Next of kin plaque : Private James Wolftown Keogh, 59th Battalion, AIF

Accession Number REL47449
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Heraldry
Physical description Bronze
Maker Unknown
Date made c 1920
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Bronze next of kin plaque, showing on the obverse, Britannia holding a laurel wreath, the British lion, dolphins, a spray of oak leaves and the words 'HE DIED FOR FREEDOM AND HONOUR' around the edge. Beneath the main figures, the British lion defeats the German eagle. The initials 'ECP', for the designer Edward Carter Preston appear above the lion's right forepaw. A raised rectangle above the lion's head bears the nameBronze next of kin plaque in cardboard box of issue. The plaque shows Britannia and a lion together with the words 'HE DIED FOR FREEDOM AND HONOUR'. The name of the dead soldier, 'JAMES WOLFTOWN KEOGH', is inscribed in raised letters within a raised rectangle.The initials 'ECP', for the designer Edward Carter Preston, appear above the lion's right forepaw. A checker's mark, '9', is impressed between the lion's rear left paw and tail.

History / Summary

Born in Sydney, New South Wales, James Wolftown Keogh was employed as a driver when he enlisted in the AIF on 7 September 1915. After initial training he was posted a private, service number 4814, to the 15th Reinforcements for 2nd Battalion. He embarked from Sydney on 8 March 1916, aboard HMAT A15 Star of England. On arrival in Egypt Keogh was almost immediately transferred to 54th Battalion, but by May had transferred to 59th Battalion. He moved with his new unit to France at the end of June.

Keogh survived the disastrous battle of Fromelles on 19/20 July where 694 men in his battalion became casualties, but was killed near Sailly-sur-la-lys on 31 July. He was 18 years old. Keogh was buried the same day in the Rue-du-Bois Military Cemetery at Fleurbaix.

This commemorative plaque was sent to his father, Patrick Keogh, at the beginning of 1923.