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The Great War : Roll of Honour
Names of soldiers are listed on the Roll of Honour (Honour Board) at the Footscray Town Hall, (now Maribyrnong City Council Chambers), Cnr Napier and Hyde Streets Footscray.
The research below was done by Mrs. Esma Green, City of Footscray Historical Society, 5th September,1988
On first floor, Town Hall, Cnr. Napier & Hyde Sts., Footscray. (Mel.Ref.Map 42, D5).
This roll of honour in a reduced form was installed in the old town hall in 1916/17. (See sketch of board above which appeared in the 1917-18 annual report of Council.) Upon demolition of this building, it was transferred to the new town hall in 1936, and additions were made to accomodate the great number of servicemen's names.
The Roll of Honour made entirely of polished Victorian blackwood at a cost of £150, is divided into two sections which are located on each side of double wooden doors.. Each section has ten columns and is flanked by pillars. Written across the parapet of each section, in gold lettering, is "ROLL OF HONOUR" and a further inscription appears below an elaborately carved City of Footscray coat of arms situated within an arched area above the doors. (Since the Honour Roll was constructed, the design of Footscray's coat of arms has been changed).
The servicemen's names are in gold lettering as is the following inscription below the coat of arms:
THEY FOUGHT FOR
COUNTRY'S HONOUR 1914
THEY LIVE IN OURS 1918
Builder Not known
On 24th September, 1921 by Governor of Victoria, Lord Stradbroke.
The following extract was taken from the Mayor's Report, City of Footscray Annual Report, 1916/17.
ENLISTMENTS The men of Footscray have heard the call and a comparison of the numbers enlisted with the population will show that it compares extremely well with any other Municipality. I have been able to obtain the exact number of men who have been accepted, but from the information we have received, Footscray's contribution to the Australian Imperial Forces, about 3,000, is very high and in proportion to the total eligibles in the City above the average. It may be interesting to state that the male population is approx. 14,500. The number of men between the ages of 18 and 45, according to official estimates therefore should be 6,700. Deducting from this number those unfit, it will be found, on examination, that at the present time about 64% of the Footscray fit eligibles have enlisted.
HONOR BOARD The proof of this statement is seen in the Honor Board which the Council has had erected in the Town Hall. Although this Board is larger than any yet erected in the State, the names handed in by the citizens so far cannot be placed thereon, and provision will have to be made for its extension. The design, structure and ornamentation of this Honor Board undoubtedly make it a distinctive feature of the Town Hall. In fact, it is so constructed as to be a permanent part of the Town Hall. It is built exclusively of specially selected Victorian Blackwood at a cost of f150.
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