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Arthur William MacKenzie Mowle


2nd Australian Flying Squadron & 69th Royal Flying Squadron


Arthur William MacKenzie Mowle - Information

Arthur was the first child of William Stewart and Annie Hawkins Mowle. The Mowle family lived in Sydney, where Arthur was born on the 27th of October 1894 at Boonara in Bondi. The Mowles eventually moved to the Campbelltown area, settling down at Mount Drummond in Minto, as Arthur’s father was working as a clerk with the Legislative Assembly. In Minto, Arthur began working as an architect. He also gained military experience, serving four years in the Commonwealth Forces and as a Lieutenant with the 43rd Infantry Militia. At the age of 22, he applied for a commission in the AIF, joining up in October 1916. Arthur was subsequently appointed 2nd Lieutenant with the 2nd Australian Flying Squad and was shipped overseas from Melbourne onboard the HMAT Ulysses on the 25th of October 1916.

Arthur arrived in Plymouth at the end of December. In early January 1917, Arthur was posted to the 49th Reserve Squadron within the Royal Flying Corps for elementary pilot instruction. He was then marched out to the 37th Squadron in Soampton for further training. In March, Arthur was assigned to the 69th Squadron, Royal Flying Corps. The following month, he completed exercises at the No.1 School of Military Aero Reading in South Carlton. By May, he had returned to the 69th Squadron, prepared for air service in France. The importance of air superiority in relation to battles on the ground began in the First World War. Aerial reconnaissance and being able to drop bombs upon certain targets, led to a new type of warfare. Using specially mounted machine guns, pilots could fire at each other, in an attempt to dominate the sky. German ace Richthofen (the Red Baron) and his Flying Circus, were especially skilled at this style of combat. Unfortunately this meant pilots had only a few weeks life expectancy. A little more than a month after he was promoted Lieutenant, Arthur was shot down in action on the 22nd of July 1917, wounded in his thigh and face. He was evacuated to England for treatment, admitted to the 3rd London General Hospital. The wound to his face was severe. As a result, he was invalided home to Australia on the 31st of October. When he returned home his appointment with the AIF was terminated on the 21st of January 1918.

Arthur returned to the Campbelltown area where he met Andrienne Elsie Genty. Andrienne was born in Minto and was a daughter Leah Warby Genty a prominent Campbelltown resident. Arthur and Andrienne married at St James in Sydney on the 31st of October 1918, and were blessed with four children, Judith, Thea, Robin William and Richard. Arthur continued working as an architect, designing the Macquarie Cinema, Campbelltown’s first movie theatre on the corner of Queen and Brown St. Arthur passed away six years after his loving wife on the 27th of June 1987.