Hilton Stuart Nicholls
Serial No. 2181
Hilton Stuart Nicholls - Information
Hilton Stuart Nicholls was born in Goulburn c1895. He grew up in the area with his two sisters and attended Campbelltown School. Sadly, both his parents passed away, and he went to live with his sister Ruth and her husband Walter Dent, on Renn St in Kogarah Bay. Hilton worked as a horse driver and also served in the Cadets. When the war started, he was still living with his sister, and at the age of 19 wanted to enlist with his mates. Despite Ruth’s initial objection, Hilton joined the AIF in Liverpool on the 7th of April 1915. He was assigned to the 6th Reinforcements, 1st Battalion in April and was then shipped overseas. He departed Sydney Harbour on the 16th of June 1915 on the HMAT Karoola.
After arriving in Egypt, Hilton was transported to Gallipoli, joining his Battalion on the 6th of August. The following day, the 1st Battalion ran across No Man’s Land, rushing the Turkish lines at Lone Pine. Despite being a decoy attack, the Anzacs were successful in seizing the lines. After this horrific battle, Hilton was wounded in action on the 30th of August at Lone Pine. He had only been in line a few weeks. Receiving shocking bullet wounds to his head and body, he was rushed to the Casualty Station at Anzac Cove. From there, he was evacuated on the Hospital Ship Gloucester Castle. However, as the vessel sailed near Gaba Tepe, Hilton died of his wounds on the 30th of August.
Back in Australia, Ruth was receiving mixed reports about what happened to her brother. She had received telegrams that Hilton was both just wounded and recovering, and also killed in action. Apparently, in the 1st Battalion along with Hilton Nicholls 2181, there was a James Nicholl 2182. Reports about what had happened to these soldiers in battle got mixed up in the paperwork at Headquarters. Sadly, this gave Ruth false hope, wishing Hilton was still alive. She began writing the army to figure out what had happened to her brother. His death was finally confirmed, to Ruth’s dismay. Buried at sea, Hilton’s name was later recorded on the Lone Pine Memorial on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey.