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DAVIDSON, Frank Stanley (1892-1918) +

DAVIDSON, Frank Stanley (1892-1918)

Frank Stanley Davidson was born on 17 August 1892 at Ascot Vale, the son of Frank Lindsay Davidson and Ellen nee Tipton. He entered the College in 1907 and his address at the time was Railway Station, Geelong.

At College, he won the following awards:
1907, 1st, Algebra, Upper 4th Form.
1907, 1st, Geometry, Upper 4th Form.
1907, 1st, Latin, Middle 4th Form.
1907, 1st, French, Middle 4th Form.
1908, 2nd, Arithmetic, 5th Form A.

After passing the Junior and Senior Examinations, he was articled to Messrs Laird and Buchan, Architects, for four years. He joined the Geelong Camp in September 1915, and left Australia for Egypt as a Lance Corporal in 5 FCE on 23 November 1915 on HMAT A40 Ceramic. He gained his commission there, and proceeded to France in June 1916, where he took part in the engagements at Pozieres, Mouquet Farm and Bapaume. He attended a Bridging School at Aired for a fortnight from 8 December 1917, early in the following year he was admitted to Tidworth Military Hospital, suffering influenza.

In August 1918 he was transferred to the 2nd Field Company Australian Engineers, with rank of Captain, he took leave to England, and had only been back with his unit a week when he was killed by a 5.9 shell while sitting at the mess with other officers and soldiers at Roisel on 15 September. The shell exploded in the mess, he was buried under the debris, on being dug out he was unconscious, and died without regaining consciousness. Captain Davidson was buried at Tincourt New British Cemetery, Peronne - Grave V.B.20.

The AWM Collection holds two photographs, one showing Australian Engineers of the 1st Army Troops Company completing the roof of a concrete pillbox. The camouflage netting screens the work from enemy observation, shown are 2nd Cpl C H Patrick, T/Sgt S Howard, Sappers M Ryan, P L Davies, and A L Long, Lt E G Goodwin MC, and Lt F S Davidson; and the second showing ‘the remains of a dugout at Roisel, France, which served as the Officers Mess of the 2nd Field Company Australian Engineers. On 15 September 1918, at about 4:00pm, Lt G K Kerslake, 1st Field Company Australian Engineers, having just returned from England, joined Captain F S Davidson, Captain R A Clinton MC and two Sappers who acted as batmen for the officer, Spr J B Morgan and Spr W Young, all of the 2nd Field Company Australian Engineers, for afternoon tea in the dugout. The dugout received a direct shell hit and all but Captain Clinton, receiving only minor injuries, were instantly killed. They were buried the following day at Tincourt New British Cemetery, France. This photograph is from an Australian Red Cross Wounded and Missing Enquiry Bureau file.

Davidson’s cousin, Pte James Larcombe Tipton, the son of William and Jane (Linton) Tipton, of Carlton, 60 Battalion, was killed on 19 July, 1916 at Fleurbaix, his name is commemorated at VC Corner Australian Cemetery, France, Panel 22. His brother, John Harold Davidson (1895- 1971), was also educated at Geelong College.

Sources: Based on an edited extract from Geelong Collegians at the Great War compiled by James Affleck. pp25-26 (citing Pegasus December 1918; Commonwealth War Graves Commission; Australian War Memorial; Photo, Pegasus December 1918; AWM E02346).
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