John Thomas Arthur Bolton/Arthur John Lee


John Thomas Arthur Bolton Reproduced from the Lock family in WWI by Philippa Scarlett, original from the State Records New South Wales, 407, NRS2138, 3/6084 p. 55


Service number 1040

Links to Service Records:$story-7020

John Thomas Arthur Bolton/Arthur John Lee was born in 1887 at Rooty Hill (See Locke Family Lineage).

These two men were one and the same.

Bolton was born at Rooty Hill, 1887. He enlisted as Arthur John Lee in Liverpool, on the 18th of May NSW in 1915, using his mother’s maiden name ‘Lee’. He gave his occupation as boundary rider but in later correspondence he is described as being a saddler. He lived near Windsor at Forrester, NSW. It would later come to light that his real name was John Thomas Arthur Bolton (son of Lily Lee and John Thomas Bolton). His wife, Laura Bolton revealed his real identity in letters to the Australian Imperial Force (see below). She calls him ‘Arthur John Thomas Bolton’. Perhaps he was known as ‘Arthur John’ to distinguish him from his father, John Thomas Bolton. His father was the son of Clara Sarah Locke.


It may seem strange that this man went under other names but there are many instances of Aboriginal soldiers re-enlisting under other Christian names and sometimes even different surnames. Aboriginal men also faced prejudice when enlisting and  were often rejected first time round on some flimsy pretext. Therefore  they would use a different name when re- enlisting.

He served in the 7th Australian Light Horse Regiment and saw action in Egypt and at Gallipoli. He was wounded at Gallipoli, his injuries being described as ‘shrapnel left leg while charging’, sustained 6th September, 1915.  Subsequently when he served in Egypt his leg continued to trouble him and he was discharged on medical grounds, returning to Australia in August 1916.

For more information regarding the 7th Light Horse Regiment, go to ‘Additional Information’.