I am trying to track down information on Private J Hartney who testified to seeing my relative WHC Rose fall in action in the German trenches on the night of 19/20 July 1916 (his remains have now been identified thanks to the Frommelles Association).  

However, Private J Hartney, Service Record 3080 does not seem to have his records listed as part of our WWI heritage.  The only online record I can find for him is a Court Martial record on 13 September 1918, I don't have the $69 to access his open record for the court martial, but am wondering why the rest of his Service Record is not online?  

He obviously fought on the Western Front during 1916 and they found him at Perham Downs on 8 May 1917 to get his testimony regarding WHC Rose being in the German trenches.  

Can anyone help me with finding more information on this man please.  

The reason for my curiosity is that I am a therapist who specialise in stress and trauma.  Both these (young) men fought at Frommelles on the night of 19/20 July 1916 (a terrible night).  One died and was awarded 3 posthumous awards.  The other survived and was court martialled 2 years later.  That sounds like PTSD to me.  

So I am surprised J Hartney's records aren't online with all the other soldier's records from WWI.

Many thanks for any help on this.


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Suzanne,  He was Joseph HARTNEY

His record is listed in the following link and the 2nd link has a bit more information on him - I can research his family further if you need it




Thank you so very much Elizabeth!  That is wonderful.  And yes please, I would like some further information on his family if possible.  

Now I just have to improve my reading of records skills.... I can see things like the following:

on 12 Dec 1916 he was admitted to hospital in England with concussion

on 29 Jan 1917 he was charged with using obscene and threatening language...

and then was AWOL for what appears to be a couple of months before he surrendered and was courtmartialed, and sentenced to 4 years penal servitude but mercy was given and his sentence commuted.  

Thanks for this.

Suzanna,  I will see what I can find & get back to you

I really feel sorry for these men and what they endured - I have done many RSL profiles over the past few years and come across some awful stories & situations - any wonder they went AWOL but I know it was frowned upon at the time

Now to find some more info about Joseph


Suzanna,  Further information - hope it helps

Joseph Norman HARTNEY  Service No. 3080
birth was registered in 1896
father Christopher HARTNEY
mother Christina CREAMER who married in 1895 Sydney

Joseph had two known siblings
1. Alphonsus HARTNEY
2. Eileen HARTNEY

In 1921 Joseph married Alma Louise ATKINS in Sydney

Joseph Norman HARTNEY died on 2nd May, 1968 and was cremated at Woronora Cemetery in Sydney - Roman Catholic, Plaque Lawn 2 - 1216

his wife Alma Louise HARTNEY died in 1992 - same cemetery details
Photo of his memorial plaque - 


Photo of memorial plaque for wife Alma


regarding deciphering the war records - some are better than others but many are indecipherable - you probably noticed that you can enlarge the page to make it easier to read?

I havn't actually read his as yet



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