Similar items over time

Photograph - Australian Serviceman Private Edgar James McCarthy, 8th Battalion, A.I.F., 1916 Image Reg. No: ST 036587

Alternative Name(s): Postcard

Black and white studio photograph of Australian serviceman, Private Edgar James McCarthy, No 5422, 8th Battalion, A.I.F. (died of wounds, 22 April 1917).

Edgar McCarthy was a 19-year-old labourer from Rosedale, Gippsland, Victoria, when he enlisted on 4 February 1916. As he was under 21 years of age, his father Henry gave his consent. Edgar was placed in the 8th Batallion, 17th Reinforcements (no. 5422) on 19 January and embarked for England on 4 April on the HMAT Euripides. He was shipped to France on 30 December 1916 and joined his unit on 4 February 1917 and his battalion on the 7th - probably in preparation for moving to the front. He was wounded in action on 16 April, including a fractured back and a severe head injury ('SW Head' may refer to a shell wound, although another document in his file refers to a gunshot wound). Edgar died at 8:40pm on 22 April at the 13th General Hospital, Boulogne, France. He had survived as little as ten weeks at the font.

Eight years later records in the National Archives indicate that his mother was 'still a patient at the Kew Hospital for the Insane'. Alice's incarceration was not related to the death of her son - she had been admitted there in 1899, probably as a result of post-natal depression. It is not known to whom this and other items relating to Edgar was given, although a note in the Museum's supplementary file says that the donation of his material was 'handed to me (possibly the donor) from his mother, Alice McCarthy, about 1950'.
Black and white photograph on paper.
Description Of Content:
Black and white studio photograph of Australian serviceman, Private Edgar James McCarthy, No 5422, 8th Battalion, A.I.F. (died of wounds, 22 April 1917). The photograph is full-length, showing Private McCarthy in uniform wearing his field service cap. The painted backdrop shows a rural scene with a river and boat in the foreground.
Acquisition Information:
Donation & Subsequent Transfer from Returned Servicemen's League of Australia Limited (RSL) Victorian Branch, 1981
Discipline: Technology

More information

Tagged with: wars conflicts, death mourning, portraits, world war i 1914-1918, military memorabilia, militaria australian
Themes this item is part of: Baker & Rouse, Arms Collection, Images & Image Making Collection, Public Life & Institutions Collection
Primary Classification: MILITARY HISTORY
Secondary Classification: Service
Tertiary Classification: portraits
Inscriptions: Handwritten on back: 'Mrs. B. Davis / Drouin / Aunty Clara / from / Edgar'
Printed on back top right corner: 'KODAK / AUSTRAL / KODAK / AUSTRAL'
Format: Photograph: Black & White
Person Depicted: Private Edgar McCarthy - 8th Battalion, A.I.F., 1916

8th Battalion, A.I.F.
Maker: Kodak (Australasia) Pty Ltd, Australia

Maker of photographic material, rather than photographer. The actual inscription on the image is 'Kodak Austral'.
References: National Archives of Australia - Edgar James McCarthy, item barcode 1939171.


Lizzy Posted on 05 Sep 2012 5:36 AM
well if you belive in ghost then i have edgar in my house i think i picked him up when i went to france

Add your comment

  • Museum Victoria does not provide valuations, for more information please visit the valuation infosheet
  • Please note that Museum Victoria staff will not normally respond to comments posted on our website.
Yes No