Charles Arthur EACOTT

Poppy

EACOTT, Charles Arthur

Service Number: 6987
Enlisted: 20 October 1916
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 7th Infantry Battalion
Born: Daylesford, Victoria, July 1893
Home Town: Longwarry, Baw Baw, Victoria
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Farmer
Died: Killed in action, Polygon Wood, Ypres, Belgium, 20 September 1917
Cemetery: Birr Cross Roads Cemetery
Joint graves, Plot I, Row D Graves 19 and 20 (with Private 6509 Henry Russell Huntsman).
Memorials: Australian War Memorial, Roll of Honour, Menin Gate Memorial (Commonwealth Memorial to the Missing of the Ypres Salient)
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World War 1 Service

20 Oct 1916: Enlisted AIF WW1
23 Nov 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 6987, 7th Infantry Battalion, Third Ypres
23 Nov 1916: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 6987, 7th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Hororata, Melbourne

Help us honour Charles Arthur Eacott's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography

The final resting place of Pte Charles EACOTT  was previously under a headstone bearing the inscriptions “A Soldier of the Great War” in the Birr Cross Roads Cemetery, Belgium. It was identified (along with others) by researchers Andrew Pittaway and Dennis Frank of the volunteer group Fallen Diggers.

 

Brother: 20240 Gunner Joseph Henry EACOTT, 8th Field Artillery Brigade, returned to Australia, 11 May 1919;

Cousin: 2168 Corporal Francis Thomas EACOTT, 1st Bn, Killed in action, 4 January 1917.

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Biography contributed by Julianne Ryan

Born July 1893 in Daylesford, Victoria

Father William James Eacott
          (b. 30/07/1855 Galmorgan, Tasmania - d. 17/07/1911); and
Mother Mrs Mary Ellen Eacott (nee Towers)
           (b. 1866 Carlton, VIC - d.  19/03/1932 Longwarry, VIC)
(both buried in Drouin West Cemetery, Longwarry, VIC)

Charles lived with his parents at Sand Road, Longwarry, Victoria on enlisting.

Siblings:
Clara Blanch Maud (Eacott) Tibbits   b. 1885 Glenlyon, VIC - d.08/06/1943 Perth, WA
    m.  1905 - John Markham Tibbits
    lived at 30 McLaron Street, Boulder City, Western Australia
Anne Eacott   b. 1886 Glenlyon, VIC - d. 1887 in Daylesford, VIC
William Eacott  b. 1889 in Glenlyon, VIC - d. 30/07/1937
                      buried in Drouin West Cemetery
Joseph Henry Eacott  b. 1891 Daylesford, VIC - 1963 Warragul, VIC
Percy Edward Eacott  b. 1895 in Longwarry, VIC - d. 1948 in Bunyip, VIC
Bridget Eacott  b.1900 in Longwarry, VIC - d. 26 Oct 1978 at Longwarry, VIC

Next-of-kin in service:
Brother:
20240 Gunner Joseph Henry EACOTT
, 8th Field Artillery Brigade
           b.  April 1891 Daylesford, Victoria
           28/12/1915   enlisted in Melbourne, VIC
           20/05/1916   embarked Port of Melbourne, VIC onboard HMAT A7 Medic
                              as a Gunner with 8th Field Artillery Brigade, Brigade Ammunition Column
           11/05/1919   returned to Australia onboard HT Zealandia, ex England
           28/06/1919   disembarked into Australia
           04/09/1919   discharged from service
           1923             MARRIED: Elizabeth (Hanna) Eacott
           1963             Joseph passed away in Warrgul, Victoria

Cousins:
2168  Corporal Francis Thomas EACOTT
, 1st Battalion
          15/10/1915  enlisted in Melbourne, VIC
          09/03/1916  embarked Port of Melbourne, VIC onboard HMAT A13 Katuna
                             as a Private with with 1st Battalion
         04/01/1917   Killed in action - Jeancourt, France
         No known grave
         His name is commemorated on:
                           - Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France
                           - Panel 28 at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, ACT

22511 Driver Samuel Henry Eacott - 8th Field Artillery Brigade
          (brother to Francis above)
          11/01/1916  enlisted in Melbourne, VIC
          20/05/1916  embarked Port of Melbourne, VIC onboard HMAT A7 Medic
                             as a Driver with 23rd Howitzer Brigade, 1st reinforcements
          last rank: Driver with 8th Field Artillery Brigade
          11/05/1919  returned to Australia onboard HT Borda
          27/06/1919  disembarked into Australia
          11/08/1919  discharged from service         
          1929            MARRIED Leila Victoria Eacott (nee Boulton)
          1974            Samuel passed away in Warragul, Victoria

Charles was described on enlisting as 23 years 3 months of age; single; fresh complexion;
grey eyes; brown hair; Church of England

20/10/1916     enlisted at Warragul, Victoria

14/11/1916     appointed to 23rd reinforcements, 7th Infantry Battalion, Royal Park Camp

23/11/1916     embarked Port of Melbourne, VIC onboard HMAT A20 Hororata
                     as a Private with 7th Battalion, 23rd Reinforcement
29/01/1917     disembarked into Plymouth, England

22/02/1917     sick to hospital, England

12/03/1917     marched into 2nd Training Battalion

14/05/1917     proceeded overseas to France, ex Folkestone

28/05/1917     taken on srength 7th Battalion in France

20/09/1917      hit by a shell and knocked unconscious - killed in action
                       at Black Watch Corner, Polygon Wood, Belgium

Buried in:         the side of the trench of where he was killed
                       (noted by his comrades in his battalion)
                       Buried alongside Private 1945 William Gilbert Grace and
                                                Private 6509 Henry Russell Huntsman - all killed together.

23/01//1918     stated by Private 6479 Edward Henry Coningsby - 7th Battalion - London
                      "re 6509 Pte H R Huntsman reported killed in action. I am pleased that I
                       can give you the particulars you require of his death as I happened to be
                       near by when it happened. It was on Sept. 20th about mid-day we had
                       reached our final objective and consolidated our position. Pte Huntsman
                       was on post, near him was Lieutenant Attwood, Pte Grace and Pte Eacott.
                       A shell burst and killed the four of them and wounded three others.
                       His personal belongings were taken from his pockets and handed into
                       battalion office from there they would be forwarded to his mother.
                       Lieutenant Attwood's body was taken away by stretcher bearers and
                       Pte Huntsman, Grace and Eacott were buried side by side near where
                       they fell.  It was just near Polygon Wood.
                       We erected three little wooden crosses and attached the identity disc
                       which is used for that purpose, so you will see they were buried on the
                       field. 
                       I came over with the same reinforcements as Pte Huntsman, was in camp
                       in England with him and we also came over to France on the same draft
                       and joined the battalion the same time.
                       I always found him a good comrade.  He was very popular with all the
                       boys in the platoon, we wer very sorry to lose him.
                       If it is his mother who is enquiring about him, you may offer her my
                       sincerest sympathy.  I used to work near her shop in Praran and knew her
                       but she wound not know me."


Sadly - Pte 6479 E H Coningsby was killed in action 7 months to the day of this statement
                         on 23/08/1918 at St Martins Wood
                         buried in:  Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres, France
                                         Plot III, Row G, Grave No. 14
 

Nov 2014         Confirmed by:   Researchers
                       Andrew Pittaway, of Fremantle and Dennis Frank, of Melbourne
                       they wrote to Brigadier Appleton outlining their case

                       Brigadier Appleton said the researchers' case was confirmed by research by
                       the Office of Australian War Graves and the Commonwealth War Graves
                       Commission. 
                       He said "Mr Pittaway was 'an extraordinary man'. As a result of his work,
                                    we've been able to identify the graves of two Australians, by name,
                                    and previously they'd been known only to God.

Keith Huntsman, 92, of Blackburn, nephew of Private Huntsman, thanked Mr Pittaway and Mr Frank for tracking down his uncle Harry. "It's a very fine service to the community," he said. "It's always been unfinished business in that Harry's grave has never been found."

Private Eacott's great-niece Sandra Johnston, of the Gold Coast, QLD, said she is happy there will be a grave for future generations to visit, and relatives had commented on "what fantastic work" the researchers had done. She wants to attend the ceremony in Belgium.

20/9/2015        A rededication service was held at the Birr Cross Roads Cemetery, Belgium.

                       later his body was exhumed and reburied in:
                                   Birr Cross Roads Cemetery, Ypres, Belgium
                                   Joint grave Plot I, Row D, Graves 19-20
                                   (with Private 6509 Henry Russell Huntsman)

Pte 1945 William Gilbert Grace is buried alongside the joint grave at Plot I, Row D, Grave 18.

 
His name is commemorated on:-
                 - Panel 7 at The Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium; and
                 - Panel 49 at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, ACT

Medals:             British War medal (53532), Victory medal (52732)
                        Memorial Plaque and Scroll (332052)

Submitted by Julianne T Ryan.  16/01/2017.  Lest we forget.

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