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Frederick William HOSKIN


Rank Reg/Ser No DOB Enlisted Discharge/Death Board
Pte 605 24y5m 18/09/14 21/5/15 DW 5

Private Frederick William Hoskin (1890 – 1915)

Booklet

Family background and early life

Frederick William Hoskin was born in Brisbane on 2 April 1890, eldest son of Frederick William and Eliza Ann (née Collins). His father was well known in Queensland for his work as District Secretary for over fifty-four years, of the Independent Order of Rechabites, a temperance organisation. Mr and Mrs Hoskin and their family of three sons and one daughter attended Wharf Street Congregational Church where Mr Hoskin was a Deacon. Their eldest son, known as 'Willie' was only 20 years old when he married Deborah Beatrice Schofield in 1910.

Enlistment

When Willie enlisted for overseas service in the Australian Imperial Force in Bundaberg on 18 September 1914, he had been working as a stockman.  His wife Cissy moved to Hamilton in Brisbane while Private Hoskin, service number 605, of 15th Infantry Battalion prepared for embarkation on HMAT Ceramic from Port Melbourne on 22 December 1914.  The 15th Battalion underwent further training in Egypt before proceeding to the Dardanelles.

Service - Dardanelles

In his book, Quinn’s Post Anzac Gallipoli, Peter Stanley describes conditions under which the Queenslanders of the 15th Battalion fought in early May 1915.  Sometimes advancing, sometimes halted under heavy machine gun fire, they dug trenches, fired rifles, threw grenades; some were wounded and some died.  

He quoted a sentence in a soldier’s letter to a friend in Fremantle:

 "Every man who came through is lucky indeed.   The unlucky ones lay scattered across the scrubby hillsides, the gullies “choked with dead and wounded”.  

In such circumstances, Private Hoskin suffered serious gunshot injury to his right shoulder. With many other wounded soldiers he crossed the Aegean Sea by hospital ship to Alexandria, Egypt where he was admitted to No 1 General Hospital for treatment.

Mrs Hoskin, Range View, Toorak Road, Hamilton received a dreaded telegram on 24 May 1915: 

 “REGRET REPORTED HUSBAND PRIVATE F. W. HOSKIN DANGEROUSLY ILL WILL ADVISE UPON RECEIPT FURTHER PARTICULARS.”

Three long worrying days later without further particulars, she sent an urgent telegram to Secretary Defence Melbourne,

“YOU REPORTED MY HUSBAND PRIVATE F.W.HOSKIN DANGEROUSLY ILL TELL ME WHERE HE IS AND NATURE SICKNESS REPLY PAID URGENT”. 

Another telegram notified her of his death on 25 May and that: 

...“he was buried in Chatby Cemetery, Grave No 2025, Archdeacon Ward officiating.”

In a Brisbane newspaper column headed ROLL OF HONOUR two notices appeared on 12 June 1915:

HOSKIN – on May 25th, from wounds received at the Dardanelles, Frederick William, beloved husband of D Beatrice (Cissy) Hoskin, of Range View, Toorak Road, Hamilton, Brisbane.

 HOSKIN – on May 25th, at the Dardanelles, from wounds received on active service, Frederick William, eldest son of Mr and Mrs Fred Hoskin, 123 Rogers Street, Gregory Terrace, Brisbane, aged 25 years.

One brown paper parcel containing Willie’s personal effects was despatched to his wife, Cissy from the Camp Quartermaster.  The contents were knives, pipe, keys, testament, purse and coins, cards, photos, letter, diary, tobacco, belt, disc.

Officers and men of the 15th Battalion remembered

An Honour Board in The Hall of Memories, Brisbane, honours the 15th Battalion, AIF with these words:

 “To perpetuate the memory of the officers and men who paid the supreme sacrifice during the Great War 1914 – 1918”.

Roll of Honour - Frederick William Hoskin
Service Number: 605
Rank: Private
Unit: 15th Battalion (Infantry)
Service: Australian Army
Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918
Date of death: 21 May 1915
Place of death: Egypt, North Africa
Cause of death: Died of wounds
Place of association: Brisbane, Australia
Cemetery or memorial details: North Africa: Chatby Military and War Memorial Cemetery
Source: AWM145 Roll of Honour cards, 1914-1918 War, Army

Select Bibliography

• National Archives of Australia, military records
• Commonwealth War Graves Commission
• Australian War Memorial, Canberra
• Peter Stanley, Quinn’s Post Anzac Gallipoli, Allen & Unwin, 2005
• Patrick Lindsay, The Spirit of Gallipoli, Hardie Grant Books, 2006
• Brisbane Courier 12 June 1915, 21 May 1918, 26 Sept 1923, 19 June 1926, 16 Nov 1936
• Wharf Street Congregational Church, Brisbane, Year Books 1909 – 1920
• Michael McKernan, Gallipoli A Short History, Allen & Unwin, 2010
• Queensland Times, 1 Oct 1944
• Sunday Mail, 4 Sept 1932

Prepared by Noel Adsett, Brisbane, Nov 2014

 

 

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