The AIF Project


Regimental number929
Place of birthBuln Buln, Gippsland, Victoria
SchoolState School, Victoria
ReligionChurch of England
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Next of kinFather, J J Underwood, Warburton Road, East Camberwell, Melbourne, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed in the Cadets and Citizen Military Forces.
Enlistment date11 February 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name22nd Battalion, D Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/39/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A38 Ulysses on 10 May 1915
Rank from Nominal RollLance Corporal
Unit from Nominal Roll22nd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 4 October 1917
Age at death23
Age at death from cemetery records23
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 23), Belgium

The Menin Gate Memorial (so named because the road led to the town of Menin) was constructed on the site of a gateway in the eastern walls of the old Flemish town of Ypres, Belgium, where hundreds of thousands of allied troops passed on their way to the front, the Ypres salient, the site from April 1915 to the end of the war of some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

The Memorial was conceived as a monument to the 350,000 men of the British Empire who fought in the campaign. Inside the arch, on tablets of Portland stone, are inscribed the names of 56,000 men, including 6,178 Australians, who served in the Ypres campaign and who have no known grave.

The opening of the Menin Gate Memorial on 24 July 1927 so moved the Australian artist Will Longstaff that he painted 'The Menin Gate at Midnight', which portrays a ghostly army of the dead marching past the Menin Gate. The painting now hangs in the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, at the entrance of which are two medieval stone lions presented to the Memorial by the City of Ypres in 1936.

Since the 1930s, with the brief interval of the German occupation in the Second World War, the City of Ypres has conducted a ceremony at the Memorial at dusk each evening to commemorate those who died in the Ypres campaign.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: James Joseph and Helen Mary UNDERWOOD, 12 Warburton Road,Camberwell, Victoria. Native of Melbourne
Family/military connectionsBrothers: 2509 Pte Charles Edward UNDERWOOD, 5th Machine Gun Bn, returned to Australia, 8 August 1919; 27524 Driver James Augustine UNDERWOOD, 6th Field Artillery Brigade, returned to Australia, 4 June 1919.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Appointed Lance Corporal, 26 August 1915.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (Gallipoli), 30 August 1915. Disembarked Alexandria from Mudros, 27 December 1915 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 19 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 26 March 1916.

Admitted to 7th Field Ambulance, 11 May 1916 (venereal disease), and transferred to 8th Casualty Clearing Station. Transferred to 26th General Hospital, Etaples, 13 May 1916; to No. 9 Stationary Hospital, 14 May 1916; to 18th General Hospital, Camiers, 29 June 1916; to 2nd Australian Divisional Base Depot, Etaples, 2 July 1916; rejoined Bn, 31 July 1916.

Admitted to 38th Casualty Clearing Station, 10 November 1916 (trench feet); transferred to 12th General Hospital, Rouen, 12 November 1916; to England, 20 November 1916, and admitted to No. 3 Australian General Hospital. Transferred to 3rd Auxiliary Hospital, Dartford, 30 November 1916; discharged, 27 December 1916; marched in to No. 1 Command Depot, Perham Downs, 28 December 1916.

Proceeded overseas to France, 16 February 1917; rejoined Bn, 25 March 1917.

Killed in action, 4 October 1917.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal


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