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Selected Families and Individuals



The name Tinder - after his G. Grandmother, Jane Teinder?
Mirboo North: 160km SE Melbourne
Mirboo is an aboriginal word for kidney. Aborigines, who survived the tribal fighting of an earlier Gippsland period, would remove the kidney-fat from a victim and thus acquire the source of his courage, strength and wisdom. The area around Mirboo North was opened up for settlement in the 1880s and the early settlers would have needed plenty of courage and strength to overcome the hardships of this virgin bushland where trees 300 feet tall, with a diameter of 8-10 feet were extraordinary, but not exceptional. New arrivals stood dwarfed in a theatre of massive natural barriers which had to be removed by the axe.
The removal of 100 or more trees for a permanent home site was not unusual. The undergrowth was thick with tree ferns - some of them towering to a height of 40 feet. Other troublesome obstacles were wiregrass & the sword grass. Where the wiregrass abounded, men would have to protect the handles of their axe with pieces of tin nailed on at the bottom, otherwise the constant rasping of the grass would sever the handle near the axe head.
Today this small town is surrounded by rich dairying lands.

Photo, Football team 1910
Book - "On The Ridge" page, 95


Age: 21years 11months
Height: 5feet 3 3/4inches
Weight: 9stone 3lbs
Chest Meas. 35 1/2inches
Complexion: Medium
Eyes: D.Grey
Hair: D.Brown
Religion: Pres
Distinctive Marks: vacc 4 infancy

Service No: 2822
Rank: Gunner
Unit: 1st. Div.
Embarked from Australia 21st Sep. 1914
Served in Egypt, England, France
Medals Issued: 1914/1915 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal
Discharged: 21st Feb 1919

Service History as written by Mr Bruce Lees. (W.W.1. AIF expert, Mackay)

James was in the Australian Artillery. He was a Gunner. He joined up very early in the war - 28th Aug 1914. He was obviously very patriotic and keen to do his bit. He served in the First Division Field Artillery - first in the D.A.C. (Divisional Ammunition Column) which was like a stores/supply unit to service the gunners. He appears to have been in this role from 1914 to 1918 when he transferred to the Medium Trench Mortar Battery (M.T.M.Bty). He went to France with this Unit in 1917 and saw front-line service late in the war. (The Trench Mortars were the fore-runners of the modern mortar gun used today). He would have worn a rectangular colour patch - red over blue. (The rank of Gunner in the artillery is like private in the infantry.)

Obviously, after spending 4 years or so in a non-combatant type role (stores), he was keen to get a crack at the fighting - hence his transfer to a fighting unit. No doubt the loss of his brother would have weighed heavily on his mind. What does one do - stay in a safe job or risk another family member being killed. No doubt he considered his parents' feelings with one son already lost. Looks like late in the war he decided he wanted to take a more dangerous role. Seems as though in 1916 - he may have spent a short time with the Field Ambulance in England. Interesting to note James was hospitalised in 1916 - almost sure it would also be influenza - a lot of Australians succumbed to the cold climate.

His movements in the war were - Australia to Egypt - Egypt to England - England to France - France to England - England to Australia. He was returned to Australia just before the war ended on "Special 1914 Leave". This was granted to soldiers who joined in 1914 and who had at this time of the war served a full 5 years. Gov. considered they had done enough by this stage and returned them home. James would have arrived in France about 3 weeks after Sam had been killed. He was in France for a year so he would no doubt have visited his brother's grave in Armentieres.

Post Card - Sent to Mother (1914)
Dear Mother,
I sent you a P.C. the other but I don't know if you will receive it, as they are very strict as to what is on them. Hoping you are well, as I am just now. I got vaccinated today, whether I liked it or not.

I remember as a child when Grandad used to come visit on occasions when we were living in Albury. My sister & I enjoyed these visit as we used to annoy him for lollies. (poor man)


Land Selection - 1873.
Dec 11 1873 - Application for License.
Harry Bellingham of Barlows Lagoon declare that on the 25th Oct 1873 at 4pm. o'clock I placed conspicuous post or cairns of stones with notices thereon at the corners of the allotment for which I hereby make application;
Allotment - South of Telegraph Road between Avenel & L'Wood & 10 ch north of Borrows selection.
May 29th 1877 - Application for Lease or Crown Grant.
List of Improvements; Fencing 181p 5s
Cultivation 35p
Buildings 80p
Water Storage 296p 5s
Other 81p
2nd year on land - Ploughed & cultivated 3 acres
3rd year on land - Ploughed & cultivated 32 acres at a cost of 1p per acre of wheat, total cost 32p.
Buildings: House with 2 rooms, not quite complete
Dimensions 28 x 14 Sawn timber, bark roof cost 60p.
Hut 18 x 10 Sawn slabs & bark roof cost 20p.
Water Storage: Well
Other Improvements: 3 acres thoroughly grubbed for orchard & planted with various kinds of fruit trees. cost 12p.
Scrubbing & clearing 32 acres. c 15/- cost 24p
Ringing trees on 300 acres. c 3/- cost 45p.
Aug 13th 1877 - Certificate of Improvements.
This land was held under License by Harry since 1st May 1874.
Sep 17th 1877 - Application for Lease
Paid license fee fully
Fencing - enclosed within 3 years
Cultivation - yes
Residence - yes
Expenditure £377 5shillings.
Mar 4th 1878 - Letter, applying for Crown Grant.
Mar 18th 1878 - Application for Crown Grant.
Improvements £377
Cultivation 35 acres
Residence yes
No other holdings
Reason for Grant - for better Security.
May 2nd 1878 - Letter from Surveyor General - declining to allow Harry to convert his leasehold into a freehold.
May 23rd 1878 - Letter to Minister of Lands asking to reconsider the decision re - freehold. (mention of Grandmother, Sarah Bellingham, selecting next to us, residing in the area for 11 years & the planting of 20 acres of crop this year.)
Jun 12th 1878 - Grant signed
Aug 6th 1878 - Purchased land to the extent of 320 acres in the Parish of Monea. Allotment 47.
Previously Paid. £120
Balance due. £192
Certificate & Grant £1 10shillings
Assurance fund 13shillings 4pence
Balance of fees paid in Melbourne.

Vic. P.O.Directory:
1884 - 1885
Bellingham H. Farmer. Longwood
1888 - 1892
Bellingham Henry & Samuel. Selectors. Locksley
1893 - 1894
Bellingham Henry. Selector. Locksley
1897 - 1898
Bellingham Henry & Sam. Graziers. Locksley

Around the turn of the century, Harry moved to the Dumbalk area.

Death Notice:
BELLINGHAM - On the 16th, at his residence, 13 Wheatland-road, Malvern, Harry, dearly beloved husband of Jane Bellingham (formerly of Mirboo North), and loving father of Mary (Mrs Butterworth), Harry, Barbara (Mrs Mess), Sarah (Mrs Smith), Margaret, Caroline, Samuel (deceased), James, Charlotte (Mrs Carruthers) and Catherine, aged 74 years.

Jane LOW

Bacchus Marsh Express: Marriage Notice.
Married at "Burnside" by the Rev Hugh Macfarlane. (Presbyterian) At the residence of the bride's parents, Harry Bellingham, farmer, Monea, eldest son of Samuel Bellingham, to Jane Low 2nd eldest daughter of Thomas Low, farmer, Bacchus Marsh.


The name Way - after her Grandmother, Mary Reikie Way.

Sarah Aynsley BELLINGHAM

Sarah also had the middle name Aynsley, after her Aunt.

Margaret Douglas BELLINGHAM

The name Douglas - possibly after friends at Avenel. Douglas' were also on the land there.


Letter. (written to Bob Bellingham)
23-8-82 Parkview
81 Burke Road
E. Malvern
Dear Bob & Betty,
I received your letter the other week. I'm also sorry it wasn't a boy, now they have 4 daughters, the next ones may be 3 boys. Like Dorothy (Canberra) she had 4 sons then 3 daughters. It is nice to have a mixed family. They should have 2 sons now to keep the name going. Has Jim Bellingham (Dumbalk) got a son, I know he has a daughter, a little devil she was, but I can't remember any other children. How is Alex Crombie & Florrie, we don't hear anything of them. Ben has just been in, says Charlotte is about the same. When you were down you were asking me about Mums family, there were 8 girls & 3 boys. I was telling Isobel the last time I was down there I wished I had a photo of my Uncle Jim I could send Bob & she said I have one you can have. It is the beautiful uniform, never see them like that today, Isobels son is a commercial photographer. Some of those pictures you see in magazines are done by him, but they are not allowed to put their name on it.
Have just had Ben in, he will post this for me tomorrow. Ben Roma & others were up at Rochester then on to Echuca for the wedding reception. Ben & Roma stayed there the night & came back through Maryborough & went to the cemetery there to find a grave. Henry Bellingham your great great grandfather. He got a name of one of the caretakers & will write, he was buried there about 200 years ago, had a hotel there. Ben is getting a family tree of the Bellingham family, his wife was buried at Aveniel I think I have spelt that wrong. Well Bob & Betty, I think I will stop now as I have rheumatics in the hands & the neck.
Hope you are both well.
Auntie Carrie.
Just had a letter from Dorothy, says country is as brown as brown paper. Hope you have plenty of green grass.

Carrie owned property near Malvern station. She was a dressmaker & red haired (dark red) - she used to go to Toorak & work for the Nicholas' family (Aspros) - she used to bring all the gossip about them to Bacchus Marsh when Phillippa Nelson was a child.

Samuel Mercer BELLINGHAM

The name Mercer - possibly a mis-spelling of Manser (Samuel's G. Grandmother)
Age: 26years
Height: 5feet 4 1/2inches
Weight: 9stone 10lbs
Chest Meas: 35 inches
Complexion: Fair
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Light Brown
Religion: Pres.
Distinctive Marks: 1 vacc Left

Service History as written by Mr Bruce Lees (W.W.1. A.I.F. expert, Mackay)

Sam was a front-line infantryman. He served with the 38th Battalion. He was a private and his number was 1104. The 38th Battalion consisted of all Victorians - it was formed in Victoria in 1916. The 38th was part of the 10th Brigade of the 3rd Aust. Division (5 Aust. Divisions in total). They wore a purple over red oval patch on their shoulders.

The Battalion was commanded by Colonel C.H.Davis, a barrister of Bendigo. A history of the Battalion was written after the war. It is titled "The Thirty-Eighth Battalion" by E.Fairey, printed in Bendigo in 1920.

Sam enlisted in Australia on 1st March 1916. He left Melbourne on 20th June 1916 aboard Her Majesty's Troopship "Runic". He went straight to England (Plymouth). He contracted influenza - was a plague in England at the time - he'd only been in England 9 days before being admitted to hospital. He was lucky to survive his bout with the 'flu as many Australians died. (I've been to a village in Whiltshire, where there was an Aust. hospital - about 300 Aust's buried in the churchyard there).

On his discharge from hospital he rejoined his battalion and was sent to France in Nov 1916. They were stationed there and did not take part in any active fighting until Feb 27th. This was the Battalions' first battle and unfortunately Sam Bellingham was killed in it.

Samuel is buried at Cite Bonjean Military Cemetery, Armentieres.

Samuel is listed on the Locksley School (No: 2648) Honour Roll as a former pupil who served in World War 1.

Postcard - sent to his Mother.
In the possession of Ben Carruthers.
Feb 24th. 17
Dear Mother,
Just a card from France to let you know that I am still alive and in the best of health. Your loving son.

Information from Australian Red Cross Society, Wounded & Missing Enquiry Bureau. (1DRI/0428)
M. Feb. 27, 1917
I do not know how he was killed but I have seen his grave at Erquinghein near Armentiares. He has had a cross erected by the C. of E. Padre. His initials are S.M. He came out with me on June 20th last year. His number is near mine. He was killed in the raid on February 27th in the Houplines. He was in D. Coy.
Reference:- Sgt. Davis, J. C. 1149
A. I. F. 38.D.
L. Gun School
Etaples 9.6.17
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
12 June. 1917
38th Australians Bellingham, S.M. 1104
M. Feb. 27, 1917
He was in D. Co., XIV. Pltn. His grave was pointed out to me in February in the Bon Jean Military Cemetery just outside Armentieres. His name is on a wooden cross.
Informant: Pt. E. M. Jones 1212
38th Batt., D. Co., XIV. Pltn.
Australian Camp, Rouelles.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
10th June, 1917
38th Australians Bellingham, S.M. 1104
M. 27.2.17
He was in D. Co., and was blown to pieces by a shell while returning from a raid at Armentieres. He was right behind our 3rd line when he was killed. I have seen his grave in a cemetery at Armentieres. His number and initials are correct.
Informant: Pte. S.P.Maslen, 1236
38th Australians, D. Co.,
M. S. Grantully Castle.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
38th A. I. F., Bellingham, S. M. 1104
M. February 27th 1917
"I saw a man called Bellingham (38.B?) after he was killed, about February 27th at Armentieres. We were both out on a raid together and after it was over, he and Cpl. Patterson, (Lewis Gun Section) were carrying back a wounded man behind the lines, when a shell came over, and killed them both at Tissage Dump (?) I happened to be passing afterwards, and seeing them lying there, I was inquisitive, and looking at their identification cards, I saw who they were. I have seen their graves at Bon Jean Cemetery near Erquingham. There is a cross put up."
Eye Witness: Yes
Description: Informant could give no description.
Informant:- Pte. Wm. Farrell, 56,
38th A.I.F., Bandsman, S.B.. H.Q.Dets.,
3rd Southern General Hospital,
Cowley Section, Oxford.
Home address:- Mucklesford Post Office,
Castlemain, Victoria.
Hilda M. Pickard-Cambridge.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
38th Australian Imperial Force. Bellingham, Pte. S.M. 1104
M. February 27/17
"I knew" Sam" Bellingham. He came from South Gipsland. He was killed in a raid on Feb. 27th. I did not see him killed, but his body was buried in the cemetery at Armentieres, and I myself have seen his grave."
Eye Witness - Of grave, not of death.
Informant:- Pte. A. ?. Bradshaw, 1965,
D. Coy. 38th Aus, Imp Force
1st Eastern General Hospital
Home address:- not given
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
A.I.F. 38 Bellingham, S.M. 1104
M. Feb. 27th. 1917
This man was reported missing but he was killed and I have seen his grave, in the Armentieres British Cemetery. His people know this. I come from the same town as he did and we enlisted the same day.
Informant: Cpl. E.W.Williams. 1325.
No. 13 General
BOULOGNE. 8.6.17
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
38th A.I.F. Bellingham Pte. S.M. 1104
M. Feb. 27th 1917
Bellingham was killed on a raid at Rue de Bois. He got as far as the German trench and then he came back. He sat down on the ground with his head in his hands. He said he was all right, but he died very soon afterwards. We thought he was shot through the heart. He was buried in a good grave at Armentieres. I have seen it. There are flowers planted on it.
Eye Witness: Yes
Informant: Pte. B.J. Layland 1230,
38th A.I.F.
War Hospt., Duston,
April 27th 1917
G. MacKinnell.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
A.I.F. 38 Bellingham, S.M. 1104
M. Feby 27th, 1917
I do not know how he was killed, but I have seen his grave in Armentieres cemetery. I only knew it was him because all the boys lost on the raid of the night of Feby 26th, were buried together, and his name was on a cross. I also knew he was missing after the raid.
Reference: Ellis, W. 1164 38. D. LGS
Reinf. Camp.
Estaples. 18.5.17. NC.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
A.I.F. 38 Bellingham, S.M. 1104
M. Feb. 27th 1917
I have seen this man's grave with his name on it in a graveyard called something like Bonegine in Armentieres. He was in my platoon so I knew him well, and it is perfectly true he was reported missing at first.
Informant: Sergt. Mills. 1241.
No. 13 General Hospital.
BOULOGNE. 27.4.17
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
A.I.F. 38th Battn. Bellingham S.M. 1104
"Killed in action 27/2/17"
Buried in the Honour Cemetery Armentieres in Grave 238 Section 111. Block 111. Row F. German list of graves in Cemetery - See letter from Capt. Mills 28/7/19.
London 3/10/19
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
38th A.I.F. Bellingham Pte. S.M. 1104
M. Feb. 27th 1917
"I saw Bellingham's grave about a month ago in the cemetery at Armentieres."
Eye Witness: Yes
Informant: - Pte. W. Ellis, 1164
38th A.I.F.
1st Southern General Hosp:
Home address:- 2, Montague Place,
South Melbourne.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
A.I.F. 38th Btn Bellingham S.M. 1104
"M. 27-2-17"
Killed in Action 27-2-17 - previously reported Missing - Buried Cite Bonjean, Armentieres
Cert. by A.I.F. Headquarters 29-6-17.