Schilling, Metser, Leven, Orloff

August 14, 2015

Fritz Schilling

  • Fritz Schilling was born in Vindava (Ventspils) in Latvia. He worked in Western Australia as a faller.
  • He served on the Western Front with the 51st Battalion. In July 1916 he was wounded in the right elbow and returned to Australia.
  • After the war he lived in outback Western Australia, continuing his occupation as a timber worker.

Peter Metser

  • Peter Metser was born on Saaremaa Island in Estonia. Working as an engineer on a ship, he came to Hobart in July 1915 and enlisted in the AIF three weeks later.
  • He served on the Western Front with the 13th Field Company Engineers as a sapper.
  • After the war he aspired to become a consul for Russia but when the plan did not eventuate, he moved to Sydney, where he worked as engineer.

Harry Leven

  • Harry Leven was born, most likely, in Kishenev in Moldova. He moved to Western Australia working as a farm labourer and gardener.
  • He served on the Western Front as a gunner in Howitzer Battery, but soon got sick with trachoma, which affected his vision. He was repatriated to Australia as medically unfit.
  • After this, he disappears from Australian records, probably because his name may have been misspelt on the enlistment form.

Nicholas d’Orloff

  • Nicholas d’Orloff was from Riga in Latvia, claimed to be a Count and could speak German, French, Russian and English. Australian police had a list of his aliases and according to their records he was a criminal, convicted for the first time in Adelaide in 1904.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Brisbane, he was discharged a few weeks later because of absence without leave. A few days later he was detained at Maryborough for wearing military uniform and was tried by a police magistrate. On suspiction of pro-German sympathies he was jailed and later transferred to a concentration camp for Germans at Liverpool and finally, in 1919, deported from the country