Albert Edward BERTRAM

BERTRAM, Albert Edward

Service Numbers: 3129, S16663
Enlisted: 3 October 1916
Last Rank: Lieutenant
Last Unit: 50th Infantry Battalion
Born: Adelaide, SA, 6 November 1891
Home Town: Evandale, Norwood Payneham St Peters, South Australia
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Packer
Died: 13 August 1958, aged 66 years, cause of death not yet discovered, place of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: North Road Cemetery, Nailsworth, S.A.
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World War 1 Service

3 Oct 1916: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 3129, 50th Infantry Battalion
16 Dec 1916: Involvement Private, SN 3129, 50th Infantry Battalion
16 Dec 1916: Embarked Private, SN 3129, 50th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Berrima, Adelaide
11 Nov 1918: Involvement Lance Corporal, SN 3129, 50th Infantry Battalion

World War 2 Service

18 Mar 1941: Involvement Lieutenant, SN S16663
18 Mar 1941: Enlisted Keswick, SA
10 Mar 1945: Discharged

World War 1 Service

Date unknown: Wounded SN 3129, 50th Infantry Battalion

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Biography contributed by Saint Ignatius' College

Albert Edward Bertram Biography

By Henry Schultz - 2017

Albert Edward Bertram was born to Augusta Emily Bertram in Goodwood, Adelaide in 1889. By his mid-20’s, Albert was a packer and still living in Norwood with his mother and family. Albert was a member of the Church of England, and at the time of embarkation was described as having brown hair, blue eyes, and a medium complexion. Aged 26 and 10 months, he was 5ft 5.75inches and weighed 118lbs when he was deemed fit for active service on 7th October 1916. As a Private, Albert was about to join the war with other South Australians, an event that would change his life forever

As part of the 8th reinforcement in the 50th infantry battalion, Bertram embarked from Adelaide on the HMAT Berrima on 16th of December 1916. Bertram did not partake in training in Egypt, as that had occurred before he joined the army. He disembarked in Devonport, England on 16th of February 1917. Within days he and the battalion had marched to Hurdcott Camp, 120 miles from Devonport, on the 21st of February. From there he proceeded to Codford, another 11 miles on 6th of March 2017. After Reaching Codford, Bertram and the infantry made their way South East 50 miles to Southampton, and it was from there they moved into France.

The 50th Infantry Battalion fought many battles in France, however it was in Passchendaele that Albert became one of the 1,557 total wounded in the 50th infantry battalion. Passchendaele is renowned for being a key battle, as approximately 40% of Germany’s army was involved, 66% percent of Britain’s and all 5 of Australia’s divisions. As a reinforcement, Bertram suffered a severe gunshot wound to his right buttock, and was officially wounded in action on 19th of July 1917. This was Bertram’s first conflict, as he had only been an unused reinforcement before this.

Due to his injury, he was moved back to England where he rehabilitated for several months. He was admitted from 2nd Southern General Hospital in Bristol, and transferred to Dartford on 1st of August. On the 7th, he was sent back to Hurdcott to report for duty to his battalion, and re-joined his unit in the field on the 13th.

After re-joining his unit, Bertram fell ill with an undiagnosed disease, however this was most likely influenza due to the cold wet conditions at the time in his location, and it was mentioned to have been present in the battalion. Bertram was sent to hospital on account of his sickness. He was not there for long however, as he was sent to hospital on the 6th of September 1918, and returned on the 17th of the same month.

Throughout the next few months, Bertram was involved in several battles with his battalion. The battles his battalion faced between 1917 and 1919 were: Battle of the Somme, Villers Bretonneux, Bullecourt, Messines, Battle of Hamel, Battle of Amiens, Ypres Albert, Menin Road, Hindenburg Line, Polygon Wood, Epehy, Passchendaele and France & Flanders.

After these battles, and several months after the war was over, Albert Edward Bertram was promoted to Lance Corporal, his first and only promotion as a soldier. A lance Corporal is a rank of non-commissioned officer in the British army, above private and below corporal, and the lowest non-commissioned officer rank in the Australian Army. He was promoted on the 1st of May 1919.

Albert Edward Bertram returned home from England back to Australia on the Ajana ship. He arrived back in Adelaide on 19th August 1919, aged. Bertram died on the 13th of August 1958, aged 69 and is currently buried at North Road Church Cemetery, Adelaide.

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