Wallet : Private G R Kenihan, 4 Light Horse Field Ambulance, AIF

Accession Number REL/03823.001
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Heraldry
Physical description Cardboard, Leather
Maker Unknown
Date made Unknown
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918

Fine brown leather wallet with fold over front flap stamped with the manufacturer's crest, which includes a lion and unicorn. The wallet is secured by a narrow leather thong that threads through a slot in the back of the wallet. There are three inner compartments lined with blue leather. A fourth compartment is lined with blue leather and blue cardboard, and is covered by a flap which conceals three small compartments for stamps or coins. A fifth compartment inside the end of the wallet is marked in ink 'Herbert Kennihen', while the inside of the main flap is faintly marked '...Herbert Kenihen'.

History / Summary

This wallet was carried by 16968 Private George Roe Kenihan during his service in Palestine with 4 and 5 Light Horse Field Ambulances. Kenihan, who was born at Baroota, South Australia, enlisted in the AIF in Adelaide, on 6 July 1916. He was assigned to the Army Medical Corps and was sent to Seymour in Victoria to undertake specialist medical training. On completion of the course he was assigned to the reinforcements for the Camel Corps Field Ambulance in Palestine. Kenihan left Melbourne for Egypt aboard HMAT A42 Boorara on 10 May 1917. On arrival in Egypt he was transferred to 4 Light Horse Regiment Field Ambulance. He helped to treat the wounded after the Australian charge at Beersheba on 31 October 1917. In September 1918 Kenihan was transferred to 5 Light Horse Field Ambulance, and it was while he was serving with this unit that he took part in the formal Australian entry into Damascus on 2 October 1918. He returned to Australia on 14 July 1919. The wallet may have been presented to Kenihan on his enlistment by his father, Hubert, whose signature appears twice on the inside, and may in fact have originally belonged to him.