Typed letter on white printed proforma, headed 'Australian Imperial Expeditionary Forces', certifying that World War I soldier Private Albert Edward Kemp was killed in action on 21 September 1917. His place of death is noted as 'no record available'.
Albert's military records indicate that he died in the trenches at Glencorse Wood, Belgium, where fierce fighting had been raging. A fellow soldier recorded the details of Albert's death for authorities, and his description was sent to Albert's wife Annie in Caulfield: 'I saw him killed by a German bomb whilst we were holding our first objective at Glencross [ie. Glencorse] Wood. He is not buried as far as I know.' Albert's body was never found. He is commemorated at 29 The Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium. His name is located at panel 47 in the Commomorative Area at the Australian War Memorial.
White printed proforma, headed 'Australian Imperial Expeditionary Forces', onto which is typed additional information.
Albert Edward Kemp was a 32-year-old butcher, living at 8 Normanby Ave, Caulfield and married to Annie Josephine, when he enlisted. Born in South Yarra, he was a small man, 5'4½", and weighed only eight stone. He and Annie had a daughter, Ethel Mavis, and a son, George Percival. Albert enlisted at Royal Park on 4 October 1916, and was assigned to the 22nd Reinforcements, 6th Battalion - regimental number 6800. His battalion left Melbourne 25 October 1916 - just 21 days after Albert enlisted - on the 'Ulysses' with two officers and 150 O/Rs. The ship arrived in Plymouth three days after Christmas.
A little over one month later, on 1 February 1917, Albert was disciplined for being absent without leave from midnight and was apprehended the next afternoon. He forfeited 18 days' pay for his offence. He was shipped to France on 27 March, and probably went into action in the trenches. On 13 July Albert was again in trouble, this time for disobeying orders from a superior officer. (It is unclear what his punishment was, but '48 hours' may refer to imprisonment). Two months later, on 21 September 1917, Albert died in the trenches in Glencorse Wood, Belgium. He is buried at 29 The Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium. His name is located at panel 47 in the Commomorative Area at the Australian War Memorial.
Some time in 1918, Albert's belongings were sent in error to a family who had lost a member by the same name in Wonthaggi, and Annie received that man's belongings. In June she was asked to return the other Pte Kemp's belongings. Annie received a war pension, but appears to have fallen on hard times - suggested by her need for assistance with a grocery bill approved in one of the documents. She moved to 19 Raleigh St, Malvern in 1922. It is unclear what happened to Ethel, as only George is mentioned from the early 1920s. Further research is required.
The family's home at 8 Normanby Ave is still standing, largely with original façade; their street overall is also largely original.
Text: Australian Imperial Expeditionary Forces/This is to Certify that, according to the records, No 6800A/Private Albert Edward Kemp,/6th Battalion,/Australian Imperial Force./was killed in action/at (no record available) on 21st September 1917/The official notification of the above is contained in Cable No C.I.B.L./1914, from the Commandant, A.I.F. Headquarters, dated London, 13th/October, 1917, confirmed by Mail from the Commandant, A.I.F. Head-/quarters, dated London, 15th October, 1917/Melbourne, 29th January 1918.
Type of item
2D Dimensions - Document
21.1 cm (Width), 16.8 cm (Height)
216 mm (Width), 167 mm (Height)
Measurement From Conservation.
National Archives of Australia effectively holds the rest of the Kemp collection, in series B2455/1 - barcode 7368872 - KEMP ALBERT EDWARD. It includes his enlistment papers, medical examination and war records. Some of the records relate directly to the Kemp collection the Museum is acquiring, including information about his tree in the Avenue of Honour. It also includes what appear to be receipts for the medals in this collection.