Thornton Clarke

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Thornton Clarke
Thornton Clarke (footballer).jpeg
Personal information
Full name Thornton Gainsborough Clarke
Nickname(s) Tom
Date of birth(1891-11-27)27 November 1891
Place of birth Essendon, Victoria
Date of death 19 July 1916(1916-07-19) (aged 24)
Place of death Fromelles, France
Original team(s) Mt Lyell [1]
Height 180 cm (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 74 kg (163 lb)
Playing career1
YearsClubGames (Goals)
1911 Fitzroy (VFL) 4 (0)
1910-1915 Essendon Association (VFA) 88 (218)
Total92 (218)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1915.
Career highlights
  • VFA Leading goalkicker 1914
Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com

Thornton Gainsborough "Tom" Clarke (27 November 1891 – 19 July 1916) was an Australian rules footballer who played with Fitzroy in the Victorian Football League (VFL), and the Essendon Association Football Club in the Victorian Football Association (VFA).

Contents

Family

The son of Arthur Clarke (-1934), [2] [3] and Rebecca Ann Clarke (-1940), née Cooke, [4] [5] [6] Thornton Gainsborough Clarke was born in Essendon, Victoria on 27 November 1891.

He married Annie Muriel Walker (1889-1976) on 16 June 1915. [7] [8]

Their son, Thornton Vernon Clarke — later, Flight Lieutenant Thornton Vernon Clarke, DFC (408954) — was born on 4 March 1916, after Clarke had left Australia with the First AIF. [9]

Football

Fitzroy (VFL)

Granted a permit from Mount Lyell to Fitzroy on 17 May 1911, [10] 19-year-old Clarke played four First XVIII games for Fitzroy in the 1911 VFL season.

Essendon A (VFA)

He played in 88 games and scored 218 goals over six seasons (1910 to 1915) for Essendon Association Football Club in the Victorian Football Association (VFA).

In 1913 and 1914 he was the VFA's leading goalkicker, with 58 and 46 goals respectively.

Military service

Qualified as an electrical engineer, and employed at G. Weymouth Pty. Ltd., Electrical Engineers, in Richmond, [11] he enlisted in the First AIF in July 1915, and served with the 60th Infantry Battalion.

Death

External video
Nuvola apps kaboodle.svg Thornton Gainsborough Clarke: A video profile of Thornton Clarke, killed at the Battle of Fromelles in 1916: St Clare's College, Waverley: on Youtube (5 September 2018). [12] [13]

Clarke was killed in action on 19 July 1916, soon after arriving on the Western Front, during the Battle of Fromelles. [14] [15] [16] [17]

Initially listed as "missing", [18] [19] he was officially declared "killed in action", by a Court of Enquiry held in France on 4 August 1917. [20]

Buried in a mass grave at the time of his death, his remains were never recovered, and he is commemorated at the V.C. Corner Australian Cemetery and Memorial in Fromelles, France.

See also

Footnotes

  1. Holmesby, Russell; Main, Jim (2007). The Encyclopedia Of AFL Footballers. BAS Publishing. ISBN   978-1-920910-78-5.
  2. Deaths: Clarke, The Age, (Monday, 6 August 1934), p.1.; In Memoriam: Clarke, The Age, (Tuesday, 4 August 1936), p1.
  3. About People, The Age, (Monday, 6 August 1934), p.8.
  4. Marriages: Clarke—Cooke, The Age, (Tuesday, 13 September 1881), p.1.
  5. Marriage: Clarke—Cooke, The Argus, (Thursday, 13 September 1931), p.1.
  6. Deaths: Clarke, The Argus, (Thursday, 26 September 1940), p.4.
  7. Engagements, (Melbourne) Punch, (Thursday, 25 March 1915), p.29.
  8. Marriages: Clarke—Walker, The Leader, (Saturday, 2 October 1915), p.56.
  9. Births: Charles, The Argus, (Saturday, 20 May 1916), p.13.
  10. Football, The Argus, (Thursday, 18 May 1911), p.8.
  11. Geo. Weymouth Pty Ltd, Electrical Engineers, Richmond, Victoria, collection of Museums Victoria.
  12. Ramirez, Jade, "‘We scoured the entire internet’: Fromelles research brings history to life at St Clare’s", About Catholic Schools, Friday, 22 February 2019.
  13. Cramsie, Debbie, "Bringing the Past to Life", The Catholic Weekly, Wednesday, 25 September 2019.
  14. Red Cross Files.
  15. Deaths: On Active Service: Clarke, The Age, (Thursday, 19 July 1917), p.11.
  16. Died on Service: Clarke, The Argus, (Thursday, 19 July 1917), p.1.
  17. In Memoriam: On Active Service, The Argus, (Monday, 21 July 1919), p.1.
  18. 212th Casualty List.
  19. Roll of Honour, The Flemington Spectator, (Thursday, 14 September 1916), p.6.
  20. Service Record; also, 335th Casualty List.

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References