Jack Leslie DUELL

DUELL, Jack Leslie

Service Number: 2306
Enlisted: 24 May 1916, Adelaide, South Australia
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 50th Infantry Battalion
Born: Bordertown, South Australia, 30 March 1891
Home Town: Bordertown, Tatiara, South Australia
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Trainer
Died: Penrith, NSW, 17 August 1966, aged 75 years, cause of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
Memorials: Bordertown District of Tatiara WW1 Roll of Honor
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World War 1 Service

24 May 1916: Enlisted AIF WW1, Adelaide, South Australia
12 Aug 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, 2306, 50th Infantry Battalion, --- :embarkation_roll: roll_number: '19' embarkation_place: Adelaide embarkation_ship: HMAT Ballarat embarkation_ship_number: A70 public_note: ''
12 Aug 1916: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, 2306, 50th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Ballarat, Adelaide
28 Oct 1918: Discharged AIF WW1
Date unknown: Wounded 2306, 50th Infantry Battalion

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Biography contributed by Adelaide Botanic High School

Private Jack Leslie Duell was born in the town of Bordertown, South Australia on 30th of March 1891. His mother, Elizabeth Duell, was listed as his next of kin on his enlistment form, and it is presumed that he lived with his mother during his time at Bordertown. He was a Trainer by occupation, and there is little other information about his early life.

On Jack's enlistment forms, when asked if he was ever rejected from his enlistment application due to being unfit for His Majesty's service, Jack wrote, 'Yes just 8 months ago' with no explanation of what the reason was.

With no previous military service on his record, Jack Duell enlisted on the 24th of May 1916 as an A.I.F private in Adelaide, aged 25 years and 1 month. Even though this was his true age, he put his age as 26 years and 3 months on his enlistment form. He embarked from Adelaide on the 12th August, 1916, aboard the HMAT A70 Ballarat. Jack's service number was 2306, and he was appointed to the 50th Australian Infantry battalion in which he would later fight in 'The battle of the Somme.'

The records do not show where the HMAT A70 Ballarat travelled to from Adelaide. On the 30th September 1916 Duell was admitted to hospital with VD and returned to his unit on 24th November 1916.

A bit of background information about the 50th A.I.F battalion:

The 50th battalion was raised in Egypt as part of the 'doubling' of the AIF. Around half of the battalion's were veterans from the 10th Battalion, and the other half, fresh reinforcements from Australia. The 50th was predominantly composed of men from South Australia. Since Jack Duell only enlisted after the 10th Battalion was formed, and only fought in the 50th battalion, he was part of the fresh reinforcements from South Australia. The majority of the 50th aboard the HMAT Ballarat were reinforcements (1602/1752.)

After arriving in France on 11 June 1916, the 50th fought in its first major battle at Mouquet Farm between 13 and 15 August and suffered heavily. It took part in another assault launched there on 3 September which it is likely that Duell participated in. The battalion saw out the rest of the year alternating between front-line duty, and training and labouring behind the line. T

Jack Duell was wounded twice, the first 26th September 1917 and 10th April 1918. He spent time in hospital and after his second wound he was invalided.  By the 28th of October 1918, Jack was discharged from the A.I.F and therefore allowed to live the rest of his life peacefully. Jack returned to Australia and very little is known about his life after the war, apart from his death date. He passed away on August 17, 1966 in Penrith NSW.