Edwin John White

Information about birth

Year of birth:
Place of birth:
Ballarat, Victoria, Australia

General information

Last known residence:
Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
Coach Painter

Army information

Australian Imperial Force
Service number:
Enlistment date:
Enlistment place:
Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
 —  Australian Infantry, 39th Bn.  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
Place of death:
Waterfields, Passchendaele, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)


Distinctions and medals 2

Points of interest 4

#1 Place of birth
#2 Last known residence
#3 Enlistment place
#4 Place of death (approximate)

My story

Edwin John White, a former carriage painter, was born in 1895 in Ballarat, Ballarat North, Victoria, Australia. He was the son of John Christopher and Rose Douglas, from 117 Humffray Street, Ballarat East, Victoria. He lived at Armstrong Street, Ballarat North, Victoria. On October 2, 1916 he enlisted in Ballarat and embarked from Melbourne on board HMAT A17 Port Lincoln on October 20, 1916, with the 4th reinforcement of the 39th Battalion, part of the 10th Australian Brigade of the 3rd Australian Division. Previously, he served in the Citizen Forces. On December 2, 1916 he transferred via Sierra Leone and he disembarked on January 9, 1917 in Plymouth, England.

On October 12, 1917 his battalion took part in the First Battle of Passchendaele, a phase in the Third Battle of Ypres. Throughout the assembly, attack and consolidation they were heavily shelled. Men were ordered to keep going forward but were held up by snipers and machine gun fire. The attack started around 5.25 a.m. They had to dig in on a line on the south border of Augustus Wood to Waterfields. The Brigade had to pull back to its start line, which was completed around 3.30 p.m.

It was during these events that Private White was killed in action. Edwin John, aged 22, was killed in action on October 12, 1917. His remains were not recovered or identified after the war. Edwin John has no known grave and is remembered on panel 25N of the Menin Gate Memorial.

Sources 4

39th Battalion Australian Infantry (Australian War Memorial, Campbell (AWM), AWM4 23/56/18).
Sources used
Australian Red Cross Wounded and Missing Enquiry Bureau (Australian War Memorial, Campbell (AWM)).
Sources used
First Australian Imperial Force Personnel Dossiers, 1914-1920 (National Archives of Australia, Canberra (NAA), B2455).
Sources used
Unit embarkation nominal rolls, 1914-18 War (Australian War Memorial, Campbell (AWM), AWM8).
Sources used

More information 4