Northern Herald, Cairns, 15 April 1925, page 11.
A leg injury. - Cairns Post, 10 May 1943, p. 2.
From Russian Anzacs in Australian History:
Ernest Otto Brutton, the former seaman of German background from Latvia, served as a gunner at the Western Front until he was gassed at Ypres. On returning to Australia, he tried various things: he was a milk vendor, worked on coastal vessels, and then tried tobacco-farming and cane-cutting; finally, at Cairns, he also ended up on the waterfront.
A few Russians played an active role in returned soldier organisations, too. Ernest Brutton was a long-standing Cairns RSL member and 'marshal for ANZAC Day marches. He was responsible for making sure all the chaps march in the correct groups, army, navy, airforce; he virtually controlled the whole parade. It was quite a big job.' [remembers his son Harold].