Private Charles Dawson

Service number 89
Birth Date 1894
Final Rank Private
  • 37th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Machine Guns
Place Melbourne
Conflict/Operation First World War, 1914-1918

Private Charles Dawson, number 89, enlisted on 27 January 1916 giving his age as 22 years and 4 months and his trade as a laborer. He was the one of five sons of James and Margaret Dawson of Moama, who also had two girls. He was allocated to the Machine Gun Section of the 37th Battalion.

He sailed on 8 June 1916 on the troopship Persic, but developed symptoms of headaches and vomiting and spent three weeks in bed on the ship. On arrival in Cape Town he was hospitalised in the City Infectious Hospital for five weeks. He then spent a further period in the Maitland Hospital. He was diagnosed with Cerebo Spinal Meningitis due to contagion on the troopship. He boarded the troopship Marathon to return to Australia and landed on 24 September 1916. He was discharged as permanently medically unfit for active service on 24 November 1916.

In April 1926 Charles Dawson wrote to the Army Base Records at Victoria Barracks Melbourne requesting a declaration of his discharge that he required for a permanent position in the Victorian Railway. He stated that his discharge (certificate) had been “burnt by mistake and that no other person is making use of same.” He gave his address as the Bagshot Railway Station, via Bendigo, Victoria.



Date of birth 1894
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs) 27 January 1916
Date of embarkation 03 June 1916
Date returned to Australia 24 September 1916
Date of discharge 24 November 1916