Cubitt William Arnold James

First Name: 
Cubbitt (Will)
Middle Name: 
William Arnold
Last Name: 
Date of Birth: 
Friday, November 19, 1897
Mother's Name: 
Rachel Welbury Arnold
Father's Name: 
Thomas James
Date Enlisted: 
Saturday, July 28, 1917
Rank at Enlistment: 
17th Battalion
21st Reinforcement
Date of Death: 
Saturday, July 28, 1962
Place of Death: 
Bangalow, N.S.W.

Cubitt William (Will) Arnold James (Service No 7144) was born 19 November,1897 in Shellharbour, N.S.W., to Thomas James and Rachel Welbury Arnold. The family of 13 lived at ‘Rosemont’ farm at Dunmore.  The James and Arnold families have strong ties to Shellharbour.

Will’s Grandfather William James was born at St Ives in Cornwall. When he arrived in Australia he was engaged to build Penrose for Mr Evans at Dapto. In 1854 he began dairying at Shellharbour and built his home 'Bravella' at Dunmore, in the same style as Penrose.

The James family were renowned dairymen in the area for generations. William served as Mayor and Alderman of Shellharbour Municipal Council and assisted building the Methodist, Presbyterian and Church of England at Shellharbour. William’s daughter Mary married Harry Thomas and they named their farm at Dunmore St Ives after her father’s birthplace.

Will’s maternal grandfather, George Cubitt Arnold, was a baker in Shellharbour from 1872-1894, and in Albion Park 1894-1912. Three of his sisters, Miriam, Eva, and Beatrice, served as Red Cross Nurses during World War I.

Before joining the Army, Will went to the North Coast and worked for Len James (no relation) at Nashua. He enlisted in the war in 1917 and left Sydney for England.

Once there, his Battalion trained on the Salisbury Plains. He served in France and England for two and a half years during the war where he was twice wounded, and served a further year with the Veterinary Corp in France and Belgium once the war had ended.

On his return the Australia and discharge from the AIF, Will went to Clunes near Nashua, where his Uncle's lived. There he met Frances Mary Maude Kennedy whom he married in Lismore in October 1921.

Will’s father, Thomas James, of Shellharbour had purchased ‘Tongarra’ in 1920 and it is believed Will and his father had once planned to run the family farm ‘Rosemont’ and ‘Tongarra’ together. ‘Tongarra’ was sold in 1933.

Will and Maude had four children; Dulcie, Bevan, Kernick and Vivian. The family lived for a few years at Albion Park but left the area in 1927 and went to Dorrigo where Will worked for the Main Roads Department with the bridge building team. They stayed in the Dorrigo area and farmed for 25 years before moving to Coffs Harbour for the nine years prior to their deaths in 1962.

Will enlisted in World War II and served for five years, and was serving in Darwin during the bombing raids In March 1942. On his return form the Second World War, Will spent some time with his sister Miriam James at ‘Mt Hutton’ at Injune.

Spackman, Lorna 1991 'My Name is Jemima'

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