|Date of birth|
|Place of birth||Singleton, New South Wales|
|School||Erskinsville Public School, New South Wales|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||69 Watkin Street, Newtown, Sydney, New South Wales|
|Age at embarkation||22|
|Next of kin||Wife, Mrs Essie Blackburn, 69 Watkins Street, Newtown, Sydney, New South Wales|
|Rank on enlistment||Private|
|Unit name||17th Battalion, 8th Reinforcement|
|AWM Embarkation Roll number||23/34/2|
|Embarkation details||Unit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A60 Aeneas on
|Regimental number from Nominal Roll||3651|
|Rank from Nominal Roll||Private|
|Unit from Nominal Roll||55th Battalion|
|Fate||Killed in Action
|Place of death or wounding||Fleurbaix, France (Battle of Fromelles)|
|Age at death||23|
|Age at death from cemetery records||22|
|Place of burial||No known grave|
|Commemoration details||V.C. Corner (Panel No 11), Australian Cemetery Memorial, Fromelles, France|
|Panel number, Roll of Honour,|
Australian War Memorial
|Miscellaneous information from|
|Parents: Herbert and Cathrine BLACKBURN; Wife: Essie BLACKBURN, 126 Lord Street, Newtown, New South Wales|
War service: embarked Sydney, 20 December 1915; disembarked Egypt; joined 5th Training Bn. Allotted to and proceeded to join 55th Bn, AIF, Zeitoun, Egypt, 16 February 1916.
Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 19 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 29 June 1916.
Reported as Missing in Action, 20 July 1916. Court of Enquiry, held in the field, 26 July 1916, pronounced fate as 'Killed in Action'.
Two soldiers later gave evidence bearing on his fate. 3654 Lance Corporal C.S. WATSON, 55th Bn, said: 'Blackburn, called Harry, was in D Company and was killed on July 19th at Bois Grenier. Our Division was in it and the 55th were on fatigue, carrying ammunition, etc. I saw Blackburn lying dead in the trench, and afterwards I saw his grave at Sailly, in the Cemetery on the right hand side of the road going from Sailly to Estaires.' (Evidence given at Boulogne, 5 April 1917.) 3058 Pte D.L. GAY said: 'He was in D.X111 and I saw him in "No Man's Land" on 19/7/16 about half way between the lines. This was about 150 yards from our trench. I was about 50 yards away at the time but I could recognise him. He was hit, I think, in the shoulder by a machine gun, but I do not think it was a very severe wound and he lay down in a shell hole on his way back. This shell hole was about 150 yards from our trenches. He was about 5ft.6in thick set, dark and came over from Australia as a Reinforcement to the 17th Battalion.' (Evidence given at 5th Australian General Base Depot, Etaples, 17 August 1916.)
Statement, 194 Sergeant L.C. WOOD, 55th Bn (patient, No 9 Red Cross Hospital, Calais), 19 October 1916: 'He was shot in the shoulder in "No Man's Land". He got up and went into a gutter and has not been heard of since. His wound was not very bad and one of the boys attended to him. He may have been hit since.'
Second statement, 252 Pte C. KENTS, 55th Bn (patient, No 14 General Hospital, Boulogne), 4 April 1917: The 55th were acting as carriers on July 19th at Fromelles. My section as carrying sandbags. We had just got through our barbed wire when a M.G. opened and got 8 out of 13 men. This was about 6 p.m. Blackburn was shot through the knee and the chest. He said he would crawl back, but I think he couldn't live. He was not seen again.'
Note on file: 'No trace Germany. Cert. by Capt. Mills 10.10.19.'
Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
|Sources||NAA: B2455, BLACKBURN Horace Samuel
Red Cross File No 401001