Frederick John JENKINS MM, MC, MID, MC*

JENKINS, Frederick John

Service Number: 375
Enlisted: 23 February 1915, B Squadron Enlisted at Beauford in central Victoria where teaching. Went into camp at Sturt Street Ballarat
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 23rd Infantry Battalion
Born: Bendigo, Victoria, Australia, 17 June 1892
Home Town: Kangaroo Flat, Greater Bendigo, Victoria
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: School Teacher
Died: Miles, Queensland, Australia, 27 June 1983, aged 91 years, cause of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
Memorials:
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World War 1 Service

23 Feb 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 375, 23rd Infantry Battalion, B Squadron Enlisted at Beauford in central Victoria where teaching. Went into camp at Sturt Street Ballarat
10 May 1915: Involvement Private, SN 375, 23rd Infantry Battalion
10 May 1915: Embarked Private, SN 375, 23rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Euripides, Melbourne
4 Aug 1916: Honoured Military Medal, Pozières, Military Medal Recommendation: ‘At Posier on 4/8/16, For conspicuous gallantry in a bomb attack on the enemy trenches in which they succeeded in killing the crew of a machine gun and disarmed the gun which had been causing us casualties. Jenkins and Lane* are both nominees’. Recommendation: August 9, 1916 For Distinguished Conduct Medal (Military Medal Awarded) Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 184 Date: 14 December 1916 on page 3380 at position 114
20 Sep 1917: Honoured Military Cross, Broodseinde Ridge, Military Cross On 20th September 1917, did valuable work in charge of parties carrying munitions to the front line during advance and consolidation. He made several trips during the day under direct observation, rifle and shell fire. During the BROODSEINDE Operations his work as a Company Officer was full of courage and initiative. Acted as Battalion works Officer at PLOEGSTREET under trying conditions and carried out valuable and extensive work. He always set a splendid example to his men, and is a born leader. Recommendation Lieutenant-General Commanding the 6th Aust. Infantry Brigade Birthday list June 1918, 6th. Aust. Inf. 2nd Australian. 5/03/18
7 Nov 1917: Honoured Mention in Dispatches, Mentioned In Dispatches In Sir Douglas Haig’s Dispatch of November 7, 1917 for Distinguished and Gallant Services and devotion to duty ‘In the Field’ during the period 26 February 1917 to 20 September 1917. AIF List 279, dated 20/09/1917.
1 Sep 1918: Honoured Military Cross and bar, Mont St Quentin / Peronne, Bar to Military Cross 'At the capture of Mont St. Quentin on 1st September 1918, he commanded a company in the first attack, and by his splendid leadership, courage, and initiative he was able to advance 600 yards in the face of a fierce machine gun fire, capturing eighty prisoners and causing heavy enemy casualties. Later, he made a daring reconnaissance over very exposed ground, enabling the second attack to be launched at short notice. The success of the operation was mainly due to his magnificent example of devotion to duty.' Recommendation: Source: Commonwealth of Australia Gazette, 3 June 1919 on page 945 at position 8

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Biography contributed by Jack Coyne

Frederick John JENKINS

Military Medal,

Military Cross,

Bar to Military Cross

& Mention In Depatches. 

 

Military Medal Recommendation 

‘At Posier on 4/8/16, For conspicuous gallantry in a bomb attack on the enemy trenches in which they succeeded in killing the crew of a machine gun and disarmed the gun which had been causing us casualties. Jenkins and Lane* are both nominees’.

Recommendation: August 9, 1916

For Distinguished Conduct Medal (Military Medal Awarded) Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 184 Date: 14 December 1916 on page 3380 at position 114

 

Military Cross

'On 20th September 1917, did valuable work in charge of parties carrying munitions to the front line during advance and consolidation. He made several trips during the day under direct observation, rifle and shell fire. During the BROODSEINDE Operations his work as a Company Officer was full of courage and initiative. Acted as Battalion works Officer at PLOEGSTREET under trying conditions and carried out valuable and extensive work. He always set a splendid example to his men, and is a born leader.' 

Recommendation Lieutenant-General

Commanding the 6th Aust. Infantry Brigade Birthday list June 1918, 6th. Aust. Inf. 2nd Australian. 5/03/18

 

Mentioned In Dispatches

In Sir Douglas Haig’s Dispatch of November 7, 1917 for Distinguished and Gallant Services and devotion to duty ‘In the Field’ during the period 26 February 1917 to 20 September 1917. AIF List 279, dated 20/09/1917.

Bar to Military Cross Recommendation:

'At the capture of Mont St. Quentin on 1st September 1918, he commanded a company in the first attack, and by his splendid leadership, courage, and initiative he was able to advance 600 yards in the face of a fierce machine gun fire, capturing eighty prisoners and causing heavy enemy casualties. Later, he made a daring reconnaissance over very exposed ground, enabling the second attack to be launched at short notice. The success of the operation was mainly due to his magnificent example of devotion to duty.'

Source: Commonwealth of Australia Gazette, 3 June 1919 on page 945 at position 8

 

The Bendigoian published the following article on September 28, 1916: - SERGEANT F.J. JENKINS HONORED. MILITARY MEDAL.

'In the list of military medal awards appears the name of Sergeant Fred. J. Jenkins, a native of Kangaroo Flat, and a son of Mr. and Mrs. Morgan Jenkins. He left Australia in April 1915 and was on board the torpedoed Southland. He landed in Gallipoli early in October, and remained there until the evacuation. He proceeded to France early this year. News of his having been wounded was received through the Defence authorities about a month ago. Sergeant Jenkins has one brother Private Edward Jenkins, still going strong in France and another, Private Griff Jenkins, was recently discharged after spending nearly five months in the trenches at Gallipoli. Before enlisting, Sergeant Jenkins was a school teacher, and taught at Quarry Hill, Kangaroo Flat, Majorca, and Chute. He passed through the Bendigo High School and afterwards spent two years in the Teachers' Training College.[1]

Postscript – all three Jenkin Brothers of Kangaroo Flat returned to Australia from the Great War.

SERVICE DETAILS:

Regimental No: 375
Date of birth:  June 17, 1892
Place of birth: Bendigo
Religion: Church of England
Occupation: School teacher
Address: Kangaroo Flat, Bendigo
Marital status: Single
Age at enlistment: 22
Next of kin: Father, Morgan Jenkins, Kangaroo Flat, Bendigo
Enlistment date: 23 February 1915
Unit name: 23rd Battalion, B Company
Embarked: HMAT A14 Euripides on 10 May 1915
Final Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
Fate: Returned to Australia 23 March 1919

Death: 27 June 1983, Miles, Queensland

 

Frederick Jenkins Biography can be read in the Australian Dictionary of Biography at: - http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/jenkins-frederick-john-12696

At Pozières, Frederick Jenkins with two other soldiers, destroyed an enemy machine-gun while under heavy fire; he was wounded in the right hand. The two other soldiers were both 21 years of age - Corporal Frederick Arthur Lane (SN: 393) an ‘Axeman’ from Monbulk, Victoria who returned to Australia 22 December 1918 and a Scottish born Thomas Loudon (SN 948) a grocer living in Richmond who died of wounds three weeks after this action.

School teacher Frederick Jenkins from Kangaroo Flat was awarded three bravery awards and additionally ‘Mentioned in Despatches’ for bravery. With this number of medals he received the most bravery awards of all 120 Bendigo soldiers in the Great War who received recipients.

There were two other Bendigo schoolteachers who were awarded bravery awards in the Great War. Frederick Baxter from Eaglehawk teaching at Leichhardt north of Bendigo who was awarded MC and Bar and Edwin Wilcock from Long Gully who was teaching at Chute near Beaufort, who was awarded a MC.  

[1] The Bendigoian, September 28, 1916 Page 20

 Photo: Virtual War Memorial Australia. https://vwma.org.au/explore/people/94836

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