ANZAC Commemoration

The Macarthur area has a new ANZAC display commemorating two local WW1 diggers.
The commemorations are focused on two local servicemen
who did not return after service in Gallipoli in 1915;
Camden farmer Hector Small and Camden tailor Milton Thornton.

Harrington Estates, commissioned the project as they feel strongly about respecting
the past and honouring the fact that any community developments owe a great deal to the freedoms
that the ANZACs secured. The commemorations include displays
and books available for all to view and read at Catherine Park House.


In 1914 the population of Camden was just over 1000 people.
The lives of many families were interlinked both by industry and often by blood, close relationships
were held dear and the very fabric of the society was based on building the community.

On August 9th, 1914, The Rev. J. G. Martin of the Methodist Church addressed the citizens of
Camden at a service in Macarthur Park:

“The call to arms has reached our shores, and
Australia has responded with one voice; and within a
few days her sons, and daughters too, will leave for
the scene of conflict, one to fight for the empire, the
other to minister to sick and wounded and dying.”

 

ww1 recruitment

 

From this close-knit population of just over 1000, 492 men
and women volunteered for active service. The World War I
Roll of Honour for the district lists 93 soldiers who died.

To Milton Thornton and Hector Small.
On behalf of our grateful nation, we honour these
ANZACs and commemorate their sacrifice.

 

Milton Frank Thornton

1895-1915

milton frank thornton

milton frank thornton2

Australia might have been far away when Britain declared war on Germany on August 4, 1914, but the call to arms was heard loud and clear.

Within weeks, a young tailor’s apprentice from Camden, Milton Frank Thornton, volunteered his service to his country, lining up to enlist with other eager young recruits on Tuesday September 1, 1914 at Kensington racecourse in Sydney’s east.

Birth: 29th March 1895
Camden, NSW, Australia
Death: 19th May 1915, (age 20)
Gallipoli, Turkey. Killed in Action
Cemetery: 4th Battalion Parade
Ground Cemetery, Gallipoli, Turkey
Memorial: Soldiers’ Memorial Macarthur Park, Camden

“A man of fine physique – he was a good athlete. As a long-distance cyclist he was well-known in the Camden district, and he proved himself an able exponent of boxing and wrestling. As a compulsory trainee, he was a first-class shot. He met his death while sniping in the trenches.”

Men of the Dardanelles, Sydney Morning Herald. 23rd July 1915

 

 

Hector Small

1895-1915

hector small

hector small

Upon news of the declaration of war, a young farmer from Camden, Hector Small, turned to his wife of only 3 months, Alice and simply said, “I think I ought to go.”

On August 26, 1914, just three weeks later, Hector signed up for the Australian Imperial Force at Rosebery Park racecourse, south of Sydney.

A natural horseman who had been a member of the local Light Horse Brigade, Hector was assigned the 1st Light Horse Regiment at Rosebery Park.

Birth: 9th June 1892
Theresa Park, NSW, Australia
Death: 4th July 1915, (age 22)
Cairo, Egypt
Unit: Lance Corporal, 1st Australian
Light Horse Regiment
Cemetery: Cairo War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt
Memorial: Soldiers’ Memorial Macarthur Park, Camden
St Paul’s Anglican Church, Cobbitty

“As I write now, I can see him in my mind’s eye, sitting at the side of my dug-out, in the dusk, waiting for the other fellows to assemble for our little prayer and scripture reading. He was a power for good in our midst, and [that] is great comfort to us now that he is gone.”

Colonel Chaplain Ernest Merrington, Presbyterian Clergy

 

Milton Thornton

1895

Born in Camden

1900

Attended Camden Public School

1910-1914

Apprentice to J Pinkerton,
Tailor, Camden
1914 4th August
Australia pledges support for Britain in war declaration

1914

1st September – Enlisted

20th October – Departed Sydneyon HMAT Euripides

1915

25th April – Part of a second and third wave oflandings at Anzac Cove, Gallipoli Peninsula

19th May – Killed in action, Gallipoli Peninsula

Hector Small

1892

Born in Theresa park

1898

School at Theresa

1906-1911

Farmer in Camden Area
Joined local Light Horse Brigade.
1914 4th August
Australia pledges support for Britain in war declaration

1914

29th April – Married Ms Alice Mildred Stafford of ‘Passchendaele’, Brownlow Hill, Camden

26th August – Amongst the first to enlist

20th October – Departed Sydney on HMAT Star of Victoria with 1st Australian Light Horse Regiment

1915

12th May – Landed at Anzac Cove

4th July – Died in Cairo, Egypt

Each year on April 25th we commemorate those who served and died
in honour of our country with an Anzac march held down Argyle Street,
Camden, just as enlistment marches were held there 100 years ago.
In the Camden district, as all across the nation, Lest We Forget.

October 19, 2017, 12:34 pm