Next of Kin plaque: Sergeant Ernest Herbert Jones, 4th Field Ambulance, AIF

Accession Number AWM2020.621.4.1
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Heraldry
Maker Unknown
Place made United Kingdom
Date made c 1922
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 name 'ERNEST HERBERT JONES'. A checker's mark, '15', is impressed behind the lion's left rear paw. The plaque is contained in its original cardboard sleeve.

History / Summary

Born in Sydney, New South Wales, Ernest Herbert Jones was employed as a draftsman in the public service in Newcastle when he enlisted in the AIF on 2 September 1914. He had already served for two years in the militia, in the Australian Army Medical Corps. After initial training he was posted a corporal, service number 320, to the Medical Corps details attached to 1st Field Artillery Brigade. He sailed for overseas service on 18 October, aboard HMAT A8 Argyllshire.

After training in Egypt Jones served on Gallipoli until July 1915 when he was evacuated sick with enteric fever. He was transferred to England for treatment in September and only rejoined his unit in Egypt in March 1916, where he was transferred to 4th Field Ambulance. The unit moved to France in early June for service on the Western Front. Jones was promoted sergeant on 1 July.

Jones was killed at Mouquet Farm on 3 September, while attending to a wounded man in No Man's Land. He was 22 years old. His body was not recovered or buried due to the intensity of the gunfire, and could not be located subsequently. His name is commemorated on the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial.

This memorial plaque was sent to Jones's father, William E Jones, in August 1922. His elder brother, 130 Private William Henry Jones, enlisted in the AIF on 28 December 1916 and served with 60th Australian Light Railway Operating Company. He survived the war.