The AIF Project

John Harrison ALLEN

Date of birth23 November 1888
Place of birthKeswick, South Australia
ReligionChurch of England
AddressAshford Road, Keswick, South Australia
Marital statusMarried
Age at embarkation27
Height5' 7"
Weight128 lbs
Next of kinWife, Mrs Martha Allen, Ashford Road, Keswick, South Australia
Previous military serviceServed for 4 years in the 78th Infantry, Citizen Military Forces; still serving at time of AIF enlistment.
Enlistment date5 September 1916
Rank on enlistmentLieutenant
Unit name32nd Battalion, 9th Reinforcement
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A73 Commonwealth on 21 September 1916
Rank from Nominal RollCaptain
Unit from Nominal Roll32nd Battalion


Unit: 32nd Battalion
Promotion date: 1 July 1917

Recommendations (Medals and Awards)

Bar to Military Cross

Work at Morcourt Valley on 8 August 1918.
Recommendation date: 11 August 1918

FateReturned to Australia 5 July 1919

Military Cross

'For conspicuous gallantry and good leadership. When the enemy attacked our first wave from a point in the rear, Captain Allen, who was in command of the second wave, quickly grasped the situation and counter attacked with most determined vigour, killing a large number of the enemy and taking fifteen prisoners and a machine gun. His dash and initiative greatly contributed to the success of the operation.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 31
Date: 4 March 1919

Bar to Military Cross

'For conspicuous gallantry and resource in an attack. When a gap of some 500 yards appeared in the line, and the advance was held up, he at once led his company forward, and by skilful leadership captured the enemy position with over 100 prisoners. He set a splendid example of coolness and initiative at a critical time.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 61
Date: 23 May 1919

Discharge date2 October 1919
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked Adelaide, 21 September 1916; disembarked Plymouth, England, 14 november 1916.

Proceeded overseas to France, 22 January 1917; taken on strength, 32nd Bn, in the field, 26 January 1917.

Detached to 5th Army Sniping School, 13 May 1917; rejoined Bn, 28 May 1917.

Promoted Captain, 1 July 1917.

Detached to 2nd Army Infantry School, 12 August 1917; rejoined Bn, 15 September 1917.

On leave to United Kingdom, 14 December 1917; rejoined Bn from leave, 1 January 1918.

Detached to 4th Army Musketry School, 15 March 1918; rejoined Bn, 14 May 1918.

Awarded Military Cross.

Detached to 4th Army Infantry School, 3 October 1918; rejoined Bn, 3 November 1918.

Awarded Bar to Military Cross.

On leave to United Kingdom, 7 February 1919; rejoined Bn from leave, 19 February 1919.

Detached to 30th Bn under amalgamation for demobilisation, 12 March 1919.

Marched out to England for return to Australia, 12 May 1919; marched in to No 5 Group, Weymouth, 13 May 1919.

Commenced return to Australia on board HT 'Port Melbourne', 5 July 1919; disembarked Adelaide, 18 August 1919; appointment terminated (discharged: cessation of hostilities), Adelaide, 2 October 1919.

Medals: Military Cross and Bar, British War Medal, Victory Medal
Date of death29 April 1963
Age at death74
SourcesNAA: B2455, ALLEN John Harrison

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