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Charles Chalmers JAMESON

Rank Reg/Ser No DOB Enlisted Discharge/Death Board
2 Lieut 1019 19y8m 16 Sep 1915 4 Apr 1917 KA 2 & 7

Second Lieutenant Charles Chalmers Jameson (1895 – 1917)


Family background and early life

Charles Chalmers Jameson was born on 6 December 1895 at Melbourne, son of Charles Jameson who became a Supreme Court Judge of the Queensland Bench, and Maude Howard (née Macarthur).

Charles Jameson attended Toowoomba Grammar and Townsville Grammar Schools where he served in the cadet corps and the rifle club.  He matriculated to the Faculty of Arts, University of Queensland on 18 March 1914 and was a collegian at Emmanuel College, Spring Hill.  He was known to Rev. Dr Ernest Merrington1 then Minister at Saint Andrew’s Presbyterian Church and closely associated with the founding of Emmanuel College and the wellbeing of its students.


When Charles enlisted for service in the Australian Infantry Force on 16 September 1915, he named his father, Judge Charles Jameson as next-of-kin.  His occupation was listed as Judge’s Associate, his religious denomination Church of England and his age 19 years.  Given the rank of Warrant Officer, Charles Jameson was allotted to the 42nd Battalion, B Company, for training at Enoggera.  He was promoted to Company Sergeant Major on 3 June 1916 and embarked with his unit from Sydney on board HMAT Borda two days later.

Service overseas

During further training in Britain, Charles Jameson was appointed Second Lieutenant on 6 September 1916.  The 42nd Australian Infantry Battalion was deployed in France from 26 November 1916 and entered the front line for the first time on 23 December.  Charles was admitted to hospital with mumps on 26 December and rejoined his unit on 13 January.  

Killed in action in Ypres

The winter of 1916-17 was horrendous and the 42nd spent much of it in the front line, the remainder alternating between training and labouring in the rear areas.  In 1917 operations were focussed on the Ypres sector of Belgium.  He was killed in action on 4 April 1917.

Judge Jameson received a parcel containing his son’s belongings in August 1917, consisting of numerous books, items of clothing, a war atlas, one diary, photos, Tennyson’s Poems, one Latin Testament, a map of London, Carlyle’s Sayings, keys and notebooks.

While serving as the Central Judge of the Supreme Court based in Rockhampton in 1922, Judge Jameson received a letter to which he replied:

 “I received by last mail two days ago with much gratitude the King’s Message to those who have sons who fell in the Great War amongst whom was my son 2nd Lieut 42 Battalion.  The scroll has not arrived but is doubtless in Brisbane as I am only here on duty temporarily my headquarters being Rockhampton.  I shall send the official receipt later when I receive the Memorial Scroll.

Yours faithfully,

Charles Jameson.”

Remembered with honour in Ploegsteert, Belgium and Australia

Second Lieutenant Charles Chalmers Jameson was buried at Berks Cemetery Extension, in the village of Ploegsteert in the Ypres Salient on the Western Front in Belgium where he is remembered with honour.

His brief and courageous life is honoured in Australia too.  On the University of Queensland Roll of Honour are the Latin words, “Pro Patria Ceciderunt”.  His name is inscribed on honour boards at Emmanuel College, Toowoomba Grammar School, Saint Andrew’s Uniting Church2, Townsville Grammar School and the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.

1. C. C. Jameson, Emmanuel College student, is named in E Merrington’s Memoirs, page 69
2. Spelling on Saint Andrew’s Honour Board includes letter “i”, in error.

Select Bibliography
• Pederson Peter, The Anzacs - Gallipoli to the Western Front, Helicon Press, Camberwell, 2007
• Carlyon Les, The Great War, Macmillan, Sydney, 2006
• Merrington E. N., Memoirs, unpublished, 1955
• National Archives of Australia, military records
The Courier-Mail, 29 June 1936, page 12
• Supreme Court Library Queensland, Judicial Profiles, online
• First World War Embarkation Rolls
• University of Queensland Roll of Honour and Roll of Service 1914-1919
• Commonwealth War Graves Commission
• Townsville Grammar School, The Grammarian, the 125th Anniversary Edition, Vol 17, 2013, pages 7 and 14
• Toowoomba Grammar School, studio portrait
• Australian War Memorial, Roll of Honour cards, 1914-1918 War, Army

Compiled by N. E. Adsett, Brisbane, February 2015 ©



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