• Hilton Stuart Nicholls

Army / Flying Corps
  • 1st Australian Infantry Battalion
  • 1st Brigade
  • Private

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  • British War Medal
  • 1914–1915 Star
  • Birth

    Goulburn, NSW, Australia

  • Enlistment - WW1

    Liverpool, New South Wales, Australia

  • Hilton Stuart Nicholls

  • Hilton Nicholls

  • Hilto Nicholls

    Monday, 1 July 1895

  • Hilton Nicholls

    Wednesday, 7 April 1915

  • Hilton Stuart Nicholls

    Wednesday, 7 April 1915

  • Hilton Nicholls

    Monday, 30 August 1915

  • Hilton Nicholls

    Monday, 30 August 1915

  • Hilton Nicholls

    Monday, 30 August 1915

Stories and comments
    • The Short Life of a Kogarah Horse Driver
    • Posted by annstewie, Wednesday, 26 November 2014

    PRIVATE HILTON STUART NICHOLLS SERVICE NO: 1592 1ST BATTALION -- 6TH REINFORCEMENTS Hilton Nicholls was born at Tarlo Gap near Goulburn, NSW in 1895. Very little is known of his parents or childhood, except that he was the fourth of seven children and went to primary school in Campbelltown. Hilton's maternal grandmother was Christiana Stewart, the youngest child of Monaro pioneers William and Esther Stewart, who had migrated to NSW in 1842 to escape religious persecution and poverty in Northern Island. Christiana was only four years old, when her mother was struck dead by lightning at Cooma Creek in 1857. Her father died nine years later and she then resided with her eldest brother Hugh and family, until she married carrier Alexander John Nicholls in Cooma, in 1872. Two children were born of the marriage – Elizabeth Louisa, Hilton's mother, - and William John. According to his service records, Hilton enlisted at Liverpool on 7th April, 1915. He was a 19 year old horse driver, living with his older sister Ruby, her husband Walter Dent (who was an invalid) and their three young children, at Kogarah, NSW. Ruby was named as his next-of-kin. She immediately had Hilton discharged from the army, as he was the family breadwinner, but he must have persuaded her to change her mind, as he re-enlisted a few days later. Hilton is described as having a dark complexion, brown eyes, black hair and weighing 122 pounds. He was 5 feet, 2 inches tall. Assigned to the 1st Battalion, he landed at Gallipoli on 7th August 1915. Hilton soon understood his small chance of survival. He wrote to Ruby on 24th August, counting himself lucky to be in one piece, having been into the trenches six times. But his luck ran out quickly. On the 30th August he received gunshot wounds to the head and chest. He was transferred to the hospital ship “Gloucester Castle”, but died and was buried at sea off Gaba Tepe, that same day. Meanwhile Ruby received a telegram, informing her that Hilton had been wounded and was recuperating in a hospital in Alexandria. This was soon followed by another telegram, with the heartbreaking news, that in fact her brother had been dead for two weeks. Ruby wrote to the army, hoping against hope, that there had been a mistake. The reply only confirmed however, that Hilton was dead. The first telegram had contained incorrect information - the soldier recuperating in Alexandria was found to be a Private J. Nicholls. Ruby's husband died soon after and she later remarried. Hilton's name is listed on the Lone Pine Memorial, Gallipoli and on Panel 38 at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra. REFERENCES: “From Kilkeel to Cooma-The Story of William and Esther Stewart of Monaro”, William and Esther Stewart Family History Group, South East Printing, Cooma Army Service Record WW1 Series B2455 NAA