Builth Hamilton (Builow) CHARLES

Badge Number: 15992

CHARLES, Builth Hamilton

Service Numbers: 937, 38613
Enlisted: Not yet discovered
Last Rank: Gunner
Last Unit: Field Artillery Brigades
Born: Morwell, Victoria, June 1888
Home Town: Murrumbeena, Glen Eira, Victoria
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Clerk
Died: Gun Shot Wound, Egypt, 18 May 1915
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
Memorials: Campbelltown Methodist Church WW1 Honour Roll, Campbelltown WW1 Memorial
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World War 1 Service

21 Oct 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Sergeant, SN 937, 5th Infantry Battalion, From Melbourne, Victoria
26 Nov 1917: Involvement Gunner, SN 38613, Field Artillery Brigades
26 Nov 1917: Embarked Gunner, SN 38613, Field Artillery Brigades, SS Indarra, Melbourne
11 Nov 1918: Involvement Gunner, SN 38613
11 Nov 1918: Involvement Gunner, SN 38613

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Our soldier from World War I is Charles Builth Hamilton.  He was born in June 1888, in Morwell, Gippsland, to James Alfred Hamilton and Elizabeth Jane Samuel. Hamilton was reasonably tall, 6 foot 1, however relatively skinny. He would have been a small in men’s shirts. He had a clear complexion, grey eyes and brown hair. Growing up Hamilton moved to several different addresses.

Although Hamilton’s father, James Alfred was his next of kin, Charles elected to give his mother, Elizabeth Samuel all of his property and possessions if he died during the war.

Hamilton worked as a clerk at the Federal Land Tax Department during his early adulthood.

Hamilton joined the cadets at Caulfield. He enlisted to join the Army as a sergeant at the age of 19 on the 17th of August 1914. Hamilton’s middle name was incorrectly spelt on the enlistment form. It wrote, Builow instead of Builth. His service number was 937. He was made a member of the 5th Infantry Battalion.

Hamilton travelled to Melbourne on the 21st of October 1914 where he embarked on the same day aboard the HMAT A3 Orvieto which was initially travelling to Europe, however had to change course for Egypt as troops were needed in Gallipoli. The 5th infantry battalion were part of the 2nd Brigade. They arrived in Egypt on the 2nd of December and started their training camp. The 2nd Brigade took part in the ANZAC landing in Gallipoli on 24th April 1915. Four days later, Hamilton was transferred to fight at the Dardanelles in Turkey where he was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant.

On the 12th of May, Hamilton was shot and wounded in the right thigh and left shoulder while in battle. Hamilton was rushed back to No. 19 British General Hospital (Deaconesses Hospital) in Alexandria, Egypt. Sadly, he died six days later at 12.30am on the 18th of May, 1915 aged 20. Hamilton’s body was buried at the Chatby Military and War Memorial Cemetery, Alexandria, Egypt on the 19th of May, 1915.

At the scene of Hamilton’s death, he possessed 1 leather wallet, letters, 2 whistles, 9 buttons, 1 pipe, 1 pocket knife, 1 compass, 1 New Testament, 1 pair of nail scissors and 1 war atlas.

Hamilton’s mother, Elizabeth Samuel, found coming to terms with the death of her beloved son terribly difficult. On the 27th December, 1915, Trevor Hamilton, Charles’ brother, wrote a letter to Charles Builth’s, Major (Darvall), hoping that he could help with the insurance claim. In the letter, Trevor expressed his parent’s frustration and sadness as the Insurance Society were not cooperating with the insurance claim. Trevor writes, “The A.M.P. Insurance Society is making things very unpleasant for my parents in substantiating their claim to insurance money as next of kin of the late 2nd. Lieut. C.B. Hamilton, 5th. Battn., A.I.F.    We have all the necessary documents in support of our claim, so it is only a matter of time before it should be settled—though some seven months have elapsed since the official notification by the Defence Dept.” Elizabeth Samuel spent days lying in bed and suffered from severe depression. She was not able to live under the circumstances she was under and died a few years after her son Charles.

ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Corps. ANZAC soldiers are some of the highest respected men and women in both Australia and New Zealand. The ANZAC spirit, commonly known as the ANZAC legend, states that all ANZACs who fought in Gallipoli in 1915 were courageous, disciplined, showed mate ship, initiative and love.

Charles Hamilton reflected the ANZAC spirit by showing courage and love. He showed courage at the Dardanelles as he was a Second Lieutenant which meant he would have had to take charge and lead out the front and on the battlefield.

He showed love to his mother as he gave her all his possessions in his will. This was unusual as most people put their fathers down in their will.