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Arthur Cyril CARVOSSO

Rank Reg/Ser No DOB Enlisted Discharge/Death Board
Cpl 2279A 22y1m 22 Feb 1916 5 May 1920 6

Arthur 'Cyril' Carvosso (1893-1983)


Family background

Arthur 'Cyril' Carvosso was born in Brisbane on 30 December 1893, second son of William Henry Carvosso and Eliza Ann Carvosso (née Adams).

His parents were prominent Brisbane residents; his father served as Supreme Court Sherriff of Queensland, was a renowned cricketer and cricket umpire for interstate matches and Deacon at Wharf Street Congregational Church.  Mrs Carvosso, a tireless voluntary worker in a number of organisations, was president of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union for over 30 years. The family lived in Arthur Street, New Farm.

Schooling and early work life

Cyril attended Brisbane Grammar School from 1909 to 1911 and later joined the company of Chas Sankey Fraser in 1912. In 1916 he completed examinations with honours to become an optometrist.

Enlistment and service

Cyril Carvosso enlisted in Brisbane for AIF service abroad on 22 February 1916 and was given service number 2279. As Acting Sergeant, 52nd Battalion reinforcements, he embarked on HMAT Boorara from Brisbane in August 1916.

He was engaged on battlefields on the Western Front at Bapaume, Amiens, Villers-Bretonneux and Etinehem till fighting ceased in November 1918.

He spent periods of time in hospital during these months, suffering wounding of his hand while in action and ‘trench feet’, a condition caused by prolonged exposure of the feet to the damp, unsanitary, and cold conditions in the muddy war trenches of France.

Post war

After the war, having been appointed to the rank of Corporal, Cyril Carvosso studied at the British Optical Institute, London, gaining the Fellowship of the British Optical Association and the Freemanship of the Spectacle Makers Guild, and becoming a Freeman of the City of London.

Corporal Carvosso returned to Australia per the Friedrichsruh in 1919 carrying Australian troops home. The ship also carried the then Prime Minister Mr Hughes and the Minister for the Navy, Sir Joseph Cook.  He was discharged from military duties on 5 May 1920.

Return to work as an optometrist

Mr Carvosso resumed his career as an optometrist, being manager of branches of Chas Sankey Fraser in Brisbane and Toowoomba for the next nine years. He married Florence Edna Mundell of Taroom at the Presbyterian Church, Dalby, on St David’s Day 1926.

From 1929 to 1932, he had charge of the optical department of F. A. Newman’s Pty Ltd, Collins Street, Melbourne. He next moved to the Queensland town of Gympie where he owned his own business in Mary Street.

Daughters Helen and Janette were born in Melbourne and Gympie respectively. One of Cyril’s interests was astronomy. He lived at The Gap in retirement and died, aged 89 years, in 1983.

Select Bibliography

The Courier-Mail, 9 August 1940 
The Brisbane Courier, 5 Aug 1924, 5 March 1926, 23 February 1932, 3 Sept 1932 
• National Archives of Australia, military records, World War 1 
• Brisbane Grammar School Archives, The Golden Book 
Gympie Times, 2 February 1933 
Western Star, Roma, 21 May 1924 
Brisbane Grammar School Magazine, Vol XXIII, Nov 1920, No 62, page 52
The Queenslander, 13 March 1926 
• Mrs Helen Wagner, Bridgeman Downs, family records 
• Year Books, Wharf Street Congregational Church, Brisbane, 1909-1920

Our acknowledgement to the Carvosso family for their kind contribution of photographs for this story.

Compiled by Noel Adsett, September 2014.  Coloured images uploaded by Miriam King, February 2023 © 



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