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Tracing Your Roots To Gallipoli

Remembering some of the Bolton men who lost their lives in the Gallipoli Campaign of 1915

Jack Blackburn

Jack Blackburn

Bolton Chronicle

EDEN'S "BOY" WOUNDED

Councillor George E. Blackburn, who resides in Beckett Street, has received information from the high Commissioner of Australia, through Mr. Reg. O. Bradbury, Assistant-Sollicitor to the Bolton Corporation, that his nephew, Private Jack Blackburn, of the 7th Battalion Australian Imperial Force, has been reported wounded and missing, but no date is mentioned.

Private Blackburn was brought up in Eden's Orphanage, and went out farming to New Zealand about three years ago, and when war broke out he enlisted.

Councillor Blackburn has received no news from his nephew since he joined, but had heard from a friend that he had joined the Army, and on Mr Bradbury making enquiries it was ascertained that he had been wounded aqnd was missing.

AIF Witness statements:

Pte T E Foley 1 September 1917

On the 25th April 1915 I was with Pte Blackburn just about Johnsons Jolly at Gallipoli at dusk in the evening. The pltn that we were with had to retire a little. As we retired out of the little trench we had made, Pte Blackburn was hit and fell. I did not see him after this but I was told by one of our party that Pte Blackburn was shot through the head. I cannot remember the man who told me this. By the way that Pte Blackburn fell and lay I was sure that he was shot dead.

L/Sgt C P Stephen 12 January 1916

Witness says Blackburn was in his section. They were both at the landing on 25.4.15. The last witness saw of Blackburn was on the Monday afternoon about 4.30 during an advance. Soon afterwards they had to retire under very heavy fire and lost a number of men.

Jack was the son of William Blackburn b.1863 and Fanny Rachel Blackburn née Ince b.1866.

He had at least two brothers, Joseph b.1887 and Thomas Carr Blackburn b.1890 (died the same year).

William Blackburn probably died in 1892. Fanny Rachel Blackburn died in 1895.

Jack first appeared on the 1901 Census as an inmate of Eden's Orphanage, Astley Bridge, Bolton along with his brother Joseph.

By 1911 he was living at Pendlebury's Farm, Smithills, Bolton with his employer James Taylor, his wife and their son. Jack was working on the farm as a labourer.

At some point between 1911 and 1914 he emigrated to Australia where he worked as a labourer.

His medical examination on enlistment recorded him as being 5' 6 3/8" tall and weighing 9 st with a dark complexion, Blue eyes and dark brown hair. He also had a scar on his lower lip.

He left Melbourne, Australia on board HMAT Hororata on 19 October 1914.

His brother Joseph, who was given as next of kin on Jack's Army records, lived for a while at Emmanuel College, Saskatchewan, Canada but by 1917 was back in England, living in Ramsgate, Kent.

 

Name Blackburn, Jack
Rank Private
Number 597
Unit 7th Bn
Australian Imperial Force
Born Horwich/Rivington, Lancashire 1892
Enlisted Geelong, Victoria
Australia
9 September 1914
Died Gallipoli, Turkey
25 April 1915
Age 23
Grave or Memorial Lone Pine Memorial, Gallipoli, Turkey
CWGC DETAILS
Australian Imperial Force