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Queensland Aboriginals in the 11th Light Horse Regiment

By JOL Admin | 29 November 2013

Reveille, 30th September 1931.

Reveille, 30th September 1931.

While undertaking research into Aboriginal soldiers, I discovered the above article from Reveille. It is one of several sources that identify Aboriginal stockmen being recruited into the Australian Light Horse, particularly the 11th Light Horse Regiment.

11th Light Horse Regiment, 20th Reinforcements

11th Light Horse Regiment, 20th Reinforcements

This snippet from the AWM website identifies some of the Aboriginal men sent as part of the 20th Reinforcements for the 11th Light Horse that left Sydney on the 'Uylsses', 19th December 1917. AWM records indicate that this group was the only exclusive Aboriginal group created in the AIF - only 4 non-Indigenous men were in the reinforcement group!

The following list identifies the names of the Aboriginal men who served in the 11th LHR as well as their place of residence.

2422 Pte William Bert Brown
2423 Pte Frederick Arthur Burnett
2424 Pte Edward Collins
2459 Pte Fred Collins
2458 Pte Samuel Cooper
2425 Pte Jack Costello
2426 Pte Harry Doyle
2428 Pte Frank Fisher
2427 Pte Joe Fitzroy
2429 Pte John Geary
2460 Pte John Hall
2430 Pte John Johnston, (Died of wounds, 1 June 1918)
2431 Pte Jack Kearns
2432 Pte John McKenzie Laurie
2433 Pte James Lingwoodock
2434 Pte Leonard Lynch
2438 Pte James McBride
2437 Pte David Molloy
2435 Pte Frank Morris
2436 Pte Harry Murray
2439 Pte William Nicholld
2440 Pte Jack Oliffe
2443 Pte Charlie Parkes
2441 Pte Jack Pollard
2445 Pte Edward Smith
2447 Pte Joe White
2448 Pte Leslie Thomas Wogas

Wedding of Troopers Lingwoodock and Geary, 11th LHR

Wedding of Troopers Lingwoodock and Geary, 11th LHR

This photo entitled 'Servicemens' wedding at Charlotte Street, Brisbane, 1917' features two of the Aboriginal troopers at their joint wedding prior to disembarking for the war with the 20th Reinforcements. The grooms are Private James Lingwoodock and Private John 'Jack' Geary ; the brides are Daisy Roberts and Alice Bond.

History of the Eleventh Light Horse Regiment.

History of the Eleventh Light Horse Regiment.

State Library has several items in the collections relating to the 11th Light Horse Regiment and their involvement in WW1 - History of the Eleventh Light Horse Regiment provides the official regimental history of a remarkable group of men.

Des Crump

Indigenous Languages Researcher, Queensland Memory


References and Further Reading

Hammond, E. W. (1942) History of the 11th Light Horse Regiment, Fourth Light Horse Brigade, Australian Imperial Forces : War 1914-1919J 940.41294 HAM

Pratt, R. (1993) Biographical register of Queensland Aborigines who served in the Great War, 1914-1918. P 940.403 pra

Queensland’s Indigenous Servicemen Digital Story and Oral History 2015. Digital Story 29841

Ration Shed Museum (2015) The boys from Barambah: The story of the black diggers of Barambah-Cherbourg of World War 1. JUVQ 940.400899915 NEW

Scarlett, P. (2011) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander volunteers for the AIF: the Indigenous response to World War One. Q 940.40994 SCA

Servicemens' wedding at Charlotte Street, Brisbane, 1917. JOL Negative 60511

Winegard, T. C. (2012) Indigenous peoples of the British dominions and the First World War. 940.341 2012


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