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Private Augustus Davies honoured by Naomi Leith Ross 27 April 2014

M

y great grandfather, Augustus Hodgkinson Davies, was born in Port Douglas, Far North Queensland, being of Aboriginal heritage. His mother, a housemaid, passed when he was 3 weeks of age. It is alleged that his father had also passed and we have no knowledge of either of his birth parents. Grandad was subsequently adopted by his mum’s employers, Mr Thomas Clinton Davies and Mrs Jane Mary Davies nee O’Loughlin. Mr Davies was a Bank Manager for the Queensland National Bank. Grandad Davies attended school until the 6th grade. After leaving school he worked with the Native Police as well as on cattle stations. He enlisted in the army in WWI and served in Egypt with the 7th Light Horse and volunteered in France with the 41st Battalion. First World War Embarkation details: Service number: 3282. Rank: Private. Roll title: 41 Infantry Battalion 7 to 9 Reinforcements (February to June 1917).

Conflict: First World War, 1914 - 1918. Date of embarkation: 14 June 1917. Place of embarkation: Sydney. Ship embarked on: HMAT Hororata. Ship number: A20. My grandma’s memoirs state that he returned to Australia on the ship ‘Edinburgh Castle’. Grandad Davies was awarded a Military Medal for his service. My grandma recalls that he was one of the first people to enlist for WWII and that he went into the city in his civvies and returned in the A.I.F uniform, with a smile on his face a mile wide. Grandad Davies was on Garrison Duty stationed in Strathpine. He was a member of the Sandgate R.S.L and marched every ANZAC day, first in his local parade then travelling into Brisbane by train to march in the city parade. Grandad was able to lease land under the Soldiers Settlement. Grandad Davies did have to pay rent on the house that was preexisting on the property and did not receive a Soldiers Pension. My grandmas memoirs state that he was one of only two Aboriginals in Queensland to be granted land

leases and that it was a special lease through the Aboriginal and Islanders Protection Office. This lease had a clause: that it is never to be sold as long as there is a Davies descendant who would want somewhere to live. Our family members still live there, on the banks of the Pine River at Bald Hills also known as Deepwater Bend. Grandad was a very respected man who has been honoured with a park named after him and I am proud of the rich history from which I am descended.

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Private augustus davies honoured