In Memory of 54 Henry Harman Fairnham

Henry Fairnham 2
54 Henry Harman Fairnham

 54 Henry Harman Fairnham

Henry” Harry” Fairnham age 30 was a fitter and turner from Glebe. It appears he and his brother lived at 123 Abercrombie st , City (Redfern) NSW,  he was 5 ft 8 “ and described as of a dark complexion with dark hair going grey.

On the 26th May 1915 Henry was on his way towards the beach to draw some stores from the No .1 Clearing station as he was the assistant Quartermaster, when he was blown to pieces by a direct hit by a shell from “Beechy Bill”.

His friend Cpl. Norman Masters,  gave an account of what happened……..

“I knew Fairnham when we joined in Sydney. He was in my section and we called him Harry. I was with him at Anzac. He was killed about 20 yards from the beach. He was on his way to the beach to draw stores , and was assistant Q/Master. He was hit in the back by “Beachy Bill”. The shell passing right through him. I saw him about a quarter of an hour after he was hit, and he was then dead. We buried him near the beach, and his name can be read on the wooden cross reproduced by the “Sydney Mail” of the 1st Dec. He was one of the best chaps and was always talking of his young lady. He was giving up the job he was on, and it was about his last trip”.
Source : (AWM record) Red Cross File No 1030801D

 

153 Phillip Carmichael, 209 William Cridland and 154 Albert Anderson, good friends of Henry were informants to his death, they stated how…………….. “ Henry was a reserved and quiet man and a great favourite. He was very highly thought of by all.” …………….“he was one of the best”.

He was buried by his close mates, 209 William Cridland and 154 Albert Anderson ,   Initially buried at the Hillside Beach cemetery Vll – Anzac Cove. His name is also remembered on the historic Anzac Cross “Where Heroes Lie” below.

 

where heroes lie
” Where Heroes Lie”

 

Henry left a will 2 months before his death, leaving all his property and effects to his young lady back home in Australia.

Miss. M Dodds of 156 Everleigh st, Redfern was his lady back home and she received 2 parcels of his personal effects nearly a year after his death at Anzac Cove.
His possessions consisted of a damaged nickel watch, 6 coins, a purse, a key, stud, 3 pens all damaged, a knife, a sovereign case, 2 pocket books and a handkerchief. Also he had some cards, photos and some stones which perhaps were souvinered from the great Pyramids in Egypt. Small momentoes , but these would have been treasures to Miss Dodds.

Exactly one year later on the anniversary of Henry’s death, Miss M. Dodds inserted in the Roll of Honours in the Sydney Morning Herald the following,

FAIRNHAM.-In loving memory of Sapper H. H. Fairnham
Killed in action at the Dardanelles, May 26, 1915.
On Australia’s roll of honour you will find this hero’s name

………. Inserted by M. Dodds.

Source : (AWM record) Red Cross File No 1030801D

His eldest brother 2329 Joseph Huston Fairnham was also in the AIF and a driver.  He was invalided home in 1919, both parents of Henry and Joseph were deceased.  Joseph was later living with his sister in 1920. He received all of Henry’s medals and war correspondence.

Footnotes:

1. “Beechy Bill”…. the name given to the Turkish battery which constantly shelled the beach at Anzac Cove.

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