|ALLEN Henry Jobe|
|Other Ranks||Lance Corporal|
|Town||Eumundi; Woodford & Beerburrum Soldier Settlement (lot 130 Maleny)|
|Date Enlisted||1st June 1916|
|British War Medal|
Henry Jobe Allen was born on January 10th 1891 in Woodford, Queensland second son of Edward and Alice Allen. Henry enlisted with his older brother Edward on June 1st 1916. Both boys were attached to the 9th Battalion. Henry was in the 21st reinforcements and his brother in the 22nd. He is described on his service records as 5ft 8inches tall, 143 lbs with a ruddy complexion, blue eyes and light brown hair.
Henry sailed from Brisbane on HMAT Boonah on October 21st, disembarking in Plymouth on January 1st 1917. His brother followed on the Marathon leaving Brisbane on October 27th and arriving in Plymouth on January 9th. Both brothers were admitted to hospital with scabies, Edward on February 4th and discharged Feb 9th and then both Edward and Henry on February 14th, this time Edward was diagnosed with mumps and Henry was also found to have mumps. Edward was once again discharged on March 8th while Henry remained in hospital till March 14th when he “marched in” to 3rd training battalion in Durrington from hospital.
On May 14th the brothers left for France and was taken on strength by the CO 9th Battalion on June 1st. The 9th had taken part in the advance to the Hindenburg Line in March and April and were now billetted at RIBEMONT. June and early July were quiet for the 9th battalion with days spent training, cleaning , repairing and organising their equipment, clothes and horses for a move planned for July 23rd.
The Battalion had been moving billets over the past few months and continued to do so through August, by August 7th they were billeted in Staples preparing to march out to Vieux-Berquin. A substantial number of Australian troops were massing in the area and training continued through the early part of September. The battalion moved to Ouderdom by September 16th and final preparations for moving into line were made on September 19th ; they were heading into “The Battle of Polygon Wood” Casualties sustain by the 9th were: killed 3 officers and 36 other ranks, missing 20 other ranks, wounded 6 officers and 178 other ranks.
We know from a letter dated June 20th 1921 in his brother Edward’s Service records that Henry took part in the Battle of Polygon Wood. The letter reads in part:-
“Sir I am the Brother of Pte E H Allen. I was with him in the Battle of Polygon Wood on 20th September 1917 but I did not see him after the battle had started but Pte Burke A Co 9th Btn told me that my Brother was killed on braud Sean Bridge Pashandale Menning Road near the forward Dressing
Station at that time 20th Sep 1917 this is all the Details I can give ..........” [sic]
They were still on the line in October with artillery on both sides active on Oct 1st but were relieved by the 8th Battalion on the 2nd but only moved back to the half-way house, moving back towards the front each day until they relieved the 8th on the Support Line on October 5th and on the 6th were “subjected to Severe enemy shelling”. On the 7th they relieved the 11th Battalion on the line staying on the line through to the night of the 9th when they were relieved by the 30th. Total battle casualties for the period spent in the forward area were; killed 1 officer and 33 other ranks, missing 5 other ranks and wounded 8 officers and 101 other ranks. Among the wounded was Henry.
Henry was wounded in action on October 7th. On October 10th this was amended to read “Classified Shell Shock”. Amongst his records is a document that tells us more. It was filled out by the CO of the 9th Battn.
The page headed “Urgent and Confidential” gives insight into the then new idea that men could be injured WITHOUT displaying any physical wounds and a growing understanding of the condition “Shell Shock”. It is headed with the following.
“Report to be rendered in the case of Officers and other ranks who, without any visible wound, become non-effective from physical conditions claimed or presumed to have originated from effects of British or enemy weapons in action.”
The document was filled out by his CO and reads in part......
“He reported Sick on 7-10-17 and was transfered.........................................
On admission his condition (2) Pains in head + back Slight tremors.
He states that (3) he was blown up by a shell in front line trenches the
night of Oct 6 – 7.........................Date 19-10-17.”
“I certify that the above-named was subjected in the course of his duty to exceptional exposure of the following nature Severe enemy shelling whilst in Front line trenches. Pte Allen was blown up by a shell as states above”
On November 18th he returned to HAVRE, rejoining his unit on December 1st. During his time in hospital the battalion had been involved in Broodsinde Ridge and Ypres. The battalion’s billets were spread over 10 villages and the rest of the month was spent in training and recovery.
The battalion was on the Front Line Messines Sector on December 16th and finally back into reserves on Christmas day. The battalion was finally relieved by the 11th on the night of the 9th of January and drew back to WULVERGHEM where they took part in working parties and training until the 23rd when once more they were on the front line this time relieving the 6th in the OOSTTAVERNE SECTOR and the rest of the moth was spent in working parties improving defencesand accomodation. On the 31st they were once more on the move this time by light rail to DE KENNEBAK then marching on to quarters in NEUVE EGLISE.
Henry had two weeks leave in England latein February before returning to his Battalion in the front line in Hollebrke BELGIUM.
6.3.18 “In the evening an intense bombardment with gas shells occurred. There were very high casualties, most of the cases developing their symptoms the following morning.”
War Diaries 9th AIF
They were once again gassed at the end of the month and Hery was admitted to hospital on the 30th The battalion was once more on the move from Flanders to the Somme. The 6th of April, the day Henry rejoined his unit) they entrained to Caestre Amiens, “a cup of hot cocoa was provided by the WMCA for each man on detraining” and then marched about 5 miles to an overnight billet before moving out again at 1pm to march a further 5 miles to FLESSELLES. They stayed there for 2 more days training and organising as per orders before moving off again for the march to miens. The next day they were bound for Hazebrouck and helped stop the German spring offensive.
They stayed in the area for the next few months with Henry being admitted to the field hospital with burns to his left foot. He spent close to the next full month in hospital before being granted 3 weeks
special leave in September. He went to Signalling School in October rejoining his unit on November
9th. Henry was appointed L/Cpl on December 28th 1918 and spent February and March in the Corps workshops before going to the UK on leave on April 12th 1919, returning to France at the end of his leave. Henry “marched out” from France to England on May 28th 1919 and finally returned to Australia on HMAT disembarking on 20th August 1919.
Henry married Margaret Murtagh on June 10th 1920 in Queensland. He continued to farm in Chinaman’s Creek as he had before going to war and moved to Tinana later in life.
Side Anecdote provided by Christine Sirl
"WW1 digger Ronnie Cairns married Maud Allen the sister of two other WW1 diggers Ted and Henry Allen. Before Ted and Henry Allen went to war they climbed up two tall trees and cut the tops off them making their own memorial. The two dead trees stood side by side for many years. Emma Sirl nee Ehlerth’s son Roy remembers seeing them in the 1930s. Ted was killed WW1. Apparently Henry was skilled working with iron and could do things many blacksmiths couldn’t."
|Date of Birth||January 10th 1891|
|Place of Birth||Woodford, Queensland|
|Ship Sailed On||HMAT Boonah|
|Date Ship Sailed||21st October 1916|
|Date Returned to Australia||20th August 1919|
|Date of Death||14th March 1976|
|Place of Death||Maroochydore Queensland|
|Age at Death||85 years|
|Where Buried||Gheerulla Cemetery, Maroochy Shire|
Eumundi & District Roll of Honour Board, Eumundi Memorial School of Arts Hall, Memorial Drive, Eumundi
Kenilworth and District Honour Board, Kenilworth Community Hall
Kenilworth District Anzac Honor Roll, Gheerulla Hall
Witta and District Roll of Honor, Maleny R.S.L. Memorial Hall, Bunya Street, Maleny
Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital Maleny Roll of Honor, Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital, Bean Street, Maleny
Shire of Landsborough Roll of Honour, Caloundra RSL, West Terrace, Caloundra
Nambour (Maroochy Shire) Roll of Honor Scroll, Private Collection, Nambour (this scroll was available for sale to the public after the war)
National Archives of Australia
War Service Records for
Henry Jobe Allen and Edward Hugh Allen
WW1 War Diaries 9th Battalion:- Aust War Memorial
Australian Birth Index Page No 330 Regn No 001392
Australian Marriage Index Page No 39 Regn No 001055
Australian Electoral Rolls 1903 - 1980
Burial Details from:
|Name of Researcher||Ros|
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Written by: Christine Sirl On:
06 November 2012
Before Ted and Henry Allen went to war they climbed up two tall trees and cut the tops off them making their own memorial. The two dead trees stood side by side for many years. Emma Sirl nee Ehlerth’s son Roy remembers seeing them in the 1930s. Ted was killed WW1. Apparently Henry was skilled working with iron and could do things many blacksmiths couldn’t. His sister Maudie Allen married another WW1 soldier Ronnie Cairns.
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