The Australian Boer War Memorial
Anzac Parade Canberra

Lieutenant William Spencer DCM MID

Ancestor Details

Name of Ancestor: William Fredrick Spencer

Ancestor's date of birth: 01/02/1874

Ancestor's date of death: 05/08/1962

Cause of Death: old age

Service and Life Before the Boer War: Farmer, born at Dawsley and educated at Narine Public School, South Australia.

Service Number: 134 (4 SAIB), Officer - no number (8 ACH)

Colony or State of enlistment: SA, Place of Enlistment: Adelaide

Unit: 4th South Australian Imperial Bushmen, and 8 Bn Australian Commonwealth Horse (SA)

Rank attained in Boer War: LT, Date Effective: 1902

Highest Rank attained (if served after war): CAPT, Date Effective: 01/03/1916

Murray Page: 358 and 386

Contingent: Fourth South Australian and Third Australian

Ship: Manhattan, Date of Sailing: 01/05/1900

Ship: St Andrew, Date of Sailing: 11/05/1902

Memorial details: Honour Board Unley Town Hall, corner of Unley Road and Oxford Street Unley South Australia.

Awards/Decorations/Commendations: Distinguished Conduct Medal, Mentioned in Despatches, Queen's South Africa Medal with Cape Colony, Transvaal and SA 1901 clasp. Mention in Despatches, 1914/15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal.

Personal Characteristics: detail not provided.

Reasons to go and fight: detail not provided.

Details of service in war: June 1900 - June 1901 with the 4th South Australian Imperial Bushmen in Cape Colony including charge at Bakenkop (3 July 1900) and skirmish at Stinkhoutboom (24 July 1900), and in northern Transvaal including battle of Rhenoster Kop (29 November 1900), great De Wet hunt, and advance on Pietersburg and into east Transvaal. He was wounded at Grasfontein 13 February 1901. For the action when he was wounded he was Mentioned in Despatches, London Gazette 10/09/1901 and awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal. The 8 ACH arrived in South Africa after the war ended.

Service and life after the Boer War: Worked as a foreman carrier. Married, was living at: 8 Partridge Street, Glenelg, South Australia. Commissioned into the AIF as a Lieutenant, Australian Army Service Corps, 28 September 1914. Served at Gallipoli with 11 Coy AASC. Promoted Captain to command the field bakery at Murdos, 25 December 1915. Landed in France as OC 18 Coy AASC 23 June 1916. Was transferred to the 5th Divisional Train 9 May 1917. Mention in Despatches 'London Gazette', fourth Supplement, No. 29664 (11 July 1919); 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 176 (30 November 1916) for 'Distinguished and Gallant Services rendered'. Returned to Australia, AIF appointment terminated 12 June 1919. Lived at 12 Miller Street Unley South Australia.

Descendant Details

Name of Descendant: Donald Paul Spencer, Pooraka SA
Relationship to Ancestor: grandson


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RUSI of NSW Boer War Battlefields